Now, I imagine in business, this is what lead generation might feel like for you. You might feel like you’re a big wave surfer and you’re surfing at the very peak of the wave and you feel like you’re on top of the world, because you’ve got a couple of referrals that have come through. You put your head down and you start doing the work. Then, before you know it, you’re absolutely wiped out. You’re at the bottom of that wave and you’ve got no work on and you have no idea how the hell you’re going to get out of this barrel of fun and actually get back and on top of your business. If this feels familiar, then my condolences to you, but we’re going to fix that. We’re going to give you a system to fix that for you today.
Everything that I share with you today is actionable. There’s the four-step process, which is right at the end, and it’s so simple. Honestly, the more simple that you make your business, the more profitable you’re going to be, the easier it is for you to deliver, the easier it is for you to actually hire staff, the easier it is for your customers to even understand what the hell it is that you do. I always tell stories of how people are in business and you have no idea what they do, because they’re so busy doing so many things. Once you get super simple, then it’s much easier to spread your message.
Word of Mouth Businesses
First things first is, word of mouth, it absolutely sucks. Now, I remember running a word-of-mouth business. In fact, I was in a BNI, and that was the entire premise of that networking, let’s say, “sales meeting”. Oof, gosh. Sales meeting, really? It was a word-of-mouth referral business where businesses would come together and we would talk about our business every single week and we would hope to get referrals. The referrals were pretty horrible because no one really knew what you did and the leads were not very good. Word-of-mouth business means that you’re actually just running a backseat business, and nothing good happens from the back seat. Telltale signs that you’re running a backseat business might be the fact that you get leads that come into your business and they’re always different, and they may be always a different type of customer or a different kind of client.
You probably don’t have the staff member ready to deliver the thing that someone’s asked you to do. Those type of leads are not leads that are part of a system and a process that basically comes in your business and out your business to deliver. I always talk about McDonald’s and I will get busy drawing in a little bit, but the simpler that your business can be, the better your business is going to be. In fact, when you do run a very niche, you-know-your-vertical kind of business, then you are in the driver’s seat and you are fanging around that race course, because you know exactly what you need to do. You’ve got leads coming into your business and you’re actually in the driver’s seat. You feel very powerful, you might say.
A Typical Day
This is a typical day that you might be making. There’s eight or nine hours, worth of your time, potentially every single day, that you might be working on your business. You might be actually putting more time than that, possibly. You might start in the morning and do some logo design, then move to some website design. Then you might move to looking at plugins or doing your accounts. You might spend two hours, maybe, working on your business, maybe. Then, you get some phone calls come in and you go and answer those questions from people just wanting your expertise because, obviously, you’re an expert in your field. You then might go to a meeting. I mean, by the end of the day, there’s only so many hours in every single day. When you deliver different things every single hour, this is what your day looks like.
In Singapore, I shared a really good analogy of doing a thousand things or signing up to the Olympics and wanting to win a gold medal for the 100-meter sprint or a marathon or, the long jump or the high-jump. If you can imagine, if you really wanted to win a gold medal and you spent 9:00 to 10:00 practicing for the sprinting event, and then 10:00 to 11:00 practicing long jump, and then 11:00 to 12:00 practicing the high jump, I think you follow the analogy now, but that’s basically the same as running a business that does everything. You just get your foot in and you start doing a little bit of work and then, next thing you know, you’re jumping out, you’re doing something completely different. The easiest way and the most profitable way to run any business is to actually do one thing really well.
Now, what I mean by one thing is, you don’t have to just offer one thing, but you want to lean in with one core offer, one offer that you know can deliver. 10 out of 10, there’s a process written. There’s someone there that can actually do the work for you because, you as the business owner shouldn’t actually be doing the work. You should be out there talking, being on stage or producing YouTube video content or writing articles or putting a podcast together or whatever it is that’s going to amplify your authority. You should not be actually in there doing the work. My promise to you is that, if you actually get super simple and just work on one thing, you’re going to be so much more profitable for your own business and things will actually start to speed up. Things will actually start to work again because, everything is just so damn simple.
