DIY Web 2.0 Agency Presence (Without a Staff or an Agency)

Yeah, I know…poor me, huh? Okay, so first things first – we have the url secured and the WordPress template (I’m using Thesis from DIY) loaded and functional. But I don’t like the design. And I’m not an official designer. I started life as a Creative Director, but I’m a writer more than an artist. Which means I have dangerous opinions about design, but I’m not officially qualified.

Here, I’ll have the design department work on it – except there is no design department. This means that for now, I’ll have these photos to the right (okay, I got those out of the way) that I don’t like and cannot do anything about. And I’m not crazy about Georgia, I’d rather have Helvetica Neue or something from HF&J foundry (see just dangerous enough), but I don’t know if they’ll run everywhere.

It’s one thing to work on the brand strategy and advertising campaigns. It’s quite another to sit down with no incredibly talented teams to fall back on and just do the work your self. I don’t know if understanding how to get Google Analytics running for my blog will help my work with clients, but it just might.

Here’s the tools I’m using (so far anyway):

  1. Setting up a WordPress site for my blog, my agency (TBD), and a writing project I’m working on — eventually, I’ll have a couple of the start-ups I’ve either founded or that are clients on there as well.
  2. I’m using the Thesis template by DIY. It’s elegant, and has nice design tools although not the WYSIWYG of a Squarespace, it also doesn’t cost. And I’m anxious to see version 2.0.
  3. I’m wiring the WordPress site into my LinkedIn and my Twitter accounts. I’m trying to migrate Facebook back to just personal stuff instead of work stuff. Perhaps that is old fashioned, but so be it.
  4. I’m considering using Posterous (and now Post.ly) to help with posting (and because I’m interested in all of these automation sites). It integrates well with WordPress – and I have a Tumblr site for the random things I see and like.
  5. Instead of building out a robust personal site, I want to use other social sites to showcase client work (on Virb, Flickr, etc.), and then share presentations (SlideShare) and whitepapers (Scribd) that I’m working on as well. More for the experiment of it than because I think it will work beautifully.
  6. I’m using Google Analytics to monitor (the currently non-existent) site traffic, and I’ll register the site with Quantcast just for kicks.
  7. What am I missing?
  8. Ah, sharing on Google Reader and probably a few other items.

At TBD, we talk to clients all the time about social media – what it is and isn’t, how to and not to use it – but I am seriously impressed with the people who just started on their own, learned as they went about it, and did not quit.

Not quitting is a big deal. More on that later.