Why Entrepreneurial Innovation Matters More Than Ever
Innovation is a topic often discussed in software applications, app development, and the world of tech. However; you don’t hear it as much in the online business space, particularly among service providers. But innovation is the lifeblood of market leadership.
If you want to be a leader in your space, you have to be an innovator. You have to come up with new, better, different, and thoughtful approaches to how you do business. How you show up, how you sell, how you market yourself, how you serve clients.
Innovation and disruption are a key part of thought leadership online. But most online business owners today are so blinded by tactics, that they fail to pick their head up and think big-picture.
Beating the algorithm.
Making the perfect Instagram reel.
Hopping on whatever trend is working for everyone else in the market.
The problem? In doing this, you are building someone else’s authority, while undermining your own. You are placing yourself in the category of “commodity.”
People see you as a commodity when you’re just like everyone else. When they see you as a leader in your space, as the best in the world at what you do, is when you become a category owner.
Those who position themselves as category owners display a clear, consistent message, and prioritize brand and relationships over transaction.
Category ownership is the key to brand longevity versus short-lived success. Jumping on every shiny new tactic is a surefire way to damage your reputation in the market.
So, how do you position yourself as a category owner and continue to elevate under circumstances of uncertainty, inflation, a recession, and mass layoffs? The good news is, more millionaires are statistically made in times of economic turmoil. In fact, the number of millionaires is expected to increase by 40% over the next 5 years according to Credit Suisse Group AG’s 2022 Global Wealth Report.
Friend, there’s no better time to lean in and prepare to disrupt.
How we’re disrupting the online coaching space:
If there’s anything to think about, it’s that now more than ever, your market is craving that just-in-time solution.
At Kelly Roach International and The Business Advisory, we are here to serve, support, innovate and disrupt the world of entrepreneurship by becoming the world’s best business education and leadership development company in the world. And in order to keep moving toward that goal, we knew we needed to deliver those just-in-time solutions to our market.
This past year, we focused heavily on both launching new offers that met our audience where they are, as well as going through iterations and revisions of our flagship coaching program to massively simplify for our clients – and we will continue to do so moving into 2023.
As a service provider, you must think innovatively about what those add-ons, upsells and downsells are that you can put in front of your customer as the just-in-time solutions that allow you to maintain newness, excitement and the opportunity to continue working with you in a new and different way.
Our new offers included The Inevitable Millionaire Mentorship program, designed to make 1% wealth building habits accessible to 99% of the population (this is a hands-on mentorship with me, open to business owners, professionals and high achievers of all walks of life). Up until now, it’s been close to impossible to get access to some of the world’s wealthiest, most successful individuals: and we all know that our circle of influence is more important and powerful than ever. We’ve also brought a handful of new on-demand courses to the market, including The Live Launch Method, Conviction Marketing, and more.
“Innovation is seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought.” –Dr. Albert
Additionally, revamping our existing offers to match the needs of our clients has allowed us to incorporate more experiential events, 1:1 time with our team, and implementation-heavy coaching. As you read on, you’ll understand why these are all important to consider as we move into 2023.
Disruption is coming to the online education space in 2023. We are heading into a period where people are craving both explicit, quick, what you may consider more “transactional” education that they can purchase, listen to, and take immediate action on, and on the other hand, highly-customized, relational experiences and services.
We’ve seen this first-and on our Agency side of the company; as we’ve grown organically with zero ad spend, the greatest piece of feedback from our clients has been that we are the first agency where our customers are actually connected with a human who is ready and willing to step in and solve problems as needed, versus automated, prefabricated content with no room to pivot as needed.
Now is the time to think about the role each one of your offers plays, and the interconnection between them.
Looking ahead: what to expect in 2023
There will be plenty of businesses that come out on top over the next year, because they are focused on capitalizing on opportunity. Others will get beaten out of business. The good news is: the choice is yours.
You can compete with all of the commodities in your industry and experience short-lived success, or you can reimagine and disrupt. It comes down to your ability to sustain optimism, continue taking action, and continue evolving your strategy and approach to match what people are looking for in this environment.
Here are a few things to be paying attention to, as we head into 2023
Expect a shift in consumer mentality: people are using simplicity to evaluate coaches, consultants, and service providers
Your audience, and your clients, are sick of information overload. They realize they are spending so much time consuming, and not enough time taking action. And because of it, they aren’t making progress. If you want people to stick around, you must create opportunities for them to get real results, faster.
