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Personal Branding, Podcast

Your personal brand & business journey: what to focus on when

There is a LOT to building a successful brand and business… and it feels like it all needs to happen at once. So in that confusion and overwhelm, entrepreneurs tend to get a lot of shiny object syndrome, pouring tons of time and energy into activities that seem important — while *actually* important activities (you know – the ones that generate revenue?) get overlooked.

In today’s episode we’re going to tackle this all head on. Starting with the 8 biggest mistakes I see early stage entrepreneurs making in their brands and businesses.

And once we’re through that, I’m going to talk about the 3 phases of business (getting started, building momentum & scaling) and the activities and “deliverables” you actually need for your brand and business.

Get your notepad out because this one moves fast and covers sooo much. Enjoy!

WANT MORE?

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Get all the deets here: 
https://personalbrandingproject.co/shp/Oh and here’s where you can grab a copy of my free In-Demand Brand Blueprint where I break down my framework for building your profitable personal brand.

👉🏼 https://personalbrandingproject.co/blueprint

Read the full transcript 👇

You’re listening to Episode 31, your personal brand and business timeline, what to focus on? When. So this is a pretty big topic. And I actually admit that I was originally going to do this as a training just for my paid students and clients. But then I was like, you know what, that’s not fair. I think this is such an important thing to hear at the moment, because I know I do have so many people in my audience who are either side hustling, maybe you’re planning a business, you’re in that first year to two years where things maybe feel a little bit dicey and stressful and overwhelming. And I just want to bring a little bit of clarity to the journey by kind of giving you a bit of a timeline, not so much of what to expect, because all sorts of things can happen. But what you need to actually be focusing on at different times through these three different phases, I’m going to break down so that you can feel confident that you’re pouring your energy and your time and your resources into the right things to get the best possible results based on where you’re at. Sound good. Well, let’s just dive in. 

Welcome to the personal branding project. I’m your host, Kat Elizabeth, an actor and personal branding coach who is obsessed with helping creative entrepreneurs like you build personal brands that change your life for good from attracting bigger opportunities, more joy and freedom in your life. And the ability to get paid to do the things that you love most. Each week, I’m bringing you inspiration, practical advice and the occasional dose of tough love. So you can stop dreaming and start doing what it takes to make those dreams a reality.

Welcome back. I am so honored to be inside your ear holes again this week. Thanks for being here. You’re in for a treat! Well, I think so anyway, this is a pretty juicy episode, it’s definitely been requested in the past, following some free training I did inside of my free Facebook group, which by the way, if you’re not a member, I will include the link in the show notes. But if you search for Become an In Demand Brand, I know that’s a bit of a mouthful, on Facebook, you should find it. Okay, so here’s the deal. I’m creating this episode, because there is definitely a lot of confusion about what we should be focusing on at what part of our business journey. And also because I feel like so many people kind of separate business and brand development and act as if they’re two completely different journeys. I think that’s also where some of the confusion comes in. So what I wanted to do today is really break it down into three sections of the timeline. So what I’m calling them is getting started, building momentum, and then scaling. Okay, so I mean, I’m really speaking, by the way, in regards to service based businesses who may potentially then also want to offer some sort of productized offering as well. launching a product based business is a different thing. But obviously, I mean, we’re talking about personal branding here. So I’m assuming there is a good chance that you have some sort of service based business. And look, even if you don’t, if you have a product based business and you’re using your personal brand to like you’re leveraging your personal brand to build it, there is still so much to be learned from this, there’s going to be some little differences. For instance, like you’re not actually looking to land clients, you’re building a customer base. 

