Proven Profitable Business Model: Your Delivery System

In finding your fastest path to profitability, we have covered your ideal customer and the value proposition you offer to them. Value propositions are packaged and delivered to customers through a variety of means. It is essential to know how your customer wants to be reached and which systems work best for you. This component of your Proven Profitable Business Model relies heavily on communicating with your customers. You will use your delivery system todelivery-man

  • Raise awareness about the Value you have on offer
  • Help your potential customers evaluate the Value you offer
  • Make your products and services available in a way that is cost-efficient and effective
  • Deliver the products and services
  • Provide support after the purchase has been made

You bridge the gap between your products/services and your customer when you raise awareness of the offer you have available. Some call this marketing, but truly it is an education campaign. And while you are educating customers about the Value on offer, you give them opportunities to evaluate whether that offer is right for them. Your goal is not to convince your prospect to buy, but to help them come to a clear “yes” or “no” as to whether this is the right purchase for them at this time. Once the decision has been made, you need to have a simple process for customers to make their purchase safely and for you to deliver that product in a timely manner. If your Delivery System is broken at this point, you will never create repeat business or word of mouth referrals. Finally, you must consider how you plan to support your customer once the purchase has been made.  The higher the price of the product, the more a customer expects in the way of guarantees, customer service and on-going support.

Create a clear, clean Delivery System and you are well on your way to the fastest path to profitability!

Is your Delivery System broken somewhere? Need help in creating a way to deliver your value to customers? Contact me for a complimentary strategy session and a free template at lisa@vanallencoaching.com

Proven Profitable Business Model: Your Value Proposition

A Value Proposition is the reason why customers turn to one company over another. In a Proven Profitable Business Model, one key component for ensuring cash flow and marketability is your Value Proposition. To determine the true value you offer your customers or clients, you want to consider three key areas:

  • How much do your customers want your offer?
  • How hard is it to find the solution you are offering?
  • How much proof do you have that you can deliver?

Value-starbustWhen you make an offer of a product or service to your customers, make sure you are offering a solution to a problem they really want solved. The more acute their need, the higher your product or service will be in demand. Neurosurgery is a good example of an acute need a customer might have. A neurosurgeon has to do very little marketing and can charge almost anything they want if they can relieve the customer’s need for brain surgery. At the other end of the spectrum, Chia pets do not create much demand. They have to be marketed heavily and prices are low. Profits depend on volume sales. You might not be a brain surgeon, but you can research your customer’s needs to uncover the pain or problem that needs solved and create an offer that specifically addresses that need.

You also want to consider how much competition there is in your market. How easy can your potential customers find the solution they need? How can you make your offer stand out as being more uniquely aligned with your customer’s values and what they want?

And finally, create proof. Proof is not just your credentials or basic testimonials, although these help. Creating proof requires that you have measureable results to go with those testimonials. If you are launching a new product or service, offer it initially at lower price point than you plan to sell it and create a beta-test. Ask customers about their needs or problems before they purchased and then collect results after they used your product. If you can, get video recordings of testimonials to go with your quantifiable results, and you will have the beginning of a marketing campaign based on undeniable proof that your product or services work, that you have value on offer.

Bottom line, a profitable business has life changing value at its foundation. How does your offer make a difference in your customer’s lives? In their communities? In their world?

Need help with identifying your Value Proposition or in creating proof for your offer?  Contact me for a complimentary strategy session and a free template at lisa@vanallencoaching.com

Proven Profitable Business Model: Your Ideal Customer

ideal-customer-targetA truly profitable business model begins and ends with the customer in mind.  This isn’t a new concept. You’ve heard about target markets and customer segments, but how closely have you been paying attention to your ideal customer? How well do you know who they are, what they want, and why they would choose to do business with you?  The more clarity you have in answering these questions, the more you will be able to charge, create repeat business, and turn customers into raving fans.

You know you have defined your ideal customer if you have answers to these seven questions:

  1. What is broken in their world?  What is the problem they need solved?
  2. What is the solution that only you can offer with your unique combination of skills, experience, products, and services?
  3. What are they willing to pay for this solution?
  4. How do they want the solution delivered? In person? Online? Audio or video? What type of package?
  5. What do you have in common with your customer?  What makes the two of you “click”?
  6. What do you want your customer to expect from you?  How do you want to show up?
  7. Who do you need to be to serve the customers you want to serve?

Are you struggling with clarity on your ideal customer? Knowing your ideal client is the first brick on your fastest path to cash. Contact me for a strategy session and get a free template that will help you map out and target the perfect customer for your business: lisa@VanAllenCoaching.com

The Profit of Rest

I’m not a fan of New Year’s Resolutions. They don’t work. Instead, I believe in having a focus or theme each year because putting our attention on something makes it stronger. If you want better health, you can put your focus on adding superfoods to your diet. If increased cash flow is something your business needs, you might start every week of a new year with the question, “What is my fastest path to cash?” and doing whatever comes to mind. I’m actually doing both of these things and benefitting from them, but my focus for the year is on REST and RE-CREATION.
PuppyThis theme of REST didn’t sneak up on me quietly. It was like everyone everywhere had conspired to send me the same message. I took a class at my church and discovered a Sabbath retreat was part of the curriculum. I attended a conference and the keynote speaker diverted his talk to focus on our need to recharge. My mom had a stroke and watching her recovery made me recognized the frailty of my flesh and the potential limits to what I can accomplish, especially if I don’t take care. Shortly after this my mentor coach Andrea J. Lee spent the better part of a session convincing me that the profitability and health of my business was intertwined with the generosity of my self-care and the focus I place on my personal health.  Time to rest, recuperate, recharge, and re-create is a key focus for me in my life and my business this year.

