6 Marketing Activities Solopreneurs Must Start Doing Today
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Running a business, keeping all its aspects in perfect coordination was never easy. Solopreneurship, is certainly not a recent phenomenon that we see in our markets today. It existed with much more challenges in the 70s and 80s. I have seen my uncle struggle as a solopreneur back in 1976. When I compare my venture to his, I do see more risks involved back then. The comparative ease in solopreneurship today, can be credited to the internet. Getting the word out about your business and competing with the biggies in your niche, has become much easier. The internet has managed to make the world its oyster, isn’t it? The barriers to entering a new business are much lower and the dreams of starting your own ventures clearer and defined.
There are some basic challenges that solopreneurs face, irrespective of the generation they belong to. They are,
The fear of failure is real.
You are not swimming in a pool of money.
Time management becomes an issue when you already have too much on your plate.
Skepticism about scaling up your business.
Trusting others with your venture when outsourcing work becomes a problem.
The sense of isolation can be depressing, it’s important to prioritize networking.
I shall stick to marketing problems in this blog, as most of my readers are digital natives. Marketing in this era has changed with the advent of newer technologies, mostly for good. There are cons too when it comes to thriving as a solopreneur in today’s competitive world too. More and more businesses are coming up with their unique ideas to cater to the same target audience as yours.
Worried about which mistakes to avoid as a solopreneur today? Here are 6 pointers that will help you work up your marketing game economically as a solopreneur :
- Personal Branding:
As a solopreneur, you are the biggest brand of your company and you should do personal branding specially if you are in the business of coaching, teaching or any other service. You believe it or not, your target audience wants to see you and they will judge your service by you and this is more of an opportunity than fear. I have seen many solopreneurs struggling with these two problems when they think of personal branding
What will I say.
Are they willing to see or hear me ? Come on I am not a model.
The answer to these questions are
You have to say about all the How, What and Why of your service delivery or products and only you can say it because you have felt it and that’s a unique content which your audience wants to know about.
Real is the new cool. In this era of transparency, your audience wants to see you, the real face of the company rather than any model or fake faces.
Niel patel, the modern day digital guru has suggested to focus on these 7 points before stepping into personal branding.
a) Create Your Personal Brand Vision
b) Define Your Target Audience
c) Build Up Your Online And Offline Assets
d) Build Your Brand Through Outreach
e) Get Free Press Coverage (v. imp)
f) Connect With Mentors
g) Monitor Your Brand
h) Be yourself and don't imitate others.
Invest in your website. After you, the second impression a probable client would have of you, is your website. Apart from keeping an eye on the basics of your UI/UX, color scheming and spaces, there are some major things you should not miss. Be very particular that your website states clearly, what you are into/ what you do. Ask yourself these questions. Is your website mobile ready? Is it easy for the client to read and find it online? A well-designed website can bring you the green faster than you can imagine. Likewise, you have to make sure to give examples, back up your claims and convenient to reach you.
And once this is done, move towards Facebook Ads and Google AdWords. I know what you are thinking, these are expensive. But believe me, they bring in quicker leads for the very same reason. Have a highly priced product/service you need extra attention on, go for Facebook Ads or google ads.
- Testimonial marketing
Your testimonials will be your greatest selling points. Make sure you have prepared some 3-4 short questions to ask all your clients and mention them on your website (specially on the home page). Second, give them Google review link and Facebook company page review link to fill in. This will involve some time investment of your client (30 mins) so you can offer some freebies to your clients or have a very good relationship so they can do it without feeling like it is a time wastage.
- Go to networking events.
It doesn’t matter whether you are an extrovert or introvert, you should go to networking events to make real relations. You will not only have chances to get probable customer but also meet likeminded people who might be facing similar problems like you and might have a solution for the same. There are a lot of new and creative ideas of networking these days. Some events which I have attended are
Fuck up nights : Discussing their business failures.
Marketing speed dates: Marketers sit on one side and customers sit in front and get to talk for 10 minutes. After the bell, the customers change seats and shift to different marketer.
Relationship through social media
Public relationships can play a big role even in your solopreneur journey. This is the very reason big corporations have a separate department to take care of public relationships. However, it becomes a major issue when time is a big constraint. A smart way of doing this is by using community marketing and posting relevant stuffs. This way you can reach out to more audience in a lesser amount of time. Make sure you post relevant stuff for them, that is a valuable addition. This is a group of like-minded people, to whom marketing yourself becomes easier gradually with time. Here is what you can do
Make a facebook group involving your target customer : Post useful stuffs in the group and keep adding new relationships which you build in that group.
Post relevant stuffs: Do not forget to post all the relevant stuffs you do during your work hours: reading a blog, visiting a networking event or meeting someone and do not forget to tag relevant people who you were with, or who would love to see this post. Do it genuinely and not in a spamming way
- Write blogs
The fuss about Blogging and content is real, for good reasons:
A major characteristic of the digital natives is they are very well informed; they base their judgments on what they read online. Content can play a big role in promoting your product.
However, it is a major challenge to write/create content and then promote it given the time constraints solopreneurs already face. Even if you manage to write some posts for yourself, make sure you are consistent.
The smart way to do this is deciding early on the type of content you want to focus on. Check what you are best at and prepare a realistic schedule and stick to it religiously. If all this is too much work, it’s okay to take help from the array of freelance writers and content creators online.
Each solopreneurs journey is different and unique in its own way. The struggle is real and kind of here to stay. What will make you stronger, is your ability to sail through the high tides. It’s okay to take help and depend on others. What matters most is, you hold your strong grounds when most others fail to do so.