If you are dipping your toes in the shallow waters of your dream online business, one thing you probably don’t have a lot of is time. Setting out into your own business adventure can be daunting and sometimes scarily overwhelming, but you know (and I know) that you can do it. Working from home: living the dream, right?
Working mothers, especially those that are trying to launch their own side hustle or dream business, are generally pressed for time. We fit planning, budgeting, marketing, customer service, administration, production, sales calls, and everything else in between the gaps of looking after kids and managing our homes.
At the beginning of your business, you might be chasing every customer and every dollar. You might be working long hours to service one client or to make one item or to manage all of the extra stuff around the edges of your product.
Getting your online business started can feel like you are on a hamster wheel. You are running so hard doing extra work for each sale, that you have no time to grow your business to a stage where you don’t have to run so hard.
Each new product or service or client connection you introduce you have to work from scratch. You don’t have anything streamlined yet, you don’t have strategies or processes in place to help the dollars to grow.
In the beginning, there are many things you need to do to get you going. But as anyone starting out on this incredible adventure knows, you could always be doing something more.
Working from home: The dream is to not work quite so hard for every dollar.
There’s a saying along the lines of ‘Owning your own business; so, you can work 100 hours a week for yourself not to work 40 hours a week for someone else!’
And I admit, at the start, it can feel like that.
But I can help you to put a stop to that, and help you get off the hamster wheel of dollar-chasing.
I have collected some of my favourite easy ways to help your business take little leaps forward, and each of these just takes a devoted couple of hours.
[click_to_tweet tweet=”These activities (most of which are fun in a geeky-mumpreneur kind of way!) will give instant oomph to your business, helping you to make more passive income and grow your audience.” quote=”These activities (most of which are fun in a geeky-mumpreneur kind of way!) will give instant oomph to your business, helping you to make more passive income and grow your audience.”]
So, after attacking one of these easy activities, you will not just be chasing each dollar to try and get some momentum in your sales and engagement – you will have taken positive steps forward to make it happen.
Sort of the equivalent of popping a few automated and IT hamsters in their own wheels alongside yours, making a little money and a little progress. So you don’t have to run so hard or so long in yours.
And pretty soon you can get off the wheel and truly enjoy and grow your business, and balance it wonderfully with the rest of your life. Because working from home shouldn’t be that hard, and no one wants to do 100 hours a week for years on end.
Set aside a few hours this week to tackle one of the activities below.
15 Super Easy & Quick Things You Can Do to Scale Your Business this Week
Improving your business skills
Get some much-needed online training in:
Book in an online class to get your head around a new skill that you’ve been meaning to learn. Check out Skillshare or Udemy for online courses in everything from watercolour painting and scrapbooking to perfecting the layout photoshoot or finding your way around Google analytics.
You could teach yourself the skills needed to put your eBook together; getting this published can help bring more passive income back into your business. This kind of training is worth every penny and every moment spent on it.
Get your head around a new Social Media platform:
There is always a new social media platform that could help grow your business and engage your audience. You might be guilty of establishing yourself on one platform, such as Facebook, and then kind of sticking with that.
New platforms offer access to more customers. And newer platforms often have more organic reach than the more established ones, so you can get more reach without paying for posts.
It’s usually just a time and confidence thing. Set yourself a few hours to get your head around a new platform that you’ve been meaning to master, such as Pinterest or LinkedIn.
Read blogs on it, learn how people interact on it and most of all, have a play around until you feel like a pro.
Volunteer to a charity organisation:
Volunteering or doing some pro bono work does more than just give you warm fuzzies – it can be great for skill and confidence building, as well as good exposure for your brand.
It can be a good way to reach out to new clients for reviews as well.
Developing your resources
Create some good quality standard reply emails:
You probably have some standard questions that potential clients throw at you when they are enquiring about your services, and find yourself giving the same answers often. Develop a series of standard responses that you can personalise and pop off each time they are needed.
This lets you develop quick responses that are still beautifully crafted and say what you exactly what you want.
For example, you probably send repeated emails your basic services and prices, and you might have frequently asked questions about what clients should do at certain stages of their interaction with you. You can also create templates for a thank-you email, a referral email and a politely worded reminder that your client’s bill is overdue, all with the right wording and your own personal style.
Commission some Good Quality Promotional Photos:
You will always need good quality promotional photos, such as for creating landing pages and email templates.
I cannot state enough how essential it is to have high resolution, beautifully taken, original images of your business day to day. You, your processes, your products, your customers, anything that you think your audience might respond to.
Commission a photo shoot with a professional or just have a really good go yourself with your phone, but use a few hours to compile a stash of pictures to keep any promotions fresh for months to come.
Create a stash of visual templates:
If there are types of media that you deal in regularly, or that you want to get into, you should put together templates for these. Consistency across your brand including images, font, graphics, and colours are great for the growth of your business.
