In our last blarticle (blog-article=blarticle, right?) we talked about how you know you’re in Stage 1 of Success with your business because you aren’t making any money yet. We went over some of the hit-the-ground-running steps that any new entrepreneur has to do in order to get going and move out of Stage 1 and quickly into Stage 2.
Interestingly, the action steps for Stage 1 businesses can also apply to an ‘old’ business that you are re-starting, re-branding or re-inventing. If your business isn’t making any money at this moment – check the steps for Stage 1 and do the ones that apply.
Stage 2 of Success is pretty exciting because this is where you actually start making some MONEY in your new business – woohooo! Let’s jump right in and see what that looks like, okay?
How Do I Know if My Business is in Success Stage 2?
- You’ve started your business, taking on customers/clients
- You’re making some part-time income with it (Cool!)
- You’re not sure what your next step should be
- You have lots of marketing questions
- You’re avoiding doing things you don’t like doing (marketing yourself, speaking to strangers, selling to prospects, closing new clients, social media, going to networking meetings, etc.)
- You sometimes feel like things are going backwards instead of forward
- You’re afraid it might not work and you’re wondering if you should do something else to make some extra money ‘in the meantime’.
Stage 2 shows that your business has potential because some money is coming in, but the money isn’t enough yet, leaving you in one of 3 situations:
- You’re having to work like mad to hopefully get your bills covered.
- You’re doing side-jobs to support yourself in the meantime.
- You’re burning through your savings quicker than you can say “wildfire”.
One way or another you HAVE to get your business to Stage 3 of Success or else all your hard work will have been for nothing. So let’s figure out what that takes.
How To Get from Stage 2 to Stage 3
Okay, so you’re determined and motivated and you’re learning on your feet, but the income is falling short of your needs and expectations. You’re definitely gathering a lot of valuable information about what NOT to do (those time-wasting, money-sucking ‘investments’ that turned out to be a great way to get side-tracked and not much else.)
But what SHOULD you be doing if you want to rapidly push your business into to the next stage of success?
Here’s a Success Memo that applies to Stage 2 businesses:
In order to make the money you need to cover your overhead and bills you need to be VERY FOCUSED on what WILL make you money – and ignore what WON’T lead directly to cash flow. It’s so easy to get sidetracked with “shiny objects” so let’s not do that, okay?
Here are some of the things you’ll need to do to move your business from Stage 2 to Stage 3:
- Clarify your brand based on what you learn (feedback from your target market)
- Create a better marketing plan now that you have more information
- Get a more professional website based on the new information
- Find out what your “key terms” are for your specific business
- Get SEO done on your website based on key terms
- Package and upgrade your products so that they align with what YOUR target market needs and wants
- Create/update your business page
- Mail to your list regularly
- Review your pricing to make sure you are not under-or over-charging
- Analyze what you have done RIGHT and do more
- Analyze what you have done WRONG and quit doing it
- Keep meeting new people – always!
It’s always a good idea to get help/support from a business support team, a mentor, a coach or a consultant – preferably someone you know, like and trust who has a good reputation.
What’s important is that you have a plan, you believe in yourself, and you just keep putting one foot in front of the other.
Never feel guilty for asking for help along the way – it’s what successful people do.
Mandy & Wayne
P.S. If your business is in Stage 2 and you want to quickly move it to stage 3, why not schedule a time when we can chat?