Clients are the livelihood of your online business. Yet, getting clients is one of the challenges each online business faces today.
We know that your online business and offer are unique. Still, people won’t discover and start using your service just because you’ve started running a business.
For your business to prosper, you need to find and attract new clients daily and do your best to onboard and engage them. So where and how to find clients for your online business?
Let me disclose a few tips in the article below.
1. Know your target audience
If you are new to the business, you need to start with defining your target audience.
A target audience is a group of individuals whom your marketing message is addressed to. Let’s say, it is not the best idea to promote an email marketing platform to a social media influencer. There’s no sense in attracting a mobile game dev to hats design. The examples are endless.
Got what it is? Your target audience is a group of people who are or may potentially be interested in your offer. Obviously, they have some characteristic features in common (women of 25-35, email marketers in the US, etc.).
With a clear understanding of your target audience, you can:
- Choose the best methods and places to find your potential clients
- Target your marketing efforts
- Get the most out of your time, effort, and money
- Promote content that resonates with the demands of your audience
- Launch cost-effective strategies that will eliminate lengthy procedures
All in all, before you start searching for new clients for your online business, define your target audience. Then, specify your buyer persona.
2. Create a buyer persona
A buyer persona is a research-based representation of your perfect client. This is a profile of a customer who is the most likely to buy from you. With it on board, you can:
- Release a targeted approach to your audience: reach out to those who are worth your efforts and will become your customers.
- Save your resources (time, money, efforts): do less, get more; with a buyer persona, you will spend the resources on the desired offers only.
- Optimize marketing and sales: concentrate on your potential clients, and you will convert them easier, nurture right, and grow your revenue faster.
- Skyrocket your business: you will know where to grow and how to develop, how to improve, and how to sell more.
The information required for developing a buyer persona may be specific for every business and vary according to niche or industry. Still, there are a few general points for any business:
- Demographics (gender, age, education, religion, etc.)
- Business type
- Revenue level or size
- Geographical location
- Buying preferences, concerns, fears, etc.
- Peculiarities of the decision-making process
- Position and job title
- Needs, demands, pain points, etc.
Note: you will need to create a few buyer personas. The more buyer personas you have, the more targeted your approach is.
3. Use outbound techniques
Outbound lead generation is the process of a sales-customer collaboration in which the sales rep initiates communication.
The most popular ways of outbound marketing are cold emails, social media outreach, and cold calls. They help professionals find leads and move them through the sales funnel to a customer stage.
As we are speaking about how to find clients for online business, I won’t concentrate on cold calls. Instead, I will show you what cold emails are, where and how to get in touch with your potential clients, which social media you can use for lead generation, and a bit more.
Social media outreach
Social media marketing is a powerful tool in the hands of a professional. There, one can not only find new prospects but also initiate communication, build relationships, help leads make their decision, convert them into clients, nurture them, and keep them engaged.
Everyone knows the largest social media platform, Facebook, with over 1 billion users. This is an excellent place to discover potential clients and generate leads primarily for B2C businesses. Another bright example is a professional social network, LinkedIn. There are over 400 million professionals which makes it perfect for B2B businesses.
Besides these two, there are hundreds or even thousands of social media platforms on the web. And they all are the places where you can find clients for your online business.
Cold email outreach
Social media is great. Still, emails are a bit better. Email remains the most popular method of communication with 3.9 billion users worldwide. What is even better for you as a professional: this number is constantly growing and it is predicted to be 4.4 billion in 2023.
Impressive, isn’t it?
This information turns email into an important part of professional life and makes it the primary channel for your online business. Emails are vital for lead generation, growing your brand’s awareness, increasing the leads’ base, nurturing, and converting them.
Yet, one question remains open. How to find the email addresses of your potential clients? Luckily for you, there are professional tools, email finders.
Fast and accurate, user-friendly, and easy-to-use, they help you surf websites and your leads’ profiles on social media. They provide the leads’ email addresses to help you get in touch with them. How awesome is that?
4. Implement inbound strategies
Contrary to outbound, inbound lead generation is all about the communication between a client and a sales rep or a marketer in which the first one gets in touch with the second one.
The key element for inbound is any type of content you can create and spread over the web with the aim of attracting potential clients. Here are a few best practices for inbound lead generation.
Create valuable content
Content drives inbound lead generation. With it, you can attract leads to your service, platform, product, etc., and convert them into loyal customers.
Here are a few content types examples you can create and share via various channels:
- Blog posts and guest posts
- Glossaries and knowledgebase
- Ebooks and white-papers
- Videos and pictures
- Podcasts and audio posts
- Social media posts
- E-courses and webinars
- Case studies and testimonials
- Product announcements and news
- Reviews and challenges
There are two points you need to remember.
Content is not about direct sales, it’s all about attracting leads (and a few hidden ads:-)). Do not be too self-promotional, educate people, and disclose information they need or may get interested in.
Secondly, make sure the content you create is valuable and helpful. You also need to predict the leads’ questions and give answers before they arouse.
Optimize your content
Content is undoubtedly the most efficient method for both B2C and B2B inbound lead generation. It drives visitors to your website, engages, and helps you convert them. People can reach your website through content. But where and how do they find it?
Most often, people search for some information in search engines, and somehow they can come across your blog post or podcast. For them to see your content, it needs to be easy-to-find. Obviously, I’m speaking about search engine optimization and keywords.
As a professional, you need to have a set of content marketing tools to help you release your strategy. To put it simply: when you create a blog post, analyze the keywords with a tool like Ahrefs and add them to the post. When your post appears in higher positions in Google, more people will see it when googling and will visit your website.
The better the content is, the more optimized it is, the more people will find it and the more clients you will get. What is more important: your website will be more visible than your competitors’ 😉
Social media is a great source for your business. Besides searching for email addresses, you can attract leads in numerous groups. Create brand groups, join your niche groups, take part in conversations and discussions, comment posts, and so on.
People love watching videos and pics and reading posts on social media. What prevents you from attracting leads on social media? Create content, publish it, and share it in groups. All of this will help you gain more and more leads every day. Surely, the content should be relevant and well-designed and written.
Think of Quora. How many people visit it monthly? Over 300 million. Search for the questions related to your business and niche, answer the questions, get upvotes, and gain higher visibility. The better your answer is, the more people will see it, the more potential clients you will have. So simple.
It’s not always that easy to manage work on social media. Luckily, there are lots of social media marketing tools that will lighten your workflow. Some of them will help you analyze content, others will support you with design, a few others will provide stats on your performance, and so on. Choose your tools and make social media work on you!
Ready to start now?
So where and how can you find clients for your online business? Online. Social media and emails are the best sources of leads and their further conversion into loyal clients.
There is no magic in generating clients for your online business. Work hard, find appropriate groups on social media, be active there, create valuable content, share it, send email campaigns to your target audience, and reap the fruits of your work.
Do not spend time in vain and start right now!
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Helen Holovach is a dedicated copywriter for the Snov.io blog. She’s passionate about email marketing, deep research, statistics, mobile games, and singing songs to a guitar.