Yes, I grew up watching the A-Team if you recognise this phrase, but it's true. And I do LOVE it when a plan comes together.
You absolutely need a plan in business, and while I am not a big fan of the v-e-r-y long (and let's be honest sometimes quite dull) 'business plans' that your bank manager might want to see, you absolutely DO need a plan.
Not having a plan is like navigating in the dark with no idea of where you're headed. I don't know about you but I don't turn up at the airport and just jump on the next plane and hope it takes me on a great holiday. I don't get in the car to go somewhere new and just 'hope' I'll work out how to get there. I don't even go the supermarket anymore without a list of what we've run out of! I need a plan. Things work out so much better when you have a plan.
Afterall, without a plan how do you know what's good and what's not so good? How do you know if you've 'made it'. I don't know about you, but I like to reward myself if I hit a target or complete something, so I need to know what I need to be doing in order to know I've done it! Makes sense to me :)
So what sort of plan do you need?
Well I work with a 'Star Plan'. Anyone who works with me gets a Star Plan too.
And before I go on - please be assured that a Star Plan is not the 'in' for getting your first Hollywood film role, or being the leading actor on Broadway, or winning Big Brother (!). A Star plan is the Being a Business Celebrity version of a business plan - a model for your business.
And it's pretty simple.
The star plan has 5 points
Each point on the star represents a level of service you should offer in your business. It goes from 'Gratis' to 'Getting Started', through to 'Going VIP'. So, in a nutshell it covers 'free to VIP' in just 5 steps.
And you need to have something at each level to be able to serve everyone of your ideal clients.
Free? I hear you ask :) Yes, you need to offer something for free - a sample, if you like. If someone doesn't know you or your business at all then they want to try you out. So share something of you - write some articles or a 'how to' guide, record some videos or audio that share what you know. Anything where people can see your personality, understand what you do that's different, and get some real value from it - share it for free. Hey, you could even write a blog like this!
Then you plot through the next 4 'points' on the star and offer different levels of service or products at different levels of involvement, results, intensity (whatever makes sense for your business) right up until you get to the VIP level. And if you don't have a VIP level right now, MAKE ONE!
I've certainly had it drummed into me by ALL of my business mentors that you need a VIP level in your business. Something that is the 'ultimate' way of working with you or buying your products.
Add in everything AND the kitchen sink that you know provides the ultimate service to your clients. Or take everything out (huh?). Yes, think about it - in some cases VIP means you ONLY give people exactly what they need and nothing more - the distillation of ONLY what they need is in some cases more VIP than giving people everything. Think piles of information versus ONLY the information that they need right now to move forward. Think lots of costume jewellery vs. one beautiful diamond. Understand that sometimes it's time that's the most valuable resource of your clients and if you can give them precisely what they need in 5 minutes, that's better than 5 hours (or 50 hours!). Sounds counter-intuitive, but think about it...
So have a look at your business today
Do you have a (star) plan? Do you have a way for your clients to work with you (or get to know you) at different levels?
And don't say that you only have one product so you can't do this - sure you can. Add in services, combine with complimentary products and services (that may be from partners). And if in doubt - ASK your ideal clients what more (or less) would they like?
When you have a (star) plan you know what you offer, and you can make sales much more easily. Your clients know what's on offer too - they can see how to choose how to buy from you, and you can sell up or down accordingly. Not everyone wants VIP, but not everyone wants free either.
Love your plan, and make it come together!
Want to talk more about this?
Lucy, I love the analogy of the costume jewellery v one beautiful diamond – and I know which I’d rather have!