Episode #10 – Nait Gallego and Ben Mitrovitch from BodyPress Sites
In this episode number 10 of the InnovaBuzz podcast, Nait Gallego and Ben Mitrovitch from BodyPress sites, share with us how they’ve built a successful niche business, by recognizing a need and fulfilling it to their customers’ complete satisfaction. Listen to the interview to learn what Nait and Ben shared with us on the podcast.
Listen to the Podcast
Watch the Video
I’m giving away a copy of my “Seven Website Design Secrets to get you MORE Sales” Workshop Video, Workbook and Resources Guide valued at $97. Just tell us, in the comments below, an innovative way that you’ve used the Internet or innovative products perhaps that you’ve used on the Internet related to personal coaching, personal training or fitness. In few weeks I’ll ask Nait and Ben to swing by and award the prize.
Some of the highlights of this episode include:
- Nait and Ben identified a niche market with Beachbody Coaches, who needed websites and online marketing of a very specific nature, tested the idea with a client and developed a solution that has grown to a very successful product.
- Customer support is critical to the success of Bodypress Sites.
- Bodypress Sites is run on the “lean startup” model, relying a lot on customer feedback and testing of new ideas and features. Customer surveys are a vital tool to help guide the future development of Bodypress Sites.
- Good ideas are worthless if you don’t execute – try them out, take risks and accept feedback (no failures).
- It’s important to work in partnership with your customers, but you should also hold them accountable to their deliverables.
The Buzz – Our Innovation Round
Here are Nait and Ben’s answers to the questions of our Innovation round. Watch the interview to get the full scoop.
- #1 thing to be innovative – Execute your ideas. Don’t be afraid of failure – treat it as feedback. You have to DO something to make it happen!
- Best thing for new ideas – Brainstorm and bounce ideas off one another – the business partners. Try out in lean startup mode.
- Favourite tool for innovation – uxpin.com and Skype
- Keep project / client on track – Use a good project management system and be accountable for the milestones. Hold the client accountable too.
- Differentiate – Position yourself as the best in your niche.
Nait and Ben suggested I interview Troy Dean of Video User Manuals and WP Elevation, on a future podcast. So, Troy, keep an eye on your Inbox for an invitation from me, for the Innovabuzz Podcast!
Hint: to enter the competition, leave a comment under this video and tell us an innovative way that you’ve used the Internet or innovative products on the Internet related to personal coaching, personal training or fitness.
Click to Read…
Hi, I’m Jürgen Strauss from Innovabiz. Welcome to Episode No 10 of the InnovaBuzz Podcast – designed to help smart businesses with an interest in innovation and the Internet of Things become even more innovative.
In this episode, we have two guests, Nait Gallego and Ben Mitrovich from the California based web development company Linkd Media Solutions and from Body Press Sites.
With Body Press sites, Nait and Ben have developed essentially a turnkey solution for Beachbody fitness coaches to get a fully serviced website to take their business to a higher level. Nait and Ben describe how they’ve identified a very narrow niche market and a need within that market, that they’ve been able to service very well. It’s another fascinating interview, with a lot of great tips about focusing on your very own niche, testing and the lean start up model and how to turn “great ideas” into real solutions.
This week’s innovation tip is EXECUTE. As Nait and Ben point out, great ideas are worthless if they are just in your head or on paper. You need to try them out, take some risks, but execute the ideas. Sure, some of them won’t work – but that’s not failure, that’s feedback on the path to success! Accept that feedback as a gift and learn from it. That will develop new ideas or refine existing ones, then EXECUTE those ideas as well. Thomas Edison, credited with inventing the incandescent light globe as well as a lot of other things once said “I have not failed. I have found 10000 ways that won’t work.” Of course, along the journey, he also found some that worked in amazing ways.
Before we meet Nait and Ben, a quick competition announcement – this week’s competition prize is sponsored by Innovabiz – where we help smart, innovative business owners who need REAL, tangible results from the internet, transform their online presence into a business generation machine, that works EVEN when they are not working.
The prize is a copy of our Workshop: “Seven Website Design Secrets to Get You More Sales” – that’s a video series together with workbook and resource guilde, so stick around for details on how you can enter the draw to win that competition prize later on in the interview.
Without further ado, let’s get into the Innovation Hive and get the Buzz from Nait Gallego and Ben Mitrovich.
Jürgen: Hi. I’m Jürgen Strauss from Innovabiz, and I’m very pleased to have here with me on today’s episode, I think we’re at Episode #10 of the InnovaBuzz podcast, we have Nait Gallego and Ben Mitrovich from Linkd Media Solutions and also from Body Press sites.
