We are now firmly in the digital age and it is changing the world. The 9-5 is slowly dying and in its place the digital economy is starting to flex its muscles.
The internet has become so central to most aspects of all of our lives that massive opportunities are available for those of us who want to release our inner entrepreneur.
In other words, YOU can decide and even BE your brand.
So what’s required to be a part of this new booming digital economy and how can you be a success?
Here are seven crucial aspects that you need to get clear on.
Decide This Is What You Want
I’ll tell you straight. It’s NOT easy but, if you’re serious about it, it IS life changing.
Setting up your own online business takes determination and commitment over a long period of time, exactly the same as for a traditional bricks and mortar business.
This undertaking requires you to sacrifice much of your time. If you are still working the 9-5 whilst building your business you can double that time and commitment.
It’s crucial that you are completely clear that this is what you want to do with your life. If your commitment is total and genuine then you will embrace the hard work and you will not fail.
With the right mindset, you will step into the challenge and enjoy it rather than be consumed by it. You will drive forward every day, find solutions to problems, enjoy unleashing your creativity and thrive on connecting with others on the same journey.
The opportunity that this presents for you is astonishing.
Understand Yourself And What You Can Offer To The World
The internet is crowded with literally millions of people trying to sell their stuff.
You need to figure out a way to stand out from the crowd, in a way that screams honesty and integrity. This isn’t easy but is possible.
Before you even begin, you do need to spend time getting to know yourself. It might seem like a strange question but ask yourself, ‘who am I?’ You need to understand what drives you in life, what you like and dislike about yourself, what skills and areas of knowledge you have.
It helps massively to be an introspective and reflective person.
If you have a natural thirst for wanting to understand yourself then this will usually replicate in your world as well. This gives you an advantage.
People can see through ‘get rich quick scams’ and unethical enterprises and instead want someone who can solve their problem in an authentic, value driven, empathetic manner.
If you understand yourself and what you offer and are comfortable marketing BRAND YOU then you have a great chance of success.
Everyone in this world has a unique purpose in life. If you can figure out yours and then apply it online you could go places.
Define Your Niche
You can make money online in virtually any niche.
The good news for you is that means you can pick a topic you are truly passionate about and create a business around it!
The concept is as follows:
- Pick a niche
- Create regular, value driven content within the niche
- Promote your business or other services and products linked to your business to the people that are most likely to be interested in what you offer
Personally, I was massively excited about the opportunity to create a business around the things in my life that I love doing. How on earth could that possibly be described as work?!
You may be thinking “what is that I’m passionate about and be an authority on?” This is a really common question but, trust me, once you start really thinking, you will come up with tonnes of ideas about what you love in life and what you are knowledgeable about.
I did a simple exercise to help me decide on my niche.
First, I wrote a list of every single thing in my life I was interested in OR had knowledge of. I then circled the things in that list that fell into both categories. Finally, I looked at my list and chose the ONE thing that I was passionate about AND had good knowledge of.
I was left with ‘positive change and lifestyle blog!’
But you don’t need to fret too much if you don’t think you have too much to offer in terms of knowledge.
The great think in the online business world is that you only need to be one step ahead of your audience and they will see you as an expert and as someone who can show them the way.
As long as you are passionate, authentic, committed and empathetic to your audience’s needs, you will go places.
So, really start thinking. What’s your niche?
Identify Your Target Audience
There’s a saying in the online business world that goes ‘if you market to everybody, you market to nobody’.
And it’s so true.
There is literally no point in trying to please everybody. Just as in life generally, you will only fail!
Instead, you need to dig deep into what type of person will be interested in your business, in what you have to say and in what services and products you are promoting.
There are five main questions
that you need to answer in order to identify your target audience. To give you
a better understanding, I’m going to tell you how I answered these questions to
gain clarity on my target audience:
- Who are they?
They are in a ‘traditional’ career and in their mid 30s to mid 50s. They are educated, spiritual, intelligent, kind, open-minded and a little lost!
- What do they do?
They work in an office or otherwise in a 9-5 role and feel trapped in a hierarchal and political structure. They know this isn’t what they want to do for the rest of their working life.
Where do they spend their time online?
- They spend a lot of time on YouTube, subscribing to various channels based around personal development and the Law of Attraction. They also belong to a number of spiritual and motivational type Facebook groups. They Google topics like ‘how can I start a business that gives me total freedom’ and ‘how can I be my best possible self’
- What do they want?
They want more out of their life. They want to feel like they are making more of a positive difference to society. They want more control of their life and to do work that is meaningful and fulfilling. They want financial and geographical freedom. Above all, they want more time to spend with their family and loved ones.
- What is stopping them from getting it?
They know the solution to their problem is out there somewhere but they just don’t know where. They are overwhelmed by information overload on the internet, which sometimes leads to disenchantment. They don’t have any clarity on where their starting point is and what they need to do to get started on their journey.
After completing the above exercise, you may find that your target audience is people just like you. That’s completely fine and, if anything, will make things easier for you!
