May 03, 2023
Lindy Nowak - Finding Freedom By Keeping It Simple

Lindy Nowak is the Founder of Up in a Day™ – a new-to-market website service that is devoted to helping small business owners, entrepreneurs, and independent operators get their website up quickly, within budget, and with min...

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Lindy Nowak is the Founder of Up in a Day™ – a new-to-market website service that is devoted to helping small business owners, entrepreneurs, and independent operators get their website up quickly, within budget, and with minimal effort from them.

In this episode, you’ll learn about Lindy’s journey from her corporate career as a creative director in New York, working with big-name brands like L’oreal to starting a traditional marketing agency and transitioning to the productized website design agency she runs today at Up In A Day.

Lindy describes the aha moment that sparked the idea for launching a productized service around website design, the purpose, and importance of having a website for your business, and why it’s better to have a professional create your business website.

Lindy reveals the embarrassing mistake she made with her business website, how she used her network to build her agency team, how she developed her own training and onboarding method for her designers, and how she structured her processes and delivery to balance managing her team with providing clients with a quality service.

Lindy shares how she combats scope creep and filters out clients who aren’t a good fit for her agency, the trend she sees website design moving toward in the future, and what it was like for her to jump from her corporate career to entrepreneurship. 

Finally, Lindy tells us how being her mother’s caretaker ignited her desire to become a business owner, how she’s building her business to support her eventual exit, and what you can do if you feel lonely as an online business owner.

Skip to Topic:

1:54 - Shifting to a productized service
14:04 - Recruiting talent for your agency
19:12 - Structuring your process and deliverable to balance time, team, and quality
23:08 - Combatting scope creep and weeding out clients who are not a good fit for your business
26:58 - What Lindy says is the future of websites
29:13 - Making the jump from corporate work to entrepreneur
34:10 - Setting yourself up for success when launching a new business
35:12 - Building a business to sell it and exit
39:06 - How to combat loneliness as an online business owner

