Building your business platform

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Building your business platform

  1. 1. March 11 & 12, 2013 Julie KittredgeBusiness Services Advisor jkittredge@ahml.info
  2. 2. What is a Platform? It’s your stage. It’s the thing you have to stand on to be heard. It’s built of people. Contacts. Connections. Followers. It’s about building relationships. It’s about establishing yourself as an expert. It’s about using various tools to reach those who are interested in what you have to offer. Could be a message, a service, or a product.
  3. 3. Why do I need a Platform? Develops your “voice,” your platform will share your personality. This is part of your brand. Gives you an opportunity to influence people. It’s what gives you the authority to communicate to and serve your followers. Helps establish a relationship with your tribe based on trust. When they know you and like you they will want to follow you. Gives you visibility. Establishes you as an expert in your field.
  4. 4. Elements of your Platform Website Blog Social Media  Facebook  Twitter  LinkedIn  Pinterest  Etsy e-Newsletter Public Speaking/Teaching
  5. 5. Where Do I Begin? Decide what would best serve your business. A website or blog is a good place to start so you have a home base to refer people to. Add the different elements gradually. Each tool works great alone, and even greater together. Use Social Media management tools to help.
  6. 6. Website This is where you house the core of your business. The branding/personality is a reflection of who you are as a business and perhaps who you serve. Contact info will be easily found here. Information links. What do you offer? Categories of services. Fee structure. Perhaps a storefront. All of the links to your social media will be found here. This is home base.
  7. 7. Blog Wordpress and Blogger are both free and popular This is where you can share more of your personality and develop your “voice.” Content might include industry tips, opinions, links to resources and info that would be valuable to your customers. Insight into your processes. How-to’s. Top 10 lists. Content will be relatable, reflect your personality & branding, authentic, transparent, and professional. Frequency should be regular or people will stop following your posts. No less than 2x/week.
  8. 8. Facebook Viral Marketing. This is where your friends are and their friends are. Best word of mouth marketing ever. Frequency should be between once a day or 3-5 posts/week Build relationships by authentically liking and commenting on other’s posts People respond to pictures. Share great links, coupon codes to your favorite resources. Quick tips. People love when you’re not all about self promotion.
  9. 9. Twitter Called micro-blogging. Short snippits of information and links. Audience is global. Another opportunity to reach an audience with expert advice and resources. Frequency might be several times a day. Content might include a link to an inspiring article, a blog post, a witty comment regarding a current event.
  10. 10. Linked In Professional networking. This is a resource of connections, and their connections. Suggestions of who you might know based on who you’re linked to. You can post updates here just like facebook or twitter. Make sure your profile is complete. At the minimum, get connected with the people you know who are on linked in as you never know what the opportunities will be that come your way as a result.
  11. 11. Pinterest This is a public visual bookmarking resource Boards can be used for reference for your clients You can create a board that links back to your own work Highlight articles, looks, or a passion Use this to inspire and teach your followers Continued reflection of your personality/brand All of these point back people getting to know you, following you as a resource, and visibility
  12. 12. Etsy Creative Storefront Handmade marketplace, vintage, & supplies Personality is shown through your work Well crafted items and sales give exposure Can be linked to Pinterest for additional exposure and traffic
  13. 13. E-Newsletter Constant Contact & Mailchimp are popular People have to opt-in to get on this list so you know you’re reaching those who want to hear what you have to say. Content is less frequent. Maybe once a month, quarterly, or as needed. Be brief and succient. Your followers don’t have time to read long articles. Save those for the blog. Content might include expert tips, new resources, highlights of one or two services. Think News not Spam. Speak to your audience. Make the content valuable.
  14. 14. Public Speaking Get out there and teach what you know Offer classes & workshops Target your audience Establishes you as an expert You gain visiblity. Your personality shines.
  15. 15. Link them up Choose one or two to start Gradually add platforms to increase your visibility Drive traffic to your website, blog, facebook, etc. Help people find you and create a following built on trust and expertise. Be generous in sharing what you know, not just what you sell. All of these points back to you being the expert in your field. Builds your relationships. Creates a following by becoming a trusted resource for what your people need.

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