If you’re feeling alone trying to create a one-person work environment, rest assured there are others like you out there. Out of the 30 million American small business owners, 81% are solopreneurs!
This term includes individuals like yourself, determined to thrive on your own, workwise. Being a solopreneur comes with the privilege of working on your own terms and raking in all the profits. No wonder several professionals are bidding adieu to their corporate careers to give this a shot.
But, if all were rosy, the majority of the world’s population would be running their own business solo.
What does being a solopreneur entail?
Being a solopreneur means handling all aspects, from setting shop to product development to marketing to after-sales service, of your small business on your own.
Naturally, the path to being a successful solopreneur is riddled with challenges like startup costs, utility bills, and, most importantly, marketing expenses. Marketing your solo business is a toughie, but without effective marketing, you’ll fail to generate leads and nail conversions.
Although, here is some good news! In today’s online landscape, digital marketing is both affordable and effective. It is also the best way to generate leads and nurture them.
10 killer ways to market yourself as a solopreneur
If you’re new to being a solopreneur, here are 10 marketing tips involving technology that can help you boost your business.
Tap into email marketing.
Once you’re done creating and segmenting your email list, begin marketing via email. An exceptionally cost-effective marketing medium, email marketing should be your primary go-to when marketing your solo endeavor. This medium provides premium one-on-one space to engage prospects by sending them personalized messages.
Studies show that if leveraged correctly, email marketing offers the best marketing return on investment (MROI). Through this platform, you can generate $36 worth of business for every $1 spent. So, make sure you exploit the potential of email marketing to the fullest. Use it to not only promote your products and services but also to follow up with your customers and take feedback.
You can also consider automated email marketing. Investing in email marketing software puts your marketing campaign on autopilot, thus ensuring that you never miss sending out emails at the right time to the right prospect. You draft impactful and custom content and decide on the email sequence beforehand, and then let email automation take care of the rest.
Create a high-quality mobile-friendly website.
Ideally, you want to bring leads generated through email marketing or other mediums to specific website landing pages. Here, you provide them with more information strapped with tempting offers to edge them closer to conversion.
Needless to say, if you don’t have a user-friendly website, which is also optimized for mobile viewing, it will hurt your business’ image. Viewers will likely find your operation less legit, and you may experience low engagement and conversion rates.
So, invest in a website optimized for both mobile phones and desktops. Hire an SEO expert to help you embed the right keywords in it, so Google and other search engines rank it on the very first page. Trust us when we say this, creating a high-quality website that is easy to peruse comes at a low cost but provides excellent returns.
Leverage social media marketing.
Again, an incredibly affordable and impactful marketing medium is social media. If your solopreneur is more B2C-oriented, create and actively share relevant content on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. It is also a good idea to make a LinkedIn page for corporate orders.
If you operate within a B2B space, not actively posting over LinkedIn is nothing short of a crime. Not only can this tool help you establish your solopreneur as a thought authority, but it also aids in qualified lead generation.
Therefore, create handles on all social and professional media platforms, share deals and discounts over them, launch new products, and distribute freebies to generate leads. Remember, all this comes at a fraction of the cost of traditional marketing methods.
Try video marketing.
Studies reveal that people watch a whopping 18 hours of online video content every week. Clearly, video fares better than reading text. This stat makes it evident that video is one of the most potent forms of content consumption.
Keeping this in mind, etch a video content marketing strategy. Invest in creating your product’s videos and sharing them via email and also on social media. These videos must be brief and immersive. Also, collect testimonials on video from your happy customers and share them on social media.
Remember, videos speak volumes and can explain the salient feature of your offering within a few minutes. So, why wouldn’t you invest in this medium to grab your lead’s attention?
Conduct invitation-only live events.
Whether you announce it on a closed social media group or send a Zoom link to select leads over email, a live event must not be too salesy. Simply put, conduct a virtual event on a topic that adds true value for your prospects.
For example, if you are a developer selling CRM software, invite HR professionals and marketers to a virtual event where you educate them about what CRM software is and how it can help them specifically.
If you’re not a subject matter expert, be sure to invite one and open the virtual floor for Q&A. Don’t blatantly sell your product through an invitation-only live event. Create a market for it first, and then nurture the same leads via different channels. Conducting an invitation-only virtual event can also help with word-of-mouth marketing.
Incentivize old customers for referrals.
An age-old cost-effective marketing strategy is that of getting your happy customers to bring you more leads. Prospects that come via referrals are more trusting of a solopreneur. However, more often than not, your happy customers simply forget to recommend you to people who might need your services.
To combat this situation, we recommend you distribute incentives like cashbacks, product discounts, or extended subscriptions for the same price to your customers. Of course, you’ll be doing this in exchange for a referral. The best channel to share referral incentives is via email marketing, as here, you can customize incentives based on client priority.
Seek inspiration from your competitors.
There’s never any harm in learning from someone who seems to be doing things better than you. Think of a competing solopreneur as a helpful resource rather than a burden. Engage with your competitor as a prospect to see what they are doing right. You can then inspire your marketing strategy in a similar way.
This works the other way around as well. If one of your competitors is not faring well, figure out what they’re doing wrong, and stay miles away from deploying the same strategy. Either way, a competition study is critical if you wish to stay afloat as a solopreneur.
Talk about your journey.
Let your prospects see the kind of pains you took to develop your product or to open your business. Also, showcase how process-driven you are and how stringent about the quality of your offering.
Know that humans innately look for an emotional connection, be it with another human or brand.
So, give them that by telling your brand’s story and how you sought to solve a problem by becoming a solopreneur. Marketing the final product by itself will never be as effective as when you provide prospects more context as to how you got there!
No, we don’t mean hire full-time employees. But, do invest in the freelancer economy. Contractually hire the right people to help you out with whatever tasks you’re struggling with. Whether you want a temporary accountant or coder, or digital marketer, don’t shy away from asking for help.
Perhaps, you are naturally an expert at product development, but not so much when it comes to marketing online. In such as case, a contractual digital marketing expert will help take your offering to the right people at the right time.
Review and recon.
Prospects are fickle. Today they want something, and tomorrow they may want something completely different. Also, new trends keep swarming the market, adding to fickle mindedness of leads. This is precisely why you must keep measuring the success of your ongoing marketing strategy, and any dip you notice must be reviewed immediately.
There can be no set marketing template for a solopreneur for too long. Hence, define your KPIs or key performance indicators, and evaluate how well you’ve been faring in a particular quarter. Be ready to try different marketing approaches if market research shows that what your tried last year is simply not working this year.
Yes, some people think solopreneurs cannot succeed in today’s competitive market scenario. But, this is not true! If you genuinely have a novel product at the right price that you market using the 10 tips listed above, you stand to thrive as a solopreneur.