Now, let’s really get into the nitty gritty of this, and let’s give you some actual examples of how you could showcase your business or where I see most website marketers, designers and WordPress’s go wrong. I simply Googled, ‘Sydney website designer’, and this guy came up first in the SEO. Good on Jimmyweb. The key thing I want to point out here is the fact that the services tab is so full of offers. Now, can you imagine as a customer, you just want to sell something online. You’ve got some racing tape and you need a website for it, so that you can share it with your community and give that community the awesome product and, obviously make some money in the meantime.
You’re like, “Oh yeah, it’s e-commerce.” Then, you’re like, “Online shop design, Shopify, WooCommerce, Magento, Sell Digital Downloads.” I don’t know where that sits with me because, again, remember we’re talking to our customers, we’re not talking to our peers who know what selling digital downloads might be or what an online shop design is. I mean, is that just when you just design the shop, because I think, as a business owner, I’m probably going to need both. I think I need a designer and a developer to do these things. I’m not really sure, so when a big tab like this comes in and, any of my coaching clients, this is the structure that they’ve currently got, we want to whip this into shape and just completely remove it. Because, honestly, as a customer, where is the next logical step?
Think about it, and think about your website and what you’ve got. Is this something similar to what you’ve got? Are you, literally, showcasing every single little thing, handbag, shopping, jewelry and furniture and travel and fashion and website design? There is a massive list there. Now, instead, this is a great example because it’s bloody working. It’s absolutely, what do you say, dialed in and generating leads for my team, and it’s fantastic. What we’ve basically done here is we’ve gone home, so standard home page, and then we’ve gone straight into our sales offering, which is the Tradie Xcelerate System. You can’t see that the web design tab and the logo design tab and all that sort of stuff, because we simply lean in on a core product that we are offering to our ideal client.
We’ve literally added a photo of our ideal client there in it too, they can see themselves. We’ve also really tried to speak directly to them, ‘Attention tradies who are ready to be the superhero of their local community, dominate your local area with the Tradie Xcelerate System’. These guys, Jimmyweb, what his homepage actually says is, “Jimmyweb, Sydney website design.” I mean, there’s an awesome video of Sydney and maybe Bondi Beach and all this sort of stuff. A boutique Sydney web development agency. It’s like, where do you talk to your exact customer? Where do you tell them their pain point? Where do you connect with them with their pain point?
Where do you clearly call them out and make sure that they feel comfortable and they’re in the exact right place? One other thing to point out here is that, we’ve actually named our core product, so we’re not calling it SEO or website design, or any of those other things that you might find on the Jimmy website, we actually call it the ‘Tradie Xcelerate System’. We do that because, nobody else can offer this system, so it’s a one of a kind. You can only come to this office to get to buy this service. Now, I’d love for you to create something like this for your business, so think about the product that you offer again and again and again, and it’s super profitable, it’s very easy to deliver, because you have a team behind you or you have a process that you can at least hand over to a team member.
Are you the CEO of Your Business or the Workhorse?
I always talk team because you as the CEO, you as the lady boss or man boss, you shouldn’t be in there in the back of the tools. I know it might sound a bit gut wrenching to think that you’re really good at this, but being a business owner is about leveraging your time and there’s only so much time that you have to do the thing. That’s why you even started a business in the first place. You might’ve started the business to have more time, more freedom, to go surfing, to hang out with the kids or whatever it like, so it’s really important that you do start to consider yourself as a business owner, like a business investor rather than a business doer. Because, I mean, time is the most precious thing that we’ve got here.
3 Common Reasons Why Marketers Don’t Niche
Let’s jump into three reasons why most marketers don’t bother to niche. The first thing first is really that you’ll lose opportunities. Now, when I tell marketers like yourself that you need to pick a niche and stick to it, one of the biggest points that they bring up is the fact that … whoa, I thank you, is the fact that I might actually lose customers. It’s that fear that, well, right now I’m working with accountants and financial planners and yoga studios and plumbers and all this sort of stuff, and if I actually just close all my doors and only work with dentists, there’s not going to be very much work out there, but I’d like to do as simple sum. If you want to earn, 1 million bucks in a year, you only need $86,000 worth of sales every single month.
