Starting a Home-Based Business? Get Your Name Out There!

at home business.

One of the biggest problems that many home-based business owners face when they’re first starting out is a lack of visibility.  Supporting your new enterprise can be a real problem when you don’t have a lot of money to advertise and prospective clients have no idea who you are or what type of service you can offer (with no history to back you up, you could have a very hard time convincing potential customers to give you a chance).  Luckily, there are a lot of ways to get your name out there and build up a solid brand image even when you’re just starting on the path to success with your new home-based business.  Here are just a few strategies you may want to try.

1.     Website.

In this day and age, setting up shop online (especially if you work from home) seems like a given.  And yet, many home-based businesses still operate on paper (or solely through email).  Join the internet revolution or you won’t have a prayer of competing.

2.     On-site blog.

Once you have developed a website that is professional, pertinent, and user-friendly, go about adding an on-site blog.  Not only will regular postings encourage repeat visitors to your site, it will allow you to disseminate information about new products or services.  And you can spread your name to related websites by doing guest posts for a link back to your site (most other blogs will do this only if you have an on-site blog).

3.     Post on forums.

A great way to get to know colleagues and prospective clients is to join forums related to your business.  You can not only receive pointers from industry insiders, you can also offer your own expertise to help others.  And when you post comments, you can attach your link at the end (as long as you don’t do so gratuitously).

4.     SEO.

Search engine optimization is a complex but comprehensive way to expand the scope and influence of your business while simultaneously bringing targeted traffic to your site.  You can learn it on your own (check out SEO for Dummies to get started) or pay for the service.  Just make sure you find someone reputable (use referrals).

5.     Client list.

Building up a list of prospective clients and taking the time to check in with them periodically is a good way to keep your name fresh in their mind.  Never hesitate to self-promote, but be sure to avoid spamming.

6.     Trade shows.

Whatever your industry, there is likely a number of trade shows you can attend.  They offer the opportunity to those new to a profession to meet and greet colleagues at their different trade show exhibits (as a method of face-to-face networking) in a capacity that could lead to partnerships, as well as potential clients.  In addition, you will have access to seminars, panels, and workshops.  And often there is a show floor where vendors can hawk goods and services related to the industry.

7.     Chamber of Commerce.

By becoming a member of your local Chamber of Commerce, you can open yourself up to business opportunities within the community in which you operate.  You never know when such contacts can come in handy and you may even have the chance to speak to the assemblage as a way to promote your business.