Agency Survival Bootcamp
Life Sucks Right Now
What do you do when things aren’t going according to plan?
Business plans and bloody noses
You had a great plan…
Two things about this quote…
1. Tyson lost the fight after he made the quote
2. I plan for getting punched in the mouth every f--ing day I’m in business
Maybe you should, too?
Goodbye to 10 Years of peak everything.
Good Riddance to 10 Years of peak everything.
Good Riddance! Peak housing market (And we thought the last bubble was insane!)
Good Riddance! Peak stock market
ou may remember 2009 – 2019 as the golden age... I call it the era of peak distraction!
This is the third shitstorm I’ve experienced in my professional life (and I’m not even 40 yet).
I knew it was coming, because history… We just didn’t know when
In 2018, I asked smart people, like my financial advisor
He said “think of this like a baseball game. It might feel like the 8th inning now, but we are going to extra
Not a baseball fan? Let me explain…
The problem? All games must end at some point… So we knew it was inevitable, but when would it happen?
I read the opinions of many rando’s on the Internet, and still had no idea…
Timing these things is impossible. I have been excited about a correction for years… Why? Because the market was already over…
Now it’s like everything’s on sale.
It's time to rebuild.
A great opportunity ahead
When markets are on the way up, it’s easy to get consumed by FOMO
Grass is greener… Other business models are sexier… Someone is making money easier…
Laptop Millionaires, Rented Lambos… It’s all over now.
There are much fewer shiny objects to chase, and those luxuries we “must have” are deeply discounted. This is the best thing that could happen for growing your future business.
What really matters
When things go poorly, focus on the future. It’s ok to be upset about recent events, but it’s the future that defines you.
Let’s give 2009-2019 a Viking funeral
This bootcamp focuses on a new way of operating. This bootcamp is about the future. The future is now.
The Future is Now
Is it time to pivot your business?
Convergence of trends
Life as an entrepreneur can be a slow burn. You discover something full of promise and want to tell everyone. When you share the idea, you’re met with looks like this.
Most people aren’t ready to hear what you have to say, they might even think you are arcane.
Truth is that you’re probably just an early adopter.
Early adopters are ahead of their time.
Right behind the innovators.
Quick note: I don’t consider agencies to be innovators, though many try.
Note: Pretending to be an innovator when you provide services is a sure-fire way to lose your shirt!
Innovators pave the way for service providers. For Example, Google was a major platform innovator in the 2000’s. My agency was an early adopter and rode the market-share wave with AdWords. In retrospect, we got lucky and bet on the right horse
Timing is everything
Jeff’s Agency Growth 2003-2019
While I’d like to say all this growth was planned, there was a decent amount of luck. But I believe you can create your own luck by incorporating what I learned along the way. Let’s start by talking about the three phases of the business.
Phase 1: Product Market Fit
Disclosure: I was not an employee/owner of my agency during this phase
Before I joined, my agency offered services like Marketing Automation, Database Marketing, Campaign Management, and Sales Consulting. After lots of trial and error, they learned that the market just wasn’t ready for what they had to offer. For example, Marketing Automation demand in 2004-2008 was minimal.
Looks pretty similar to the revenue curve, right? In retrospect, the company offered services only coveted by early adopters. Early adopters do not sustain a growing market!
It’s hard to grow a business with only early adopters buying. Something needs to shift the market.
Phase 2: Behavioral Shift
Guess: How does a trend move beyond early adopters?
Guess #1: It gradually just happens. Sure, this might happen in theory, but it never actually happens that
Guess #2: A Black Swan event. Black Swan events bring on shifts overnight
Phase 2 is about riding the wave while behavior shifts toward your service offering.
In 2007-2009, there was this whole Global Financial Crisis thing. Everyone was looking for a way to get the same results spending less money.
Companies were paying thousands of dollars a month on unproductive yellow page ads & radio spots. Lead costs on traditional channels were astronomical, 2-3x their profitable range.
There had to be a better way.
