Who are you and what business did you start?
We are Lee Linden and Yifat Shirben – two best friends who share a passion for the power of words.
A passion that led us to found Punct – a strategic writing agency that helps businesses harness this power to get the desired actions, behaviours and experiences out of every customer touchpoint (with a focus on UX writing for digital interfaces).
What’s your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?
We’ve been working with dozens of startups and tech companies over the years (under our other hat called “Flint & Spark”), helping them solve their main marketing need – to better explain themselves and their solution while establishing their brand. But after a few years, we realised that all of this hard work on messaging was left in the marketing front and didn’t flow into their actual product. Their apps and digital interfaces left their users/customers feeling confused, frustrated and with no connection to the brand they originally met on the well-crafted website.
Armed with this new understanding, we started Punct and set out on a mission to help companies focus and improve their in-product communication and to turn their online words into bottom-line numbers.
Describe the process of launching the business.
We spent a lot of time researching the market and understanding who needs these types of services, the exact needs, the gaps, and the current alternatives. Once we could articulate it clearly, we started building the brand around it (the name, the visuals, the tone & style etc.). Then we created several content pieces that helped us launch the business and used them to make the official announcement to our professional and personal network. We lined up catch-up calls with as many people as we could and started spreading the word.
Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?
By far, word of mouth has been our most significant deal flow contributor to date, but we always use content and adding value as a proactive way to keep the flame going. We found this is the best way to prove our expertise, demonstrate our capabilities and keep ourselves top of mind. We are constantly holding free webinars, publishing tips and how-tos and always making sure our content is not only top-notch, but also very tangible.
How are you doing today and what does the future look like?
We’re slowly gaining momentum and helping more and more businesses improve the way their products communicate with their users. We’ve been working with various companies across the globe and even scored some blue-chip brands (which we cannot disclose yet). We enjoy seeing how our words impact key metrics like engagement, conversions, operational cost, and brand loyalty, and in the future we would like to be able to teach these skills to other people in a structured way.
Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?
We learnt that focus is very important. While targeting a very specific niche might seem counter-intuitive to growing the business, it actually helps position you as an expert and make sure you spend your time and resources on the right places.
What platform/tools do you use for your business?
As a small team of two, we use all the “usual suspects” – Canva to whip up quick images, Hubspot for sales, Mailchimp for emails, Zoom for meetings/webinars, Trello and Toggl to track tasks and time, Xero for accounting, Grammarly for editing purposes, and that’s pretty much it. Oh, and our Whatsapp is exploding with messages… I guess that’s what you get when you mix business with friendship 😊
What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?
For general consumer behavioural insights, we really loved reading “Thinking Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman, “Predictably Irrational” by Dan Ariely, “start with Why” by Simon Sinek, and “Play Bigger” by Al Ramadan and his co-authors.
When it comes to UX writing – the best beginners book out there is “Microcopy: The Complete Guide by Kinneret Yifrah”
Other than this, we are part of online UX writers and marketing communities and consume a lot of information shared in these groups from different sources.
Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?
Sow as many seeds as you can, every day, even if you’re too busy with your actual clients. Some seeds will take months to grow and some will never materialise, but if you would wait till you get to that unavoidable down-time, you will quickly find yourself scrambling around for leads, acting out of survival mode and losing the much-needed focus to run your business.
Where can we go to learn more?
You can check out www.punct.com.au or simply contact us (firstname.lastname@example.org) and talk to us directly (we will be happy to let you know when we’re running our next free webinar).