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Welcome to the Real People Real Business Show. My name is Stephanie Hayes, and I'm a business strategist who helps mature entrepreneurs design asset-based business models that set their businesses up for growth and exit. I love to speak with like-minded entrepreneurs that share their real stories and the gritty details on how they've navigated their own way through. On this show, you won't hear about glamorized entrepreneurship journeys that you see online, and you won't be told how to make six figures in six weeks. Instead, you can expect to hear real, vulnerable and inspiring stories that you can relate to that have helped create the foundation. For each of our guests businesses today, I am so excited to welcome Lindy Novak. Lindy spent over a decade as a creative director in New York City across multiple industries and brands, including L'Oreal, Carol's daughter, entertainment Weekly magazine and Women's Health Magazine. In 2018, she founded Leno Creative, a branding and marketing agency. What started as traditional agency offerings quickly evolved into what Up in a Day is today, a new to market website service that specifically focuses on helping small business owners, entrepreneurs, and independent operators get their website up quickly on budget and with little to no effort from them. Welcome to the show, Lindy, and thanks so much for taking the time to share your story today. Oh, thank you so much. I'm so excited to be here. I wanna hear the story because this is like, this is kind of funny. Um, my girlfriend and I, when we were, we both come out of the, um, the IT industry, or at least the digital marketing world and websites, and we had started up a business a while ago, um, to try and solve the problem of business owners getting a website up in. A budget that works for them quickly because we al also felt that, you know, new businesses or businesses that were evolving really kind of needed that sort of quick start and didn't necessarily need to spend, you know, thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars on something they weren't quite sure was right yet. So tell me a little bit about how Up in Day came to be. Just like that actually. Um, so I, so when I had Leno Creative, we were doing quite well and part of our offerings was building these very big eccentric websites on Squarespace and Shopify. But what was happening is just like you were saying, all these small business owners, Came in as referrals from our smaller clients, just in desperate need of a website yesterday. Whether it's new because they're business, business pivoted, they were starting a new business or because they were seasoned business and their cousin designed their website and it was time for a refresh. Uh, and you know, they, they were on a budget. And at that time I just didn't have it built into our business model. I didn't even have it built into our margins and. At the same time, I was actually going through a little bit of a, how do I make my life easier, uh, scenario. And um, one day I was just sitting listening to a webinar and I was like, oh my gosh, productized services. What do I love doing? Well, I love helping small businesses. I love helping people. What are we really great at? Building Squarespace websites. And so the wheels started spinning and I'm like, Okay, let's think about that. Hmm. Well, they actually don't need to be spending $10,000 enough on a, on a website, especially if they're new because your business is always evolving. Plus you wanna be on budget, you can always upgrade later. And today, even in WordPress, you can get a template, right? So you have all of these websites are, rather than like coding html, you can get on a a Squarespace and you know, Technically make your own website. So I was like, huh, okay, well, putting the puzzle pieces together, we can do this and look how fast we already do these Squarespace websites. If we just create a process and a system and a scope that fits for specific industries to get a great online presence up using it as a marketing tool and a conversion tool, we can actually do this in a day. And that's how up in a day came to be. Now, did it take forever to come up with the actual business model, the systems and processes and I lost a ton of sleep. Yes. But now that we're up and rolling, it is just like, it's so gratifying and it's super fun. You meet tons of people and the best part is, is that just during the review, when we're having it with our clients, it's like, It's so cool to watch people get so happy about, you know, getting a great website. Done and up and for a flat fee. So it's super cool. So, um, I think that, you know, today, like going back what I was saying, like nothing's super coded. I mean, some websites actually, some large businesses, absolutely they need like custom WordPress sites with Juul, et cetera. Like that's not what a lot of small business owners need. And I think it's just like, um, You know, from an awareness standpoint, just kind of educating everybody that there are solutions out there that you can still get a great website without, you know, having your sister or son created. So, yeah. Yeah, I totally agree. And I, I think that there's a time and a place for leveling up to those $10,000, $20,000 sites, but you know, there's no, there was, there's sort of like nothing in between and. Templates sound great, but I know having implemented a lot of them that it's not a plug and play like you still, you still probably end up spending the amount of time and energy and frustration that you would spend. Like it makes a lot more sense to just. Let someone do it for you a hundred percent. Uh, there are a couple things that we always