Becoming discoverable online. A few creative approaches.

discoverability marketing Feb 13, 2024

Recently, I was working with a group of creative entrepreneurs on a variety of subjects including online marketing.  While I was teaching the group, I asked them to open their laptops and conduct an internet search.  Specifically, I wanted them to search for three things; their name, the name of the person sitting to their right, and my name.  I told them we would discuss what they found after they completed their search.

The results were quite interesting.  In most instances, they found information about people who shared similar names to them.  Some found publications.  Others found arrest records.  Some even found obituaries.  But in most cases, they didn’t find much of anything that actually pertained to themselves or the people they were sitting next to.  

When they searched for my name, however, the results were different.  They found pages and pages of online content related to things I do, things I teach, things I sell, services I offer, events I have participated in, and credentials I have earned.  Admittedly, that isn’t typical, and it certainly isn’t something I was able to establish overnight, but it did provide evidence that the approach I’m taking to online marketing works.  After establishing that credibility with the group, we had a very fruitful conversation about several ideas they could implement as well.

Getting discovered online involves a combination of strategies aimed at increasing your visibility, credibility, authority, and relevance to your target audience. If you’re building a message-based online platform like I am, and like many of the members in our community are doing, let me suggest some creative steps you can take to improve your online presence and increase your chances of being discovered.

1. Create High-Quality Content: Content is king online, so this suggestion is always high on my list.  I'm a huge fan of content marketing because it’s often through the content we create that we create the most value for others.  Whether it's articles, videos, podcasts, or social media posts, creating valuable and engaging content is key to attracting an audience.  

In our group, I often talk about creating what I call a “Content Waterfall.”  A Content Waterfall involves transforming one piece of content (usually something written) into many forms of content.  This is a great way to get a lot done in a short period of time, and it also allows you to become more visible in multiple online spaces at once.

My favorite approach is to start with a blog post that I turn into live teaching sessions, long-form videos, short-form videos, podcast episodes, book chapters, and social media posts.  If you develop a Content Waterfall that you utilize on a weekly basis, your online discoverability will grow exponentially in ways that may genuinely surprise you.

2. Optimize for SEO: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) helps your content rank higher in search engine results. Research keywords relevant to your niche and incorporate them into your content to improve its discoverability.  When it comes to blog posts, video posts, and podcast episodes, make sure you feature some of those keywords in your titles. Doing that will drastically improve the likelihood of you or your content ranking high in search engine results.

3.  Collaborate with Others: Partnering with influencers, bloggers, or businesses in your niche can help expose your brand to a wider audience. Look for opportunities to collaborate on content or promotions.  When you’re in the early stages of building an audience, this can be like rocket fuel for your own visibility because it allows you to borrow the audience of someone more established in your space.  It can also help you build word of mouth as people of influence get to know you and begin recommending you or your services to others.

4. Guest Posting: Guest posting goes hand-in-hand with collaboration.  As often as you’re willing, take the time to contribute guest posts to popular blogs or websites in your industry. This exposes your brand to a new audience and can drive traffic back to your own site.

5.  Engage with Your Audience: Respond to comments, messages, and inquiries promptly. Building relationships with your audience fosters trust and loyalty, leading to increased visibility through word-of-mouth recommendations.  I love when I hear from people who listen to my shows, watch my videos, and read my blog posts.  I regularly hear from them via email, but I also receive messages via my crowdfunding profile on  Whenever someone supports the work I do or leaves me a message of encouragement, I always make a point to reply.

6.  Attend Virtual Events and Webinars: Participating in online events, webinars, or forums related to your industry allows you to network with peers and potential clients or customers.  The more you show up, the more your name becomes recognizable.  As your name gets mentioned in the content of the platforms of other people of influence, your online discoverability will grow as well.  

One particular event that helped me with online visibility was the opportunity I was given to serve as a judge for an online speaking competition.  The organization running that competition ran press releases in all kinds of major media outlets, and many of those press releases remain active online.  Some of my higher-ranking search engine results came from that single event.

All of these approaches work, and they work particularly well if you become faithful in applying them.  As I often say, please remember that building an online presence takes time and consistent effort. Stay patient, continue to refine your strategies, and keep adapting these suggestions to changes in your industry and the online landscape.

© John Stange, 2024

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