Who is your ideal client?

Many times when a person decides to start a business, they never think about their ideal clients. I mean really think about them and write out the characteristics of them. You tend to focus on starting a facebook page, having a pretty logo and starting to sell. And when you have done all of this and then get no sales, there is a huge uproar. One of the reasons, (and by no means is this the only reason) you are getting no sales is because you are trying to sell to EVERYBODY even though everybody does not need or want what you are selling. You have this false belief that your product/service is so great that everybody will rush to purchase. This is so false and actually many business close after 1 year in business not because their product/service was horrible but simply because they did not take the time to fine tune who they wanted to serve.

What is an ideal client?

An ideal client is that person who needs what you have. They do not question your price and they are seeking out a solution for a problem and they know you can solve their problem. Your ideal client is a sweetheart and sometimes called a soul mate client because they understand and appreciate your product or service. They also recommend you to others and give you glowing testimonials all the time. Sometimes they do not even realise they need you until they have used your product/service but once they do there is no turning back. An ideal client buys from you over and over and over again! Sounds perfect right?

But why is it important to find them?

Once you know who your ideal client is, it is sooo much easier to share value and sell everyday. They want to soak up the information that you are sharing. Knowing your ideal client means you speak directly to a person who wants to buy from you. They know, like and trust you and they become your brand ambassadors. Knowing them also means that you save time, money and resources. It also means that your marketing and sales efforts are more focused and fine tuned so you can sell more and work less (almost ideal!)

ask questions- jonathan-simcoe-88013

But where do I find them?

This is the part where the ball drops. You have to go looking for them. You have to ask around. You have to look at the people who have bought from you before or who are buying similar products and services to yours. You have to pay close attention to what people are saying and consuming in the industry. Most coaches and marketing gurus will give you a simple exercise to complete which speaks specifically to the demographic of your ideal client. For example,

  1. Are they married, single, divorced or widowed?
  2. Are they male or female?
  3. Do they have children and how many?
  4. What is their household income?
  5. What is their disposable income?

These questions really tackle the basic information about your client. And they are important because a single woman spends money differently and her priorities are different to a married woman with 3 children. You have to identify these basic qualities so you can understand what is important to them and why they buy.

In addition, you look at where they live, where they spend their time both online and offline, the brands they follow and the people who they consider influencers. Why? Because you need to be wherever they are everyday!

But a great sales person needs to know about the emotional parts of their clients. What makes them tick? What keeps them up at night? What can’t they live without? How do you find these answers? You simply ask people who have bought from you; who have expressed interest in your product or service or who you know need what you have to offer!

What do I do when I find them?

When you have narrowed down exactly who needs you and how they need you then you start to share value. You pay close attention to the language they use when they are speaking about the problem they are experiencing. You talk directly to them about their problems using the exact words they use (psychology of selling!) and share how you can help them sleep better at night. Give value everyday and ask for the sale.

Where do I start?

Start by writing it out. Get it out of your head and write out the exact features of your ideal clients until you have created a persona that you can actually visualize. It helps to also give your ideal client avatar a name. But remember, you can also have more than 1 ideal client based on where they are in your buyers journey. So keep plotting away until you narrow down exactly who they are and how you are helping them. In a previous post- Stop Living in a Ghost Town I shared some useful tips about how to engage your ideal clients consistently.

And if you still need help, then contact me for a FREE 30 minute consultation and let’s get to work identifying your ideal client.

 

 

 

 

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Who do I collaborate with?

Collaborations are all the rave now. Why? Because we are realizing more and more that you do not have to grow your business alone. According to the Business Dictionary, a collaboration is ‘Cooperative arrangement in which two or more parties (which may or may not have any previous relationship) work jointly towards a common goal.’

There are millions of people who want to buy from you  and a great way to get in front of them is to collaborate with somebody who has the same ideal client but is offering a complimentary service. Examples include hairdressers and nail techs, bakers and event planners to name just a few, but many times it does not work out as we expected. There is a reason we are getting collaborations wrong and I want to walk you through how to make it work

1. When you are not clear about what the collaborations looks like

This is the most common mistake. Time and time again I see entrepreneurs announce that they want to collaborate with other business owners but they are not clear about how the collaboration will look or feel. They do not have a clear understanding of who will be doing the work and the expected outcome.

