April 17, 2018

6 Essential Steps For New Digital Business Owners

essential tips for new business owners

After you create a website, blog or online shop, there are some essential steps a website business owner must take, if you want your site to bring you business.

If you believe you can create a website and that's it, job done, I'm sorry to say it's not!

The digital landscape is crowded, that said, there are plenty of sales opportunities but you need to pay attention to the detail and work hard to get noticed. The name of the again is getting people's attention. For me, that's what marketing is all about. 

Answer this. You're now online. What are you planning to do to get people to your site?

Because there are so many people like you, battling for that sale, you have to consistently promoting your biz.

The good news is, I have some tips, to help you on your way. If you want people to visit your site, see what you offer and buy from you, follow these steps to lay your foundation for getting noticed.

Step 1: Install the Yoast Plugin

If you haven't installed it yet, this is the first thing you need to do!

As a business blogger, one of your primary objectives is to drive traffic to your site right?

You want to start getting found by the Search Engines, agreed?

There's a nifty free plugin for WordPress site called Yoast and if you're afraid of SEO or not quite sure what it means, then this is the most easiest way of understanding it.

Yoast guides you through the steps that you need to take after writing each blog post to ensure that your blog is indexed by the google bots.

Visit Yoast, download the plugin then upload it into your site. Work through the set up step by step. It's quite logical. You can purchase their course which shows you step by step how to install and configure it - for $99 or to be honest, I did mine myself. You can also search on You Tube for FREE tutorials, which is what I advise my clients.

The bottom line is, this will improve your chances of being found enormously. You will also need to make all your site content (pages and posts) SEO friendly. read my post here to learn how to do this.

Step 2: Build Authority

  • Building authority within your chosen niche will build trust with your readers, followers and potential buyers.
  • Not only that it will build respect amongst your peers and could even lead to additional partnerships and joint ventures opening you up to new audiences and more sales.
  • By building your authority you can position yourself as the "go to" lady for all things in your niche! How cool would that be.

The key is to show that you are the expert, a thought leader. After all you are aren't you?! Even if you're starting out, the trick is to behave as though you are. Once you get yourself into the "expert" mindset, your followers will begin to see you as one. It's true! 

So what things can you do to build your authority?

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    Write a regular Blog Post on the subject you're an expert on - I recommend you do this monthly, if not at least fortnightly to maintain your visibility and illustrate that extent of your knowledge on the subject. Writing content on your subject will always assert your authority but it's important to do it regularly.
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    Give yourself a title - A title or moniker is an excellent way to put you at the centre of your niche as the "go to" expert. For example, if you're a fashion designer specialising in retro chic clothing you could call yourself "The Hippy Chick" or if your a crime writer, how about "The Female Sherlock". Do you see what I mean? A name also sticks and you will help people find you more easily. Add your new moniker on your about page and across all your social media profiles.
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    Collect Testimonials - Get as much feedback for your work as possible from your clients, whether it's a project, a presentation, coaching, everything! Ask your clients  

Step 3: Build Your Email List

The next essential thing to do after you create a business website or blog is to begin attracting traffic and acquiring email addresses. It is vital to your business growth. This allows you to start building a relationship with potential new clients.

Once you are able to nurture people they will be more likely to purchase from you. This is also true to help encourage repeat purchases.

By being in direct contact you can send your customers and potential clients coupons to help you drive conversion and and build loyalty to your brand.

You might think that people less willing to handover their email addresses and whilst that's true for some people, there're still millions of people engaging with companies because they've . handed over their email address. 

How many companies are arriving in your inbox each day because you handed over your email address?

How to build your email List

There are several ways you can build your email list from your website or blog:

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    Offer a freebie - this is a "lead magnet" (a checklist, a guide, an ebook) that you offer visitors. It must contain high perceived value in order for the visitor to hand over their email address. 
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    At the checkout - ask clients for their email addresses. This maintains contact and gives you the opportunity to ask if they would like to opt into your marketing news to receive promotional codes. NOTE -  that you MUST ask the client's permission to use their email address for marketing purposes.
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    Newsletter Sign Up - less effective, you could ask people to sign up to your weekly / monthly newsletter. 