Anyways, we’re going to break down this timeline and really look at the key activities and the, I guess, deliverables that you need to be focusing on achieving at each point in that timeline. But then, before we even get to that, I want to break down some mistakes, I thought it was gonna be like three biggest mistakes. I have a list of eight, eight mistakes that I wanted to call out first, just to flag them with you in case this is something that might be currently tripping you up. Because I am noticing, observing lovingly, a few of you know some people within my community that I’ve noticed getting stuck on these things. So I just wanted to bring it all up so that we can just be like right let’s not make these mistakes. Then let’s get back to the plan, which is the rest of the episode, these three phases we’re going to talk about so I hope you’re excited about this. I would love it if you enjoy today’s episode, if you’re just enjoying the podcast in general I would be so grateful if you would leave a review a written review with five stars to tell Apple podcasts that you know I’m doing a good job it really helps with the algorithm and helping the podcast get found. And if you don’t listen on Apple, you can actually leave a review. Well, you could always screenshot this and share it to Instagram stories and tag me @iamkatelizabeth. Right. That’s all of the fine print out of the way, let’s dive in to the biggest mistakes that I really see people making earlier on in their branding and business journey. 

Okay, number one, I have to go straight to this one, spending oodles of time working on your website. Yes, websites are wonderful tools. But if we spend a week to three months, I’m going to say it’s how long I’ve seen people spending on websites only doing that and not focusing on all the other like revenue generating activities that you need to be doing. Like you’re already killing your business, you’re sabotaging your business before you begin. Now we’re going to talk about websites in the actual timeline. So I’m not saying that you’re not going to be working on your website. But please know that spending weeks on end, doing nothing, but working on your website is not a good idea. 

Okay, number two, getting a logo designed as like the first thing that you do for your brand or business and then just like launching off the back of having a logo. So you’re like got these pretty graphics, you’re out there and you’re like, I’ve got a business look at my business name, like look at my logo, but you haven’t figured out any of the other stuff like you have no plan behind it. You don’t know really what you’re going to be selling, how you’re going to sell it, how you’re going to market yourself any of those things. So please let’s focus on other strategies to nail down for the launch. And make the logo the cherry on top. 

Number three, waiting until everything is perfect to launch. Oh perfectionist in the house, give me a hey oh. Okay, let’s be honest, right now, I think I mentioned this a few episodes ago. Perfectionism is an excuse. It’s keeping you small. It’s keeping you hidden. It’s keeping you stuck.

Okay? Launching a business is not meant to be pretty and polished and perfect. It’s meant to be messy because there’s so much that you won’t know when you launch and that is okay. Oh my goodness, I was a bull in a china shop when I was launching my copywriting business I made so many mistakes. And guess what you’re getting to benefit from that because I now use those mistakes as a teaching tool. Okay, mistakes won’t kill you, waiting way too long to launch to the point where you just like you can’t even support yourself anymore. That is a problem. Okay, so can we just roll up our sleeves, get our hands dirty and just know that this is not about perfection, we are never going to be perfect. We just need to get things out there. 

Okay, Mistake number four, spending ridiculous amounts of time developing your freebie. I have been guilty of this in the past. But I will tell you that my current freebie, believe it or not, was like I created in record time doesn’t make it lower value. Like I believe there’s plenty of value in there. I mean, you tell me you can go to personalbrandingproject.co/blueprint. But basically, if you’ve done all of the foundational work, for instance, building out some sort of framework for yourself a methodology, something that makes you unique, like you really know what it is you’re offering your client, you understand what that endpoint is like what the client journey looks like, then you can throw together and I say throw I mean with love and care, but like really quickly, you can build a free offer, freebie, lead magnet, whatever you want to call it, that will be really effective. And look, there is also a school of thought that says don’t even offer anything free. And that is very valid as well. Like if you don’t want to freebie you could go straight to a low cost offer. But the problem here is spending all this time on the freebie because it is not the actual money making activity, okay, getting people on your list and then being able to sell to them that can make you money. So really, then we need to quickly get the freebie out there and start building the email list and writing the emails that are going to sell if that’s your sales strategy. 