There is the belief that once the next entrepreneur has clients and is offering a complimentary service then they are the best persons to collaborate with. The truth is, if you are looking for someone to collaborate with, you need to do your homework. Some questions to consider are

  • who are their ideal clients
  • how successful and busy are their own businesses
  • have they collaborated with anybody before
  • how visible are they
  • do their vision, mission and ethics in alignment with your business

Because so many entrepreneurs do not think about these questions they end up in disastrous collaborations and loose a ton of money, time and resources in the process.

contracts- olu-eletu-15018

2. You have no contract

One of the biggest mis-steps entrepreneurs make when going into any collaborative agreement. Even if it is a one page contract which identifies

  • what is the overall goal of the collaboration
  • each persons role in the collaboration,
  • how money will be spent and distributed,
  • how long the collaboration will be engaged,
  • how the success of the collaboration will be measured and
  • how will the collaboration be promoted!

Having no contract leaves your collaboration open to failure because expectations are not clearly defined.

3. Lack of communication

This is when the collaboration is finalised. Entrepreneurs tend to just walk away and expect things to fall into place. But actually this is when you have to keep in contact with your collaborator because as you start to promote the collaboration, things may have to be tweaked, twisted and turned to make sure you are really hitting your targets. It is not a drop it and they will come scenario. Keep lines of communication open throughout the life of the collaboration and decide what day and time of the week you will be checking in to give updates etc.

Collaborations are a great way to grow your business fast but like with anything else in business, it must be done with a strategic plan in mind and not willy nilly.

Do you have any successful collaboration stories? Or do you want help in deciding how to find someone to collaborate with? Post your comments below and let’s keep this conversation going!

Carlos Muza

4 ways to increase your revenue

Everybody wants to make money in their business right? Either that or they are running a charity. But making the money always seems to be the hard part for many entrepreneurs because we do not talk about money or understand how money works (but that is for another blog post!). There are some tried and tested ways to make more money in your business. I want to share with you just 4 ways:

1. Look at what you are offering and determine if the prices need to be raised. (Yes you will lose a few clients but you will gain better clients in the long run!) Do that immediately. Raising your prices means that you will attract higher paying clients who value what you are selling them. Do not get caught into the thinking that charging less will give you more clients. In fact the opposite is true. Raising your prices also means you may be able to work with less people and still earn the money you want.

2. What product or service are you presently offering that sells the most? Sell more of it by talking about it more, give your clients more info about it and get more people to buy it. It is your number 1 seller for a reason. This means you have to be very intune with your clientele and your inventory. The product that sells the most and flies off the shelf fastest is the one you should be producing the most of. If you make 100 soaps and they all sell out in 1 week and you have a line of people trying to buy more, then you need to make more soaps and sell more of it every week (raise your prices!)

3. Are you offering enough things? Meaning, are you selling more than 1 thing at a time? It is a myth that you should be selling 1 thing at a time. Sell as much as 2 or 3 things at a time so you have multiple streams coming in and you are not depending on just 1 sales. When you are running ads, sending out emails or doing videos, it is okay to sell more than 1 thing because your clients are at different stages of the buying process with you. Some need a low end product, some a mid range and some a high end. You should be selling all of them. They key is to know where to sell each one of these things. Once can be sold in your fb group, another via your email list and still another in collaboration with another entrepreneur. Do not depend on the sale of 1 thing to give you the revenue you desire.

4. Offer weekly or monthly package deals. So instead of a month by month sale, offer a 3 month package which they can pay over a period of time. That way you can guarantee money is coming in even 90 days from now. This works well especially for service providers like consultants. For hair dressers and nail techs for example ensure that your clients book their next appointments in advance so you are guaranteeing that you are always booked. If you sell a product, you know how long it lasts on average, so ensure that your strategy includes a follow up system so they buy another item from you before their last bottle is completed. And combine services or products. This way you get a larger revenue jump than if you were trying to sell each item individually.

Now that you have these 4 steps to take, let’s commit to implementing them in your business today!

Leave a comment below and tell me which one you plan to implement.

Stop making excuses!

As a coach I have heard it all, trust me. From:

  • I have no time
  • The kids were awake
  • I got sick
  • My laptop stopped working
  • I have no support
  • I just don’t know what to do
  • I feel overwhelmed
  • The dog ate my assignment

I have heard them all and while I know sometimes we have legitimate reasons why things cannot get done, many times, if we are totally honest with ourselves we know that we are making excuses.

Why do we make excuses?

Most times it is out of fear! We do not know what will happen if we actually do the work. We are afraid that if we put in the work and we do not get the outcome we want then we will be disappointed. Fear cripples you into not just making excuses but not doing anything at all. But my question is- What is the worst that could happen if you do nothing? You end in the exact same spot and nothing gets done and your business dream just withers away

Other times it is out of laziness! Yes laziness. People are lazy. Sometimes you are extremely lazy. Some days you feel like doing nothing at all, but if you feel like that every day then Houston we have a problem! Running a business is not for the faint of heart and neither is it for someone who chooses to be lazy because yes it is a choice.

