If you are not doing content marketing your business is leaving money on the table. Try and figure out exactly what your users pain points are, and give them informative, actionable and timely information for the win.
Ollie started his first business at just 18 years of age with a loan from the Prince Charles Trust For Young Entrepreneurs. Learning the essentials of business from experience – making mistakes and working to constantly improve the bottom line – Ollie Smith fell in love with entrepreneurship, and has dedicated his career to it ever since.
Where did the idea for company come from?
I had a print company back in the day and was looking for a new professional printer online, but all the big companies seemed to hide their prices behind call or form walls – so once you actually did get a quote you had no idea if it was competitive or now. It was really difficult to even find ball park prices. I noticed this trend a lot with other confusing industries like double glazing and decided to give users a better way to find prices online and compare quotes.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
A typical day will start by checking the pulse of the business, how traffic, sales, ROI is looking etc. Then it will just be figuring out better and bigger content marketing ideas, and working with PR to try and get that content in front of as many people as possible. I’ll also be keeping my eyes out for potential acquisitions, and trying to keep a top down view of the industry and trying to predict any changes.
I stay productive by listening to some good music, and trying to stay in the flow state. Trying to focus on the micro tasks never really helps, I need to maintain the passion and excitement for the project as a whole and the rest just comes naturally.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Through our amazing team! Once I have a content plan in place, our team of writers will get to work researching and perfecting each new content idea.
What’s one trend that excites you?
Sustainability. More and more businesses are becoming more in-tune with the fact that consumers are demanding sustainable practices & products. A sustainable world is a happy world, and that just makes everything better.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
As strange as it sounds I think surfing is probably the number one thing. I find that it’s just as much about what you are doing with the rest of your life outside of work that effects your work levels. If you are happy, healthy and driven to keep a certain quality of life, that has far deeper effects than something like keeping your inbox tidy.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Take capital earlier, hire sooner and pick partners betters by focusing on where you want to be in 5 years, not 5 months.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
As a race we probably will reach a point of equilibrium with the planet, instead of destroying it like most people think. There are a lot of new epoch type technologies activly being built that will change the face of the world forever. One such example is the ITER tokamak in France, once fully operational could provide limitless, clean power. Also the rate of new children is now in negative growth in the west (in the UK its 1.6 children per family) so we seem to be aware of our resource limits and are adapting accordingly.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
Content marketing. If you are not doing content marketing your business is leaving money on the table. Try and figure out exactly what your users pain points are, and give them informative, actionable and timely information for the win.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
Honest reflection on strengths and weaknesses is a great strategy that helps you pick the right strategic partners and team. It’s hard to do because you have to openly admit your flaws which many people can’t do.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
Failure is part of the course, so I never really try and overcome it as such. There is only one strategy to use to transmute failure, and that’s to let it be a guide and a teacher. Once you figure out where things went wrong, it’s important to deeply reflect on it with no emotional attachment. Close your eyes and let the whole situation become clear in front of you without making any judgements. This will give you the clarity you need to make accurate learnings with no biases.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
One idea that I have wanted to see get built is a sustainable businesses portal. It would have user generated content about companies sustainability practices. You could leave reviews if a company is doing something that is above the norm, or needs addressing so it’s easy to make decisions about a potential partner, supplier or as a consumer a retailer. There would be numerous high value monitization options for the kind of traffic that business would earn.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
The best $100 services that we buy in general is list building thought our VA. We’ll usually get back a list of 1-200 highly targeted contacts for $70-$100 that could potentially be interested in sharing our content. It’s just a case of constructing an email with proper integrity and reaching out to the site owners in a non-spammy manor (let them see the content, and if they decide to share that’s up to them).
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
To stay productive I use a mix of Trello, Google sheets and Evernote. Trello is for execution of projects, Evernote keeps my ideas on hand, and Google sheets for content management. Having everything within a few clicks keeps me focused and productive.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
Dirty Genes by Ben Lynch is a great book that will help you understand your own individual polymorphisms and how they can be nutritionally enhanced or corrected to lead an even healthier life. Even if you are not sick, nearly everyone will be able to get another 10-20% extra health from learning about the principals in this book. The healthier you are, the more productive and resilient to stress you can be.
What is your favorite quote?
Your fears are a kind of prison that confines you within a limited range of action. The less you fear, the more power you will have and the more fully you will live. Robert Greene
- Content marketing is a must for any business, big or small.
- Optimise your genetics to achieve the next level of health and success.
- Transmute your failures into success by applying deep learning techniques.
Carlyn runs the day-to-day publishing operation here at ideamensch and interacts with our awesome customers and entrepreneurs. She is likely editing this with a cat on her lap.