That’s when early adopters like me got an idea… let’s get clients cheaper leads using Google AdWords! The timing was perfect and the market was starting to take notice.
Google AdWords Demand
We figured it out at the perfect inflection point!
Global Financial Crisis be damned!
Key learning: a black swan event pushes adoption, QUICKLY
Key learning: Right now is the exact time clients will consider trying something
The best part? You’re not too late, but you will have to place your bets quickly. I’ll show you how to do this in future videos. But first, I want to wrap up my agency growth story.
Phase 3: Cash Cow or Rising Star
Eventually rising stars cool down.
Actually, it’s not that dramatic… Google just rebranded, changing "Google AdWords" to "Google Ads".
The rising star
The most important picture there is for business owners: A growing business that finds a rising star has a choice…
1. Find the next big thing and invest significantly in R&D and resources.
Continued growth requires focusing on emerging markets and adoption
For example, expanding to Facebook Ads.
2. Continue to milk the cash cow
Focus on generating more profit in a mature market. You can see which direction we took.
Phase 3 – optimize for profit
Disclosure: I have been an owner but not an employee during this phase
There’s nothing wrong with profits!
- Most entrepreneurs can successfully pivot their business for 1 or 2 cycles at most
- There’s nothing wrong with optimizing for profit (even if it means you replace yourself)
- Cash cows take the escalator up and the elevator down. Cash cows get shot!
- Radio ads and yellow pages were cash cows for 50+ years before the GFC…
- It’s difficult to reinvent yourself more often than that with the same ownership/employee mix
- Trends are easy to spot in the marketplace and Google trends helps you quantify impact
- Reacting too early to trends means you’re ahead of the market
- It doesn’t always take a black swan event for mass adoption to happen
- But we just experienced a Black Swan event and we already see the shift taking place! Many people learned what Zoom was for the first time recently…
- Once the box is opened, the top will never fit again…
- If you felt the urge to pivot your business previously, now it makes even more sense
- This is our new normal…
- The future is now!
Lifestyle or Business
What type of business are you running?
A lifestyle (over) correction
Back on April 24, 2007, the #1 song was…
It was the year the 4-hour workweek was published.
Many early adopters started to open-up to the idea of a work-from-anywhere lifestyle business. Here's the working from anywhere development curve.
The idea was unprecedented, but gained steam over the next decade, especially when combined with other events of the time. For example, on September 29, 2008, the #1 song was…
Oh yeah, also, the stock market crashed
Banks failed. Big corporations were bailed-out. Say what?
I thought big companies were too big to fail?
Big companies were all “business as usual” and yet many were living check to check. How is that possible?
That’s beyond my pay grade and the scope of this course, but these failures had a profound effect on me (and many people). Maybe we should be less focused on business and focus more on the lifestyle aspect.
The Lifestyle Business
Disclaimer: I have never read the 4-hour workweek and this is not a condemnation of the book itself… I’m trying to describe a specific mentality associated with choosing lifestyle over business
At the risk of over-generalizing, let me summarize the 4-hour workweek mentality.
- Find a business “muse” that is low maintenance but generates significant income
- Don’t build a big business with employees and office space
- Hire virtual assistants, gig workers, etc. to keep overhead low and use SOPs to handle repetitive tasks
- Let the system run itself while you
- If you do it right, you can operate the business in as little as four hours a week
Perfect timing! In 2008, the big companies failed because they did things the old way, might as well build a lifestyle business!
When the going is good…
Over the past 10 years, many entrepreneurs decided they wanted to emphasize lifestyle over business. I am one of those entrepreneurs.
In a growing economy, it’s easy to feel that this was the perfect position for a
business. Work as little as possible, enjoy yourself as much as possible, and ride the economic wave.
Gig to gig. Check to check. Hack to hack.
Hopefully tuck some money away for a rainy day, of course. What a wave it had been.
And then… a wipeout. The mother of all corrections.
Will putting lifestyle over business hold up? Early indicators are no.
It’s time to correct the balance of business and lifestyle.
