List Building: Facts & Figures

List Building: Facts & Figures

If you’re new (or newer) in business, you may have heard that you need to be “building your list”, or “the money is in the list” or any variation thereof.  So let me take a minute today to explain to you exactly what this means, and why there’s so much emphasis on this business-building strategy. Think of this article as your list building overview!

Why Building An Email List Is Important

Before you can set about bringing in new subscribers every day (a.k.a. building your email list) you need to understand why this is such an important business building strategy.

If…

  • You’re struggling to get clients
  • Your income looks more like a ride on a theme park roller coaster
  • Not enough people buy your products or register for your programs
  • You’re losing confidence in your ability to build your business

Then…

You need to create a BIG email list, which means you need to have a plan in place to bring in new subscribers EVERY DAY. And your subscribers need to be highly targeted, meaning that you don’t want just anyone on your list, but you want people who have a specific problem that they want solving, and which your services/products/programs can solve for them.

So, before you put any list building strategies in place you need to be really clear on who your ideal clients are and what the problems your business solves for them.  Then, in your marketing and list building activities you can speak directly to that group of people.

It’s Simply A Numbers Game

Ever wonder how the big guys manage to have six-figure launches? Or sell a ton of products? Or fill their live events?

It’s not because they have a better product than you. Or are more of an “expert” than you. Or any other reason you care to come up with.

It’s simply because they have a bigger email list.

They have a BIG pool of subscribers who are their ideal clients. So when they make an offer to their subscribers more people sign up.

Let’s Do The Math…

Let’s make some assumptions based on industry averages* for email marketing to professional services business to business sector…

  • Email open rate = 20%
  • Email click through rate (subscribers who open your email click through to whatever you’re directing them to) = 3%
  • Conversion rate (subscribers who click the link in your email and then take action on your offer) = 4%

So, let’s just look at those first two numbers — opens and click throughs. On an email list size of:

  • 500 subscribers: open rate = 100 subscribers, click through rate = 3 subscribers
  • 5,000 subscribers: open rate = 1,000 subscribers, click through rate = 30 subscribers
  • 50,000 subscribers: open rate = 10,000 subscribers, click through rate = 300 subscribers

Now, before you feel despondent by some of these numbers, just a few things for you to note here:

  • These numbers are on a single email broadcast – not an entire launch campaign.
  • This is an industry average number. Your own numbers may be different (which is why it’s important to track your stats too). You need to know how YOUR business is performing.

But you get the picture… it all comes down to numbers!

* Email marketing statistics 2016, Smartinsights.com

first-1000-subs-checklist

1,000 Subscribers — The Tipping Point

There is a ‘magic number’ when it comes to building your list.  If you can work your way torwards gettting your first 1,000 subscribers you’ll see things start to snowball after that.  You’ll see more results from the offers you make, more interaction between yourself and your subscribers, and you’ll find once you’ve got some basic list building strategies in place, you’ll start to draw new subscribers to you every day.

However, before you go rushing off to work on your list building, let me just say that with all this talk of list building and numbers etc. remember that at the end of every email address is a person. Your first priority should be to build your relationship with that person, so consider that with every email that you send out. How is it building your relationship with your subscriber?

So now that you know a little more about email marketing and why it’s important that you have new subscribers EVERY DAY where are you struggling with your list building activities? Post in the comments below; I’d love to help.

© 2017 Tracey Lawton Training & Consulting LLC

Tracey LawtonAbout the author: Online Business Development Strategist, Tracey Lawton, teaches life coaches, business coaches, and virtual assistants how to become more organized, streamlined, and automated so that they don’t constantly bottleneck projects and processes. Having the right systems in place leads to consistent revenues, more clients, and less stress and overwhelm. Get your free List Building System Checklist TODAY and start to grow your list so you can ensure a constant flow of clients.

 

Systems: This Is What Happens When You Have The RIGHT Systems But In The WRONG Order

Systems: This Is What Happens When You Have The RIGHT Systems But In The WRONG Order

I recently held a virtual workshop where I talked about the three biggest mistakes I see many business owners making in their business, which leaves them feeling overwhelmed, frustrated, and basically stuck.

One of those mistakes I shared was having the right systems in place, but in the wrong order.

Let me explain a bit more…

Over the 16 years I have been in business, I have become aware that there is a very specific order in which to build your business, and if you do any of this out of order, then at some point you’re going to cause some problems for yourself.

So, I took these steps and created a 3-step business management model. I refer to these three steps at the 3 “Ms” to Online Business Management Success, and it is this business model I follow and teach my private clients to follow too.

Put simply, the three steps in the 3 Ms model are:

  • Step 1: Manage – build the foundations for your business by creating your core systems
  • Step 2: Market – create visibility so that your target market knows who you are and what you do, and then build your database of potential clients and customers
  • Step 3: Create Multiple Streams – when you get to the “bursting point” in your business repackage your expertise into various products and programs to leverage your time

I’ve written and talked about this specific business management model a lot previously, so I don’t want to focus on the process today. Instead, I’d like to share with you the results you get (or don’t get) when you do things in the WRONG order.

