The start of my online business journey began with a travel blog. I eventually turned it into a passive income (which was awesome!), but it took me awhile to get there. I made quite a few mistakes along the way, which I’m okay with now since I learned from them. But at the time I would have given my left arm for the advice I will share with you in this article (and website). I could have saved myself years of time if I had gone about my blog promotion the right way.
The #1 Thing I Did Wrong Was…
Obsess over numbers. I would be constantly checking my Facebook page, Twitter feed and Google Analytics. Refreshing after I posted something to see how many people liked it or shared it. Almost every client I’ve ever consulted with is doing the same thing. It kills our time an energy.
Yes, numbers are a measure of your businesses success and reach, but only if you’re focusing on the right numbers. We tend to care too much about how we look rather than what is going on behind the scenes. For example, you might be more concerned about how your website looks rather than how good your product or writing is (I’ve been there, and I get it). But I’ve been able to shift my vision towards focusing on more quality over quantity.
So let’s drop the popularity content and focus on a way to reach your readers or potential clients!
Back when social media first blew up, you would generally know that a person with thousands of Twitter followers was a pro in their niche. Not long after this services for buying followers and likes started to pop up all over the internet. Most social media platforms have algorithms in place to catch people who are scamming the system, but it takes time and they can’t catch everyone. I tried buying followers in Instagram to see what all the fuss was about, you can check out that article if you’re wondering, does buying Instagram followers work.
Don’t let high numbers fool you. It’s so easy and cheap to buy followers and most of the time you can quickly figure out if an account has purchased followers or likes. When you buy followers the accounts are not real people. Thus, these followers don’t interact with your account or add any value to your brand, other than being ‘for show’.
For example, I was looking into getting some ‘shout outs’ on Instagram accounts with 20k or more followers to get my brand noticed. When I checked out these accounts with 20k followers that had advertised ‘shout outs’, I found out they did not have a lot of real followers. I looked at the last 4 or more pictures they posted and they images only had 50 likes. They were nice images with good hashtags. If the user actually had 20k people following them (of real, active users) then this number should have been A LOT higher.
Focusing your time and energy on the right social media numbers is detrimental to your business and I’ll show you how…
Instead of chasing numbers and popularity, it’s time to chase potential readers or clients. It’s better to have 5 followers or email subscribers that are actually interested in your business rather than 500 that won’t visit your website or buy your products. Focus on building an engaged following – I guarantee you it will be more profitable and save you tons of more time than the quick gimmicks and tricks to getting higher numbers.
Reaching your potential audience:
- Get clear on your niche & audience – For years I wanted to ‘do it all’. My blogs and products would be far too broad and I wouldn’t make as much money as I have with more focused niches. I also learned how to think outside the box in terms of reaching my audience. For example, my niche is helping wellness professionals. Most wellness professionals are into nutrition and fitness as well. I can break it down even further from there and target yoga lovers and holistic nutrition. (Searching for hashtags and connecting with users who are interested in these things in a great way for me to ‘reach my potential audience’).
- Offer helpful or interesting content – Another way quality over quantity comes in handy. I used to write up any useless article, or post any old picture because I thought I had to publish all the time. But I slowly learned that I would have more of a dedicated following (people more willing to buy my products or read my blogs) if the content I offered both on my site and social media provided them with some sort of benefit.
- Offer and incentive for your email list or social media – I offer people a 30 minute free online business consultation for one of my email lists, I also offer free eBooks that are a few pages long. Both of these contain content my readers can’t get anywhere else!
- Boost your traffic quicker by investing money – Sometimes we need a bit of help building up our following and traffic. I like to keep my portfolio of social and Google based traffic mixed. I’m active on social media and I sometimes use ads to boost a specific article. I also guest post on blogs, use The Hoth to guest post and build links and I’ve learned how to find profitable keywords that will drive traffic from Google.
This is all a simple concept to grasp, but we tend to get off track by having numbers envy. It’s natural that our ego wants our business to ‘look’ good. But keep focused and MAKE your business good rather than just looking good! Having followers and subscribers that are actually interested in your content is a zillion times more valuable than 1000 people who aren’t engaged with you at all.