Linkd Media is a web development company who have offices in San Francisco and Sta. Barbara. Ben is actually from the North of California, he just told me, on a lake near the border to Oregon. Nait is based in Sta. Barbara. Welcome to the InnovaBuzz podcast, guys.
Nait: How are you doing? Thank you very much for having us on.
Ben: Thanks. Yeah, thank you for having us.
Jürgen: Now before we get going on that, I’d like to announce our competition today, which is a copy of my 7 Website Design Secrets To Get You More Sales video workshop. That’s a series of videos, together with a workbook and resources guide, so stay tuned later on in the interview where we’ll tell you how you can enter the draw to win that prize.
Before we learn more about some of the innovative things you guys are doing at Linkd Media and Bodypress, tell us something about yourselves. What did you want to be when you were young kids?
Ben: Actually I want to be a scientist when I was younger but then quickly fell in love with design. I remember getting a Macintosh, like one of the first Macintoshes, and they had some simple programs on there. I started messing around with digital design and took off from there as far as being in the UI and UX department now in Linkd Media.
Jürgen: Okay. That was Ben, right?
Ben: Yeah, that was Ben. Sorry.
Nait: This is Nait. Actually I wanted to be an architect and I always wanted to be an architect. I like the lines in architecture and the design of it, and actually I flipped it. I became a computer scientist. I studied computer science in school and that led us into developing on the Web.
Jürgen: Okay. When did you guys meet?
Nait: When did we meet? 2005? It’s a funny meeting actually. Our wives grew up with each other, and we always joked around because Ben was a designer and I was a developer. We always joked about creating a business together. We had the perfect tools and we started our business in two thousand seven…
Ben: Was that?
Nait: No, was it? Yeah maybe, yeah.
Ben: No, no we didn’t start that early. We kind of fiddled around. We did a couple of projects together but not official. I think it was in the next year that we actually filed for our papers to become legit, took it on 100%.
Jürgen: That was 2008, was it?
Jürgen: Yeah. Okay, so you’ve been going a little while. How did Linkd Media then come about? Were you in business before that or did you have jobs?
Ben: Yeah, I started off – went to Chico State in California and went there to be a videographer doing 3D animation. You could figure I started off with some background in video and animation and then I quickly got into post-editing and motion graphics for about 5 years. Heavy on the motion graphics so still doing design but more with the motion aspect, using After Effects and all Adobe stuff that they had and a lot of Avid and Final Cut Pro. I started just doing some freelance video production, post-production stuff and did some static images in Photoshop. Started picking up some clients and started making websites, so then I called on Nait. I said, “Hey, man, we got some projects that we need some development work. I could do the front end and do the designing end, and that was how that took off as far as coming from my background.
Nait: Yeah, the same. I actually was going to school at the time, finishing my computer science degree. Computer science doesn’t pay very well unless you have a degree. I was actually working part-time in IT, fixing computers and stuff like that. Yeah, when Ben gave me a call, we just decided to just go for it and start a business. It just took off from there. It worked out.
Jürgen: Yeah, fantastic. How did Bodypress come about then?
Ben: Bodypress is a funny one. Those who aren’t familiar with Beachbody, it’s a company that builds products around fitness. They build a product, like a home workout videos and things like this. We got into this by talking to friends who were into the product. They knew a couple of people who were high up in the business, and there were a lot of issues they were having with creating websites around the Beachbody model, which is selling the Beachbody products for Beachbody coaches, they’re called.
I don’t want to go in too much detail about what they do but they need websites, they need online marketing. We approached a coach and he was able to hear our ideas out and we built an automated product that answered a lot of their problems. We gave them a solution, and that’s how it started. It’s been evolving lately. I don’t know if you want to add on to that from your standpoint.
Nait: Yeah, they just needed a simple solution and there seems to be a lot of problems, especially for those who aren’t computer savvy and who don’t have all the time in the world to go figure out how to set up a website. We’re able to do that fairly quickly, and they just pay a monthly fee and they get customer support, hosting and a bunch of stuff like that that they can choose from. It just makes the solution easy and it gives them a place on the Web to represent themselves.
We leave it up to them as far as how they market themselves and all that stuff, but we also provide some resources, just some knowledge about how to get on the social platforms and start promoting yourself and drive traffic. We provide a little bit of knowledge – I guess you could say where they can’t just pick that up anywhere else. They get knowledge and they get a product, but they get a little knowledge and push in the right direction.
Jürgen: Okay. Basically, it’s a fully packaged website service for Beachbody?
