When you’re creating a blog, getting some perspective can help you organize your thoughts.
First, laser focus your sights on the intention of your blog. Look at the best parts of your startup like you’re looking through a High Point Scientific telescope and examine your goals. What do you hope to achieve?
In terms of marketing and driving sales, there’s an open list of goals to consider. Blogs are most commonly used for
Affiliate marketing sales
Building email lists
Promotion for Local Products and Services
Blogs help you drive free traffic to your site. If you’ve got something to sell, a blog can direct your audience to whatever you’re selling.
Information that’s helpful and free always increases the value of your brand. That’s exactly what blogs are designed for. Here are some blogging ideas to get you started.
A Frequently Asked Questions section can be some of your blog’s best content. In fact, it’s so useful that even Google uses it. Just below your search results on Google, you’ll find a “People Also Ask” tab.
This helps Google users find trends in resources or information in one place. Ultimately, FAQs centralize popular information. Using them can increase your SEO and bring new users to your blog.
Top 10 Lists
Nothing keeps an audience reading your blog like suspense. Top 10s are lists that rank items based on your own criteria and build suspense for the final item.
If you simply want to maintain your reader’s attention, suspenseful top 10 lists are the way to go. They can be both informative and entertaining, no matter what your product or service is.
Reviews are designed to inform your reader about certain products and services. They work well for tech blogs because users can see a product’s realistic performance before making a purchase.
If you’re in the affiliate marketing tech niche, reviewing products is also a good way to establish trust between you and your readers. Users are always looking for customer experiences to inform their buying decision.
Instead of visiting sites like Reddit, your users can visit your blog to find the answers they need.
There’s a sea of how-to tutorials and information on Google. The reason is that they’re highly successful pieces of content. Like FAQs, how-to guides can increase your SEO because more people at a time search for that information.
You can also use how-to guides to promote your products and services. For example, an eCommerce store with a blog can show users how to solve a problem by explaining how a product or service works.
Buying guides are also some of the most helpful tools you can implement on your blog. If you sell something, a buying guide should be one of your first pieces of content.
It uses authoritative recommendations to help customers make more informed and efficient decisions about what to buy.
In other words, they make buying easier for the customer and selling easier for you.
Using the High Point Scientific Perspective
Ready to start trying some of these ideas?
Remember that these ideas are only as good as your product, services and goals. Without focusing your goals like a High Point Scientific telescope, you’ll have a hard time establishing a relationship with your audience.
For help on improving your start up take a look at more of our marketing guides.
You don’t need to have a “Eureka!” moment to come up with a great business idea. You can easily come up with great ideas if you ask yourself the right questions.
More people are interested in entrepreneurship than ever before. Everyone gets stuck at “coming up with a good idea.”
One problem I see is people want to create copycat products that aren’t any different from the incumbents. Or they want to make the same thing, but just do it cheaper.
My friend mentioned he wanted to start a protein bar company. They’re consumable, easy to put on subscription model, and decent margins.
The problem is they’re kinda competitive.
I asked him what his bars are going to be like?
“Tastes great, low sugar, high protein, and high fiber.”
My immediate reaction: “How are you going to compete against Quest and all the other protein bars that promise the exact thing?”
You need to solve problems, and you need to solve them in a different way than everyone else.
I’m going to walk you through the brainstorming session I had with him. He’s not pursuing this industry anymore so maybe one of you guys can do something with it (and hook me up with protein bars!) You can approach ideation in a systematic manner. Take the question and framework that I’m using, and use to brainstorm ideas for yourself.
1. What Demographics Aren’t Being Served?
I started getting into skincare when I saw my first wrinkle. I went off to Walgreen’s. And went straight to the men’s aisle and saw my options. I didn’t understand why my facial lotion had to be “extreme.”
Later on, I learned that there’s really no difference between men and female skincare. I’m paying extra for it to smell like trees. You see this in all industries. Women pay something called the “Pink Tax.” You can take this mentality and create a brand around demographics.
You can formulate the protein bars to serve the demographic better. Add some cartoon images for the kids. Older women will be attracted to bars with collagen in them.
2. What’s the Next Diet Trend?
Here are the guarantees in life: Death, Taxes, and a new diet trend.
Keto is the hot diet right now. A few years ago, PerfectKeto came in and crushed it. They have supplements and protein bars designed to help people with their Keto goals. Going vegan is becoming more popular. There are plenty of vegan protein bars out there.
These two markets are probably too competitive right now for you to enter. Do some research into what the next diet trends are. Here’s what I found:
There’s an increasing demand for diets that boost immunity. You can guess why.
