There’s nothing like seeing a 100% of your revenue disappear in a single week, to focus your mind on the fact that you may have to do things a little bit differently in the future.
This is what has happened to many of us startup and small businesses since COVID19 hit the scene.
For me, after my panic attack has subsided and many glasses of wine later, I realise that this could be more of an opportunity rather than a casualty. Because it forced me to go back to the drawing board and start looking at what was working and what wasn’t in my business.
So I examined these 4 questions or points:
1 – What is it that I enjoyed doing in my business
2 - What am I so excellent at that I could do it in my sleep
3 - What was taking up 80% of the time and only giving me 20% of revenue
4 – Who is my target audience and why do my services appeal to them
Let's look at each point really quickly….
Question or Point 1, what is that I enjoy doing in my business? I realised that I enjoyed helping people specifically women and even more specifically women entrepreneurs to create businesses that give them the freedom to live the lives they want,
I mean that is the key reason so many of us become entrepreneurs, to have the freedom to do what we want, when we want, with whom we want. All while impacting society in a positive way.
For me, this is the ultimate achievement that I wanted to make happen for women in business. I enjoyed being in partnership with these women through that process by consulting and advising them so that they can achieve this freedom.
So that’s what truly lights me up!
Question 2, what am I so excellent at that I could do it in my sleep? Brand building and sales with a big dollop of marketing. Let me give you some background, so you know I ain't just saying this for the heck of it! For the past 22 years, I have worked with some of the largest brands in the world from the Mercedes, BP, Standard Chartered Bank, Rolex, Dove, literally every category in the book helping them build their brands and create go to market strategies from a branding and marketing angle.
And I have managed sales teams with budgets in the millions.
So, when I started my own business 8 years ago, I took all this knowledge and experience applied it to build my business and my personal brand got in investors and exited and sold it in 5 years. HerWit is my 3rd venture and I bring an increased amount of knowledge and a hell of a lot more experience to be of service to women entrepreneurs that want to do the same.
Question 3, What was taking up 80% of the time and only giving me 20% of revenue?
So one of the services that I had offered with HerWit was the creation of thought leadership content for my clients where I had a small in house editorial and digital team executing this. The project management of this was taking up a hell of a lot of time and the cost versus benefit here did not make sense. I needed to take a closer at this part of the business and re-evaluate at what was contributing to 80% of revenues. When I started to go through all the data and numbers, I realised that 80% of my revenues were coming from my consulting and advisory services.
Question 4, who is my target audience and why do my services appeal to them?
When I looked at the data again, there were three clear audiences that I was attracting,
One - was female founders who were sole traders, start-ups and small businesses.
Two - were women in a corporate career making the transition to entrepreneurship or starting or had a side hustle.
Three - were professional career women from a multicultural or migrant background wanting to build their personal brands.
So, my pivot seemed really clear to me – drop the content creation, social media and digital in-house service and focus on my consulting and coaching service and laser focus on my top three target audiences.
And this clarity that I gained has resulted in me building out a new blueprint to take my business to the next level.
I know there is a lot of content out there on pivoting your business, but I personally found a lot of them move into execution stages straight off like get on social media, do more social posts, create more content, have a webinar, create an online course and 1001 other points to action on. To be honest all of this is pointless if you don’t put a strong foundation in place for growth.
Quoting words from a very wise man “when one builds his house upon a solid rock, he weathers the storm, and the builder is called wise; but the house built on the sand collapses during the storm, and the builder is called foolish".
If you guys didn’t know who that was – it was Jesus.
When I work with my tribe of women businesses, these are the fundamentals I start with - because when you start putting on the building blocks to grow – it will be built on solid rock and not sand. What happens to houses that are built-in sand, they crumble. That’s the same with businesses.
I know this for a fact because I live it every day. I walk the talk, being a startup business myself, and having run 2 other small businesses, failed at one and sold the other. I understand intimately what is going on with your business, with you as founder and as a woman in business.
So in short, ask yourself these 4 fundamental questions and be passionate about your why so that when you start, built, pivot or scale your business – it's going to not only survive but thrive.
See you next week!
We are committed to helping our #womenpreneurs, #femalefounders, #sidehustlers and more during these unprecedented times. I am offering pro bono work for my consulting services to female founders, from sole-traders to start-ups to small businesses, service-based consultants and coaches.
✅BUSINESS & SALES STRATEGIES TO START, MAINTAIN OR SCALE YOUR SMALL BUSINESS - I help businesses think "out-of-box" and discover their pitfalls, turn them into opportunities in the strategy, branding, content, marketing and sales space to help you start, maintain and scale your business. Basically I help you build out your Go-To-Market Strategy to take your business to the next level.
Click here to schedule a 20 min chat - https://calendly.com/shamila-gopalan/pro-bono-consulting
Who are we?
HerWit, translated to "Here's What I Think", a profit-for-purpose female-focused business and leadership consulting and mentoring firm.
We strive to serve firstly, womenpreneurs to start, maintain and scale their businesses through brand building, personal branding, thought leadership and sales strategies. If you’re a woman entrepreneur, service-based consultant or coach on a mission to make an impact, stand out from the crowd, and build a business you love, then let’s make that happen for you. Secondly, we serve female professionals from a multicultural and migrant background looking to scale their careers by positioning them are subject matter experts.