Would you like to turn your passion into some serious profits? Leanne Sklaventitis provides these tips to help you achieve exactly that.
There are seven steps to setting up a successful business:
1. Define your passion.
2. Identify the products and services you will offer.
3. Focus on networking and marketing, both online and offline.
4. Market YOU (and you’ll never sell again!)
5. Become an expert and a leader in your field of expertise.
6. Mentor others.
7. Engage the community.
Let’s look at the top three in a little more detail.
<h4>Step 1. Define your passion</h4>
Ask yourself ‘What is my life purpose?’ Write down 100 things you would love to do in your life (even if you don’t think you have that many – you’ll be surprised).
What are the top five things on your list? How could people benefit from them? Write down some of the key things that describe you, your interests and hobbies – what are you good at?
Once you have spent some time identifying the above, you can really start to establish what drives you to get up in the morning. From there you can take the next step and consider how you can make money from your passion. You might even discover that it’s not even in the health and fitness industry.
<h4>Step 2. Identify your products and services</h4>
The key to a successful business is solving people’s problems.
Ask yourself ‘What products or services directly relate to your passion?’ ‘How could you improve things in the present market?’ ‘What does the market want and/or need?’ Can you offer a product or service that no one else does? Look at Amazon, eBay and even magazines in your local newsagents and work out what is your target market truly interested in, and what are they spending their money on?
I set up my online fitness business (www.fitnesstips.com.au) after realising that the main reason people say they don’t go to a gym or exercise regularly, is due to the perception that they don’t have enough time to do so. In response, I created a 13-week online exercise and health program, where my clients don’t even have to leave their home, yet they become accountable and remain motivated to enhance their health and lifestyle. This is achieved with weekly communication that helps them make small changes to their food intake, activity levels and mindset. By creating an online program, the costs are minimal and anyone with an internet connection becomes a potential client. It also appeals to those who may not want to venture into a fitness centre or studio.
In addition to my health and fitness programs I also offer a membership program (www.fitnesstipsmembership.com), which enables me to retain the connection with my clients, even after they’ve completed their health and fitness program. For an affordable fee, this membership offers an online educational and social environment that people can visit whenever they want.
Other ideas for web-based products or services include writing eBooks, which utilises your unique experiences and knowledge, which you can then market (both online and offline) to your audience.
The business opportunities really are endless and there is a large enough market out there, for all fitness and health professionals to successfully tap into.
<h4>Step 3. Networking and marketing</h4>
Once you have identified the product, program or service that you’ll offer, the next step is to network and market it, by using both offline and online strategies.
<strong>Offline</strong>: In a nutshell, this refers to face-to-face marketing and promotional activity, so think about who you know and connect well with and tell them about your business offering, and see how they may be able to help promote it for you.
Other offline strategies include finding a local business group and becoming involved with them. You can offer them free information and/or added value at their events, which will help you build rapport, trust and credibility within your community.
Attend industry conferences and workshops, and personal development conferences – these are all opportunities to network with like-minded people who your product or service will hold relevance to. These events are also a chance for you to learn from leaders in the industry who are doing similar things to you.
Connect with your local council and organisations that may benefit from what you have to offer. Consider developing joint ventures with similar professionals – after all, you really only need to meet one influential person who loves what you do, in order for you business to skyrocket!
<strong>Online</strong>: These strategies are, of course, the use of social media, such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest. The key to successful social media campaigns is creating engagement with people, asking them questions, and constantly providing them with added value. By doing so, people will eventually want more and more from you, but don’t feel overwhelmed.
Write yourself a social media activity or marketing plan, where you aim to spend 15 to 30 minutes a day posting to your social media networks. Then, as your business grows you can outsource the task to others in your team.
Take a look at Google Hangouts. This is a great way to meet people online, from all over the world. Offer to speak on webinars; this will also help you build credibility and establish yourself as a leader in your field. Often you’ll be able to promote your products or services to attendees during or after the event.
<strong>Step 4: Market YOU (and you’ll never sell again)</strong>
There are a number of different things you can do to market you and your business without too much effort.
Look at forming your own mastermind group with other business owners who are successful and willing to meet on a regular basis to discuss strategies and brainstorm ideas. If you are already in a business group but not getting any benefit or help to grow your business then leave and form your own.
