What do you need to do to grow your business online? There is so much conflicting information out there, and it can be difficult to figure out what you should actually invest your time and resources into.
In this episode, which originally aired as episode 89 of the Christian Woman Leadership Podcast, I’m breaking down the 3 essentials you need to grow an audience or business online.
There is no one size-fits-all solution for you as a business owner. But there are some general guidelines that I can recommend and that’s what I hope to do in this conversation.
One caveat: this episode is specifically for those who need to grow an audience online. If you are a service provider, you may not need to do all the things I talk about in this episode. For more on who needs to grow an audience, check out episode 4.
The 3 Essentials to Growing Your Business Online:
Essential 1: A Website
Your website is your main hub – the thing that you own in the online world. It is the main place you want to send people to learn about you and what you do.
Some people want to build a business without a website, and I strongly caution against that. While I don’t think you have to have a website right away, I do think it should be something you create within the first several months of your business.
So what does your website need to have?
You can get some great tips about what your website needs to have from Storybrand.
Here are a few of my tips as well:
- Keep it simple and clear.
- Keep it about THEM (i.e. the person you’re trying to reach).
- Use consistent colors and fonts (i.e. create a basic brand even if you can’t do full branding right now).
“Start simple, get fancy later.” – Amy Porterfield
What you need to get started for a WordPress site:
- A domain name – you can often buy this through your hosting service, or you can buy it independently through a domain service such as NameCheap. Typically costs $10-15/year.
- A hosting service, such as Siteground. Typically costs $5-20/month.
- A WordPress theme. You can get plenty of free versions, or you can use something like Divi, which is what I use.
Essential 2: An Email List
An email list is another element that you own. Just like your website, you have control over your website, unlike social media.
DO NOT be fooled by big numbers on FB or IG or any other platform… if those numbers are big, but they are not buyers and/or you don’t have a way to communicate with them if that platform goes down or the algorithm changes or your account gets shut down, then those numbers mean nothing.
How do you start building your email list?
- Choose an email service provider. I recommend ConvertKit because of its features and abilities. There are other services such as Mailerlite or MailChimp.
- Create a lead magnet or “freebie” that will appeal to your ideal client or customer or student.
- Send emails to your list on a regular basis.
If you need 1:1 support with this, you may reach out for a consultation where I can help you individually.
Essential 3: Content
Let’s define what I mean by content. Content is anything you put out as an idea or thought into the world. So that can be posting a blog post, sharing a podcast episode, or doing a video on YouTube, for example. BUT it also can be anything you post on social media.
As I shared earlier, I’m not a fan of building your business on social media. But I think that sometimes, if posting to your Facebook page is easier than posting a full blog post, then just do it!
Don’t overcomplicate it.
A warning about social media
The biggest trap I see happening with social media is that you’re trying to be all the places. And I want to tell you right now: STOP.
It’s much better to start by focusing on 1-2 social platforms, be consistent, learn what works… then over time, add in another platform if it makes sense.
My best investment
I’ve invested in learning a lot about social media over the years, but the best investment I’ve made is in the Grow Your Audience course from Rachel Miller.
That course is closed right now, but you can grab this free resource from Rachel to help you with knowing what to post on Facebook: 23 Conversation Starters for Facebook Pages and Groups. This will help you with creating content that will get people talking on social, which is the whole point!
Save your content!
One last thing about content: make sure you save your content somewhere. Especially if you decide to post on social for now instead of creating a blog or podcast or video channel… please please please make sure you copy and paste your posts (especially longer ones) into a safe place like Google Docs or Evernote.
Resources or Links Mentioned:
- Episode 1: Introducing the Christian Woman Business Podcast
- Episode 2: The Shine Online Framework
- Episode 4: You Need an Audience (or Do You?)
- Christian Woman Leadership Podcast Episode 89 (original and full content of this episode)
“There is no one size-fits-all solution for you as a business owner.”
“Not everyone needs to grow an audience online.”
Connect with Esther:
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