Okay. All right. Number five, I’m having to move fast because there’s so much to talk about today, getting caught up in growing your email list before you’ve even started landing clients. Now I know that this is a really common thing because we’re all told like you need an email list you need an email list and look in time an email list will serve you especially if you end up wanting to launch things like one too many productized services, you know those kinds of things. But really if you have a service based business, you can make money without an email list. Okay? I did not have an email list the entire time I was a full time copywriter and I was always booked out. I think it was like four years that I only did copywriting before I started bringing on, you know, trying out online course creation. And I had no email list, and yet I made good money. Okay, so please, if it’s client service based clients that you want, please, if you’ve got limited time, don’t be pouring that precious time into growing your email list if you don’t yet have a full load of clients. Okay. 

All right, number six, creating a course before landing clients, oh, my friend, I kind of made this mistake. I didn’t realize I was making it because I’d had clients for so many years, but then I wasn’t making the connection that like the course that I was creating had nothing to do with my clients. So therefore, I didn’t have a customer base. So I launched a course out of the blue teaching makeup, and I had no email list for this. And it was a terrible launch. I mean, I could have persisted with it and I could have ended up launching again and again, again, and making money eventually, like good money from this course, because it was a wonderful course. But ended up not being the thing I wanted to do. But what I’m focusing on right now is the mistake. If you need clients, like if you need to pay the bills, creating a course right now is probably the slowest way to make money. Because to sell courses, you need traffic, you need an audience. And if you don’t have an audience, you’ve got no one to buy them. But if you are ready to go, you have services that you can offer straight away. And when I say services, I mean anything like done for you could be, you know, where you actually build someone’s website, design them a brand. You know, it could be your realtor or mortgage mortgage broker or something like that. Or it could be consulting, coaching services. You know, there’s variations of what service based businesses look like today. But if you are ready with that service ready to go, then we just need to get you the quickest path to getting clients. And that is not an email list right now, okay, and email, this is a nice to have something you can totally do if you’ve got the time. But it’s not the key to getting your money today. 

Alright, another mistake number seven, creating too many offerings. Okay, so you get very excited about all the things you can potentially do for people. So you can create all these offers. And then you get yourself completely overwhelmed and confused about what you offer, you get your audience super confused about what you offer. And instead of pouring your energy into selling one thing, and like streamlining it, having systems and templates to make it just so easy on your end to manage, you’re just juggling things, you’re confused, you’re doing too many custom quotes like it all over the shop. Okay, so really, you don’t need many offerings at all, a lot of people have met a lot of money with just one offering, I found the majority of money that I made as a copywriter was just writing, SEO website copy. And that was it. And so eventually, I took way too long to figure this out. I used to quote separately for everybody, and then realized hold on like this is unbillable hours. So then I ended up creating packages and I had like three tiered packages for my copywriting offering for websites. And it just made life so much easier because I found most people fit into one of those three. And look, if they absolutely did not suit and they needed something else. I just tweaked one of those packages, but still I had everything ready to go like my proposals were ready to go, I knew my pricing. You know, it was straightforward. So please don’t think that more offerings means more money, it’s actually generally the complete opposite. 

And another mistake, this is another one that I’ve made. Number eight, only showing up for your audience during a launch as in completely disappearing, radio silence, and then you decide Oh, I need to launch something and then suddenly you show up and then you start selling. Not ideal. Okay? If you really if you’re going to be someone who does launches, and that could be a launch for anything like your availability, for VIP days, for photoshoots, you know launches to get on your waitlist or launches for actual programs and things you need to be planning and seeding those way in advance so that when you do show up your audience’s expecting it they used to hearing from you all the time you’ve been offering value. They’re just ready for you. They’re not just like, oh, great here she is just selling me something when she’s been silent for the last three months. So yeah, I’ve made that mistake in the past and I get it I get how challenging it is. Business is time consuming. And when you’re maybe juggling clients and the thing like your marketing and what you want to like maybe you’re creating something While you’re managing clients like that’s something I’m often dealing with is like I’m copywriting for some people, I’m coaching other people, I’ve got my programs, and then I’m building out like a new course, there’s only so many hours in a day. But I’m just telling you right now that like it, that could mean that you just maybe you need to push a launch date back, maybe maybe you need to change the way you schedule your week, so that you’re still showing up consistently for your audience. Because if you are planning on launching something, you’ll launch success, unless you’re just relying 100% on a cold audience and ads it, you know, you are going to notice that you don’t get the same results if you just show up to your audience and they’re cold. Okay? 

