Well it has been 9 months since our last Building In Front Of You shows and there is allot ground to cover.
Today I am going to hit you with the things on my desk and issues we are dealing with after 39+ months of operation.
These are not in priority order or sequence - just hot and burning a hole in our calendar.
Let’s start with STARTUPS ARE EXPERIMENTS.
This is a topic we have covered and discussed on multiple shows. If you have, what you think, is a great idea for a product and service, the first challenge is to test it. Other than getting your financials in order, this is your highest early priority. What is the Minimal Viable Offer (MVO) you can create that delivers value to customers and provides you with real-time feedback.
Here is our lesson.
1. We had to create an internal Marketing Agency for our Hosts to attract and retain OnAir talent. Our initial assumption was if the host was provided 365 days of marketing collateral in 13 weeks - they were able to build the sales funnel. WRONG.
Our Hosts have the same challenges we have with working IN and ON the business at the same time. We had to assume some if not the majority of the marketing responsibilities in order to provide ROI. In our case the MVO had to be expanded to add these features.
2. Holding customers, our Hosts, became an issue as well. Within 2, maybe 3 seasons - ½ to ¾ of a year is all the content that could easily be produced. In short the Hosts started running out of ideas.
This problem becomes acute when you consider the prevailing mindset in marketing is content creation. It appears all small businesses need some help and support in creating new content. Our focus is working on the sales funnel, either more qualified leads into the funnel or closing accounts in it. Marketing to create leads is a more generic issue and uses current issues to gain attention. The challenge of the sales funnel constantly changes because the aspirations, pain points, and objections are specific to each account. The third part, becoming a thought leader, requires the Host to educate the audience on where their offer is headed. Dare I say Marketing Agency?
3. This is our universal problem in the early stages of the business, more to do than time and people. Both Donna and I have been getting crispy trying to handle today while building the future. This puts a strain on the senior team, if there is one, because everybody is overworked and feels as if they are doing more than the partners or other leaders in the firm. This will only get resolved when the business is better organized and there are more hands and brains available to handle the tasks.
There are no other solutions than increasing revenue, working more efficiently, and building the infrastructure to hire talent. My approach is the same as covered in my Operations shows. Map the process, eliminate wasted time and steps, fully burden the remaining steps with true costs, write SOP’s, create position descriptions, and current and future organizational charts.
4. Hiring talent is the logical next step. If you haven’t built the infrastructure then training time is expanded and generates the feeling I can do this faster and cheaper. The investment in the infrastructure discussed previously will ensure you are hiring the right candidates and have collapsed the training time to a minimum.
We had the luxury of interns in 2022 but they didn’t workout for the reasons I just listed. They couldn’t work alone and we didn’t have enough time to keep them in the game. Everybody involved was guilty of not making it work.
One more thought before we close today’s show. It is imperative that you know when to hire and which positions. What we are doing, not there yet, is to look at what the executive team is performing and that can be handled by someone else making less money. Also, be clear of your requirements for hiring. The one we employ there must be 6 months of salary in the bank before we hire. I don’t want to be in a situation where we have to let promising talent go because we had a shortfall in revenue.
new choice for BUSINESS SEARCH