4 Steps: When you have TOO MANY good ideas for how to help your clients
Updated: Oct 17, 2021
Is this you? You are showering and your brain cannot turn off. It's on hyper-drive, thinking of all of the ways that you could help your client with your personal brand or small business. You have notebooks of ideas and your heart is in the right place, because you want to be truly helpful, you want to offer a unique service, you want them to have essentially no choice but to pick you out of the crowded market because your offerings are SO amazing. These are all the sign of someone damn passionate about their work, and who is going to put their whole heart and soul into helping their future clients. That's amazing stuff to have going for you as a business owner.
However, it can also completely overwhelm you to narrow all of the possible directions to go in, to test them out on actual humans before you launch, to figure out how to market them all, to attempt a soft launch to see if anyone actually signs up, etc. Gah, I've totally been there! It's draining. You mean so well, but no "aha!" moment has helped you narrow down the ideas yet. And, you just keep adding new ideas every day. You know it's got to stop or you'll be stuck in brainstorm mode forever, or worse, you'll keep wasting time and money going in directions that don't work out.
You, my friend, need a brand STRATEGY! Start small. Lock in on one thing, and do that really, really well, before adding more services.
So, how to lock in on one thing?
Figure out WHO your brand is with crystal clear clarity. Brand archetypes are a great way to start that process if you're new to the concept of crafting a brand identity. I offer affordable brand identity coaching sessions, where we can DEEP dive into defining your brand. Having clarity on your brand identity enables you to know the language, tone, imagery, goals, and ideal audience that you should be speaking to. Then, it's much easier to pare down all of those really great ideas in your head. Trust me, it 100x simplifies your email writing, blogging, social media outreach, marketing, etc! and provides us with a clear direction to take your brand session to make it stand out from the crowd. This step just sets up the human-like identity of your brand, NOT your offerings. Are you peaceful and natural like Dove soap? Are you edgy and rebellious like Harley-Davidson? Are you hilarious and fun to be around like Flo from Progressive?
Define WHO is ready to use your general services TODAY. Your ideal client shouldn't just be someone in a certain demographic that likes the aesthetic that you have. Your ideal client should be someone who is coming to your personal brand or small business because they need you NOW, and they have a lot to gain from working with you.
Find real people in that ideal client profile, interview them, and let THEM define what their biggest need is. You don't get to define what they need. They do. And you should be offering whatever of your great ideas can address THAT specific problem. Maybe they'd never actually use 60% of the great ideas you have. Good to know. Table them. Try to interview 100 people who are somewhat related to the business you want to build (peers, suppliers, clients, marketing people, etc). Crazy to go for 100, I know. You may be surprised what the biggest needs out there are. Ask open ended questions like "what keeps you up at night about your business?" "tell me about your last experience with ___" Do NOT say "I'm thinking of offering Service A or Product B. Would you purchase that?" That will skew their honest answers.
Build your business in the voice of your brand. Be consistent. Be bold. Use it in the way that you write, the images you use (hello, DFW brand photography session!), the way that you market... everywhere! Select your #1 top offering that would best address what they said that their #1 problem was. That's it. Go to town on addressing that specific pain point that they have.
In summary, you should NOT be brainstorming "Hmmm, what kind of really cool and unique services can I offer that will have people lining up to work with me?" It should be "I know specifically WHO my ideal client is, I've interviewed as many of their warm bodies as I can, so I know that _____ is their #1 problem that I can help with. So, hmmm... what kind of really cool and unique ways can I address that specific #1 problem?" Now, go finish that shower.