The Design Business Show 218: Creating a Simply Profitable Design Business with Shannon Mattern

Director : Melissa Burkheimer | March 6, 2023
Check out episode 218 of The Design Business Show with Shannon Mattern to learn about the Web Designer Academy and the Simply Profitable Designer Summit

Shannon Mattern is the founder of the Web Designer Academy, where she helps web designers work less and make more money.

She’s also the host of the Profitable Web Designer Podcast and the Simply Profitable Designer Summit, where she shares strategies and advice to help web designers create freedom, flexibility, and financial independence.

Here’s what we covered on the episode:

Shannon’s Background + The Web Designer Academy  

  • Shannon got her start by solving business problems for the nonprofit she worked at, where she did marketing and tech work – she was self-taught when it came to building and running their website
  • How a vendor of the nonprofit hired Shannon to do some website work for him on the side, which is how she got her first client and then kept getting clients through word of mouth and says she felt bad charging people even $25/hour because she didn’t understand the value of what she was doing
  • After listening to a podcast episode, Shannon learned she could earn a commission through affiliate marketing by helping people set up their blogs through WordPress
  • Even though Shannon was teaching people WordPress for free, people were still asking Shannon to do the work for them, so she got her pricing, systems, mindset, and boundaries in place so she could work with these clients and quit her day job
  • How Shannon created the Web Designer Academy in 2016, where she teaches new web designers everything she knows
  • Shannon explains how she got people to sign up for her free DIY WordPress Training with their email, which grew her email list, and shares that she used affiliate links to keep the training free
  • To go all in on the Web Designer Academy, Shannon retired her free DIY WordPress Training last year
  • How Shannon got the opportunity to do a speaking engagement where she offered to teach others what she was doing, which is how the Web Designer Academy was born
  • Shannon shares how rewarding and fun it was to help others through the Web Designer Academy, which is why she decided to go all in on it in 2020 to empower women web designers and teach them how to run their business

The Simply Profitable Designer Summit + Intellectual Property

  • If you’ve been around for a while on Episode 26 and Episode 132 of The Design Business Show, I interviewed Krista Miller, a web developer who started the Simply Profitable Designer Summit, but now Shannon is the host of it
  • The Simply Profitable Designer Summit is coming up on March 21st – 23rd, 2023
  • Shannon explains how she and Krista met through Shannon’s 5-Day Website Challenge and how Krista invited Shannon to speak at the Simply Profitable Designer Summit
  • Krista created her Summit in a Box offer, which was doing well, so she wanted to step away from one-on-one client work, and the summit
  • Because The Simply Profitable Designer Summit was so pivotal for Shannon to get in front of her ideal clients and build relationships, she told Krista she would run the summit for her, and they eventually worked out a deal for Shannon to take over the summit
  • If you want to hear the details of Shannon and Krista’s deal, listen to episode 182 of Krista’s Summit Host Hangout Podcast   
  • When it comes to your value and pricing, Shannon says to take yourself out of the equation and look at your client, what is going to be possible for them, what they are going to create in their business, and the long-term value of your offer
  • Some people want to do it themselves and will never hire you, but some people don’t want to do it themselves, and they can’t wait to find you, and those are your people.
  • Shannon explains that in the Web Designer Academy, they talk about investment-minded clients and expense-minded clients, and they teach having package-based pricing based on those clients
  • You get to pick your price and then go out and sell the value of it instead of letting someone else tell you the value of it
  • Shannon’s Profitable Pricing Framework Training for designers that talks about her pricing philosophy
  • How the value of your entire system and process that you do for clients is your intellectual property and can also be packaged up and sold separately
  • If you have a process or something that feels easy to you and you love, go all in on it because that’s what makes business easy
  • Here is my affiliate link to The Simply Profitable Designer Summit – get your free ticket for full access to the presentations through the end of the day on March 23rd and upgrade to an all-access pass for lifetime access to presentations or the power pack to get speaker bonuses and courses
  • Check out the Web Designer Academy website and connect with Shannon on Instagram


Links mentioned:

Web Designer Academy

Profitable Web Designer Podcast

Simply Profitable Designer Summit

Episode 26 of The Design Business Show with Krista Miller 

Episode 132 of The Design Business Show with Krista Miller 

Episode 182 – Summit Host Hangout Podcast with Shannon Mattern

Profitable Pricing Framework Training

Connect with Shannon on Instagram


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