Not unlike the carpenter who never gets around to fixing their own home, creative business owners can easily fall behind in fixing up their own website.
An accountability group is a tool to help you get the job done
A website is a requirement for creative businesses. Whether a graphic designer, web developer, writer, photographer, illustrator, or marketing person, you have to have a website. They are the tool that is used as a calling card and place to showcase work to prospective clients.
The challenge for creatives has always been their website. In fact, in all the years I have participated with the Creatives Roundtable, I can guarantee there are at least one or more members who have “update their website” on their list of goals to achieve.
This is one of the top tasks discussed in the groups because the fact is, accountability is the key to making progress on a project that can so easily get looked over when the next shiny client project woos you away.
Creatives are hired to design marketing materials that might include websites and/or visuals for them. So when challenged with the choice to work on a client’s project or their own, the client normally wins because it pays the bills. What one needs to realize is that investing in your own design and marketing is how you engage prospects for work down the road.
5 ways an accountability group helps to update your website
1. Stop spinning and get that website redesigned
With so many platforms available for a creative to design and publish a website, when you tackle the job of researching on your own, you can find yourself down a rabbit hole of never-ending options. Not just comparing one platform to the next, investing the time to give one a try with a trial, learning the UX, and seeing if it’s the right fit.
Working with an accountability group not only gives you a goal structure to move forward, but you also benefit from learning from peers what has worked for them. Being supported by fellow creatives, you have access to their experience so you can save yourself the time of trying something that is known to not be the right fit. As well, when you learn what options are you can decide if this is a project you can or even want to do the work yourself or tag in another creative who is skilled and loves doing the work so you can focus on the client work you prefer to do.
2. When you are accountable you see progress sooner
If there is one thing I have learned in my twenty-four years in the business is that my website is not a project that is created and then done. The nature of a digital site is how incorporating a regular routine of updating it will keep it relevant for longer. The hack to encourage consistent effort into the project can come from a deadline of the next accountability meeting so you can say you completed it. You have a reason to check the work off your list. Breaking the site down into tasks that can be completed each time we meet has been totally beneficial.
3. Get honest feedback from your peers
You know that the best projects with less errors have an editing workflow that includes a few sets of eyes. You can take advantage of the community in an accountability group by getting outside eyes on your website and get critiques that are actionable. Others will have experiences and views on certain aspects of your site that you just cannot see — as you are too invested and might have blinders on.
4. Making progress on a goal is easier when you aren’t alone
One of the benefits of participating in an accountability group is learning what has worked for others. When you put a plan into action, you also have the support cheering you on and making sure you don’t drop the ball.
You are likely to find another creative in the group who is also working on their website so having a ‘buddy’ in the same boat as you helps you to feel less alone in the weeds.
5. Move your website into the queue
Having the task on your list of goals staring at you everyday is how you finally choose to just do the work. If the website work isn’t on the list, it won’t ever magically get done.
The benefit of joining an accountability group is being connected to people outside of your inner circle. It’s space that is collaborative while at the same time a resource for all your website development questions. Get answers, and simply get the job done so you can focus again on doing the work and your website earns its keep by engaging new prospects.
Written by Crystal Reynolds