OK, so we know that you set up your business offering what you do because that’s what you wanted – that’s what we all did.
But it’s not about YOU!
It’s about the people who pay you, and pay attention to you – your audience.
Your business is not about what you want to offer them, it’s about what they want from you.
There’s a couple of differences…
Let’s take a trip back in time
I started out in business in 2015 as a social media manager, running other people’s Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
I had a couple of clients, but mostly I got enquiries that didn’t turn into clients.
After reflecting on what people were saying to me, I realised that for my audience, social media management wasn’t exactly what they wanted.
They wanted social media done for them so they didn’t have to do anything about it or even think about it. But they still had to tell me what was going on in their business so I could create all the posts…
They wanted their social media done professionally to get instant amazing results and Take Over The Internet! But it doesn’t work like that…
They wanted social media done for them because they didn’t understand it. But they didn’t have the budget to have it done professionally…
So clearly what I was offering wasn’t working, for my audience. I had to think a little deeper.
What they actually NEEDED was to understand it, to not worry about it, to feel like they knew what they were doing, to feel they were doing something worthwhile (not just faffing on Facebook *ahem*), to not feel like ‘those old people who don’t get it’.
And paying once for advice and training is definitely more affordable than paying monthly to have it done for you!
So I switched from being hands-on to giving advice and training, like I still do today.
No two audiences are the same
Something to bear in mind is that I’m talking about MY AUDIENCE. I knew successful social media managers then, and I know successful social media managers now.
Everyone’s audience is different, even between businesses with similar products/services in a similar location.
So don’t look at what others around you are doing and just copy them – there’s no guarantee that’s what YOUR AUDIENCE wants.
Think about conversations you’ve had with them, ask them what they want, tell them ‘I’m thinking of offering X what do you think?’
Find out what they want from you.
This is the bit where Clair eats all the doughnuts
Now, WANT is a particular thing.
Who goes to the supermarket with a list of 5 things they NEED and comes back with 2 carrier bags…
…and one-and-a-half of those carrier bags is things they WANT?!
Come on, hands up!
Yep, buying the laundry liquid you NEED is really boring. So those nice people at Co-op Tavistock have put a display of doughnuts – what I WANT – right by the queue for the till. Lovely!
So, first find out what your audience wants. That’s quite easy for them to tell you, but it won’t give you all the info you need. You have to do a bit more thinking to work out what that ‘want’ really means, what they actually need.
Here’s the ‘write this down’ bit:
You sell them what they WANT – no more worrying about ‘am I doing social media right?’
You give them what they NEED – a bespoke advice session to understand how it works and what to do
You might be asking: ‘how do you sell them what they want if that’s not what you’re going to give them?’ Oh, but you’re totally going to give them what they WANT – it’s all in the messaging you use!
You don’t sell them an advice session, you sell them understanding and reassurance.
No-one really WANTS an XK400i vacuum with multi-bristle-strand technology, developed over 20 years at MIT. They WANT their carpets 100% free of pet hair, instantly and easily.
No-one cares about your story. Sorry, but there it is.
Developed over 20 years at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Well done, good for you.
BUT – 100% free of pet hair? Oh, that would hugely improve my life! MY LIFE. Coz that’s what I care about.
I’m not going to search Google for ‘the technology’ or ‘how it was developed’ or ‘how many Nobel scientists created it’. What does it do for ME?!
So, whether you’re developing a new service, writing some new marketing messages, or even setting up a whole new business – think about the people you’re doing it for.
No, not the ones whose mortgage you’re paying with this income… the ones who will pay you so you have that income!
Here’s your homework
Step 1: Find out what your audience wants. Ask them!
Step 2: Consider what that WANT really means. What do they actually NEED?
And if that means you need to totally change your business model, so be it. You might find out you like it a million times more than what you did before! *insert cheeky wink here*