Where I Am
I learned something critical this past month about really uniting the community around you to achieve your goals. You have to know where you are in your current effort toward your goal and be willing to communicate what you are not. Right now my business goals are centered around growing my Social HubSite brand. Something I, along with my team, have put countless hours in and have tweaked for almost 3 years now. Just to fill you in, Social HubSite offers turnkey social website platforms that solve specific problems and fulfills specific opportunities that exist today without having to be a technical geek to run them. Our clients are our resellers and end users are the people/companies that have Social HubSites as a result of our resellers. The challenge in this type of business model is scaling it without totally relying on connections inside of your existing network. My goal is to see it continue to grow exponentially.
The Initial Frustration
Last month (January 2013) I started to strategize how we are going to make Social HubSite grow exponentially. In the past, I had built the initial client base with direct relationships. Even though Social HubSite didn’t grow by leaps and bounds during that time, I found a great value in learning more about what problems it solves and how to improve it. That’s what got it to where it is today. The question still remained, “How do you grow it exponentially?”. For years I’ve heard stories of businesses literally taking off overnight. I researched and researched and never could piece together that hidden gem with the answer. I’ve built a company off of helping businesses grow using the web, but for some reason had trouble piecing everything together for this particular concept. I think we all face this when we are dug so deep in what we are doing. Frustrating right?
The Change In Position
So what I decided to do is focus almost 100% of our efforts on attracting the right people (i.e. clients, media outlets, etc.) through a community that already has an established relationship with them. In our case, this is influential bloggers in the internet marketing space, websites that list new web app start-ups, relevant online marketing forums, etc. In just the past 2 weeks of doing this we have seen a huge jump in activity. We’ve added over 29 new Social HubSite clients and are continuing to gain traction. We posted our free trial offer on the Warrior Forum (online marketing forum) and, in just one day’s time, attracted over 21 new sign ups.
The key to this success seemed to come directly from our bold decision to focus purely on building our system for the reseller. Before we had always positioned it for the end user. In our case, resellers are people who are looking to build their business online by setting up Social HubSites for their clients. Just this one move made it very clear to find the places online to post the information about our trial. Without knowing our position to our client and end user, we might have been stuck with a message that applied to anyone, which is NOT a good thing. I’ve learned if you are not saying no, you are probably going to spin your wheels trying to find someone to say yes.
The other strategy that is working really well is labeling the brand as a “start-up”. It’s amazing how many marketing and PR opportunities open up, just by labeling your company as a start up, even if you’ve been in business for several years. I think most companies are afraid to label themselves as a start up because of the risk in the name, however the marketing and PR opportunities far exceed that risk. I’ve learned just by adding that little phrase “We are a start-up” into our outreach communications, people seem to want to help or try what you have. Some won’t, but there is no time worth worrying about them.
Accept your current position and share that with your community. Say no. Say you’re small. Say you’re just starting out. Say you need help. Sharing these things will open up doors that you never thought even existed.