Initial growth is the single most difficult aspect of online marketing to master (and quite possibly the most important). Often times it can take a website 5 years or more to stimulate any sort of growth, wasting a lot of time and effort.
We can both agree that any business should be looked at as a long term investment, but waiting half a decade is simply too long, especially when there are so many ways to kickstart growth from day one.
Today, I’m going to provide you with a basic blueprint to grow your business that can be repeated over and over again. I’ve outlined this process in 6 easy to steps that will allow you to immediately gain traction within your niche. All you need to do is follow the basic steps and you should see some sort of noticeable growth over time.
This is a surefire strategy for breaking through plateaus and ensuring that your internet marketing business continuous to expand day after day.
Step 1: Define Small Achievable Goals
Having lofty, long term goals is fine. In fact, a solid business plan is expected to have end goals in mind. Japanese companies are notorious for creating a business plan that extends 50 years in advance.
However, in order to reach your end goal and grow your business, you need to break it down into well defined, smaller goals. If you want to get from Point A to Point Z, you need to cover all of the letters in between. These smaller letters are your defined goals that need to be taken care of first in order to ensure success.
Obviously, overall growth is your ultimate goal, but this is entirely too broad.
“I want to grow my business” is not defined.
“I want to double my traffic within 6 months” is more defined and will help you reach your end goal of growing your business.
You now have something specific to focus your efforts on.
Step 2: Creating an Action Plan by Leveraging Your Strengths
Now that you have a small, well defined goal to work towards, how do you plan on achieving it? What steps and measures are you going to take to ensure that your business grows consistently enough to reach this end goal? For this, you need a decisive plan of action.
One method, is to take a look at your business and figure out what your strengths are first.
Every business has certain strengths and weaknesses. Perhaps you currently have 10,000 Facebook followers, but only 1,000 Twitter followers, your obvious strength would be your Facebook page as it will yield the largest gain with the least amount of effort.
Your defined goal is to double your traffic right? By identifying your strength, you will be able to create a plan of action that coincides with the strongest aspect of your business.
If Facebook is your strength because you have 10,000 followers, then an appropriate plan of action would be to use Facebook ads to help drive traffic. This is the proper way to leverage your strength for maximum results.
Step 3: Analytics are Your Best Friend
Now that you’ve developed an action plan, you need to implement so sort of analytics in order to track your progress before you begin.
Facebook uses its own metric for analytics, but you’ll need to properly track all of the traffic that reaches your site through Facebook.
This can be anything from what ads brought the most traffic? What colors did you use in the ads? Were they boosted posts or ads that appear on the side? What pages did this traffic aggregate to? How long did this traffic spend on your site? Did any of this traffic refer others? If so, which pages did they refer? These are just a few that you may want to pay attention to.
Step 4: It’s Time to Test Your Action Plan
By this point you have set a defined goal that will lead to growth, identified your strength, come up with a plan that leverages your strength, and implemented the proper analytics in order to track progress.
Before fully committing to your action plan, you need to test whether this truly is a viable option for achieving your defined goal of doubling your traffic.
Prior to testing, try to approach your business like a scientist. Internet marketers are becoming savvier than ever and are beginning to look at their business from different angles.
The steps that a scientist take prior to testing is known as the scientific method and is as follows;
Ask a question – We’ve already done this; “How do you double your traffic?”
Initial research – We’ve done this as well. We’ve identified your strength as the number of Facebook followers you have and have come up with an action plan based on this strength.
Construct a hypothesis – What do you believe the outcome will be when you test your action plan?
Test your hypothesis – Duh, this is actually following through with your action plan.
Analyze data and form a conclusion – Once you’re done testing, you will have the information you need to form an educated opinion whether this is a viable method for doubling your traffic and growing your business. This will be based on the analytics that you gather.
Once you’ve finished testing, decide whether the results were the same, better, or worse than you expected in your hypothesis? What can you do to improve to ensure better results next time?
Step 5: Optimize and Re-test
Once you’ve identified the areas that you can improve upon, re-test and track your results.
Circle back to your analytics. Let’s say your goal is to double your traffic, and you’re testing your Facebook marketing methods. Through your analytics, you should be able to decipher how much time, effort, and money would it take to achieve your defined goal of doubling your traffic.
Based on your results, is this the most feasible method to focus on? Despite Facebook being an obvious strength for your business, it’s possible that you’re spending entirely too much money for every click to your site that you’ve received, quickly expending your marketing budget.
If that was the case, then it may be best to pursue another method to drive traffic.
If it all works out, and you’re seeing the results that you’ve hypothesized, then this is the method you should continue to use and eventually master.
Step 6: Repeat, Repeat, Repeat
If you’ve reached this step, then your action plan worked out and you now have a viable method to double your traffic, but what happens once you’ve conquered that goal? Obviously, you’re not going to stop there.
Once you’ve accomplished your first defined goal, it’s time to repeat the entire process, beginning again from step 1. Maybe you want to double your traffic again? Perhaps you want to increase your revenue?
Whatever you decide, repeat the steps over and over again until you grow your business into a household name. It takes passion and continued persistence, but with this basic outline, I have no doubt that you’ll succeed. Good luck!
Oh yeah, and feel free to share this with your friends. They may need a few tips to grow their business as well.