Work on your own positive mindset (continuous, continuous). Our thoughts and beliefs will hold us back – if you don’t believe you can be successful you probably won’t be. Daily meditation, listening to personal development information, continuously working on your mindset hold the key to your success and how your market yourself.
Practice your 15 to 30 second business spiel on what you do and make it interesting. This should leave the person listening wanting to know more about what you do and engage them in further questions. This starts the rapport process.
Think about why you are different and at the same time find out what people want to establish if you can help them or not. Not everyone will be your client so be clear and focussed about what you do. They key to marketing is to find out how you can add value to other people’s businesses and how you can help solve a problem! We are in business to solve a problem – if you can narrow this down you will have clients knocking on your door.
Be sure to get involved in local Business awards and other nominations – make the time and effort to do these! You may be pleasantly surprised and even if you don’t get through you will learn so much about your business and make contact with many other business owners along the way.
Consider council funding and grants – I have pursued both of these and just through connections I have made in this process has bought more clients to me and established credibility for myself and my business.
Use free marketing tools – media releases to local papers, radio segments both locally and overseas just to name a few.
<strong>Step 5: Become an expert and a leader in your field of expertise</strong>
The more you network both online and offline, providing your knowledge and marketing yourself the more this gives you credibility and helps to position yourself as an expert in your field.
Great ways to do this is to write articles both online and offline (have you been in touch with editors of your preferred magazines to ask about providing an article?).
Look at starting your own blog if you love to write – provide quick tips and information – the key is to provide valuable content. Don’t forget videos through You Tube – this provides a face to a name and helps to build credibility quickly. What videos could you do – exercises, information sharing, quick fitness tips and much more.
What about a book or ebook? I have written many and these can be cheap to print. One of my books is an overview of my 13-week program and another is an easy to follow food plan. I sell them at expos and at speaking engagements and this is the start to getting client’s into your circle.
Think about partnering up with other experts to write a book with each person contributing one chapter. I did this with a Health for Mature Women book and partnered up with Lisa Curry-Kenny, Maggie Beer and Diana Williams (owner of Fernwood) to build my name and credibility.
Consider speaking on webinars all around the world – source various organisations online and get in touch with them – offer value to them. Other ideas include starting your own workshops – get people into a room and share your knowledge.
Partner with other speakers who have great information that you can give to others. Some of the people I have partnered with include naturopaths, hypnotherapists, sleep apnea expert, dietitians, business coaches and many more. Think about products you could potentially package and sell together creating a win/win for everyone.
<strong>Step 6: Mentor others</strong>
Once you have been in business for a few years or more you can also consider the option to mentor others in your industry. This can be provided in a number of ways providing online programs, online coaching and other information. With the great option of technology this can be done through skype, face to face, phone or videos.
Incorporating and offering business coaching into your products and services can be very rewarding and also helps others starting off in business some great advice – see <a href=”http://www.homebasedbusinesssuccessacademy.com”>www.homebasedbusinesssuccessacademy.com</a> for more information on how I help others start their journey. Do not undervalue your expertise!
<strong>Step 7: Engage the community</strong>
The final step is one of the most rewarding and that is to tap into your passion which then leads to engaging the community. One such example – I am a member of Inspire Australia – <a href=”http://www.inspireaustralia.org.au”>www.inspireaustralia.org.au</a> and organise and run a community event every three months in my area.
Invite three or four speakers who have ten minutes (like a TED talk) to speak about an inspiring event in their life. They are often not professional speakers just people who have a story to tell that leaves the audience inspired by what they hear and by what they can achieve in their own life. Find a local venue, invite business owners and anyone who is free to come along – charge a nominal fee with all the proceeds going to a nominated charity. Events such as these are a great networking opportunity and the chance to invite business leaders and other dignitaries into your circles. Don’t think they will not attend – just ask! This is another great way to promote yourself, your credibility and your business and take it to the next level.
The key to building a successful online business is to take small steps, remain focused and continue taking action. By following the above steps you’ll begin the journey of turning your passion into profit.
Ensure your products and services are inspiring, affordable and provide guidance to your recipients, every step of the way. Remember that passion breeds enthusiasm, and enthusiasm is contagious! So good luck, have fun, and enjoy your success!
For more information contact <a href=”http://email@example.com”>Leanne</a>.