The Key To Success According To This Tech Founder? Stick To Your Niche
You might be wondering how a graphic designer with a fine arts background and a love for photography and fashion ended up launching an agency specializing in tech and website creation.
Promise Tangeman is the woman behind Go Live HQ, a boutique graphic and web design studio dedicated to helping businesses launch the website of their dreams. You can consider her a woman who codes, whose design and branding skills allow her to color outside the lines of tech’s “bro culture” and empower other business owners by helping them create their own websites.
As an entrepreneur who juggles many aspects of owning an agency, Tangeman swears by two productivity hacks and has learned to narrow in on her niche rather than be all things to all people. Learn how Tangeman manages all aspects of her thriving business and why her future as a creative slash founder shows so much promise.
Karin Eldor: What led you to launch Go Live HQ in 2012?
Promise Tangeman: Over the years I began to lean into my strengths and passions more, and align those with the holes I was seeing in the marketplace. So, I rebranded my freelance business to become Go Live HQ. As a team we would focus on web design only for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Through the creation of website templates and custom web design services (for sites on the Squarespace and Showit platforms), the goal is to launch websites quickly. Most design firms take six months to one year to launch a website, whereas we do it in five days flat.
Eldor: Why is the concept of focusing on a niche so important to you?
Tangeman: When your industry feels flooded with other people doing the exact same thing as you, you have to be different in order to stand out, and you have to stand out in order to get the sale. The number one question I get asked on a daily basis is: “How do I get more customers and clients?” That answer is simple: focus on your business and create a niche for yourself.
A niche is when you create a very specific product or service that only appeals to a small group of people. So you’ll create a more focused product, market it to fewer people, and as counterintuitive as it seems, actually make more money.
Eldor: Why do believe creating a niche will help you attract more customers and clients?
Tangeman: For starters, your business will be considered unique, so people will have a reason to talk about you and tell their friends about you. As well, you’ll be viewed as a specialist in the sector of your industry, and therefore you’ll be your specific customer’s first choice. And you’ll have a better, more targeted product, so people will be willing to pay a higher price for it. As a result, you’ll have a higher and faster conversion to sale, because you’ll know exactly where and how to market your product.
Eldor: I know you also love fashion! I noticed that you’re intentional about posting fashion-related content on your personal blog and Instagram, rather than adding it to Go Live HQ’s feeds. Can you tell me about this?
Tangeman: A lot of our clients appreciate my personal style, but I don’t believe my company should be a melting pot of everything that I love. I think a lot of entrepreneurs make that mistake. They want all the things that they love to somehow be incorporated into their business model, which can create a mess of confusion for potential customers.
Eldor: You wear so many hats at Go Live HQ! What are two your favorite productivity hacks?
Tangeman: 1- Batch work: I’m not a multitasker and I don’t thrive when jumping from task to task quickly or getting pulled into a million different directions all at once. That’s why I’m a huge believer in batch working, where you group similar tasks that are on your to-do list together into one time chunk. So, for example, I spend Mondays dedicated to any major administrative tasks. I spend Wednesdays dedicated to writing and editing helpful content for my company’s blog, social media, and speaking events.
2- Outsource: I outsource the things I am slow at or not good at. In order to maximize my time most effectively for the business, I have to focus on the tasks that only I can do for the business. And I have learned to outsource the rest. When I started out I needed to be the one doing the design work. Now that I’ve built my design team, I am focused on networking, building relationships, and creating and teaching helpful content around building a website and growing a business.
Eldor: What would you tell someone who is ready to take the leap and start their business, and turn their passion into their paycheck?
Tangeman: Start a side hustle and don’t quit your 9 to 5 yet. When you start a side hustle you’re able to test your business concept, try things, and experiment without the pressure of making a living. But when you quit your 9 to 5 and are stressed about making ends meet, you make poor decisions.
Eldor: What’s the best business advice you’ve ever received?
Tangeman: Always be a learner. Don’t let yourself become too good or too proud of whatever you’re doing that you become fearful of taking risks or trying new things. Stay curious!
Eldor: What are 3 essential characteristics to being a female entrepreneur?
Tangeman: 1- The ability to follow through: Dreams are a dime a dozen but it’s the execution of the idea and follow-through that will help you stand out from the rest and find success.
2- Integrity: What goes around comes around.
3- Faith: You have to have hope and faith in something bigger than yourself to see big dreams take shape.
Eldor: Tell me about Designer Vaca! I love that it’s the only conference geared specifically for female graphic and web designers!
Tangeman: Designer Vaca is a two-day “vacation” held in Palm Springs, California for female graphic and web designers all over the world. It started when my design colleague at the time, now co-founder Alyssa Yuhas, called me to talk about how to handle a difficult client situation. After bouncing ideas off each other, we realized that we really wanted to be able to do that more often, with more designers in our industry.
Eldor: What’s next for Go Live HQ?
Tangeman: I’ve always had a strong passion for helping people launch what they love. So, in this next season we will continue doing that through a brand new affiliate program. We’ll also work on bolstering our DIY resources to help people design and launch their first website, to get their business off the ground.