My System To Get Unstuck And Scale Your Business
In addition to Squarespace website design, I train entrepreneurs on developing strategies to start or grow their business. Lately I've seen a shift in clients from start-ups to seasoned entrepreneurs who have been in business for between 2-5 years. They come to me because they're stuck. Things around their business have been kind of status quo for a few months or so, and they're not sure how to get unstuck.
It might be they've seen a steady decline in sales and wonder how to combat that without sinking more money and time into marketing. Or, it might be that they've had enough of selling on a small scale and it’s time to play bigger. It might simply be that they've lost their entrepreneur mojo and need to find a way to get it back.
Whatever it is, I have a pretty standard path that I take them through at the onset of our time together. I’m outlining the process here today. So, here we go…
1. Who are you, why did you start this business?
It’s important to remember why you’re doing this for those times when it all seems so pointless and frustrating. Having this written down as a document you can refer back to in times of need, is incredibly helpful to maintaining your motivation.
2. Who are your clients and what problem are you solving for them?
Often entrepreneurs get so caught up in earning money that they forget who they’re supposed to be serving. They also fall into the trap of trying to serve all the people, all of the time. The actual truth is that, when you narrow your focus on the who, your revenue will actually grow. This thought feels counterintuitive, but trust me, it’s incredibly powerful when developing your marketing strategy.
Think about it. Let’s say you run a baby store that offers eco-friendly baby and toddler products. You sit down to create a website for your business, because you know you need an e-commerce revenue stream. You’re working with a designer. The designer asks for brand building tools, like colour, style and fonts. You’re stuck because you’re not entirely sure. But imagine if you knew the following:
My Ideal Customer is:
Between the ages of 25 and 40
Married with 2 young children
Has a dog and has just purchased their first home.
Loves yoga and running.
Is environmentally aware.
Has a dream to have her home styled by Jo Gaines from HGTV fame.
Follows Jillian Harris, Kim Kardashian and Kylie Jenner on Instagram and makes 75% of her purchases from influencers she finds there.
Favourite websites are Shopbop, People.com and HelloGiggles.
Loves The Lady Gang Podcast and Off The Vine by Kaitlyn Bristowe.
Is deeply concerned about the future of education for her kids, how to style her day 4 dirty hair and whether or not to have a third baby.
Now start creating that marketing strategy again. You now can easily say this website needs to be soft green and yellow. My logo needs to be in the soft green family. It needs to be resource and blog heavy with the purchasing being secondary. You need to have lots of white space. You need to able to connect your IG account for IG direct purchases. You need to find influencers who are willing to share your products. You need an e-commerce site. You need for it to be soft, feminine and styled in a rustic modern way. And on and on.
Now you know exactly who you’re talking to and you can forget about the rest. When you talk to everyone, you talk to no one. Knowing your ideal client and why they’re buying from you is ESSENTIAL to your success. No matter what industry you’re in.
3. What systems do you currently have in place to get products or services into the hands of your people?
Have you set up a series of events that gets people to buy. For example, which social media channels do you use, or do you not use any? Do you have a website? Brick and mortar? When are you open? When they’re in the store, what system is set up for sales success? How often do you send out a newsletter? How do you get clients or customers on that newsletter? And on and on. Look closely and you’ll be able to identify your systems.
4. Take me through a typical marketing plan for a new product or service.
This one’s pretty self-explanatory, but you’d be surprised how many entrepreneurs don’t have a plan. They just throw something out there and wonder why no one buys it. You need a plan and that plan should be started at the bare minimum, 4 weeks out to launch. We’ve got great release or launch warm-up sequences that we take our clients down the path on.
5. When was the last time you did something different? Tried something new. In both personal and professional.
Stuck? Try or do something different. Walk the same way to work every day? Why not try a different route. You’d be surprised at the creativity that releases. Always use Twitter and wondering why it’s failing you miserably? Try Instagram. Always put the same type of products in your window or home page? Same keywords for marketing? Same website home page? Switch things up. Good things grow from change.
6. What habits do you have that help you stay focused?
This one I could go on and on for quite some time, but, suffice it to say, if you’re not developing good work habits, you’re always going to be feeling a bit out of control. Try something in the baby step department. I hate journalling, but every night before bed I write down in scribbled point form, my successes from that day. It’s my success list. It works wonders for my tired brain and gives it a little happiness before the real world falls in around it. Each morning I write my vision for my life and business as if it already happened. And finally, I write my to do list with ruthlessness. Only 3 things survive at a time. The rest can wait. What is the ONE THING I must get done. Grab the book The One Thing to see how to do this. I highly recommend it.
7. Are your expectations realistic?
Are you suffering from a bad case of comparisonitis? My biggest piece of advice is to keep your eyes on your own paper. It’s great to know what’s happening around you, but when it comes down to it, your business is your priority and you need to stay focused on what’s happening inside the business. You’re also less apt to be influenced by what your competitors are up to and surprise yourself in the process.
8. This is the point we work together to set up a system for your success.
Ready to hit that reset button and rebuild? Hit us up for some help. We specialize in Squarespace builds, newsletter strategy and social media consulting for female entrepreneurs and romance writers.