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[day 7] FREE ways to grow your audience

LESSON 7: 3 free ways to find more customers and make more money!



Connect on social before you have a product. The sooner you start connecting on social media the better. If you are building your audience organically, it can take what feels like forever to cultivate a following– but don’t worry you will get there.
The best advice I can give is to start early, like today. Even if you don’t have a brand name, website, or even know what you want to make, you can start building your social media. Just make a second personal account (down the road you can always change the account name to your brand name). And, start engaging.
Don't let not having your company set up yet stop you, social media is something you can, and should, start early.
You can post what you are working on. Did you take an online course (hint, hint, like this one)? Did you go out shopping for inspiration in the market? Are you learning how to draw?
Whatever it is, share it. Or, you can also repost content from other accounts, just make sure to credit the original poster. People generally love when you share their content.
Try to set yourself up with a posting schedule, at least 3 times a week. And, then, get commenting. Commenting and engaging is one of the best ways of making connections with other social media users.
Social media is about quality over quantity.
It’s not about the size of your audience, it's about how well they connect with you. For @shopviruteandvice I hired an agency to handle my Instagram account. I have about 17k followers, but my engagement is really low, only a couple hundred likes per post.
I created @alookbehindtheseams as an experiment. I just post what I am feeling and what I am thinking about, no agencies, algorithm manipulations, or bots. The account has hardly over 2k followers but, sometimes I get just as many likes as @shopvirtueandvice account, and I get tons more comments from engaged followers.
Crazy right?
An account with 15 thousand fewer followers can actually perform better! And, the secret is all about connecting with the right people.



Brands have traditionally used Kickstarter as a way to fund their company. But, I am challenging you to think about Kickstarter in a new way. Instead, use Kickstarter to launch your line and steal their audience.
Over 25 million people per month visit the Kickstarter website. That is a lot of potential customers. While there is a lot of work that goes into planning a successful fundraising round (we get into that in detail in LMCL), think about how you can make Kickstarter's audience, and other platforms (like Etsy or Faire) audiences your audience too. 


I know you have probably heard this advice before, but, please hear me out. 
SEO is one of the most powerful free tools that a startup can invest their time into. At virtue + vice I get about 30,000+ unique readers that find me just from Googling! And, it costs me literally nothing.
Creating an SEO plan can be frustrating. It takes a long time to start working. On average I do not see results from anywhere between 3-6 months. But, I promise you this - If you do it right, eventually you will see results.
In LMCL, we have a week totally devoted to SEO and creating plans to optimize results and traffic - because, there is a lot of strategy to it.
I remember back in the early days of virtue + vice, I would spend day upon day writing content. My boyfriend, parents, and basically everyone around me kept saying that I needed to stop spending all my time writing because it wasn't making me money. And, at the time it didn’t. But, I trusted in the process of SEO, and kept typing away. 2 years later I have gone from a couple of hundred views per month to where I am now – all for free.
And, you can learn to do it too!
We aren't done yet download today's workbook, then check in tomorrow for a special bonus day!


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