I’m a huge believer in blogging prior to launching your business. Why? Because done well, you can be growing an audience of your ideal customer, well before you ask them to buy. I did this for a previous startup, and had over 2,000 on my mailing list by the time we actually launched a product.
In this article, I will go through how to do just that.
Building an audience
It is imperative that you start creating an audience of people who may be interested in your product or service once it is available. This helps speed up customer acquisition, and means that you can hit the ground running, so to speak.
The most cost effective way to do that is blogging. However, the downside of blogging is that it takes time to get SEO traction, at least a few months. So, the earlier you start blogging, the better.
You can begin creating your mailing list by looking for people who may be able ot help promote your business after it launches. Look for people on social media, and follow them and engage with them.
Think about people such as;
- Social media influencers
- Newsletter editors
- Industry leaders
Secrecy is for suckers
Yes, this concept can be quite daunting, however why don’t you think about sharing your idea or business plan with the world? This helps in building anticipation for something not yet complete, however as you’ll soon discover, secrecy is for suckers.
I am not suggesting you should upload everything and advertise your plans, however keeping everything in a dark room until launch day is also not an appropriate option. There are many variations in between total transparency and total secrecy, and it needs to obviously be what you are comfortable with.
I take the approach that this helps you in creating an audience now, and an appetite from potential customers and frankly, this isn’t going to hurt.
For example, I am building a guest blogging sites database that has a few key differences from others that offer similar things. So, I am blogging about it now as a way to build an audience for when it launches.
No one cares about your secret business venture. Share it, get feedback, improve it, and then maybe someone will. Unless you’re a high-profile security startup and you’re building futuristic weapons or climate-change–reversal technologies, you’re probably making a mistake. – Jason Brewer
Your ideal customer
Before you begin with any of this, you need to dive deep and understand who it is you are writing for. I’m not talking about a vague description such as ‘Adult men in France who like running’.
What you actually need to create, is a detailed description of your ideal customer, that really digs deep. Some marketers call this a persona or avatar.
You do this process, by asking yourself lots of questions about who these people are, generally. For example, can you say they are mostly men, or mostly women? Are they under 40 or over 60? Do they have education degrees?
Keep going with more questions, such as what TV shows are they most interested in? What can you write that helps them achieve more, or have a better life? How do they communicate with friends; by phone, text, email?
Continue asking yourself as many similar questions as you can, and flesh out a good understanding of who your ideal customer is.
You can start by creating a one page outline, which covers areas such as;
Who are they? (Demographics)
- Any specific gender
- Age range
- Location, if that is an aspect
- Hobbies or interests?
What do they do in their free time?
What problems are they facing?
How can your writing help their work?
The more you have a great grasp of who you are writing articles for, the better your writing will resonate with the audience. Before then, all you are doing is a scattergun approach which won’t speak to your ideal customers in a meaningful way at all.
Understand the true why
Why would your target customer be interested in your business, product or solution? When I say why, I mean the root cause. This is very important to know, because it means you can use messaging that is directed to that.
As an example, let’s you are starting to build a managed IT services business. I would suggest that the true why for your ideal customers isn’t that they want to pay another supplier to fix their network when it breaks. Who wants to do that? What your ideal customers actually want is a time saving, cost effective way to avoid downtime and IT disasters.
So now that you have the why, you write with that in mind. Think about topics that cover avoiding downtime and saving IT budgets, etc. They are what you should be writing about.
There you have it. I trust you now understand why creating an audience through blogging is an important step before you launch your next business or product. Already launched? Not a problem! There’s never a better time than today to start catching up. Good luck!