Born and raised in Cleveland, OH, Benjamin Weinberg, Founder of BACE Digital LLC, professionally entered the world of digital marketing while working towards a Master's Degree in Digital Media at Valparaiso University. While earning his degree part-time, Weinberg did video marketing work for a firefighting manufacturer. When he graduated in December 2011, his boss helped him find a job with Orlando Health. He relocated in May 2012 and spent the next seven years producing videos, implementing employee engagement and rewards systems, writing articles and helping manage the hospital's website. As Weinberg shared, the experience set the stage for his eventual jump into entrepreneurship.
"I wore so many hats with Orlando Health," he said. "Between working on the website, doing social media marketing, helping with SEO and developing new functionality with the development team, I was exposed to everything. At some point, I started to realize that it's all connected. I also came to realize that through no fault of their own, Orlando Health, like many other businesses, did not see everything as one cohesive strategy. That led me down the path of looking at my own experience and abilities to help businesses develop a cohesive digital marketing strategy from concept to completion. That's when I decided to go into business for myself to help these businesses develop a single strategy that makes the most of their online presence, helps them grow their business and increases revenue and awareness."
BACE Digital LLC was founded in July 2019. Weinberg put the wheels in motion shortly before he left Orlando Health. It was scary to leave his employer of seven years, but he knew it was an opportunity he couldn't pass up.
"I was definitely nervous to do it, but it's something I'm passionate about," he said. "I believe in the value of good websites and good digital marketing strategies. I also believe the answer to a lot of issues we're seeing now with businesses is not understanding digital marketing or how to do it properly. It's contact free and you can do business while you're not even actively working in the moment. Customers can come from anywhere at any time. I also sincerely believe that even before the COVID-19 Pandemic, businesses were going to become more and more digital. I wanted to help them make that transition and move their marketing online in a smart and helpful way to benefit their business. That transition shouldn't be a burden to them."
For Weinberg, the biggest challenge since launching his business has been teaching himself to sell. He also candidly admits that running a business is more than just doing your craft. "I had a lot to learn about running a business," he said. "Year one was definitely a learning year."
Using the latest tools and techniques, Weinberg breaks down barriers between you and your online customers and makes your website and other online channels work for you. The foundation of his freelance web consultation business is inspired by his passion for helping businesses and organizations dedicated to products, services and innovations that contribute to the health and well-being of individuals and communities. According to Weinberg, there are several ways he helps businesses.
"A digital marketing and website strategy tailored for your audience can help the right customers find you, and convert so you can build your bottom line," he said. "How your business presents itself online is more about your customer than about you. I can help establish and enhance your brand online, so a visit to your website is similar to a visit to your store. I also improve businesses and organizations online through audience-specific digital marketing strategies that focus on them rather than the channels."
By joining the West Orange Chamber of Commerce and getting involved in a networking group, he's been able to create awareness of his business in a relatively short period of time. According to Weinberg, growing a business online is a large integrated puzzle of digital channels, analytics, messaging and interpersonal connections. "Each organization lends itself to a unique strategy and I enjoy figuring that strategy out and helping the business execute it so it can optimize its success."
Looking ahead, Weinberg's goal is to specialize in an industry niche that needs help with their digital strategies. When he first started the business, he wanted to stay in the medical field because that's what he knew. However, that industry is changing. Practices are being absorbed by larger corporate practices and they have their own social/website teams. Finding the right niche will be key to his future success.
What advice does Weinberg have for aspiring entrepreneurs? "First of all, it's important to understand that the best thing you can offer is you, not necessarily your products and services," he said. "Also, find a mentor that has done it and get advice from them. Lastly, start small. Don't go full-force right away. Start by offering your services through an online platform like Upwork. Learn about what other people like you are doing to sell themselves. See how you can improve upon your services. See what works and what doesn't. Then figure out how to translate that into selling what you do off the platform."