I recently had a long conversation with a successful entrepreneur. Laura started a website-based business two-and-one-half years ago. Today, her website has grown in size and income to where she now hires people to help her run the business.
While Laura is not in the book publishing or marketing business, I found three lessons from our conversation that I believe any small business owner can learn from.
Lesson 1: Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
This successful website owner shared with me that she could not just rely on one method to bring the traffic she needs to keep her website successful. Instead, Laura has to approach her customers from many different angles to keep them hooked and returning to her site. She uses a combination of marketing techniques to promote her site including a daily email newsletter, affiliate and shared links with similar websites, and social media efforts.
Laura told me that recently one of her posts on Facebook somehow got reported as spam. Facebook flagged her account and, now, none of her posts can be forwarded by her fans to their friends, greatly limited her reach on Facebook. Laura stated this is just one of the reasons she cannot rely on just one method to reach people.
Lesson 2: Interesting content is king.
The reason Laura’s website is successful is because she provides interesting and useful content that her followers want each and every day. It’s not easy. It takes research and hard work on Laura’s part. However, by knowing what her target audience is looking for and providing them with that information is what has given Laura success.
Lesson 3: To grow, sometimes you have to give up some control.
Laura told me that the hardest part of success was giving up control of her business. She started the business as a one-woman show, but over time, she has had to hire people to help her out. Laura stated that these individuals don’t do things just the way she would, and, sometimes, that is hard to swallow. However, what has helped Laura the most is recognizing her own strengths and keeping these types of tasks for herself, while hiring people to do the things that are not in her strength skill set.
I love talking to successful small business owners. I thoroughly enjoyed my conversation with Laura. We spent quite a bit of time swapping social media techniques and tips and just encouraging each other. I hope that you found something useful from my conversation also.