Once a month as SmallBizLady, I conduct interviews with experts on #SmallBizChat LIVE. The show takes place on the 4th Wednesday of every month from 8-9 pm ET and is streamed live on my Facebook fan page, my YouTube channel, and Twitter page. This is excerpted from my recent October 2019 #SmallBizChat LIVE interview with Serial Entrepreneur and Business Coach David Finkel @DavidFinkel , Legal Expert Nina Kaufman @NinaKaufman, and Branding Expert Lethia Owens @lethiaowens.
Serial entrepreneur David Finkel @DavidFinkel is the CEO of Maui Mastermind®, one of the world’s premier business coaching companies, which has worked with over 100,000 business leaders, helping them grow their companies and get their lives back. David’s clients enjoy an average annual growth rate five times higher than the average privately held company in the United States. He is a Wall Street Journal bestselling author of eleven books. His latest book is The Freedom Formula: How to Succeed in Business Without Sacrificing Your Family, Health, or Life For more information www.mauimastermind.com
SmallBizLady: Everyone talks about how we need to work smarter, not harder, but how do you do it in the face of all the demands on each of us every day… email… app feeds… staff challenges… customer fires?
David Finkel: I’ll share 3 quick ideas to help them with this.
- It’s not about more. It’s about better. They need to carve out blocks of their best time each week to focus on those fewer better things they do that create the most value for their business (vs right now these things likely get their remnant time in slivers…) The “Buffet strategy to time management”
- Focus days versus push days (and setting up recurring appts on the calendar)
- Big rocks
SmallBizLady: What you shared just makes good sense, why don’t people do this?
David Finkel: Most people living in the “time and effort economy” not the value economy…In the time and effort economy, people get paid for hours and effort (and attitude), but that leads to burn out, stress, and sacrifice.
You get paid for creating value. To create value, you need time. But as we discussed a moment ago, you need blocks of your best time… not slivers.
There are 5 chains that hold people in the Time and Effort economy… the two biggest ones:
- “lack of strategic depth”
SmallBizLady: You suggest in your book The Freedom Formula how leveraging a personal assistant and better handling email can make a big difference. Explain this?
- Know yourself… what kind of delegator are you? How do you best like to take in information?
- One list to rule them all (and NOT via an inbox).
- Record your delegation sessions (in fact, don’t meet as much, use your audio recording app to hand off more frequently.)
- Age your email
- Delay your first hit of the day
- The 1-2-3 subject line system
Nina Kaufman, Esq. @ninakaufman is a small business champion, award-winning attorney, media resource, and Cash Out BIG podcast host. The founder of Beyond Solo, she works with seasoned owners of knowledge-driven service firms who want outside support to own a business that doesn’t own them. She helps her clients discover more fun, flexibility, and reward from running their companies. For more, visit: http://BeyondSoloInnerCircle.com.
SmallBizLady: How can having good contracts help your business stay profitable?
Nina Kaufman: Good, clear contracts help you manage client communications and the scope of work, so things don’t get out of hand, and you don’t lose money (and your client’s confidence in you) having to re-do the work that wasn’t done to satisfaction the first time. Good contracts make good clients.
SmallBizLady: What are the three foundational areas that help solo and small business owners scale their companies?
Nina Kaufman: The three foundational areas are:
- They need to choose the right clients
- They need to assemble a good team
- They need to create a company playbook
SmallBizLady: How should a small business owner choose the right clients?
Nina Kaufman: The “right” clients are the ones that can pay you a fair fee for the value of what you’re delivering. This isn’t just an exercise in marketing—you need to have a vision for your business financially. What do you need to earn (after expenses)? Where is the growth potential? What can your target market afford? This is part of the analysis that goes into setting your fees and NEGOTIATING your fees from a place of strength. Many small businesses pull a number out of thin air without understanding their profitability … and negotiate down from there…which leaves them strapped and broke.
SmallBizLady: How should a business owner assemble a good team?
Nina Kaufman: Small business overwhelm is probably the #1 killer of business growth—especially for solo and small firms. When the owner is wearing too many hats (and usually, NOT ones she’s been trained for), two things happen.
- She doesn’t have the time or brain-space to give her business the strategic focus and direction is needs.
- She’s probably making mistakes/things falling through the cracks, which lead to fines, penalties, and lawsuits.
Start by identifying where you’re spending time on tasks that you loathe, or that you’re not good at. Those are ripe opportunities to outsource to expert freelancers so that the work gets done properly. Having agreements with your freelancers can protect your intellectual property and confidential information.