Another diet trend is the DASH diet, which is focused on preventing heart disease and lowering high blood pressure. It’s based on restricting the amount of sodium.
Understand the needs of the diet, and formulate appropriately.
3. What’s a Unique Ingredient with Proven Benefits?
The right ingredient can provide a benefit, and differentiate your product from everyone else’s.
What is one unique ingredient that you can add to your bar? How does that benefit help?
Four Sigmatic pioneered the mushroom movement for supplements and coffee. There’s a trend towards people realizing the power of mushrooms.
Exo Protein is using Crickets. There’s a trend toward sustainability. Crickets are the world’s most sustainable protein.
I would research other sources of “weird” protein. Research other cultures. Look at the “past” for inspiration. Bulletproof made butter in coffee popular, but it has existed for thousands of years in Tibet. Chia seeds are popular now with suburban moms, but Peruvians have been eating it for thousands of years.
What other insects could be good sources of protein? You could do an ant, beetle, or grasshopper based protein bar.
Think about how large the “collagen” protein industry has become. What’s the next collagen?
4. What Flavors Are Popular, but Aren’t Utilized Yet?
This one’s inspired by Ben & Jerry’s. I’m looking at protein bars, and they tend to fall into the usual flavors: vanilla, chocolate, peanut butter, cookie dough, cookies and cream, etc. What other interesting flavors can you come up with? Here are a few ideas I have.
Ethnic based. Could there be protein bars that are Indian, Japanese, or Brazilian flavored?
Cereal. When I lived in New York, I loved getting cookies by Milk Bar. Their signature flavor was “cereal.” I wonder if there are any protein bars inspired by our favorite cereals. This could invoke a nostalgia play.
Popular Existing Flavors. What are the top ice cream flavors out there? Which ones aren’t served by protein bars?
Unique flavors are powerful because they encourage repeat purchases. If someone’s a fan of one flavor, they’re going to want to try them all. And for first time buyers, offering a “variety pack” of all flavors will do well.
5. How Can I Deliver the Protein in a Different Way?
Protein bars come in the same standard, rectangular shape.
There’s a market for delivering the protein in a different form.
The first method would be to offer different packaging. Peanut butter usually comes in a jar. Superfats packages peanut butter as on-the-go snacks.
Another idea is to not limit yourself to bars. People want protein. What other forms can you deliver protein in?
Protein peanut butter
Protein peanut butter cups like Reeses
Protein rice cakes
Protein ice cream
6. What Are the Biggest Problems with Protein Bars?
My favorite protein bar is RXBAR.
I’ve always wondered what kind of “crap” companies put into protein bars. RXBAR makes a bold promise on their packaging.
These are their ingredients. That’s it. There was a “transparency” problem with protein bars, and they fixed it.
What other problems could there be with protein bars? The easiest way is to research popular protein bars on Amazon. What are people complaining about in their reviews? I did some research and came up with some ideas:
Someone wants a bar that’s easier to digest. They get upset stomachs whenever they eat one. Create one that’s plant-based and high in fiber.
Someone loves to take their protein bars on hikes, but it gets crushed and melted easily. The bars are individually wrapped in a harder plastic.
7. How Can I Make Protein Bars More Functional?
I’m assuming most people eat protein bars as a convenient and healthy snack. What if the protein bar could contain ingredients that help them serve a specific purpose?
Survival Bar: People are into “survival” and emergencies more than ever because of COVID-19. Create one that’s designed to last longer than traditional. Their bars last for a year, ours is designed to last for a decade.
Sleeping Protein Bars: Some people have trouble falling asleep at night. It could be because they’re going to bed hungry. What if there was a protein bar designed to help you sleep. It’s easy to digest and has some sleep aid ingredients such as L-theanine.
Focus Bars: Contains Nootropics and caffeine. A better alternative to coffee and energy drinks. They help you focus and keep you full!
The Beauty Bar: Eat this protein bar to improve your skin. It’s full of collagen and retinol.
8. How Can I Create an Aspirational Brand Story?
People love stories.
I was broke in college, and I needed a notebook. There was the generic one for $5. Next to it was the $20 Moleskine.
I went with the Moleskine even though I couldn’t afford it. This was the journal of Picasso, Van Gogh, and Ernest Hemingway. Maybe writing in this notebook would help me become more creative. Buying it increased my sense of identity. Think about what tribes would buy a protein bar and who they’d aspire to be like.
Viking Protein Bars: Crossfitters and Tough Mudders think they’re warriors. When the Vikings went to war, they brought along protein bars. These protein bars are based on ancient recipes.
