Springfield, MO

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Startup Corner: Jahana Uchtman, Your Digital Marketing Assistant

Springfield's startup community is here. Take the pulse.

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Minimally viable product …
Digital marketing services like web design, online advertising, newsletters and digital marketing strategies to small businesses. Act as an “assistant” on a project basis to better understand the business and customize each solution to its specific needs.

Problem solving …
Most business owners understand how easy it is to fall behind the competition without an online presence but lack the time to really understand it and do it well. They also are wary of outside agencies that don’t understand the struggles they face. I work one-on-one with owners and managers to pinpoint issues, create a custom strategy, then implement the plan.

Seed money …
I spend a couple hundred dollars a month on software, advertising, memberships and marketing materials. Since my largest cost is my time, I’m able to grow organically without a big chunk of startup capital.

Hurdles overcome …
My lack of skills in sales. Once I worked with a client; they were always impressed with my knowledge, thoroughness and results. It was approaching people in the first place that intimidated me. I’ve had to work a lot on showing my passion to my potential clients and explaining why my services matter.

Next phase …
As my client base grows, I plan on hiring specialists to focus on graphic design, coding and social media management.

Pivot …
When I first decided to work with local clients, I was obsessed with creating the perfect website, getting business cards and general branding – what entrepreneur Noah Kagan calls being a “wantrapreneur.” He suggests stopping everything to just make a sale. Figure out if people want what you have. So that’s what I did.

Biggest mistake …
If I had a do-over, I would join a networking group sooner. It’s hard to overestimate the value of a personal connection.

Advice received …
“You can’t have it all.” I’ve thought a lot about this phrase as a mom to a 2-year-old. I want to spend his early years at home with him, but being a part of the business world is really fulfilling for me. It’s taken a lot of juggling sleep and help from family (especially my husband) to have the time to work. I’m determined to have most of both worlds.

Food for thought …
The knowledge economy is here. Many of us may have the opportunity to work where and when we want. Businesses also need more flexible and niche-oriented employees. Get great at a skill and find a way to market yourself. And teach your kids to code.


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