What’s the best way for a new entrepreneur to market their business? Surprisingly, it’s not what you’d think.
Dannie Fountain popped onto my radar when she spoke on the VenturePop conference stage in New Orleans this Fall. She’s a hilarious, dynamic and fiercely intelligent speaker who kept us riveted with her marketing strategies that focus on your obsessions (uh, passions). She is a serious marketer, whiskey and tattoo enthusiast and a collector of hotel pens. In addition to being a consultant, a current marketer at Google and a world-traveling speaker, she is also just an awesome human being.
Dannie has a unique approach to marketing and that includes mostly not talking about your business…wait, what?
Have a listen to our 15 minute conversation here.
What are your obsessions? What are you always talking about? Bring those into your business.
Dannie has been a solopreneur for 10 years and became profitable quickly. Her advice for those just starting out might surprise you – don’t put too much focus on your website. Why? Because when you’re just starting out, your business will change. It’s inevitable.
The most important thing that you can be doing is figuring out who your target audience is, what is it that you offer, what does your signature service or product look like, because without those things, a website is kind of useless anyway.
If you focus on what you’re passionate about (perhaps borderline obsessed with) and build your business around that, then you ideal client will resonate with that and equally important, your ideal client will resonate with YOU. But what are those things that set us apart from other business offering the same thing? What makes us different? Dannie wants new solopreneurs to dig deep with the following questions:
What is that one thing is that you’re willing to bleed sweat and die for? What is that one thing that you will get up at 5:00 AM for, that you would work late for, that you willing to hustle for? Start to think about centering your business around that.
The intersection of your personal passion and your professional passion is where the magic happens. Like some serious magical sh*t. There’s power in a niche that combines the best of you and the best of your work.What are you willing to bleed, sweat and die for? Click To Tweet
If you can build a tribe and business within your niche that can and will pivot with you as your business grows, you won’t be a slave to chasing the next dollar out of sheer necessity when the feast-or-famine cycle strikes.
By building your marketing effort 20% on what it is you do and 80% on who you are it's a more sustainable long term marketing strategy, that when you do pivot requires less tweaking, and gets you hitting the ground running on the pivot even faster. Click To Tweet
How do you create targeted content that resonates with your audience?
Now that you’ve started building your audience based on your passions AND what it is you do, you need to create content to start conversations around your passions. The fastest and most effective way to do that is through writing.
In order to fast track conversational content creation, Dannie suggests adopting the The Morning Pages exercise where you write in a notebook first thing each morning in your most unfiltered state. Wake up, grab your notebook and write 3 handwritten pages of stream of consciousness without self-censorship. You may end up throwing most of that out and that’s okay. Some of it, hey, maybe even all of it will be a content gold mine. Then use this to have authentic, engaging conversations with your audience. One more time, you can listen to our conversation here.
Last but not least, what happens when you combine a rough spot in business cash flow, LinkedIn and a bottle of high end whiskey? I’m just going to leave this graphic right here. You’ll need to listen to the last 2 minutes of our conversation for the most epic job application ever…
Want to connect with Dannie?