You’re listening to the flourish and grow to CEO podcast. This is episode 23. [inaudible] Are you a lady boss making 50 to a hundred thousand in your business? And you’re ready to break through that six figure barrier.
Jane Garee (00:34):
Have you done a great job of creating a nice life as the ultimate gig master, but no, your inner CEO is calling you to greater Heights. You’re in the right place. If you want to create and implement solid fundamentals in your business without sacrificing fun.
Pam Ivey (00:48):
I’m Pam Ivey, I’m certified in small business management and I concentrate in the areas of training and certifying real estate assistance, coaching and mentoring entrepreneurs in online business, marketing growth and profit acceleration. And I take men and women business owners aged 40 plus to bucket list destinations around the world for a month at a time to work, explore, and live in community.
Jane Garee (01:14):
And I’m Jane Garee known as the sales strategist for the non-salesperson, and I work with business owners who want to increase their conversion rate, shorten their sales cycle and have more impact and influence with the work they do, all while having more fun with selling
Pam Ivey (01:28):
Welcome back, everyone. It is really hard to believe that we’ve already hit June and half of the year has already gone by, but this is a perfect time to review and a reflection of what’s taken place so far in your business and the plan and tweak for the remainder of 2021. So in this episode, we’re going to be looking at our flourish growth pillars, which are inner game vision and strategy branding and messaging, marketing, sales, leadership, and team and operation. But before we do that, Jane, let’s talk about the difference between growing versus scaling a business.
Jane Garee (02:07):
Yeah, this isn’t, these are terms that are kind of tossed around a lot, but I, I think really getting a very fundamental understanding of what they mean is pretty important. So growing a business can be thought of in linear terms, as a company adds more resources like capital technology or people it’s revenue will increase as a result. And that is the growth of the business. The company is growing and in revenue, the company is growing in people, the company is growing in resources. So that’s the definition of business growth. On the other hand, scaling a business is where revenue increases without a substantial increase in the resources. This is often done by streamlining systems and processes, which frees up time to focus on revenue generating activities. So in other words, growth requires a things put into place or added into the business. Whereas scaling is really more simplistic. It’s about getting where you’re going faster with actual revenue while simplifying the process and the resources to make that happen.
Pam Ivey (03:14):
That’s awesome. Now that we’ve outlined the distinction between the two, take some time to think about which one would be the best for you to focus on where you are right now, what stage of your business you are. So where are you going to focus on growth or scaling? All right, let’s jump into our review and we’re going to start right with the first growth pillar, which is inner game or mindset. So looking back on the last six months, do you think there’s been any trash talk or negativity going on in your head? That’s been holding you back from hitting your goals that you really want to achieve. Maybe you’ve been holding off creating a new program or going after that prized client, because you just don’t feel like you’re good enough. Or maybe you think I’m not good with money, or it could be something like, I don’t have enough experience, knowledge, or know how to launch that program.
Pam Ivey (04:08):
It is really time to retrain your brain and get it moving into more helpful and motivating thoughts instead. So here’s some examples of common limiting beliefs that, I mean, a lot of people have these, right? So how can you positively reframe them? If you remember our interview with Anita Heidema, our mindset expert. That’s one of the best ways to really do that shift in your mindset. It’s reframing and having affirmations that you really repeat over and over. Here’s an example. People’s opinions of me are more important than my opinion of myself. And I know this trips up a whole bunch of people. So instead of that think people’s opinion of me reflect their character, not mine.
Jane Garee (05:00):
Yeah. Or what about this one? I’ll get hurt if I let my real self be seen to that, to all get hurt far worse by building walls.
Pam Ivey (05:11):
Absolutely. Or I know I’ve said this one myself and I know Jane and I have said this together too. I’m just not motivated, but my way can turn that into I’m a dynamo I’m really motivated for the right goal. So you see how easy that is to really kind of just change the wording a little bit. So it it’s a positive rather than a negative, and we can change our mindset. It really takes time repetition and persistence to reframe those negative thoughts in your head, but keep actively replacing them with more positive thoughts and practice, practice, practice. And remember, don’t just take those thoughts at face value. They’re just thoughts. Just remember, they’re just thoughts. Not all thoughts are the, you know, Lord’s gospel. They’re not always true.