Lethia Owens @LethiaOwens is a best-selling author, Tech CEO, branding expert and market domination strategist who is ranked #8 among the top 30 brand gurus in the world. She is the founder of Game Changers International. She helps businesses brand their brilliance, monetize their message and dominate their market. Lethia knows what it takes to be a game-changer her business strategies challenge business owners to get in the game because game changers, not spectators win championships. Her message of reinvention, courage, and self-empowerment helps business owners live their best life. For more information www.gamechangersint.com
SmallBizLady: What are the current trends you are seeing related to online marketing?
Lethia Owens: There are several trends we are seeing related to online marketing.
The first trend I’d like to highlight is disruptive marketing strategies that change the game in how users and visitors experience your brand. For example, proximity marketing is a strategy that can put your brand in front of attendees at a conference by using geo-targeting to push notifications to their smartphones. You can promote a notification for a free resource that is relevant and of interest to the audience you are targeting.
The second trend I’d like to highlight is the concept of serving vs selling. When you show up online, focus on serving the needs of your target audience instead of trying to sell them before building a relationship. No one likes to be sold to but everyone likes to buy. When you focus on serving and meeting the person’s needs, you are building brand equity that will likely cause them to remember you when they are ready to buy.
The third trend I’d like to share is called micro marketing moments. More and more people are using their smartphone to complete online activities. This gives marketers an opportunity to capitalize on these micro marketing moments and get their audience’s attention and provide solutions for their needs.
Users are on their smartphones searching for answers and are either looking for:
- Somewhere to GO,
- Something to DO,
- Something to BUY; or for
- Something they need to KNOW.
If as a marketer you can show up with powerful and quick solutions, you are likely to get their attention and possibly their business.
SmallBizLady: What does it mean to dominate your market?
Lethia Owens: To dominate your market, you need to leverage strategies that help you stay top of mind with your target audience and help you to be seen everywhere by the people who most need your products and services. You begin with analyzing your target client and you begin to show up where they are already doing business. Then you become prolific in creating and publishing your content across multiple social media networks. Here are some of my favorite tools and strategies for dominating my market.
- Optimizing for voice search is not only smart but necessary. Voice search is undoubtedly rising in popularity and it is predicted that by 2020, 50% of all queries will be voice-based according to Comscore. Consumers use natural language that is more specific and targeted when conducting a voice search. Voice engine optimization is a real thing and marketers who optimize their content for more natural language-based SEO will rank higher in the search engine results on voice-enabled devices such as Amazon’s Alexa, Apple Homepod, Google Home and Microsoft’s Cortana, Siri and Google Assistant which give searchers immediate voice answers to their questions.
- Chatbots have been rising in popularity and use over the past few years and is expected to continue its growth in 2020. According to Grand View Research, 45% of end-users prefer to use Chatbots as a major means of communicating with the brands they interact with. With an emphasis on improving the customer experience, Chatbots play a critical role in helping marketers better engage with their audience – without really doing much. This increases the marketer’s brand equity with the consumer and helps them stand out among the crowd and enhancing their ability to further dominate their market.
- Engagement-Based Email Marketing. As email marketing is getting smarter, marketers have started to carefully customize their email marketing strategy. For instance, if a contact highly engages with your emails, you will want to nurture this contact on a more regular basis than a contact who isn’t actively engaged and opening your emails. Your email marketing campaign should take engagement into consideration when determining what to send to your contacts and how often to send messages to them. To increase engagement and reinforce a more personalized approach to email marketing, consider sending plain text emails to give a more personalized feel to your communication.
- The Market Domination Blueprint. This blueprint is designed to maximize the effort one puts into creating magnetic content on a weekly basis. The goal is to create a magnetic piece of content and then repurpose it in several different formats for distribution across many different social media platforms.
SmallBizLady: What is the market domination blueprint?
Lethia Owens: The Market Domination Blueprint is designed to maximize the effort one puts into creating magnetic content on a weekly basis. The goal is to create a magnetic piece of content and then repurpose it in several different formats for distribution across many different social media platforms.
This blueprint teaches you how to take a magnetic piece of content and repurpose it across many different platforms, thus getting the biggest bang for your buck so to speak. Looking at the following image (https://lethiaowens.net/2W3I9ee), you can see that I’ve selected key social media platforms on which your content will be promoted. The setup for these platforms is a one-time task and the work comes into play on a weekly basis where your magnetic content is created, repurposed and then positioned online for consumption. The fourth and final step is to promote your content with a daily strategy that focuses on a different platform each day.
If you found this interview helpful, join us on Wednesdays 8-9 pm ET; follow @SmallBizChat on Twitter.
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For more tips on how to start or grow your small business subscribe to Melinda Emerson’s blog http://www.succeedasyourownboss.com