Business isn’t a four letter word
At the risk of sounding all “ivory tower-ey”, I worked 60 hour weeks from 2008-2013 growing my agency business. Burned out, I focused on lifestyle over business from 2014-2015 and worked ~10-20 hours a week. Before long, I quickly went back to working hard on my business in 2016, focusing less on lifestyle
Because I’m young, these are my best working years, and I was getting restless from the
relaxation, i.e. too much of a good thing!
Also, I get a lot of satisfaction from growing a team, even more than from a great lifestyle. So I decided to go back to a 40-hour workweek and give myself much needed structure.
I did this while I was a “digital nomad,” working remote 40 hour weeks from 40+ countries. It has been both challenging and rewarding. But now I’ve become much more balanced than the extremes (too much business and too much lifestyle).
It’s all about balance.
Unfortunately, many are finding this out the hard way at the same time.
What is more exploitative? Big companies subjecting millions of employees to wage freezes in 2008-2012. Or a small business firing all their employees and contractors/gig workers today?
Same concept, different coat of paint. Neither is exactly “worker friendly” and both are equally cold. These business decisions are defensible, given the circumstances.
What I’m most interested in is how future companies will react to recent events. Society failed for so many people in 2020. What will we do differently moving forward?
The Barney Business
This is where I try to predict the future based on the past. Here are trends I saw emerging over the past few years:
- Because of 2008 failures, big business wants to remain small
- Gig workers and contractors filled the need for employees, without employee protections
- Things came out of balance and gig workers and contractors wanted to be treated like employees
- Labor is starting to organize in ways that allows gig workers to regain rights they lost in 2008
- Most of these protections were not implemented before Covid-19 hit, but were inevitable
- Everyone, everywhere is taking an immediate hit (employers, employees, contractors)
- When the dust settles, companies and employees will realize they need each other to survive
- Businesses will use the tragedy of Covid-19 to come together and course-correct the last course-correction
I’m calling this the Barney Business. I love you, you love me.
Working together because we take care of each other. Shared responsibility for spending, shared burdens, shared mission. This might be a pipe dream… it certainly sounds like one as I say it out loud.
But what I can tell you is this – I’ve been running a Barney business since 2016. And I’ve been pretty good at predicting the future to this point as an early adopter.
- In 2008, everyone got screwed by the global financial crisis
- Especially the big businesses that created the crisis in the first place
- This event ushered in a new era of business, with the lifestyle business gaining prominence
- The idea of a lifestyle business wasn’t new, the idea had been around pre-crisis
- Businesses decided to keep expenses low, using interchangeable parts to fulfill demand
- With the current crisis, everyone is getting screwed again
- This time, I predict the businesses and workers will react by creating a more symbiotic relationship
- I’m calling this the Barney business after a big purple dinosaur
- This shift won’t happen overnight, but we now have entire generations of traumatized workers…
- Regardless of whether I’m right, the old way of doing things is in the rearview mirror
Keep It on the Down Low
What business changes make sense right now?
WWDBD? What would David Bowie do right now?
WWBBD? What would Brian Boitano do?
Ok, time to get serious.
I’m going to suggest quite a few ideas for thinking about an uncertain financial future. I don’t know your personal situation and I know not everything is practical to implement
And that’s OK…
This isn’t normal, it’s strange and unprecedented. But you can take a lesson from David Bowie and face this strange situation head-on.
Sing along with me! Strange is the new black normal.
Cash is King, Queen… the entire court
Keep spending on the down low, but don’t lay low. Now isn’t the time to bury your head in the sand and wait for this to be over.
Companies that do nothing, lose
The lesson: Stick to the hits when it comes to expenses and claw back profits
One reasonable and obvious way to survive a downturn is to cut your spending to only essentials. Of course, we know what’s truly essential right now!!
The essentials in life
Ok, hopefully the TP crisis of 2020 is solved by the time you watch this. But what I mean by essentials for your business is this: spend money to make money.