Jane Garee (06:12):
That’s funny, “The Lord’s gospel”. I lose this thing. I’ve been saying to myself recently over the past couple of months, which is my feelings aren’t facts. Oh my feelings aren’t facts. They’re, they’re their feelings. So I’m having a lot of feelings, usually as a result of some kind of lack of whack a story I’m telling myself. But since the brain cannot differentiate between what is an imagined happening and an actual happening, it exacerbates the feelings. And then it starts to feel like it’s a belief, which then therefore it makes me feel that it’s actually factual. And you know what, it’s not the gospel truth. It’s not factual at all. In fact, I have no idea what’s going on and they’re really just feelings that I’m experiencing.
Pam Ivey (06:51):
That is really a good example, cause I hadn’t thought of it that way. So that’s awesome. Moving on to pillar number two, which is vision and strategy, and we know that this is vital, right? We have to have goals in order to move forward and grow our businesses. So if you have created your vision and your strategy for this year, how on track are you? So do a little review and see how closely you are on track to meeting those goals, Kenya celebrate, or perhaps there are some tweaks you need to make to get yourself more aligned and ready to crush them the second half of the year. And if you didn’t create your vision for the year, it’s definitely not too late, not to fret. So let’s start right where you are reviewing your business with what we’ve been talking about and what we will talk about today. Set some goals for the remainder of the year and then make a plan to achieve them, but be sure to listen to the rest of this podcast before you complete your vision and strategy, we’re really sure it’s going to help, right?
Jane Garee (07:53):
Yeah. The third area to review is our branding and messaging growth pillar. Do you have a really clear description and handle on your ideal client or clients? And if you’re struggling here, have a listen to episode five of our flourish and grow to CEO podcast and also download our super comprehensive ideal client avatar workbook, which you can get for free on the page. The same page where episode five is on our website, which firstname.lastname@example.org. The website is not at flourish, but is the website is flourish.biz. This will help you get crystal clear on who your ideal client is. So you can create your branding and messaging to attract them.
Pam Ivey (08:32):
Another thing to review and consider for branding and messaging is definitely consistency. You really want to make sure that your messages and your visuals have a consistent look and feel say you post an image of your freebie on Instagram and it looks one way and your landing page where people sign up to get that freebie looks and sounds completely different. Many people conclude that they’re in the wrong place and they’ll just bounce off it’s what’s called scent and having a different voice or visuals will definitely throw people off. That sense
Jane Garee (09:06):
Also review your communications over the past six months. Is your messaging consistent or is it disjointed and all over the place? All of this can dramatically affect your bottom line. So it definitely pays to keep this in mind onto marketing. Many people have a system in place to nurture existing prospects or list members like a newsletter. Well, most don’t have anything they do consistently, but the thought is there. Think about this. Do you have anything in place for the first a and AIDAS, which we also talked about in episode five and stands for attract, interest, desire, action and satisfaction. Attraction is the art of drawing in new people. People who don’t already know you or what you have to offer.
Pam Ivey (09:50):
Jane and I were just talking about this. Say you want to launch a new program or a service, but sending out a promo email to your list as few tile, because those on your email list are either fans. You personally don’t have any intention of buying from you, or they’re already a current or past client that my friend is an exhausted list. And that’s why you have to be consistently working towards attracting new people to join your list. So build that list and community to get your offerings in front of those new people. And this might shock you, but you should be doing something every single day. And I mean every single day to build that list,
Jane Garee (10:32):
There are also some concrete metrics that you should be tracking under this growth pillar of marketing to ensure you’re making the right efforts. Let’s start with email marketing and talking about what you should be tracking and measuring. And you can get this data from your autoresponder host or your CRM, your open rate, just as it sounds. It’s the rate at which your subscribers open the email. You might’ve heard the money’s in the list. So if your people aren’t opening your emails, it means that you are leaving a lot of money on the table. Next is your click-through rate. This measures, how many people clicked on the links in your email? This feature is important because when you are promoting something in the body of your email, it’s not going to be enough for them to read that email. They actually need to click through to see your offer, what you’re offering or what you’re promoting.
