Milwaukee-area women-owned start-up businesses have an opportunity to have their websites designed and developed for free.
Inspired by the recent celebration of International Women’s Day and Women’s Entrepreneurship Week, Rogue Wave Marketing, a Brookfield-based, woman-owned firm, is offering Milwaukee-area women several chances to have their website built for free in a competition in which they share their start-up stories.
The “Rogue Women Website Campaign,” whose tagline is “Empowered Women Empowering Women,” launched on International Women’s Day, March 8, and will run through April 8 when voting via Facebook ends.
Empowered women empowering women
Over the next 20 months, six more women entrepreneurs will win the design and development of their website and related marketing coaching, each package worth $7,500. Subsequent competitions run June 7 through July 7 and Sept. 6 through Oct. 6, as well as throughout 2020 when four more competitions will be held on a quarterly basis.
The winner of the initial competition will be announced April 12. Complete information and contest rules are here.
Ready to apply?
Rogue Wave Marketing owner Sarah Feldmann says she was moved to create the campaign by both the excitement she felt on International Women’s Day and by a sobering recognition that the “playing field is not level.”
“Women-owned start-ups have historically lagged behind their male counterparts,” says Feldmann. “With this ongoing program, we aim to help women entrepreneurs succeed.
Wisconsin has one of the best climates for a woman-owned startup, according to the Milwaukee Business Journal. But a recent study by Biz2Credit revealed that women who apply for business loans typically get 45 percent less in funding than their male counterparts.
How to win a free website
To win the website and related marketing, women whose businesses are no more than two years old are asked to do three things: 1) complete an online form about their business, 2) create a short video about their reasons and inspiration for starting their business, and 3) get the most “likes” of their video on Rogue Wave Marketing’s Facebook page.
Feldmann says the “passion” part of the entry is key.
“The video is not about video creation skills. It should focus on your ‘why,’ the fire, the passion that drives you to do something bigger and bolder than ever before. We want to get behind you and your mission – we want you to tell us what you’ll do with the momentum.”
Runners-up receive a one-hour marketing strategy session to help leverage their business.
Wisconsin has one of the best climates for a woman-owned startup, according to the Milwaukee Business Journal, yet a recent study by Biz2Credit revealed that women who apply for business loans typically get 45 percent less in funding than their male counterparts.
“It’s time to not just level the playing field, but flip it.”
“It’s time to not just level the playing field, but flip it,” says Feldmann. “By donating a website, we’re providing a key building block to success, insuring your customers or clients can find you and understand what you do.
“We’ve all heard the quote that behind every successful woman is their ‘tribe of support,’” says Feldmann. “We’re going to create that tribe for every women-owned startup we can.
“We’re taking the excitement we all felt during these ‘empowering women’ days and doing something meaningful, something ongoing, something that can keep women winning.”
November’s event to celebrate women entrepreneurs
A day-long learning and networking event of workshops and speakers is also being planned for November for everyone who enters this year’s contests, as well as women entrepreneurs and “want-to-be” entrepreneurs throughout southeastern Wisconsin.
“The event will focus on firing up women business owners, harnessing their passion and providing skills that further help them in leveraging their new businesses,” Feldmann says.
A Wisconsin native who launched her first marketing business in 2013, Feldmann says she’s wanted to do something to support women entrepreneurs since she was a start-up.
“A business plan matters, it’s key to your success – but even more so, you need determination. It’s a mindset. If you stop focusing on ‘what if’ and ‘someday,’ and decide to make it TODAY, the fear fades and real change starts to happen.
“I was talking with my business coach about doing it someday, and he said, ‘Why someday? Why not now?’”
You can find more information and contest rules are here.
Ready to apply?