In our pursuit of success it’s easy to get some wrong ideas. For example, I’ve heard people say they are not succeeding online because they don’t know the right people.
I really disagree with this idea. While knowing a big name marketer with a big time list can be a good thing, I can assure you it is not necessary to succeed online.
If it were, no one but the connected few would stand a chance.
I’ve also heard some say they don’t know enough to create a product of their own or to succeed online. Nothing in their background has prepared them for success online. There is “too much” to learn.
Join the club!
We are all fellow travelers. We are all seekers. None of us know what an autoresponder or squeeze page or drip follow up system is before coming online.
So if it’s not who you know, and it’s not what you know, then what is the X factor when it comes to succeeding online?
I believe it’s not who you know, or what you know, but rather who knows you.
And this is very good news, because you can control who knows you.
While you might not have a big reputation (yet) or an address book chocked full of big-name folks in your niche (yet) what you do have it much more valuable.
You have the people!
It’s the many, many individuals spending time on the internet who will determine if you will succeed or fail.
They are your hiring committee, and your boss, as well as your customer. It’s them that you need to impress.
And to do that, they have to know you.
- They have to know you so they can be impressed with your expertise.
- They need to know you so they can hear that you want to help them.
- They need to know you so they can begin to like and trust you.
- They need to know you so they can know your heart.
They have to know YOU before they can be a part of your success online.
So who knows you?
Do you have a loyal tribe who are invested in your career online?
If the answer is no, there are ways to fix that beginning today.
Here are four of the best.
There is no better place for people to get to know you than you blog. There is no better way for you to let other’s get to know you than by writing or curating articles that will help them.
Blogging is the perfect platform for attracting and engaging your audience.
When I started out online everything was HTML. If you wanted to publish a webpage you needed to learn the HTML language, write and format the page and then upload it using FTP.
What a hassle!
Then WordPress changed our lives forever. Now, if you can type you can post to your blog.
In some cases, all you need to do is talk to be able to blog!
Blogging works as your home base, the place people can come to hear your voice, read your work and learn how you can help them. They will always know where to find you because you have an online home … your blog!
And they can do that anonymously if they want to. That is a powerful, and important part of the equation in today’s world.
If you don’t have a blog now, by all means establish one. Use WordPress on your own hosting, and use your name for the blog if you can. This is your home base and needs to reflect who you are.
That way, people can get to know you, like you, trust you and buy from you.
Social media sites like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter have virtually exploded over the past several years. According to Nielsen, as of this writing, nearly 4 out of 5 active internet users visit social media sites regularly. No wonder it’s a powerful marketing tool!
You can use social media to draw in new prospective customers, and let your existing audience get to know you and like you.
Regular updates to a blog, Facebook page, Twitter account, or other social media lets your audience know that you’re an actively engaged member of the online community. And if they like what you have to say, they’ll keep listening.
They’ll “like” your business’s Facebook page, or they’ll follow your blog or your YouTube channel. You can develop a reputation with your audience through sites like this, and that’s a powerful thing.
Best of all, the content for these social media postings can come from the articles you write or curate for you blog! Now there’s a win-win.
Write it once – use it many times. I love it!
Using social sites regularly to promote your business creates a give-and-take in information content that feels like a much more substantial relationship than traditional advertising campaigns.
Think of it this way. Who are you more likely to buy from: someone you know a bit and like, or the random stranger that advertises on TV at 2 am?
Most of us will buy from someone we feel at least a little familiar with much more quickly than a random stranger.
Participating in conversations in online communities like forums, or commenting on blog posts, serves many purposes at once for your business.
It’s great market research, keeping you informed on what your niche is talking about and really needs
And, much like social media, it creates a give-and-take between you and your prospective customers that is relational at its core – and that’s what customers really want these days.
It’s much more rewarding for your customer to buy something from a real person that they know and have some connection to, than from an unknown website that may be run by a robot for all they know.
That human connection is vital to your long term success
Your Email List
Speaking of relationships, there may be none more powerful than the relationship between you and your email list.
If all you send is occasional sales messages to your subscribers, you’re missing out on a valuable opportunity with your readers.
You can use your email list as a way to create and maintain a rapport with your readers.
Rather than just asking them for money all the time, give back to your readers with helpful information content over topics they’ll be interested in. Send them interesting articles, reviews and helpful resources. Give them occasional gifts.
Doing this allows them to get to know you and like you. It also creates a pattern of reciprocity – there’s a balance of asking and giving that keeps both you and your readers happy and engaged.
You can also use your email list to engage your customers in actual conversation that gets them involved in your company in a natural way.
Things like surveys, polls, and general “touching in” questions offer your readers a chance to communicate with you directly – a valuable resource that shouldn’t be ignored.
Wait a second – don’t what you know and who you know still matter?!?
The answer to that question is “absolutely.” Yes, what you know and who you know definitely count for something online.
What you know matters. Without genuine knowledge about your niche topic, how will you impress your audience? How will you offer them interesting information that keeps them coming back for more? You absolutely have to know things.
But you don’t have to know what you share from your own experience. You can follow a reporter model and report on what you learn in your research.
Or, if you have first-hand experience, share that.
All that matters is that your readers are helped. Help them and they will help you in return.
And who you know makes a difference. If people with their own large audience are willing to promote you and your product, that will help you get farther, faster. It will expose you to a whole new crowd and can really make a difference in your sales.
But neither of these things matter as much as who knows you.
You need your audience, because without them, who exactly are you going to impress with your stellar knowledge and interesting emails?
And without a method to build and keep an audience’s interest already in place, how much will joint ventures really help you?
If you aren’t ready to develop a relationship with those new people, then the most you can get is a brief spike in sales, which can’t last and can’t sustain your career online.
Lasting connections mean lasting sales, lasting support, and a growing tribe of followers (and friends) to make your online business a successful one.
If you want true success online, it’s all about who knows you.
Because when you know the people who visit your site, and they know you, you develop both a business and friendships too. You develop customers you like, customers you want to help, and can help.
And those are beautiful things indeed!