Pam Ivey (11:21):
Next, you have to look at your conversion rate and this number represents the number of people who clicked on the link and then completed a specific action. It could be a purchase or to download something you offer. The next important metric to look at is your bounce rate. And this measures, how many subscribers, email addresses didn’t receive your email message, soft bounces. They track temporary problems with email addresses while hard bounces, track, permanent problems, like an email that no longer exists. If you have a high number of heart bounces, you may have a lot of fake email addresses or addresses with mistakes in them. Like they’re leaving off the G in gmail.com. It really pays to be diligent and scrubbing your list or removing unusable or undeliverable addresses. And I know I definitely had list envy, and I really like to look at the, the vanity numbers that they call them. I wanted to have like a million people on my list, but guess what? A million people only cost you more money with the majority of the CRMs or autoresponders out there. They charge, you know, for how many people you have on your list. And it’s doing you. No good. If they’re not opening it, they’re not reading it and they’re not taking action. So you really want to ensure that you have an engaged list of subscribers. So get rid of the vanity and the list envy.
Jane Garee (12:53):
Yeah, it’s so true. I know I did the same thing and I built up my list to thousands and thousands of people. But then when we went in and took a look at it, my team and I went in and looked, took a look at it. It was bounces galore and people who had an open things in years, and we got to get rid of all this because you really want to work with a community, which is all your list is it’s a community that you love them and they love you. And you’re really nurturing them and you’re providing them things that are of value. So you want to make sure that they’re reaching them, that they actually do find them valuable. And that’s, that’s a better gauge of your interaction with your community, not just what that top number says.
Pam Ivey (13:30):
Yeah, absolutely. And another gauge as you say, of how well you’re nurturing and how well you’re really resonating with people, of course is your number of unsubscribes. So a high number of unsubscribes can tell you a number of things like you might be attracting the wrong type of people to your list or your messaging is off. So all that these metrics do for you is they can help you fine tune, you know? Yeah. And finally keep track of your list growth rate. So it’s natural to experience some attrition. So focus on ways. As I said earlier, to continually grow that list every single day, the emphasis is there. I hope you can hear it. So you want to continually grow your list, engage your subscribers and find new loyal subscribers.
Pam Ivey (14:30):
Hey lady, boss, do you think like a CEO when your business starts taking off, you’re ready to scale up.
At this point, you’ve got to stop thinking of yourself as a solopreneur and start thinking of yourself as the CEO of your company. If you remain in the mindset of a one person operation, then you won’t be able to grow. You’ll never have the time, energy or expertise to do everything by yourself and your business. Won’t be the that it has the potential to be. So are you thinking like a CEO take our free assessment to find out you can find it at flourish.biz/think that’s F L O U R I S H dot B I Z forward slash T H I N K. All right, lady boss. Let’s get back to the show.
Jane Garee (15:24):
All right, now let’s take a look at important website metrics to monitor. You can find this data using a free Google analytics account. The first metric to look at is traffic. Specifically the number of people who visited your website, your goal shouldn’t be to increase traffic for the sake of growing that number. You want to attract a dedicated audience that supports your business goals. Next review your bounce rate. This is a metric of general engagement. If you have a high number of bounces or percentage to the number of visits, it means that people are landing on a page on your site and are leaving right away. There could be a number of reasons why this may happen. Like your site loads too slowly, and they become impatient. So they left or simply it just wasn’t what they were looking for. If it’s the latter, make sure your messaging is super clear and is aimed at your ideal client.