Step 4: Build Your Social Media Presence

To increase your visibility and build your brand, don't rule out using the social media platforms. 

If you're not active on any of the social media platforms, it's going to be hard for potential clients to find you unless you're paying for Google Ads or using other advertising methods, which costs money.

Whatever industry you're in you need to be posting regular updates, so you stay in customer's minds. 

The only way to do this is by developing a social media marketing strategy that will connect you with your potential client base.

Choose one platform - the one where most of your clients are and post on a daily basis with good, valuable content. It doesn't have to be long. Mix it up and create variety. Do it well for at least 2 weeks and notice the difference.

Try and other platform and work out your strategy from there. Where do gain most followers from? Where do you get most engagement from What are your most popular posts?

Finally use dashboard and schedulers such as Hootesuite, Planoly, Meet Edgar and Tailwind.

Schedulers for Social Media Marketing save you many hours so you can concentrate on your other business needs and serving your customers. Instead of your day being interrupted by posting your latest content, using a scheduler will allow to schedule all your posts in one morning.

Step 5: Build Your Business & Personal Brand

build your brand

Your brand is the heart of your business.

It's more than your business name, logo and fancy font!

For your brand to resonate with clients it needs to impact them on an emotional level.

Yes, the aesthetics of your brand are super important as they form part of your overall marketing strategy but more often than not, people want to hear your story. 

How often have you heard yourself asking a successful business owner "Wow that's amazing, how did you get started on that?" or "what inspired you to do that / make that?"

I want you to think about your story.

Then tell everyone about it! Share it! You don't have to share everything, just the important bits.

Write down 5 things that have inspired you to do what you're doing!

Weave your story into your About Us page and use it to write blog posts.

Share your story. They will love to hear it and share it amongst their friends.

Create your brand signature by researching colours, fonts, logo and tag lines that will emotionally resonate with your fans.

If you haven't started yet, do it today. Start building your brand!

Can I DIY my Brand?

Yes. Many new business owners don't have the funds to enlist the work of an agency. Look at using them at a later date when you can afford it, if you feel you need to.

The key thing is to ensure that you're happy that you're brand represents your business.

I've got a fab course in the Academy which takes you though the whole Brand Building process (in case you're interested!).

Step 6: Build Your Professional Network

Have you counted how many people are in your network? Look across your email list (personal and professional) and social platforms. There might be a potential customer there. If not they all have a network so one of the quickest ways of growing your leads is to tap into your own network.

That's where my first business leads came from. The benefit of this approach is you already have some level of trust.

Here are some of the things that personal friends can help. Don't be afraid to reach out:

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    Feedback - I've used my friends to give me feedback on my blog. Both from a content and targeting perspective. Did my content make sense and hit the bullseye, especially to the group of readers I'm targeting. Ask for honest feedback, rather than nice and polite responses. After all, you want to be the best at what you do!
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    Resources - I mention this in my free training. You will be amazed at how forth coming friends can be when it comes to helping you out. DO you have friends who are amateur or pro photographers, copy writers, website and teccie experts? Tapping into your social network can help remove some of the workload and stress.
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    VA - Do you have a friend who's looking for a role as a Virtual Assistant? Whilst employing friends isn't for everyone, you could ask them if they'd be interested to run your social media activities.

Building your professional networks

Start making friends with peers within your niche and industry. As well as providing support for each other, this is how collaborations are born. If you can get in front of other industry expert's audiences, you can start to increase your reach.

Whenever you adopt this strategy be sure to create genuine relationships with people that you respect, admire and trust.

Take time for the relationship to develop before pushing for a collaboration.A genuine, organic approach is always the best approach.

Next Steps

Now that you have your blog / website set up, what one thing are you going to do to take it to the next level?

Sally00