Seminar: Build Your Plan for Success Online

Fred David Harper | WP Business Tips

Hi! We’re Fred, David, and Harper from WP Business Tips. We’re here to help you make and hone a success plan for your website project: a concrete, detailed, three-part plan that will help you meet your goals for your website.

How Much is a Successful Website Worth?

It’s worth a lot. A thriving website can bring you:

  • Unlimited exposure and revenue.
  • Immense support for an existing business.
  • Deep engagement with a worldwide audience.

These benefits are what everybody has in mind when they get online. But there’s another crucial question that far fewer people ask:

How Much Does a Failed Website Cost?

money and time to create a website | wp business tips seminar

It’s extremely expensive. A failed website will cost you:

  • Thousands of dollars.
  • Dozens or hundreds of hours of time.
  • The missed opportunities to achieve what a well-planned website could have.

The bottom line: Any website you start should have the best chance of success that you can possibly give it.

Now here’s the bad news…

Most New Websites are Positioned to Fail

As unfortunate as this is, it’s true. Most sites will never earn subtantial revenue, gain a large following, improve the site owners’ existing businesses, or meet the owners’ other hopes.

We’ve spent years in the shoes of new site owners: we’re web consultants who have advised on and developed websites for all kinds of clients, and we’re also entrepreneurs who have started numerous projects ourselves. Over the dozens and dozens of websites we’ve worked on, we’ve realized a very simple pattern:

Most websites fail because their site owners don’t have a plan for success.

Simple as that sounds, it’s true: Most people pay good money to put their websites up without understanding the basics of how the internet works, and without asking any of the foundational questions that could give their sites a fighting chance.

Strange, right? What’s going on here?

Why People Venture Online Without Good Plans

It isn’t really their fault! People don’t have plans for their websites for a good reason:

The web is so complicated that most site owners don’t know how to translate their inspiration into a realistic site plan.

A website’s technical details alone (“Managed or VPS hosting? CMS site or greenfield web app?”) take a professional to understand—and they’re not even what we’re talking about. Behind all those technical questions are foundational principles of how things get done on the internet, and it’s these principles that most site owners never become aware of.

Do you ever have these kinds of questions about your website or idea:


“How can I tell if my site idea will work?”
“How complete should my idea be before I seek out customers?”
“How do I know if my growth plans are realistic?”
“Should I offer subscriptions or single purchases?”
“Should I seek paid signups now, or grow first?”


“How can I rank well in search engines?”
“Why are so few people visiting my site?”
“How can I get people to choose me over my competitors?”
“What do people think of my site/idea?”
“How can I find new readers/users/customers?”


“How much will my website cost?”
“How long until this project pays for itself?”
“Do I really need a blog/social media profile/etc.?”
“I’ve gotten very conflicting price estimates, what’s up with that?”
“Isn’t there a quicker way to succeed online?”

If any of these questions have been stumping you, you’re probably struggling to put together a coherent plan in the online environment.

Now here’s the good news: You can plan for success online. We can help.

The Seminar: Planning for Success Online

“I have a had a blog for a number of years, but it wasn’t until my conversations with Fred that I began to understand how that can contribute more meaningfully to my professional goals in today’s online world. Thank you for helping me ask the right questions!” -Alex, WP Business Tips Consulting Client

“I feel very encouraged and excited about what’s possible, and I see a lot of avenues for moving forward that I hadn’t keyed into before. I’m deeply grateful for your time and expertise.” -Geoff, WP Business Tips Consulting Client

“Thank you so much for your help and advice! I got more out of this than I would have thought possible.” -Emma, WP Business Tips Consulting Client

Let us unlock the world of online business for you in our afternoon seminar!

Here’s the schedule:

david hayes | wp business tips1. How the Internet Works (Abridged) With David Hayes

To succeed on the internet, understand the internet.

In this lightning talk, David Hayes will bring you up to speed on the key principles of how business gets done on the internet, including:

  • The different kinds of web projects: informational site, e-commerce site, web app, mobile app, and what to know about each one.
  • What SEO is and isn’t, and why it can never substitute for a solid marketing plan.
  • The truth that “Just because it’s online, doesn’t mean anyone will ever see it”—and what it means to market your site.
  • The Long Tail, sales pipelines, conversions, and how website visitors actually become customers.
  • The lean model, validation, and the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) as crucial principles to get your idea out of your garage and into the world.

About David Hayes:

David is a professional web consultant and web entrepreneur. He writes about WordPress development at WPShout and elsewhere, and authors a popular article series on programming at Press Up, including, most recently, an article on defining software quality that was widely shared and read over 50,000 times within a week of its publication.

David has spoken at multiple conferences on principles of WordPress and PHP development. Here is his talk at WordCamp in Boston about theme creep, a widespread technical problem in WordPress themes.

Fred Meyer | WP Business Tips2. Strategic Plan Setup with Fred Meyer

Every project deserves a clear plan.

