I remember starting my first business 6 years ago personal training Acting Skinny clients. I started out “marketing” myself on Craigslist. Yes. Craigslist, ya’ll. It was awful, scary, and I promise thinking back on it, it’s by the grace of God I didn’t pick up some crazy person. Awful awful. Don’t market your business on craigslist. Just don’t. I want you to be safe and alive, and not in the back alley because you “marketed” to some crazy person. Sorry, not sorry. That was for free. 🙂
So in those early days of business owning, I failed a lot, and learned some tricks along the way. I could probably write a book on WHAT NOT TO DO when it comes to your at-home business. Maybe that will be my next book, along with “30 Days of Affirmation”.
I relaunched my company Acting Skinny last fall with a scarf line, and it grew faster than I could keep up with it! I probably should’ve, could’ve hired another worker to help with the 10 plus scarf orders some people were placing, but I braved the holiday season and felt super blessed that people were “buying in”. How in the world did I grow my at-home business so fast?
In less than a year, this stay at home, homeschool mama to 4 kiddos, grew my website from maybe a couple hundred views per month to almost 5k viewers per month (the growth in less than 4 months) while homeschooling AND being a wife to a traveling restauranteur.
(My 4 kiddos at the park this summer!)
So here are my 5 MARKETING SECRETS to grow your at-home business!
- Give a sample of your product to someone for free! I remember just starting out with my scarf line. I gave out many scarves for free or discounted to friends and relatives who would tag me in posts and share Acting Skinny with others. By giving away products, I generated buzz around my products and brand by getting them into the hands of movers and shakers. People who will generate buzz for me! When you’re not “trying to sell”, people want to help you! When you’re giving them samples or free products, and not trying to get them to “sign up to be an ambassador”, people genuinely like helping others. So don’t be afraid to ask them to tag you in a post if they don’t mind (if they like a product)! Even though it seems like you’re giving away money, in the long run, it will help your business if you invest in it a bit in order to expand your networking circle!
- Another way my business grew so fast was I always had on a scarf or a bag of scarves to show a potential client! I wore my scarves with cute outfits showing people what my scarf would look like on them. So if you sell Rodan + Fields, look flawless. And have a sample of a product that you use. If you sell ItWorks, have a product with you just in case someone asks. Always be prepared for that potential client by ALWAYS having some kind of product or business card with you!
- Assess which of your social media posts perform the best. Are you posting at optimal times? Does a certain type of post work best? What types of posts bring in clients? What types of posts create the most engagements (i.e. likes, shares, comments)? Are you using different social media platforms and tailoring your posts according to your specific audience? My Instagram shows more fitness, recipes, and inspirational posts. My Facebook page is highlighted by more of my products and stories behind them. My Pinterest focuses more on being a mompreneur, blogger, and healthy recipe pins! Go follow me to check out my strategies! If I post mompreneur posts on my Instagram, they don’t perform well. And I know that because I assess which posts perform best by “testing” my posts! Do an assessment on your posts, and do MORE of what works, and switch up posts that aren’t performing well! Also post during optimal times. On Instagram, I try to post 2-3 times a day. Once btw 8-10am, one at around 1pm, and one around 8ish (if I remember). It’s not always perfect, but those seem to be my optimal times. Figure out what times work best for you! If you aren’t getting many likes, shares, comments, try switching up the times!
- Market your brand, not your product or service. Who are you? What do you represent? And what is your why behind your brand? Why do you do what you do? I don’t care about your products or what you’re trying to sell me. I care about your why. I’ll choose that single mom who has two kids at home who owns her own cake business. I’ll choose her over another “company” because of what she represents. Her why? Her children who inspire her each and every day. I see that. I understand her brand because she lives it. Strength. Fortitude. Perseverance. I can get a cake from anywhere, but I’ll go back to her because of her brand. And it doesn’t hurt that she makes phenomenal cakes. 🙂 Check out her Facebook page: I Bake Art! She is super talented. (Side bar: Here’s a secret…out of three posts I post daily on Instagram, only one is a product from my shop that I integrate into my brand. So if I’m marketing my “Lunges, Lipgloss, & Jesus” shirt, I’ll workout in the shirt, and come up with some story to go with it. Then post a selfie in my shirt so they can see the product, BUT I never say “BUY ME BUY ME. FOR SALE.” I just integrate my products into my daily routine and brand, and share my personal connection to it. Then my other two posts represent my brand as well.) People want to see who you are when you post on social media. People don’t want to see your products or feel like you’re selling them something. When you share who you are, you reach more people. You will go far by being real, authentic, personable! Tell us your story, your brand. Who you are? Be transparent with your potential customers. So market your brand, not your product or service.
- Create a business page, so that you can “Automate” posts, and “boost” posts when you’re offering sales. OMG! When you create a business page, you can do so much that you can’t do in a private group or on your personal page. I was out of town at a family reunion this weekend, and I boosted a post on Facebook while away, and generated sales while on vacation! You can boost a post on your Facebook page for as little as $5 and generate a ton of sales. You can do the same on Pinterest! It’s amazing, and has driven so much traffic to my website! Don’t know how to create a business page? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’d love to walk you through it! Creating automated posts, saves you so much time because you can create 5-10 posts for the week, and schedule it FOR whenever you want! Wow! That means more time with your family because your social media marketing is already done ahead of time. More time with family is what we want, so go ahead and create that business page, so that you can market your brand on autopilot while going to the park with your kiddos! I love getting alerts that I sold something when I’m out with my family! It’s amazing!
Bonus tip: YOU ARE YOUR BRAND, so wear it well! When you are out and about, exude energy. People are drawn to positive energy. So dress up, put on some make-up. Carry yourself in such a way that people are drawn to you, and want to know what is it that has you walking with a pep in your step. When someone asks you about your amazing energy, that is the just the door you need to tell them about your incredible product, service, or business. You shouldn’t have to say a word about your business, your amazing aura and energy should open the doors to dialogue with potential customers. You are the best marketing secret, so LIVE your brand. Live your business. Part of marketing your brand is carrying yourself in such a way that other people want to buy into whatever you’re selling. So be that inviting light wherever you go!
So those are my marketing secrets, friend! Want to learn more mompreneuring tips, go ahead and follow us on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Or join my online Mompreneuring Class coming soon! Check out the website below to see when the premier Mompreneur class is available! Are you ready to go out and be the incredible at-home business woman you were created to be?! Let’s do it ladies!
Until next time friends,
CEO Acting Skinny and Proverbs 31 Mompreneur