10 Steps to Content Entrepreneurship
I want you to make money by sharing the benefit of your experience, your ideas, your knowledge, and your expertise, and I am sharing what I have learned from almost thirty years of online publishing in the Authority Bloggers community.
Yes, almost thirty years.
My first personal website went online in 1994. Before that, I hung out on Bulletin Boards where I learned about computer programming, building PCs, IT/Networking, etc and I shared what I learned back with the community. From that humble start, through to today, I have been blessed with so many opportunities and rewards that after decades I am still passionate about sharing this.
If that doesn’t inspire you and show that what I am saying works, perhaps this will:
This is a single payment, from a single company, for a single sale, from one article.
You can do this, and you can do well.
Let’s get into it.
What does your community want right now?
Repetition is a cornerstone of learning so I will say this over and over again.
It’s not about you.
How can you help people in the most profound, impactful way?
What are people actively searching for that is difficult to find, or what can be found is something you can beat?
Your stuff doesn’t even need to be the best in the world, so long as it is accessible, answers their questions, and provides sufficient value.
The Beginner’s Mind
Don’t mistake being a beginner in any field as a bad thing. What teachers call “the Beginner’s Mind” is a superpower because it allows you to put yourself in the position of someone just starting out in their journey.
Once we have a certain level of understanding about a field we become changed by it. We no longer remember what it was like to not know stuff, to not recognize the niche jargon, shorthand, and the importance of some things over others.
Yes, you need to have something to offer – absolutely, but you don’t have to be super far ahead, in fact, the more your content seems like rocket science, the smaller your audience for that content will be because fewer and fewer people will be able to consume and benefit from it.
You need a large enough TAM (“Total Addressable Market”) and that usually means beginners to intermediate. One of my friends in the UK sold a product to Formula 1 teams. Can you imagine how make or break that pitch was?
Free as Proof
One of the things you need to get around is your audience’s natural and healthy skepticism.
The way you do that is with proof, and one of the best ways to prove that you are trustworthy and have value is to show, for free, that you know what you are talking about.
Get your audience member some tangible success and they are going to have way more trust in whatever else you have to offer.
Iterate Your Marketing
Aim for progress, not perfection. It is highly unlikely your first stab at anything is going to be perfect and waiting for perfection is going to hurt you more than putting out a whole bunch of imperfect stuff.
I am not saying put out crap, I am saying make good enough (judged by if it helps people) and get better from there.
The Value of You
Yeah, I said it is not about you, and I stand by that. This does NOT mean, however, that you keep yourself out of it. Quite the contrary.
A big part of my “self-work” is retraining myself to have some self-esteem, but I can say with 100% certainty that YOU are a value-add to your work.
Your specific personality, experience, way of delivering, all adds to the attractiveness of what you do.
Because there will be people who especially resonate with that specific mix, but also in general people want to work with people that they like.
Having people dislike you just means that they are not a good fit, even if that is hurtful in reality.
Once you have people engaging in your content and with you then it is time to try adding monetization.
An easy way to monetize your content is to link out to affiliate offers that are a great fit for what your audience is wanting to achieve.
Test the offers, the way you present the offers, and your monetization strategy mix.
Make a Minimum Viable Product
If you find out that your audience is really demanding a certain thing and nothing quite matches what you think would work well then you have found something amazingly valuable – a gap in your market!
Again, test. Don’t think you will knock it out of the park first try.
Engage Your Community
At this point, your community won’t be entirely made up of people looking for free, which means you have the best source of insight possible. People would pay heavily to have access to such a focus group.
Be helpful, be in service, be curious, and be a valuable contributing member of the community. They will reward you.
Iterate Your Product
With this newfound knowledge you can go back to what you have been offering and make it even more valuable, a better fit, more likely to get the desired results, faster.
It’s like yoga. At first, you won’t see much in the way of results, and you might even be embarrassed or in pain, but eventually, the benefits will start to show.
Work on rapidly trying changes, get closer to the ideal, do not fall into the trap of procrastination and navel-gazing!
This can then help you get even better case studies, and serve more people, at a higher profit.
Just Do It
The best time to start was years ago, the second-best time is right now.