Mistakes Holding Your Business Back from Growth

Has this ever happened to you?

You’re looking at your business numbers and talk to yourself, “Why does it seem like nothing is growing even though I’ve been crazy busy trying to get my business out there?

Or even worse, you avoid looking at any numbers related to your business until it’s time to compile all the information you need to send in your taxes to your CPA, and as a result, you’re really not even sure what’s happening in your business.

Sure there are more ways to measure your success than simply the bottom line, but the numbers don’t lie. They can tell you the truth about what’s really going on in your business.

Understanding your numbers is the best way to answer the question – Is your business growing?

Most business owners want to see consistent growth year after year. We want to increase our revenue by reaching and serving more people. We want to increase our income so we can upgrade our lifestyle.

But occasionally you’ll hit a plateau where nothing you seem to do seems to drive your business forward.

Growth can feel like a bit of a slippery topic, like if all were concerned about is growing our business that were somehow greedy or just care about the money. But it’s one that comes up all the time.

When we start our new business, growth comes pretty quickly simply because we’re filling our client docket. It’s pretty easy to double your business if you’re just going from 5 clients to 10 clients!

But as we transition out of the start-up stage of our business, growth becomes a bit trickier. It’s not as easy to double your business if your calendar is completely booked out and you’re at the top end of your price range. We start to hit these breakpoints as we transition from the start-up stage to the success stage to the scale & sustain stage where we really have to reevaluate what strategies will grow our business… or even if our business model is designed for growth.

The truth is, what got you here may not get you there.

And if you’re ready to move to the next level in your business, especially if you’re ready to start scaling with new revenue streams, then you really have to understand what you need to focus on to see that growth.

[clickToTweet tweet=”Struggling to consistently grow your biz? Remember – what got you here may not get you there.” quote=”Struggling to consistently grow your biz? Remember – what got you here may not get you there.” theme=”style2″]

Ready to Set Your Business Up For Growth?
It Starts By Knowing Your Numbers

#1: Track The RIGHT Metrics.

There’s a great saying, “What Gets Measured Gets Managed.” But too often, entrepreneurs don’t have a clear picture of what’s really happening in their business until it’s too late to change the plan and course correct.

That’s why it’s crucial to know your numbers!

When you know your numbers, you not only have a clear measure of your growth, but you can more accurately predict your growth.

Revenue is one of the easiest measurements of growth. We can quickly tell if we are on or off track with revenue goals by simply measuring them each week, month, and year.

…But revenue is a lagging metric. That means that once the revenue has come through the door, there really isn’t anything we can do change the outcome.

What we want to measure are the leading metrics. These are metrics that occur prior to the sale of your product, program, or service. The leading metric can help you to predict the results of the lagging metric.

Understanding leading and lagging metrics is essential for any goal you want to pursue.

If I’m looking at my consulting business goals and my primary strategy was offering free strategy sessions, I know that 1 out of 2 sessions would result in a new consulting client. So if I wanted to book 5 new clients, I need to have 10 free strategy sessions on my calendar that month.

This gives me 2 leading metrics to track: 1st) the number of free sessions booked each week and 2nd) the conversion rate from free sessions into paid clients.

By tracking those two leading metrics, I could more accurately change course to hit my revenue goals for the month.

If I started seeing only 1 in 4 sessions convert to a new client, then I knew that I needed to increase the number of sessions on my calendar to make up the difference or I needed to review my free session system to determine why I wasn’t getting the right people on the call or how I could improve my skills during this call.

As my business has shifted into the scale & sustain stage of business, one of the most important leading metrics I track is my email list growth.

Often, one of the reasons businesses stop growing is they are simply pitching the same thing to the same people, hoping for a different result. If your community isn’t growing, with new people seeing what you have to offer, then you’ll burn out your list – they will stop responding to your offers, stop opening your emails, and start unsubscribing or leaving your community.

Attrition is a natural part of any business. But you’ve got to have a proactive plan to not only counteract this attrition, but to proactively focus on growth.

That’s where ATTRACT marketing strategies come in. There is a big difference between attract marketing and nurture marketing strategies. We’ll talk more about nurture marketing in a moment, but attract marketing is getting your name and your business in front of new audiences.

Attract marketing is the opposite of posting on your blog, emailing your newsletter, or updating social media. Those are all nurture marketing activities – these activities build relationships with people who already know you.

If you only depend on nurture marketing activities to grow your business, then growth will be painfully slow. This is the trap of the, “if you build it, they will come” myth.

Attract marketing is when you get your message in front of new audiences. This could be writing for another well-known blog, getting interviewed on a local television show or podcast, or even running FB ads.

Attract marketing drives new traffic to your website (or through the doors of your business). Now, there are dozens of ways attract marketing strategies, so I highly recommend just focusing on 1 or 2 strategies at a time, tracking the results, and then deciding which are the best fit for your business.

In my business, I know that getting interviewed is one of my best attract strategies to build my email list. Each month, I track how many times I sent interview pitches, how many interviews I completed, and how many interviews went live.