That’s the only real way I can put it…
Essential spending = expenses that have a fighting chance of making you
Non-essential spending doesn’t
So unless you pivot to the TP hoarding and price gauging industry, this is not essential. Think about how you can make your services essential?
Make Revenue by Being the Source of Revenue for others
Myth: Businesses (i.e. clients) don’t want to spend money right now
Fact: Clients want to spend on essentials as much or more than you do
And for the final time, I’m not talking about toilet paper! Clients will spend money to dig themselves out of a hole. Clients will spend money to lock in future profits.
Remember, companies that do nothing, lose.
Back to my 2008 story about shifting from yellow pages to Google. Spending $500 per lead with the yellow pages was losing money. Spending $75 per lead with Google AdWords was genius.
You want to be on the right side of history. Spending isn’t ending… it’s shifting. The same shift is happening right now… and will happen for the next several years.
Positioning your business as the solution
How do you get notoriety as the solution moving forward? Start by aligning yourself with the source of future revenue. And position your business to ride the wave as the majority starts to adopt new trends.
Early adopters are ahead of their time
Get ready for some big wave action. We’ll explore opportunities in upcoming videos. How should you prepare financially?
The TPFGPITF financial plan
The face-punch-proof financial plan, in honor of that loveable loser Mike Tyson.
What is the plan for getting punched in the face?
- Keep expenses to low and essential
- Spend money to make money (i.e. invest in marketing!)
- When you assume that nobody wants to spend money now, you’re making an ass out of u and me
- Project cash flow and client flow in three ways: conservatively, realistically, and optimistically. Download our cash flow calculator for more information
- Establish a set of KPIs to determine the path of your business now, so you can recognize changes before problems arise
- Look into options for temporary assistance from your local government
I implore you to look into government assistance options for your business. Since this bootcamp will be watched in 100+ countries, I can’t focus everywhere. I have only researched what’s available in my home country
US SBA Loan Guidance
I’m hopeful your country will have a similar resource.
- Keep spending on the down-low, but don’t lay low.
- Even if you feel like a loser now, there’s a path to being a winner
- The economy isn’t dying or dead, it’s just corrected
- Start thinking about how your business will be on the right side of history
- Create a financial plan and don’t be afraid to seek assistance from higher powers
Skate to Where the Puck Will Be
How do you find clients with a budget in a down economy?
The Great One
I hope you’ve heard of Wayne Gretzky?
He’s the undisputed best professional hockey player of all time. His Nickname was ”the Great One” and I was honored to watch him play as a kid.
He’s also a quote/meme machine! You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.
Brothers! And the Gretzky brothers hold the NHL record for most combined points by two brothers.
But the most relevant quote for now? Skate to where the puck will be.
So, where will the puck be when this all settles?
Trends are your friends
We’ve already looked at Google Trends.
The best free meta trends tool I’ve ever seen! Here’s another place to look for service ideas.
Udemy Marketplace Insights and Featured Topics.
Which areas have the most students?
But Jeff, why are online course sales relevant to service providers? Here's why:
- Course sales indicate trends of where people are learning (i.e. making investments)
- In an emerging industry, learning is a leading indicator of demand
- To meet surging demand, many do-it-yourselfers (DIY’s) emerge
- Over time, potential clients will realize that DIY is impossible and hire an expert
- There is often a lag time between a popular course topic and marketplace demand
- I predict the most popular course topics today will reach majority adoption within the next 5 years
- This will not occur 100% of the time but it’s definitely a perspective into the future
Especially when combined with Google Trends data, and LinkedIn Emerging Jobs.
Job Openings = Current Demand
- Much like online courses, new job openings is an indicator for what services will be in demand
- Companies hire for roles, often realizing that in-house hires don’t have the necessary expertise to succeed
- So they turn to service providers to consult/implement the new technology
- While there are many jobs open, there are still very few experts in emerging industries
- This creates a prime growth opportunity for your business
Now that you have an idea of where the future is heading, how do you get a piece?
With emerging markets, the budget question is the WRONG question…
If there is demand today or tomorrow, how do you get involved?
