It’s time to focus on building a group of people in tune with what you put out.
September 10, 2018 4 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.
Tell me if this sounds familiar. You started your business around an idea — a way to help your target customers. It may be a brick-and-mortar type of business or you may have started it recently, which means the online component is huge. In either case, your marketing and lead generation abilities through the internet and social media are vitally important. There is a direct correlation between your online market and your revenue growth.
In 2017, ecommerce sales hit $5 trillion, according to Digital Commerce 360. In 2017, Amazon alone generated $178 billion dollars online according to the BBC. The numbers and opportunity online are staggering. The growth of your business will be determined by the efforts you make towards your online platform and online marketing. The number of potential customers using the internet will only increase as time rolls on.
While the opportunity is great, there’s a reason many entrepreneurs aren’t growing their business through the power of online — they have not built their audience and don’t have a plan to start building their audience. It’s the #1 reason businesses don’t experience explosive growth. You can do everything else right with your growth strategies but if you don’t have an audience you don’t have a potential customer base. Without that, you won’t get sales.
Your platform is not enough.
You can have the best-looking website, all the fancy software that optimizes your online platform, the best funnels, an impressive product or service that adds value to people’s lives, but you need people and customers to see it. No audience means no opportunity to convert.
When I say “audience,” I’m not talking about organically posting on social media. We have a great opportunity today to reach a captive audience on social media but the organic reach is low. Most of the major social media networks want you to pay to reach your audience. You can’t put all your eggs in the social media basket. A diverse-audience building plan will pay dividends for your business.
If you’re going to build an audience that buys what you sell, you should be building an email list along with your social media presence and getting exposure for your business through the media. It should be a multi-tiered strategy. Building the best platform online is not enough. You should be making twice the amount of effort to build an audience that sees it.
Build and adjust
The good thing is that we live in a time that allows us to build our audience in multiple ways with much more ease than in the past. You can build and give yourself options. Don’t focus too much on the building your platform, product, or service at the cost of not enough effort being spent on who will see and buy what they’re putting together.
Build your audience through diverse channels:
- Get interviewed on podcasts — some have millions of listeners.
- Create great content on your platform — it will bring in new readers that tell others about your good stuff and bring in more of an audience.
- Publish content on authority websites — the major business and personal development publications get millions of monthly visitors.
- Use SEO principles.
- Partner with other entrepreneurs who have an audience to strategically promote each other.
- Partner and train with entrepreneurs that have large Facebook groups.
You can use all of the avenues and more to build a loyal audience that ends up buying your products and services. There are many more. Explosive growth happens as your audience builds and responds to your marketing.
It starts with a good idea to build your business around. Then, building your website, social media presence, or physical location. After those foundational elements, it’s time to focus on building a group of people in tune with what you put out. And that group should be signed up for your email list, consuming your website, and following you on social media. That’s how you grow an audience that turns into customers.