Whoah, okay, so that was the eighth mistakes. So I’ll quickly recap, hopefully, you wrote them all down. So spending too much time on your website, using a logo to like, basically launch your business without any of the foundations, waiting till everything is perfect to launch, spending ridiculous amounts of time creating freebies, or even one freebie, trying to grow your email list before you’ve actually landed clients, creating a course before you’ve actually landed service based clients, creating too many offerings, and then only showing up your art for your audience during a launch and not before. 

So one thing I will say don’t feel bad, like don’t feel bad about if you’re making any of these mistakes. Be glad that you heard me talk about them and maybe you can course correct. Also, I’m about to dive into our three sort of phases of, you know, building your brand and business, I don’t want you to feel bad if I’m talking for instance, we’re going to be talking about the Getting Started stage. Don’t feel bad if you skipped any of that, like you’re not getting started your way along the journey and there are things that you missed. We all do that. Okay, I’ve learned so many of these many of these lessons the hard way so many other business owners have to. This is me being able to finally reverse engineer things and be like, hold on, if I done this, this, this, this and this and this order, it would have gotten me to the next stage so much faster.

So this isn’t about shaming, or you know, like, I’m not here going, you’re a bad business or No, I’m just going look, this is the ideal. If you’re very early in the journey, and you get to hear this at this point in time. Yay. Really happy for you, because I wish I had this advice at that time. But if you’re further along, just be like, Oh oopsies missed that thing. Better go do it now. Better late than never, I say. 

