I meet Jeff several years ago when I sought his help with my business website. I met up with Jeff again recently at a Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce business referral group meeting and learned that Jeff's business, Imageworks, LLC has grown, and now has many large corporate clients. He always seems to be ahead of the curve when it comes to website development for generating new business, and he agreed to share some of his insights with me.
Timothy Becker: Jeff, what services do you provide at Imageworks?
Jeff Cohen: There are four reasons people come to Imageworks: basic website design, help with selling something online, a custom application development to solve business logistics, and for help with lead generation, search engine optimization and social media.
Timothy Becker: How did you get started as a web developer?
Jeff Cohen: I was working at a terrible job and I was mercifully laid off. Rather than look for a job with my business, marketing, and technology experience, I became intrigued with the internet which was in it's infancy. I had a friend who lived on the Connecticut shore who ran a small start-up helping people to get online. I figured if he was doing it, so could I. Our first customers included Rein's Deli, Connecticut Golfland, Economy Oil Change, The Insurance Store and Kaplan Computers.
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Timothy Becker: How have you been able to help businesses improve their sales?
Jeff Cohen: Some of the projects I have worked on have started as online shopping sites and now do ten of thousands of dollars in sales. We have helped our clients with inbound lead generation programs that have help them quadruple their sales.
Timothy Becker: Can you talk about how you do that?
Jeff Cohen: Our proprietary system of lead generation and lead nurturing uses many well known tools, but we have packaged them and focused them specifically for business growth.
Timothy Becker: How has social media affected web marketing?
Jeff Cohen: Social media is another place where revolution has forced people to change how they interact with their customers. It can be very effective if employed properly.
Timothy Becker: How have iPads and smart phones changed website development?
Jeff Cohen: The scariest fact about mobile websites is that you already have one. Thirty percent of websites are now viewed by mobile devices. If you do not understand how your site works (or doesn't work) on a mobile device, your prospects do. One of our specialties is retrofitting an existing site to have a mobile presence. We have a free mobile website manifesto that explains everything you need to know about mobile web development at http://blog.imageworksllc.com/mobile-website-development/.
Timothy Becker: What advice do you have for business owners regarding their website?
Jeff Cohen: Increasingly, tomorrows buyers are looking for businesses on the web. It is extremely important to look at your website as if you were a customer. Does it say about your services and products what you want it to? Does it speak in your customers voice and not your voice? If you are honest, there is room for improvement.
Timothy Becker: What's next for Imageworks, LLC?
Jeff Cohen: A few years ago Facebook didn't even exist. Sites like MySpace were king. They are all but gone now. The pace of change continues to accelerate and technology allows everyone to see information instantly. It is going to be very interesting to see where we are two, five and 10 years from now.