say to people, um, whether it's actually a post on LinkedIn or we're just like talking to a potential customer and it's like you are already drowning in work. The time, money, and effort that you will put in into trying to f design your own website is the opportunity costs there are just like don't match up. Um, and you're right with the templates, we've gone through those templates so many times being like, What they're, they're not laid out for marketing purposes. They're just laid out, you know about me. They're mostly like in the kind of art space, at least for Squarespace, and they're not structured in a way that's fit for modern day websites and how people actually get onto a website and use it as a functional tool to get what they want. So we don't use those templates. We just start with a blank canvas, Yeah, on the templates, I mean, it's. You still need to know the underlying technology, and I've seen so many business owners and so many of my clients who just get themselves completely stalled. I had one client who spent, I'm not even kidding, like two years. And every time we would talk, the first priority was, I've gotta get my website done. I've gotta get my, and I. Her website was not critical or strategic to her being able to build or sell her business. It like all she needed was a presence and a container to hold her content, and yet I think a lot of people get really sort of blindsided by. All of the stuff that they read out there about how a business, uh, how a website can be and, and like all the things it needs to be, and man, most of these people just need to like, have a space. You just need a space. It's exactly right. And we're, as business owners, as individuals, we're all our own worst critics. So you're sitting down and trying to write content for your business and it's, it's just gonna be jargon. It's gonna be. So much content, or you're gonna get stuck, you're gonna get frustrated, you're gonna put it aside, it's gonna go to the bottom of the to-do list, and then all of a sudden you're procrastinating it and you're relying on your social media accounts to be that presence. That's a totally different audience that like you're working with a TikTok audience. And a LinkedIn audience, and then a social, or sorry, and an Instagram audience. And those are different mindsets, different, you know, people. Your website should be your business card, your digital business card, acting as confirmation. Even if it's e-commerce, like you're selling your services or a pro, like a few products. Uh, your website is where people come to actually convert. And is there a temptation to kind of move into the super high ticket, high end sites that people think they want? I think it depends on where your business is going, honestly, and where you are in your business. I was just talking to somebody the other day and the. The, what I told them was, you know, think about where your business is now, whether it's new or seasoned, where do you want your business to be in six months and where do you want your business to be in a year? It's really that vision exercise, right? What that does is it kind of ta, it stops you to, or it helps you to stop and think about where. Your business. Is going to be where you want it to be, and from there, okay, now let's talk about the website, because the website will always evolve and you'll always need to make updates to it. Maybe you'll even go through a rebranding. And so my point was, is like think about this overall structure for the future, the umbrella. Now, even though you're not there yet, it's still important you get something up, even if it's just a landing page, two pages. Your services on your homepage, a little bit about you, and then maybe there's an about page, you know, separately in a contact. So thinking about the structure of your website is really important so that you don't feel stuck. And I think I, I'm so, I'm so glad that you said that because I think that it's one, it's like business, right? People think that they're, they need to arrive somewhere like they're working towards something and they're, at some point in time, they're gonna arrive. And what that does is it creates this constant feeling of like, I'm never there. I am not enough, or I haven't, I haven't done enough. But I think the website is like, absolutely. The same in that you do evolve, right? You can start with something small and you, you know, if your business needs it and it needs to keep going, then you can also, um, evolve your website. Like it's okay for that change to happen. Oh, I think so too. And also leaving it to the professionals. I have a story that I wanna share. It's a little embarrassing, but I'm gonna share it anyway. As an example, when I started up in a day, I was like, well, I'm a marketer, I'm a designer and I'm also a website designer and developer, so I'm going to design our website. Well, that took three months too long, and at the end it had so much content on it, it didn't even make sense. And I was so unhappy with it. And I was like embarrassed, but not, and I was confused and I was like, is this, is this clear? Is this. The, is this the services that we're actually offering? And I remember, uh, I was inter being interviewed shortly after and they asked me, what is the funniest mistake you ever made? Well, it was designing our company website, like leave it to the professionals and hindsight. I should have hired it out, invested the money in getting it done right the first time, and then evolved it from there, but it didn't happen like that. So it's, it's important to know your vision, but also leave. Leave what you need. To the professionals like your website. Whereas what I should have been doing instead of working