Nait: Beachbody, right. Beachbody community, right.
Ben: Yeah. We’re not affiliated with Beachbody but we just provide a solution for people who are using it, so I don’t know if we correctly say that.
Jürgen: Yeah. There’s a big lesson in that, isn’t there? You came across a need and a problem that a certain community, a certain niche faced and you built a solution for it.
Jürgen: It always amazes me how few people actually do things in that sequence in business and how many people come back the other way around and say we’ve got this fabulous idea and then they try and make it work and try to force-feed it into a market somewhere even though there might not necessarily be a need or it might not be a good match to a need.
Ben: Right. This was a work in progress. We pushed ourselves into the niche to find the solution. We actually found more and more solutions within the niche, which I think really helped the product grow.
Jürgen: Presumably, it’s a fairly big community then and presumably they’re all in need of the same kind of website system so that you have an automated system where people can simply sign up and it’s more or less all done for them. They just have to add their content. Is that how it works?
Ben: Exactly, yep.
Nait: Yeah. We provide some video tutorials so that they just watch maybe like an hour, 1.5 hours that their website will be up and running. They can watch a bunch of other tutorials at their leisure if they want to learn more about specific sections in the backend of the portal and stuff like that. To get up and running probably takes them, if they just really focus and just run through them, like an hour, 1.5 hours instead of trying to Google search everything. It could be a headache. It just makes it a really easy process for them.
They’re getting the customer support. We’re always answering questions on a daily basis. We have a chat, they can chat to us through our website. If that’s not on, they can send us an email. We’re pretty good about responding within a couple of hours to 12 hours, like that so they’re pretty happy with the customer support. I think that’s the number one thing. If they have a question or they get stuck, we can come in and fix it for them.
Jürgen: Yeah, that’s great. If you go out and do something on your own and I know from experience with my customers how they very quickly get stuck if they try and do a lot on their own.
How do you describe what you guys do then in one sentence if people meet you for the first time?
Nait: We usually say basically just one-stop shop for Beachbody coaches. Hold on, let me try that again. We are a one-stop shop for your Beachbody website, is usually how we pitch that.
Jürgen: Yeah, which is very specific.
Jürgen: Okay. It’s good. What do you spend most of your time then doing day to day?
Ben: Yeah, recently we just had another developer so we’re going to kick our development over here and try to come out with new features and just really fine tune our process and make it even easier for everybody signing up. What we want to do is start adding some features where they could pay. A lot of these people don’t have enough time to write blogs, so maybe we can offer a small fee, like we can write a blog for you, just fill up this information.
We’re definitely trying to work on new themes. As trends change, style has changed and people are looking for the new, latest, hottest themes so we’re doing that. What me and Nait do for the most part right now is a lot of customer support, so it is starting to become a little time-consuming so we’re looking in the near future to hire someone just for customer support. Yeah it will take up a lot more time.
Jürgen: Yeah, so it sounds like it’s growing pretty rapidly then.
Nait: Yeah. It is growing. It’s kind of an exponential growth. When at first, it starts slow but then you have a referral program so you get to see that other than the top coaches that we’ve dealt with in the beginning who’ve been using us for their downline to … you start to see that like, “Oh, who’s this coach? I didn’t even know this coach.” A lot of outside coaches, if the word’s getting around and sometimes I think that’s some buzz. It’s really word of mouth that’s really trying to take off for us.
Jürgen: Yeah. That’s great. There’s a couple of really nifty lessons there obviously, getting testimonials from clients and the power of that for growing a business but also the challenge of most web developers I guess is getting content from their clients. That’s clearly a need that if you fulfill that one could really help grow the business even more.
Nait: Definitely, yeah. We get a lot of requests around content. As you know, it is hard to get content from clients.
Jürgen: Yes, one of the biggest challenges. Is there something that worries you about the business that keeps you awake at night?
Nait: Oh yeah, everything!
Ben: Just knowing that it could be better and there’s improvements that we need to make on it with regards to slowly integrating right now. We’re so busy with other things as well. We have other projects we’re working on, so it’s just trying to juggle everything, keep that moving forward I guess is the biggest challenge. It is moving forward. You just have to be patient and keep your vision on the front of your mind and just try to reach little goals and just get it done.
Not get discouraged because sometimes you just look at the big picture and you could be that’s so much to do and I don’t even know where to start. It’s easy to like I don’t really want to … it’s so intimidating in the sense that there’s all these things that need to be done. It really does help just to take the small steps, and then before you know it it’s done and you’re starting to see the returns on it so just keep juggling forward.