This could include a blog post template, covers for your eBooks, newsletters, podcast episode, online course graphics, infographics, Facebook ads, Instagram templates and so much more.
Increasing your engagement
Develop a Content Plan:
Content marketing is the best way to engage your customers, but it does require a little bit of planning. You can’t just fling content around everywhere and hope some of it sticks.
Content is planned in terms of who you want to engage and where they are on their buying journey when you want to engage them. Content is not spamming or salesy, it means providing interesting and tasty information that your customers can devour (and keep coming back for more).
So, it does help to plan your content for even the next 12 months in advance if you can. Set a few solid hours aside this week to do just that.
Load up your social media:
Once you have developed your content plan and created your content, you need to load it all up. How much time every week do you spend making and publishing posts on social media?
Spend an afternoon or evening this week loading up all of your social media posts onto a schedule ready for publishing – and then you don’t have to think about it again for several months.
Load up posts, videos, images, curated content, resources, etc. into a scheduling tool such as Buffer.
Create an online quiz:
[click_to_tweet tweet=”People love themselves a good quiz. This is one of the highest engaging products you can post on your social media pages.” quote=”People love themselves a good quiz. This is one of the highest engaging products you can post on your social media pages.”]
Great programs for developing quizzes include Typeform and Interact.
Think around your business and what questions your potential audience might be asking themselves right now. Examples include:
- What type of home cook are you?
- What is stopping you from losing weight?
- Find your ideal working from home business
Challenge your audience:
People love a challenge almost as much as they love a quiz (it is hard to compete with the attraction of a quiz, however!)
Put together a short challenge for your audience, such as learning a new skill in 30 days, or doing something every day for that time. The motivational aspect of having you as a coach, encouraging your participants along with small wins and celebrations, makes people feel accountable, and they really like doing this!
You will be surprised by how much people love to get involved in a challenge, even if it’s something easy, fun, or that they could probably do on their own.
Some examples include:
- Create an original Facebook post every day for 30 days
- Teach yourself yoga in 14 days
- Get your website to the first page of Google
- Nine-day detox and cleanse
- Declutter your home in four weeks
If you can help your audience to gain a skill, learn an activity or overcome an obstacle, this could be worked into a challenge you could run.
The most important part of the challenge is your ongoing friendly coaching, helping your audience each day and giving them tips and hacks to make it work.
Build a funnel:
Put together a funnel designed to engage your audience and achieve some sort of business or sales goal. A sales funnel involves you offering a freebie to potential customers usually in return for their email address, which coaxes them through a process of steps of engagement, with one or more opportunities for you to sell your products or services.
You need a freebie that’s desirable and a landing page to receive your engaged participants, plus a few emails/articles etc. to coax people along the funnel, hopefully ending in signing up to your services or buying your products.
Launch the MVP version of your online course:
If you have been humming and hawing (what – it’s a word!) about launching an online course but keep getting put off by not having the time to fully develop it, stop dawdling. This week, just launch the minimum viable product of your course – make a start, get a few people involved and do it!
This starts momentum for your next one and gives you great feedback that you can use moving forward.
Here is a basic checklist of what you need to get started:
- working title for your course
- URL for your landing page
- a rough outline of course content
- bonus freebie related to your course topic, that you can send to interested participants in exchange for their email address
- professional email address
- marketing email delivery platform (such as ConvertKit, ActiveCampaign, or MailChimp)
- a couple of good quality promotional photos on your MVP course landing page or for marketing emails
- link and payment method to reserve a spot for participants
- no more excuses!
Develop a webinar:
Developing a webinar can be a little daunting, especially if you are someone that’s not confident on camera. Use this week to shake off that apprehension and tackle your webinar head on.
If you can teach a skill, you can create a webinar about it; just break it down into the steps and then go through each one.
Create an email course:
I have talked a few times about teaching your customers a skill, an email course is another way you can go. If you can do something that other people would like to learn then you can turn it into some form of training, such an online course through Skillshare, a challenge, a webinar, or in this case an email course. This might be a gentler way to start if you are not a fan of getting your face on camera!
Put together a series of emails which will each teach a step or topic of your course, finishing up with a learned skill or perhaps a product that your participants have created.
Launch a crowdfunded project:
Using platforms like Indiegogo and Kickstarter you can launch a campaign to raise money for your business. These usually include prizes or gifts that you give people who have donated money.
Not just fantastic for making a little money, any crowdfunding well done is sensational for exposure for your business.
Use a few hours this week to launch it properly, however – it helps to have some good quality images of your business, and a decent little video about your who and why to help people connect with you.
No more excuses. Working from home is the dream, but these activities are the key to making some solid headway on that dream. Which one will you try this week?