Okay, so let’s talk about phase one, getting started. So this is when you are literally just in the process of wanting to launch your business, maybe you’re sort of like you could be in the planning stage. Or maybe you’ve already kind of told people what you’re doing doesn’t really matter. It’s still all that getting started laying the foundations. And I would say it’s common to be in this stage for like the first year. But if it’s a side hustle, maybe you’re there for a couple of years, you know, it can take longer, so no judging this. But hopefully if you get some of these things down in my speed you to the next stage quicker. Okay, so some key things you want to be doing. Number one is just find some support. Okay, so this was the biggest game changer for me when I was first starting my copywriting business. I found a community that I was able to join, it was a paid community, but it was very low cost. So even though I had no money, I was like, Okay, I can do this. And I was looking specifically for people who had already done what I wanted to do. So I was looking for people who had built successful copywriting businesses, so that I could model their success. Okay, so modeling is a style of learning. Like we’ve got book smarts, and street smarts, which is where you actually know. So the book smarts is all of the theory, street smarts is where you put it into action. Modeling is where you find someone else who’s already done it. And you can speed up the process by learning from their mistakes, like you listening to this right now you get to do some modeling of my own business. So find some support. If you don’t yet have the budget to actually join anything, then maybe see if you can find just a biz bestie. But I really would be looking for someone who’s more experienced than you. And you can pick their brain and so if you need to pay them or maybe even just take them out for lunch and just say, Hey, can I just ask you some questions while you eat the lunch that I’ve paid for you like that is still going to give you such a leg up because you can learn so much more from that sometimes then just like a basic, you know, online course at this stage in the business anyway. So that is one thing, find some support, not just for the practical stuff, but because it’s, it’s tough, you’re about to embark on a very challenging journey that can get a little bit lonely as well, if you’re, you know, working from home. So you’re gonna want some support on every level. So just find it. Another thing you’ll need to do is figure out what your offering is, what you are actually selling and keeping it as simple as possible, the thing that you can it’s like your minimum viable offering. I’m going to see you saying MVP a lot for this section, because it’s like how I can get up and running as quick and easily as possible, so that I can serve clients and get them some results. So you need to define what your offering is, define the pricing, figure out who it is for. So like in, which is kind of a separate point for myself here, but who you serve, like, who is this actually for? And it’s not just like people with businesses, like, we need to niche down a little bit and be specific about the problem that we’re solving, and who that decision maker is going to be. Okay. And then once we’ve done that, I want you to actually try and market to who you know, I know that sounds weird, like I’m here telling you, you know, like podcasts are great, and YouTube’s great, yep. But when you’re first getting started, go for the low hanging fruit. Who do you know? And if you need to offer a couple of jobs for free, or at a really low cost, saying, hey, like, I’m just getting started, let me get you some awesome results in exchange for a testimonial, then do it, whatever it takes, you may not need to do that you may not have to work for free. I know there’s many schools of thought on this. But to me, I think if you can get some happy clients under your belt and get some testimonials, you are off and running my friend. So don’t be stingy at the beginning, if you don’t have any social proof and people like I don’t want to pay you because you have no social proof, then fair enough. Just figure out if you can get some clients that really align with your ideal client avatar, and make them happy, you’re also going to want to get some processes down and some legal stuff. So you’re going to need some sort of agreement for when people work with you to cover your butt. Now you can get these online, they don’t have to cost a fortune, you don’t have to go to a lawyer. But generally, you’re trying to get it from someone who knows your industry pretty well. Like if you’re a photographer, try and find someone who offers, you know, legal stuff for photographers, if you’re an online course creator, you know, etc, etc. You know, some industries have that built in, you know, like mortgage brokers and realtors, like you’re going to have that as part of your thing. But for more creative industries, often there’s nothing, it’s all a blank canvas, which is wonderful and scary at the same time. So make sure you cover your butt with those basic, you know, legal type templates. And make sure you have a really basic proposal template, like it can just be in Google Docs, like that’s where mine started was just a PDF that I would send with my logo at the top and some basic details. And then I just broke it down like it was nothing fancy, but it won a lot of jobs. Okay, we can get fancier with it later on right now you just need the basics, okay. And if you are someone that has some sort of visual medium, you probably also want some sort of basic portfolio to go with that. So I’ve mentioned it before, I had no website for my first year. Was it a good idea? Who knows, but my good old PDF portfolio of my copywriting work did the job. So I decided that was my MVP, your MVP. MVP might be a website, that’s cool. But if you’re doing it, we want it to be simple. I want you to get it up and running as quickly as possible, find a template you already enjoy that you like. And just get the basics up there. You need a homepage, you need an about page, you need a services page, and you need a contact page. That is it. Okay? If you’re thinking about any business, no, not right now just land some clients and then get fancy. Okay. 

And then you’re going to have the same with your marketing strategy is like, Okay, what is the MVP for that? You know, do you think it’s gonna be the most effective for you to go on social media? You know, can you be networking, a lot of the time, it’s quicker to network in person. I mean, I know, depending on the current climate, you know, maybe it’s zoom networking. But sometimes it’s just a lot quicker to just build relationships that way and get clients directly. And if you’re going to use social media, it might be a bit more effective to go into Facebook groups than to be posting on Instagram. So you need to figure that out. Or if you need help, that is where I come in as well. We are breaking all of this down inside of my new Seen, Heard, Paid program. So let me know if you want the details. And there’ll be a link in the show notes as well. But you need to just figure out what is the bare minimum that you can do to get results without it all taking over your life. 

Something else you’ll want to do probably is that like, you are going to be DIY for a while. Okay? outsourcing is not generally a thing in your first year or so because you’re just trying to get some cash in the bank. And that is totally fine. So figure out is there anything that you need to upskill in in order to better DIY, okay. And so if it is that like you want to get really good at figuring out like LinkedIn, because you’re like LinkedIn is going to be where I need to do my marketing, then maybe you want to take a little LinkedIn course or something like that just so that you’re better equipped. So that’s what I’ll say on that. Now. The big ones, you need to land some clients. I know that sounds really obvious, but like that needs to be like once you’ve got these basic things down, you’re covered legally, you know what you’re offering and who to, you need to go out and find those clients and don’t think they’re going to find you, it just doesn’t work that way, you have to be putting yourself in front of them. So for me, I was getting a lot of referrals, I was able to submit myself for referrals in the copywriting group that I was in. But another way that is fantastic is just like pitching yourself, offering some sort of free offer and then just like putting it out there as you’d like to hop on a call with someone, and then get them on the phone and offer them something, it sounds really scary, because it is, depending on the kind of person you are, but like you need to land some clients. So figure out how to do that or again, come join me inside of Seen, Heard, Paid, not so subtle plug, and then part two of that is collecting testimonials. So don’t just get the clients and make them happy, make sure you have their words, and that they you know, they’ve signed off on them. You know, because once you can have proof that you can do this for a couple of people, it just gets easier and easier to land more people to work with. And then Part Three would also be setting up some sort of referral system with them. Okay, so that is getting started, I’ve obviously had to race through. 

