As I was sitting in my RV camping at a music festival recently, it dawned on me: I’m a work of evolutionary forces. I’m also an example of how business works in the 21st Century. Almost 30 years ago, I started working from home as a journalist and corporate copywriter. Twenty years ago, I coined the term “Chief Home Officer” for home-based entrepreneurs and teleworkers who worked from home or the road, and I launched a blog and wrote four books on the subject. Last year, I created RoadtripMojo.com to promote my latest adventure – visiting music festivals by RV.
Each adventure became a social media exercise and potentially profitable venture. Very little “treasure” (or actualy money) was needed. Mostly, I deployed time and talent, and a host of tools available for free on the Internet.
How can you brand your business using the internet, social media, and a healthy dose of sweat equity?
- Find a brand – and name – that works. From ChiefHomeOfficer to www.GotWords.com to www.RoadtripMojo.com, I spent time to search for and research domain names that were keyword rich, spoke to my audience, and were available as a .com URL (or website) and on social media. A great name’s no good if it’s not available or doesn’t serve your purposes.
- Invest time and labor. Setting up a WordPress website, a Facebook business page, an Instagram account, or a Snapchat profile doesn’t cost any money. But that doesn’t make them “free.” Done well, you’ll invest time writing, designing, gathering and posting photographs, and handling the other efforts needed to create the online image of your brand. You’ll also hopefully invest time to learn how to use the search and marketing tools social media provides. Again, they’re “free.” But they’ll cost your time.
- Have fun with it. This serves two important purposes. The more you know your market, the more of an expert you’ll be. You’ll write with authority, and might attract marketing partners willing to pay you to run their ads on your media or to be a “Subject Matter Expert” they might hire to help promote their own efforts. But more importantly, if it’s fun you won’t see it as work.
So, what’s your brand? And what are you doing to build it from a thought you conjured up on the couch or campsite to something people are willing to follow or invest in? Answer that, and you’re on your way to a fun and rewarding brand-building adventure.
Jeff Zbar is a Florida-based journalist, corporate copywriter, event blogger, and married empty-nester who travels the country by RV visiting music festivals and enjoying the open road. Learn more at www.roadtripmojo.com or www.gotwords.com.