You may have scoffed at the advice that you should “follow your passion,” especially if you’re passion is not a traditional career path. But at Skillshare, we have learned from our teachers that it actually is possible to earn a living off of your creative passion on the internet and we couldn’t be more thrilled.
One of the easiest ways to get started building a creative business on the internet is through social media. Here are ten tips and tricks to get you started.
1. Set a clear objective
Don’t try to be a chef, quilter and photographer all at once. You’ll get there, but for now, stick with one.
2. Choose the right channels
3. Clarify your brand
People follow consistent and reliable brands on social media, so you want to make sure yours is crystal clear. Check out our tips for branding a Skillshare class – we think they work across channels!
4. Develop a programming schedule
Come up with a dependable publishing schedule for you content – you want to be a source your followers can rely on. Make sure your schedule makes sense for the channels you have chosen, for instance you should tweet multiple times a day!
Grow Your Following
Take a deep breath, this part takes time. Remember, you want subscribers not viewers; a loyal follower is way more likely to become a customer.
5. Seed your first followers
Regardless of which channels you choose, you will want to reach out to your family and friends and add people who follow similar brands on your channels of choice.
6. Optimize for search and discovery
Lots of your organic traffic will come from search. Do a keyword analysis for your brand and link all of your online channels together as well as to helpful resources elsewhere online. You can read more SEO tips here.
7. Know and engage your audience
Make sure your followers know that you are a real person and talk to them! Build an email list for better access across channels and try to give followers call to action – ask them to share content or join a competition. For example, you can use a vote contest to ask your customers what they want you to make next!
Advertising and sponsorships usually come at a later stage in an online business, but this shouldn’t hold you back from earning revenue right away.
8. Sell products or services directly
Build and direct your following to your online store (whether it’s a personal site or an Etsy shop) where they can buy your work or services!
9. Turn your following into affiliate marketers
Offer your followers a commission or discount if they promote your work to their own communities. As an example, check out our ambassador program at Skillshare.
Point your followers to your Skillshare class on your craft and earn royalties per enrollment (and referral fees if your followers become premium students). This last step can also be a great way to start off and build a following!