When you’re starting a business, you’ll probably have lots of ideas. So much so that they might all be jumbled together. They bleed into each other, making it difficult to really give shape to any one idea. Not knowing how to separate and crystalize your ideas is a real but often not-talked-about obstacle to getting your business started. It can even be an obstacle for those who have existing products and services and want to offer something new.
If you’re currently in a corporate and looking to ‘escape” and start your own business, you can read all about when to to do that here.
Before we dive into putting together your products and services when you’re starting a business, let’s define a few things. This is how I define the following terms, because it helps when me (and my clients) know exactly what we’re referring to:
Products & Services: These are the major categories that give an idea of what you provide your customers. For example, these can be business coaching, journals, candles, photography services…
Offers: This is how you package your products and services to create something of high value to your customers. For example, 1:1 business coaching program with 12 60 min sessions, 1 year journal with manifestation pen, subscription box for handmade candles, wedding photography package with 150 edited photos and a physical photo album…
Getting started on your offer
Offers are how you position your products and services so that they become attractive to your customers. And to find out how to create an offer, you need to know your customers really well, listen to their frustrations, wants and needs, and find a way to put that together for them at a price that they are willing to pay. Let’s dive into this some more.
Take the pressure off your offer
The first thing to realize is that your offer doesn’t have to be your BIG offer, your main offer, or even a permanent offers. Businesses create offers and then change or remove them all the time. So take the pressure off, and realize that you not only can change your offer in the future, but that you most likely will. The reason for this isn’t that your offer will need “fixing up”, but rather, that you will definitely get feedback and should always look for ways to add more of what your customers want into your offer (and remove the thing they don’t want).
Understand your customers’ needs
The second thing that you need to do is map out all the things your customers are looking for when it comes to the products and services you provide. Once you have all of that written down, you can begin to create the offers that come up frequently in terms of their wants and needs. These can sometimes be super clear combinations that your target audience has specifically asked for, but they can also be pieces that you’ll put together.
Check back with your customers
The third thing you’ll want to do is to check back with your customers. Did you get it right? Is the offer that you’re putting together something they’re interested in? Is there anything they would change, add or remove? Getting feedback before you start saves you a lot of time and energy. When you gather feedback before you create your offer, you can be confident that your target audience is interested in it and will buy it.
Great, now you have your offer mapped out.
Articulate your offer
Next, you’ll need to find the absolute best way to describe it. When you do this, remember that there are people who want to know what the “nuts and bolts” of your offer are, and others who will be drawn to the benefits. You want to talk about both in order to maximize your chances of connecting their needs to your offer. Some people like to know how many minutes, modules and lessons are in a course. Others are sold on the transformation. And most need a bit of both.
Market and create your offer
Lastly, you’ll create your offer – while marketing it. There is no need to do this in succession. You absolutely can start marketing before your offer is ready. Create that intrigue, that curiosity. Begin to warm up your audience and get them ready to purchase as soon as your offer is available. If needed, you can create a waitlist. Otherwise, just start talking about your upcoming offer and let them know it’s coming soon!
In the end, you run your business, and you have the ability to make all your business decisions in the ways that serve you and your customers best. So approach your offer-creation activities with an open mind and a willingness to experiment and play with it. This philosophy and way of running your business (and your life!) will serve you in ways that’ll make you wonder why you never did them in the first place.
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