Jason Richter – CEO & Owner, 701 Studios
701 Studios, a company that helps customers get their brand out and enhance their online presence through web development, search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing and online advertising, has been in business for five years to date. While owner Jason Richter didn’t imagine pursuing this full-time at the beginning, it took off much quicker than he expected.
As he serves companies of all sizes with a special focus on small to medium businesses, Richter is offering a collaborative, tailored and client-focused experience through his significant background that he’s formed through years of passion in the field.
What was your journey like for you to get to the position you’re at today?
I created a successful online business using a skill-set of web advertising, SEO and marketing techniques. People in the community started reaching out to me to help them with their online presence. After I started doing this, I appreciated the added value and fulfillment in the personal connections that I formed and was not getting with my online-only business. That’s when I made the decision to shift focus and work with local businesses in helping them achieve their business goals while still running my online company.
Which parts of taking this risk will stick with you forever?
Getting my first client was the most memorable for me. Starting a business takes time and effort. You think about how things are going to go, you plan everything out, then your first customer contacts you and it instantly becomes real. It’s an amazing and rewarding feeling to start your own company.
What steps were the hardest when taking the leap to start 701 Studios?
The idea of putting yourself out there can be intimidating thinking that others might not find value in the service you are working to provide.
What was a typical day in your life like when you were beginning 701 Studios?
When I first opened 701 Studios, I was constantly trying to open new doors by making connections with people. A typical day for us was making calls and getting the brand name out in the community.
What would you have done differently if you could go back and start again, knowing what you know now?
If I could go back and start again, I would try to attend more community events. Getting your brand and name out there makes a world of difference. Once these connections were made, I leveraged my website and other online presences to find new customers.
What advice do you have for readers considering taking this leap?
Be ready to work long hours. There will be times when you are discouraged and wonder if it’s all worth it but know in the end that once things are up and running you will look back at all the work and be proud of your accomplishments, and even if things don’t always go your way you will learn a lot along the journey and meet amazing people.
What else would you like to add regarding your personal experience in taking this risk?
I truly believe that if you are willing to put in the work and utilize people around you that are willing to help, such as mentors, that starting a business is something everyone should try. It’s a uniquely rewarding experience and the knowledge gained is irreplaceable.
What made you decide that the Bis-Man area would be a great place to start a business?
We decided on the Bismarck-Mandan area because it’s a supportive community that I was fortunate enough to grow up in and I believe we have a different approach to web development that made us unique. We came up with a plan that was cost-effective for businesses to get started and we were excited to offer it in the area.