Here’s the thing about being an entrepreneur: it’s so incredibly easy for the days to go by.
You can lose yourself in the details of:
hustling on social media
life stuff that pops up
And before you know it, it’s the end of the first quarter and you aren’t entirely sure where you are.
And most likely you're wondering where the Frankincense did the first three months go.
Goals? What happened to them?
Clarity around your progress? How can you even make any when “all the things” are happening nonstop around you.
It makes you wanna shout: TURN DOWN THE NOISE PLEASE.
In other words, you're having trouble measuring whether you're making progress or whether you're still a little stagnant.
And that isn’t a good spot to be in because it means that even though you may be out there living your best and healthiest self with that unbelievable passion you have, IF you're trying to turn that passion into a profitable reality (you know, more than a hobby)...
(AKA trying to gain visibility, attract leads into a business you may be growing and converting them to customers)
… you can’t really definitively say what’s working and what isn’t. Not a fun spot to be in, babe.
That’s why I’m highlighting three areas of focus so you can take the pulse of your biz and decide what - if anything - needs to be readjusted.
And hey, if you don't have a business yet, no biggie. Listen up because if you're ever ready to launch your own, you’ll have the perfect strategy.
Focus Area 1: The Basics
And by “the basics” I mean: going back to figuring out who your perfect customer is, the actual product or service you sell, and what your real life customer actually buys… or doesn’t buy.
To do this, you’ll need to start with what’s been selling.
What is your current customer spending her money on?
Is it what you thought she’d be buying?
Ah ha moment... Do you even know what she is spending her money on?
There are 2 reasons this is important:
It shows you what’s already working in your niche, which means it reveals where there are opportunities to scale.
It helps you refind your idea of who your perfect customer is and what she cares about.
Maybe you thought she was super into something like meal planning… but then you find out your customers have never bought anything related to meal plans from you.
This is your clue that you need to focus on what’s actually working.
Here’s one extra consideration - if you’re making zero sales or your sales are not enough to generate a profit, then you’ll need to spend time looking at two things:
First, your actual product and service… Are you talking about them in a way where your ideal customer sees the transformation she can have by using them?
And is what you are saying clear and understandable?
If not, you’ll have to start tweaking your messaging.
It’s possible you’ve been a little off base up until now.
Again, totally fine. It’s never too late to dive or dig a little deeper into her motivations, aspirations and pain points.
This isn’t a place to gloss over details, babe.
Focus Area 2: Pretend To Be Your Own Customer
This is the FUN part!
Or maybe it sounds kinda funny, right? But it’s necessary.
Here’s what I mean:
I want you to go to your website (if you don’t have one yet, ask yourself what you’d like to see and what path you’d like to take) and pretend you’re a first time visitor.
Do your best to completely remove all bias.
Literally imagine you’re seeing this for the first time.
What’s happening there? Use these points to help you analyze:
Is it obvious to a new visitor (that’s you right now) what you’re expected to know or do?
Is your website menu navigation confusing?
Does the imagery and aesthetic seem to mesh well and convey what you do?
Really comb through your site and see where the clicks take you.
And again if you don’t have a site, run through a few sites of people you are attracted to and see where they take you and if it’s clear.
Heck, run through mine (hayleyhobson.com) if you’d like and give me your feedback. I`m always perfecting it. Seriously. Like every few months. Trying to get it even more simple and clear and dialed in.
Ideally, in no more than 2 to 3 clicks, a lead or prospect should have an opportunity to take an action: that could be signing up for your email list, booking a call, or filling out a form for more information.
Really do your best to imagine what this experience is like for your ideal customer.
Chances are you’ll realize a thing or two you can make more clear, or adjust.
And if you’re really stuck on this, ask a trusted friend who is similar to your ideal customer to do this exercise for you.
Focus Area 3: Where are you in your journey?
I think it can be way too easy for entrepreneurs to get comfortable where they are and decide they’ve learned “it all”.
That’s a dangerous place to be because the truth is in the world of online entrepreneurship - yes, that’s where we are right now
(even though you may prefer, like me to be laughing at episodes of Seinfeld where they literally couldn’t find each other as they headed to the movies because there were no cell phones and no way to be in touch)
… things are always changing.
Are you staying relevant by investing in your education?
I don’t even necessarily mean spending money on yourself to learn more things. This can be as simple as joining a Facebook group of fellow entrepreneurs and using it to bounce ideas off each other.
Or it could mean subscribing to email newsletters from coaches or trainers or thought leaders you admire.
Whatever you decide, ensure this area of your entrepreneurial life isn’t getting overlooked because it truly becomes one of the very things that can set you apart from those who don’t invest in their ongoing learning.
If you’re extra stuck on how or where to begin with this, then I’ve got a quick win for you because Marie Forleo has two free videos that will help you with this entire exercise.
Her videos are designed to help you understand, foundationally, what needs to be in place for you to launch the business of your dreams or help your existing business succeed.
Between these two videos it’s like you’re getting a free mini masterclass on biz tips from the B-School master herself.
Also, in true Marie style, she gives you a couple free downloads that complement the videos … which means at the end Marie will have walked you through core business concepts and helped you apply them in your own life.
And until then choose at least one area from above and work on it today.