No business can survive without customers. There is always a desire to increase revenue. That includes your business. In the business world, competition can be fierce, and finding ways to stand out in a crowd can be difficult and sometimes, overwhelming. We need to remember the advice from Peter Drucker who said, “No one buys what you sell; they buy what is of value to them.”
So, the question you should ask yourself is, “How can we deliver value differently or better than our competitors?” Here are my simple hacks to match your services with the customers’ needs and stop wasting time trying to offer too many options.
Identify Your One Trick Pony
When building a business, the first task at hand is determining what your customers find valuable and delivering that product or service to them. For example, you may offer a coaching program for start-up entrepreneurs, an event planning service for corporations, insurance packages focused on small businesses, or copy writing for online entrepreneurs. The important factor is identifying how you can best leverage your skills, knowledge and abilities while providing value to your customers.
This is where the one trick pony comes into play. To build your revenue base quickly, focus on the one unique product or service that you can provide consistently to many different customers. This becomes your go to product and the revenue stream you can use as the foundation upon which to later add additional streams. This revenue stream is your one-trick pony. It only serves one purpose to your growing customer base looking for the same value. You become the expert, known for providing this one trick pony.
As you become more proficient at providing this service or product, you can begin to scale. Instead of one-to-one coaching, you offer group coaching and reach more people, while increasing your revenue stream. Another way to exploit the one-trick pony is by automating. For example, if you are an event planner, and become proficient at designing an efficient, effective system, you may develop an on-line-course to offer a broader audience the chance to learn your system. This automation allows you to increase revenue on a passive basis.
Know Whom You Are Serving
Having a deep understanding of your ideal customer is extremely important. Knowing their personality, their behavior, how they spend their time and opinion patterns offer much needed information about how to present your message to them and what types of products and services they are most likely to buy.
To successfully market to your prospective buyers and convert them into paying clients, you must deliver relevant services or products, which of course, becomes your one-trick pony. This starts with research. It is well worth your time and will save you from endlessly creating products and services that don’t sell. With research, you will better understand what problem the client needs you to solve, and how to eliminate their pain point.
Many business owners think they know who their customer is. However, their perception of their customer base is usually too broad. They think their products and services will deliver value to a very large swath of the population. Their thinking is usually wrong, unless they are Coca Cola or Google. In most cases, it is better to narrow the playing field. Working with a smaller customer niche allows you to focus the products and services you offer and provide a deeper level of satisfaction.
Let’s consider our example of the insurance broker who focused on providing the best insurance packages possible for small startup businesses. She became known for providing excellent service and was available to answer the questions these new startups had. She grew her business through word of mouth. By keeping a narrow niche as she grew her company, she was not competing with the larger insurance brokers where she would become lost in the crowd. She could deliver specific high-quality customer service and value better than her larger competitors who would have less time devoted to the small startups.
Love the Upsell
Now that you know your customer base and are delivering your one-trick pony on a regular basis, it’s time to consider upselling. Upselling simply means that you get the customer buying your one-trick pony to add to the purchase. Adding complementary services or products to that one-trick pony is a natural way to extend your sales opportunities. For example, a window cleaning service might add cleaning the front hallway chandelier for little additional cost. The company staff already are onsite cleaning glass, so adding this service is easy for them and lessens the burden for the homeowner.
Adding complementary services or products helps you gain new clients, but it also helps you maintain existing clients. Asking your current customers to buy more from you is easier than you think. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that the only way to add revenue is to expand your customer base. In this approach you would spend a great amount of time and energy looking for new customers but spend little time mining the sales opportunities available in your existing customer base. These customers who already know you and like your services can be willing buyers if you offer them complementary services to what they have previously bought.
Build on Your Success
Remember your one-trick pony? That’s the start of your success. Build on it. As you add products and services, you are keeping them related in some way to the product or service for which you have become well known. Once that service or product delivery system with its upsell components are well established, you are ready to add an additional revenue stream. Too often business owners try to expand the revenue streams too quickly and find that their business stalls.
To quickly increase revenue streams, incorporate these hacks into your business implementation plan to increase revenue. By building a solid foundation with a one-trick pony you will find it easy to sell repeatedly to a customer base that appreciates the value you deliver. Add your upsell options to that one-trick pony. It’s easier than you think. You will find that you remain more focused not only in whom you serve, but the specific value you deliver. Staying simple is always the best practice, especially when using these hacks.