We can’t assess where we are and where we want to go until we stop doing. Constant activity can seem productive, but all that productivity will have diminishing returns if it is not focused and strategic. The best strategy comes from quiet contemplation. The best ideas come when I get away from my work and get involved in something that requires very little conscious thought. I love letting my mind wander while showering, drawing, driving, walking, sewing or cleaning. New approaches to problem solving appear and fresh ideas begin to emerge. The elegant simplicity of this strategy should not be missed. It is a paradox: making time and space for rest increases your productivity and profitability.

We’re about a quarter into 2014 and I’ll bet most of your New Year’s Resolutions have faded away. What would it look like if you were to spend the rest of the year focused on caring for the Golden Goose in your business:  YOU!

Proven Profitability in Your Business Model

lighted-brick-pathwayHow did you decide on your business model? Did you do much research or did you follow the path created by a successful entrepreneur? How confident are you that your model is working and creating the cash flow you desire? How well does your model fit your values, mission and vision? I’ve been researching business models and find that they can all be boiled down to 9 basic components. The magic is how you mix and match those components, how they are defined and where you put your focus.

This blog series is designed to help you find and define those nine basic components and lay them down like brick pavers that creates the fastest path to profit.

We need to start with my definition of business profitability. It may not be what you expected!  The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines profitability as that which “produces good or helpful results or effects”. When you look for profitability in a business, you want to look at more than cash flow. Revenue is a very important element, but not the most important element. Without positive cash flow you don’t really have a business, you have a hobby or worse, a waste of time and resources. If your business is truly profitable, you are:

  • generating income
  • creating value
  • making a difference
  • using your gifts
  • caring for your soul
  • nurturing your relationships

I’m sure you know of a number of businesses that generate cash but do not offer profitability in these other areas.  How does your business measure up?  Is it truly profitable – to you, your family, your community, your world?

Watch for upcoming posts on how you can create a truly profitable business model, whether you are just starting out or have been in business for years!

A Hero You Can Chase: Leadership Lessons in an Oscars Speech

Last night Matthew McConaughey accepted the Oscar for Best Actor for a film I haven’t seen. McConaughey isn’t my favorite actor, although I have enjoyed several of his films. But something in his speech stood out as a leadership lesson I think is worth considering. “There’s three things, to my account, that I need each day: One of them is something to look up to, another is something to look forward to, and another is someone to chase,” McConaughey said. He went on to explain that the person he will be in ten years is the hero he is chasing. What a powerful concept to consider.

Every day, week or year McConaughey can look out ahead and examine what he needs to do to be the man he wants to be in ten years. When decisions are made with this kind of vision in mind, the choices are clearer and more easily made to do what it takes to move forward. If I want to be healthy in ten years, then today I will eat nutritious foods and get some exercise. If I want to have money to spend, then I will put some cash from my next pay check away in savings. If I want a successful business, I will connect with clients and create the best possible experience to keep them coming back for more. If I want a community with fewer hungry children, I will do what I can to feed one today.more.

Who will you be in ten years –

and more importantly, what do yo

u need to do to become that person today

?

 

Matthew McConaughey

We Need A Hero!

A few months ago a bookkeeper named Antoinette Tuff persuaded an armed gunman to surrender at a Georgia school, saving countless lives. EverydayAntoinette Tuff heroes live in and around us, and we never really know who they are until they are under fire. Would you have the same courage if you were faced with a crisis?

How about in your business? As a leader you are faced with challenges every day that can require heroic moves. According to the book, What Makes a Hero? The Surprising Science of Selflessness by Elizabeth Svoboda, there are four traits common to real-life heroes. I believe these traits apply to business leaders, too. Read below and let me know what you think.

1. Heroes live by a moral code.

If you are a transformational business leader, you live by a moral code. You have personal and spiritual values that drive what you do every day. The big choices and the smallest decisions are filtered through that code.

2. Heroes train to take action.

Just think about how hard Navy seals and Army rangers train. Their training is grueling and rigorous. Why? So they are prepared no matter what comes up. Preparation for business leadership is just as essential. And the ability to habitually take action on a moment’s notice will make the difference between success and failure.

3. Heroes are compassionate.

This isn’t touchy feely fluff! Research shows that business leaders who relate to the people around them on a personal level rather than a hierarchical one are more influential and productive. You can be strong, determined, and forward-focused, but unless you look around you and connect with the hearts of your team, you’ll be running out ahead all by yourself. That is not leadership – that’s just a nice run.

4. Heroes perform ordinary acts of kindness.

Here’s another research study for you: Stanford business psychologists have found that heroes and leaders volunteer in their communities an average of 60 hours a year. They are out in their communities building houses for the homeless, feeding the hungry, listening to troubled teens, serving on boards and committees that truly make a difference. All this service creates an awareness of people an circumstances around you. As a leader you need your Bat radar and your Spidey sense tuned in to opportunities to create change. And isn’t that why you’re in business in the first place?

We need heroes, leaders who are prepared to serve with compassion, take action and live up to personal and spiritual values.

We need YOU!

—–

Who’s gonna fight for what’s right?
Who’s gonna help us survive?
We’re in the fight of our lives
And we’re not ready to die
Who’s gonna fight for the weak?
Who’s gonna make ’em believe?
I’ve got a hero, I’ve got a hero
Living in me
I’m gonna fight for what’s right
Today I’m speaking my mind
And if it kills me tonight
I will be ready to die
A hero’s not afraid to give his life
A hero’s gonna save me just in time
I need a hero to save me now
I need a hero, save me now
I need a hero to save my life
A hero will save me just in time

(Lyrics from Hero by
John & Korey Cooper)

Hero by Skillet

Hero by Skillet