Everyone is looking to be influenced, whether they know it or not. This includes your target audience.
It’s up to you how you want to harness your powers of influence on your target audience.
Do you want to manipulate them, take them for granted and try to force them into a sale, as is fairly commonplace online?
Or do you want to rise above the competition and INSPIRE them with your influence?
There are two key attributes required to create content that is engaging and value driven for your audience – the ability to listen and the ability to be authentic.
LISTEN to them carefully! They aren’t really interested in YOUR story, unless it relates to theirs.
Instead, they want to know how you can show them the way to improve THEIR life.
They want somebody to listen to them, realise their struggle, relate to their situation and provide a route to a better life.
And allow yourself to be vulnerable. Vulnerability is authenticity. And your authenticity is your unique selling point.
Your audience will love you for it.
So each time you create a piece of content, via
a blog, Facebook post, YouTube video or anything else, get inside the heads of
What’s bothering them? How is their world
looking for them today? What solution can you provide them with?
Make your relationship with your audience a quality one by giving VALUE, VALUE AND MORE VALUE!!
Build Your Audience And Drive Traffic
It goes without saying that in order to be a success you need to get people to read your content. There’s no point creating amazing blogs or engaging videos and if nobody is interacting with them!
You need to decide how you are going to drive internet traffic to your website so that you can build your audience and in the process expand your business.
There are three ways to drive traffic:
- Organically via search engines (e.g. Google or Bing)
Imagine someone Googles ‘perfect life in view’ and my website appears on the first page of the Google search.
If that person clicks on the link and is taken to my website, they have arrived organically. The person hasn’t arrived as a result of an advertising campaign, which means I haven’t spent any money for this to happen.
However, I might not have spent money for this to occur but it’s more
than likely that I have spent a lot of time.
In order for websites to appear on the first page of Google, the creator of the website must prioritise two main factors:
- Create quality content. This means excellent blogs and images and ensuring all of your content is tightly written, congruent and relevant to your niche.
This takes time as you need to think of engaging ideas, find a way to structure your blog so as to make it interesting for your audience and pick images that are visually appealing and fit in with the themes of the blog
- SEO optimise. SEO stands for search engine optimisation and is the method of increasing the number and quality of visitors to a website by improving rankings search engines via various algorithms.
You can do this by linking between blogs on your website, connecting to other blogs and websites that are congruent to your own and via social sharing with Facebook, Twitter and Instagram etc.
There is a lot of science behind SEO and the fact that the algorithms used by search engines in order to rank content change regularly means that it’s incredibly difficult to get your website on page one of a search. However, it is possible.
- Paid Advertising
The only way to ensure visitors arrive at your website is via a paid advertising campaign.
In order to do this you need to decide on your monthly budget and be prepared to invest this budget for twelve months with a possibility of no return.
There is no sure fire way to guarantee the success of an advertising campaign and it requires a great level of trial and error.
You need to figure out ways to make your adverts eye catching and make them stand out from others.
You also need to decide what platform you want to advertise on. Are you going to use Google, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram or maybe another platform? YouTube tends to be the most expensive followed by Facebook and then there are cheaper options.
Make sure you focus on just ONE platform and concentrate on becoming an expert marketer using that platform.
Trying to spread yourself across more than one will only result in overwhelm and you will never master any area.
How can you own traffic, you may ask?
You do this by taking customers who click on your advert or arrive organically to a landing page (sometimes called a lead capture page), which then asks them to input their name and email address.
If they comply with this and enter their details you can now market whatever you want to them!
This means that you can create yet more value driven content, only this time in the form of an email. You can then create email campaigns using an email autoresponder such as Aweber and send strategically timed emails to the people on your email list.
This is a brilliant way to convert leads into paying customers as the person may be undecided at the point that they receive their first email. However, after four or five emails, all containing more solutions to their problems, they will likely be more than ready to buy!
Decide Which Digital Business System To Use For Your Education
Whilst immensely rewarding, setting up your own online business is also a minefield. There are THOUSANDS of things you need to learn, from website design to creating content to launching advertising campaigns to personal development to setting up your email autoresponder to creating and maintaining your social media pages. And on it goes!
Unless you are a complete genius the chances are that, faced with this plethora of challenges, you will quickly become overwhelmed and give up.
That’s where a digital business system comes in and it’s at this point that I want to recommend Six Figure Mentors to you!
I chose SFM to assist me with my journey to becoming an online entrepreneur and I haven’t looked back since. SFM provides step-by-step training, an exclusive private community that you can leverage any time day or night, a dedicated support team, weekly training websinars and live events.
You even get your own personal consultant to help you achieve and exceed your personal goals.
SFM effectively enable you to fast track your way to success by tapping into their cutting edge tools and resources. Not only do they help you develop the digital marketing skills you need to thrive online but they provide a world class education to enable you to become the best version of yourself.
You can decide to go your own way or you can go all in and let SFM help you build your Perfect Life!