on the website design is thinking about the vision and the mission and the structure of our company. It just, it really just set me back a few months, which is totally fine. I learned my lesson, but at least I can help other people now by saying, don't design your own website as a business owner, unless you really know what you want. Oh, and you know, the, the piece for me that's really challenging. Is writing about myself and like I can write, I'm a writer, but I can write about other people. But if then I find it absolutely impossible to write my own sales copy, to write my own website copy, and I. I did write my own website copy for this iteration of my website, but it was like pulling teeth and I had to keep going to my, you know, my little b f f in business. And she's a, she's like a high-end copywriter, and I'm like, what do I say? So she knows, she pulled some of it out me. But holy moly, that is the hardest thing. But if I had to write that for someone else, no problem. I mean, it's easy for me to distill and see, but we, we just have the curse of the expert, don't we? Yeah, we certainly do. Yeah, I could do it all day long for somebody else. Even today, somebody reached out, uh, as a coaching company whom I am partnering with to host a webinar, and they asked me for the description of the webinar. I know exactly what I'm gonna talk about, but it took me a day to put that together, and I'm just sitting there like, Nope, nope, nope. Can't do it. Finally, I just sent it to our copywriter and invested, you know, a few hundred bucks, like, can you please write this for us? And that's all I, that's all I had to do, just put, put the money behind it to the experts. So one of the, one of the issues I know a lot of agency owners, um, face on a pretty continual basis is that it's impossible to find resources and. Maybe it's not impossible, but it's, it's certainly tricky and it's, and like finding resources, not only that have the skillset, but are also a really good fit for your business and for your customers and y yada yada. So tell me a little bit more about the journey to put together a team. That is so true. So actually our team, I'll talk about our internal team and then we actually have a team of partners, which goes along with what you were just saying, how difficult that is because we offer something very, very specific and a lot of our clients, especially small businesses, need more after their website is built out and you want to send them to a good place. You don't wanna just leave them cold and dry. Um, but going back to our internal team, The first thing I did was I designed most of the websites on my own because I was testing our systems and processes and the framework in which I created to build these websites so that they're for marketing purposes, for, they're all a little bit different for different agencies. And then once I felt good about that, you know, working in the business, I'm totally, I was totally fine with that. Then I said, okay, so who. What type of designer can take a checklist without feeling overwhelmed? Cuz a lot of creatives tend to feel overwhelmed, um, and be able to take this process and use their creativity and feel okay of building a website in 12 hours. And so the first thing I did is I looked into LinkedIn and I got a few. A few people reach out with their resumes and I gave them a test and they were like kind of okay. And then as, and then actually what happened after that is I started reaching out to our partner agencies. So we have digital marketing agencies that we partner with, as I mentioned before, and I asked them for referrals for designers, because it's difficult to find good marketing based. Talented creatives that aren't already employed when, uh, for a company, um, you, we need somebody who's more freelance based because, and we never know when our next sale is coming, so I just need to have a roster of tea of designers ready to go. So I needed at least. Five ready. And so I just reached out to my warm network, cold network. I started posting on LinkedIn just in, you know, just within the network on LinkedIn, not, I didn't run any ads, nothing like that. And I started just interviewing people and then I realized that we also have logo designers, uh, and copywriters. I reached out to them. There was one, one of our logo designers is so good, and she actually just came on board and. I just train them. So there's the process of like bringing them in, finding them through your more warm network, doing the interview, and then having to train them. And so training is always, uh, an an interesting feat. Uh, And because we are so fast and so turnkey, I had to create a training method in which these designers can easily digest exactly what we're doing. And so I created a whole like onboarding kit just for these guys. But then I sit with them and make sure, you know, they're comfortable and they do a test and everything. So long story short, it was just reaching out to my network and my partners to find good people and. Putting the trust in them to just try it for once, knowing that if they screwed up, I would have to pick up the pieces. So, but so far, so good. Yeah, it's an interesting, you've got a little bit of an interesting sort of additional dynamic to the work that you are selling because you have to find designers that not are, are, you know, creative whomever's that are not only good at what they do, but can also work inside of that kind of environment. Right? Because I know not every designer or every creative, I know lots of copywriters who would be like, Nope. I can't do that. I can't do, I can't force my creativity in, you know, a day. So how has, how have you been able to find those people who are A okay