Pam Ivey (16:11):
Perfect. So next, take a look at your P the pages per session. This is the average number of pages that are viewed on your website per visit. So this broadly measures how compelling your visitors find your content and how easily they can find things. So your navigate to build a city. I don’t know that I think I’m close, but how well they can navigate around the site. So next, have a look at the percentage of new sessions, this measures, how many of your website visitors have visited for the first time? And really a good website will have a mix of new and returning visitors. Finally, for your website track the average sessions duration. This is the average length of time of all your site visits combined. This metric also shows how engaged your visitors are by how long they stay on your website, meaning how good your content is and how valuable they find it
Jane Garee (17:10):
Onto the next pillar, which is sales. This one’s pretty obvious, but has to be mentioned, track your sales revenue, understanding your revenue can give you important insights in your business. For example, you can determine if sales are higher during certain seasons, or if you see a trend in sales dropping off that way, you can adjust your marketing accordingly, then calculate your profitability or your profit ratio. This is easily done by dividing your net income by your sales revenue. A low profit ratio shows that you should be making an effort to put a push on sales or increase the price of your products or services. You also might want to look at lowering your cost. Ooh, good point. Another important area to review is the satisfaction of your customers. That’s why regularly surveying current customers or clients is another key activity in your business. If satisfaction is less than stellar, you know, you have work to do finally using a simple survey measure. What’s called your net promoter score. This measures the willingness of customers to recommend your business to others. So clients are asked a single question on a scale of one to 10, how likely are you to recommend the company to friends or colleagues? If the rating is less than 10, you should follow up to find out where you can improve.
Pam Ivey (18:21):
Yeah, that’s a super good indication and an excuse to get on the phone with your customers to really find out how you can up-level your service and drive up that score. So I love that another really important metric to track is your customer acquisition costs. This is how much it costs to get a new client for your business. So your customer acquisition costs is your total marketing expense divided by the number of new customers or clients. For example, let’s say you spend $5,000 on marketing during a quarter, and you got 10 new clients. That means your customer acquisition cost is $500 per client. Then keep track of the lifetime value of a customer. This lets you know, how much a client’s worth. So it’s really important to track to help you decide how much to spend on your marketing efforts. If your average client spend is a thousand dollars, you want to make sure that your cost to acquire that client is well below that number.
Pam Ivey (19:21):
If you work with clients on retainer, this is a super easy calculation, right? Simply multiply the average retainer price. By the average number of months, a client works with you. On the other hand, if you work with clients on a project basis, this is a little trickier estimating. The average number of projects you do with a client and the average cost of each project will allow you to come up with the average lifetime value. All right, we’re almost there the second, the last area to review falls under our leadership and team flourish, growth pillar. If you have a team or contractors or subcontractors, have you asked them lately, if they’re happy working with you, the offer space or a way for people to offer a suggestion, voice dissatisfaction or opinions, or is your head constantly down guilty while you’re working on your own client projects, even with a team of two, it’s important to start building a positive company culture. So when it’s time to grow, you’ll be able to attract the best talent to your team.
Jane Garee (20:24):
Now leadership goes beyond team to you personally reviewing the last half of the year. Have you allowed yourself time to just sit quietly and think, oftentimes we’re so busy with client work, busy work and putting out fires that you don’t make this a priority. And you’ve got to allow yourself time to do this. You’ll be surprised what originates from your brain. If you give it some quiet time, oh, also take some time to think about how many relationships you’ve taken the time to nurture over the last half year. Malcolm Gladwell wrote in the tipping point, that little things can make a big difference. And there’s also something known as the compound effect where little actions day by day, when you compound them at the end of a specific period of time, say six months. What you’re going to find is collectively your effort has compounded and has really paid off. When it comes to engaging with your audience online, a handful of influencers think ideal clients, leaders in their industry or yours can spread your message. Engaging with these influencers can exponentially multiply your leadership ability to get things done for your business,
Pam Ivey (21:28):
Right? The last, but certainly not the least growth pillar or area to review is your operations. If you remember our high-level description of this pillar, it’s all the things in your quote, unquote back office of your business that keep things running smoothly and making money. All right, so let’s take a look at revenue. And of course this is the amount of money a business takes in for sales before expenses are deducted often referred to as the top line item. It’s part of the calculation for most of our financial metrics. And you should be keeping track of this as it comes into your business in your online bookkeeping software like QuickBooks or wave, or even as simple Excel spreadsheet expenses, of course is a critical item to track. If your expenses are higher than your revenue, you’re headed for trouble, right? So drill down on your expenses, look line by line at where you’re spending it. If anything you’re spending on can be cut or reduced to lower your expenses.