Try a different approach. Don’t ask people if they have a budget for your newfound service. Because they DON’T.
Budgets are based on the past… you’re a muse from the future. You don’t just get a budget for your services. You need to take the budget from somewhere else.
For example, you sell hand sanitizer. Imagine trying to sell someone on their need for hand sanitizer in 2020 based on their 2019 budget.
Desperate times call for desperate measures. This quote obviously comes from Tom Cruise.
Or perhaps Bill Shakespeare
Even further back to Hippocrates.
Black Swan events eschew conventional sales methods. Don’t ask how much someone has to spend on your services, but demonstrate how you can add value! But more on this in the next lesson.
Someone always profits…
Why not you? Let’s make some decisions about the future.
Think about a service that will be in demand in the future (where the puck will be). Now answer the following questions:
1. What is the service you hope to provide?
2. Who will you provide it for?
3. Is demand there or growing quickly?
Hint: Reach for the Stars!
4. Is performing this service repeatable?
5. Do you enjoy providing this service?
6. Are you skilled enough (or plan to be skilled enough) to be regarded as an
7. Will the service be profitable?
8. How well can you deliver the service? Score it 1-5 (5 being best)
9. How are the growth prospects of the target industry? Score it 1-5 (5 being best)
10. How would you rate the profit potential? Score it 1-5 (5 being best)
11. What about revenue potential? Score it 1-5 (5 being best)
12. Rate the 5-year potential of this service niche? Score it 1-5 (5 being best)
Putting it together
The Matrix. No, I’m not going to force you to take a pill.
I created the Service Pivot Matrix to help you evaluate these ideas.
- Find a service that will be in demand in the future (skate to where the puck will be)
- There are countless tools available for researching trends
- Most trends have been set in motion by early adopters for years (and have years of data)
- There will be new service opportunities abound, but it will require hard work to earn a share
- You’ll need to hone your skills and build for the near future
- This may require reinventing yourself and taking a leap of faith
- But it’s a lot less of a leap of faith when you do your homework
- Fill out the matrix and begin to see how you can usher in your future
Godfather Offers and Business Models
Should I focus on surviving the next 3-6 months or longer term?
2009-2019 RIP Redux
At the risk of sounding repetitive, 2009-2019 was a bull market in most industries and countries. Of course, not everyone had it perfect. Not everything was easy. Many people will not reflect on those years as a Golden Age for them.
But for the majority of the world, the economy was booming. In a booming market, everyone feels like a genius on the way up. But that genius was really just basic microeconomics. Let me explain.
Principles of Microeconomics
Why yes, I did pass AP microeconomics in the 9th grade. My biggest takeaway? Guns and butter. Aka supply and demand.
The supply and demand curve: When demand outpaces supply, prices go up.
Up and to the right
Let’s quantify the growth of the previous decade. We have seen the US market data.
Mix in a record number of venture capital deals and funds.
Real estate prices were higher than the previous bubble.
That’s all demand – there was an insatiable demand the past decade. On the other hand, supply was getting scarce. There is record low unemployment numbers in the US in 2019.
Up and to the right, meet down and to the left. Supply couldn’t keep up with demand. Everything was getting expensive! Or as they say in my native Minnesota, everything is so spendy ya know.
What’s the difference between 2019 and 2020?
The Corona Line
Let’s talk about the Corona line…
Wait, Jeff, isn’t that a circle?
Yes, it is! But here’s where the line comes in.
We’ve seen the stock market trendlines. The stock market had a major correction,
There is a negative correlation with unemployment claims. Unemployment claims up, stock market down.
The line is the line we draw in the sand. The Corona line.
When supply officially outpaced demand.
What happens when supply outpaces demand?
We are now in a surplus situation. A surplus for the ages is upon us. When new supply enters the market, many service providers will be swallowing a lot of pride in the next few years.
How do you stand out when the supply is waaaay greater than demand?
You have Luca Brasi do your dirty work!
Better known as pull a Don Corleone.
