If you clock 60 hours a week, you feel overwhelmed with an ever-growing to-do-list, but your bank balance still gives you the finger (no, not the nice thumbs-up one), then there’s usually one problem:
Focus, or a lack thereof.
And no, I’m not talking about sitting your butt down, eliminating all distractions, and focussing on the task in front of you. That’s good too. But no, I’m talking about a focused business and marketing strategy.
“But Lydia, I’ve set my goals for the year, I wrote a 500-page business and marketing plan that sets out everything my team and I should do… what’s wrong with that?”
One question. How many things did you list out in that monstrous plan of yours?
Let’s say you offer 10 different services, you work with 10 different types of clients, and you have 10 different marketing strategies (plus that new cool thing you heard about yesterday, oh, and that other social media challenge you did last week, and don’t forget about the stuff you learned in that course you did last year which you didn’t implement yet. “I’m gonna implement them all! Uhm…?” )
Don’t you feel exhausted, just reading that paragraph?
This is how a focused business and marketing strategy looks like:
- Choose one niche/ideal client
- Focus on one service or problem that you solve
- Create one funnel, with one theme, and with one marketing platform for each of the four stages in the buyer’s journey:
The really cool part about this is, there are a lot of steps that you can automate if you structure your business and marketing this way.
Let me explain.
One Niche/Ideal Client
The businesses of a fast-food franchise, a medical doctor, a non-profit organisation, and a construction company are all vastly different. They have different laws and regulations to comply with; they have different costing and profit structures; stock management is different; their working capital requirements are different.
If you attempt to know everything about every one of them, you’re never going to get very good at any of them. You simply won’t have the time.
Yes, the basics of accounting are the same, but think a bit further. If you want to advise them on anything beyond accounting, how valuable is your advice going to be?
A generalist attracts low-paying, high-maintenance clients. Rather aim to become a specialist. A specialist is really good at one or two things and the clear choice to their niche audience. Once you become a specialist, you’ll attract higher-paying clients who value your expertise and whom you enjoy working with.
Another big advantage of getting clear on your niche is that your marketing content and message becomes focused and crystal clear. It becomes easier to attract the right people, and you can help them better through your free content because you understand them so much better. It means that you can create less marketing content, but with a higher impact – more on that below.
One Service or Problem to Solve
The same goes for one service. If you try to master 10 different services, you’re constantly going to be busy learning new stuff. You may just keep up-to-date with all the changes, but you’ll never become a leader in any of them.
No-one is going to tell their friends to go to [insert your name] if they wanted someone to calculate the value of a business they’re selling or looking to buy if that’s only a fraction of what you do. However, if that was your speciality, let’s say you do a new valuation every week and advise your clients on whether the deal in front of them is a good one or not – that’s when your name becomes synonymous with that service.
Now pair that with a specific niche – business valuations for franchisees – and you become the undisputed authority on the subject.
One Marketing Funnel
Lastly, you want to get super-focused in your marketing. You simply cannot be active on three social media platforms. You cannot write a blog post, record a podcast episode, and manage a Facebook group all in the same week. You cannot create a new ebook or a guide or checklist every fortnight. You cannot do all of this and expect them all to be mind-blowingly good.
Can you imagine how much more effective you could be if you only created one marketing funnel – with a few different pieces which I’ll discuss in a moment – master that and automate some of it to save even more time?
Then pair with that a focused approach where you target only one group of people (your niche) and leading to only one type of service. (And in case you’re wondering, yes, you can still do the bookkeeping of the person who comes to you for valuation services, but you don’t market the bookkeeping services.)
Okay, so what are the pieces of an effective marketing funnel?
A funnel is divided into four stages: Attract, Solve, Nurture, and Sell:
- Attract: This is where you attract people into your funnel. Your aim is to get the attention of people who don’t know you yet, but who fits your ideal client profile. Some platforms that can be utilised in the ‘Attract’ stage include social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn, or you can make use of advertising, like Facebook ads.
- Solve: This is where you give them a quick win, like a checklist or roadmap that will help them to solve a problem your niche typically faces. This is also called a lead magnet or a freebie or a bribe.
- Nurture: Once you’ve solved a small problem for them, they now know who you are and what you can do for them. The next step is to start nurturing the relationship. This can be in the form of a series of emails, a free course, or a Facebook community. You’ll have a conversation with your people, solve even more problems for them, and warm them up for the next step.
- Sell: Lastly, you can put an offer in front of them. If you’ve nurtured the relationship with them, then they’ll be ready for this step. You can now have a one-on-one discovery call or in-person meeting with them, you can present a webinar where you invite them to sign up to work with you, or you can send them to a sales page where they can sign up for your service.
Choose one thing for each stage, and make sure that what you do in one stage leads them to the next. For instance, let’s say you run a Facebook ad (Attract stage), lead them to your downloadable freebie (Solve stage), and so on.
Eventually, everything you do in the first three stages should lead to your service. For example, if your speciality is tax planning services, your freebie can’t be about something unrelated, like bookkeeping. It should be something like a list of things that can help them to save on their tax bill. And then everything in between should also revolve around this one theme.
Get Your Focus On
If you want to learn more about marketing and how to choose channels and tactics for each of the four phases discussed above, then sign up for my free course, Map out your entire 12-month marketing plan in 6 days.
I know that all of this may sound a little unorthodox and different from what you’re used to. But take the leap. You’ll be amazed at how much time you can save, how much better you get at serving your clients, and you’ll soon be able to charge the fees that you know you’re worth.
FREE COURSE: Create a simple, overwhelm-free marketing plan and finally get those ideal clients to say yes to you!
After going through this email course, you’ll…
- Know how to attract the right type of clients that are a good fit for your firm
- Have more confidence in your marketing knowledge and know what to focus on
- Know the ideal marketing strategy which will be the most valuable FOR YOU (yes, we’re all different, and we don’t do cookie-cutter here)
- Be clear on how to move your ideal clients to your end goal – signing up to work with you!