So we can just move on to phase two, we’re gonna talk now about building momentum. So this is where you have like, you’ve got clients under your belt, you’ve got social proof you like pretty clear on like, what you want to do, and who you want to work with, versus who you don’t want to, like you’ve worked with enough people to like, not just know your ideal client, but also the person you want to avoid. Okay, so at this stage, this is where we want to refine your offer. Okay, so this is, you know, maybe now you’re like, cool, I’ve done a bunch of different kinds of jobs for different people, I want this to be my focus, and make it a signature offering and put most of your marketing efforts into that one thing, and making it super appealing and super simple for people to sign up to, and you’re gonna become known for that particular offering, you’re also going to need a visibility plan. So I talked about this in my, you know, in the In Demand Brand, Blueprint, pillar two is Getting Seen. So we need to now start growing your audience because at this stage, you’ve probably tapped out your immediate resources. So it’s like, Okay, cool. How are we going to grow your audience, all organic at this stage, I don’t recommend starting on ads, I mean, each to their own, but I just don’t think it’s necessary. And we just need to get you seen. We’re also going to develop your messaging. So you’re going to really dive deeper into Okay, like, how do I really connect with my people? How am I going to start really establishing myself as an expert in my space, you know, like thinking about thought leadership, what makes you stand out in a crowded newsfeed, because you’ve probably started noticing, there’s like a lot of competition, everyone seems to be offering the same thing. So what makes you different, let’s make sure that’s communicated, you’re probably going to develop your visuals further, I should have mentioned this in the first one, I totally skipped basic visual guidelines. That’s all you need. In Phase One, you do not need a logo, like you can really keep it simple. But now you’re probably starting to develop your visuals a bit more, making sure that your aesthetic is recognizable. So if you pop up in someone’s Instagram feed, if they land on your website, they kind of recognize you from a distance. And maybe you want to do your first personal branding photoshoot now, so you just look way more professional like maybe before you just had a headshot and that was enough because at least you could have that on LinkedIn and your about page. But now you want to look slick. So absolutely go book that brand shoot, you know that you’re in it to win it. Now, you’re also going to want to create some sort of content strategy for yourself, because it is going to make life easier offering that value. You know, and you know, your content strategy can be super simple. It doesn’t need to be on a million different platforms, there is always a way that can be in alignment with your capacity, your bandwidth, and the people you’re trying to reach, making sure it resonates with them too. But this is just a key thing that it just speeds everything up. You’re also going to want to set up systems and templates. So this is where I’m talking about like okay, like do you really have this down like your project management system? What are you using to make sure you stay on top of where you’re at with everything, you know you for you, it might be more of a CRM to track where people are at in the journey or it might be a bit of both templates like email templates, any templates that are going to make your life easier, like making sure project briefs are really refined, anything that you know you’re repeating should have some sort of system or template in place to save tons of time and also look way more professional at this stage. You’re probably also going to want to finally in I mean, I say finally it’s not been that long necessarily to invest in some sort of coach or group coaching program. So this is when I’ve spoken about this before but when I finally invested in that next level support where I had a mix of sort of like mastermind type support as well as some one on one support. That is when everything started speeding up like my trajectory changed. Like I went from plodding along and kind of being like high and low and all over the place to just like seeing this steady incline. It was incredible. So this is at that stage where you’re like, you’ve got the basics down, you know, you’re good at what you do you want to stick with this, now’s the time for that next level investment. Because how do you expect, you know, premium clients to invest in you, if you’re not prepared to invest in yourself like it’s simple as that, you’ll also probably want to get a bookkeeper, like start really recruiting your financial super team. So like an accountant and a bookkeeper. I’m not saying on staff, I’m saying they’re contractors, they’ve got their own businesses, and they just manage your stuff for you. You might also want to consider hiring a virtual assistant like so if you do have some sort of like, if you have a YouTube channel or a podcast, like if there is stuff that could really be made easier by outsourcing it to someone else, this is the perfect time. Don’t wait as long as I did. Major regrets there. You’re also going to watch your minimum viable sales funnel. Okay, I know that sounds scary. I like to just say it’s like it’s the profitable client journey. So this is what we just start to, you might have heard me talk about this  in the profit prescription, this is my framework for building out a sales funnel. But really, it’s just a client journey, really mapping out that entire journey from start to finish, like really figuring out how do I captivate my audience? How do I capture them, get to them to the next step? How do I connect with them, convert and then celebrate. So, you know, this is where we really start to maximize the opportunity of like, okay, what’s the next step for existing clients? Or how do we make it easier to capture brand new people into our funnel, and also at this stage, you should be raising your prices. I mean, you might have been doing it all the way along. But really, like, we need to make sure you are starting to make a profit. And if you really are amazing at what you do, you’re probably getting faster at doing it, you’ve got incredible social proof, we need to make sure your prices are actually reflecting all of that all of the value that you’re going to be offering your clients. So that is the building momentum phase. 

