So you’re just starting off your new business or have a hobby you want to share beyond your friends and close family. Or your having a go at being an entrepreneur and want to get yourself out there. Maybe you sell cupcakes, fix up gardens, or sell your art and crafts. Only problem is not too many people know about you or what you do.
So how do you do it? We’ve listed below 20 ways to get your business or hobby known locally and discovered online (and on Google too) to get you started. Remember that not all of these list items will apply to you. Pick and choose what works best for you, but whatever you do, just get yourself out there! If you’re part of a rural or country town, take note especially of all the local ideas to get you started – small towns have a saying that ‘everyone knows everyone‘.
20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby
Get known locally
Starting off our list of 20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby is:
1. Get friends and family to give recommendations
After all, the best way to get more people interested in your business or side hobby is to get it from someone who’s already shopped or worked with you.
2. Get on local radio or local newspaper
While you’re listening to the radio in your car, or reading the newspaper, and especially in small towns or country places, this is a great way for people to learn about you.
3. Get into local business and community groups
There are hundreds of these groups around, especially on Facebook. Try searching for things like ‘local business groups’ or ‘local business networks’ and see what comes up. If you’re in the Wheatbelt, check out the Wheatbelt Business Network and if you’re in the Perth Metro area, check out the Perth Business Network. For everyone else, search for the business network of your town.
4. Attend local events (and setup a stall)
Still the best ways to get known is to be physically present. This way you can describe your hobby or work like no one else can. Lookup local events near you or in your city/town and attend them.
You can attend as a community member, or you can engage further by setting up a stall at the event. You could share information, free samples, free demos, or even sell or demonstrate your work to event attendees. You might even get featured in local news by being a stallholder and you will get included on the event’s website or advertisements as part of the stalls present. Be sure to have the necessary permissions and permits to do so – talk to your local council or the event organiser to learn what you need and apply to attend.
5. Host an event
Feeling confident? This is a great idea to get people to learn all about you.
They’ll be the ones that speak for you when someone else is interested in what you have to offer, and can review or post about you either positively or speak negatively about you online.
20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby
Build your network further
While getting known locally is great, whether you plan to stay local or grow as big as you can – whatever you choose, it’s important to have a presence online. Why? Everyone searches for you or your business online. Same thing you do for others. Make Google your friend.
7. Create social media accounts
You can either use your personal accounts, or make an account or profile for your hobby or your business. Starting with Facebook, it’s free to setup a business or hobby page for your work. This nifty guide tells you how to do it in just 7 easy steps. Need help? Contact us – we can help you setup your page for free.
8. Connect and share with others online
Invite friends to like your Facebook business/hobby page, follow you, and share your content. Have a conversation with your followers and tell them about what you can offer. If they’re interested, they can message you direct and continue the conversation.
9. Ask others to post about your or recommend you online
Word of mouth remains one of the best ways to get new customers or visitors. And when you get a recommendation, everyone can see what it’s like to do business or talk to you.
10. Send out emails and newsletters
You can send updates to people who are interested about what you have to offer with an email list. You can also send special offers and details on events and places you’ll be. You’ll need to ask for some email addresses – either in person, through private messages, or from a signup form on your website (if you have one – if you don’t, read on).
Mailchimp offers a great way to get started – sending emails are easy, and it’s free to do so if you have less than 2,000 different people to send your emails to (which for most startups and hobbyists will last plenty of time).
20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby
Expand your online presence
Now that you have local connections, and have been seen online, it’s time for a central place to send your visitors and customers for everything about you. The best way to do this is with a website.
Especially in 2021, and since COVID-19 changed the world, more people are shopping and going online than ever before. What’s the first app you open on your phone or computer when you want to find another restaurant, go shopping, or find something new? Chances are, it’s Google. Your search usually brings up a few reviews or photos, and a lot of links – many of which are to websites. The website you’re looking for usually has photos and videos, contact information, details about what you want, and an entire collection of more pages to find what you need.
All the big, small, and growing businesses or hobbyists have websites, as a website helps you get reached by millions. It’s also not limited to the rules of social media platforms and you can have whatever features you want – plus you can get it designed to what suits you. You want bright pink? You can have bright pink!
