On this podcast episode, I’m going to go a slightly different direction. I want to talk about why your business is not working. In this episode, I’m going to ask you to do some self-reflection, go over these five key areas where I see failure and ask yourself, “Which one of these is causing my downfall and keeping me from where I could be going?” I’m going to hit the jingle and then we’re going to dive in.

All right. I talk to a lot of business owners. They reach out to me because they want their business to be more, to do better, et cetera. I love that. I love being in the growth business, but to be in the growth business you have to recognize the aspects of failures, the things that are going wrong. I want to talk about five things that I’ve seen, where people are doing things that are hurting themselves. Now, as I go through these, I want you to ask yourself, “Is this something that I need to address? Is this something that is personally affecting me?”

The first one, and this is the most common, not taking the appropriate amount of action. We know that big results come from big actions. All right? Now, it doesn’t mean long hours. It means big action. Let me give you a couple examples. You could spend a lot of time writing a blog and creating a video, et cetera, but is that really the action you need to take? Or is the action you need to take the big push of writing out a webinar, doing something that’s going to have a good evergreen content, writing a sales letter, et cetera? Sometimes the things that are the most comfortable for us, like blog posts, are not actually the things that we need to be doing.

Or maybe the thing that you like to do is go to networking meetings. I love networking meetings. I love being able to shake people’s hands, but is that really a good use of your time? Think about it. If you get 15 of the same people in the room all the time and you’re just kind of talking about each other’s businesses, there’s no masterminding going on. If you’re just sending a couple referrals back and forth every now and then, hoping that you’re going to get one, is that a good use of your time? Probably not, probably not. But it’s comfortable, it feels good. We see our friends, right?

I’m not saying don’t do that, but I am saying if you don’t compliment that with something else, if that’s your only excuse for networking, if that’s the only thing that you’re doing, then you’re not doing it well. You need to take an appropriate amount of action to build the business that you want. We’ll talk about some other things a little bit later on, but the appropriate amount of action usually looks like something that you’re going to have to do that’s uncomfortable.

The second thing that I see, and this hurts, penny pinching yourself to a slow death. Penny pinching yourself to a slow death. If you are in business for yourself and you’re investing in yourself, whether that’s through education, mentorship, et cetera, you’re going to slowly but surely die, because you have no one there by your side to help you wade through the different things that are happening in your business.

Now, I’m not saying you need a personal business coach to talk to. I know those are expensive, you may not be there yet. But it is so important to be around a group of people that can speak into your business, that are already where you want to be or even higher, so that they can help you navigate the waters of business.

Also, if you are penny pinching yourself on your advertising, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. If you are not spending money on ads, you are shooting yourself in the foot, because you’re not putting yourself in a position to win. I talk to some business owners and I don’t know exactly what they think is going to happen with their business, because they’re not spending money on ads, they’re not networking in the right places. I’m like, “Where are the clients going to come from?” and they don’t know. That’s why they call me. So I help them, and that’s one of the biggest things. One of the first things I help them with is ads. They have to be willing to spend.

The third and final thing where you penny pinch yourself to a slow death is not setting up some kind of affiliate system, or a referral system, or bonuses, et cetera. Then, depending on your business, I know that there are some restrictions around that, or maybe it get kind of weird, but if you do not reward the people that are sending you business that will eventually dry up.

What I mean by that is it doesn’t have to be cold, hard cash, depending on what you’re doing, but take them out to dinner, give them a gift, set them up. You can do things, depending on scale, big, small, et cetera, that will mean the world to them and help them and make them know that you appreciate them, you’re grateful. Don’t just write a letter, put something in there of value. When you don’t do that, you’re penny pinching yourself to death, because eventually those referrals will stop if they don’t feel appreciated and if they’re not getting something of value in return. By the way, one other thing that you could do is give them a referral on top of the gift that you’re sending them.

The third thing that I see businesses do that suffocates the life out of their business is not charging enough. Not charging enough for their services, not charging enough on the backend. In business, especially in the online world, we focus a lot on what I call the front-end business, which is that initial offer, but we don’t think a lot about the backend, right?