And finally, let’s talk about scaling. Now, I admit, I’m kind of I feel like I’m part way through this phase, but there’s still so much to come. But really with scaling, it’s like they’re scaling to six figures, there’s scaling to multiple six, they’re scaling to seven, this scaling to eight, it looks completely different all the way through, what I’m really talking about is that that earliest age of scaling a service based business or it might be like, we’re going to talk about, your offering may have evolved by now. So that you’re really setting yourself up to scale. And then obviously, you’re going to just keep setting new milestones based on what you want to achieve. You do not have to be aiming for seven figures, you don’t even have to be aiming for, you know, multiple sixes if you don’t want to, like this is up to you. Okay, I think it’s absolute bs that people are like, I don’t know, like just always going on about the six figures and the seven figures, it’s up to you, what do you want your business to bring you if it’s just time freedom, and you wanted to be able to pay the bills and have all this free time, then your goal is going to be different to someone who is like set on hitting seven figures. So just what that’s just a little aside. Okay, but it’s scaling. This is where we’re starting to think about, okay, we need to really be profit first year. So can we productize your offer. So making it way easier for people to purchase? And for the profit margin to be a lot higher, like less hands on? Like, how is it that we can leverage this? Or is it that you’re going to do like a one to many type offering. So you know, we might be going from done for you to done with you or maybe even DIY so when you’re creating a course or something like that. So there is no right or wrong here, you do not ever have to move to this stage. If you don’t want to, you might just put your prices up, you might move to more of a like a VIP day model instead of an ongoing project based model, but it’s just really figuring out what’s going to get me to where I want to be financially, time freedom, all of those things. It’s probably also time to finally yes, you’re allowed to now uplevel your website and brand identity like if you’re at that stage where profit is coming in and you want to think about what’s next. Okay, like invest in like a really nice website. Get a professional logo done for yourself if you need to, or like a super fancy personal branding photoshoot. Like you’re allowed to reinvest now you’ve done the time you’ve proven yourself. You may also want to invest in like your next level coach or mastermind like for me, I’ve just decided now I’m always going to have a coach, I’m always going to have multiple coaches, I’ll have to do an episode on all the programs I’m in that I’m just like one of those people that I’m like, well, of course I’m going to because it speeds up my growth. So it’s you know, you’re always going to be thinking about that once you’ve done it but there’s no going back. You’re just you won’t want to do it without, but anyways. 

