Recently I met with a new client to discuss their marketing efforts and how they can launch/grow their business. They use to do workshops, on select weekends, for free and they had a huge interest (and a waiting list). People would tell them they would gladly pay for this workshop… so they started charging.
They told me, “I don’t understand why our business isn’t growing. People wanted this. We had a huge waiting list. Why aren’t they scheduling workshops.” Then I asked the one critical question, “Do people need to schedule the workshops themselves or do you create a workshop and just have people sign up?” Want to guess what happened next? One of Oprah’s famous “ah-ha moments”. They were not scheduling sessions and having people sign up – they expected people to just call and organize a workshop themselves. That got them thinking, “Of course. Why don’t we schedule a few sessions and just promote those.” It is a better use of their marketing dollars and much easier on a potential customer.
The lesson here? Sometimes it pays to just sit down with someone who isn’t involved in your business to get some clarity in how to grow your business. Seems like a simple statement – but it requires that you put yourself out there and show someone your weaknesses… and in some cases fear.
Being on the board of two non-profits, I see the benefits of this on a weekly basis. Board members from different backgrounds have different perspectives and ideas … and that just make us all a little better.
Of course, be smart in who you talk to – make sure it is someone who you value and respect. Talk to people with different backgrounds, perspectives and interests.
So get out there. Put yourself out there. Share and listen to what people have to say… you may have your own “ah-ha” moment.