Launching a new business can be an exciting experience! You finally get to see all of your hard work and planning come together—and oftentimes, the community is more than happy to explore what you have to offer. But then what? Maintaining your momentum after the initial excitement of being a new business wears off is a common challenge faced by many entrepreneurs—including Twila Ortiz.
Twila is the owner of Lafayette’s newly established tea shop, Flying High Tea. After losing her job due to the pandemic, she was able to take a close look at herself, what she wanted to do, and what Lafayette was missing. Reflecting on her time traveling the world and visiting tea shops along the way, she decided she wanted to bring her love of tea back home. Now, after over a year of planning and pivoting, Flying High Tea is officially open and welcoming customers.
However, Twila knows this initial buzz around her business won’t last forever.
In this consultation episode of Priority Pursuit, we talk with Twila about the three key things you need to keep in mind to keep the momentum going for your business.
What should you focus on after launching your new business?
Oftentimes, many new small business owners have an idea of what they want to happen during the launch of a new business, but in reality they're keeping their fingers crossed and hoping that it goes well. And when it does, they’re excited and intimidated at the same time. However, this initial success can inspire great leaders to start thinking about what happens when the excitement and newness eventually wear off.
The good news is that there are three key things you can do to ensure that you continue to serve your current customers well, attract new customers, and grow your business.
- Build and maintain strong relationships with your customers
- Continuously look for ways to improve your products, services, and customer experience
- Use the flywheel approach to marketing
Build and maintain strong relationships with your customers.
One of the most important ways to develop relationships is to provide excellent customer service because this is what keeps people coming back. People want to feel important, and by ensuring that every interaction with your customers is friendly, helpful, and professional—you’ll do just that.
While this is a great way to build brand loyalty, you also need to take the time to ask why people are coming into your business. Learn what they are excited about and ask them what makes them come back—or in for the first time.
You can do this by simply asking, having a short survey linked to a QR code at each table, station, or register, or making it part of the rewards sign-up—there are literally so many ways to ask your customers for their feedback. Don’t be afraid to get creative and make a solution catered to your business and what you think your customers will respond to best.
It is also important to take note of what they're really saying to you and to look for a common theme. You can use this information to improve your offerings and to develop clear and concise marketing messages later on that will attract more of your ideal customers.
Essentially, you need to make it a point to understand why your customers—especially the ones you’d like 100 more of—choose to come into your business.
Continuously look for ways to improve your products, services, and customer experience.
In the early stages of a small business, it's common to have to make adjustments to your original business model to ensure that it is profitable and sustainable—and to make sure that you’re meeting the needs of your customers. This could involve changing the pricing strategy, identifying new revenue streams, or pivoting your business’s marketing messages away from what you thought your ideal customers needed to hear and focusing on what they’re telling you they really want.
The task of asking for your customers' feedback and listening to them should never stop. As time goes on, they may come up with ideas, package combos, sales, and promotions that you might not have thought of because you’re too close to the business.
Your customers are the ones experiencing your brand for the first time without any preconceived notions—other than maybe hearing about you or seeing your sign as they drive by. They will have fresh eyes to evaluate your offerings and opportunities—giving you a true snapshot of your business.
Additionally, pay attention to what products and services are your best sellers. Then you need to be sure to tell your customers about them often—especially in-store and on your website. Because when you do everything you can to ensure your customers are happy and well taken care of, they will tell other people about that experience which drives more word-of-mouth traffic (a.k.a free marketing).
Use the flywheel approach to marketing.
Once you’ve developed a relationship with your customers and established an exceptional customer experience, it’s time to move on to strategically marketing your business.
The flywheel method is when your marketing efforts (like your website, social media, paid ads, and content) all work in sync to create a self-sustaining process that continuously brings in leads and prospects. The flywheel approach allows you to see growth even when you’re not in the office or paying much attention to your marketing and is the most effective way for small businesses to reach their ideal customers and build marketing systems that actually work.
Let’s take a look at how it works.
The first step in the flywheel method is to define your ideal audience and clarify your messaging.
Without clear messaging, you won’t be able to connect with your ideal customers.
You can build a stunning website, post a reel a day, implement sales funnels, and do all of the marketing things you’re “supposed to do”—however, all of these efforts and tactics are a waste of time, money, and resources if your messaging isn’t clear.
This is part of why listening and paying attention to your best customers is so important. By understanding what they want or expect, you can create messaging that will appeal to and attract more of your ideal customers. As such, it is crucial that you clarify your message before deciding things like which social media platforms you’re going to use or how much money you’re going to invest in Google ads.
At Treefrog, we use a story-based marketing framework that utilizes the seven elements found in any great story to develop a brand story that is cohesive and clear and simplifies every talking point, communication asset, and sales piece your business creates or sends out.
