I do a lot of coaching work with solo-preneurs and small business owners and the questions I get time and again go something like this:
"How do I stop this "Feast or Famine" cycle and earn a consistent income?"
"All the revenue I earn goes straight back into the business to pay the bills. How do I make money AND afford to pay myself?"
"I know X and she's not as good as I am, but her business seems to be growing faster than mine. Why is that?"
If you have been asking any variation of these questions, and just don’t seem to be able to find a solution, keep reading. I’m going to share with you the 5 steps I’ve personally used to grow my businesses from $0 to over 6 figures in less than 12 months.
Step 1: Planning
The first step in building a multiple figure business is to sit down and work out exactly who your customer is and what products or services you can provide that solves their problem.
Then you can calculate how many units of each product or service you need to sell in order to achieve your annual revenue goal. The calculation looks like this:
When you start playing with these variables that’s when you’ll know if you need to create more offers, change the price or ramp up your marketing to sell more. Of course, this revenue calculation assumes your pricing is generating profit, if it’s not, then re-calculating your pricing is an action item for your “To Do Today” list.
Step 2: Branding
If you want to earn more and be a 6 or 7 figure business, you need to create a strong 6+ figure brand that permeates everything you do, from the way you respond to customers to the type font on your business cards. Whenever you create or change anything in your business perform “The 4 C’s Check” before you release it.
Ask yourself, is what I’m about to promote to my customers:
If it doesn’t pass “The 4 C’s Check” keep working on it. Standards are a tool that will consistently elevate your business, WOW your customers and crush your competition.
Step 3: Automating
There are many activities that we perform on a daily basis to keep a business humming along. From posting to social media, responding to customer queries and managing finances, all of these activities are what I call “survival tactics”. These are tasks we must do for our business to survive but they don’t create big leaps in growth. Others refer to this as “Working IN your business instead of ON your business”.
If you’re caught in a “feast or famine cycle” or you just don’t seem to be able to pass a certain revenue figure, it’s likely you’re preoccupied with survival tactics. It’s time to loosen the reins and automate or outsource these activities. If you’re an entrepreneur who believes no one else can do the job as well as you, I’m going to be blunt, “Get over yourself”. If that notion were true, no business would ever grow beyond the size of a “Mom and Pop Shop”.
Step 4: Thriving
The reason for automating the survival tactics is to free up both your time and energy to focus on strategies that create massive impact in your business. These big levers are different for every business but are common in outcome. They create big spikes in your business metrics and result in exponential growth. Examples include tradeshows, speaking events and launching innovative new products. You need big levers to catapult your business to the next level.
Step 5: Optimizing
Try out new ways of operating, test new marketing strategies, hire and fire employees but most importantly, keep moving. In taking action we create a natural momentum that inspires and opens up unimaginable opportunities. If something doesn’t work out, forgive your mistake, pick yourself up and try something new. Like an Olympic hurdler, you should expect obstacles in your path. Deal with them like a pro, keep your head up, stay nimble and, most importantly, keep moving forward.
As always, I'd love to hear from you. What stage are you at in your business?
Tell me in the comments below your best business advice. What's worked, what hasn't, what are you struggling with or what do you think every entrepreneur should know.
Wishing you every success in business & life.