Friday, June 4, 2010

How to Build a Successful Business with a Small Audience

This is a Copyblogger post on quality of audience versus quantity of audience; more is not better, it's depth and loyalty of audience.

Here's an excerpt from this post. (Hey! You are reading this here? mMke sure you sign up to get your own copy of Copyblogger delivered to your email box! It's worth it. Those guys know their stuff!)

Pragmatic Mom
Type A Parenting for the Modern World
I blog on parenting, education and children's literature and am feeling better that I don't need 5,000,000 pages views a month, as my brother, a marketing guy, suggested before companies with $ will pay attention to me!

How exactly do you make this work?

Instead of playing for numbers, you play for depth. Think knock-out punches instead of a torrent of annoying fly-swatting jabs.

Okay, maybe that’s a bad analogy, you don’t make friends by hitting them in the face.

How about if I just tell you a few ways to deepen your reach?

  • Do less, better. It’s much easier to make an impression when you focus on doing a few key things incredibly well. Become known for helping people by doing something amazing.
  • Create high-value products and services. If your product price range is under $20, you’ll have to move a ton of inventory. But if you focus on valuable, higher-priced products (like awesome consulting or private training) you won’t need as many clients.
  • Make more intimate connections. You can create a deeper connection with someone in a five-minute phone call than you can in five months of twitter conversation. The more you can connect on the phone and in person, the better, and the more likely you’ll create relationships that go beyond the surface level.
  • Build a referral based business. When your focus is on people (not just numbers), more people will want to refer you to their friends and peers. This means you need to offer excellent customer service and you need to always exceed expectations. Also, if you have a service or product that complements someone else’s, it will be a natural fit for them to refer their people to you.
  • Make yourself accessible. So many people create unnecessary distance between themselves and the people they help. They have filters, gate keepers, and barriers to communication. One benefit of staying small is it’s much easier to engage with your audience. Show that you’re someone who really cares and wants to help. The more you do that, the greater depth of connections you will build.

The more you focus on depth, the more you realize that breadth is only relevant to a point. If you become obsessed with growth for its own sake, it can be hard to keep perspective.

Sometimes being small is just fine. Sometimes, in fact, it’s fantastic.

About the Author: Jonathan Mead is a martial artist and self development writer. He just released a guide called The Dojo that helps you get amazing things done before most people finish breakfast.

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