Any online marketing coach these days will encourage you to stop thinking about your website as if it were a business card or brochure that merely tells people who you are and what you do. That approach rarely influences potential clients to take a chance to make an appointment. And that style of website has long been passé.
Instead, you want to position yourself as a helpful resource, or the go-to specialist on the problems that your niche audience has that you would like to help them resolve.
Providing the public with straight-forward answers to common questions, tips and checklists, inspirational stories of challenges met and overcome, and simply having dialogue with what is in the public consciousness on any given day, generates trust and rapport with potential clients --- and that is what helps people decide that they really want to work with you.
What are Special Reports?
What I mean by "special report" is some kind of article that gives valuable information from your personal perspective and general knowledge that will help members of your client niche understand a common problem, and try a new solution. Another type of special report is a 2 page tip sheet or preparation checklist that will make readers' lives easier.
A special report doesn't even need to be original writing. You can curate -- gather and creatively present -- common knowledge as long as your sources are provided. One of my clients has gathered basic questions and answers about Medicare from a half dozen sources. This report represents the kind of information she is repeatedly asked at presentations and first contact client meetings. With this report, she can now refer new and potential clients to her downloadable report.
A tip sheet can be simply an organized set of bullet lists. One of my most popular tip sheets was one on various methods for dealing with insomnia on one side and pain relief strategies on the other.
A checklist can be a good screening tool for helping prospective clients clarify their therapeutic goals, or for a business coach to help coachees realize what it really means to be a entrepreneur.
From the technical end of things, a downloadable pdf file special report can be indexed on Google, giving you a wider exposure for your knowledge and style of helpfulness. In this way, a special report is a device that increases your search engine optimization.
And from a marketing perspective, a special report gives you a purposeful reason to refer acquaintances to your website, and makes it more likely that people will want to visit and get your "freebie."
The Advantages of Blogging
Even if you don't think of yourself as a writer, even if you think you don't have anything to say, blogging can be a tremendous help in attracting clients. There are two reasons for this.
Reason 1 is that blogging can be a relatively quick way to answer questions that are on the minds of your client niche, and in doing so, you begin to develop a sense of trust and rapport with potential clients.
You might wonder how to find topics to blog about. Topics are truly everywhere, such as, to name a few:
overheard lunch and party conversations
repetitive questions friends and family ask
events in the news that affect your clients
social media posts and memes
Just keep your ears open for what is in the public consciousness that seems to be causing confusion, worry, or frustration and offer your perspective on how to manage the issue. By addressing and even anticipating client concern, you provide a connection for potential clients as well as offering a reassuring voice that keeps you top of mind when they are ready to pay for services like yours.
Reason 2 is that Google likes to see continually new content on websites. And since each blog post gets indexed, you are increasing your SEO juice when you blog. Ideally blog posts are best when they are at least 600 words long, and the longer the better. But you can also post videos in blogs, which can get more viewers than regular writing. YouTube is now considered a social media platform, and its wise for solopreneurs to make use of this if you can.