with working in that kind of environment? B, still have the skillset and C um, You know, there's, I think this is changing with the la you know, the events of the last couple of years, but I know that we always found there was sort of a, a friction between people wanting guaranteed work and being able to commit to you and be available to you. But also wanting to have the flexibility to take on work of their own. So tell me a little bit about managing that kind of dynamic. Cause I think it's important, right? It's like, it's probably, if I'm guessing correctly, it's probably one of the things that you spend a lot of time on. When I started up in a day, the offering was, we'll build it within three days. Yes. We still, we still offer that and people do come to us and say, can I get my website in two days? And that's fine. Uh, but when it came to hiring and having the freelancers be available and ready to go and have. Onboarding process of the client with tho with them, I said I had to take a step back and rework the way we onboard our clients in terms of timelines. So we, I know now that I need at least a. At least three to four days, uh, prior to the actual buildout to make sure a designer is ready to go available and has the creative brief and is available for the kickoff call if necessary. Um, depending on how complicated the website is. So that's what I had to do. I had to say, okay, well instead of the product being okay, we will do it today or we will do it tomorrow. That's not gonna work. It just doesn't work for me. It's too exhausting and it's too stressful on a creative, on a designer. And so therefore, now there's like enough time a buffer zone is what we call it. Where we, where I choose which designer is going to be the best fit, reach out to them, and then just bring them on board. So there's kind of like that, like that area where we're working internally, um, in, in terms of copywriters. So we have, we have copywriting services, but I tell every single client that purchases that add-on, that that does not fall under the up in a day scope. There are two reasons. One, yes, there's no way they can sit down and write copy, even a cleanup copy for a, a brand that they just met, right? So our. Copywriters, we have two. And they specifically only do marketing, copyright or copywriting, uh, for websites. Uh, that is just a week to two week turnaround because, and the reason is seriously for quality, customer service, and quality product. Your website. Can be beautifully designed, but if the messaging is off and the, there's gr, there are grammar errors and it just doesn't make sense from a functional standpoint and user experience standpoint, but most importantly, like how your ideal audience is actually coming to your website, finding a solution to their problem, et cetera, et cetera, to making a call. That's all copy and messaging, and that takes strategy and time and commitment and so there, and, and that's really, really, really important for up in a day. As in terms of what we provide instead of just like quick websites. Yes, we do that too, but every single website we do comes with that highest quality of service. It's just like something I really wanted to provide, like I, I guess I'm a little bit of type A. So when I started up in the day, I wasn't like, well, I'm just, we're just gonna do pretty little websites, blah, blah, blah, you know, for whomever. It's not what I wanted. I really, really wanted to help entrepreneurs and small business owners actually get a website that they deserve, because I know how expensive it is. It's a crazy commitment, and I just, I, I'm, I just don't have it in me to provide some quality. Yeah, but I don't think you have to, and this is like the problem that we were trying to solve, except we got kind of like distracted with other things and we didn't super commit to it. And what we really recognized very quickly was how tricky it is to, because it wasn't about the services you're providing. Like yes, we could. Easily design and build a site in a day. But that's not what it's about. It's the back and forth and it's the, especially for copy and it's the, you know, the customer delays. And the customer expectations too. So I found, we found that, and maybe you can, I'd love to hear you comment on this actually. So one of the challenges we found was that these business owners would hear, you'll get a website in a day, or, you know, short order and they would. Their expectation was no matter how much we set the expectation, the expectation was still, I'm gonna have this huge, you know, beautiful built out website with all this. And so the scope would creep and creep and creep and creep, and we'd always be managing it back. And I'll always be manage. And then the customer would just be like, well, I thought I was getting this, even though it's all documented and what have you. So there's this like, Intrinsic ballooning of expectations about what a website is. You got love a good scope crepe. Yes, it's so true. So, The way we combat that. Okay. So actually let me take a step back. And another reason why I started up in the date is because of so much scope creep with Leno Creative. And yes, I know this my responsibility to manage and I have to say I did a really great job. But when you have retainer clients, it's always like that kind of, you know, it's a gray area, right? And I was like, I don't. I don't like scope creep. It's too much and it's too stressful. And then I'm getting angry and then I'm getting annoyed and then it's not fun anymore. So when I, so when I created the whole system in process for up in a day, the first thing we do is we have a call with our clients. Sometimes it's a phone call and other times it's a