The Birth of a New Business
2012 was an exciting year for me as I launched a new business with my wife called Noteworthy Wines. More about that in a moment.
It was also a little bittersweet as I moved away from a business that I’ve loved and profited from over the last 15 years. Anyone who has started up a business knows what it is like to put your all in it, from the beginning to the end. The business sector has changed a lot over the years, now people can get help online from companies like Early Growth, to help when they need to pitch to investors or get help with a financial model, it has come in leaps and bounds for startups, but it is still hard work no matter the decade.
I’ve been the sole proprietor of Bottree Digital Services for more than a decade. It’s been the foundation for enterprises such as BarChord.com, Canada’s first paid download site. It’s been central to my life as a digital marketer and ‘guru’. It has lead to many consulting gigs that have tossed unique challenges and opportunities related to building brand awareness online, selling goods through new channels, and generating goodwill with charities and non-profits.
The digital industry – like most industries – is in a constant state of change.
Instead of ranting about what lies ahead of us, I’ll sum up my digital marketing advice to this: Beware! This is an unregulated market and there are a LOT of charlatans out there who will take your money and not lose any sleep over it. If you’re ever in doubt of something that’s been presented to you, let me know and I’ll give you a free evaluation. I hate seeing people get burned.
Moving Forward …
I too having been working on a big change, but it’s not what many would expect. For a very long time, I’ve had an interest in everything that the world of wine has to offer: culture, history, food, growing, producing, etc and I’ve spent the last 3 years training to be a sommelier and have also been taking wine appreciation courses through London UK’s Wine and Spirits Education Trust.
It’s been a blast and I’ve chosen to follow this path instead of the digital marketing route.
There are too many reasons to list why, but I look forward to what these changes offer.
And with that, Noteworthy Wines was born.
Noteworthy Wines is now a licensed LCBO agent and we are able to discover, order, deliver and enjoy new wine products in Ontario that may not be available through the LCBO because of the limited volume available. That said, we’re also focusing on products that come in higher supply, with an intent on getting them into the LCBO for general consumption.
Our sales focus will be on corporate events, weddings, and the celebration of life in general.
The Fun Part
For most people, the process of meeting new people, wine enthusiasts, world-class chefs, people getting married and those celebrating the everyday moments would be enough.
Of course, I’ve been known to ‘complicate’ things and this situation is no different.
I plan on doing everything possible to win the initial trust that my new business partners put in me and my abilities. There’s no doubt about that. I want our business to be professional, so when we have to meet clients in person, we will look into wearing a uniform and get clothing made up from companies like Imprint so we look ready to do business.
However, I also want to use our new business as an ongoing case study and example of how to approach the digital world. In other words, I don’t intend to divorce digital completely.
In the past, I’ve always had to rely on other people’s cash-flow, trust, and brand recognition to promote products online. Today, it all begins with our money, our product, and our efforts to generate sales. Of course, generating sales is never a simple process. There are so many techniques out there, so it’s important to find the one that works for your business and your products or services. We’ve recently been looking into sales territory mapping to try and increase sales in our local area. That could be useful. We’re going to be applying a lot of different sales techniques, so we should see an increase in sales.
As we go forward, I’ll continue to occasionally add to this blog talking about specific results that matter to us as we tackle new (and not so new) digital tactics to get found online and generate sales. We invite you to follow and share your ideas as well.
This Guru For Hire
While we build the business, I’ll be clear that I’m still for hire for select jobs related to digital marketing.
However, if you read my blog, you’ll see that my strengths are with understanding some of the ‘big picture’ issues related to the Canadian media landscape. I’m interested in research, writing and commentary as they relate to the evolution of the digital space in Canada.
If you think there’s a fit with work you’re putting together or would like some feedback on general strategy, let me know.
But don’t be surprised if I try to sell you a bottle of wine in the process!
Get Found Online – and buy good wine!
Bottree Digital Services & Noteworthy Wines