With a website, there are huge possibilities. Fact – you’re reading this article on our website right now. So you know it already works. If you want to know more about us, you can visit our of our other pages from the menu at the top of the screen. We can include what we want and make our site look how we need it. There’s so much you can do with a website. And best of all, when people want to know how to find you, where to send people interested, and where can local journalists link to – you can give them your link to your website. A professional, custom website, just for you.
11. Get a website
A website gives you a central place to share content, add your information, sell products, write a blog, and more – it’s all of the reasons stated above (and we can build you one).
12. Link all of your social media accounts to your website (and vice versa)
Help people connect with you by ensuring your social media pages and profiles are on your website. Make sure your website is linked and included on your social media accounts.
13. Post all of your details, products, services (and plenty of pictures) – on your website.
Exactly how it sounds. Be sure to include pictures as a picture tells a thousand words and quickly shows what you have to offer much better than paragraphs of words can.
20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby
Moving forward with your website
Now that you’ve got a website, local connections, and maybe even a few news pieces on your craft or business, you can send more people to your website. And how do you do that?
14. Keep sending people you know and don’t know to your website
Tell everyone to visit it. Post about it on social media, and show everyone all you have to offer.
15. Get professional search ranking services
These usually fall under a technical name called SEO (which stands for Search Engine Optimisation). It basically involves making your website, social media accounts, and everything online for you to show closer to to the top (or at the top of the first page) of Google and other search engine results.
If you haven’t got thousands to invest, or want to start of with a smaller and straightforward approach (like most startup businesses, hobbyists, and similar) get in touch with us. We offer a straightforward simple service to position your website and your social media accounts, to get more attention and rank up to the 1st page on Google. Interested? It starts at only A$99 Contact us when you’re ready.
16. Add online shopping features to your website
Do you want people to buy your services or your craft from you direct? Will you offer delivery, pick-up, or let your visitors download stuff straight to their computer? Whatever you have, however you want to sell it, we offer a solution for that too. If you want to sell direct from your website, we can add shopping and payment functionality to your website easily. Want to know more? – press here. Or ready to get started? Contact us.
Go even further
By now you’ll be talking to reporters left, right, and center and signing autographs as you go to do your fruit and veg shopping (ok, well maybe not quite like this). But you’ll be working your way up there. To end out list of 20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby, you can go further with your business or your hobby with the following:
17. Go for national or major news companies and get an interview or some air time
Chances are if you turn enough heads they’ll be the ones coming to you. Otherwise, get in touch and see what you can arrange.
18. Setup manufacturing with suppliers (or hire some more people)
If your raft or service hits big and you need to ramp up manufacturing, then you’ll want to make sure you work with a supplier or manufacturer that can do what you need. Not quite that big or not for you? Hire some more people to help you out. If you’re making a handmade craft, keep it original and have it made with care – with a human touch.
19. Collaborate with others like you
Turn competitors into even greater networks. Collaborate and share with other businesses or hobbyists that offer similar work or are in the same industry to cross-promote each other’s products or work. Some even strike deals with commissions, free advertising, free demos, and more. While business does have competition to be the best, it’s important to network and maintain business relationships along the way.
20. Re-read everything on this article.
It’s important and you can make sure you complete all of the items by bookmarking this page and reading it again later. This list of 20 Ways to Grow Your Business or Hobby is something you should keep referring back to until you’ve achieved every item that you can.
Get started with growing your business or hobby
All great businesses have a website AND social media accounts. Even Apple, though some accounts (like this one) have no posts, they still have millions of followers. For everyone else though, posting and networking is important. So get your business or hobby into the hands and minds of many, starting with the below:
Get started now:
- Create your business or hobby Facebook page (about 10 minutes)
- Create your Twitter, Instagram, and other social media accounts (look what everyone around you is on)
- Get a website built for you that’s fast and looks amazing
- Learn more about digital marketing from the Small Business Government website and check out their Small Business Skills Workshops (for a range of topics) here.
- Post often online and tell everyone about what you can do. Refer to all of the above steps again. Bookmark this page and re-read it later!
Know someone who is starting a business or has hobby and wants to share it with more people? Send them this article – use the share buttons below!
Until next time,
Photo credits: Photos courtesy of Omar Lopez, Tribesh Kayastha, Priscilla Du Preez, Victoria Heath, and others via Unsplash. GIFs via Giphy.com.