Zoom call. Most of the time it's a Zoom call. So when, so there's a whole checklist that we go through. That is structured so that we are very, very clear and communicative of what they get and what we provide and the expectations from now until the end of the build out. And. We ask specific questions. They ask questions and it's uh, it's really just the way formula it's formulated so that we can weed out the people that are too difficult to work with or have too high of expectations or think that are just like, and a lot of people, and I'm sure you guys went through this all the time, there are a lot of people out there who just aren't privy to the web world and they don't know how it works and they don't know how much work goes into it and how. The time it takes to actually build a big website and they shouldn't know anyway. So that's my responsibility during the call to make sure they understand how it all works, um, who it's for and who it's not for. And I'm 99 times out of a hundred they get it. And I think nowadays, from what I'm seeing cuz I talk to so many people a week, is that people are really starting to. Get a hang of the fact that I actually only need, I can weed out all the jargon. I actually only need a simple website. So, hey, I've been in business for a very long time and I'm actually p going backwards, right? I I really, probably the next iteration of my site is maybe even can be one page. I love that. I'm really, I, that's where I know, I think that's where web's going a hundred percent. Just streamlined, you know, my services and most people are coming not to go and dig around on 850 pages of content, but from, I'm not a content site, right. I'm a professional that offers professional services, and if you want those, Here, like I don't want you to dig around on my site to try and find that, like it's very simple. Very simple. Totally. Sorry, I totally talked over you. Um, I was just, somebody asked me the other day, where do you see. Websites moving towards in 2023 and beyond. And my answer to that is simplicity. Less is more With smart, smart copy and intuitive design in a day of TikTok and Instagram and you're scrolling. Scrolling, and you're just searching and you're stopping and you're going like people are. Most likely doing that on your website too. Just from we, we use Crazy Egg and that's how people move on our site. They're just like scrolling through as fast as possible, uh, just to get an answer, uh, for what they're looking for, like a solution to their problem. So I think yeah, that's awesome that you want that. You're thinking about a one-pager, try it. Yeah. Okay. So, but we all came through this, this online business world. With the understanding that everybody needs to have a blog and everybody need, but that's because websites, at one point in time, we're our only platforms, right? But content is increasingly just being created in social channels and conversational channels, and I, I feel like very, unless you are, uh, like a content authority on some topic, then most people are likely not gonna read your blog. Right. It, they're going to read your emails, they're going to read your social posts. They're, so, I think we can move away from these really overly complex websites and become very, um, surgical about the way we're using that platform. Oh, I think so too. That's so well put. Yeah. Yeah. Thanks. Well, I'm, I'm looking forward to my next iteration to see what becomes of it. But I mean, just don't design it yourself. Well, I, I designed my current site, so I, I actually used to work as a designer so I could Yes. You're the, you're the, yeah. You're the exception to the role. Well, I don't even know if that's true. I, I, I would really prefer to just. Outsource all of it. And you know, my, my B fff is a designer and my other B fff is a, is a, is a copywriter. So I'm like, you guys can just do it. Oh, you're in good hands there. Yeah, I think so. Um, so I wanna, I wanna shift, um, the conversation just a little bit to back to you and. You know who you are as a business owner because you left the creative world, you left the agency world. You were New York, New York agency. That's a big deal. And now you are working for yourself. You are building your own agency, and I'm certain that the work that you're doing is very different than the work you did in New York. So tell me a little bit about that transition, what it's meant to you and how you identify yourself as a business owner. I was an art director and creative director. For now, I'm aging myself over 12 years and I worked Brandside and agency and my last seven years in New York in the corporate world was in publishing and. Immediately when I found myself in publishing is where I found my sweet spot because I was a creative director, for example, at Entertainment Weekly, but I was the creative director on the sales and marketing side, and that role is super cool because it's not sitting behind a desk and designing all day. It's really thinking big, big picture partnerships. Advertisers, you know, working with the editorial team. And so there was a lot of dynamic thinking and there was a lot of forward thinking too, especially in publishing in those years, those late years and where publishing was heading, uh, for the digital online world. And so, Like I said, I just fell in love with it. I fell in love with what I was doing and I fell in love with marketing. Um, I had a lot of digital experience by that time, but it wasn't fulfilling. There was something that was always in the back of my mind saying, I don't like going into an office every day and sitting in a space that's all my own without a window. Or I don't like being under an umbrella of people. I mean, in, in