Scenario #1: Creating & Launching an Info Product Without Having a List in Place

Rather than focusing on building your list (step 2: market), you spend time creating a product (step 3: multiple streams) because that’s what you’ve been led to believe works … create a passive product that people can buy on your website and you become an overnight success!

So you create and launch your product, but you don’t get any sales!

Why? Because you don’t have anyone to sell to!

This is a classic case of going straight to Step 3 and completely missing out Step 2.

Scenario #2: Running an Advertising Campaign to Get New Subscribers/Leads

Let’s say you run a Facebook ad for your ezine, and it’s a huge success and you get a ton of new subscribers (step 2: marketing). If one (or more) of these new subscribers are then interested in working with you, what processes do you have in place to turn that subscriber from a potential client into a paying client? I.e. your client conversion system – and this is actually a part of your contact management system (step 1: manage).

So if you don’t have this system in place before the marketing, you’re going to have to scramble to get this set up and you could actually lose the potential client in the process.

This is an example of marketing your business (step 2) before managing your business (step 1).

So even though in the two scenarios above, you had the right systems in place, you were implementing them in the wrong order. The result is that both of these scenarios will have a very real impact on your bottom line:

Scenario 1: You put in hours of YOUR time creating an info product with no sales. What is your hourly rate? Multiply that by how many hours it took you to create the product and there is the cost of your lost revenue opportunity. That time would have been better spent focusing on getting new ideal clients so that you can fill your business and generate consistent revenues.

Scenario 2: You lose the sale because you don’t have your systems in place. The client goes elsewhere. What has that lack of systems just cost you in terms of business revenue?

Where are you struggling to get the right systems in place? Share in the comments below; I’d love to help.

© 2017 Tracey Lawton Training & Consulting LLC

Tracey LawtonAbout the author: Online Business Development Strategist, Tracey Lawton, teaches life coaches, business coaches, and virtual assistants how to become more organized, streamlined, and automated so that they don’t constantly bottleneck projects and processes. Having the right systems in place leads to consistent revenues, more clients, and less stress and overwhelm. Get your free Systems Checklist TODAY and see if you have all of your bases covered.

 

3 Simple Steps To Manage Your Budget And Cashflow

3 Simple Steps To Manage Your Budget And Cashflow

Along with paper piles, budget and Cashflow is another area that can be a huge source of overwhelm and frustration! 

And I bet the very title of this article made you think twice about reading it 🙂

In your corporate days you would have had a bookkeeping/accounting department that took care of all of this for you – they paid the invoices, they tracked the receivables, they tracked the income, and they told you the bottom line!

Now that you’re running your own business you are also the Chief Financial Officer, and it can be very overwhelming.  However, it needn’t be… let me share with you three simple steps that you can put in place to manage your budget and Cashflow.

But first, let’s start with what is a Cashflow projection?

One important area of your Financial Management System is that of a Cashflow projection.  Put simply, a Cashflow projection shows whether your anticipated income will be able to cover your expected (projected) expenses and this report is very beneficial to you in your business.

It is an annual report and, if set up correctly, will show you how cash will flow through your business throughout the current financial year.  I’ve been using a Cashflow report in my business for many years and find it invaluable.  Just recently the chance to participate in a high-profile teleclass series came up, and because I have my financial systems in place, I knew straightaway that it was something I could take part in!

Step 1 – Create Your Cashflow Report

This is very easy to do using a spreadsheet.  Create a column that lists all of your expenses, i.e. office supplies, legal & professional fees, membership, advertising etc. and a column for each month of the year.  You will need to create formulae that will tell you your total income, total expenses, and subtracts the expenses from the income, and also carries forward any amounts from month-to-month.  This is so you can see how your finances are ‘flowing’ throughout the year.

Step 2 – Input Your Data

Taking your financial data from your bookkeeping system input your actual income and expenses, and list any projected expenses in the appropriate row/column.  Your Cashflow report will now show you at-a-glance any time periods for which you will need to be especially aware of.  For example you may have a lot of expenses in one particular month so you’ll know that the previous month you’ll need to make sure that you have the funds kept back in your bank account to take care of those upcoming expenses.

It will also show you if you can afford to make an investment in your business, whether that’s signing up for a new service or membership club, taking out an advertisement, or buying new equipment.

Your Cashflow projection can also be used as a budget planner.  You can plan out when annual memberships are due and put those in ahead of time.  You can also add in an amount for when your taxes are due.  This will provide you with a really good feel of how cash is flowing through your business, month after month, throughout the year, and you can also tell how much you can take off for owners draw, but still leave enough to cover the anticipated expenses.

Step 3 – Schedule In The Time

Now that you have your Cashflow report in place, it’s important that you update it regularly so that you can stay aware of how cash is flowing through your business, and take any actions necessary so that you have enough to cover all of your anticipated expenses.

