5 Marketing Challenges Solopreneurs Face
If you’re running your own business as a one-person shop you know the struggles of being a solopreneur.
There are different types of solopreneuers.
There are those that are just starting out and they’re getting things all set and ready to go before bringing on team members whether it’s at an office or shop or if the team is remote.
There are also those that have tried having a team and like it better when it’s just them running the show with partners and vendors.
And there are those in other situations that for whatever reason have themselves running the show.
In each situation there are challenges. Solopreneurs obviously only have so much time and energy to give to the business. And sometimes you can outsource everything or you don’t want to.
When it comes to marketing there are often things solopreneuers want to do, but don’t have the time to do or to learn.
Let’s review some of those marketing challenges and some possible solutions.
Challenge #1. Social Media
Social media can be a challenge for large enterprises with lots of employees and resources. It’s just about always more work than expected to manage social media especially multiple accounts. It’s almost a full-time job to manage each account properly so they can provide a return for the business.
So obviously managing multiple accounts on different social media channels is a crazy proposition for a solopreneur. And it might not be worthwhile to spend energy there while client work needs to be done.
But social media does present a way to market your business so there are some solutions.
You obviously have the option of outsourcing social media to a service that provides it or you could hire a freelancer or contractor to do it. That’s an option for all the solutions in this post.
But for social media the best option is likely to cut your focus to one social media channel. Determine what channel is best for you. It could be Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn depending on your business. Instagram or SnapChat could even be the best options.
Limit yourself to really rock on one channel and it’ll be better than being just okay on five channels.
A great tool to use to automate some social sharing is Buffer.
Challenge #2. Lead Nurturing, Quotes, Etc.
Part of the business process for entrepreneurs especially those that are freelancers working on projects is lead nurturing and doing quotes and the process of bringing on new clients.
It can take up a lot of time. It’s fine if it all goes well, but even then you’re always left wondering if the process could be more efficient.
You don’t want to spend too much time getting new clients on board to the point where you can’t work on the work you need to get done for your current clients.
A first solution to this problem would be to use your website as a salesperson. If you keep getting the same questions over and over and if you’re repeating the same answers to those questions then it makes sense to put the answer right on your website.
This way the prospect is able to get their answer or answers before contacting you and they’re closer to the sale leaving you more time.
You could also change your business so it’s more of a specialized service and not as focused on individual projects. Or you could do it so that at least part of the service you provide is the same for everybody with a little customization.
That can cut down on the amount of lead nurturing and quoting you need to do. And some customers are happier with those options.
Challenge #3. Public Relations & Networking
Public relations can really pay off for businesses. It’s why many enterprises often have a department for PR or they hire a firm to help them take advantage of PR opportunities.
Solopreneurs can benefit from PR just as much, but it’s hard work for a business owner to make it work with just a little amount of time.
PR is worthwhile, but it’s hard to try to do it all. It’s similar to social media. You can’t focus on all the channels. You could focus your efforts on one channel like trying to build relationships with television professionals or reporters from newspapers.
You could do the same with an online effort like attempting to do one guest post on an industry blog each month. Or do one podcast guest session each month. Your weekly effort would be researching and reaching out to 3-5 blogs or podcasts each week.
And for networking it would involve finding one group to join and going full in with your effort. You can become a superstar in one group instead of just someone kind of involved in five groups.
Challenge #4. Conversion Optimization
I’ve been doing some looking into conversion optimization. We, as business owners, can pend so much time focused on getting traffic to our sites, but then the focus needs to also be on making sure the site converts the right visitors.
It’s obviously a challenge for many business owners especially the ones that aren’t versed in coding, development and design. If you try to do it on your own you could do some, but probably not a lot.
There is quite a bit involved including wording tweaks and many other elements that can affect conversion.
The best solution here seems to be to hire a firm to handle the conversion for you. When you outsource this service the company can plug-in and start doing tests on your site. You can be involved in deciding what to test, but let the experts do what they recommend.
Depending on the service you offer there might be an opportunity for some kind of trading of services arrangement, but for me it seems like paying for the service is almost always better. You don’t want to be treated as less than a typical client.
Challenge #5. Blogging & Content
Finally we get to blogging and content.
Part, a big part, of getting traffic to your site is creating and promoting content. We got into this a little bit with social media and creating content for your own site and blog is a challenge.
Some entrepreneurs like doing it, but don’t have the time with all the client work there is. But the rewards are there if you can put in the effort for the long-term.
And that last part is an issue. Some entrepreneurs can blog occasionally or do a few posts initially and then have it taper off over time. And not doing it consistently for the long-term won’t bring any results.
Outsourcing is an option here again. Another option would be to focus on doing what you can and focusing on only one type of content whether that’s videos or blogs or webinars or whatever.
Choose the that you are most efficient at and commit to a realistic schedule. The important thing is that the schedule is consistent whether that’s weekly or monthly or whatever you can realistically manage.
You’re not alone if you’re a solopreneur struggling with marketing challenges. Marketing is often the first thing to go when there is a time crunch. But that’s frustrating because without marketing you won’t get any new clients and that’s what leads to growth.
Hopefully the solutions above can provide some next steps for you to improve your solopreneur business.