What do excuses do to our business?

Excuses keep you back. They hold you back from success and it kills your motivation, drive and momentum. An excuse is any barrier you put up physically, mentally or emotionally that keeps you from completing what you set out to do.

What is the truth?

The truth is that you have more control than you think or more than you allow yourself to have. As humans, it is easy for us to complain and make excuses because that is where we are most comfortable. How do you combat your excuses?

  1. You set a plan or a goal and you stick to it, even when you are feeling lazy, down, demotivated or whatever you want to call it this week. The point is that you give yourself no excuses.
  2.  You get an accountability partner who will take no excuses what so ever
  3. You hire a coach ( Yes I am available!) who will help you develop the tools to keep you focused
  4. You develop daily practices like affirmations and journalling which get you in the best mindset everyday
  5. You commit to get things done no matter what!

Parents know the drill all too well with their kids. They have a million excuses why they should not go to bed on time; or do homework; or clean their rooms and as a strong parent you let them know that the rules are the rules and they have to do it no matter what. No excuses!!! So why don’t the same rules apply to you and your business?

Excuses are the things that hold us back. It is our comfort zone and in coach I always tell my clients get uncomfortable until you are comfortable…and then get uncomfortable again! Business is about growth and learning and going beyond where you thought possible for your business. That definitely will not happen if you keep coming up with excuses for why you are not

  • posting on your page
  • doing videos
  • making phone calls
  • attending networking events
  • collaborating
  • selling everyday
  • investing in new
  • writing your blog

So, tell me what excuse you are NOT going to make today and how we can work together to keep your momentum as you grow your business with NO excuses.

Let’s schedule a FREE discovery call to get started talking.

Why you should hire a coach

Coaching seems to be ‘in’ thing now. Everywhere you turn somebody is calling themselves a coach. Whether this is good or bad is up for debate but what is most important is why you should hire a coach. Let’s start off by distinguishing what a coach is and is not. A coach is a qualified person who guides you through a process to help you reach to an end goal. Whether it is personal or business, your coach should help you go through a process of analysis for you to get clarity on where you want to be and how you plan to get there and then work with you as you move closer to your end goal.

A coach is not a psychologist or a therapist and does not treat with personal or mental health issues and should in fact recommend you seek professional help if these are your underlying issues. Your coach also does not focus on your past but instead stares you forward into the future and gets you into action to get what you desire. A good coach will help you unleash the great potential that is lying asleep inside of you so that you can become a better version of yourself. Your coach does not and should not have all the answers but is there to ask you some hard burning and sometimes tough questions to allow you to seek out the answers and get the transformation that you are craving. Your coach should be your cheerleader and team support but should also know when to give you a solid shake up or wake up call when you are falling down a slippery slope.

Not all coaches are made equal and some of the best coaches have coaches because they understand the importance of continuous growth and transformation.

Why should you hire a coach?

Because if you are serious about building a business that you truly love, you know and understand that it cannot be done alone. You know that you need a team and support system so you can work smarter not harder and that having this team will allow you to grow even faster than if you were doing it alone.

I can attest to the fact that I have grown  my own coaching business so rapidly because I have had many coaches and mentors to guide me along the way. They have been able to share valuable information which allowed me to avoid many of the traps of entrepreneurship. My own coach helped me find my rhythm and my momentum and it is because of this support I am where I am today. But more than that, I also understand that the coaching relationship would not have worked if I did not put in the work we discussed or get uncomfortable until I got comfortable with all that I needed to do to become a successful coach in my niche. I spoke about this in one of my blogs in July 2016- How hiring a coach changed my life.

In your quest to find a coach, look for someone who resonates with your own value system. Someone who has experienced and surpassed where you are presently and someone who has proof that they have accomplished what they say they are trying to help you achieve. A true coach will be honest, open and authentic and will be in a constant state of learning right along with you. (Just maybe I am the right fit for you!)

You should hire a coach because the world of business is competitive and having someone in your corner who has already accomplished what you are now trying to achieve will help you avoid many pitfalls. A coach is not a friend or a ‘yes’ man but is a no none sense supporter who will show up and give you the low down when you most need it. Your coach is not an advisor but your like your sub conscious brain helping you to  uncover all the innate skills and talents you already have.