short, telling me what to do. I just, it's not where I come from. It's just not my personality. My entire family is like this. They're all entrepreneurs. I am the only one that went corporate and when I was given the opportunity to move to Miami, Which is like my favorite city in the world outside of Rio de Janeiro, sister Cities. I jumped at it. I was like, that's it. Yes. I didn't know what I was gonna do. I kind of always go with the wind. I was lucky enough in New York where there was a big community of, you know, creative directors and cor in corporations where they kind of like poached you in and out. I was actually always known for, uh, coming into, uh, creative departments and help. Kind of restructure them, if you will. Um, so that they were happier. Uh, and then so when I came to Miami, I was like, well, you know, there isn't. There aren't creative director positions that I'm a good fit for. Um, I think I mentioned this when we first jumped on as like, I barely speak Spanish. I speak Portuguese, but that doesn't help. And I was like, well, it's just not that. It's same caliber. So now here I am with my savings. No job insights and what can I do right now to really take a step back and think about what I can do to enjoy myself? And so that transition was actually really difficult because, um, that was 2019, sorry, 2018 I believe. And yeah, this is my fifth year here. And my mom got sick and she got sick really fast in Oh, in. It was just kind of blindsided everyone in my family. And I was lucky enough that she was living two hours north of Miami, and so I spent a year taking care of her. And during that time I was still like doing some freelancing, doing some reflection, but really like a hundred percent of my energy was going into helping her. And then, Sadly, but also in a good way, she did finally pass. And that's when I was like, whoa, okay, so now I need to get control. What? What? I have an expensive apartment that I love and I'm not giving it up. I have a lifestyle that I continue want to continue living. And it's having gone through that with my mom, I realized that, oh my god, life is so short and it's so beautiful and there are. So many things to experience and see and feel that I decided that it was time to go off on my own. And so I started Leno Creative and I had a lot of fun with it. And, but it was, and that was fine cuz you, in a way, it's almost like you're freelancing. But then when I was done with that and I started up in a day, that transition was unlike any other experience I've ever had. I mean, we're talking like all of a sudden you're a real business owner, which I did not have a lot of experience in cuz I came from corporate. And I had to move really fast because I bootstrapped the company. I didn't get funding, I didn't take a loan out from the bank. I had an X amount. And I was like, okay, let's do this. And I, I mentioned earlier that I spent about six months devising the model, the business model, and the systems and the processes to make this as automated and easy as possible for myself and for my staff, and for our customers. And that came with a lot of, uh, doubts. Sleepless nights, a lot of learning how to do self-care and really honing in on myself as a 40 plus year old woman business owner and taking control of her life to set it up for success. So with up in a day, it's more than just a passion project. It's really, um, the real project is creating a. You know, an X million dollar, you know, company to set it up as a, either a franchise or as a productized business that I can sell in five to 10 years, 15 years, however long I wanna go for. So that is, that was my transition and that's where I am today. You're speaking my language. I mean, my shift is to be focusing and working with, um, business owners that do want to eventually sell their businesses and build those business models. And what I know about building a business model for a business that is eventually set up for sale versus building a business model for, you know, something that, you know, you just eventually may just. Die when you're done. Right. Those are two very different types of businesses. So I'm curious, just from a selfish perspective, what is, what is, what are you focusing on knowing that that's sort of the end goal? Taking a step back, slowing down and putting one foot in front of the other. So right now, so when I started up in a day, I just wanted it and I wanted it now. Quick, quick, quick. And you think when you started a really great idea that people are gonna flood your doors now, it doesn't happen like that. And it didn't happen for us either. I mean, now that we're doing quite well, I'm focusing on creating a. Hopefully one in all platform project management systems so that the business can be a little bit more automated and easier. Uh, and I can let go of the reins a little bit and have a system that's so easy to pick up for somebody else that can take my take. Part of what I do and run with it, but do it better. Like I al I am a big believer in hiring people that are better than you, better designers, better pe, better sales, better marketers. Like that's huge for me, so that I can step back and see the business from 30,000 feet and come up with the fun ideas that I've always wanted to do. But right now we're, we're not there. We're in growth phase and. I will even say that we're so in girl's face that I'm actually, I'm, I'm drowning, which is amazing. I'm not stressed about, that's why. So I'm going slow, but like, wow. Um, yeah, now it's time. Now it's time to get that, that management system. It's the little things and the little wins in your business, um, that really. Really help you move forward. And you're right when it's, there's a difference