This is a transcript for episode 23 of the OMGrowth podcast, published on April 21, 2021
Sometimes, you feel like you don’t know what you’re doing. We all get that feeling, boss, and we all have the moments of crying in the shower or the Target parking lot.
Heck, every day, I struggle with what should be a very basic question for me to answer: is it pronounced dat-ah or day-tah? I don’t know!
So listen… it’s OK if you don’t feel 100% on-point sometimes, and today we’ll talk about what you CAN do when you feel that way.
THE LOW-LYING FRUIT
My first recommendation if you’re feeling like you don’t know what you’re doing is to look at what other people are doin… and I don’t mean your competition.
Check out what people are doing on your website.
Not just any people either; look at the ones who are doing what you want them to do.
One of the priority behaviors you’re looking for are people signing up to your email list. Where are those people coming from? What are they most likely to look at before signing up? How long are those people staying on your site? How many pages are they looking at?
Once you see and identify the patterns and trends of the people who become subscribers, you can start to lean into the behaviors you can literally see are working for you.
Same goes for sales. Hone in on what magic lock combination is taking place most often when you convert sales.
Heck, you can wash-rinse-repeat this process at the total extremity and figure out what trends you’re seeing around people who are immediately leaving – or what your analytics will call a high bounce rate – without engaging with your site at all.
This is the low-lying fruit to figuring out what you should do next because you’re taking the lead from what other people are doing.
If you’re feeling at a loss, I’m hard-pressed to think of anything more inspiring than actually seeing what is working. This can be inspirational stuff – and I do mean inspirational! – because it often inspires you to make the kinds of changes and adjustments that can lead more people down your desired path.
Not sure how to see these types of things? I always recommend to creative bosses that they should have a Dashboard on hand that can help them visualize – literally see! – where that low-lying fruit is for them in their business.
GET SOME FUNNEL VISION
I was putting together a quarterly performance report for a client that gave me “the feels” because their results really reinforced my desire and focus on improving what I’m already working with.
Almost 40% of their overall revenue was being generated by their email list, and another 40% was through organic – hello free! – search traffic coming from Google and Pinterest. Not Instagram, not Facebook, not ads, not a fancy funnel – email list and search engine optimization, or what the cool kids call SEO.
And let’s clarify that this client is selling low-priced products and is generating healthy 5-figure months… without all the bells and whistles.
I have mad-love the 80/20 rule that says 80% of your results will come from 20% of your efforts.
They’ve put the work in to fine-tune how they’re being found, how they’re selling, what their audience wants – and the results are reflecting that, where 80% of their revenue is being generated by 20% of their output.
Any new digital marketing strategies they choose to introduce to their operations like ads or an evergreen funnel will only potentially add to their revenue without impacting their current bottom line because they have the systems in place to support a smooth running and very lucrative way of operating – and that’s an OMGrowth moment if ever there was one.
I’m pursuing my own OMGrowth moments with a “tunnel vision” approach to the digital marketing strategies I’m choosing to move forward with – the details of which I’ve been sharing with my behind-the-scenes episodes – but my technique is to be uber-focused on one area I can maximize the results from instead of working on 3 different things at once and seeing “ok” results from each.
Every time I have a new strategy or campaign idea,
I ask myself if I can dedicate the laser-focus required to deliver OMGrowth results.
The answer is usually no. And even when it’s a maybe, the follow-up question of whether it’ll deliver bigger OMGrowth results than the things I’m currently working on usually solidifies that for me.
You have these areas in your business. Whatever you’re thinking about right now – that thing that you know if you tweaked a little or invested some closer focus or even delegated and got help with – that may be super-tedious and unglamorous or annoying, but you know deep down is THE thing you should be focused on… focus on it, so that IT can focus on delivering you the results you know to be at the end of that rainbow.
LEAN INTO YOUR STRENGTHS
And I’ve said this before but when I say “you”, I just mean that you need to make the decision that this is what you’re going to focus on.
Being the boss doesn’t make you a subject matter expert in everything.
Whether it’s the tasks to see the workload through or developing and implementing a digital marketing strategy – if the subject matter in question isn’t your strength or in your wheelhouse – you’d be better off getting a little help.
—> Maybe that looks like an audit of your current operations and performance.
—> Maybe it’s signing up for a VIP Day that will help you put a custom strategy in place.
—> Maybe it’s hiring someone to help you – and be better than you – at the actual tasks.
The point is that YOU have mad talents, skills and expertise you bring to the table… but you can’t bring those to the table if you’re so concerned with making yourself an expert in a whole new field.