Jürgen: Yeah, gets a bit overwhelming at times. I remember my kids had a music teacher once and one of the things she said and it sticks with me quite a lot, she said, “You don’t eat the whole pizza at once. You eat it piece by piece.”
Ben: Yeah, definitely. I like that.
Jürgen: What do you see as the biggest challenges in building your business?
Ben: We do a lot of client service as well on the side so sometimes we’ll be a little distracted with that, helping out some other companies with really big projects, kind of a one-time thing with those companies. It can be distracting from putting more work into the Bodypress, but like I said we’ve been improving our company. We’re hiring more people so now we’re able to take on those new client services projects and may now being able to put work back into Bodypress to keep that thing going.
I think the hardest part is just juggling the time and trying to keep everyone happy. It seems like a lot of people have different ideas of what they want for the website. We listen but one idea isn’t enough for us to make a huge overhaul on everything, we try to see what everybody is saying and then we just add up the pros and cons and make a decision on what new feature we want to add and who’s going to benefit it the most as far as the amount of people who need it.
Jürgen: Yeah, I could see that being a challenge, trying to please everybody.
Ben: Right. I think you need to take into consideration you’re not going to please everybody. As a first starter you’re like this is my baby and I want to make everyone happy, and you get overwhelmed, you get stressed out, trying to make this little change that really only one or 2 people are asking out of a bunch and you needed to step back and ask if this really is worth my time or should I be investing somewhere else.
Putting out surveys to see where people are happy and aren’t happy and getting a big chunk of a pie chart to see where you really need to focus your energy because the a lot of this people contacting you, there might only be one or two people that have something that most people aren’t really expressing about. The surveys, they’re huge to help dial it in and we figured that out about halfway through the process. We wish we would have started with that because I think we did waste some time on some features that weren’t really needed as a community with these people.
Jürgen: Yeah. I was going to ask how you make decisions on what new features to bring in and so that’s great. A lot of surveys.
Ben: Yeah. Surveymonkey I think is a good free service. You can easily start getting information about what they need.
Jürgen: Yeah. How big is the community that you’re serving?
Nait: A lot of people come and go. It’s one of those, so I would say we’ve had a total of maybe 600 come through but we’re probably about 250 strong right now and growing as they come and go. It’s a lot of turnover but the people that are legit and take their business seriously, they stay because they like the service. A lot of people come in there and they do try it out for a couple of months and they decide they don’t want to go into that business, the Beachbody business, so naturally they’re just going to quit. They’re not going to want to pay you for a website they’re not utilizing. There’s a lot of turnaround but as long as the graph is going up, I think we’re happy and it’s only going to get better. If it is easier we can give them more features.
Jürgen: Yeah. Is that based locally? Is there a potential for spreading throughout the USA?
Nait: Yeah, I think the Beachbody, they market to USA and Canada. I think they’re heading over to Europe so it might branch out over there as well.
Jürgen: That’s exciting. How do you keep balanced with all this stuff going on, running several businesses and building a new business? How do you keep balanced and what do you do when you’re not working to find that balance?
Ben: Yeah, that’s I think the toughest part about juggling everything, right? I think with anything, especially being an entrepreneur and owning your own business, you have to keep yourself accountable otherwise you’ll just lose track of things. You have to set goals, realistic goals, measurable goals. Also you have to keep yourself organized. With so many goals and so many deadlines, keeping yourself organized is definitely key. I always set a task list for myself and I just checked them off as I get done and I keep myself accountable. This is my day-to-day task list, this is my week task list. I haven’t gone out to month yet but we do have the bigger overall goals that we always have. I keep a picture by my desk that keeps me focused. It’s the house by the beach picture. Yeah, I think keeping yourself accountable definitely is number one for me.
Nait: Yeah, I agree.
Jürgen: What do you use for task planning and project planning?
Ben: We use Podio. It’s a great service. It’s a free service. I believe it’s developed in Europe and then Citrix GoToMeeting, Citrix Online bought them.
Jürgen: That’s right.
Ben: It’s great. It’s a free service. It’s very robust and easily customizable. We went through a lot of project management systems and we found that a lot of them were great but there were just a few things that we were needing a little bit more of, so Podio just worked really well for us.
Jürgen: Did you customize it? Build custom apps and things for your need?
Ben: Yeah. We built some custom apps and we set them up. It’s working so far. We have used also Asana in the past, which we do like. It’s a little more simple but we’re still using Podio day to day. Also we use Google docs, which is now I guess Google Drive. We also use that, which is great, so those are 2 main tools.
