This JJ Entry is coming a little late this week, and for that I am sorry. Week 7 of the Project Charter was chock-full of deadlines that couldn’t be pushed back as easily as my weekly JJ update. Overall, there was lots of editing and little Internet marketing.
Also, I saved over $250 by pulling a few strings and doing a little bootstrapping.
Obj. 1: Finish Guide
My first objective for the semester is to finish the Official JuniorBiz Lawn Mowing Guide. Prior to the 7th week I had finished writing the 78-page guide and created the cover. Then up until the middle of the week Emil Motycka, “6-figure high school kid,” was improving the guide with suggestions from his own experiences. Then towards the end of the week I tailored Emil’s comments to my writing style and sent it to my Editor-in-Chief, Nick Scheidies.
Obj. 2: Increase Traffic
Increasing traffic to JuniorBiz.com is something I haven’t really been focusing on for a few weeks now, and as a result, traffic has fallen. I only had 111 visitors; which is the lowest weekly total since the first week of March. But from a business perspective, there is little reason to drive traffic to a website if an increase in traffic doesn’t necessarily increase profit. So sacrificing a couple (about 40 or 50) weekly visitors to spend more time developing a product (OJLMG) is a prudent tradeoff.
Obj. 3: Boost Online Presence
As far as boosting JB’s online presence, I was getting into a little bit of a rut. Recently I’ve noticed that I was following a lot of people on Twitter who weren’t following back. In general, I was following people who didn’t have a lot of followers under the theory that my updates would spend more time on their homepages. However, people who don’t have a lot of followers usually don’t spend as much time on Twitter as someone with at least a couple hundred followers.
Additionally, I was starting to follow at a much higher rate than I was being followed. So I utilized Twitter Karma – a tool that allows Twitter users to perform a bulk “unfollow” of people who don’t follow back. After using the tool I went from following almost 1200 people to under 800. By doing this, there is less clutter (updates from people who don’t care about me) on my Twitter homepage and it makes JuniorBiz appear more legitimate (as though I’m not just following a lot of people hoping they follow me back). In Week 7 I gained 48 new followers.
Obj. 4: Add Content
Objective 4 is to add interesting and relevant content to JuniorBiz.com. Since I added an unscheduled article to the site the week before, JJ Entry #7 was the only new content for the week. That entry described my experience on Ray Martinez’s radio show. After posting the entry I sent Ray an email with a link to the article. He replied, “What a surprise and thanks for the nice story! You guys will be the founding fathers of tomorrow.” Thus far, the article has received 74 hits.
I also noticed this week that JuniorBiz’s Google PageRank finally bumped up from 0 to 1! My goal for the semester is to have a PageRank of 3 (which I probably won’t reach), but at least it’s moving.
Obj. 5: Expand Local Awareness
Expanding local awareness is an intentionally vague objective that includes everything from meeting local entrepreneurs to competing in a local business plan competition. I spent a lot of time finalizing my business plan for Venture Adventure because a lot has changed with JuniorBiz since December (the last time I updated the plan).
In the previous JJ Entry I mentioned that FedEx Kinko’s was going to charge me $306 for printing and binding 6 copies of my business plan. Since August, I haven’t even spent $306 on my business. Obviously, I wasn’t going to fall into their trap.
So early in the week I talked to several people within CSU’s College of Business hoping they would be willing and able to give me an excessive amount of print credits. After contacting and interacting with 4 computer lab staffers, 2 professors and 1 lab manager, they agreed. So I bought a ream of glossy paper for $18, spent 2 hours printing and spent $30 on binding the guides at Kinko’s – effectively saving about $258 at the cost of a few hours and a little effort. Needless to say, I submitted my 6 copies of the business plan to Venture Adventure, just under the deadline..