Have you ever gotten so sick and tired of the subset of the market that you serve that you want to stop serving them cold turkey?
Resist the urge.
While I definitely understand the need for firing a client, I can assure you that in the business-building process that it is not always the best move. Or at least it’s not if you do it in one fell swoop. Let me explain.
I am definitely a big proponent of having a diversified client mix. The more diversified your client mix, the more stable your revenue and the more you can focus on growing your business. And even when you’ve selected the wrong target, there’s a right and a wrong way for making the shift.
If you’ve been wondering how to shift your client focus without missing a beat (or income) as you build your business, you can thank Joan because I’m featuring her question in this week’s episode of Incredible Factor TV.
“Hi Darnyelle. I’m a consultant who is thinking about making a shift in who I serve but I’m struggling with how to get started what advice can you offer?”
See my response to Joan’s question here:
As I share in the episode, a diversified client mix is essential to get beyond the surface of building a business. Trust me, I get it. You start serving where you feel comfortable and hopefully you realize that you’re leaving money on the table by not getting out of your comfort zone. When you’re ready to make the shift, consider these five tips.
1. Reduce the number of offerings available to the client subset you’re wanting to leave behind. One of the biggest mistakes I see business owners in Joan’s position make is that they “ramp up” their offerings to the clients they want to discontinue servicing because they allow fear to infiltrate their best laid plans. My recommendation: Don’t. No matter what you do, scale back what’s available. You may also want to adjust your pricing upward so that you start to get clients that are more invested in your services.
2. Focus on your market research for your new ideal client. In order to create your marketing and update your sales management system, you’ll need to get very clear about your new target. Be sure to ask yourself the key questions that will help you to narrow them down succinctly. Another mistake I see business owners make is to not do their due diligence in market research for those they want to serve. Be sure to uncover the who, what, when, and why of that audience so that you can be sure that not only do they have the SPICE problem you solve but that they are ready right now to pay for a solution to that problem.
3. Create your key messages and basic marketing materials for your new client. Once your research is complete, you’ll want to take time to create your key brand and marketing messages for them and your team who will be helping you to find them. This document needs to be comprehensive – thinking through each facet of your SPICE problem and what they’ll need to see (and hear) to know that you can help them.
4. Build your first campaign to attract your new ideal clients. This campaign should include marketing strategies that will help you to get found by your ideal clients. There may be more offline strategies than on, depending on what your market research tells you about the best places to find your ideal clients. This campaign should be expected to run for 8-12 weeks and yield targeted results, so be sure to think each facet through.
5. Don’t stop serving your current clients until you have sufficient traction with your new clients. I do not recommend changing your focus after you close your first new client. My recommendation is that you replace the revenue with new clients and only then to stop the services all-together for those you used to serve. This helps to ensure that you don’t lose momentum in the process.
Now I want to hear from you, what’s your two cents?: What other ideas would you share with Joan to help her make a smooth client transition?
©2015 by Darnyelle A. Jervey. All Rights Reserved. Darnyelle A. Jervey, MBA, The Incredible Factor Business Optimization Coach and Mentor, is the founder of Incredible One Enterprises®, Incredible Factor University® and the Leverage Your Incredible Factor System®, a proven step-by-step program so you experience financial and spiritual abundance in your life because of your business. For more information and a FREE audio CD “7 Critical Mistakes Even Smart Entrepreneurs Must Avoid for Clients, Connection and Cash Flow!” just fill out the form below.