Nait: Yeah, I think it’s good to know that we can put or make custom apps and that might sound intimidating to some people but it’s really like simple like here they give you a selection and stuff and then you can make it and word it so it works for what you’re trying to do and then everybody’s on the same page. Anybody can go in there and make their own app. It’s pretty straightforward. I drag and drop this feature here and this feature here and save, and now that’s an app in your dashboard. It’s like deliverables or tasks or web pages or big projects, and then you can assign people and there can be accountability for getting deliverables done. You could see progress bars and all that. I know Bootcamp I think does something very similar, but I felt Podio, the UI was a little nicer. It looked like it’s a little more flexible what it could do.
Jürgen: Yeah. I played with it for a little while with our team and one of the things I really liked about it was the social interface on there. It was a little bit like Facebook and it allows commenting – so if one of the team members made a comment or asked the question, it encouraged that interaction, which is great for a remote team. There are a couple of things that we needed at the time that Podio didn’t have so we ended up not going with it.
Nait: Right. I feel like it’s hard to find the perfect solution. You just have to weigh the pros and cons and just pick one and just make it work. There’s still some things we wish Podio could do and maybe it can, like they’re always adding features and it’s hard to keep up with it sometimes. It’s a pretty cool tool.
Jürgen: All right. Do you read a lot of books? Have you read any books recently that you could recommend to our audience?
Nait: Go ahead, Ben.
Ben: Yeah, I was reading this one. I can’t remember the title. I’m still going through it. It’s how to build like a Lean startup. I’ll go ahead and look for that title, but it pretty much tells you from the … because I’ve always been in the design and user interface and you’re really starting to work with user experience and I never really knew the difference between user experience and UI. I kind of knew but it mashed together a little bit, so it really goes in to user experience and how to build these Lean approaches to things so you’re not investing so much of your resource at that time – something that might not kick off. You just get it up there and get it running and see how users are interacting with it.
I’m learning more, especially with building websites, the traditional way was always to put waterfall way. You do design, you wait for the design to get approved then you go into development. Now they’re saying you need to do wireframe and once the wireframe gets approved, start doing the development right away while you’re doing design so you’re not waiting for certain sections to update and then constantly have users playing with it through this whole process. By the time you finish, you’re finishing quicker and you’re having a better product. I’ll see if I can find that title for you. It’s a pretty good read.
Jürgen: Yeah, great, thanks. What about you, Nait?
Nait: Yeah, I’m actually reading a book right now that was actually referred to me, which I’m really enjoying. I’m not done with it yet so I guess it’s not a full referral yet but Duct Tape Marketing, which has been really good so far.
Jürgen: Yeah, I actually bought that. It’s on my list of to-reads, which is pretty big.
Nait: Yeah, same here. I have a few on that list as well. It’s hard to get the time to get those, but a couple of chapters a night. Been plucking away at it, but so far so good. I really like it. It’s definitely geared towards small businesses and I like that aspect.
Jürgen: Yeah, okay. If you had a magic wand and could just wave it to fix one thing in the business, what would that be?
Nait: One thing in the business. Man, that’s so hard. Can it be 5? No, just kidding. Let’s see, that’s a good question. What do you think, Ben?
Ben: That was a question, I mean – I feel like everything could be a little better.
Nait: Yeah, everything can always be better, especially when you created it. It’s never good enough.
Nait: I would say customer service. If we could just get rid of that, that’s my vote. If we could just yeah, have that process automated so we wouldn’t have to deal with it so much, I don’t know.
Ben: Right, well yeah – two ways we can do that. One would be to make it so simple. We saw some other platforms out there and we looked at their backend and stuff and just taking it to that next level whereas it’s just so straightforward, like there shouldn’t be any questions. It would be nice to have someone hired to answer those questions because they’re probably going to be the same questions over and over. We have a customer support forum, but it seems like a lot of users never go there because we have a lot of the answers there but they still seem to keep asking the same question.
Nait: Yeah, some people just need that handholding I guess.
Jürgen: Yeah, that’s right. It’s often easy just to ask a question rather than go searching the frequently asked questions or the documentation. All right, what do you see as the risks and opportunities in doing something innovative and a little bit outside the box like you’re doing?
Nait: I think the biggest risk is failure, right, and I guess there’s 2 sides to that. There’s the ego, which is hurt, and then there’s the monetary issues, how much you’re investing in your product. There’s the failure.
I think there’s always a bigger reward in trying things out. I’m a big believer in everything’s a good idea. If you have the means, if you can build it lean, try it out, do it. If you don’t do it, it’ll never happen and you never know if it was going to be a good idea or not.
