Blog Friday Q&A

Friday Q & A: How to Deal With Writer’s Block, Can a New Business Succeed Without Blogging, and How to Handle Onboarding for Customers Who Want Their Hands Held

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Every Friday, we’re answering your questions about business, startups, customer success and more.

Happy Friday!

In our new Groove Friday Q & A segment, we’re answering any questions that you have about, well, anything.

A huge thank you to John N. Robinson, Iulian and James McBryan for this week’s questions.

Check out this week’s answers below, and jump in with your own thoughts in the comments!

How Do You Deal With Writer’s Block?

Nora Roberts is one of the most successful authors of romance novels of all time, with more than 209 books published.

I’m not exactly in her demographic, and I can’t say that I’ve ever read her work, but I have one of her quotes saved forever in my notes: “I can fix a bad page, but I can’t fix a blank page.”

The way I deal with writer’s block is that I never let myself deal with it. Having writer’s block means that you’re making the choice between writing or not.

If you change the way you think about writing and shift the question to “am I going to write a good page or a bad page?”, you can change your output in a massive way.

Either way, you’ve got a page.

So if I’m having trouble thinking about what to write, I just write anything. I might simply take the working title of the post (the first thing I always write) and rewrite it in as many different ways as possible, leaving me with a full page of lines that essentially mean the same thing.

While nobody wants to read that, it’s something. And often, simply producing output like that will trigger creativity and the juice I need to actually write something good.

But either way, I write something.

Can a New Business Succeed Without Blogging?

I beat the content marketing drum a lot, and that’s for two primary reasons:

  1. It’s been incredibly successful for us, and
  2. It’s pretty easily repeatable by nearly any kind of business

So when someone asks me for advice on growing their business, it’s an obvious place to start.

With that said, it’s by no means a necessity. PLENTY of businesses have gotten, and continue to get very successful with little to no focus on content.

Slack didn’t have a successful blog until well after the company reached impressive scale. Same for Dropbox, Zapier and countless others, though many of them have boosted their growth by adding content marketing to their approach later on.

There are plenty of ways to grow a successful business, so if you don’t want to try your hand at content, you don’t have to.

But I wouldn’t recommend it :)

How Do You Handle Onboarding for Customers Who Want Their Hands Held?

This is a good question, because big clients—“whales”—can take up so much of your attention as a startup.

We all salivate at the prospect of seeing a huge name and team sign up for our product, but often these customers come with strings attached.

They might want customization to the app to fit their needs (something we no longer do, as it was too big a distraction), or, as in James’ question, they may want their hand held a bit more than others.

While we won’t do the former, when it comes to the latter—a little extra attention—my approach has always been to give the customer what they’re asking for.

After all, that’s the point of focusing on customer success; making your customers successful makes you successful, so we’ll give extra help to customers of any size.

If the time spent on a particular customer begins to get out of hand, you might try nudging them toward your self-help tools, if you have those. Our support widget and knowledge base have been tremendously useful in cutting down the time we need to spend showing customers how to do things, allowing our support team to focus on doing those extra “above and beyond” things that truly build loyalty and make our customers happy.

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Your Turn: Ask Groove Anything

I’d love for this new weekly segment to be successful, and provide a valuable repository of answers from our entire community for entrepreneurs everywhere.

To do that, I need your help.

Here’s what you can do to get involved:

  1. Ask questions. Post them in the comments of this post, or Tweet them to us at @Groove.
  2. Answer questions. Every Friday, we’ll post a new Q&A segment. If you have anything to add or share regarding any of the questions asked, jump in! Many of you are far more qualified than I to speak on some of the topics that people ask me about.
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From “aha” to “oh shit”, we’re sharing everything on our journey to $10M in annual revenue. We’re learning a lot and so will you.

About the Author

Alex Turnbull is the CEO & Founder of Groove (simple helpdesk software for small businesses) who loves to build startups and surf.

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