Shop Talk: Build It and They Will Come (Or Will They?)

Shop Talk snippets from One Woman Shop

Shop Talk snippets from One Woman Shop

Shop Talk snippets from One Woman Shop

Welcome to Shop Talk! While we love providing you with jam-packed, actionable posts, we also wanted to share quick, thought-provoking snippets here and there -- from our brains to yours.

We were recently chatting with a friend, discussing her new business website and how she would get people there. (Because that’s what solopreneurs love to chat about, of course.)

Naturally, the phrase “build it and they will come” popped up, so we got to talking about that myth. We talked about how many people still hold on to the idea that if they pop up a site, thousands of eager individuals will be knocking down their metaphorical door, wanting to come inside. As most of us have experienced, this just doesn’t happen.

We joked that, as a business owner, you’ve got to get out there, grab their hand, and invite them in. Bring them a cup of coffee, show them around, and make them feel comfortable.

But all jokes aside, it’s up to you to do just that. To continue the metaphor, think of it like this: You just moved into a new house but none of your neighbors saw you move in. So, they don’t know that you’re in there, waiting for them. What’s a savvy solopreneur to do? Make some delicious baked goods and go door-to-door introducing yourself!

How can you do this in your business?

  • Guest post on other sites -- share your expertise or even mention a freebie that you offer through your site
  • Pitch yourself for podcasts or interview series
  • Email people you keep bumping into on Twitter chats or in comment threads

Make the end goal inviting them back to your place -- your website, that is -- so that they can get to know you even more. Share a freebie, mention a specific post you think they’d love, introduce them to your new product or service.

Or, as Carrie Smith of Careful Cents says: “Build it and they will come...if you promote, promote, promote.”

PS -- We talk about all of these concepts (and more!) in the Building Your Online Community e-course.

Building Your Online Community

  1. This is so true. Your true work starts when you begin to tell others about what you’ve done. Too many bloggers get discouraged by the lack of early results and end up quitting. Instead, they need to understand the work they need to put in for those results to be realized. In fact, they should learn to enjoy the effort it takes (and the engagement) so it seems a bit less painful.

    If you go into it knowing you are in for the long haul, start to engage with like-minded communities, form relationships, and then enjoy that organic growth.

    – Jeff

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