Here’s my simple 5-step plan for anyone that is having trouble knowing where to start in online business.
Sometimes, aspiring entrepreneurs know they want to create an online income but they don’t know what niche to enter, what products to sell, and how to go about testing to see if their business idea has validity.
Consider this your view from 10,000 feet – meaning, you will have to add some meat (further details) to this skeleton but it should help you get going toward the goal of creating a profitable online business.
Here are the steps that will get you started:
1. Inventory your …
- knowledge (education)
- things other people would say you do “very well”
2. From the items at the top of your new inventory list, identify (through online research and observation) a group of folks that are …
- rabid about the topic
- asking questions about the topic in forums
- willing to spend money on it
- congregating in identifiable places
- prone to joining communities on the subject
3. Hang out with this crowd at the forums, blogs, popular web sites, etc for a couple of weeks specifically looking for …
- ways to heighten their enjoyment of the niche
- gaps or holes in the niche training and education available online
- logical products that the crowd would consume that aren’t readily available
- sub-niches that don’t seem to be addressed well online but that people mention in their conversations
- ways to bring the crowd together as a community
- sources of niche news, entertainment, events, best products and leader profiles
- opportunities that may exist to bring buyers and sellers in the niche together
4. Evaluate the results of what you’ve found in #3 above by doing this to validate (confirm) that there are indeed prospects waiting for you …
- check Nextmark for lists of fans in the niche (are there more than 3?) ( http://lists.nextmark.com/ )
- is there a “dummies” book or two on the subject or idea you have
- use your favorite keyword tool – you want to find lots of long tail keywords (with roughly 100 phrase match searches/month or more)
- visit Amazon and eBay and search on your most popular keywords to see what books, magazines, products, and services are for sale in the niche – the more the better
5. Develop a short pdf “freebie” report (2-5 pp) that you give away, hopefully in exchange for a new friend (and her email address) in the niche. The subject of the report is something like “How I Discovered The Secret to ___________” or “12 Amazing New Ways to Become an Expert at __________.” The idea is to both test the water for interest in your new product, membership site, ebook, and the niche etc, … but also … to begin …
- developing your credibility as a niche expert
- building the early stages of a niche email list
- identifying targeted prospects for sales, testimonials, referrals, and feedback on your new business
Extra Credit. If you really want to validate your idea quickly, set up a simple squeeze page online, use the freebie from #5 as the carrot, then drive some very targeted long-tail PPC traffic to it. If you don’t get much interest, refine things until you do or try a different product, ebook, member site, etc. If you have sufficiently tried several ways to monetize the niche and have still found no success (which is pretty doubtful), you ought to shift gears toward one of the other areas of interest you identified in #2 above.
The point of all this, of course, is to survey the field online to test market demand and to test the water on a small, quick, inexpensive, easy scale before diving in head first to create a full-blown product or business. “Ramping up” after you have a proven niche and something to sell doesn’t mean going from this initial test to 100% full-blown business set up. It means that you grow your business one step at a time, constantly testing, tracking, and tweaking all your business variables in order to optimize your …
- lead generation system
- new prospect funnel
- traffic conversions
- new products/offerings
- backend sales
- partner/affiliate system
- customer nurturing and management
For anyone new to Internet marketing: If you don’t recognize some or all of the terms used here, search this web site and you should find answers. Another place to search is the Warrior Forum. Another better approach is to find an experienced mentor willing to help you.
If this plan seems overwhelming, focus on tackling and accomplishing just one step at a time. If you have already bought into the notion that creating a profitable online business is “push button” easy – well, let me clear that up for you – it’s not. I would be very surprised if you searched the Warrior Forum full time for a month and found even one true profitable business that was created with no work or the ease of a fully automatic business handed to you.
To your online business success,