A lot of “old” teaching around building a business teaches that you should build your business model around money, to be point blank. Selecting a target market “that can afford your services” and a specialty “that people will pay lots of money for” are the underlying concepts these teachings revolve around. You might have a great idea, but dammit, who the hell will pay for that, and where will you find them? If you can’t answer those questions, the teaching goes, you better chuck your target market and niche in the garbage and start again….
In my experience, the business owners that end up demotivated, frustrated, and disillusioned the fastest are the ones who revolved their business model around that supposed wealthy target market, with a specialty that they would supposedly pay for, and got burnt out on lack of success. At some point, pushing a business that is around money, you are likely to realize that you have somewhat or completely detached from your passion. In my book, it should be “passion first, money second”.
Think about it, if you’re not excited and passionate about WHAT you are doing, it comes across. Your writing is dull, your eyes don’t sparkle in meetings, you procrastinate on important activities, you are tired, possibly in pain or sick, and you need lots of vacation. Of course, when you LOVE what you do, you’re excited! You could work 24 hours a day and marvel at how little sleep you need. Every interaction fires you up to do even more, and people flock to you like metal to a magnet because they want what you have.
People are attracted to your energy first, then to your offer. If your energy is low, so is your attraction. If your attraction is low, so are your sales. Make sense?
I have taken lots of business programs where what I WANT to do is sliced and diced until it fits into some magic box full of some group of people I will miraculously find in a specific room, and when I enter, just because I have catered my offer to them, they are supposedly going to line up and buy from me. What? I don’t know about you, but it feels kind of sleazy to walk up to someone because I’ve been told they have money. Because I am coming from this energy, I then procrastinate on asking for business, because, in reality, I’m not really connected to what I am doing and who I’m doing it for.
For some business owners who are just starting, or who are frustrated with a lack of results, it can be pretty damn frustrating to consider the idea of having to start over. I’ve done it 3 times, so I get it. But, continuing to knock on closed doors that don’t open even when your knuckles implode, or doing lots of strategizing without any action isn’t getting your more business, so rather than resist, try a new direction! There are plenty of people who have done something they love, that was not based on a need, or even the intention of generating income, that ended up with a great business. There are other people who have created services and products we actually do not need at all, but because they are so cool we WANT one. Think of yourself – aren’t you often more excited to buy something you WANT versus something you NEED? I mean, I can easily put off grocery shopping in favor of buying a new iPhone!
So it seems to me there are two options when it comes to selecting and creating your target market and niche:
|Money Based – Model everything around the money. Figure out a service or product for which there is a known need, and look for people that can pay for it.|
|Passion Based – Create a service or product that you’re passionate about, because you are passionate about it, then look for your tribe, your people, and create the demand for it.|
There is merit in each model, and I’d even say, in some cases, the principle of targeting money is a more direct path to money. After all, isn’t that what the corporate model is based on? But that’s the point, the money-based model is a damn good reason to go work a day job in a corporation where you can check your passion at the door, and pick it up after hours, while you make some big bucks. If you’re a small business owner, though, why would you create another venture that makes you check your passion at the door?
From what I have seen, the business owners using the Money-Based model, at some point, get really tired, feel disconnected, empty, and sometimes out of integrity. At some point, the money just runs out, and after years of effort, the idea of starting over seems scary, too big, and too much.
Passion-based businesses, though, have a way of exciting and invigorating the business owner. They are the people you presume are part-vampire because there is no other way to explain how they get so much done and they are always smiling and wanting to be of service. They follow their heart into each venture, so when their heart aligns someplace else, they don’t start over, they simply integrate their new desire into their existing business, and it’s more of a transition, and less of an overhaul.
Working with passion first makes the process of selecting the right people and the right specialties a lot more fun, and, think about it, when you then have to work for the people that buy from you, you will actually enjoy the work, rather than slave away for each buck!
So for those of you that might be wondering how to begin, or how to shift, your marketing strategy, start by asking yourself if your product or service is something you are excited about. If the answer is YES, then go forth and conquer! If the answer is NO, then start tapping in to that passion first – a good way to do that is with The Personality Based Marketing program! Check it out and see if it’s for you.
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