If you still have questions about how a coach can change your life and your business, feel free to hop on a FREE 30 minute discovery call and let’s discuss how coaching really works.

Thinking beyond our shores

So you launch your business idea and it is picking up momentum but after a few months you realise that you have plateaued and of course you automatically go into panic mode. You wonder if you are doing enough and if you can sustain your business. The usual feelings of anxiety and worry start to take over and then you pause, because you realise that maybe just maybe your vision is too small. Do not fear this happens to alot of entrepreneurs!

We are taught to believe that we need to think small. That when we launch we have to launch small and capture a small audience first. That we have to nurture them for a long time before we branch off into bigger territory but the truth is that once you have done the research and your business is viable there is no reason for you to stay hidden in the shores of your island or country where you reside.

There are millions of people around the world who are waiting to buy from you.

In fact I know some local entrepreneurs who get their greatest sales from overseas clients! This could be you to if only you would broaden your perspective and outlook on who really needs your services. You need a global mindset!

And it really does not matter what industry you are in, service or retail, there more than likely a market regionally and internationally for what you are providing. How would you know? Start by doing some research. Create a survey and send out to all your friends and family living away. Share the survey in groups or on your social media profile. Ask questions about exactly what they may be looking for and tailor your business to suit. Now it may mean that to handle the international shipping and handling of your business may take some work but it definitely is not impossible. Don’t you buy goods made from China and Europe everyday? Don’t you listen to webinars and buy short courses from persons from around the world? So why should you be any different?

me in tobago

For many Caribbean entrepreneurs, this is a big struggle. I understand it, because we have grown up in an era where foreign translates to ‘better’. But as more and more businesses are popping up and more persons are collaborating and seeing the potential for bigger and better things, it is your duty to share your skills, your talents and your vision with the rest of the world. It is more than just about the money. But it is about filling a need and a gap like no one else could. Putting your unique spin on your idea and taking charge of your vision to make it come to life.

It starts with shifting your mindset about the possibilities for your business. Once you believe that you can do it then jump in and do it. Get the research done, tweak your ideal client avatar and then start to engage with and build relationships with persons outside of your shores. Think regionally and internationally. In some cases, this is where your biggest sales may actually come in. And put a spin on it by targeting foreigners who visit our shores who you know need and want your service when they do visit. There are multiple ways for you to make your business successful internationally if only you would allow yourself the chance to actually do it.

Before you start with the excuses of why this would not work for your business, let’s hop on a FREE 30 minute discovery call so we can chat about exactly how it can actually work for you

The thing holding you back is you

The thing keeping you back from achieving exactly what you want is YOU! I know that may come as a shock to many people reading this but the truth is that if you would choose to get out of your own way, you would get so.much more accomplished everyday.
The usual stages of entrepreneurship is
1. Coming up with a great idea
2. Start complaining that you don’t have the money to fund it, or no support, or you just don’t know what to do.
Granted you may need help because you are not versed in social media, sales or developing a business or marketing plan, but with the age of technology, saying you do not know is basically a cop out. There are an onslaught of videos and tutorials literally teaching what to do step by step. Agencies have been formed worldwide with the sole purpose of helping you launch and grow your business. There are templates and swipe files littering the world wide web for you to steal and develop your own version. Not to mention the plethora of experts everywhere who are eager to show you how.
But instead of taking the time to shift through all the resources available at your fingertips, you sit and complain or created horrific scenarios in your head about the worse thing that could happen to you in business. You create a system of doubt and fear so deep that you do not know how to pull yourself out. YOU put up barriers to growth and sustainability and then blame it on the economy or the lack of something magnificent.
If you want success and to create a business that truly helps others then take a deep breath and step out of the way. Get out of your way. Tell your doubting complaining self to step aside while you get to work. When you take the reigns back then you are ready to move forward.
You do not need a huge budget to start. You do not need the support of family and friends (shocking!). You do not need to be the cheapest or the loudest. What you need is a goal, commitment, focus and consistency. Those 4 things are what you need everyday to succeed. Get into action everyday to grow your business bigger than the last day. To talk to 1 or 2 new persons per day. To stop hiding behind your computer. To get uncomfortable until you are comfortable. YOU have to make that choice every morning when you jump.out of bed to pursue this dream.
Things work when you put in the work. This align when you have a goal and a clear vision and do actionable steps to get you to where you want to be. You and only you have that power.
Are you ready to kick the old YOU to the curb and welcome the brand new reformed version of YOU who is ready to work and make things happen? And if you are really serious then you would get on a FREE discovery call with me this week