We’re then going to look at automation. Can we automate your sales funnel can we you know, take your visibility strategy on autopilot. So, you know, we’re going to double down on SEO, you know, can we build out a really automated evergreen funnel for yourself so that you’re just like, you know, you’re potentially enrolling people or at least getting applications to work with you while you’re asleep. And maybe we’re going to incorporate some paid advertising now too because you just, you know, you’ve got the return, you know, that people convert, like if you get enough people through your funnel that people are buying, so therefore, you can justify that money at this point. You’re also going to look for more areas to outsource, like, how can we make sure that you are mostly just in your zone of genius, because the longer you spend out of your zone of genius, the more money it’s costing you like, if you know that your big, money making thing is like when you’re on stage, or when you’re taking photographs, then how can we make sure that you build out a team that is going to make sure that they take, they take the rest of least most of the rest of it off your hands? Everyone’s different with how much hands on stuff they want to do, there’s no right or wrong here. But I do know that if your week is full of activities that make you feel drained, exhausted, frustrated, not competent, like that is not a good way to spend your week, like we need to get you high vibe and you know, really just feeling like on fire, connecting with your audience and just doing what you do best. You may also want to hire a lawyer and start trademarking things. Like if you’ve got that signature process, if you’ve got a course name that you really want to trademark. There are so many things that this is all on my list right now. The trademarking thing, but that’s something to really start thinking about, I don’t think about doing it at the very beginning. Because like you if you pivot and evolve so much as a personal brand, especially I think, in those early couple of years. But really, the whole beauty of having a personal brand is you get to pivot and evolve as much as you want. So don’t go forking out a fortune for things that you’re not necessarily haven’t been proven yet, and you’re not sure you’re going to stick with it. Now, that’s not legal advice. This is just my personal advice, because I just know that funds are limited, especially in those early days. So we’ve got to spend them really wisely. And then once again, we’re going to make sure that your prices are on point. If you haven’t raised them in a while. If you haven’t made any made any adjustments to reflect the level of skill and experience you’re bringing to the table, then this is another time to reassess and it’s gonna be one of those things you’re always reassessing and in general, just always reassessing your offers going like is this the the best thing for me to be offering right now? Oh, my goodness, I feel like I’ve run out of breath. That was really, it was a lot to get through in a relatively short period of time. But I’m hoping you found it helpful. As I said, like, we can very easily skip so many of these steps. And we’re doing it all out of order. This is just the ideal, these are things we have to do at some point. So whenever you’re doing it is great. Just tackle it now. And hopefully also we’ve run through these mistakes. If you flagged any of those, you just get a stop in your tracks and you’re going to make an adjustment. 

But as I said, my signature framework, the In Demand Brand Blueprint, which includes like we talk about Get Clear, which is all of that What is your offering? Who is your audience? How are you going to stand out? And then they Get Seen, which is your visibility strategy. Get Heard? Which is that thought leadership. How do we stop the scroll, stand out in a crowded newsfeed type strategy? Get Paid, as in what is your actual sales strategy, like what’s the client journey and is it attached to some sort of sales funnel. And then the final step is Repeat which I mentioned on the last episode about metrics. So I teach all of this inside of Seen, Heard, Paid my new program, and you get the structured program, which is the actual self paced course along with 12 months of support of me and the community with live monthly coaching calls like and it’s at a bargain basement price because I wanted it to be really accessible if you are in one of those early stages and you’re like I cannot invest like crazy amounts of money right now in coaching, but I need something I need structure I need strategy I need support. So that is why I created this program. So you can go find out information it is open for enrollment right now. And if you go to personal branding project.co/shp for seen heard paid. You can find all of the details. 

I’m going to leave it at that. Thanks as always for listening and I look forward to catching you on the next one. Bye for now.

ABOUT KAT

Kat is a copywriter, brand & messaging strategist personal branding coach and the founder of The Personal Branding Project whose mission is to help you go from best-kept secret to in-demand brand.

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