Jane Garee (22:29):
If you’re like us, some shiny new program or software caught your eye. So you signed up, perhaps you could let it go if you’re not using it, or if it isn’t everything you thought it would be next, calculate your net income for the first half of 2021, your net income or net profit is simply the money leftover, after subtracting all of your expenses and taxes from your revenue operating cashflow is the lifeblood of small businesses and not having enough of it is the number one reason. Most small businesses fail, Revere your input and output and make sure you have ample cashflow to support your expenses.
Pam Ivey (23:04):
Absolutely. That is one of the number one business killers.
Jane Garee (23:08):
Yeah. Solid systems are key to growing or scaling your business. Do you have written or recorded systems in place for all of your repetitive activities? If not get busy, if you do review them for any gaps or updating that should be done. And you know, Pam, I don’t think enough emphasis is this, especially when you’re growing your business or your solopreneur with just a very small team. But what happens if you have to go out unexpectedly, there, there should be the process and system needs to be written down somewhere. So somebody can step in
Pam Ivey (23:40):
Absolutely. Or one of your team members get sick and somebody else has to cover, or you have to cover would be lovely to have a document where you can just pick it up and go step by step through the process. So it makes it so much easier. That was a lot of things that we need to be measuring and reviewing in our business to make sure that we’re on track for growth, but by reviewing and tracking on a regular basis, for instance, monthly, it won’t take a great deal of time. It’ll make sure that you’re able to keep your finger on the pulse of your business and that you’re able to pivot if needed to ensure its health. And so that you’re poised to grow or scale determining what you decided, the path that you decided earlier when we talked about that. So I know there’s a lot of things in there, but really once you do set them up in a spreadsheet or however, you’re going to keep track of these types of what they call KPIs or key performance indicators, it’s simply a matter of going in now and just adding the updated information. So it’s not a super time consuming thing on an ongoing basis, but it really is important so that you can track and monitor and make sure that you’re moving in the right direction. All
Jane Garee (25:01):
Right. Oh, I think we’ve dumped a lot of information on people. So you may need to go back and listen to this more than once. And really this is just about getting you into the good habits necessary to move from being a gig master what you hear us talk about a lot to a bonafide business owner, a gig master doesn’t really have a handle on all of this information because you just get up and do what you need to do that day to bring in clients, to bring in income, rinse and repeat. It’s a gig master. And you can, I mean, I don’t, you can get up to six figures doing that. You really can, and it’s sustainable. So the goal really is to move from that place of getting up and fighting for gigs every day, or trying to get gigs every day and then fulfilling that to running your business. Like it really is a business
Pam Ivey (25:51):
Well said, I love it. All right. So we hope that you can see how all of our flourish growth pillars are really interconnected. Each one plays off each other and each one is important to each other too. So make sure that you’re doing your reviews on a regular basis. And I do mine monthly. I don’t know about you Jane, but super important. It really helps me to, as I said, pivot, if things are, you know, taking a downturn, if we have pandemic on the horizon for any number of reasons, it can really help you know, where you are and be able to move quickly if you need to.
Jane Garee (26:32):
Yeah, absolutely. And you don’t want to be, I just got this visual pay off when you said pivot, cause I just watched the Fred’s or you did, you don’t, you don’t want to be like that scene where they were the move of the couch pack. No.
Pam Ivey (26:48):
All right. So that wraps up episode 23 of the Flourish & Grow to CEO Podcast. Until next week, have a great one and keep on flourishing. Bye everybody.
That’s a wrap everyone. Thanks for joining us this week on the Flourish & Grow to CEO Podcast. Be sure to visit our website at flourish.biz. That’s F L O U R I S h.biz, where you can subscribe to the shows in iTunes, Stitcher, or via RSS, so you’ll never miss an episode. You can also find our show notes and resources there too. And while you’re at it, if you found value in this show, we’d love for you to leave a rating on iTunes. Or if you’d simply tell a friend about the show that would sure help us out to now get out there and flourish!cessful business? That’s the question we want to answer for women business owners, so we can flourish and grow together from solopreneur to strategic CEO. Flourish and Grow to CEO is hosted by small business management certified, Pam Ivey and sales strategist, Jane Garee, who share their experiences in business ownership, sales and marketing to help women entrepreneurs scale their business and flourish confidently into the CEO role.
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