How to Get your Online Holistic Nutrition Business Off the Ground, Part II

This is the second post in the series that will help you get your holistic nutrition business off the ground. This is the perfect series for new graduates, or maybe you graduated from CSNN a while ago and have yet to move your practice online. You’re going to learn how to stand out in the busy online space and attract your dream clients. We’ll cover the basics of setting up your online practice, as well as how to grow your business afterwards. Part 2 is going to help you get started on your website and social media accounts which provide the foundation for your online business.

In part 1, we talked about gaining clarity on what unique personality traits and passions make you stand out in the online space, and clarity on who your ideal clients are so you know exactly who you’re trying to speak to and appeal to. Definitely start there before you move on to getting your website and social media accounts set up. It will help guide how you talk about your business.

Why is it important?

The importance of a website and social media account is pretty straightforward: people need a way to find you and purchase your services! I highly recommend a minimum of: website, facebook page, and an instagram account. Facebook and instagram are great platforms for drawing people in, especially because your audience is able to “share” your posts with their audience, therefore growing your audience. Having a website is important because that’s the natural next step your potential client takes when they want to learn more about you and consider working with you. A website makes it clear that you are legitimate and gives them a professional way to purchase your services.

Your website

Start by deciding your business name if you haven’t already. You can use your own name, or create a new business name. Keep in mind that it should be unique, but it needs to be easily understood. If you have to explain what it means, it’s probably too complicated. It also must be easy to spell. If someone were to hear you say your business and website name, they should be able to easily type it into their web browser. Keep this name the same across all platforms. Your website should match your social media usernames, so make sure that name is available as a domain name and on all social media platforms you want to be on.

There are several options for building your website, but the most common are squarespace and wordpress. If you are designing your website yourself with not much experience, I recommend Squarespace as it is very user-friendly for people who aren’t comfortable with coding. If you are having someone do the design for you, you can use wordpress.

There are a few key components you should have on your website:

  1. An “about” page. This part is crucial! As I mentioned before, one of the most important things you can do for your business is to showcase your personality so people can know right away if you’re the practitioner for them. Make sure your website has an about page that includes a photo of you and a bio that includes who you are and why you care about the work you do. Also include what makes your approach different. Maybe you focus on gut health or hormonal health. You want to make that clear right away.
  2. Contact information. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve been on someone’s website and couldn’t find a way to contact them! If you want to increase your chances of someone inquiring to work with you or a natural wellness company asking to partner with you, it’s important that your contact information is easy to locate on your website. I recommend creating a “contact me” page and including a link to it in your main menu so it’s easy to find.
  3. A blog. Is it 100% necessary to write blog posts? No, but you do need some sort of free content to offer people in your community. It could be blog posts or videos or podcast episodes, whatever format gets you the most excited to create content regularly. Then create a page on your website for people to browse through. This gives them a small taste of what it’s like to work with you and draws people into your community of followers. It also helps you position yourself as an expert because you are consistently educating people.
  4. A page for your services and programs. Let people know what you have to offer! Make it easy for someone who is ready to take the next step on their health journey to pay you for your services. We will talk more about creating your services and programs in an upcoming part of this series so don’t fret if you haven’t decided how you want to offer and package up your nutritional consulting yet.
  5. An email newsletter form. Website traffic is great, but people come and go quickly. Ask them to join your email list so they become permanent members of your community. Set up a form that connects to your email provider (check out Mailchimp, ConvertKit, or Flodesk if you don’t have one set up already) and ask for their full name and email address. Explain that there is value for them if they give you their email address, like maybe you send inspiring emails every week or bonus recipes once a month, or maybe you offer a freebie like a printable meal plan or a recipe book. Give them an incentive to give you their personal information.

For your social media accounts:

  1. Grab your username. Sign up on all relevant social media platforms with your business name so that you make sure they all match. You should do this for all of them, even if you don’t plan on using that social platform, just in case you decide to down the line. You wouldn’t want to find out in a year that someone took your desired username.
  2. Give a lasting impression. Your bio on your social media pages is so important. Make sure you describe who you are and who you help so people know right away if you are someone they would want to follow.
  3. Show your face! Many people feel a little nervous to show their faces on their instagram feed, but it’s so important for you to do that if you want people to sign up to be coached by you. They need to feel like they are getting to know you through your social media posts.
  4. Create a content calendar. I’ll be honest, being consistent with social media posting can feel like a full-time job if you aren’t planning ahead and streamlining the process. Make it easy on yourself by, first of all, not taking it too seriously or trying to be “perfect”. Pretty pictures are nice, but most people just want to feel understood. Your caption should speak to them and what their struggles are and how you can support them. They don’t have to be long, just relatable. Decide what you will post ahead of time to eliminate the stress of trying to come up with something on the spot. You can even do this in “batches”: take lots of photos, type up several captions, and have them ready to go for the week ahead. Then all you have to do is hit “post”.
  5. Focus on connecting. Connecting with the followers you have and the people who leave comments is far more important than chasing a certain number of followers. Stick around after you post something and reply to comments. Find accounts similar to yours and leave thoughtful comments. You can also look through the comment sections of accounts similar to yours and head over to the commenters’ accounts to make new connections. Chances are they would be interested in your posts if they have left a comment on an account similar to yours. Encourage people to DM you to chat further. Deep connections are everything in a world of social media where you can scroll through 100 profiles in a minute.

Contributed by Melanie Maxwell, R.H.N.