What Web Design is Really About and Why I Started my Own Business

I haven’t written a blog post in several months. One important step for keeping your website current is with ongoing blog posts, but that can sometimes get lost in the pile of other work requirements that comes with being a local business owner.

Interviewing local businesses and writing features about them for the Hawaii Business Review (HBR), keeping my Instagram accounts updated, writing content, project proposals, doing SEO updates, research, and surfing to balance it all out keeps my plate pretty full!

All these awesome interviews I’ve been lucky enough to conduct, however, have really pushed me to think more about why I do what I do, and how I came into web design, content writing, and digital marketing as a profession.

Five years ago, or even five months ago, I would not have imagined I’d be where I am—working to develop an online course, designing websites, setting up ad campaigns, and offering my advice and ideas to local business owners. Covid has shown many of us, however, just how rapidly our expectations must shift. In a world that’s constantly changing, Covid has been an even starker example of changing workspaces, digital platforms, and lifestyles.

Our world shifted dramatically in the last few months, and it’s reminded me more than ever why I chose to start my own business.

Local business owners have tons of things to think about. Invoices, bills, services, rent if you’re brick and mortar, and now how to pivot amidst state-mandated closures. That’s why I started doing business interviews for HBR—I saw it as an opportunity to contribute in a helpful way to local businesses, even if it was just a glowing interview. After finishing the first interview and hearing how much the business owners enjoyed it, however, I was reminded of why I love this work I do so much.

Website design allows me to connect with people and learn more about why they do what they do, and then help them convey that message to a larger audience. A website is shareable, clickable, and global. It has the potentiality to reach so many more people, sharing the story of that businesses’ awesome mission with more people than ever before.

I’ve also heard about business owners loosing lots of money to large SEO companies, individual web designers, and marketers. Unfortunately, high price points with low ROIs can be common in this industry. That’s why I made it a goal from the outset to provide value and knowledge to my clients first and foremost. Even if you don’t choose to work with me, I’m still willing and ready to share my knowledge and ideas. Because if I can help someone, I certainly won’t say no.

Grow my own business, and grow the businesses of others, at affordable price points providing real and measurable value to clients. As I’ve said (and you know) business owners are BUSY! When you have to focus so on so many aspects of the business, you can sometimes get stuck in maintenance, rather than growth.

I see Web Design and Digital Marketing as strategy local business owners can use that’s low effort on their end, which leads to growth: growth in revenue, growth in clients and customers, growth in time, growth in freedom. Unlike building a new addition to a home, web design is a relatively cheaper and cost-effective strategy for creating a long-term asset in the virtual marketplace!

I saw the need for affordable, honest, transparent, and collaborative web design in Hawaii markets and I set out to address it one business owner at a time. Before Covid hit, I was already seeing a need for digital platforms to help businesses stay relevant and continue to grow. Now, possibly more than ever, designing digital assets will be key for businesses to continue growing and thriving.

Eventually, of course Shelter-in-Place orders will be lifted, and quarantine protocols will end, but I truly believe that the New Normal will result in some changes in how customers interface with businesses, and how clients engage with networks and networking. Making assets for local business that will help them stay relevant and grow through this difficult economic time, and long past it, is my highest priority.

My life has always centered around how to help people. Beach Bum Poet LLC was born of a desire to help, advise, and engage with a beautiful array of incredible business owners, right here in our island home.

Many times, we don’t think about our story. I haven’t thought about my story much lately, since I’ve been so busy writing it! We don’t think about our story because so often each day is a whirlwind of goals, tasks, and activities. Our stories, however, are vital to who we are and how we run our businesses. If helping had never been a foundation of my life’s story, I wouldn’t have chosen this profession. If a love of writing hadn’t been a foundation of my story, I wouldn’t have started my Beach Bum Blog, and I would have never found out about the vast world of digital writing, marketing, and communications that comes with it!

What I’m trying to say is, even if you don’t believe it does, your story does matter. There’s never a bad time to share your story, and I believe that story-telling is an integral part of creating a virtual presence online. After all, why would you chose one product over another unless there’s something meaningful attached to it?

Whether it’s a short story or a long-form essay, I’m here to write it for you, to create your vision and make your virtual dreams a reality.

These are the four major reasons I started my own business: Helping, Growing, Addressing a Need, and Story-Telling. What are the reasons you started your business? How has your life’s narrative created your business narrative? How does life influence your art? Let’s answer these questions together and write your business story today!

Contact me, Savannah Lani, to learn more about how I can help your business grow and thrive today, and long into the future. Let's start writing your story.

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