between running a business that you're just kind of in and you just kind of run it until you're, give it to your next of kin. Um, or if you're like, packaging up this deal to see what you can build to sell, like, that's so cool For me, that's, that's an entrepreneurial spirit I never knew I had, that's always been deep inside me, so it's super cool. I think a lot of women also don't realize that's an option for them, right? They think that you have to be in the world of bros, venture capitalists and all of that in order to consider packaging up a business for sale. And I'm not talking like tomorrow. I mean, I have the intention, I have the long term vision of building something that can become an asset that has value and a lot of businesses do, most businesses do. But if you tweak things just a little bit in the backend and create a plan that is going to pr, create that sort of productization inside the business like you're doing right now, that is absolutely an asset that can be sold. And when it's the, the difference is how intentional are you about it. So I'd love to hear that. Totally. Um, there's an, there's a question I ask everyone on the show and I'd love to hear your perspective. We're all, we're talking about real business, right? We're talking about what actually happens when we're building, what's the difference between what we hear out there in the online business world or in even just in the business world in general? And what's real about being a business owner? Oh, that's a good question. I mean, where do you start, right? I know right now, or five minutes ago. Um, I would say what is real is, well, actually I'm going to give it from my perspective. You hear that being a business owner, Is a lonely place, but I think today, depending on what you are providing, it doesn't have to be lonely because there are a lot of entrepreneurial groups, there are zooms, and I know that's kind of lonely for a lot of people. For myself personally, it's not. Um, I think that, I've never been, I've never met so many people in my life. Being a solo business owner. I mean, I run our entire business out of the office in our apartment, and I have, and it's my dream. So I would say that it doesn't have to be lonely. If you can find several networks that you can connect with and relate to and be a part of, I think that's, um, really important. I love that. That's a totally new answer that I haven't heard yet, and I actually really agree with you. Like I, my whole social network has come from being a business owner and being connected to other entrepreneurs, and that's, those are my friends, right? And some days at the end of the, well, most days, at the end of the day, I don't even really wanna talk to anybody else because I've been so social all day with so much engagement and so much interaction that I'm, I'm tired. I'm the same, same way. I love it. So we're coming up on time. Can you tell our listeners how they can find you? Sure. You can find us, me, on our website. It's up in a day dot c o. Is that the website you built or someone else did a mix? Actually we're, we're up for redesign already and it's only been, well, let's see. We redesigned the website a year ago. And the business evolves. And with it you do too. And so does your website. And now it's like, oh, here we go. A whole other, a whole other phase. Yeah. I think you just set expectations with people that listen, you're gonna redesign. You are, and it's gonna happen. And it doesn't mean that what you've done right now is wrong. It means that the next phase, you're just growing, right? You're growing, you're evolving. If you're not growing and evolving, you've got a problem. Right? Yes. Okay. Exactly. We will make sure all of the, all of the links are in the show notes. Um, but I wanted to, uh, just thank you very much for coming today. We're gonna wrap up the episode, but I'm so happy we had the opportunity to chat with Lindy today to hear more about how her business came to be, her experiences along the way, and what the future of the business entails. And thank you for tuning into this episode of The Real People Real Business Show, where we get the real entrepreneurial stories and journeys that you can relate to. The show notes, resources, and links from this episode are available on my website and social media platforms. If you've enjoyed today's content, I would love for you to give us a review on whatever platform you're on to help us share these genuine stories with an even bigger audience. Until next time, keep building, keep dreaming and keeping real.

Lindy NowakProfile Photo

Lindy Nowak

Founder, Up in a Day Website

Lindy Nowak Lindy Nowak spent over a decade as a creative director in New York City across multiple industries and brands including L’Oréal, Carol’s Daughter, Entertainment Weekly Magazine, and Women’s Health Magazine. In 2018, she founded Lino Creative, a branding and marketing agency. What started as traditional agency offerings, quickly evolved into what Up in a Day™ is today – a new-to-market website service that specifically focuses on helping small business owners, entrepreneurs, and independent operators get their website up quickly, on budget, and with little or no effort from them.

As a small business owner herself, Lindy knows that starting a new company takes an immense amount of time, effort, and capital. Searching for the right website agency or trying to design one’s own website can be frustrating, time-consuming, and costly. That’s why she started Up in a Day™ – to end the frustrations and help small businesses get up and running with little effort, on budget, and quickly. Lindy brings her passion, creativity, and marketing expertise to help companies grow and thrive.