$86,000 could be eight clients paying you 10 grand a month, eight clients. Can you imagine how many clients you’ve got right now, and if you just had eight on a retainer paying your 10 grand, you would be making $86,000 a month, which would equal $1 million a year. Imagine what you could do with your time and your family with that sort of freedom. Even if it’s not $10k, if it’s $5k , but you’ve got 16 clients, imagine only having sub 20 clients in your business. The point I’m making here is, there is definitely 20 dentists in this local Sydney area that you could work with. There are 20 dentists in Melbourne, there are 20 dentists in Perth, who’s not to say that you don’t go Australia-wide or America, California. I mean, my God, how many dentists would be just in LA?
It’s crazy, there is so much opportunity. It’s just a mindset thing. I want you to really try and clear your head and say, “No, my business will not go down the gurgler. I will actually be putting a beacon of light out for my business because, people will finally be able to understand exactly what I do and they will know that they’ve come to the right place because, the marketing will tell them,” so very important there. The second point there, again, is most common, is that I don’t know which niche to pick. Inaction stops most people from moving forward, and then you go back to your email and you might find that there’s a bunch of quotes there and they’re all different kinds of things and you just keep yourself really busy because, if you’re busy, then you must be making money….
Really, you don’t need to marry your niche, you just need to date your niche. Now, if you think about Tinder, you just want to start swiping left and right on different niches until you find the right one. That analogy went down really well in Singapore, but yeah, you just want to try a niche for 90 days. Seriously, 90 days, just three months. I want you to pick someone that you might have some sort of passion or like, or that you’ve done it before, and then just jump in and start doing some work with them. Now, another big question that I want to debunk here is that, do you have to build an entire new website for this niche, and that’s going to take more than 90 days and all this sort of stuff?
Now, if you can actually build a website in a week, like we just did for our brand new niche, then do that, but if it’s going to take you months on end to deliver a brand new website, don’t build a brand new website, just put a sales page on your website. Put the photos of the person that you actually want to attract and just start digging in there and, basically, go for it. Again, you don’t have to marry your niche. There is no, “Let’s get married,” R&B playing in the background here. Basically, you just want to date your niche and get to know them a little bit better and start working with them and see if you actually enjoy working with them. If you don’t, well, then you just change. You just move on. You just pick a new niche in 90 days. The reality is that, every niche works and most niches have the funds to pay for what you want to do.
Top and Bottom of the Market
With every niche comes the dollar. There’s always a bottom of the market and there’s a top of the market, so you want to make sure that your marketing shows exactly where you want to stand. If you’re doing some really super fast, quick stuff, that you can get out really quickly and you can fully systemize it and you’re happy to do it for two grand, then by all means do that because, as long as it’s profitable, it doesn’t matter what the cost is. If you want to stick to the more 10, 20, 30, 40, $100,000 jobs, then do that. It’s up to you. It’s your business, every niche has the top of the market and the bottom of the market.
I Love a Challenge
The last point here I wanted to make is that, “Oh, but I like the variety. I like the challenge.” Actually, someone said this to me in Singapore, “I really like the challenge of working on big, meaty projects, and I like the challenge that they provide me. That way, I don’t get bored.” To be honest and to talk from my own experience, if your team is delivering the most exceptional work for your customers and you don’t have to be in the office every day, I can think of a thousand things to do, so that I don’t get bored. Working with a variety of people actually means that, when you start work that morning, you might actually, again, start working with accountants and you’re talking about SMSFs and, gosh, payroll and, are they getting their CPA, and do I need to update that logo for Quicken or Xero…
Then, you jump into a hair and beauty, a beauty salon and you’re talking about haircuts and color and all this sort of stuff, and you’re really splitting it down. Like, if we go back to that previous diagram, you’re really splitting your day between all these different types of brain zones, really. You want to get super simple and you want to just do one thing again and again and again. Now, what actually happens when you actually have a process in place and, you what do you say, you’re well known in the industry, what happens is you go from an unwanted pest to a welcomed guest. When you’re, again, Jimmyweb, love your website, but if you’re in so many different niches and you’re offering so many different things and you’re cold calling and offering so many different things, you’re being unwanted pest.
