While the actual threshold of what’s considered a “sizable” investment into your business can vary from person to person, the mixed bag of thoughts that can come along for the ride doesn’t.
You’re excited because you are looking for a shift and can see how this is it.
You’re nervous because some past investments haven’t gone the way you wanted them to.
You’re so ready to dive in and get started that you feel like you’re a child the week before Christmas.
You’re questioning if you just made a huge mistake going this route that you’ll kick yourself for later.
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in business, this mix of thoughts can come up for us all.
It comes with the territory of being stretched out of your current comfort zone. Personally, financially or both.
However, there’s a way to not only kick the negative thoughts to the side but do so in a way that’s based on straightforward facts.
I’m going to take you through exactly how I continue to make investments in my business that are in complete alignment with what my business needs – which saves time, money and stress.
The Fastest Way to Regret an Investment in Your Business? Starting with Incomplete Metrics
Last month, I caught a comment on one of my Facebook ads from someone saying that she wants to see screenshots every number in my business before believing that I’m “legit” and grabbing my free opt-in. (Nope, can’t make these things up.)
Ok, right on that. Would you also like my jean size and a copy of my license? (sarcasm = heavy)
Empathy. The online space can absolutely be the wild wild west, which leaves a lot of people unsure of what direction to turn… maybe she’s been burned in the past and is using this as a way to “vet” me?
This is actually a big part of the problem when it comes to investing in your business.
Making decisions in your business, solely based on someone’s list size, bank account or sales numbers is the fastest way to failure.
You see, while numbers are important for business owners as a whole, screenshots or talk of someone else’s alone don’t even come close to telling the full story of a business OR how they can help you.
Did it take them a few years at a steady pace?
Did they spend $859505 in ads with that number not even being profit?
Did they still honor the areas in life I want to honor?
Did they need to take on an investor or partner?
Did they have a team behind them or where they solo?
Did they work the type of hours I’m looking to work?
In other words….
Does how they got there even align with YOUR vision for success?
Without having the full story and journey at play, someone else’s numbers mean nothing.
Yet, this is what many business owners make investment decisions based off of.
An incomplete metric to a much bigger picture.
And the result has turned into an entire industry filled with more stories than I can count of people who have dropped tens of thousands of dollars, to only be left in the same spot as before (or, worse).
So then, how do you determine what is the best fit for you and your investment?
Step 1: Follow, Consume, Implement
Is there someone talking about an area in business you currently need support in, that you’re feeling connected to?
You may have seen their content on social media, heard them on a podcast or met to them at an event. Either way, something they said connected with you.
Next, you’re going to do three things:
- Follow them on social/join their list.
- Consume their content.
- Implement what you learn from that content.
(Note: Number three is the most important and often skipped. Even implementing ONE thing that you learned from them will start to give you a feel for how this person can help you.)
Right now, you are in the consume phase of this step.
You follow me (thank you!) and are interested enough in this topic to consume this blog (thank you x 2!). From there, my hope is that you implement what I cover into your own business to supercharge your own investments.
As you do this, you’ll be able to see them for who they truly are (and if that’s in alignment for you). This means everything from how they work, to how they teach/support their clients and their personality.
If they do, awesome! We can move to Step 2!
If not, now you know and you most likely picked up a tip or two in the process.
Unfollow them and move along.
There’s no reason to consume just for the sake of consuming. You only want to follow those you are learning from and/or connecting with.
Step 2: Identify Your Personal Business Investment Success Formula
What have I have seen from the women I’ve worked with time and time again when it comes to getting an ROI on investments in their business?
The true power comes from identifying and asking for what they need at this stage of growth.
Forget everyone else and what they’re doing. This is about you.
We’re going to do this with a few simple questions about your previous investments.
Think back to any investment that pushed you out of your comfort zone in the past two to three years and list out the following:
- What did you love about what you received/what was provided?
- What did you wish there was more of? Less of?
- What did you wish you knew ahead of time?
You’ll want to answer these questions for each individual investment you can think of that stretched your comfort zone at the time.
As you list them all and answer these questions, you will start spotting the commonalities in answers. These will become your personal path for investing in your business as you begin to see how you work best.
For myself, this is how I learned that I do best with investments that provide high access, limited amounts of people, timelines and accountability through financial responsibility. Also, that I really have to jive with the person from a personal side as well and that their business doesn’t take over their life.
This means that no matter how many pep talks I want to give myself, investing in anything that doesn’t meet my commonalities for success is pointless because the proof is right there.
By asking yourself these same questions and seeing what comes up, you’ll find your own investment success formula.
The goal is to only invest in things that honor that.
(And yes, that includes even if you’re like me and your formula shows that you don’t do so well with self-study or low priced. Don’t be upset with yourself. Instead, see the true savings! Instead of buying sixteen different self study programs, when I know I’m wired for high access, I’m putting all the money I would have spent in pieces into one investment.)
Find your investment success formula and trust in it enough to follow it.
Step 3: Be Willing to Ask for What You Need
You’ve been following and implementing what this person is sharing online, it’s in an area of your business that you know you need support in and you’ve identified your personal investment success formula…
Now it’s time to bring the two together and ask for what you need before committing.
Depending on the price point and/or the individual’s sales process, this could be via a discovery call or email.
I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t include an option in emails and/or on a call to ask questions.
However, I can think of numerous times where people mentioned not investing in something because they “weren’t sure if it was right for them” OR investing in something and it not “living up to expectations.”
For the love of cookies (and your success)…
Ask first and give yourself the knowledge you need to make the best choice for you.
Remember, you have your personal investment success formula to pull questions from. Ask ones from what went well (to see if they offer a similar approach) and what didn’t (to see if you’re about to put yourself in a similar scenario).
Also, if you are investing in something you’ve never invested in before, feel free to ask those who already have in the past the same what they wish they knew before as an additional way to ask questions specific in regards to that work.
This is your opportunity to lay all the cards out on the table. Use it.
For Done for You Services this could include:
- What happens after the service is delivered? Is there any follow up support or action taken?
- Will I be able to take this and run with it, or will you need to do any future updates/changes?
- Are there other expenses I should expect in the process (tools, team support, etc) in order to put your work into action?
- What will you need from me in order to do your service more effectively?
- How often do you send a report (FB ads management, lead gen, social media, etc.) or status update on what’s happening?
- Have you worked with a business in my industry already and/or one with a similar goal? If so, how did it go?
- Who is my point of contact throughout this work, you or someone else?
For 1:1 Coaching/Consulting/Strategy this could include some of the above as well as:
- What kind of access to you can I expect during our time together?
- What happens in between our calls/sessions if something comes up?
- If you suggest me doing something one way and I want to do it a different way, how would that work?
- Is there a way to continue working with you, beyond our time frame, if I need more support?
- My goal is X by X, is that within your scope to be able to fully support?
These are just examples of questions that help to clarify what you don’t know already from Step 1 and/or to make sure the investment aligns with your success formula in Step 2.
Feel free to make a list based on what comes up for you, and don’t be afraid to use it.
Knowledge is Powerful (and So is Your Gut)
Once you’ve completed all three steps, you’ll have your own fail-proof way of making sure any investment in your business is the best fit for you and your goals.
By this point, you’ll also feel the right choice in your gut and, in case you haven’t heard me say this before, your gut knows what’s up.
Whether it took a week or a month to go through these steps, the combination of them comes with 100% certainty that you made the best choice for you because you’re making decisions based on the full facts.
No internet hype.
No next shiny thing.
Just what you need – now.
This means that even when those mindset gremlins try to jump in (because they will!), you can simply smile with full confidence that this investment was chosen because it was right for you.
And nothing else matters.