There’s never been a better time to get started on your entrepreneurial dream, and most can start a business or launch a platform in 24 hours or less. With virtually free distribution in our pockets, attracting and building an audience has never been easier. But with great freedom and unlimited options comes great responsibility: with all the choices available to you, which do you pick? Most people get stuck at this point, sliding into paralysis by analysis with endless options.
Below is the 6 step blueprint and an actionable question designed to give you clarity so you can start creating and launch your platform:
1. Identify What You Love Doing
The first step in building your six figure content platform is to identify the medium you already love —even if you’re simply consuming it. Because you’re going to be committing to this long term, it becomes crucial to pick the one you already enjoy. Otherwise, you won’t last.
Whether that’s a video platform, audio, or the written word —choose the one you already spend time with and want to build your skills with. When I started my podcast, I was already obsessed with consuming podcasts, and knew my voice and personality would be perfect for the medium. I was also deeply interested in learning how to become a great interviewer and conversationalist.
Question: What medium is your favorite, and which can you see yourself working on to improve your skill?
2. Determine Where Your Audience is
Once you’ve determined the place you love spending time in already, it’s time to identify where your potential audience already is. For example, you could have chosen video for the first step, but video can mean anything from YouTube to Facebook Live, or even Instagram with the recent addition of IGTV. Each of these are going to attract a slightly different core audience, so identify where the people you’re looking to communicate with are already spending their time and energy.
Question: Which platform is your ideal audience already consuming similar content to what you’re going to create?
“A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.” – Jeff Bezos
3. Launch and Commit to Consistency
Armed with the two questions above, it’s time to get started and launch. This will be where you make most of your decisions; the name of your platform, what the distribution looks like, the length of shows, videos or episodes and more.
But don’t get stuck in logistics — otherwise, you’ll never launch. Done is better than perfect and your first iteration is going to evolve. The best hack for committing to launch is announcing the release of your first episodes, shows, or blog posts.
The second part of launch is committing to a consistent and regular release schedule. This will depend on your medium and platform, but for example, if you’re launching a blog, how many posts will come out every week and on what days? Ask yourself the same question with any other medium and commit to a schedule to create consistency and momentum.
Question: When are you going to release your content and how often?
4. Sharpen Your Skill Set
The fourth step is all about the power of creating and being consistent. Most people fail here —they don’t see the numbers they wanted to see, so they switch platforms and start over. Even those with pre-built audiences from other businesses struggle early on to build their following.
Instead of focusing on what’s not working, focus on building your skills. This includes your communication, influence, persuasion, teaching, writing, interviewing or any other skill associated with the content you’re creating.
Question: What exactly are you doing to improve your skill with your content creation?
5. Let Your Audience Tell You What They Need
Now that we’ve covered the basics and you’re consistent —it’s time to talk about monetizing. Notice how we waited until the fifth step to bring this up? That was for a reason. Too often, people want to monetize from day one and they have zero clarity on who their audience is and what they want.
This is where the magic of building a content platform comes in: they’ll start telling you what they need. Instead of following the traditional model of you building something from scratch and hoping it connects —you’ll find ways to survey your audience and build something they already need.
This is a win, win. You don’t spend time, energy and money building something they don’t want and instantly increase in value by caring enough about them to fill a need or void.
Question: What are the similar challenged or needs your audience keeps bringing up and what can you create to help them overcome these?
“The most important thing to remember is you must know your audience.” – Lewis Howes
6. Create Multiple Revenue Streams
Lastly, once you’ve done all of the steps and have at least one product or service designed to help your audience overcome a challenge, you can start to create multiple revenue streams. The options here are endless, but include: sponsorship, partnerships, advertising, creating more products and services membership groups, exclusive trainings and masterclasses. This is where the magic happens and you’re able to serve your audience based on where they are and what they need.
There’s no question you can create a thriving fix figure (and beyond) platform sharing your expertise or message through any of the available mediums today. There are countless examples who are doing it, and yet many find themselves stuck.
By following these steps, you’ll avoid the trap most do: they try to start on every platform at once and end up burning out or seeing little results. Instead, get clear on the above and focus on launching, being consistent, leveling up your skill —and monetizing by caring enough about your audience to fill one of their needs.
Which one of these steps do you need to work on the most to create a self-sustaining business? Share your thoughts below!