This means you need to position your offers based on buyer mentality: simplicity. Your market is craving as little moving parts as possible. They want less things to attend, to do, to track or mange in their programs. They want what they need, when they need it, how they need it.
When you think about sales consultations, and promoting your programs, remember that people’s default state right now is extreme overwhelm. THey may not say it directly, but they are wondering if it’s realistic, or if it’ll work with all the other things they have going on in their lives right now.
As a service provider, it’s your job to help them understand that investing in you is NOT going to add to that overwhelm.
This is a good time to audit your program and consider whether each component is essential and does fundamentally improve their results. If not, decide if it’s necessary or can be eliminated or restructured. .
When you think about the content of your program, think about first and foremost how you can create customization, as opposed to throwing around strategies and leaving it up to your clients to figure out the implementation piece. How can you incorporate real conversations around the application of what they’re learning? Implementation is a huge component of results and without it, you aren’t bringing as much value as you might think.
There will be far less client satisfaction if people feel like they can’t utilize the components of your program – so, rather than dumping information and education into your programs and services, create more focus around taking action in real-time, versus simply listening.
Relationships and human connection take precedence
Custom, tailored experiences are the way to approach marketing and service delivery in 2023.
The more deeply we move into the world of social media, the more disconnected we feel. A huge piece of the shift going into 2023 is facilitating connection in your community, and fostering real relationships – not just with your clients, but also with the market, and with the people you surround yourself with.
On the marketing side: people are being sold to every day. It’s up to you to differentiate and stand out from the noise by focusing on human-centricity when interacting with your audience. Moving from transactional to relational is the key to increasing sales, because people feel much more secure making an investment when they feel trust and comfortability in the relationship.
If you are mass marketing with no personal touchpoint – even someone who loves what you teach and share may hesitate to purchase because they lack security and certainty. wSo if you’re just mass marketing, but there’s no personalized touch, even if someone likes what you’re teaching they like what you’re sharing.
We like to say, “zig when others zag.” Consider sending a gift, a handwritten note, or a gesture that’s few and far between these days. How can you leave a lasting impression on someone in a way that’ll make an impact?
On the service delivery side: when people in your program feel any sense of disconnection, they will seek it from an outside source. And more programs = more opportunity for distraction = less results. Bring them back in and create more space and focus on opportunities to connect, both with your staff and yourself.
Community will be one of the most essential things people consider when making investments in service providers, because the people who are organically in their life are not going to support the outcomes they need. Where most people will move into a state of reactivity and fear, others will crave a community of individuals who are striving and thriving.
The demand for highly-curated in-person experiences will increase
Live events used to be very much about massive conferences and big, fancy productions, but that’s not what people are seeking right now. Now is the time to think about curated experiences: intimate gatherings, meetups, small group settings of 5 to 10 people, and exclusivity. These can be unbelievably simple and cost-effective ways to facilitate intimacy, connection, and transformation.
Curated experience tend to be more focused on the actual container, the energy and experience itself than the showmanship.
While many people are experiencing Zoom fatigue, consider incorporating in-person elements to your group programs, which will in turn create much higher customer retention, far better client results, and an easier time generating referrals.
While others pull back, this is your time to capitalize on opportunity
Your marketing, your advertising, your customers, your team: they are your lifelines. And when you begin to cut your lifelines, you are almost guaranteeing that your business will contract over the next few years instead of expand.
OF course, it’s important to be fiscally responsible: if your team is not being coached through productivity and profitability, you might want to revisit this. However; if you begin making decisions on the front-end to cut your team, and cut your marketing and advertising, two years from now your business is going to be decimated.
If you continue to invest in the biggest contributing factors to your company’s growth, you will come out of this season as a much higher authority versus setting yourself back.
Brand positioning is more important than ever
Understand that in times of economic contraction, money is still present – it simply flows differently. That means that affluent, established buyers will continue to buy, regardless of what’s happening in the economy. In fact, to them, there is no better time to invest; they see opportunity everywhere.
Additionally, people will continue to purchase based on what they feel is important. They will still pay more for customized curated experiences or 1:1 work. Consider small group work, VIP days or taking on a handful of 1:1 clients.
As an online business owner, it’s crucial to use these last few weeks of the year to give your brand a refresh and uplevel your imagery, your content, and your positioning. Is your message clear and consistent? Are your photos sharp? Do your captions speak directly to your target audience? People are still buying, but they are also going to be discerning – and if you intend to sell to an affluent buyer, you need to represent authority and credibility.
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