Bunny for breakfast is consultancy from Nick Ruskin, aimed at helping small businesses and start ups get off the ground via web, social media and marketing. The idea is that the skills I use with larger SMEs can be shared with smaller businesses.
This is the second version of Bunny for breakfast, and was relaunched March 2016. We still offer the same high quality web designs on sound programming, the same low prices and excellent support but it’s no longer just me, I’m supported by trusted freelancers I use with my other business. Advice is still free but most importantly I’m now offering optional mentoring to help businesses engage with their customers, get found and grow themselves, and this I’m charging for on a low month by month or quarterly basis. And we’re starting to see some great results – it’s surprising how little social media you need to do to get sales.
I had lots of successes with the first version of Bunny for breakfast but it grew too fast, and having learned a lot from a few mistakes, the experience reshapes this new Bunny for breakfast. So a little of the history may help you decide if it’s worth exploring further.
I launched Bunny for breakfast just over two years ago when we moved to the Cotswolds from Oxford. I’m still a partner in NickRuskin.com, a London based programming/digital project management consultancy specialising in developing code for bespoke sites. Working in London, I was a bit shocked at the quality of web sites produced locally and surprised at the high prices charged. (Tip: London consultants are often cheaper as competition is fierce.)
So I set up a local web design consultancy of my own, Bunny for breakfast offering cheap, high quality sites with great service and support, and ended up with just over 40 clients within a year. I added Bunny for lunch in London and six months later it was approaching 100 with clients in Bath, London and the Midlands, but clearly I had a problem as clients weren’t using the sites as planned.
On nearly three out of every four sites on my servers, the client hadn’t changed a thing since day one. We’d write the site and put together a great story about the product or service, and that was as far as the site would go. (NickRuskin.com programs and project manages larger sites that are business critical so the prospect of building but not using a site was a surprise to me.)
But in reality most people want their business to develop through their site, not just provide static information. The problem was most of the clients hadn’t the time or inclination to write blogs and social media themselves, and quickly put well intentioned plans to regularly update their sites on hold.
I discussed this with groups of web designers at various events and though they had far fewer clients overall the proportions were similar – generally they viewed these as their best clients as most profitable and least trouble!
I don’t see it that way. It’s very important to me that this business helps smaller businesses grow but with so many designs going through, it wouldn’t be possible, so the business had to be rethought out. The issues for the clients were time and money. For clients without the resources to market their business, the simple option is to do it yourself. That’s really hard, it needs new skills, research and lots of time. Time is often also short but there is a solution.
Mentoring the business owner, or member of staff, to get them up to speed on the basics of SEO and social media. Encourage them and help them plan and structure their time, and monitor and report on their progress. Provide researched key words, updates on what’s trending. Advise on promotions and provide the tools to make them work, plus guidance on good practice and any legal requirements. And finally provide graphics support and copywriting. And it works.
I want to nurture and encourage the businesses I work with. We can produce great looking, effective sites and promotions, and help you use them. I’ve introduced a new support facility to provide ‘on request’ quick training videos to show how to use any aspect of your site from us. Basically, I’ll talk you through and show you what to do in a clip you can watch whenever you wish, and provide these as often as needed. I’m still happy to come and see you and talk but a clip of your site you can return to is invaluable.
The other change is the introduction of renewable quarterly hosting and agreements. Basically, we don’t tie you into long agreements and make it really easy for you to take your site and manage yourself, should you prefer to. Try doing that with any of the ‘cheap’ sites from major hosts that provide everything, they can prove very expensive when your business grows and very difficult to leave.
So if that sounds of interest, scroll on down to see our prices and capabilities, plus some examples of our work. And if you’d like to find out more, give me a call or send a message.