Starting and growing a business can be hard if you don’t know where to focus your energy. I’ve simplified the process to help guide you to success. Because no one has time to waste!
- Solve a Problem
There is a (you)nique puzzle piece missing in the world and it’s time for YOU to get out there! To help aspiring entrepreneurs find their unique problem to solve. I’ve created The Slingshot Method that I offer with my start-up package and my upcoming course. We all have something to offer. The way we offer it can make it perfect for your specific targeted group. Which is a great segue to #2.
- Decide on your Target Audience
You’ve heard you need to find your niche, right? You may ask, “but why, doesn’t that limit my business?” The answer is that it makes you special and memorable!
Who is your ideal customer? Who can you benefit the most with your experience, service or product? Who have you had great success with in the past? By asking yourself these questions you should start to narrow down who you will serve best.
- Price it Right
New business owners struggle with finding the price range for their product or service. It is actually quite easy. You’ll want to do a competitive analysis and work backward from the salary you want. You will have two numbers that give you the range. I discuss this in-depth in my upcoming course.
- Do your Research
Evaluate the market, analyze your competition, check google trends to see if there is a need, poll your followers and do your keyword research…these and other research methods (reviewed in my upcoming course) will help you make better business decisions.
- Dig Deep for your Mission and Values
Similar to how knowing our values makes decision within our life easier, the same is true with knowing the values of our business. So many things will be thrown your way while operating a business – opportunities, partnerships, marketing tactics, you name it! Knowing your values and mission give you and your team clarity about what is right for the business. If it does not fit, you must ignore it. Along with The Slingshot Method I created, I use a system to lead your business down a path to the highest purpose – discussed in my upcoming course.
- Fully Develop your Brand
When developing your brand there is much to consider. Your color palette, fonts, logo, voice and imagery will express what makes your brand unique. And, at the end you will have a beautiful guideline sheet to reference when making sure you are consistent with your communications both visual and written.
- Determine your methods for Lead Generation
Deciding on your methods can be overwhelming with so many options out there these days. Focus on your strengths! Get familiar with your options and choose a couple that will work best for your business. There is no need to do all and spread yourself thin. Remember to ask, “where is my target audience and what are my strengths?” Stick to those.
- Make a Marketing Schedule
The method I use for creating my schedule is doing a yearly mind mapping of subjects I want to cover (based on my goals for the year), value I want to add and specials I want to offer. I determine how often I want to reach out. At that point you can gather or create all of the content for the year and use a prescheduler like Hootsuite, Later, Loomly or Tailwind to map out each post. Or you can simply mark it on the calendar and meet the set deadline each month.
- Experiment and Fine-tune your 6Ws Story
Who? What? When? Where? Why? and HoW? As you work to grow you business you will learn alot about what is working for you and your customers. You’ll take note and make necessary adjustments. During the first year of my business I kept my niche somewhat open. Over the year, it became clear my thinking on the subject would change in ways I hadn’t anticipated. Definite surprises. Flexibility and learning is key!
As you learn more about what will work best for your business and customers, you fine-tune your story and marketing.
- Go Live!
Websites give your business credibility. SEO makes sure that if a potential customer is Googling your service or product – they will find you. Today’s savy customers research online before spending money on a service or product. You want to be there when they do.
- Automate your systems
The first system I invested in was 17Hats. I had seen advertisements for the CRM years before I opened my business but knew it was something I wanted to look into. How many times had I said, women have to wear SO MANY HATS! I loved the brand before I even worked with it. Great lesson in branding! Anyway, I’m sooo glad that I went with 17Hats. It immediately set me up for success. The platform walked me through the steps to take with my first client. It helped me send my first proposal, contract and invoice. And when I moved that client to a monthly package it scheduled invoices as well. I had an automated payment system and workflow to go along with it. When I get leads it helps me processes them through a workflow to conversion. And, there dashboard connected to my calendar sets me up for daily success.
I just searched to see if they have a referral program and they do! If you need a platform that saves you time and money with TONS of features built in for small businesses, just click on the link I am providing here and it will take you right to the sign up page where you can save more than 50%!
The one thing millionaire entrepreneurs are dong that you are not doing is writing the checks to build and grow your business! If you want to grow, it will take $ to make $. Hiring professionals to help lead the way in areas you need help in is the key to getting where you want to go.
- Work it and repeat! Fulfill your service and product.
Just like the work you have completed and had success with in the past. You will be fulfilling your services as you go. While doing so think of packages or products that might add to the value you provide? And, as stated before get hyper focused on your strengths. You don’t have to do all the things. Just do what you do well and do what you love. The world needs more people doing things that make them hop out of bed every morning! Enthusiasm is contagious.
Now that you are subscribed to the J. Lacey Taylor blog, you will receive How Tos, Business Insights and information about the new course I will be offering soon. We dig deeper into each step in my 13-day Launch and Grow your Business course. You will get daily emails that guide you through successfully launching and growing your business. Homework assignments are created to help move you through the processes so that you can launch your business with confidence.
Did you enjoy the 13 Steps freebie? Let us know what you think. And, here is the pdf version so that you can print it out and use it as reference.