As a service-based solopreneur we are often bombarded with messages from business coaches, digital marketers and software providers about putting our business on “autopilot”. Promises of our business running itself generating major cash while living a freedom lifestyle. This may show up as messages around using this ONE … “framework” or “roadmap” or sales funnel” or “swipe file”. All promising the easy pathway to success and putting our marketing on autopilot.
I have purchased plenty of $27 PDFs (aka low ticket offers) and some have worked well for me and my business while some have felt very unaligned and useless. The same goes for courses I’ve bought and still haven’t done …
What I often find is many of these offers, although they promise to work for all types of service businesses, don’t always account for the uniqueness of your message, time, offering or your style of communicating.
Building a brand and a business isn’t a one size fits all approach
All the messages seem to reinforce that to build a business, we have to learn how to become a digital marketing masters on top of figuring out how to run a business with consistency. Let alone actually providing the service to our clients. It can be overwhelming to find that balance of ease versus effort all the while trying to communicate a message that genuinely reaches and connects to future ideal clients.
I see so many clients who also start on the DIY path later begin to feel frustrated, overwhelmed and lost in it all, especially when doing it all on their own….
What does “autopilot” even look like for our particular business?
The words that begin with “auto” had me look deeper at what this means as a solo entrepreneur and as a brand marketing consultant.
Auto when combined with other words brings on a new meaning of “self,” “same,” “spontaneous”.
How does “self, same and spontaneous” show up in the world of solopreneurship?
I see this show up as autonomy, automate, and automatic.
Let’s define these concepts further and investigate how these may be showing up as challenges in your business and areas of opportunity on where to focus moving forward.
Although we are solopreneurs, this doesn’t have to be a solo endeavor.
Being your own boss comes with many perks… especially when it comes to working when and where you want. However, for many folks the transition from bigger companies and working on teams to being a one-person show can be lonely or feel isolating at times. We end up wearing a lot of hats, trying to DIY everything (especially marketing and sales), while navigating new lessons and lifestyles.
Opportunity: Seek out communities and groups to find folks in similar fields, business phases and areas for learning. These groups and communities can lead to powerful learning, resources, networking opportunities as well as create lasting connections. There may be opportunity to learn what automation workflows, software platforms and marketing tactics have worked for their businesses. Even if there is a fee associated to join, this may be a valuable investment area for your sake and the provider of the community space.
Although there’s a software solution for everything, as service providers more often than not we are humans working with humans.
Many processes start off manual because there’s a lot to figure out in terms of the business. It may be tempting to automate things early on before you know the workflow or scale. This can lead to overspending or end up with different free versions of software with different customer databases. It may also be tempting to not want to invest in software and yet pay for it in significant time inefficiencies or a frustrated client experience.
Opportunity: Evaluate the areas where time can be a significant savings and create more ease for you, your audience, leads and ongoing clients. If you have different software, check if and how it’s being used or if it’s causing more problems. If you have time pain points, look at where software can help streamline processes. If the idea of learning and setting up new software is daunting, look for an online business manager to help recommend and set you up.
Although it may work for others, it may not work for you.
Following proven formulas, processes, roadmaps, algorithm trends and templates can be helpful guides, but may not automatically generate results or work for you. It’s easy to get caught up in reading testimonials, sales and education webinars, and social media swipe files thinking this is the golden ticket. It can be more frustrating when we do invest and the solution causes more problems for us or wasn’t the solution we needed after all.
Opportunity: If you find yourself frustrated with having tried implementing different sales and marketing tactics and it’s not working for you, it may help to audit your routine, processes, marketing channels and audience targets. Leave room for spontaneity to try new things and iterate. Use your own voice in marketing and find your own unique style for communicating. Most importantly, look at what type of content you really enjoy creating (writing, videos, or audio) in order to communicate your message with greater ease.