When you're a small business owner you have an excess of a lot of things but time is NOT one of them. As such many of us find ourselves in the same situation - we're focusing so hard on helping our clients that we ignore OUR business in the process. Months and years go by and our once-innovative advertising methods grow stale and ineffective as we outgrow our systems and are OUTPACED by our competitors.
We tell ourselves this isn't our fault. It's the market. Or the lack of time. Or the lack of help. Or the lack of know-how. Or the orbital patterns of Mercury. But you know as well as Aries, himself that that's not true. Aries, is the ruler of Mercury - it dawned on me in proofreading this joke may not slap for the non-Astronerds! The plants that are watered are the ones that grow and ultimately you haven't been MINDING YOUR BUSINESS!
And no judgment y'all because in a lot of ways - neither have I! Last year was one of those years I felt like I was barely hanging on by unreasonably brittle fingernails. So this year I'm getting a little bit back to basics and I'm focusing on minding my business! So today I'm going to share the 5 ways you can join me in minding your business this year!
Tip #1: Know Your Target Market
Have you ever defined your target market? Has it changed since you defined it? Understanding your target market is one of the most essential ways to mind your business. Understanding who you're trying to reach can help to consolidate your strategy ensuring you aren't wasting precious time and other resources on unnecessary efforts. As well as; and MORE IMPORTANTLY, ensure that you are reaching who you want to be reaching!
👉👉Action Step: Take an hour and a cup of coffee, a glass of wine, or a little devil's lettuce wrap and think through the question of "Why am I trying to sell to, where do they spend their time, and what type of content will they respond to?" There are plenty of free online resources on this topic if you're interested in a deeper dive but at a minimum have an understanding of your target market - that will be your compass henceforth on our journey!
Tip #2: Make Time for Your Business
If last year came and went and you found yourself with fewer free hours than you have pinky toes you're not alone. One of the things that all time management coaches can agree on is that you only have time for what you make time for. And if you're frequently in triage mode handling only what you can catch as a hoard of people are hurling tiny fires at your head YOU ARE NEVER GOING TO REMEMBER TO follow up with that old lead, research your next blog, or identify potential collaborators or anything professional progressive.
You'll be lucky if you even remember to send the invoices on Friday. So ....
👉👉Action Step: Make an effort to treat your business like a client. Schedule real, meaningful time in your calendar to work on work things that are exclusively for your business and walk into it with the same zest and magic you would walk into any other project with.
Tip #3: Build out your Sales Funnel
Your sales funnel, for those who aren't familiar, is your basic tiered offer. Why tiered? What if I only have one service such as in private practice? You still need a sales funnel with several types of offers for potential clients of various interest and readiness levels.
Here is a basic template for an effective sales funnel:
A free offer for those interested but not yet ready to start.
These serve to ensure that interested customers never leave your site empty-handed and start the sales conversation. Our free offers include our free consult call, our free Canva Social Media Templates, and our freebies such as our Complete SEO Checklist.
A low-cost offer for those ready who like you but don't like like you!
This step in the funnel will vary the most across industries. If you're a shop for example the goods themselves will serve as all your mid and high-tier offers, and you will want to focus more on your free offers to draw people in. In the case of The Clever Catalyst, we have a lot of these low-cost offers and use them as a feeder to our biggest sell.
Low-cost steps on our funnel look like monthly SEO-Optimized blogs starting at $50/month and Social Media Packages as low as $80/ week. These are not huge commitments for clients to make and ultimately help to build trust and allow me to generate enough extra income for them to justify my big sell!
A high-end offer for those ready to buy one of everything on the menu. This should be your largest sell.
For several years I worked for several different dental clinics and all of them had the same high-end offer, $30,000 full-mouth dental implants. In our case of us, it's full-service digital marketing.
Having several different sales offers of varying cost and commitment levels can help to ensure you're always reaching everyone where they are and you miss NO ONE!
Tip# 4: Grow your Tribe
The importance of getting the right team behind you cannot be understated! I have said it a thousand times before and I will say it a thousand times more I would be significantly less effective, successful, creative, and fulfilled without the presence of my team and the client teams I have the pleasure of being a part of!
I have gotten more leads from current clients (I'm looking at you Laura) than I have any other sales source. This has been the truth since way back when it was just me living that #freelancerlife and it's still true now. (and mind you, I'm a pretty decent marketer!)
I have found more actionable solutions from my LinkedIn network and Facebook groups than ever successfully acquired on live chat support. And in certainly much less time and far less repeating myself required!
All this to say having a tribe of people you can turn to for help, you can count on for support or learn from is an invaluable resource and one never acquired too soon. (Psst. have marketing questions? Ask us! We can be a resource for you! Text us at 614-233-1943 or hit us up on any of our socials!)
Tip #5: Invest in Your Business
Ultimately this is what we've been talking about this entire blog but it seemed a fitting point to close on. So far we've discussed methods for investing your time in minding your business but now is where I hit you in your wallet. You have to be investing in your business.
As a small business owner myself, I understand the need to keep a watchful eye on the budget. Not to mention the list of things that need to be invested in is always much longer than the list of resources set aside to serve them! The truth is when you don't make a priority to invest in your business you're sending a powerful message to your potential customers and it's a good one!
👉👉Action Step: Set a monthly or quarterly budget, a reasonable amount of money you think you can invest in your business, and start a list of potential investments to make. This can be as small as setting up a monthly consultation call with an expert like us, for less than $50 or taking a skillshare course to learn how to email market like a pro! Or it can be an large as undertaking a new website build or a complete rebranding!
Of course, these are but a few of the ways you can mind your business in 2023. The idea is infitately customizable and should in no way be limited to these 5 tips alone. The intention of our little Mind Your Business movement is just for you to make space for you to be with YOUR business this year and to make sure that this time next year you're looking back with pride and awe at what you've accomplished rather than wonder of what could have been if only.....
Before you go sign up for our email newsletter and keep up on some effective and easy-to-employ tactics for minding your business all year!