3 Essential Building Blocks of a Successful Online Business
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If you are an online knowledge business owner, course creator, or membership site owner, and you want to attract more, Perfect-Fit Clients at scale then this post is essential to the success of your business. Having built many 6 and 7 figure businesses and helped countless others launch and scale online courses and memberships these three factors above all else will dictate the long-term success of your business. Even successful online business owners can overlook these fundamental building blocks, and they do so at their peril.
Every time I have been drafted in to debrief an underperforming launch the underlying cause can be traced back to one of the three elements that I share in this blog. No matter what promotional strategies, methods, or tactics you use if you hit a home run on a launch, you can be guaranteed that you have dialed in these three areas perfectly, and based on the evidence you can rinse and repeat again and again.
Applying this way of thinking in your business will vastly simplify your decision-making process and will focus your attention on the key elements that will bring about the greatest returns on the time and thought that you put into creating and refining promotions.
The 3 Key Components of A Successful Online Knowledge Business
Unfortunately, what I am about to share is not a bright new shiny trick, it isn’t a silver bullet, it isn’t sexy, it isn’t a new platform or a magic sequence of words.
But it is a tried and tested marketing principle which has withstood the test of time from way back in the days of direct mail (postal) which is as relevant (if not even more so) today as it was back then.
So what are these three essential building blocks?
- Your Offer
- Your Copy
- Your List
If your promotion exceeds your wildest expectation and “knocks it out of the park” the one thing that you can be sure of is that you have optimized all three areas. If your launch gets ok results, you have probably hit 2 of the 3 areas satisfactorily but you have missed the mark on one. If your launch flops you have probably missed the mark on all three or maybe scraped a C- in one of the three.
Across all my coaching and done for you agency clients the element that makes the biggest difference is the Offer but it is normally the area that is given the least amount of time, effort, and energy. A knockout Offer can overcome bad copy and even a bad list. Unfortunately, the best copy in the world cannot overcome a bad offer, however, a strong engaged and loyal List can sometimes make up for a weak offer. There are always some people who will just buy whatever you put out, but trust me this is no way to build a business and trust me if you rely on this your business will have a short shelf life.
The Most Important Component Of Your Online Business – Your Offer!
This is the one element that most online business owners do not spend enough time and effort on. They spend a huge amount of time focusing on tweaking their copy. Many obsess overgrowing their audience and their list. But so often they don’t spend time thinking about their core Offer.
I think often this can be explained because we have spent so long thinking about the content of our course or our membership and we are so familiar with the transformation that people can achieve that we never sit to think about how we can verbalize it in a concrete way that gets people reaching for their credit cards before we have even given them the full picture.
Your offer is the most important element of your business. You must have a compelling offer. One that makes people want to jump into action. And that action is to sign up for your course, your membership, your virtual event.
Your offer also has to have a unique mechanism. Your unique mechanism is what gets your clients the solution or the outcome that they are looking for. First, you figure out what they want. Then you tie their wants, desires, and their pain to the solution that you have. And this is the whole concept of becoming the bridge from pain island to pleasure island.
So, if you imagine your Perfect-Fit Client, they’re in pain because they don’t have something that they need. Or their current reality is not what they want they want. In other words, they want a different outcome for their life. Your job with your offer is to first show them what pleasure feels like for them. Paint a picture of a future life where they are happy and living their life in the way that they feel fulfilled.
Your Offer is the unique mechanism “the bridge” that will take them from pain island where they are living at the moment to pleasure island where they want to live. You can see why if you do a really good job with your Offer you can overcome bad copy and even a poor list.
Imagining A Better Future For Your Perfect-Fit Clients Than They Can Imagine For Themselves
The job of your copy is to connect with the challenges that people face, what they are going through on a day-to-day basis. It’s to get inside their head, to understand the language they use, and to enter the conversation that is already going on inside their head.
When you have a level of understanding of your Perfect-Fit Client that enables you to verbalize their innermost dreams, ambitions, and fears (often which they haven’t even verbalized for themselves yet) then and only then can you draft truly compelling copy
And not alone will you then be able to draft compelling copy but you will also build a bond and a connection with your Perfect-Fit Client. When you demonstrate that you understand the challenges they face, their dreams, goals, and ambitions. They will feel heard and they will feel understood.
In many ways, your job is to see a better future for your Perfect-Fit Clients. A better future they might not even have imagined for themselves. And if you can demonstrate that in your copy, you will build an engaged, loyal army of Perfect-Fit Clients.
So the first thing that you need is a knock-out offer. Then you need to back up your Offer with emotionally compelling copy that connects with your audience and lets them know that you understand them.
Strategically Aligned Community Building – Growing A Raving Group of Perfect-Fit Prospects
If you are going to invest time, effort, and money in building your list, you have to be strategic about it. Some things to consider as part of your strategy are:
- Who am I building the list for?
- What are their next steps? Where are they going?
- What do I want them to do once they are on my list?
It’s important to have this throughline from your very front-end content. Through you lead magnets, front-end offers, signature program, membership, and coaching program. And one of these components is the ultimate destination that you want your Perfect-Fit Client to arrive at. Some may go onto higher levels, some may be happy at lower levels.
The first thing you need to decide is where on your Value Ascension Roadmap would your very most Perfect-Fit Clients want to live? Once you have decided this you can set about creating the content that will attract your soon-to-be Perfect-Fit Clients. One strategy is to create pillar posts with associated lead magnets around the 4-7 key topics that your ultimate destination deals with.
A personal favourite of mine is to have a lead magnet, leading to a self-liquidating front-end offer as it prequalifies people for the launch of a signature program or back-end offer. Being strategic about the development of your content is how you get your list, launch-ready. This is how you optimize your list and get them ready to buy the offers you present.
How Do The 3 Essential Elements Overlap?
Now, the funny thing is that if you have a strong offer, you can get away with a weak copy or a weak list. A strong offer will overcome everything and it makes finding your Perfect-Fit Clients easy.
If you have a good copy, but a weak offer, things get harder. You are still in the game. But you’re not going to have an amazing promotion. If you have a really hot list with people who enthusiastically engage with you regularly, an audience who knows you understand them, you will probably get away with an okay offer and copy but your promotion will not achieve its full potential. But when you combine a hot list that is engaged and responsive with strong copy and a strong offer that’s when you crack the online business code. That’s when your business is going to take off.
So, to recap. Think about your business, think about where you are. Think about which of the three areas your business is strongest in and which needs the most work? How can you optimize each area, and which one are you going to start with? My personal preference is to always start with the Offer as it is the one where you will get the greatest return on investment.
If you were to ask the big names in the info world what they obsess about most they will all tell you “My Offer”. This is also the area I spend the most time refining and tweaking with my Impact Inner Circle Coaching Clients. So if you would like to set up a Free Focus Strategy Session to review your Offer I would love to hear from you. Simply complete the application form here and we will be in touch.