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Ain’t nothing more exciting than making moola doing something you love!
Becoming an entrepreneur is exhilarating. Once you make the decision to start, a lengthy list of to-dos often follows suit. Or if you are reading this and have already started your business, maybe you are going through a rough patch, trying to stay focused. A business plan is step one, but a marketing plan is the breadwinner. An idea is nothing without execution and execution requires strategy.
You can have the world’s greatest product but without the marketing, your bank account may never see the light of day. The list below will walk you through six critical elements you need to check off to ensure a healthy launch.
Occasionally people skip this step and go straight to social media. Starting with building your tribe is important but once you begin to receive orders asking your customers to “DM” you for an invoice is unprofessional. Marketing will become easier when you have a website set up. Even if your website is basic, having a domain name to call your own will take your business to the next level. Owning a website is like having your own piece of internet real estate. Make that move!
Once you have a website set up, the next big operation should be setting up your blog. Search engines such as Google & Bing operate on search engine optimization. The more words you have on your website related to the industry that you operate in, the higher you will rank when someone in your area goes searching for services. Of course there is more to it but relevancy is key! You do not have to post a bunch of blog posts at once but once or twice a week will give you time to create or buy content and slowly build up the blog portion of your site. A blog markets itself because people will read, share and recognize you as a leader in your industry.
Pick your top two social media platforms. For most businesses at the moment, these would most likely be Instagram and Facebook. These platforms both have a great conversion rate and work wonders for promoting your business and getting traffic over to your website + blog. Don’t just post to these sites, have a strategy. Plan out what you want to teach your audience for the month about your industry and make sure it correlates with your blog posts and website visuals. Cohesiveness is key!
You must know who your target audience is. Of course, there may be a large portion of society that can use your product or service but for marketing purposes, you need to narrow down to a specific niche and target audience. When you begin to run paid ads on Instagram and Facebook or even with Google, you will need to narrow down your target audience by gender, age, location and even hobbies. Be prepared!
The gold is in the list! Building an email list is one the most underrated coalmines out there. even if you never plan on selling anything to your list, which is an insane assumption you want to know who is interested in your products. People sign up for email lists when they feel they identify with a brand and want to learn more. Your weekly email is a way of staying in contact with your potential customers and getting to know your business tribe better. Become a friend! You do this with weekly educational emails.
Having a reviews page on your website or even attached in your weekly emails shows potential customers that you have worked with clients before. Even if the people who have written reviews are not exactly like the customer or may not have the same needs, the fact that someone else has tried your product or service makes other people want to get in on the action as well.
Marketing is a science. It may be the most uncomfortable part of becoming an entrepreneur. You know you wanted to start a business but thought that if you simply created a good product, that it would sell itself. This mantra no longer exists. With all the competing brands on the market and with potential consumers becoming more knowledgeable with evolving needs, business has changed. Knowing how to market will allow you to take control of gaining new customers and growing your business to reach more people on the internet and in person.
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