The easiest way to build a business you love and that loves you back is to do it deliberately. In other words, put together a business development plan designed to get you precisely where you want to go.
But, where do you even start, when it comes to creating such a plan?
Luckily, it’s not as complicated as you think to craft a simple, effective business plan around building a love-based business. Below are 10 steps to get you started.
Business Development Plan Step 1. Get Clear: What Do YOU Want?
It all starts with you. The clearer you are on what you want your business to look like (according to what you will be happiest with), the likelier you are to build it.
I know when I first started my business as a freelance copywriter, the only thing I considered was how much money I would make. Yes, I had this hazy idea that by having a freelance copywriting business, I would somehow have the time and space to also work on my novels, but I didn’t actually create a plan around any of that.
Needless to say, I shouldn’t have been surprised when writing my novels didn’t just naturally happen.
However, if I had taken the time to think through my business and get clear on my goals and dreams and how my business would fit into them, I most definitely would have done things differently.
My book “How to Start a Business You Love AND That Loves You Back” is full of exercises designed to help you get clear on what YOU want, so you can build it. Just enter your name and email on this page to download a free copy.
Business Development Plan Step 2. Get Clear: Which Business Model Is Perfect for You?
When I started as a freelance copywriter, I looked around at other freelance copywriters, saw they were making money, and set up the same type of business they had, so I could do the same.
That was a mistake.
I also came to discover that I wasn’t alone; so many entrepreneurs make this same mistake.
And that’s why I was so excited to welcome Shawn’s book into the Love-Based Business series. Along with learning about the four main business models, Shawn’s book contains a free assessment designed to help you determine which business model is right for you. To learn more about Shawn’s work, go hereand here.
Business Development Plan Step 3. Get Clear: Are YOU the person who can step into that business?
There’s a dirty little truth out there that no one much wants to talk about:
If your goals and dreams haven’t come true yet, it’s likely because YOU haven’t stepped fully into the person who would have accomplished those dreams and goals.
I talk about this more in my “Love-Based Goals” book, which is basically about how you can become that person, and then have your goals and dreams come true. But, for this post, I want you to look at this a little differently.
Have you stepped into the identity of the entrepreneur or business owner who would be running the business of your dreams?
If you haven’t, then it’s going to be difficult for you to take the necessary action steps to create that business. (You may find yourself distracted or overwhelmed or procrastinating, or maybe you get sick or are sucked into drama or something else happens that keeps you from moving forward.)
To build a business you love and that loves you back, you need to be in control of your emotions, rather than them controlling you.
You also need to get rid of any subconscious mindset blocks that may be standing in your way of creating your dream business.
Business Development Plan Step 4. Get Clear: Who Is Your Ideal Client?
It’s impossible to have a business you love and that loves you back if you can’t stand your clients, customers, or buyers. If you find yourself dreading getting on the phone with your clients, or your heart dropping when you see an email from them, how can you possibly love your business?
Business Development Plan Step 5. Get Clear: What Is Your Message?
Business Development Plan Step 6. Get Clear: What Precisely Are You Selling ?
Didn’t we just cover that in Step 5? Well … sort of.
What I mean here is not the transformation you’re selling, but the vehicle or medium. In other words, are you selling coaching? A book? A virtual course? An event?
You can even drill down further in some of these. Let’s take coaching, for example – what type of coaching? Private, or one-on-one? Group? VIP days? Or something else?
Also, I’d like to encourage you to make sure WHAT you’re offering is actually what your ideal clients WANT to buy. Some clients are only interested in done-for-you services. Some just want to buy a book. Some love the idea of group coaching. Some will only consider private.
If you find yourself not able to sell your offerings to your ideal clients, it may make sense to check that the vehicle you’ve chosen matches what your ideal clients want to buy.
Business Development Plan Step 7. Get Clear: What Is Your Pricing?
No, I’m not going to tell you to raise your prices. I’m going to tell you to make sure you’re COMFORTABLE with your prices.
Pricing is tricky. You need to charge enough so you feel good and valued for what you’re providing, AND so you’re able to make a decent living from it. But, you don’t want to charge so much that it becomes difficult to find ideal clients, or you’re so uncomfortable saying the actual number (because you don’t feel like you’re worth it) that you can’t sell it.
Okay, so far, these first seven steps are about building a solid foundation in your business. Once the foundation is set, you’ll be in a great position to grow and expand, which is the focus of the next steps.
But, before we move on to those, it may be smart to check out this coaching question… just to make sure you have all your ducks in a row for success and good fortune to start smiling upon you!
Business Development Plan Step 8. Get Clear: What Are Your Business Goals?
Now it’s time to look at growing and expanding … and the place to start is with your business goals.
If you have business goals, this is definitely the time to review them and make sure they’re in line with the foundation you’ve just put in place.
If you’re never set business goals before, this article is a great place to start.
Business Development Plan Step 9. Get Clear: Which Marketing Plan Is Right for You?
Marketing is the lifeblood of any business. If you’re ready to grow and expand, then this is where you need to be spending your time.
You’ll discover tons of marketing resources on this blog if you poke around a bit (from blogging to marketing trends to attracting word of mouth marketing and more), but this post is a good place to start.
If you want to put together a marketing plan you love AND loves you back, my “Love-Based Online Marketing” book will help (it even comes with a Love Your Marketing Assessment and template for creating a love-based online marketing plan).
Business Development Plan Step 10. Get Clear: What Action Can You Take Today?
This one sounds the easiest to do … and yet …
There’s a reason why there aren’t more successful entrepreneurs in the world. And, sadly, that reason is because a lot of entrepreneurs end up stopping themselves, because they don’t take consistent action.
No matter what happens, continue taking action.
In conclusion, maybe you noticed another common theme.
The more clear you are, the easier it will be to build a business you love and that loves you back.
If you want to dig into any of these topics in more detail, my Love-Based Business series can help.