Then I can also track new email subscribers after an interview goes live. When I did an interview with Female Entrepreneur Association, it added over 300 new subscribers to my email list. This gives me great insight into what audiences are a great fit for me to continue spending my time and energy.

It’s really important that you keep this simple so you can get the most traction. One quarter, I may focus my attract energy on interviews. Another quarter, I may focus on running Facebook Ads. You can do multiple strategies at once, but I find it’s much easier to determine what really works for you if you can put everything behind it for a dedicated time frame.

Ask Yourself: What are your leading metrics and lagging metrics? What attract strategies are you using to hit your leading metrics goals?

#2: Consistency Matters.

When I’m working with a client who is not seeing the growth that they hoped, one of the first things I do is review the last several months of their marketing and sales in their business. It instantly tells me if this is a problem.

They might have started out with a weekly newsletter and blog post, but as they got busier in their business, it became more challenging for them to continue creating this regular nurture marketing for their community. So they put it on the back burner, figuring that it would be okay if a week or two went by and their community didn’t hear from them.

But suddenly a week turns into a month turns into several months… and then your current clients are about to wrap up… and you need to fill your client docket again. It’s the classic feast or famine cycle that keeps most entrepreneurs trapped in a business that’s not growing.

When you’re inconsistent with your nurture marketing and you only show up in someones inbox when you’re asking for a sale, you reduce the quality of the relationships that you have with your community. It actually makes it harder for you to enroll those people into your product programs or services.

It’s kind of like if you went on a date with someone you were really interested in. And you were looking forward to getting to know them even more, but you didn’t hear from them for weeks and then months. Suddenly, you get a text one night asking if you want to hang out. You’re looking at the screen thinking, “Who is this person? I don’t really want anything to do with them.” The moment has passed. You’re just not interested anymore.

That is what happens when you don’t consistently nurture your existing community. Remember – they took the first step, they made the first move! They signed up for your email list, they got your great free offer, and they are learning more about you through your regular content. But if you haven’t been nurturing this relationship, it dramatically reduces the likelihood that they’ll want to take the next step.

So why does this happen? Why do we have such a hard time being consistent with our nurture marketing?

Often, it’s because we simply put too many tips, tricks, and tactics on our plate instead of focusing in on a simpler, sustainable strategy.

It’s easier to stay on track when you don’t have a busy client calendar. Maybe you commit to doing a weekly newsletter, twice weekly blog posts, and daily social media updates. But without a real system in place, this starts to feel unsustainable as you start filling your calendar with happily paying clients. You just run out of hours and it becomes something you push off until you’ve got more time.

It’s crucial that you create a strategy you can stick with. The more consistent you can be with your nurture marketing, the communication you’re sending out on a regular basis to people in your community, the better results you’ll see when it’s time to invite people into your products, program, or services.

Ask Yourself: What nurture marketing strategies have you committed to? Do you have a system in place to help you consistently show up for your community?

#3: Double Down On What Works

I often see this come up when entrepreneurs are ready to launch a new product, program, or service. They spend all this time creating a new offering, they spend weeks or even months ramping up the promotion to feel said offering, but when they don’t have a five or six figure launch, they feel like it was a complete failure.

And because they feel like it didn’t live up to their expectations, they throw it all away and start all over again with a completely new offering.

You’ve probably seen entrepreneurs who struggle with this – every other month it seems like they’re launching something new. In fact, you start to wonder what is it that they really do in their business because every time you turn around, the focus is on something completely different!

When you’re constantly starting over, you’re doing yourself a disservice. The truth is, the first time you go after a new strategy or a new offering, you’re faced with a huge learning curve. There’s so much you’re learning about this process. And this is the hardest it will probably ever be!

But once you go through the process of a big promotion for a new product, program, or service… you have a significant advantage. You now understand the process. You’ll be able to do it better and faster than before. You’ll have more feedback and insight into what your audience responds to. You have validation that people wanted this offering. THIS. IS. HUGE!!!

Think about the most successful entrepreneurs in your niche. Chances are they do not constantly reinvent the wheel. They likely have the same offering – the same products, programs, and services that they are known for. And the reason they’re well known? They methodically grow their signature offerings over time.

But if you were to look back on the first time they ever launched that offering, chances are it wasn’t the big success you are hearing about today. They took their time to get it right. They learn how to iterate and refine their offering to see better results. They took the feedback from their clients and community, then upgraded their launches.

I’d be willing to bet that nearly every six or seven-figure launch you’re watching started as a humble four or five-figure launch.

As you sit down at your next CEO Date to do your strategic planning, review all of the offerings you promoted in the past year. Which offerings had the best results? Which offerings generated the most revenue? And what could you do, this year, grow the results of that offering?

Ask Yourself: What offerings do you currently have that have proven results? How can you double down on promotion of that product, program, or service?

Avoid These Top 3 Mistakes!

Struggling to grow your business consistently?

Overcome these top 3 mistakes for more predictable profits!

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