Get Internet Popular, Then Launch Your Business
This subject is special to me because I had it all wrong for years and then I finally corrected myself. I should have caught the hint after my school years of being unpopular (nerd) and not being able to do more during those years as well such as sell more candy in school, or other side work. I have hustled since I was 5 years old and I haven’t stopped since. I have had many people ask me what my current side-hustle was after not seeing me after a couple months because they knew I was very into becoming successful. Launching products or services is not something I started as an adult or even after getting the internet for the first time. Hustling is part of my DNA.
The concept of branding myself didn’t come until around 2008 when I bought this domain. I thought that it would become important down the road and it certainly has. Having a domain like mine is the first step into branding yourself if you are already doing social media. Essentially, you need to become popular so people know you and will buy something from you. Not everyone can be heirs to millions or billions of dollars and be an instant hit, or even break out a sex tape and then dive right into selling perfume in the top brand stores. If you are like me, it takes a lot of work.
Branding yourself first allows you to grow a fanbase and relationships with future loyal customers that want to be associated with your product or service. If people are aware that you are who you are then they don’t need convincing to open their wallets or spend more time with you. It eases the barrier drastically.
Think about the infamous blogger Perez Hilton. I didn’t know him at all until he got popular through content creation and hitting social media. He is now very popular regardless of what you think of him because of the intense branding he did through the internet and even in media interviews. He could launch a product and have an instant base because he became popular first. How large that base is depends on how many fans are truly loyal to him.
What good would it be to decide you were going to open a restaurant and then realize no one knows you and now you will spend thousands of dollars on advertising to make up for it? You will either pay up front with your time or later with your money.
I want to give you some actions that you should in order to start branding yourself correctly. You need these things before you start pushing whatever it is that you want. Keep in mind, even if you don’t have a widget to sell, you still create sway for things like charity, events, and more. It’s not solely about selling something. It’s primarily having an image to leverage.
- Social Media: This is a no brainer, but you need people to fan/follow/subscribe to you that relate to your specialty. My niche is blogging, podcasting, and branding so I connect with like-minded people who either create or consume those topics. It’s pointless to just follow or connect with whoever if they are never going to take an interest in you. You should manage 1-2 platforms such as facebook and Pinterest (these are 2 examples, and you can swap them out with what fits your goals) before expanding, however, you should reserve your pages and profiles for later use. If you are unsure of your future in branding yourself then you should absolutely do this first to test the waters. If you know it’s your future then you can build your website first.
- Website: Get your domain from somewhere like GoDaddy and then find hosting. Your hosting is important and don’t buy your domain from your host. They should be 2 separate entities to avoid disaster. I lost 25 domains when I first started out because I did this. I don’t have hosting to sell you, but I register my domains with GoDaddy and host with Wiredtree. You need to research what works for you. I hear great things about Digital Ocean as well, and Amazon Web Services could be worth it if you are technical enough.
- Platform: Once you have your domain and hosting you need to start developing your website. This could take a while and you need to research what CMS (Content Management System) works well for you. You could also build your own if you are skilled enough. I use WordPress because it’s easy and works for what I am doing. There is also many others such as Drupal, Joomla, and even coding tools like Yeoman and Jekyll. Get it looking awesome and buy or make a killer theme for it. I personally pick from Themeforest, not that you have to.
- Branding: You need a logo, banners, and other graphics that will set you apart from your competition. You can see the steps I have taken to do this here. Skip the business card. With our digital world being what it is we no longer need these barbaric tools to identify us. Think about what you need though. You can see that I brand my social media presence in the same manner across all platforms. It’s consistency that counts, so if you design or hire someone to do it for you, make sure you get it all from the same source if possible. This is a crucial point to the success of your branding efforts.
- Message: Your posts need to carry a message. This should be about your expertise and not about you. You can of course talk about your experience, but you can’t keep selling yourself. Your message needs to be effective in solving a problem, educating, entertaining, and shareable. If it’s not, what do you really have? Keep your message about giving away your expertise and not about how awesome you are, unless you are a model, the President of the United States, or someone that is suppose to be self-centered. This content is what will give you credibility and more.
- Consistency: You met all of these points already, now what? Keep it going, and continue bettering your offerings. Continue to build your social presence and improving your content. You will never be done until you are done.
This post is about getting you to become popular. Think about your goals and finding your niche to become an authority in. You can leverage things like Quora or even blogging on Medium. People need to see you but they need to see you in a light that makes you someone that they want to keep an eye on. That’s not so easy for many people so I have one more piece of advice to help you along the journey. Surround yourself with people that are already popular that can prop you up and even motivate you to do more and to do better. Having folks that are like you, around you, is vital to any good branding strategy.
Once you are somebody on the internet you will find that launching a product, service, or even an app is easier than ever before. You will already have people to sing your praises for you and won’t have to pay to have an over-hyped media campaign to tell people how awesome your Meerkat app is. Instead, your credibility will speak for itself as your fanbase helps you grow organically. This isn’t a bulletproof solution or pattern by any means either. It takes dedication, hustle, and time to build anything substantial.
Have a listen to my podcast episode from “Adam’s Digital World” where I dive into this. Comment also so I can hear your thoughts on branding yourself first. I would love to hear more and if you can contribute to these thoughts as well, it would be fantastic!