Now for me, when somebody comes in, I have some low-cost offers to get people in the door. Then, depending on the service and support they need, I just continue making offers to give them more and more support and service, so that I can help them reach their goals. Now, for you that may be something different. I was talking to an insurance agent, and I was shocked to hear that after people bought one thing from him his followup process did not include calling to see what else he can do for them, as far as other insurance products, other financial services, et cetera. He’s like, “I got the sale. I’m done.” I’m like, “No, the relationship has just begun.”

Once the person makes that first sale, it’s all about hitting them up again and getting more. For those of us that are in the service business, offering higher levels of service, support, warranty. For those of you that are in other businesses where the amount of sales that you can make is limited, like real estate, then we’re going to get into that in just a second. But there’s other things that you can do now that you’ve earned that person’s trust, where you can add another, where you can make more money.

The fourth thing that I see businesses do that are causing them to fail, is going it alone. Going it alone, doing it by themselves with no team, no network, no mentor, nothing. They’re just trying to read books to figure it out. Here’s the problem with reading books and not doing anything else. You read the book through your own lens of experience.

I’ll give you a simple example. The first time that I read Rich Dad, Poor Dad, the book by Robert Kiyosaki, which is groundbreaking and I highly recommend it, the first time I read that book I had no frame of reference for what the “Rich Dad” looked like. So when I read that book it didn’t really affect me. I was like, “Oh, that’s cool.” Some of the concepts in the book I understood, some of them fell flat. I had no one to talk to, no experiences to rely on. There was no mentor that I could look at and say, “Oh, that’s the Rich Dad,” right?

But now when I read that book, I get everything that Robert Kiyosaki was talking about in it. I understand the Rich Dad concept. I see the multiple streams of revenue, I get the investing in yourself, I understand how he bought his time. I get it now, but I didn’t before. There’s books that you can read, things that you can do on your own. I get that. I’m all about investing in courses, but if you go it alone, if you’re just trying to understand these concepts with the only frame of reference and the education and the experiences that you have now, you’re not going to get as much out of it as if you were doing it in a group with a mentor, et cetera.

I hope that makes sense. And I’m all about delegating. I talked about this a few podcast episodes ago. If you just do it yourself, you’re going to be stuck in the daily grind and you’re not going to be able to focus on the growth work, and that’s going to hurt your business in the long run.

Last, but definitely not least, relying on a single revenue stream will suffocate your business, because everything in business is cyclical. For me, I can look at my business and go, “Okay, in December and January I know that things are going to get a little slow when it comes to the agency side of things,” right? So when it comes to people coming to us and saying, “I want a new website,” or, “I want to funnel an ad campaign,” it’s a little slow in December and January because Christmas is coming. Then after Christmas they’re slowly ramping up into January, they don’t really want to talk about new campaigns. I understand that.

After suffering through that for a few years, I realized that I needed to change up what I’m offering in that time period. I need to work on offering some coaching, or I need to just focus on building courses, or make different, unique offers.

Now, I have multiple revenue streams and I recommend the same for you. It doesn’t matter if your business is something like real estate or insurance. You can offer other things. You can get involved in a multi-level marketing company, you can look at affiliate marketing, you can come up with a referral relationship. I love this guy, there’s a real estate agent that I know, every single time he talks to somebody, every contact that he makes, he refers them over to a solar guy, and if they buy a solar he gets 500 bucks. He takes that 500 bucks referral bonus as people buy, puts it in a savings account for when things get slow and he needs money for a rainy day.

The dude is smart. He understands that he built the relationship with the client, the client knows him, trusts him, and is willing to take an appointment with the solar guy, if they’re not super opposed to solar. He’s building his revenue streams based on the trust that he’s already created with the customer. You need the multiple streams of revenue so when things get slow, when things are not going the way, when cycles hit, we all know they do, it’s seasonal, cyclical, the economy goes up or down, we have that other stream.

I’m here for you. I want your business to grow. If you would like to come under my mentorship and if you’d like me to help you with your business, I want to offer you a free month of our VIP coaching, where we go live every single Friday and I help walk you through the different areas of your business. Go to alexbranning.com/VIP. But if you want even more support, go to alexbranning.com/call, C-A-L-L, call. Let’s hop on a phone and see if I can help you on an even more personal level by becoming your personal business coach.

Have a great rest of your day. I’ll talk to you soon.


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