I recommend scheduling in at least 30 minutes once a month to update this critical financial management report.

A Final Thought…

Having an annual Cashflow projection will provide you with all of the information you need so that you can keep on top of your business financially and know where you are.

If you have a bookkeeper taking care of all your financial records for you, ask them to prepare your monthly Cashflow report for you.

Where do you need help with your financial management system? Post in the comments below; I’d love to help.

© 2017 Tracey Lawton Training & Consulting LLC

Tracey LawtonAbout the author: Online Business Development Strategist, Tracey Lawton, teaches life coaches, business coaches, and virtual assistants how to become more organized, streamlined, and automated so that they don’t constantly bottleneck projects and processes. Having the right systems in place leads to consistent revenues, more clients, and less stress and overwhelm. Get your free Systems Checklist TODAY and see if you have all of your bases covered.

 

3 Simple Strategies to Get 3 New Clients in 30 Days

3 Simple Strategies to Get 3 New Clients in 30 Days

If you’re struggling to get more clients, there are three simple strategies that you can implement that will help.

But, more importantly, taking consistent, daily action is the real answer to getting more clients.

I’ve had many conversations with business owners these past few months who are, quite frankly, really struggling with their businesses:

  • They have little to no clients.
  • They’re not making the income they need just to pay the bills.
  • They’re barely keeping their heads above water.

When faced with this situation, there’s really only one thing they can do – and that is focus on getting new paying clients.

Maintaining a good cash flow is at the heart of building a successful business; therefore your focus needs to be on getting clients who are willing to pay for your services.

The only way you can do that is to work with clients who will pay you for your one-on-one services.

Therefore they should forget about:

  • Updating their website.
  • Spending their time on launching a new product or program (if you’re struggling to fill your practice with one-on-one clients, you will struggle to fill your programs).
  • Putting together a telesummit or other major list building event.

Yes, these are all great things to do, but short-term, the focus really has to be on getting paying clients – this is the single, fastest way to improve your cash flow.

Here are three simple strategies that you can easily implement so that you can get three new clients in the next 30 days:

1.  Follow-up with past clients. If you’ve had some success in your business and have worked with a few clients over the past 12-18 months, then take some time to:

  • Check back in with them and see how they’re doing.
  • Ask them if there’s anything they need any help with.
  • Update them on what’s happening in your business.
  • If they’re local, offer to reconnect over coffee.

One of the biggest mistakes you can make in your business is to forget your past clients and not touch base with them again.

2.  Connect with “warm” leads. How about those conversations you had with potential clients that said “no” or “maybe” to your services? Go back to them and, following the example above, reconnect with them.

Chances are they’re in a different place than they were when you last spoke and they may be ready to work with you this time around.

3. Attend in-person networking events. Connecting with people face-to-face is one of the best ways to meet new clients/potential clients.  Whilst the person you may be speaking with may not be an ideal client you never know who they know.

So when you meet someone at a networking event, never try to sell to them. Get to know them first, build the relationship, and make sure the conversation is about them. And ask them, “who do you know who…” and see if they can offer you any referrals.

When you take consistent steps, day in day out, that’s when you’ll start to see results in your business.

And these steps I’ve shared with you are all very simple to implement – no complicated technology involved!

So, create a daily action plan outlining exactly what you’re going to do every day for the next 30 days to get three new clients.

And work that plan!

Where are you struggling to get more clients? Share in the comments below; I’d love to help.

(c) 2017 Tracey Lawton Training & Consulting LLC

Tracey LawtonAbout the author: Online Business Development Strategist, Tracey Lawton, teaches life coaches, business coaches, and virtual assistants how to become more organized, streamlined, and automated so that they don’t constantly bottleneck projects and processes. Having the right systems in place leads to consistent revenues, more clients, and less stress and overwhelm. Get your free Systems Checklist TODAY and see if you have all of your bases covered.

 

Test, Analyze, Course-Correct

Test, Analyze, Course-Correct

The month of January has just flown by — I feel we were just celebrating Christmas and poof! it’s the end of January!

One of the reasons I think is that (as well as a trip to San Diego) I’ve been knee-deep in a client’s launch campaign for one of her online training programs.

We’ve also been testing several different marketing strategies too to see what works best.

That’s one of the big advantages of an online business … if something isn’t working out as you’d hoped, you can easily course-correct.

This is some of my favorite work to do, and I love to help my clients figure out the system they need to get set up to make a launch campaign run smoothly.

So, as you’re busy planning out your next big launch, keep these three stages in mind:

  • Pre-launch: this is where you do all the major planning and strategizing and usually takes several weeks.
  • Launch: this is where you launch your event/program and is a relatively short time-frame.
  • Post-launch: once the initial launch phase is over, you want to ensure that you continue to get more sales, especially if it’s for a product that will be available over the long-term.

You can read more about these different stages here.

And, as always, if you have questions or comments please post below.