Jürgen: That’s right, yeah.
Ben: Right. You always learn something and you could take from it. The next project is always going to benefit from it. I just do it even if you’re just like dreading it, you’re afraid or you’re not sure, just go ahead and do it. Just put a little time into it if you don’t have a lot of time and you never know. Like Nait said, it could take off, something might catch a buzz and …
Jürgen: That’s right, yeah. What is it they say? It’s guaranteed to fail if you don’t try.
Nait: Right, exactly. I think Ben made a good point too. I guess there’s no true failure because I think no matter what, you always learn. We’ve been lucky enough, the things that we’ve done haven’t been complete failures but there have been setbacks. By learning what those setbacks were, we were able to then move forward.
Jürgen: That’s right. My business coach says to me there’s no such thing as failure. It’s just feedback.
Jürgen: Yeah. All right. It’s time I think to go on to the Buzz, which is our innovation round. There’s about 5 or 6 questions that I’ll ask. Hopefully you’ll give us really brilliant one-line answers that are going to blow the audience away with your insight and knowledge.
Nait: All right, I’m ready.
Jürgen: No pressure! Okay, first of all, what’s the number one thing you think people need to do to be more innovative in their business?
Nait: I think just try your ideas out. Just don’t be afraid of failure. Failure’s a big hurdle, or the fear of failure is a big hurdle.
Ben: Yeah. I think Nait’s right. Me and Nait will spend a whole morning just talking up ideas and getting really excited about it. Since we have to declare it already, some of those ideas lose momentum and never form. I think it’s important, but we have a lot on our plate right now and we always have those ideas and we save them and we’re going to probably come back to them later. Actually act on those ideas and not just, like they sound great but actions speak louder than words. You actually have to do something to make it happen or it’s just not going to happen on its own, even though it might be the best idea. You might be telling your friends about this great idea but 3 days later, you lose motivation or interest. Try to condition yourself to just do it and try to at least put in a couple of hours, even a week if you’re that busy, but keep it going, keep the momentum going.
Jürgen: Yeah, that’s great advice. What’s the best thing you’ve done to develop new ideas or new products?
Nait: I think like Ben mentioned, we sit down with one another and we just bounce the ideas off until they sound good I guess.
Ben: We’ll argue a lot. You want to play devil’s advocate and hopefully you have someone you could talk to. It’s easier to talk to somebody and talk out your ideas in real time, because a lot of times Nait will bring up something I didn’t think about – my gosh, it sounded good in my head but now that you bring up these other ideas and things that could be problems or cons. Maybe it’s not a worthy investment. Yeah, I think it’s great especially if you could go to lean hour something that’s really simple. The technology is there. You got WordPress. You could do something really quick with WordPress, do a little advertising on Facebook if you want to invest just a little money and you’ll be surprised at the reaction you might get if the idea is good enough.
Jürgen: Get feedback from the users.
Ben: Yeah, right. Feedback is definitely crucial.
Jürgen: It’s great. What’s your favorite tool or system for innovation then? It sounds like it’s brainstorming back and forth between the 2 of you?
Ben: Yeah. As far as tools, I love uxpin.com. It’s great for putting together some ideas. Definitely great for clients, showing clients some wireframes, but it takes the stuff further from wireframes. I’ve actually developed full-on pages in that and it’s a lot easier than Photoshop, and I think some of the other online designing tools. It’s a little more pricey. I think it’s like USD39 but it’s totally worth it. We have used a couple wireframing tools. It’s great because it’s online. You can share with clients and they could share, they can share, there can be comments and you can make different versions and quickly move things around. They could watch it update on the fly, so first doing something on Photoshop, exporting and sending an email and waiting for feedback. It’s just a great tool and we’re cutting out a lot of time if you’re trying to prototype some kind of digital media.
Jürgen: Yeah. Okay, that sounds good. I didn’t know that one.
Ben: I better do Skype. I’m going to go with Skype.
Jürgen: Yeah. With you being the two of you being located fair distance apart, I guess Skype, gets a lot of use.
Ben: Yeah. We’re in a big debt to Skype.
Jürgen: Okay. What’s the best way you know to keep a project or a client on track?
Nait: I think using the project management system, keeping yourself accountable on the deadlines. You got to stay organized. You got to be accountable.
As far as clients, it’s tough sometimes, but with using the project management system it can update you about deadlines for the client and just reminding the client I need to get that content.
