You have passion, a huge vision and a burning desire to get your work and message into the world through your business – but how do you navigate your way through the mountains of conflicting information out there?
How do you know which advice to follow, or what to focus on first?
Our mission at Fempire is to help you cut through all the noise and help you focus on what matters most when it comes to establishing yourself as a sustainable, profitable business. Loyal customers and steady income are a result of your ability to develop trust and confidence in your brand, which takes time to build. But if you commit to implementing the following ten elements, and keep plugging away at your business with focus, passion, and determination, business success will be yours!
Here are our recommendations for the 10 most critical elements you need to implement for business success.
The Top 10 Most Important Elements That Will Set Your Business up for Success.
#1. A Professional-Looking Brand.
Don’t cut corners when it comes to your brand image. Remember, first impressions count, and in business it’s all about developing trust and confidence in you and your brand. Take the time to find a good, professional designer to create your logo, your brand colour palette and your brand fonts, and stick to your brand style consistently. Invest in some high quality portrait photos of yourself that allow your personality to shine through. It takes time to build brand awareness among your potential buyers, but it will be so much easier (and faster) if your brand looks professional.
#2. A Professional Website.
There’s a lot of advice out there about how you can build a business without a website and do all your marketing and sales through your social media channels. But if you take this approach you’re limiting yourself. Consumers searching for business in search engines will never find you if you don’t have a website. And most people will want to check out your website before they do business with you because they’re trying to establish whether they can trust and rely on you.
Your website builds brand awareness, allows you to be discoverable in search engines, establishes your credibility, and allows you to stay connected with your potential buyers through contact forms, blog comments, and your email list. Also, a website gives you the ability to do blogs, videos or podcasts – which can get you upwards of 4.5 times more leads! In this day in age, a website is a ‘must’ for your long term business success.
#3. Compelling Social Media Profiles.
In this modern age it’s essential that you have an online presence across multiple social media platforms. Your social media profiles display your credibility and authenticity. Choose at least two platforms that you will commit to and show up there consistently. You don’t have to be posting every day, but choose a consistency that you can commit to and maintain. Consistency and transparency shows that you are reliable and professional.
#4. Make Your Business Find-able.
Take some time to research the important long-form and short-form keywords that people are searching for in your niche and use these keywords across your website so that Google and other search engines can find you. Invest in your website SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) because you want to show up in search results when people are searching for services like yours. There’s a funny – but true! – saying:
Where’s the best place to hide a dead body? On page two of Google search results. – Anonymous.
You won’t get found without good SEO! Also, use appropriate hashtags so that you can be found across platforms like Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. SEO is essential for gaining paying customers. I write all about the essential fundamentals of SEO in my article How to Use SEO to Skyrocket Your Business Growth on Autopilot.
#5. Show Ample Social Proof.
Social proof is validation of you and your brand by your clients, business partners or colleagues. It establishes your credibility. You might have great marketing materials and strategies, but if you don’t show your potential customers evidence of where your service or product has worked for other people, they won’t be convinced. Social proof includes testimonials, customer reviews, brand associations, partnerships, accreditations or awards that you’ve won. It’s essential that you find a way to show genuine, compelling social proof of your product or services.
#6. Compelling and Valuable Lead Magnets.
A lead magnet is something of high value that you offer for free via your website or social media, in exchange for someone’s contact details. It’s the most effective method to grow your email database with high quality, warm leads. Your lead magnet might be an E-Book, a downloadable checklist or guide, a free video series, or a free training.
Choose a lead magnet that allows you to showcase your expertise in your niche and allows people to experience you and your brand – for free. For examples, you can check out my lead magnet page here.
Lead magnets grow your email database with potential buyers, which then allows you to nurture the relationship with them, build trust and confidence in your brand, and eventually offer your services to them so that they become paying clients. This is hands-down the most effective marketing strategy to build your business.
#7. An Email Database Manager and Follow-Up Campaign.
Once you have a lead magnet that allows you to collect the contact details of your potential buyers, you’ll need a mechanism to store all those contacts somewhere and have a way to communicate with your leads regularly. For that you’ll need an email database manager (or CRM – Customer Relationship Management) such as MailChimp, or AWeber (my favourite), or ConvertKit or InfusionSoft. For a great overview of how CRMs work and why you need one, check out this article What is a CRM by Christopher Sirk.
Did you know that on average, people require around 20 touch points with you and your brand before they’ll consider buying from you? This is why it’s so important that you begin a process of communication with your subscribers so they can get to know you and trust you. Implement a welcome campaign that includes around 2 – 5 welcome emails (spread out over 1 – 2 weeks) that provides your subscribers with information and valuable resources that showcase your expertise and establish you as an authority and leader. This will make them more likely to buy from you when you finally make your offers.
# 8. Offer and Deliver Great Services and Products.
This one goes without saying. In order to be successful in business, you obviously need to deliver services and products of a consistently high standard. Focus on delivering outstanding service and you will get great word of mouth referrals. Statistics show that 85% of small businesses get customers through word of mouth, which means you can spend less time and money on marketing and more time on doing what you do best – serving!
Find a way to package and price your services and products in a way that’s compelling and encourages repeat, long-term business with you. Develop an effective business funnel to move clients through the different offerings you have. Try to move away from charging per session or a time-for-dollar model. It’s essential that you find ways to package and leverage your services so that you can serve more people more effectively.
# 9. Produce Great Content, Consistently.
‘Content’ is the term for any original material you produce to educate or connect with your audience. Content includes blog posts, video trainings, social media posts, podcasts, or downloadable workbooks and checklists to name a few. You need to create content to build your brand awareness, to generate and nurture leads, and ultimately to generate sales.
Good content showcases your expertise, establishes you as an expert in your field, and builds that much-needed trust and confidence in you and your band. You’ll need to find a way to new, original create content regularly in order to establish yourself as a credible brand.
#10. Invest in Systems, Processes and People.
You won’t be able to do everything in your business if you want to do all of the above and focus on growing your business. You’ll need to invest in a good CRM that automatically captures and nurtures your new leads, and you’ll need to automate things such as your calendar bookings, your social media post scheduling and payment procedures so that clients can easily pay you.
It’s key that you learn to work on your business and not in your business in order to grow. As you grow, find good people to outsource your time-consuming activities to so that you can focus on serving your clients and growing your business.
Are you starting or growing your own business? Download your FREE copy of my FEMPRENEUR SUCCESS HANDBOOK to fast-track your business success! This value-packed guide contains everything I wish I knew back when I was starting my own business in 2011. Click here to download it now.
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In service to helping you live your brightest life,
Kate De Jong, Ph.D