Outbound Cold Calling Sucks
If you’re stuck doing all these outbound calls for lead gen because no one really knows what you’re doing and not just organically coming into your business. Now, when you actually just do one thing and one thing really well and it’s really clear and it’s obvious exactly what you do and it’s obvious of the outcome that you provide, then what you start to build is trust. You also start to become a welcomed guest. You’re like, “Oh my God. Jude, she totally knows everything about dentistry and I’d love to have a chat with her because she doesn’t shut up about dentistry. I love talking about dentistry because I’m a dentist.” Getting really deep in that niche actually really helps you build trust with the market, and it really helps you point out. I always say create a beacon of light.
Back to the Future
This is me back in 2013. In 2013, I niched, I was running Summit Web Design, it was called back then and I thought, “I really need to niche. I really need a differentiating point in the marketplace here.” So, I built Tradies Get Online and like I do, I rip the bandaid off and I get it and I’m pretty quick, but you can even see here my core mistake that I made and what I don’t want you to make here is the fact that even though I niched into the vertical, I actually still was doing everything. Websites, online marketing, SEO, social media, email marketing, logos. We were offering even an email there, there’s a sign up there for Gsuite. So, although we got deep in the niche, we actually got really wide in our service offering.
What I’ve tweaked and done since 2013, hopefully, I’ve changed something in the business, is we actually just offer that one core service. We lean in with our ‘Tradie Xcelerate System’. We actually called it something, I would love for you to pick a niche and to call your core service something because, it simply means that nobody else can actually offer what you do because you’re the only one that’s doing it. You’re the only one that’s got the Dental Dominator package. If you need help with a name, by all means jump into the Facebook group and ask me.
Here are some real key points that I want you to take away when picking a niche. First things first is, you want to pick a niche that is already in motion, so they’re actually aware that someone like you exists and someone like you would be really beneficial for their business.
You don’t want to talk to people who have no idea why you would need a website, let’s say, or why you would need social media services, or why you might need marketing services, or why you might need pay-per-click or, what is pay-per-click? It’s really quite a much longer difficult conversation to have with someone who has no idea what you’re talking about. Like, when you get a toothache, you know instantly, you need to go to the dentist. If you’re hanging around eating lollies and nothing’s going on, and someone says, “Oh, you should go to the dentist,” you go, “What for?” Think about that. If you have a toothache, you are aware and you’re in motion, because you are walking around the city thinking, “My God, that toothache is killing me. I need to do something about it,” and the dentist is collects that lead.
But if you’re seriously just sitting there eating lollies and you don’t have a toothache, and someone says, “You should go to the dentist,” why would you go? So, you really want to get someone that is in motion. I like to describe this as, you really want to feed tacos to someone who is super hungry. Feed a starving crowd with something delicious. Okay. The next point here I want to make is the fact that they need to have pain and urgency. You’re looking for niche businesses that, again, know that they need someone like you to come into their business. For example, and we’ll use this as a great example, the beauty niche. A beautician, I’m thinking of one down the road, she does eyebrows and, gosh, facials and neck massages and pedicures, manicures, all this sort of stuff.
Pain and Urgency
Now, if she is sitting in her clinic waiting for clients to come in, she’s got another lady there who’s also on call, because you can’t, potentially, be by yourself in the clinic, you’re sitting there and just waiting for clients to come in. Now, that is a perfect example of pain and urgency. There is a massive pain that that business owner is going through, because they’re literally sitting in their office waiting for someone to walk in and ask, “How much for a brow clean up?” Or wax, let’s say. It’s urgent. It then becomes, also, urgent once there is a pain that is active, let’s say. It then becomes urgent, let me get another drink, it becomes urgent because, the business owner would know that there’s only so many days they can take like this and the business is going to start to go down the drain.
We’re going to be low on cash flow and things … I might not be able to pay my wages. This is an urgent issue. If you think about niches that you may have worked with, target audience you might worked with before, think about, have they got an obvious pain and some urgency? What are their pain points and what pain point would tick that over and make it just urgent, like absolutely urgent? I think about that. A really good point here that I really worked on was the power of community. You want to make sure that. Well, it’s a bonus if your niche is actually a part of a community. With the trades sector, I mean, there’s master builders, there’s master plumbers, there’s master electricians.
