What's a Service Guide?
Your Service Guide is a page or section on your site OR a downloadable PDF that contains information on:
- Who you are
- Who you work with
- What you do
- How you do it
- How to work with you
Ideally your website will do this as well, but your Service Guide may go a little deeper, and is (mainly) for people who are warm to hot leads.
No website? No problem!
The awesome thing about a Service Guide is that it can [temporarily] replace your website. If your site is going through a rebuild, or you are venturing into a new service offering, your Service Guide may be the best, and fastest, way to get that info into leads’ hands.
What to put in it
So this is where I am going to copy the list from above, and add some examples:
- Who you are – a brief bio, with info related to the services you are including
- Who you work with – your target customer profile
- What you do – service(s) you are offering, as well as related services, if that so be the case. e.g. while I provide consulting services for alleviating admin anxiety, someone may benefit from knowing how to use Dubsado as a means to do that. Or, they may be interested in knowing if their website will faciliate easier admin. Orrrr they may want an accelerated, in-person experience that I may not list on my site, but the Service Guide may be a well to upsell to that option.
- How you do it – even if I put the steps to the service on my website, I can go into more detail in my Service Guide.
- How to work with you – outside of your booking and payment info, tips for preparing to work with you can go in your guide as well. For example, I would love to assist you in creating or updating your workflows, but first I need to know what it is we’re creating or updating. Through my Service Guide I’ll tell you a little of what your onboarding homework will look like, and that it’s best if you get into the mindset of making small incremental changes as opposed to attacking the whole project at once (and becoming more overwhelmed)
- Who you’ve worked with – testimonials, short case studies of former clients, portfolio pieces
How to make it
Alright. Best practice says to create this document in inDesign, then export it as a PDF. Why? Because inDesign is best for laying out text heavy documents. I also love doing these in inDesign because you can make interactive PDFs. What’s that? Clickable links and such.
When you don’t have inDesign, or having me lay it out for you isn’t in your budget, you most definitely can use the tools you have at your disposal: Canva, Word, Google Docs/Slides, PowerPoint, or Publisher. No judgment here, just follow these rules, no matter what tool you’re using:
Keep it mad simple.
Yes, there may be a lot of information that a potential client needs to know, but this is a first or second date, not your engagement party.
Clear, succinct and concise writing is a skill that needs to be respected more, says the girl who sends you a novella as opposed to a “short” email. Do you understand how much info is actually in my masterpieces, though? Quick and to the point is the goal, even if it ends up being 10 pages.
Do NOT let your text run from edge to edge. DO. NOT.
Be careful that your text doesn’t blend into the page or image background. People don’t book what they can’t read.
Respect the font.
Two fonts, three TOPS. Distinguish between a font for your body text and your headers. And for the love of God and all that is Holy, do not write paragraphs in script or handwritten fonts, and don’t use them with all caps. Thanks.
That’s it. That’s the rule.
Compress the PDF.
Large email attachments or downloads are frowned upon. Do yourself – and your recipient a favor – by running your PDF through smallpdf.com to compress/reduce the size.
A word of caution.
If you don’t want your Service Guide to be publicly available, do not use URL shortening services like bit.ly unless you have a premium account that supports making them private.
When do you send it?
Your Service Guide gets shared during the lead generation process, but essentially when and how you deliver it is up to you. Decide if you want it to be openly available or if you will send in exchange for the completion of a lead generation, opt-in or contact form.
Annnnnd that’s about the guide of it.