I’m the owner of a dance studio that is 27 years old. We’ve had about 17 years of great success and profit. However, over the last five years we’ve really struggled with making a profit. The pandemic has further compounded the issue. We’ve hired two people to manage our social media, rebuilt our website and paid for boosted ads on Facebook, but we’ve not gotten any real results. We need to turn this thing around and connect with our customers before we are forced to close our doors.
Trying to Stay Afloat
Hello Trying to Stay Afloat,
A lot has changed over the last year and a half. Many business owners have found themselves in the same or similar situations. When you’re facing this sort of situation it is an indication that you have reached a pivot point which requires that you reevaluate your business or begin the process of allowing it to deteriorate. As the CEO of your company you have to decide which path to take.
If you decide to pivot, here’s the five steps you want to take to move your company forward.
- Reevaluate what problem you’re solving in the market. Determine how the work you do can be the solution for an issue someone is facing. Your dance studio could help keep at-risk youth off the street or help get the seniors in your community moving again to stay healthy.
- Decide who you’re solving the problem for. It is very important to have an avatar/ideal customer/target audience. If you haven’t decided who you’re working to help, you will more than likely find yourself helping no one. Identifying your target will help you understand how to communicate with them, where to communicate with them, and how to connect your solution to their problem.
- Research your target’s top three issues in your area of expertise. The best businesses solve a problem that exists in the marketplace. Identifying your target’s top three issues will help them understand why your service is important to them. Remember, customers want to know what’s in it for them (WIIFM).
- Understand how your top three products/services solve their top three issues. Many think it’s best to tell clients all of the services they offer. However, research shows if you give clients too many options, they won’t make a decision. So, it’s important that you connect your main three services with the top three issues your customer base is facing so they understand the value you bring.
- Create a plan that spells out the avenues you will use to connect with the audience you will serve. Understanding where your client goes to find the kind of solutions you offer is the key to a successful pivot. If your client normally uses YouTube to learn new dance moves and techniques this would be a great place to advertise and share content relevant to their issue and how you solve it.
The pivot is not easy, however, with a clear plan of action and dedication to the process and your work you will not only stay afloat, but find your ship sailing in clear waters again. You’re the captain of your ship. Determine where you want to be and point your boat in that direction.
Where dreams happen!