If I was doing marketing work for electricians, I could literally go and join master electricians. I could go to the local events, I could start to meet my clients. I could start to talk about their pain and their urgency and what they may be suffering from and start to put, really, my core offering together. Really think about, is there a community that I can attach myself to a here so that, rather than just working one on one with people, I can actually work with an entire group, or I might be able to actually grab a mailing list? Oh, I did that with the trades niche 2013. Every single event that I went to, there was an opportunity for me to take an entire marketing list home. Every event gave me 500 emails every single time, so that was very fruitful for me.
I want to give you some clarity on what you’re suffering from right now. If we don’t actually stop and think about who we want to attract or work with we end up working with anyone. Ask yourself, What could we achieve if we only kept A Class Clients? Then, repeat this for me – I deserve to work with the best clients.
Go here and download the A Class Client Worksheet. What we’ve got here is a quadrant and we’ve got A client’s for Awesome and B clients for Basic, C clients for, I Can’t Deal and D for Dogs. D for dogs sounds really rough, but in some cases, it’s quite true. I actually did this exercise in November and, at the time, I had a client that I dearly loved, but I didn’t realize how much time they were actually sucking from me, and they were super sweet but, eventually, I realized that they actually were down in here. They were D for dogs or C, I can’t deal with. Ouch.
Now, here’s a few of the reasons why they became that kind of client. I mean, for me, an awesome client is someone who is respectful and they pay on time. That’s a big one. We also put everything through credit card, so they humbly accept that. The basic clients might also pay on time, but they don’t use that credit card feature that we love because, it speeds up a debt collecting. Yeah. It’s a massive issue in everyone’s business – if you let it.
Anyway, you can sort of see where I’m going here. The B is, they turn up on time. These guys are always late or they don’t turn up. They’ll call me half an hour before the meeting and say “Look, I’m so sorry, I can’t do this.”
Oh my God, I just had a flashback to a customer that made me wait in his surgery for 30 minutes. He told me that I needed to be there at 9:00am on the dot, and then he made me wait for 30 minutes. Well, guess what, at 10:00am on the dot, I walked out, because it was a 60-minute meeting and when I did that, he was like, “What do you mean? Where are you going?” I’m like, “Well, I was here at 9:00 and it’s now 10:00 and I need to move on.”
Yeah, clearly he was a D. If I had done this exercise much sooner, I would have realized, and I would have fired him a lot sooner, so I would love for you to do this exercise. There’s also a little point here on the left helping you identify what a brilliant client looks like.
- Is there one core communicator? (this was a big point one that came up in the coaching call the other day. A brand new client came on board, there’s one communicator
- They actually have a plan.
- They might actually have a budget.
- They follow the bouncing ball, and do their homework.
- They actually fill out your intake form.
If you take a moment and fill this out and really consider what kind of business you want to be doing in the future, I mean, anything that you want to do, basically, if you stopped doing the things that you used to do and you just start doing what you want to actually do, then you will move much further into where you actually want to be much sooner.
I always have a poster on my computer here that says, “Talk in future Steph language. Leave past Steph in the past.” I’ve done a lot of things in my life, in my business life, and to really transition and move forward, I need to start thinking about what future Steph should and wants to do and leave past Steph behind. I hope that really resonates with you guys.
Simplify Your Business
If we draw a straight line here, and this is a like a plateauing line, really. It’s a plateauing line of your business, if we draw our line on top of that and it’s actually going up, woo-hoo, and then we draw a line underneath the plateauing line.
This one is actually curving towards the down. In business, if you just simply build products and continue to plateau, I mean, there’s only really two things in business that you’re doing. You’re either thriving, T for thriving, or you’re S for surviving. In fact, when you’re plateauing, it actually gets quite boring, and cashflow start to be an issue here. You can’t really move anywhere. You can’t even really get any more time back. You can’t really hire any more team. You’re really just sort of sitting here coasting, so to speak, and you wish that things could be better.
When you actually start to jump onto this curved line up here, what you’re doing is delivering the same damn thing. I’ve drawn a few boxes on my diagram above – T.X. is for the Tradies Xcelerate System example. Or the D.D., the Dental Dominator, which I just made up, which I’m sure you guys can steal if that wants to be your niche. When you deliver the same damn thing every single week, you get super profitable because the onboarding processes is exactly the same. The client comes in, they might do the intake form. They then get your first email, then they get your second. You can really systemize the hell out of someone coming through and flowing straight into your business.