In this session, Fred Meyer will explain how to build a strategic plan that turns your inspiration into concrete, measurable goals and defined steps to meet them. You’ll also learn how to identify and test the key assumptions and risks that come with your website, and quickly adapt your site to changing information. You’ll learn how to:

  • Develop a vision statement: a succinct description of what, fundamentally, you want this site to accomplish.
  • Turn vision into goals by refining your general vision into a set of concrete, realistic, measurable outcomes.
  • Develop goals into implementation steps: based on the general patterns of successful businesses online, understand what concrete actions meeting your goals will require.
  • Plan for evidence gathering, validation, and iteration: identify and test the key assumptions your site strategy is founded on, and revise that strategy quickly and intelligently as new information comes in.
  • Understand strategic risk: what’s most likely to go wrong, and what can you do about it?

About Fred Meyer:

Fred is a professional web consultant and entrepreneur. He is cofounder and COO of Medivate, a web startup that took fourth place out of more than 80 entrants in the 2013 Tufts University Business Plan Contest, and which has helped people stay motivated to meditate more than 10,000 hours since 2012

Fred is also cofounder of Press Up, a web development and consulting agency that saved clients over $1 million in 2014.

Here is Fred talking about the foundations of a successful website plan.

Harper Phillips | WP Business Tips3. Marketing Plan Magic with Harper Phillips

Marketing is everything; the rest is details.

In this session, Harper Phillips will explore how to develop a realistic marketing plan that will allow you to reach and connect with your target audience. You’ll learn to:

  • Define your target audience: the specific group that you need to connect with to meet your goals.
  • Understand and plan the marketing channels—both online and offline—that you’ll use to connect with your target audience.
  • Articulate your market positioning: how you wish to position yourself relative to other people doing similar things. What successes can you duplicate, and what makes your site unique?
  • Plan for marketing validation and evidence gathering: quickly and cheaply validating your target audience’s interest, as well as your ability to connect with them through the channels you’ve chosen.
  • Understand marketing risk: the elements of the marketing plan that are the most untested and most likely to fail.

About Harper Phillips

Harper is a digital marketing professional. She is the head of marketing at WPShout, where she helped to grow the online mailing list to over 2,500 subscribers, and doubled Twitter and Facebook followers in less than six months. She has also helped the WP Business Tips mailing list to double in size approximately every three months.

In addition to her work with WP Business Tips, Harper is a songwriter and has released two independently funded albums (via Kickstarter).  Here’s one of her early experiments with producing YouTube videos- a ukulele contest entry that received over 30,000 views:

4. Resource Plan Realism and Tying it All Together (Full Staff)

In this session, the full WP Business Tips staff will itegrate Seminar sessions 1 through 3 to

  • Map your strategy to needed technologies (such as WordPress or a custom web application), and your marketing channels to marketing routines (such as weekly blog posts and a daily social media schedule).
  • Understand common technical and marketing profiles for online projects, and compare your own resource plan to these templates.
  • Understand your site costs in both dollars and hours, one-time and ongoing
  • Understand resource validation: how you can quickly confirm that the site will require the resources you think it will.
  • Analyze resource risk: forecasting the likelihood, potential sources, and severity unexpected costs.
  • Loop back around: understand how your three plans influence each other, and how you’ll have to refine them together all three form a coherent whole.

Seminar Details

  • We’ll meet by Google Hangout. If you’re not familiar with Hangouts, we’ll be happy to help.
  • The four sessions of the seminar will be held back-to-back, with short breaks between.
  • Each session will be around a 30-minute presentation, plus time throughout for Q&A.
  • Attendance is limited to 8 people per seminar.
  • Cost is $199, backed by our 100%, no-questions-asked money-back guarantee if you don’t think you’re getting your money’s worth. (We don’t think that’ll happen.)

Additional Benefits for Seminar Attendees:

This seminar, by itself, can help save you thousands of dollars and months of effort. But the benefits don’t stop there. We’re also happy to offer:

Step-By-Step Site Plan Worksheets

We’ll provide detailed Strategic, Marketing, and Resource Plan worksheets that walk you through each step of building out your inspiration into a viable website idea.

40% Off Our One-On-One Consulting Package

If you attend the seminar and complete the Site Plan Worksheets, we’re happy to offer you 40% off our regular one-on-one consulting package: From $499 to $299 for a one-hour consult.

In one-on-one consulting, we take a close look at your site idea, and the quickest route to validating it. This is also where we build out a detailed technical plan that specifies every technical step your developer will need to take to get the best result for your site.

We’re happy to offer this discount to seminar attendees: we won’t be starting from scratch, and that’s really valuable to us.

A Free Domain Name and a Year of Free Hosting

Hosting is one of the most consistent costs for a new website. Through our partnership with Web Hosting Hub, we’ll take that cost to ZERO for your first year—saving you more than $100, no strings attached.

What If I Don’t Love the Seminar?

That’s easy. If you sign up and don’t love the seminar, have to cancel beforehand, or anything else, we offer a 100% no-questions-asked money back guarantee. By the way: you get to keep the worksheets, consulting package discount, and free year of hosting, as a gesture of appreciation for checking us out. You have nothing to lose in the truest sense of the phrase.

What If I’d Like to Learn a Bit More First?

That’s wonderful! If you join our mailing list, you’ll get a free article every Thursday. You can also follow us on Twitter. Look around the site, too! There’s a lot of great stuff on here.

Or feel free to drop us a line at