You are likely part of an over-supply of the services you recently performed. Prospective customers have their pick of providers to work with. You need to make an offer that is hard to refuse.
It’s time to adjust your offer and potentially your business model to get noticed.
Offers that I love
Work for free/cheap: Consider a Free/Freemium model while pivoting to new services.
The Free-Freemium Model:
- This model works by offering new services for free or a greatly reduced rate
- You get much valued experience in a new area while helping out a business in need
- Spend your time and money on R&D (research and development) by developing new services (i.e. Become an early adopter in a new service line, Wayne Gretzky style)
- As the market takes notice of new trends, you are positioned as an expert
- Even just a few months lead time as an early adopter will give you an edge over your competition
- In the end, you can emerge with a great client testimonial and stay busy in uncertain times
- Plus, that client will consider you for further expansion if your services drive demand
- Yes, this will temporarily affect your cash flow… BUT, I’m guessing that this is already the case, so might as well focus on something productive
Bottom line: Supply / Demand curves for the old way of doing things are forever changed
Bottom line: Might as well skate to where the puck (future demand) will be
Offers that make me skeptical
Note: These work for some people, but they have never worked for me…
Note: I’ll explain why I failed with these models as I go through them
Pay per results
Pay per results (leads, sales, etc.) vs. retainer model. Here's the Pay Per Results Model:
- For example, you optimize your paid advertising to get leads for $40
- The client pays for leads for $80
- This is great if 100% of leads are qualified, but the breakage rate on leads can be 50% or higher
- So your client may dispute the quality of leads and refuse to pay for them
- Suddenly your 50% margin goes to 0%
- You might even lose money every time you generate a lead!
Why don’t I like it? Pay Per Results Cons:
- You’re still giving your services away for free, but…
- You are taking on ALL the overhead for SOMEONE ELSE’S BUSINESS
- At the end of the day, you own nothing. You always have to perform in order to get paid
- Sure, you might make some money, but I’ve personally found the unit economics frustrating
- You have fixed expenses but variable income dependent on factors outside your control
- I find this business model only works if you can keep acquisition costs below 20%
- Meaning, you need to generate leads for $16 and sell for $80 to be consistently profitable
- The business model only succeeds if you keep expenses to a bare minimum, ignoring volume
Here's the Revenue Share Model:
- Clients only pay for the results you deliver
- Payments are based commissions – with a percentage of sales or profits being common
- Occasionally there may be an up-front payment or deposit, but not guaranteed
Why don’t I like it? Revenue Share Cons:
- You still have to pay your employees / resources as you work to build results
- Results are very strongly correlated with brand recognition and product-market fit
- Companies with strong brands and product-market fit aren’t usually looking for this arrangement
- If a company doesn’t have a strong brand or product-market fit, you are in charge of building this
- You’re stuck building someone else’s brand, risk-free to them
- Yet in the end, you still own nothing of the business!
- This may be generalizing, but this type of contract attracts the wrong type of clients
Exceptions to the rule
I understand desperate times call for desperate measures.
If temporarily changing your business model is necessary, I won’t stop you from proceeding (with caution). Use our revenue escalator spreadsheet to work through scenarios with each model.
- When a window closes, a door opens
- The Corona line has ushered in a new era of how we operate
- Supply and demand for what you used to do has changed forever
- Transition into the next golden age by focusing on where we are headed
- It will likely require swallowing your pride for the next few cycles
- A godfather offer may be required to get traction
- Always remember to build your own business and not someone else’s
Revenue Escalator and Cashflow Calculator
How can I project what my business will look like when this mess ends?
Electric Stairway to Revenue Heaven
Now this is where I want to play some Led Zeppelin for you. But I have a strict No Stairway to Heaven rule in my courses.
So I’ll talk about the escalator instead, specifically this calculator.
Remember our view on market economics…
The decline can result in losing 80% of your business or more, overnight. It’s SHOCKING! More shocking than anything we’ll experience in business.
You may not be over the shock, but I ask that you keep an open mind and press on. The elevator has already gone down, what does the escalator back up look like? Let me show you a data driven approach to the revenue escalator.
