For some this is a lightbulb moment, and others it might be a good refresher. We are 35+ years into the digital age, yet for some online marketing is still a mystery. I was at a meet and greet and while navigating the room I was reminded a common mistake made when starting a business

Time after time we see businesses that have an @gmail or @yahoo or @comcast email address. There are a couple problems with this. First off, you are marketing Gmail/Yahoo/Comcast, etc. whenever you hand out your business card or people type in your email. Secondly, it makes your business look less competent or “sketchy”. This is an inexpensive issue to correct, and I encourage anyone that not using an email to get that changed today.

To fix this problem and set your business up for success, you will need to get a registered domain name.  Even if you don’t have a website “yet,” this is an essential step. With you can then set up an email with your company. Now, you don’t have to be an IT expert to do this. If you search for domain names you will find several low costs options. I used GoDaddy when I did a personal project. Bluehost is also a good option where you can get the domain and email together and host a website for around $16.00 a month. Once you get a plan with a provider, they will do a domain look up and help you determine options for what is available that fits with your company name. 

If you are worried about losing your emails that are sent to your @gmail etc. you can configure your emails to come into the same inbox on any application where you get your emails. That way the cards you gave out, past clients, bills etc. won’t get lost and will all be centrally located. Speaking of – make sure you reprint your cards and update your directory listings with your new email immediately. You know your business is competent – make sure everyone that meets you believes that.

— B