Louis and Clark Bars: Hikers want to be like Louis and Clark. These protein bars were inspired by a recipe found in one of their journals.
Military / Patriot bars: I don’t need to do a search to know that there are military and patriot inspired protein bars out there.
There’s who the customer is now, and there’s who the customer wants to become. The customers buy products to help them feel connected to their end goal. It’s why some people are willing to buy Louis Vuitton even though they can’t afford it. It’s what they aspire to be like.
You Have More Ideas Than You Think
I haven’t always been in business ideation mode.
But I have spent over a decade generating angles and headlines. I’ve learned that the easiest way to generate ideas is through questions and formulas. 4 Profitable Headline Formulas Angle Generation System With this article, I wanted to show how I’d approach a competitive industry such as protein bars. One more note: don’t be scared if your product already exists. Apple didn’t create the first smartphone. Execution is more important.
Please rate this article – it helps me know what to write!
Personally, I’ve always thought it was quite tough to try and start a business in the offline brick and mortar world. In most cases, the numbers just don’t make sense and the startup and management costs are simply way too high. Take a look at the internet and how easy it is to start up an online business, brand or blog — and it’s more obvious than ever before.
However, just because it may be ‘easier’ and more ‘cost-effective’ to get started with an online business, that it will actually be easy to guarantee any type of success. Depending on the type of business you want to create, you very well might need some additional funding or capital to help get things moving. The good news is that you won’t need to kneel and beg at your local bank to try and get some money. Once again, the internet has made the process of borrowing money and getting funding even easier.
Today I wanted to share a few different methods and resources to help anyone get their hands on some much-needed cash when starting a business online.
PayPal Working Capital
Many individuals and small businesses are already using Paypal to accept and send out payments. Something not everyone knows about is Paypal Working Capital. In short, Paypal makes it extremely easy to borrow money through their account. Based on your history and revenue flowing through your account, you can apply for a Paypal Working Capital loan and instantly receive up to 25% off your annual revenue (flowing through Paypal). The great thing about this method is that Paypal charges only a small percentage and the payback process actually comes out as a percentage of each incoming transaction to your account. It’s also free to apply and your credit score won’t be affected.
Get a Small Business Loan
One of the most common ways to get your hands of some business money is through the use of a business loan. When it comes to working with banks and financial institutions, there are many different types of business loans to choose from (such as SBA Loans, Term Loans, Equipment Financing and a Business Line of Credit to name a few). As mentioned earlier, it’s also a benefit to working with any legitimate and trusted online banking sites to set any of these up. There is no longer a need to visit your local branch, as it’s way too fast and easy to compare and shop around different loan rates and introductory offers online.
Pre-Sell Your Idea
If you currently have a business idea that is based on your expertise or something you’d like to package up and sell, a great idea before investing a ton of money into the business, is selling if you can pre-sell your products or services before getting started. This is something we’ve commonly seen in the world of online marketing and selling courses online through webinars. It shouldn’t be hard for you to come up with a business plan and reasons why someone would want to buy your product. Pull all of this together and create a webinar for your audience, then sell the idea to them at the end. Give your audience an option to gain access early and become one of the first customers. Get enough of these customers and you might be able to prove your idea a profitable success before you even get started!
If crowdfunding has taught us anything, it’s that ‘anything’ can generate millions of dollars online if it’s pitched in the right way. Sites like GoFundMe and Kickstarter have raised hundreds of millions of dollars for new ideas, products, and services before they’ve even come to market. This concept is similar to the one above in that you are getting funding before actually selling the product, but most crowdfunding sites do come with their limitations and transaction fees in the process. To find the most success in crowdfunding, take the time to look at previous campaigns that have gone on to hit their goals and even more. It’s not just about the product, it’s also the message, delivery, and marketing of it.
Start with Your Own Money
When all else fails, or if you have some extra money set to the side, why not just invest in yourself? One of the best ways to fund your next business idea or startup is to actually put your own money into the company. Not only will this give you a bigger incentive to find success, it will also allow you to instantly save on interest fees and also allow you to start your company on the right food. Depending on the size and startup costs of your new business, this might be easier said than done — however, if you do have some money set to the side and are completed dedicated to making your business idea work, this is a great option for getting started.
How to Launch a Successful Business in 2017
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to invest in yourself and your business outside of the traditional methods used many years ago. Almost anyone can get their hands on some extra money to help fund their business idea, it’s just a matter of how much history you have behind you already, how you want to pay your loan back and what direction your business might be headed. No matter what option you choose, always focus your business on the end customer and their user experience to find the best long-term results.