Ben: Yeah, and like a little baby threat. If we don’t get this content by this date, we’re not going to be able to meet the deadline that we agreed to. You got to let them know upfront, like we need to have this content by this date or we can’t meet the deadline because they just seem to think their content is not going to take that long to put together. I don’t think a lot of clients understand that having content is a huge part of the design and development process. It helps us flesh out any flaws or anything that needs to be figured out as far as user experience and the UI. I think it’s important that you’re really firm with that and let them know there’s going to be a delay in the deliverable of the website if you don’t get that to me.
If you have a problem with that, I think they’re pretty cool. You just got to be firm. I think a lot of people when they first start, they pretty much bend at the client’s will because they’re just grateful to have this job and they want to please the client but I think you got to start putting on your big boy pants on. Let them know, we need this content or it’s not going to happen when you want it to.
Jürgen: That’s right, yeah. It’s good partnership, isn’t it?
Jürgen: Do you actually share the Podio project by client or …
Ben: We don’t. We haven’t yet. I think yeah, I guess it depends. We have all sorts of different clients. There are some clients we do actually share it with for bigger projects, but for the most part we actually use Google Drive a lot with our clients and we find that that works really well.
Jürgen: To share documents and …
Nait: Yeah, exactly. Spreadsheets and docs I guess is the only thing we really use, yeah.
Ben: Yeah, because a lot of people are familiar with Google stuff and Google Drive and Word because you just throw Word applications on there or like spreadsheets from Microsoft. It converts it for you and all that stuff. That’s great but as far as Podio, sometimes you would have to teach a client and it’s just perfect. There’s a couple of clients that we’re ongoing with so it’s worth it to teach them if they’re going to be an ongoing client. If it’s a one-time deal, it’s probably not worth it and just using it for internal use between me and Nait and some of our developers.
Jürgen: That’s good. What do you see as the future for Bodypress then?
Nait: Yeah, I think what Ben mentioned, making it easier. I think as the Web evolves more and more, everything is moving towards the Web. You see products come out all the time and they’re just very simple, very elegant UI, user interface, and UX, user experience. I think the future of Bodypress is just making it extremely simple with a very elegant approach.
Jürgen: Okay. You mentioned earlier about the potential perhaps to grow with the …
Nait: Yeah, it’s hard. They’re 2 very, very similar …
Jürgen: Trying to think of the service. As that expands into other countries, there’s a big potential for growth for you there as well.
Nait: Definitely, yeah.
Jürgen: Yeah, so that’s really exciting. What do you say is the future for that industry? It’s essentially fitness and personal training, right?
Nait: Yeah, I think there’s a huge potential. I think you find more and more, at least here in the States people are becoming more conscious and aware of the food they eat and their day-to-day exercises. If anything, it’s becoming more and more popular.
It’s also nice too because one thing about the Beachbody products is that they’re not as expensive as going to the gym yet you’re still getting the same kind of results. I think it’s really helpful for individuals as well who maybe struggle with those kind of issues.
Jürgen: Okay. Do you see a role there in that industry for the Internet of Things as you start to get machines remote controlled through devices and so on?
Nait: Yeah. I think you’ll probably see more and more integrations with online services moving forward with the products. Right now I don’t think they’re doing a lot of online stuff so as you see, there’s a market for our own business, but I think moving forward I think it will be integrated more and more moving forward with the Internet of moving thing.
Jürgen: Yeah, certainly. The fitness industry in some sense has led the charge there for the social apps like I don’t know, Map My Ride is one I’m familiar with or Strava.
Nait: Strava, yeah. Strava’s a great one.
Jürgen: Yeah, which you basically record your activity, whether that be a run or a cycle, and upload it to the Internet and share it with your friends and buddies and compare times on various segments and so on.
Nait: Yeah, Strava’s really nice. I actually use that myself – after my rides.
Jürgen: Okay. We’ll have to connect up on that.
Jürgen: All right. Just want to remind our listeners and audience about our competition today. I’m giving away a copy of my 7 Website Design Secrets To Get You More Sales, so that’s a video workshop together with a resources guide and workbook. Now what we’d like you to do to go into the draw to win that is leave a comment under the video and tell us some of the innovative ways that you’ve used the Internet or innovative products perhaps that you’ve used on the Internet related to this area, so personal coaching, personal training or fitness. That might be things like Strava, we’d like you to actually show us an innovative use of those tools that everybody knows about or if you have a contribution, something that perhaps isn’t as widely known then we’d love to hear about that as well. Perhaps that gives Nait and Ben some new ideas going forward for Bodypress. I’ll get Nait and Ben to come by in a couple of weeks and award the prize.
Nait: Awesome. That sounds good.
