When you are starting a venture, and you don’t know what people will buy, it is a great strategy to say, “Yes,” to everything. I consider this part of research and development. The cost is that you get spread out and may have to work on projects that extend your energy or cost you in money.
However, after some point, you have enough information on what sells and what is burdensome. You can also see what you are efficient at, thus more profitable towards.
When you have enough experiences, it is your opportunity. You can go bigger on what is working and narrow your focus. If you continue spreading yourself out and allowing every project to be a custom endeavor, you can wear yourself out, never become great at any one thing and fritter away your profits and energy.
If this is you, take a step back. Look at what the world is telling you it wants and what you like. See if you can transition from being everything to everyone and standardize one service by productizing.
Here’s how you productize a service:
- Identify the best service to sell. This is a combination of what you like, what people want and is valuable in the market. Pick a service that makes an impact.
- Write out how you deliver the service. This is a list of the steps you undertake when someone wants to engage. Go over it to refine the steps to be minimal and clear. What happens when someone orders the service first? Design the delivery and the customer experience each step of the way.
- Name it. Use a concrete and results focused name on the service. “90-Day Performance Improvement Coaching” or “Supply Chain Efficiency Analysis” make it clear what you are delivering.
- Price it. Assign a price that makes it easy to say, “Yes,” for your prospects and provides a rewarding profit.
- Target it. Write out the offering on a sales page to a specific audience. Talk about their problem and how you solve the problem with this productized service. Describe your process to show why your deliverable meets the requirement for solving their problem. Share why they can’t live without it.
- Sell it. Go where the buyers are – user groups, LinkedIn filtering, targeted ads, networking venues, etc. Share the problem and the solution you designed. Hone the message so they pay attention.
Productizing a key service helps you scale because you can get more efficient with each rep. You can standardize on the tools you use, the types of people on your team and the way your customer experience should work.
And you get rewarded for refining and improving each step of the process. You experience less headache and more profit over time.
If you are spread out doing all kinds of custom work, what one service could you productize?