Having a website not only builds credibility, but it makes you accessible to even larger markets. It powerfully integrates platforms with media limitations such as Instagram or Twitter. While those are great social platforms, neither allows you to mix images, audio, video, and sound together with larger amounts of text for descriptive content. A website can literally be thought of as a web or network of your personal brand.
Here are a few of the benefits that a website has to offer:
- Builds Credibility
- Makes Your Business Accessible at All Times
- A Medium to Showcase Your Work
- Gives You an Online Presence
One of the added perks of a website is that they are extremely easy to set up. It's almost plug-and-play these days to set up your website. You basically select a domain name and you're ready to go.
I'll get more in depth on the benefits of a website, how to set one up, and what you'll actually use it for. First off, you'll need a domain name and a host service. By far the best I've seen is Bluehost.
Bluehost is inexpensive, and they have all the tools you need to set things up quickly. If you want a discount, and want to support this blog, use the link below to sign up for 50% off.
Seriously though, for something that is usually only $8/month and discounted down to $3.95/month it really is a small investment that will make a huge impact.
So where do we go from here? Let's walk through some of the great benefits of a website before we get into setting one up.
Benefits of a Website
A website will help you build credibility as a public figure in any industry you are in. Since we are talking about fitness, let's focus on how it will help you be an influencer there.
Over the years I have been to several fitness expos. After the first one, I just knew I had to make sure my personal brand was easy to access. I started out just using Gmail to contact people, and I found that many companies wouldn't even bother replying. Those who did, would often not treat me as the influencer I knew I was.
That's when I decided to change things. I bought my first domain (www.eternityathletics.com) and got to work. I created my professional email address with that domain rather than Gmail and was shocked by the results.
After that next expo nearly all of the companies I reached out to had responded! Not only that, most of them were interested in working with me. That's when I started setting up relationships with companies like Kalifornia Keto and Run Everything Labs.
Those relationships not only provide discounts to my readers (15% off for both of those ones above), but they also allow me to earn a small amount of commission from each sale.
Let's stop right there. I'll go into detail about affiliate relationships later, but I want to point out one thing. I only work with companies I believe in, and I highly recommend that you do the same. Again, more detail on that later.
So with that one example you can see how having a website with a personal domain helps greatly in approaching companies (and individuals) as a fitness influencer.
Gives you an Online Presence
You may be familiar with social spheres on Instagram or maybe you're highly into Twitter. Whichever platform you use, it will be beneficial to integrate that with your website. You can easily add your Instagram feed or Twitter tweets to your site for a more streamlined user experience.
When people see you as more than just an image as they scroll through hundreds or thousands of people they follow, they'll trust you more. You become a public figure. This greatly increases your ability to influence others.
As you grow even more, this website will allow people to find you through Google searches and more organic traffic. People will see your social profiles on your site and be likely to follow you on the platform they most prefer.
Here's an example of what I mean:
- Follow me on Instagram: @jbarkfit
- Follow me on Twitter: @jbarkfit
- Like my Facebook Page: John Barker Fitness
- Subscribe on YouTube: JBarkFit
I've just shown you 4 different social media platforms that I'm on in a mater of seconds. Now you know where else you can find me. If you're interested, chances are you clicked on one of those and followed or subscribed. If not, you simply kept reading.
Earn Loyal Subscribers
This might just be the most important way to communicate directly with those you want to influence. Instagram works great for images. Twitter works great for short text or links. Facebook features both aspects in a slightly different atmosphere.
However, email will become your friend when it comes to getting your message out there. Is there a story you want to tell your audience that can't be captured in a single image? Is there a tip or trick you want to share that helped you recently, and you want to send your audience a link to a recent blog post or YouTube video? Perhaps you partnered with a company and for a limited time can provide a killer discount to your subscribers? This solves all of that.
When someone believes you are influencing them for the better, they will be likely to sign up for a newsletter or give you their email for more consistent contact. You can use something like ConvertKit to do this. That's what I do. This little form right here makes it easy:
When you enter your email there it tells me that you're interested in receiving email updates from me about fitness related content. Of course I won't send countless emails and ignore you to the point of insanity, but either way you can opt out whenever you'd like.
Actually, this month I've only sent out 3 emails to my subscribers. I try to keep them relevant, to the point, and valuable to my readers. I'll typically send out about 1 each week, but we can go into more about those strategies later.
The point is, you can try out ConvertKit for free and see how beneficial it can be for communicating with your audience. This way you can start adding subscribers to your list which will ultimately show you who is loyal and highly interested.
How to Set Up Your Website
Step 1. Buy a Domain
Use this tool to check if the domain you want is available:
Step 2. Install WordPress
There are many options to building a website or choosing a blog platform. The easiest way I have found is to use WordPress (plus it's free!). I've built over a dozen websites that way, and it's very quick and simple.
Once you sign up for Bluehost, use this guide to walk you through the simple process:
Step 3. Pick a Theme
WordPress allows you to pick from hundreds of free themes. A Theme is the way your website and blog look. You can also pay for themes, but I have always found what I need with the free ones.
Here's a guide on how to install a WordPress theme:
Step 4. Create Content and Build Your Site
Now that everything is set up for the foundation of your site you can begin to add to it. You can write blog posts or create pages all from within the simple WordPress interface.
There are many useful plugins you can use to enhance user experience and even to monetize your site. Those are all details which will come in the future, but for now feel free to create to your heart's desire. Don't forget you can get a free trial of ConvertKit to start collecting emails from your readers which you can then reach out to later.
As you can see, a website is an affordable foundation which adds great strength to your ability to influence others. You can create content that will add value for your followers. Instagram, Twitter, and other social media platforms easily integrate into your website for a streamlined experience.
When you get your own site, feel free to email me and I would love to help you personally through the process. Once we get your site where you want it, I may even feature it on here! I look forward to working with you!