How To Go From Start-Up To 6 Figures In 18 Months
Many Australians have begun opting out of the “wage treadmill” to follow their dreams of owning and running their own business. But the unfortunate reality is that no matter how fantastic the initial business concept, only 51% of non-employing businesses in Australia survive for more than fours years of operations*.
I started my business five years ago and am proud to say that I among the 51% whose dream has not only survived but also steadily grown and thrived. So what was my secret? Did I launch at the right time during a booming economy? Did I have killer advertising campaigns or perhaps, a generous benefactor?
The truth? I had none of the above. Neither did my success happen by chance, good luck or divine intervention. I followed a well thought out strategy, which has since led me to being the founder of Australia’s leading and fastest growing hypnotherapy business. And I went from zero to well past the six-figure mark in my first year of practice. In an industry where the average hypnotherapist earns approximately $45k per annum, my leap is quite a significant one.
So here is my four-step strategy to taking your dream business from start-up to six figures in under two years.
Also read: Seven Guidelines To Real Success
Step 1: Create A Specific Goal
Quite often, when I ask my mentoring clients what they want for their business, they simply exclaim, “More clients!” When I ask them exactly how many more or exactly how much more revenue they want, they have no answer.
You cannot possibly hit it an unknown, invisible goal. It sounds obvious but most businesses just hope to grow in their first year and are almost fearful of setting a revenue target in case they miss it and be declared a failure. The way I see it, there is no failure, only feedback.
Here is what you should be asking yourself:
- How much do I want to earn within 12 months and for each subsequent month after that?
- What will it cost to supply my product or service?
- What activities will generate my target revenue every month?
Step 2: Create Business Momentum
I created a target referral strategy that gave me the business momentum I needed to get as many clients as I could manage. This system also gave me the confidence to take my business to the next level.
This is how my system works:
1. Tell as many people as possible about what you do at every opportunity you get, whether you are at a networking event or a barbecue. The point is to make sure everyone around you thinks of your business when they encounter a need for your product or service.
2. Create a pricing structure that spurs rapid business momentum. This is what mine looked like when I first started out:
– Family and closest friends – free
– Partners of friends – 50% off
– Friends of friends – 25% off
– Others – full price
3. Get as many testimonials and referrals as you can.
Step 3: Create A Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
If your clients perceive you to be exactly like your competitors, the only differentiator will be the price. At which point, you are either the cheapest or not. If you do not want “cheap” to be your USP then you need to create a differentiator that sets you apart from the crowd.
Ask yourself these three questions:
- Why would your clients choose you above your competitors?
- What is it about your product or service that is different to everyone else’s?
- How can you solve the client’s problem in a way that others cannot?
If you can create a killer USP then you will never be drawn into the pricing “death spiral”.
Step 4: Sell The Value Before The Price
Value is completely different to price. People need to understand what they will get out of it before they will even consider how much they are willing to pay for it. If you go straight into the dollar value then you would have put yourself back into the dreaded price war. So think of how your product or service can improve a persona’s life and then sell that vision to them.
* Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Counts of Australian Businesses, including Entries and Exits, Jun 2008 to Jun 2012
Helen Mitas is the founder of Hypnofit, a thriving wellness clinic in Melbourne. She specialises in taking start-ups to a six-figure turnover within 18 months just as she has done with her own business. Helen is also a clinical hypnotherapist, business mentor, speaker and the published author of Mindset Dominance. She can be reached at www.helenmitas.com
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