May 2015 – Business of Web Meetup Notes

·         Rescue time – tracks productive/non-productive time by monitoring your computer usage

Dallin Harris, Skyhook Interactive, @SkyhookMktg
Budgeting and controlling interactive development costs

·         Measure – net profit (making money), customer net promoter score (scale 1-10, likely to refer to friend), employee sat score (recommend to friend) & follow-up question (why do you feel that way?)
·         Hit the target – kick-off meeting – listen, repeat back what you think clients want … capture little gems (may need to use against them) – documented in statement of work
·         Bill for everything – and get retainer to cover day-to-day communications, strategy discussion, etc
·         Be a partner – show them you’re willing to cut line items; admit where your limits are like logo design needs different skill
·         Screen & market (project and client) – define your ideal client, you’ll take if they come along (bread & butter), you’ll charge extra for difficult client & those you don’t want … 15 min pre-qual call (requires investment in marketing); has some canned rejection scripts to make it easier
·         **Set good expectations – roughly 30 things (list built from problems – net 7 days; warrantee 30 days; tell us up front if you don’t like design; turn-around; don’t try to steal employees) … willing to share this list
·         Make things sound as hard as possible – and keep communicating to build trust, telling them what they need
·         Practice iterative delivery – show early & often … header, style board, wireframe, and have them approve each
·         Always include cost/value for extra work you did, and then discount it … so they know value (also do this for pro bono work)
·         Cost killers – wrong client, wrong target, change orders, interruptions, bad work
o    Keep team focused with stand-up time 9-10am (interruptible but then not); it’s not time but attention that’s important
·         Must have culture of managing for profit – requires that you over communicate (people have to mock you & then you know you’ve gotten the message across
·         Profit margin – 15% net, good & solid
·         100% of development done with GIT & they transfer the files … 85% of cost is salaries; rent, software minimal
 
Audience feedback
·         Hourly rate is given but more for positioning – smaller projects should be hourly & only price out sections of the website (don’t understand work breakdown)
·         Proposal in 3 sections – discovery, WP core functionality & third section, business requirements like shopping cart – would still win with price a third higher
·         Fascinating discussion on paid/unpaid learning time – take baby steps with new functionality, but price things you don’t know so you can hire someone with required skills