We’ve moved on from Lajitas, TX … greetings from Palm Springs, CA where we will be waiting out the second half of winter.
Last week’s conversation was about getting our message out using multiple mediums. Our message is simple: how we deliver value to the people we serve. The medium is not as simple because different people prefer to get their messages in different ways – text, video, or voice. So to have the widest possible reach our message must span multiple formats.
On to this week. In Greek mythology, Sisyphus was a king who fell out of favor with the gods. Zeus condemned Sisyphus to push a boulder up a steep hill, only to have it roll back when nearing the top, till eternity. What does this have to do with our BVFLS world?
And if you’re new here, welcome aboard. This is what we do!
A sincere “Thank you” to the people who purchased my 2019 BVFLS Practice Development Marketing Plan. It was my debut digital product and y’all made it a big hit. And, in part, it inspired this post.
Here is one depiction of Sisyphus.
Today, the Sisyphus tale is seen as a metaphor for an individual’s persistent struggle against an absurdity of life. In our BVFLS world, I believe that absurdity is our 1:1 client service business model.
One-to-One Business Model
For the most part, our traditional client service model is 1:1, 1-and-done. That means those last year clients must be replaced this year to maintain the “old” revenue status quo. But to grow, we must add more new clients than the number that dropped off. Then that many more clients need to be replaced the following year to maintain the “new” revenue status quo.
But it is more than just finding new clients. Because even if we are good at attracting leads and converting them into new clients, we have to deliver the work … each year … every year … into perpetuity (or eternity).
We trade our time for client dollars. And since there are only so many hours in a day, we can only serve so many clients in a year. This model does not scale. We are pushing the boulder up a hill. We are Sisyphus.
Here’s where you say, “Fine, Rod, what is the alternative?”
The alternative is something I’ve written about before – a 1:many or 1:masses business model.
One-to-Many Business Model
Imagine creating a course or webinar series (based on work we’ve done in the past or valuation issues we are researching now) that is taught multiple times a year for an industry or trade association – and we get paid to present it. Once the course is prepared it only needs occasional updates, each requiring much less time than the original prep work. But our presenter fee stays the same (or, gasp, increases).
Or maybe it’s a quarterly value improvement mastermind program we lead for business owners in our practice area or industry niche. Every quarter requires fresh content, but we can charge whatever the market will bear. (Some mastermind groups charge $25k or more per head).
Both examples are scalable: little or no incremental work is required for one more attendee. Both examples can generate leads to make filling our 1:1 funnel easier.
One-to-Masses Business Model
This model involves using our intellectual property to create apps, books, checklists, courses, newsletter, templates, or webinars that, perhaps, hundreds of players in our respective niches are interested in and will want to buy.
The most successful and wealthy entrepreneurs in the world are the ones who create and sell intellectual capital. ~ Dan Sullivan, founder of Strategic Coach®
It starts with being known for what we know. Then leveraging that knowledge, educating our niche, and selling a product/service multiple times and charging per order (like my 2019 marketing plan) – which makes this work scalable. It also is the difference between being an expert or a service provider.
The best exemplar of this model in our industry is Jim Hitchner with his newsletter, toolkits, and webinar series.
1:1 is the epitome of working harder (pushing the boulder up the hill).
1:many and 1:masses is the epitome of working smarter.
Do you want to break out of this rut?
I think every practice should strive for some mix of 1:1, 1:many, and 1:masses work. For example, the 1:1 work gives us credibility to do the 1:many and 1:masses work. Again, look at Jim Hitchner.
But I think most of us will always operate in the 1:1 world (our comfort zone) because we tell ourselves we’re too busy serving that world to think about the potential of the other worlds. Even though there is greater leverage in the 1:many and 1:masses models. Even though we complain that our 1:1 fees are being squeezed by [add your reason here].
I don’t know about you, but I want to change.
And as we head into a new year, it’s the perfect time for change.
If you want to scale your business model … if you want an alternative to pushing the boulder up the hill … email me. If there is enough traction, I would like to form a small community of people interested in exchanging ideas, sharing knowledge, and creating something different.
In real life
My 2019 marketing plan was my first attempt at a 1:many digital product.
It took me a few hours to create, design, and market.
And then the work was done.
There was no incremental work required for a new order.
And the orders came in.
I am going to do more of this 1:many work in 2019.
How about you?
Are you in?
– If you like what I write about, tell a colleague.
– If something resonates and you want to reach out directly, email me.
– If you think we share common interests, connect with me on LinkedIn.
– If you want a sense of how well your practice is working for you, take this Practice Self Assessment.