Jürgen: Yeah, good. Wrapping up, guys, what’s the number one piece of advice you’d give to any business or business owner that wants to be a leader in their field and in innovation?
Ben: I think we kind of touched on the momentum. When you give them a good idea or you’re working on a project and you have some setbacks, I think it’s always try to just keep that momentum. I think momentum is the biggest factor which I think for a lot of people get either discouraged or just lose the buzz that they’ve originally got when they first thought about it, whether it was in the shower or after they go for a run. I know those times, I get really excited about stuff.
A lot of times it gave a me a couple of hours after a run, I lose my high. I think maybe not or I don’t have that motivation anymore. I think you got to build some discipline to just move forward. Like anything else, you have to work at it and build that almost like muscle. Keep moving forward, keep that momentum, even though you might have lost it initially. You’ll see the returns on that as long as you keep doing that, keeping focused.
Nait: Yeah. I think position yourself as the top individual in the industry, keep working at it. It doesn’t happen overnight. We’ve had Bodypress for 2 years and we still have the buzz but we’re still growing. We’re still positioning ourselves and working towards that. Yeah, continue to position yourself as number one, the best, the go-to in the industry and don’t let failure be a wall, be a hurdle for you.
Jürgen: Yeah, it’s feedback.
Nait: Go for it. Yeah, get the feedback. Survey, survey, survey.
Jürgen: Okay. That’s great. Thanks Nait and Ben. It’s been a real privilege. Where can our guests reach out and say thank you for sharing all that information with us today?
Ben: They can go to our website, bodypresssites.com. They can click on the Contact link. They can contact us that way or they can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jürgen: All right. We’ll have those links underneath the video when we publish the blog post.
Jürgen: Finally, I always ask this question. Who would you like to see me interview on future InnovaBuzz podcast and why?
Nait: That’s a good question. Let’s see. I wasn’t ready for that one. Let’s see, how about Troy Dean? Can you get him on?
Jürgen: Okay. I can ask. Troy Dean from Video User Manuals, look out Troy. We’re coming to get you on the InnovaBuzz podcast courtesy of Nait Gallego.
Ben: Just to tell you that book I was reading, it’s called the Lean Startup by Eric Ries.
Jürgen: Yeah. I thought of that because I actually purchased that one recently on Amazon as an ebook, and it’s on my list as well. Yeah, I’ll have a link to all of the book suggestions and the contact links and so on underneath the shownotes for this episode so it’ll all be there.
Nait and Ben, thanks so much for spending time with us today. You’ve been very generous and it’s been really fascinating to learn about Bodypress and how you’ve recognized an opportunity there in a very tight niche, but potentially big opportunity and then addressed a need there and built a business around that.
Ben: Awesome, yeah.
Nait: Yeah, no problem. Thank you. Thank you so much for having us, Jürgen. It’s been awesome.
Jürgen: Yeah, and I wish you all the best with this and also with your other businesses as well of course. I look forward to seeing how things develop in the future.
Nait: Awesome. We’ll keep you updated.
Jürgen: Okay. Thanks, Nait. Thanks, Ben.
I hope you enjoyed meeting Ben and Nait as much as I enjoyed interviewing them on the podcast.
They certainly are a dynamic duo, who have taken an idea to solve a need in a niche market and deliver a product and service that meets that need better than any other solution available. And they’ve done that without a huge up front investment, by employing a lean startup model.
Of course, you can subscribe to this Podcast via iTunes or Stitcher, so that you’ll never miss a future episode.
All the show notes for this episode will be at innovabiz.com.au/bodypress, that is B-O-D-Y-P-R-E-S-S, all lowercase, all one word, innovabiz.com.au/bodypress for all of the links and everything we spoke about in this episode. Remember, leave your comments underneath the video for your chance to win a copy of the Seven Website Design Secrets workshop.
Leave a comment under the video and tell us some of the innovative ways that you’ve used the Internet or innovative products perhaps that you’ve used on the Internet related to this area, so personal coaching, personal training or fitness. If you leave a comment under the video, I’ll get Nait and Ben to swing by in a few weeks and award that prize.
Nait suggested that I get Troy Dean from Video User Manuals and WP Elevation, to be on a future podcast. So, Troy, keep an eye on your Inbox for an invitation from me, for the Innovabuzz Podcast!
If you like these podcast episodes, please give us a five star review over at iTunes. It really does help to get more listeners and to share this information with a bigger audience. And I really do want to share these gems, that people so generously share with us on the podcast with as many people as I can.
So, Until next time.
Remember, if you don’t innovate, you stagnate, so think big, be adventurous and innovate on!