Sourced from a wide spectrum of people and their experiences.
Are you someone who is not able to kick-start your business even after putting in your heart & soul into it? Is your business not able to take flight?
Well, don’t stress. Just like many other fellow entrepreneurs, you’re also most likely not doing a few things the right way.
Generally, when people start a business, they tend to make a few mistakes. It’s part of human nature. In this article, I am going to discuss 6 things, which, if done the right way can help kick-start your business as you’ve always wanted. This article will be useful for anyone who is running/in the process of starting up a business.
Funda #1 – Selecting your niche
People often go wrong in this very funda.
While selecting your niche, you need to ask yourself 3 important questions.
Do I possess the talent & skills required to accomplish my mission?
Does the market actually require my service/product? Will there be demand?
Do I have the passion and commitment it takes to emerge as the one & only authority in my field?
If your answer to all three of these questions is “YES”, congratulations, you have found your perfect niche.
Funda #2 – True Marketing
Successful marketing involves creativity, but is predominantly based on science. It starts a long way before the creation of the product, starting with understanding the customer and their needs. This results in creation of a product that perfectly fits the customer’s requirements, known as Product-Market fit.
Many entrepreneurs make the mistake of coming up with a product without doing the necessary “Needs analysis”. Needs analysis gives you clarity on the necessity of the product at ground-zero level.
In addition, you need to perfect the art of sending the Right message to the Right person at the Right time. This helps you attract customers to your business almost effortlessly.
Healthy communication with existing customers also needs to be maintained to retain them as your customers for life.
Building trust with maximum number of clients is the best way to gain word-of-mouth publicity for your business, which is proven to be the best channel of marketing ever.
One should always strive to maintain the quality of the service/product as the happy customers become your brand ambassadors in the future.
The way you market your product/service to the customer visually has a huge impact on the perception of the product in their minds.
The need of good & intense marketing reduces as time passes and a brand name is built. Beyond this point, the brand speaks for itself.
Funda #3 — Crystal Clear Communication
You get people’s attention when you can get across what you actually mean, without dilution, into their minds. Good communication does not only mean good vocabulary or grammar, rather it involves the simplest language and joining a conversation which is already present in people’s minds. For example, an article with a title which reads “How to help solve the Oxygen Crisis.” would effectively help in giving people an answer to the already lingering question in their minds.
In order to market well, you need to understand your target audience very well. This can be achieved by communicating well with your audience. This skill can be improved by writing a LOT, as it gives more clarity by slowing down your thought process. The more you write, the better you can speak.
Funda #4 — The Customer Graduation System & CATT Funnel
The Customer Graduation System is a method of segregating your customers into different categories based on the duration of their association with you.
In the above chart, on a scale of 0–1, 0 being the least time spent and 1 being maximum time spent knowing each other, we see three categories of customers, i.e Cold, Warm and Hot customers.
CATT(Content, Attention, Trust & Transaction) Funnel is the method of converting a stranger into a customer for your business.
Cold customers are the people who do not know anything about who you are and what you do. They become your Warm customers when you reach out to them with your free Content and gain their Attention & Trust over a period of time. Once a person is your Warm customer you can easily offer your paid product or service to them and can engage in a Transaction. Hot customers are the people who have bought from you in the past, your job is to keep them engaged and up-to-date with your offerings.
Given below is a straightforward formula which equates the Wealth you make to your selected Niche, amplified to the result of your Content, Attention, Trust & Transactions.
Wealth = niche ^ CATT
Funda #5 — Personal Branding
No matter how many people master a skill, the best known will always beat the best. Always remember that it is part of human nature for people to connect with a personal touch.
Your goal should always be to become the authority in your particular field of expertise. Deciding where to compete is half your success. If you cannot be a leader in a particular category, pick a sub-category and be one. For example, both Apple Inc. & Samsung are competitors when it comes to smartphones, but because Samsung is a pioneer in manufacturing OLED screens and Apple believes in quality, they are forced to procure screens from Samsung.
Enter a competitive market, but have a unique angle, do something out-of-the-box.
Lastly, even though a personal brand can give rise to many brands, it cannot be sold or invested in.
Mass Trust Blueprint
The evolution of a personal brand takes place based on this framework. It is an iterative process.
It involves picking up new skills, putting these skills to work, writing and letting the masses know about them, consulting the masses on how to use these skills to their advantage, mentoring them on perfecting the skills which will also help you scale your understanding to a whole new level & starting up something on your own using those skills. Once you feel that the skills/what you have started up has reached a saturation point, restart from the beginning with a set of new skills.
This process helps identify you and your personal brand as the authority in a particular field.
Funda #6 — Types of marketing
You should spend your money, time & effort on marketing methods which would bring you a good return on investment. The best way to ascertain this is to compare the methods and see what suits your budget.
Does not use the digital medium to communicate a message. Instead, majorly makes use of printing.
- Impactful and easy to understand
- Long life
- Easy to memorize
- Hard to measure
- No direct interaction
Majorly uses the Internet as a medium to communicate a message.
- More engagement
- Insights/Measurable data
- Can become annoying
- Cause of privacy concerns
- Short Life
Mainly uses the TV and radio as mediums to communicate a message to the masses.
- Massive audience reach
- Trusted media outlets
- Linked to the internet
- Extremely competitive
- Dying medium
If your target audience has access to a computer/phone and a good internet connection, Digital marketing is the best & most economical way to get your product/service across to them. This involves making use of social media, google/facebook ads, SEO, etc.
In addition, if your budget is huge, in order to reach a wider audience, you can make use of traditional marketing methods like TV, Newspaper and radio advertisements.
As a rule of thumb, you should always run direct response marketing campaigns as they enable direct interaction with the target audience and help keep track of the statistics involved in the campaign. This can be done both in digital & traditional marketing techniques. When we provide an action to be performed by the target audience in the advertisement, it becomes part of a Direct response marketing campaign. For example, when we provide a contact number in a newspaper advertisement, it is a type of direct response marketing, because we get a response directly from the prospect.
Integrated Digital Marketing
It is a marketing framework which drives the CATT Funnel.
Free content forms the core of the framework. A set of digital marketing tools like paid advertisements, email marketing, social media & SEO bring in audience/traffic to this content. As time passes and the trust is built, paid products and services can be sold to the loyal following through the free tools like email marketing, social media, etc.
We discussed the basics of marketing, selecting a niche, importance of good communication, the various types of customers and how to acquire them, types of marketing and the importance of personal branding and mass trust. Make sure these 6 fundas form the core of your business and see the magic happen right in front of your eyes.
Would love to know if these 6 fundas made sense to you and if you have any other fundas put them in the comments.