Business can often seem rather complicated, right? There’s a lot of different moving parts to the business puzzle and in the early days (and even later on!) it can feel pretty overwhelming to get everything in place and running smoothly.
In reality though, it’s often simpler than we believe it to be.
The trick is to ensure you start by building solid foundations and to have a very clear focus on refining and getting those critical foundations working well – before attempting to tackle the more complex aspects that will allow you to scale.
So, here are the three critical foundations I suggest you focus on first – and revisit often!
Working on your mindset is often overlooked in preference for more tactical, hands-on tasks, as it can be tricky to tackle your own thoughts and thought processes. However, without this important piece of the business puzzle, you’ll be seriously limiting your success.
Trust me – I’ve learnt this the hard way and the more I rewire my own internal beliefs and thought patterns, the more my business grows. I’ve also seen it in my husband with his business and many others. Nothing works as well as it could and should, unless you approach things from the right attitude and outlook.
This topic can be absolutely huge and you’ll find there will be more ‘layers’ to uncover and deal with as your business gets bigger.
For a few basics though, it’s a good idea to examine your beliefs around…
- How you view money
- What you believe about sales
- And how you feel about yourself, your value, your abilities and your service or product.
Unless you develop the capacity to embrace money, sales and your own value as a person and in your business – you will struggle.
For example – you might feel awkward around asking for the sale and for money – because deep down, you believe that money is dangerous and that you don’t deserve it.
A better belief would be that money is a mere exchange of value, time and energy, making a sale means you’re simply serving or helping someone and that you have everything you need to serve that customer and get them results (which you should, if you’re offering it!).
It may also mean that you need to change something about how you package up or offer your products or services so that you can truly believe in them and therefore get behind selling them – without any hesitation.
Messaging is all about communication through effective copywriting.
How we talk to our clients and customers – how we describe what we do or offer – and how our words can make them feel.
Effective copywriting and messaging must focus on the intent or strategy of the message and the emotional needs or desires of our audience.
You’re unlikely to get anyone’s attention by merely providing the technical features of a product or service (eCommerce owners take note!).
You need to take the time to tap into the true desires of your audience and then tailor a message that connects deeply with what they want.
Emotions ultimately sell, facts help them justify their decision.
You also need to focus in on the outcomes your audience is looking for.
For example…are they a mum wanting a new pair of jeans that are comfortable AND flattering for their post-baby body? If that’s your audience and product, that’s quite a possibility and that’s the type of thing your copy needs to lead with first.
They’re probably less concerned about how many ounces the denim is or any other technical details of the fabric – those elements, come AFTER or second to the main outcome and the primary emotional need.
It’s also wise to note that the more human you are, the more relatable you are and the more YOU or authentic you are, the more you’ll stand out.
It’s all very well to have the right mindset and the right messaging, but you still need a way of getting your messaging and products or services in front of the right people – in order to make the sale.
That’s where the marketing comes in (clearly!).
Marketing these days IS a tricky beast (there’s just so much noise out there!) and it can take time to discover the best strategies and tactics that work for you and your particular business.
When starting out – you must start small and then build, over time. Otherwise, you’ll be heading straight for overwhelm and therefore, inaction.
A basic social media presence on Facebook as a minimum, and then I recommend Instagram (particularly for eCommerce!) and, if your audience is more service-based or professional, LinkedIn.
Build your following organically by networking in relevant Facebook groups. Or, you might like to try paid ads. Or both.
Either way – content is your most important factor.
Producing regular, quality content and posting that content often across your channels, is a great place to start.
Sharing your content where appropriate (and where it’s allowed!) within Facebook groups, is also a great starter strategy to becoming known.
The important thing is that you lead with value to establish relationships with people – with an emphasis on sales, second.
For example, you might begin by writing a weekly blog post – posting it on your website, your socials and by sharing it to one or two groups, with one of these three aims:
- to inspire
- to educate
- to entertain.
The sales call to action is a minor part at the end of each article.
Once you’re in the habit of that, it’s time to think about setting up:
- an email marketing database
- a basic lead generation process
- a sales funnel that nurtures your leads and converts them into paying customers.
How you do this, will clearly depend on the type of business you run and what your preferences are.
And it can take plenty of trial and error, to figure out what works best for your audience.
Focus on the 3 M’s
Whether you’re starting out, or trouble shooting a problem that exists in your current business, chances are it WILL come down to looking into strengthening one or all of these three M’s – Mindset, Messaging & Marketing.
The better these three aspects are in your business – the more success you’ll start to see.