You know I love examples so here’s a home-grown one: I teach bosses how to see their goals and plans and online performance because I believe those to be skills every boss needs to own the bossy pants.
What I don’t believe is that bosses need to become junior analysts to do so and this is why I don’t teach Google Analytics and I typically discourage bosses who have no intention on becoming analysts from getting in too deep.
At best, a course on Google Analytics will make you an intermediate-level user and any time you need to trouble-shoot something, it will feel like you’re in a medieval water torture chamber… and you’ll likely have to hire a pro who lives and breathes this stuff to do it for you anyways. For $100, you can hire someone on Upwork to verify that your tracking pixels and ecommerce settings are properly installed.
POST-NOTE: I’ve since changed my stance on Google Analytics as my choice for analytics software and there are simpler, more privacy-compliant options like Fathom Analytics and Plausible that don’t have that steep learning curve to understanding what your numbers are telling you.
Your role and responsibility as the boss is to BE “the boss”.
Not the analyst, not the accountant, not the assistant. Leading is its own job and it’s a skill that takes plenty of strengthening of its own.
You’re better off honing that than you are at trying to be and do #allthethings.
Which brings us to the moment of the show where we figure out what-the-hey this means for you by getting some ACTION ITEMS in place!
1) Find the low-lying fruit.
I love an easy win and nowhere will those easy wins be more obvious for you to identify than in a dashboard.
If you don’t have dashboards in your business yet, get yourself some.
If you do have dashboards, block a Taster’s Choice moment in your calendar with a few hours reserved for you and your dashboards to figure out what people are doing, how the people who ARE doing what you want them to do are navigating your website, and see how you can connect the two.
—> Maybe there’s a video you need to feature more front-and-center that is keeping people on your website longer.
—> Maybe there’s a specific blog post or set of topics that are really resonating with your audience.
—> Maybe people aren’t finding what they’re looking for from you and they’re hitting the 404 page.
Clock what’s happening in your digital home and see what you can do about delivering a cozier experience.
2) Get focused.
If you’re feeling “all over the place”, it’s probably because you are, in fact, all over the place.
—> Maybe client work is complicating your ability to promote digital products: this may be a good time to start streamlining things or to bring on some help.
—> Maybe being present on social is slowly chipping away at you: this may call for a VIP Day from a content manager who can help you develop a repurposing strategy and content creation schedule you can actually feel good about.
—> Maybe you’re not seeing the kind of results from your digital marketing strategies that you’d hoped for: this could be an opportunity for you to laser-focus on each of them, one at a time, and put an OMGrowth system in place that will get you the results you want.
There’s the expression that what you focus on grows and while I support that message, I’d like to add to it that “what is scotch-taped together will eventually fall apart.” My system for Pinterest – or rather haphazard lack thereof – as detailed in episode 20 is evidence of that.
But as my last episode detailed, your focused attention is how you turn those results around to the direction you want them to be headed in.
3) Leadership is your expertise.
You don’t have to – and nobody expects you – to be a subject matter expert at everything. The better you are at doing #allthethings, the further removed you tend to be from being the bee’s knees at the one thing you business needs most from you: which is to be the boss who leads this mothership into the vision you have for it.
Schedule the CEO Days. Track where you’re spending time. Set some Key Performance Indicators for yourself and if you need help with that, check out this podcast episode on “What Do I Do on a CEO Day?”
Doing the work is mega-important – I totally get that – but you have a responsibility to define what that work is, and how much of a time and energy investment it’s going to be.
Because you’re the boss, apple sauce! And nobody’s going to do that for you.
The truth is that when we feel at a loss for what to do, it’s because we aren’t being clear about the direction we’re taking, either with our results, our efforts, or even ourselves.
And since we’re drinking the truth serums here: saying “I want a 10K month” isn’t a clear direction. Of course you’re going to feel some type of way and all-kinds-of lost when you keep falling short of these types of goals that aren’t even accounting for who and what you’re working with.
I like working in percentage for that reason and you have so much more control and empowerment over the outcome when you say things like:
“I want to increase my sales page visits by 10%.”
“I want to double my sales this launch.”
“I want to cut down my work hours by 25%.”
Because that’s how optimizing works. That’s how growth works. It’s being better than you were last time, it’s improving the leadership you bring and the results that generates, it’s spit-shining your brilliance over and over again.
You’re never actually stuck. You may lack a little inspiration, but I believe that when you tap back into all the amazing work you’ve done and you connect with your inner greatness, you can’t help but rekindle that inspiration that you started your business with in the first place.