Once again I have neglected the company blog for an extended period of time. Not because of laziness, but more in finding the time to give proper attention to the written word. As the work day progresses, time fades away, before you know it exhaustion takes over and the last thing I want to do is type out something interesting and insightful.
I have a couple blogs, one for myself (which I have not updated in a while) and the one you are currently reading.
When I originally set up the accounts I felt separation was warranted because why would I want people on the business side having to deal with anything from my personal life and vice versa. Plus, keeping personal and business life separate seems logical.
I have been pretty open regarding my hatred and questions about Facebook. We have never had a Facebook business page; I deleted my personal account over a year ago and have never felt more free. But...
Now that our company is working diligently on marketing the business, latching onto the power of the web and social media, I may be having a change of heart. Is it time for us to start a Facebook business page?
I openly despise, throwing barbs whenever I can, everything that is Facebook. The incessant baby bumps and people who I've talked to once pretending to be my bestee. However, my hypocritical juices are flowing, not wanting to miss out on any opportunity to help promote our business. Should I really let some, let's be honest, minor personal problems deny our business of opportunities?
These strong feelings I portend to have about Facebook over the last year and a half are all for naught if I decide to start a page. Seems pretty weak of me to cave on something not so important in the grand position of personal and business stances. However, we're not talking about abortion or gun control here.
Gasp...am I a flip-flopper?
Or does it not matter in the grand scheme of business and promoting the brand? After all, this is a personal position, ultimately hurting no one in the process. The caveat being that the company consists of my father and I only, with my dad not really caring or able to deal with any of the online promotion. Hence, much of what I put out there is very personal.
I try to use this blog as a billboard, company news site and sounding board for my thoughts and questions. The Facebook thing has been riling me for months since we started a concerted marketing effort via Adwords and now with the announcement of graph search earlier this month, I'm even more confused. Clearly, this is something I have strong issues with, but am I hurting the business in the process?
Any suggestions in our comments section or twitter regarding whether or not a Facebook business page is a must would be greatly appreciated.
Been a few weeks since our new CNC plasma table and Air Compressor were delivered, so I thought I would give a little update.
First off, the machine and air compressor are still not hooked up and running just yet. In fact, I haven't even taken the plywood off the table top that was placed there for shipping purposes. Usually, I would chalk this up to dropping of the ball or laziness. Not this time. We have actually been hindered by some electrical issues, and by issues I mean really old building with screwed up voltages and the like. Minor problems, but still problems.
So we have a 600 volt 3-phase coming into our rented space and we need to transform that down to a 230 volt 3-phase. I was unaware that this is an odd ball transformation and that much of today's industrial electricity or bigger buildings run on 208 volts 3-phase.
For some perspective, I am a dummy when it comes to electricity, so a professional has been hired. I like to think of my father and I as pretty handy with skills to take care of many tasks. These do not however include electricity or water.
Anyway, we have had to order a transformer--15 day wait--so that we can have our electrician get everything set, giving us the opportunity to schedule techs to come in and make the final connections for the equipment and software that runs the machine.
My stock answer to everyone who enters the shop these days is that we have cut sheet metal by hand for 20 years, so a few more weeks won't kill us. However, we need to start paying for our new toy, so crunch time is near.
We are close and my minor issues are exactly that, minor. The transformer is ordered and our electrician is set. A few more weeks and we should be rockin' and rollin'. As for me, I have that child at Christmas feeling again, except this time the gift is open but the batteries were an oversight. Now my shiny new gift sits neglected until the stores open later in the day.
Patience young grasshopper.
An interesting question was posed to me over the weekend on Twitter by one of my favorite follows @RayFrith1.
@kesheetmetal we started with simple press brakes and worked up to these. How do you find so much to add to your blog I find it hard.
— Ray Frith (@RayFrith1) January 5, 2013
Honestly, finding things to blog about is the most challenging thing I do on a weekly basis. I would love to pump out a post daily like some of the best bloggers out there. However, in an industry where much of the information is either too technical or boring, the byproduct of interesting things can be slim. Many HVAC and sheet metal businesses aren't even attempting, which makes it hard for many of us to learn. I am always excited to see others in our same industry giving it a try.
I have started upwards of 10 blogs over the last 6 years or so. All of them were crap because I started them for the wrong reasons. I wasn't focusing on what I knew or was interested in at all, only what I thought would make my blog popular or what would make me money. Basically, a get rich quick scheme. Needless to say, not good reasons to start a blog.
When I started this blog for the company I was writing for an actual purpose, on a subject I have some knowledge in and one that I enjoy, along with an interest in business. All of theses things lead to something that is real and can ultimately be interesting. Nobody wants to read anything that is fake or always trying to sell you something. People want to feel like they are behind the scenes, learning something or following the gossip. These are skills I am still trying to master while I find things to write or post about.
On the other hand this is a business and our ultimate goal is making money, so there will be some marketing and sell in what we do. However, my father and I are humans with all encompassing interests, which lead the direction of the business. The blog is a way for me to hash these things out and help our customers understand who we are and how are business runs on a daily or weekly basis. This can be difficult, but I enjoy writing and posting, which can make the process more enjoyable.
Things are easier to do when you actually enjoy what your creating. That's how I feel about growing the company these days. For the first time in a long while I enjoy going to work, making the business what I always thought it could be. The blog is a way to hash out ideas and display that enjoyment when the inspiration hits. Hopefully what I'm putting out there is relatively interesting to read.
If not, no biggie. I will post stuff anyway.
Over the last few days you may have noticed that many of our Twitter, Google+ and Linkedin links had a little more K & E panache than ever before. Well, your sharp eye could not be more accurate. Friday I decided to invest in a new short domain for all of our social media short links with the intent of helping to grow our brand as much as possible. For a $40 yearly investment I secured keshtm.tl as our new vanity short link. Therefore, when you're perusing our social media pages and see our new link, you can trust that you will be led to our website kesheetmetal.com or a trusted article sent out by my father or I. Who am I kidding...I would be the only one sending anything out :)
My nightly reading has focused more on branding the business and making sure that our web presence is as consistent as possible. The short link is just another step in that direction. We may be just a tiny local HVAC sheet metal fabrication shop in the physical world. However, with the internet, we can be as big as we wanna be, spreading our wings and finding new business wherever it is hiding.
Walking that same line we must keep in mind not to over extend ourselves, losing focus on finding new business and keeping our new investment running at all times. Marketing the business is new territory, so we must keeep things in perspective and not spread ourselves too thin.
For maybe the 200th time since I started running a website/blog for the company I have gone ahead and changed the entire setup. Moving the site from a scratch coded monstrosity, to a smooth running Wordpress version that's effortless to update and supremely easier to read and navigate. The biggest problem is the amount of work I created for myself in the process of these undertakings. Seeing that we are a two person company and a single computer literate, the odds are stacked that I, the younger fabricator, will be the one running anything with the words, online or website.
So the new kesheetmetal.com is easier to navigate with everything finally residing inside the same site. No more venturing into the outer reaches of the internet to find our blog or photos page. Thanks to the wonders of Wordpress themes, I have found a way to keep everything in house. This however takes time. A lot of time. Therefore the current website is a work in progress with daily changes and updates to many of the existing pages and ones that will follow. We thank you for your patience and please visit the website and blog often to see what's new.
The web is a great place to find a new and growing customer base no matter what industry you work in or how local you are. With everyone carrying a computer in their pocket these days, finding companies on the internet is easier than it ever was. Having a quality presence online is a must have asset in the business environment we work in today. Even for a couple solitary tin knockers, tucked away in the beautiful Adirondack Mountains of Glens Falls, NY.