You may be asking, “Why would a business want to use a story-based framework to create marketing messaging?” Well, the answer is simple—very few of us can retain lists of facts and statistics. But, we’re 22 times more likely to remember information when it is presented in a story-like framework.
This is why we always suggest writing what we call Marketing Guiding Statements before you do anything else. Marketing Guiding Statements are written guidelines that use the story-based frame to position your brand and business as a trusted partner. The process of writing these guidelines or statements gives you the information you need to write clear, concise, effective messaging.
Want to learn more about Marketing Guiding Statements and how to clarify your business’s message? Take our FREE mini course!
The second step in the flywheel method is to develop a strong foundation by creating or updating your website.
Your website is your small business’s most powerful marketing tool and must be created with your audience in mind.
When creating or updating your website, remember to use your Marketing Guiding Statements to create content that helps people solve problems and do the things you want them to do.
There are seven things your website needs to have in order to be successful:
1. A Clear Message
As we just discussed, a clear message is crucial for connecting with your audience. Use your Marketing Guiding Statements to drive the majority of copy on your website.
2. A Clear Header
The most important section on your website is the header. At the very top of your homepage—or any page for that matter—you need to tell people exactly what you offer in a way that they can understand in two or three seconds or less. This way, your website visitors will immediately know if you offer what they’re looking for and if you can help them.
3. A Value Proposition
To be effective, your website also needs to include a value proposition—which is simply a clear list of what they’ll receive when they invest in your services.
4. A Three-Step Plan
Next, your website needs to include a three-step plan. To help put your audience at ease and so they know what to expect when they decide to do business with your brand, include a three-step plan that leads potential customers through your process and details how working with your business will end in success.
5. Direct Call to Action
In addition to having a straightforward plan, your website also needs to include a clear call to action (CTA). In other words, you need to clearly invite your website visitors to do something.
To help your potential customers trust that you know what you’re doing and so that you don’t have to awkwardly brag about yourself, we recommend including testimonials from happy customers throughout your website to help you establish authority.
Not including pricing on your website—even if it’s just a starting price—can come across as nontransparent and maybe even a little shady to potential customers. As a result, be sure to include pricing on your website.
The third step in the flywheel method is to create good content and a sales funnel.
People want to interact with the information they want—not what you want them to know—and they want to do it on their own time.
This is why creating content that helps you act as a guide is extremely important. When you use content such as blogs, videos, and downloads to pique curiosity or provide guidance, you’ll get your audience to willingly engage with you. However, this needs to go beyond asking people to sign up for your newsletter. The content and sales funnel development need to be purposeful and help the reader want to do business with you.
This brings us to the fourth and final step of the flywheel method which is getting your information in front of your audience.
In order to get the attention of your audience, you have to get your content in front of them with little to no effort on their part. This means using tactics such as search engine optimization, social media ads, Google ads, and strategic emails to attract and lead prospects to your website.
Once you’ve built a strategic website, the easiest way to reach your potential customers is to use social media advertising. To be successful, your social media ads should lead someone back to a piece of content on your website—not just the main page where they have to figure out what to do next.
Overall, when using the flywheel method to reach your audience, you first need to clarify your messaging and use it to create a customer-focused website, then develop content that will entice your customers to engage with you, and finally use paid ads to drive people to the content on your website.
Want to hear more?
Listen to the full Priority Pursuit episode (at the top of the page or wherever you listen to podcasts) to hear Kelly go more in-depth on how to keep the momentum going in your business as she chats with Twila and answers her questions. If you would like to check out Flying High Tea and connect with Twila, you can visit her website at flyinghightea.com or find her on Instagram (@flyinghightea) and Facebook (@flyinghightea).
And, if you’re ready to get started on developing the first step of the flywheel method—be sure to sign up for our free marketing mini course: “The First Step to Effective Marketing for Small Businesses: Writing Your Marketing Guiding Statements”.
Links & Resources Mentioned in This Episode
- Learn How to Write Your Marketing Guiding Statements
- Learn More About Flying High Tea
- Receive $10 Off Your First Three DoorDash Orders (That’s $30 Total)
- Receive 50% Off Your First Year of HoneyBook
- Learn More About Treefrog’s Small Business Marketing Resources & Services
- Join the Priority Pursuit Facebook Community
- Follow or DM Treefrog Marketing on Instagram
- Follow or DM Kelly Rice on Instagram
- Follow or DM Victoria Rayburn on Instagram
The Priority Pursuit Podcast is a podcast dedicated to helping small business owners define, maintain, and pursue both their personal and business priorities so they can build lives and businesses they love.
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