Let’s review. In our July post, Strategic vs Tactical Entrepreneur Which One Are You? Which One Should You Be? we explained that there are two types of entrepreneurs, the tactical and the strategic. We discussed the differences and clearly showed our preference to be strategic if you want to build a successful business.
You need to create a strategy that will build a successful business. But, before you can design your business, you need to know the why, who, what, when, and how. First, you’re going to define the purpose of your business and your unique advantages. What are you trying to achieve and what are the benefits of working with you?
Once you have a purpose and a specified advantage you can develop the blueprint for your business which will include a profit model and a marketing plan.
What is a purpose?
A purpose is defined as the anticipated outcome that guides your actions. The first part of the plan is to define what you want the outcome to be. Think of this as the vision you have for starting this business. It should be all about your customer, how your business helps them, what effect it will have on their lives, what do they want or need, and the specific benefits they will enjoy? Remember, a business exists to serve the customer.
Find your business purpose
From your prior customer research, see here if you need to learn more, what did you find that people need or want that you provide or create?
With this knowledge, you can answer the critical question: What is the purpose of your business? But if you don’t have the answer, here’s a short exercise that can help.
The starting question to answer is: What does your business do?
Follow up with the question: Why is that important? Play the Five Whys game and keep asking yourself that until you get clarity about your business. Then you’ll have a meaningful answer for the What is your business purpose?
As an example, I will use the answers to my business, Create Income Independent.
What Does Your Business Do?: Create Income Independence (CII) provides courses and programs to help aspiring entrepreneurs start their online businesses.
1-Why is that important? Aspiring entrepreneurs (AE) are people who want to take control of their life, become independent, and have financial freedom without working for someone else.
2- Why is that important? Without finding the right idea, strategy, and mindset many AE’s don’t know where to start or what to do and they either stop, fail to get a business going, or go about it in an illogical way
3- Why is that important? An AE can waste time and money with the wrong thing and get no results. They get frustrated and believe they are stuck with no way out and this is not meant for them.
4- Why is that important? They, (AE) don’t create the product or service that will help someone else. They may stay at a job they hate and at the control of the corporation. They don’t get to have the life they dream of.
5- Why is that important? Everyone should have the freedom, opportunity, and free will to do what they enjoy and stop working for others. When they succeed the world is better off having more sovereign and happy people.
What is your business’s objective? CII’s goal is to help the aspiring entrepreneur find the right idea, a clear strategy, and a successful state of mind to create build, and grow their online business.
Now it’s your turn. Go through this exercise. Know your purpose and then move on to the next part to define what makes you special.
Define your competitive advantage
With a clearly defined mission, you need to set your business apart. What makes it unique? How do you explain to prospects why they should want to work with you?
It is this difference that will make the customer choose your business over someone else. If you know what makes you special, Great. But if not here are some prompts to help you get started.
Here are four ways you can stand out. Who, what, when and how.
1-Who do you help? Is there a specific group of people you help? Do you target an audience with certain needs? For example, in Create Income Independence (CII), we target the aspiring entrepreneur who wants to start an online business.
2-What do you have to offer? Do you have special knowledge, talent, product, or information that makes you special? Example: CII offers a step-by-step guide to finding a business idea that’s right for the aspiring entrepreneur, create a strategy, and develop a success mindset.
3-When do you provide your product or service? Do you have an advantage for when you can deliver your product or service? Do you offer free overnight delivery, 24/7 service, or instant access, Example: CII makes its entire e-course available immediately. It’s not dripped out, people can read and do the work at their own pace and not wait.
4-How do you deliver your product or service? Is there a special way you get your product or service out to your customers? Do you do a live webinar, do you have a questions and answers page, coaching, or do you offer a one-to-one session? Example: CII delivers its e-course online through a learning management system, with lessons, worksheets, and an optional one-to-one Zoom session.
Put it all together
If you did all the work defined above, you now have a complete picture of your business promise and its advantage.
Put it together into a statement that shows your customers your unique value proposition. This is what you will use in your marketing and to help come up with how you monetize and market your business.
Here’s my example: Create Income Independence guides aspiring entrepreneurs to start, build, and grow an online business with a step-by-step process that helps them find a business idea, create a strategy, and develop a success mindset through an e-course and private coaching.
This has been the first step in your blueprint of a business strategy. Defining your business, its purpose, and its unique selling proposition. In the next post, we will work on planning a profit model and what you will offer.
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