This is a guest post from Sveta Kornienko & James Longley @ Healthpreneur healthpreneuronline.com, an online marketing consultancy for nutrition and wellness professionals.
As a nutrition business owner your focus is on improving your clients’ everyday quality of life.
It’s no surprise then that marketing yourself can feel unnatural and a bit like a sleazy attempt at self-promotion. Fortunately, marketing your nutrition business online can be simultaneously authentic and beneficial to both your clients & your business in equal part.
But how do you reach your ideal clients online with effective marketing messages?
Why 1-to-1 networking is holding your business back
Remember your last networking event?
Each new encounter required that you repeat the process of introducing yourself, explaining what you do and describing what makes your nutrition business different.
Though a fantastic way to connect with people, these conversations are inherently inefficient as a marketing tool. You only have a certain amount of time at your disposal and you need to use it as efficiently as possible.
This is where an effective online presence really starts to pay its way for your nutrition business.
Making the most of the wealth of online opportunity
Think about what your own buying journey looks like. In this digital age, you likely don’t even go out to dinner without looking the restaurant up on Yelp or TripAdvisor. And remember all the reviews you trawled through before finally shelling out for your NutriBullet? The internet is truly an all-pervasive aspect of our daily purchase decisions – big and small.
Why then did our (extensive) research show that the majority of nutrition business owners consider their website an ‘online business card’? Is your online presence simply a place to send the people you meet at networking events?
Today more than 3 billion people are using the internet to find solutions to their problems. For 85% of those 3 billion, the journey to an eventual purchase begins online. Can you afford not to make the most of your online presence?
Eliminate overwhelm by finding your focus
Making the most of your website and overall online presence is like any other worthwhile pursuit in that it requires a clear plan & a specific intention if it’s to yield the results you’re after.
Say for example you identify your primary goal as using your blog to increase the number of visitors signing up for your email list.
Making that decision is the first - and most crucial - step in defining the exact actions you need to take in order to grow your email list.
“Choosing a specific area of focus is the decisive first step to eliminate indecision and marketing overwhelm."
Achieving your business goals by finding your ideal client
Having decided that email list growth is your primary focus, the crucial next step is to determine exactly who you want to attract to your nutrition business. But what steps should you take and what should you consider?
Step 1: Define the specific problem your product or service solves for your ideal client
- Help overweight clients reach - and stay at - their ideal body weight?
- Improve skin appearance by balancing your clients’ hormones?
- Make meal planning simple for coeliac clients?
Step 2: Determine the level of market demand for your product or service
Gauge demand with the 3 simple steps below:
- Review how many enquiries you get for the specific product or service
- Think about where your expertise and the market’s demand intersects
- Research how many people/companies offer the specific product or service. Though slightly counterintuitive, the presence of other providers is a great indicator of demand
Step 3: Identify which section of the market you want to serve
It’s within this group that you’ll find the person we refer to as your ‘ideal client’. To identify this person, start by looking over your client database and noting down the characteristics of the clients you most enjoy working with.
Find her qualities by determining her:
- Income level
- Personal values and goals
- Challenges – both personal and business
- Preferred places to hang out (on and offline)
It’s here at the intersection of the problem you solve, your ideal client and high demand for your product/service that the perfect business opportunity exists.
How to reach your ideal client
The information you’ve collected is the key to discovering exactly what your ideal client wants and needs. It also reveals how you should communicate with her in order to draw her closer to your brand.
Step 1: Determine where s/he hangs out online
Say for example you discover that your ideal client is an avid Facebook user and member of numerous nutrition-related Facebook groups. You can then look at which groups she hangs out in (that are relevant to your nutrition business).
Step 2: Join her conversations and contribute in a meaningful way
You can then start actively participating in a way that is helpful and shows your expertise without an expectation of return by:
- Sharing your expertise without promoting your own business
- Sharing valuable content you’ve created
- Suggesting resources/tools
Step 3: Listen carefully to what your ideal client says
Better still, knowing where your ideal client is online enables you to listen in on what she says and how she says it. This socially acceptable form of eavesdropping is the perfect way to learn more about your ideal client. You’ll discover the language she uses, the places she goes, her likes and dislikes, the kind of content she likes to consume and even the products or services that are missing in her life.
This process is the most efficient way to extract the marketing gold that will pave the way for the products and services you develop in the future.
In summary: How to find and reach your ideal client online
To find your ideal client you need to:
- Understand the problem you solving
- Determine whether there is demand
- Identify your ideal client
To reach your ideal client online you should:
- Determine where s/he hangs out online
- Join her conversations and contribute in a meaningful way
Sveta Kornienko & James Longley are the co-founders of Healthpreneur, an online business & marketing consultancy that helps nutrition professionals build thriving businesses through effective online marketing.