When I first launched this blog, almost three years ago, it was as sort of a catch-all for my thoughts. A platform where I could share what I had learned about becoming location independent.
This was all well and good, because in order to do that, I had to learn to build a platform from scratch.
And write. A lot.
But I struggled getting much traction with it because I wasn’t sure yet where I was going with any of it.
Once I nailed down exactly what was it I wanted to focus on (Location Independence) and its #1 obstacle (making an income online), it was easier to diagram out how to actually help others get over that hurdle.
Enter the business plan.
Know Your “Why”
What is it that you want from your business? Come on… it’s OK to admit it. Better yet, go ahead and state it as a goal. Say it with me:
I will develop an online income that allows me to live my chosen lifestyle.
There. Doesn’t it feel better?
Write down what is it your want your business to accomplish. Set goals down in terms of audience size and income.
Figure out a set amount that you’d like to earn a month, a week, or a day. No matter how ridiculously unattainable it seems.
Writing out a specific goal will help you lock down to a firm objective and will be the first step towards achieving that goal.
We all work because there are wants and needs in our life that require money to pay for them. While I agree that the best things in life are free, it is also true that everything else requires cash.
You should not be self-conscious about making your money online, as long as you provide a product or service that serves a need and solves a problem.
It’s never right to deceive or “trick” someone into giving you money. It is very ethical, however, to provide an excellent solution to someone’s problem or meet a need, in exchange for payment.
Which leads us to the next point.
Know Your “What”
Alright, so you know what you want from your business. “What” will you offer in exchange to your customer/audience in order to achieve that goal?
Figuring out “what” to offer is sometimes one of the hardest things to hone in. Usually, this happens because we ask the wrong question. Instead, of asking what you can offer, ask yourself:
“What” problem or need am I solving for my audience?
Remember, a business is as much about your customer as much as it is about your audience. And it’s funny because the more effort you put into pleasing them, the more they rave about you to others, thereby increasing business!
Define the problem, come up with a solution.
As a side note, let me stress that there’s a reason why there are “Dummies” books. Don’t think you have to produce anything at a PhD level to be successful. Not everybody is familiar with with all given subjects (or they wouldn’t have a problem in the first place).
Go above and beyond. WOW them, and provide your solution in a format that your audience enjoys, understands, and can connect with. Whether it’s through audio, video, through the blog, or in a forum, deliver the solution and exceed expectations.
The “how” is easy enough to figure out. Mostly because somebody else has already figured it out for you. No need to reinvent the wheel.
As part of scouting the business landscape, make it a point to find and study those who provide solutions to the same needs you’re trying to address. See what they do, and figure out what they lack.
How can you package the solution better? What can you do to stand out?
In other words, set out deliberately to Be Awesome.
As for the “how” part, here are some of the ways you can communicate your solution(s) and make a profit.
I’ve left this one for last, because this is the one I want to leave freshest in your mind.
It is said when everyone is a potential customer, then nobody is. Double that down for blogging, which is a highly personal affair (unless you want a corporate-style blog devoid of personality… and no, you don’t want that AT ALL).
This is going to sound a little strange, but in order for you to connect with your audience, you need to write for one person only. I liken it to a one-on-one private conversation that lots of people happen to be dropping in to listen to.
It is up to you to write for this one person, or ideal “avatar”. Draw up in your mind who your ideal customer is.
What is your ideal avatar like? What do they like and dislike? What is their goal in life? What do they seek to accomplish? What’s your avatar’s name (yes, give him/her a name… make this a real person in your mind as best you can)?
Once you have this avatar fleshed out, communicate with him/her. Write as if he/she were reading every post you wrote, watching every video you produce, every podcast you record.
This will effectively help you find your voice, taking the “bland” out of it.
Well. . .
. . . go get’em!
Draw up your business plan, today. Even if it’s just a draft, take action now.
Sign-up for my e-mail list and get access to the Location Independence Kit Extras (LIKE) ToolBox.
There you will find a One Page Business Plan template (.PDF Format), a worksheet to help you Find Your Ideal Avatar, plus a host of other resources.
If you don’t want access to the Location Independence Kit Extras (LIKE) ToolBox and other Subscriber-Only resources, you can still take a look at the One Page Business Plan template just by liking UnwireMe’s Facebook page below:
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“A journey of a thousand miles begin with a single step.”