By now, you’ve seen my note about making three projections for your business: Conservative, Realistic, and Optimistic.
Now it’s time for me to show you how to play these scenarios for yourself. It starts by grabbing a copy of the calculator from your resources, and watch the video above on how to fill it out!
- You can see how each of these projections impact your bottom line
- Being conservative is a natural reaction, but can severely stunt future growth
- Realistic scenarios allow you to hedge your bets and keep cash flow steady
- Optimistic scenarios are great for assuming that you will emerge from this BETTER than you were before
- I’m taking an optimistic approach and using the downtime as an opportunity to build a better future
- I sincerely hope you consider doing the same!
The 5 Year (Backup) Plan
What do I do now?
The Backup Plan
I think Big Boi said it best
Yet Big Boi is nowhere to be found on Google Images…
So let’s take it from J-Lo
You know what, screw it… I’m not going to talk about a backup plan! A backup plan implies that whatever you were doing previously was going perfectly.
According to plan if you will… But if the plan didn’t involve R&D, trend watching, and market analysis, it wasn’t really a plan. It was big wave surfing.
So I’m not going to talk about a backup plan… this is just the plan now, OK?
The 5-year plan for catching the next wave up
My previous videos were all showing you pieces of the puzzle. Now, it’s assembly time. How do you adjust to the new world order? You have the information at hand that you need to pivot your business as needed.
We have passed the corona line.
The majority is catching up with early adopters, seemingly overnight.
Supply has outpaced demand in legacy services.
Yet there is a massive shortage in the new economy.
There is (likely) such a thing as being too conservative with spending.
Companies that do nothing, lose.
Time to put the puzzle together. Side note: this is a fun Google Image search!
Step 1: The Pivot
Where will you focus your service offerings to stand out in the new economy? Use our resources and research guide to form your own opinion. Place your bets using a data driven approach using our Pivot Evaluation Matrix.
Step 2: Land a prototype client
- Use your 3-6 month runway to add value to the economy.
- Do work for free/inexpensively in exchange for experience.
- Knock it out of the park and generate a fantastic case study and gushing client testimonial.
- Gain momentum with your new service and company direction
Because you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.
Step 3: Generate intellectual capital
Take the results you generate and evaluate how you can do even better. Document your processes, make improvements, and focus on 10-20% gains you can make. Do this in order to become confident in the scalability of your offering.
Take on as many opportunities as you can handle and as word of mouth will allow.
Step 4: Publicize your results and position your expertise
Today’s expert is yesterday’s Bambi on ice.
Just kidding, we’re not geologists here, we’re entrepreneurs. Time and determination. That’s the key to becoming known as an expert in your craft.
Why content marketing fails: You gave up way too soon!
Trust me, here’s my stats. Here's the Jeffalytics blog traffic 2013-2019
I gave up more times than I can count and then I got serious in 2018. And when I got serious about blogging, this happens:
Step 5: Build a reputation and nest egg off your specific brand of expertise
Here’s how to build a brand:
- Write about what you know
- Share your journey
- Publicize your results
Do it now and you’ll be a thought leader in no time. Why make this investment? Because your new skills could be in a scarcity situation for the next 5-10 years
In a surplus situation, find a shortage elsewhere.
There are no guarantees, but you can make an educated guess. Even in small niches, there are many opportunities to generate profitable services.
Step 6: Lead your clients into the new economy
The economy will move forward in due time. After taking the elevator down, it will likely ride the stairway back up. You have a unique opportunity, as an early adopter, to steer the next cycle of growth. I hope you make the obvious choice.
Do it for Wayne. Do it for that loveable loser Mike Tyson. Do it for Don Vito. Do it for J-Lo. Do it for Me.
Up and to the right.
- I hope you enjoyed this course as I enjoyed making it
- Putting my thoughts down was therapeutic and has my head spinning with possibilities
- Be on the lookout for more from me on how to move forward when everyone else is standing still
- We’ve got this…