Marketing plans for businesses usually start with the assumption that the owner has a healthy lead list and a thriving website or blog. What happens if you don’t meet these commonly assumed standards? Chances are, you’re going to end up reading through a list of tips that don’t apply to your brand.
We want to shift the perspective for new business owners just like you. Today we are going to look at five tips you can start using today to grow your audience pre-launch. The topics include:
- Creating customer personas
- Developing a “Coming Soon” page
- Writing guest posts and working with influencers
- Engaging with consumers on social media
Let’s dive in!
Identify Your Target Audience
Before you can build your audience, you have to understand who you’re targeting. You have to deliver marketing material and products to consumers that understand the problem you hope to solve, and are currently looking for a solution to the problem, as mentioned earlier.
Let’s say you plan on starting an eCommerce storefront that sells computer parts. Do you think you would target consumers who generally don’t use computers, and instead rely solely on their smart device? The answer is no. You want to find people that have an interest in building computers and are looking for an affordable, high-quality parts vendor.
There are multiple ways you can create customer personas that represent your target audience. In essence, a customer persona sheet is a chart that identifies the goals, pain points, and personality traits of your target audience. Below is an example of a customer sheet for a technology-themed business.
You can find information out about your audience by searching social media groups within your niche. Read the posts and comments from the general audience, and you’ll learn more about what they expect from products or services in your industry.
Additionally, you can add Google Analytics to WordPress and view the traffic of your “coming soon” page and learn more about your target audience using on-site figures. We are going to dive into coming soon pages and how they can help grow your audience next.
Create a Coming Soon Page
A coming soon page is a great way to grow your audience before your site officially launches. Business owners and bloggers using these types of early access pages to inform curious customers, grow their lead list and improve their SEO ranking pre-launch.
The sooner your site is online and indexed, even if it’s just a coming soon page, the better chance you have of getting recognized and rising in rank.
Additionally, you can use this opportunity to ask consumers that land on your page to sign up for your email list for future updates. When you use this tactic to grow your business, you’ll see that most industries have a built-in audience, you have to create products that appeal to the correct audience.
Luckily, creating a coming soon page is simple when you use a WordPress plugin like SeedProd. SeedProd is known as one of the best tools for small business owners who want to grow their audience pre-launch.
You can create customized pages with information your target audience would find relevant, such as launch day and initial products. Here’s a sample coming soon page that is bound to draw in a broad audience before launch day.
Engage with Users on Social Media
If you want to build a large following, you have to show the community that you’re willing to talk. One of the best ways to personally reach out to users pre-launch is with your social media channels. At this time, you probably don’t have a large following.
However, the more you are willing to post thoughtful discussion topics, polls, and respond to consumers that ask questions, the more likely people will engage with your brand once you go live.
You should consider hosting a giveaway or caption contest if you want to get people involved early in the development cycle. There’s nothing like a prize to get people engaged with your business.
There are plenty of good prizes to give away, but think carefully about your decision before you launch your first contest. Prizes like Amazon gift cards are likely to cause a surge in your traffic and followers, which is excellent, but this will not result in long-term engagement. People will likely enter your contest because they are interested in free Amazon cash, not your product or service.
If you want to build your audience early with a contest, offer something that will help your target audience. Let’s revisit the example we used earlier. The owner of a computer parts website would likely create a contest where the winner gets a new graphics card. The number of participants will drop, but the leads who entered are genuinely interested in what you’re offering.
Work with Influencers
Influencers are internet personalities that are wildly popular on channels like YouTube or Instagram, as well as private blogs. Working with these individuals is a great way to expose your brand to a broad audience before your site goes live.
There are two ways to work with influencers this early in development. First, you could offer to write guest posts for blogs within your niche. In your author bio, you can include a link to your coming soon page and potential home page.
Finding partners willing to accept your guest posts is no easy feat. Most publications and online influencers have strict rules and regulations to follow, especially as it pertains to the type of content you’re submitting. Make sure that you’re always offering content that provides valuable information to readers, and establishes you as an authority in your industry.
You could also work with YouTube or Instagram influencers by sponsoring one of their videos. Allow the internet personalities to mention your business, what you hope to solve, and your website. Consumers viewing this content will see your site, and end up on your home page.
There are plenty of ways to grow your audience before you launch your website. The most important lesson you should take away from this piece is your target audience is responsible for the success of your business. You have to work hard to change their lives positively and solve a problem that no one else has adequately addressed.
As your business grows, you’ll likely create new products or features. As long as you are keeping an eye on your target audience through engagement and analytic examination, you’ll have no problems growing your business well beyond the day your site goes live.