When you’re doing different things like the downward arrow here, then it’s … and I know I like to use this like a fast food chain, almost. You’re making fries, you’ve got a taco here that you’re now delivering. You’ve got a margarita that you need to deliver. You’ve got a bowl of salad with the tomato and some celery and all this kind of stuff. The energy that it takes to put fries together, to put a taco together, to put a margarita together and to put a salad together, the tools to put those things together too are all completely different. I love to use food as an example, because it’s so visual and everyone, well, mostly everyone, eats food. Everyone can understand, when you’re doing everything you start to move into survival mode, because you’ve got so many things going on at once and they’re all so different and it’s very hard to track.
When you’re in that thriving mode and you’re just delivering the same damn thing every single day, it gets much easier, because it’s just the same thing. It’s the same thing coming in day in, day out. I really love that analogy.
Traffic is the Last Thing
When we think about running a business, we might think that, “Oh, if only I had some more leads.” I mean, you can buy traffic. You can push as many eyeballs to your website as you wish. You can use Google Ads, you can get SEO-ed. Gosh, you can use Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads, Pinterest Ads. I mean, there are so many formats of paid traffic these days. It’s a brilliant time to be in business.
If it’s not traffic that’s the issue here, then what might be it? The four-step process here is as simple as this, problem, solution, package and market. What is the biggest problem that your niche has right now? What is really leaving them behind? Is it leads? Do they not have enough leads coming into their business? Do they have a shocking website that actually looks really horrible and no one will come for dinner, because there’s no photos of the food, the restaurant, let’s say? What is the core problem of your niche?
What is the solution that you can provide those people in the most simple fact? Dental dominator, we just made that up today. If someone could seriously just go own the dental niche and just become that one person that’s in the dental niche and absolutely killing it, because they’ve got the Dental Dominator program, go for it. But knowing someone’s problem and showing them the solution, that’s what you want to do time and time again. A lot of people actually work on their portfolio. I want you to throw your portfolio out. Holy cow, did she just say that? No, I do. I want you to throw your portfolio out, because it doesn’t matter. Because when people actually are asking, “Oh, do you have any examples of the work that you’ve done?” What they’re actually telling you is they’re not sure of what you’re offering. They’re not sure of the value of it.
They’re just not really sure what you do, but when you talk about the solution to their problem, all those portfolio examples, “I want to see referrals, testimonials,” all those things go away because you are talking their language. You know and you have stated that you understand that there are people out there with a toothache and they need to find you as quickly as possible. You’re open 24/7, you can fix anything, so you connect that solution with their problem and they get extremely excited and happy.
Package it up.
Call it something. Stop calling your work website design, or SEO services, or per click, or whatever. Actually, brand it and give it a name. That’s the fastest way to inject yourself as the hero or the leader of the niche. Package it up, and use unique terminology. “The Dental Dominator drives more patients into our dentists’ clinics. Is that something that would make you happy?” Oh my God, yes. That comes down to marketing. Talk about your core product a thousand times over because, again, when you’re talking about one thing, it’s really easy for your niche or your customer to understand exactly what you do.
Again, if we go back to Jimmyweb, what does that guy even do? He does a whole range of things. He’s not really a specialist. He’s just happy to take any lead possible here. I mean, if that’s working, awesome. Good for you, but most clients succeed because they’ve actually picked a niche. They’ve actually picked a niche and they’re sticking with it.
Need more help?
I’ve got a freebie you can download ‘300 Brilliant Niche Markets That You Can Dive Into’. I hand picked these and the team have put this beautiful freebie together. If you’re thinking about going into a niche and you just have no idea, or you just want to open a book, close your eyes, use a pen, drop it on the page and whatever it lands on, that’s your niche for the next 90 days. This is a great way to start that new business of yours. Yeah, feel free to go and grab this one, but I really do hope that you pick a niche and you go for it because, honestly, picking a niche is the fastest way to success.
Simply For Step Process
This is all you need to do. It’s just four steps. Understand their problem, provide the solution, package it up, give it a name. Don’t call it the same crap that everyone else is calling it. Be different in the market, so that you can turn that light bulb on. The last piece there is to market it. Market it like crazy.
All righty! I hope this is helpful. As always, thank you so much. This is the Stephanator and I’m signing off.