I vowed that I would get my stuff together with my businesses and I’ve been plotting and working on since some new things I want to try for about six months now. The main thing I’ve been working to correct about my own business is getting rid of some of the bad habits that have led to me not making the money I should be making (if any at all).
The list I’ve come up with below describes some of the habits we can let ourselves pick up at the expense of our wallets. I know being in business isn’t all about the money, but money is a huge factor. It’s how we provide for ourselves and our families, pay off debts, how we can remain in business and treat ourselves if we want (or need) to.
These habits are some that I’ve unfortunately struggled with but they also are things I’ve experienced on the receiving end as a customer. Let’s go through seven habits that we need to break today.
1. Not having a sales funnel.
A sales funnel is a marketing system that takes a person from being a prospect to a customer or client and then a repeat buyer. This is something I just started learning about last year but has been beneficial during the times that I actually had it set up correctly. You’ll see online businesses use this a lot but truthfully you can make it fit no matter what type of business you own or where/how you operate it. To build a sales funnel you’ll need a website and an email provider like MailChimp, Convert Kit or Constant Contact.
2. Being afraid to promote yourself.
It’s counterproductive not to promote yourself. I know that it takes a certain amount of bravery, vulnerability and skill but you have to overcome it if you ever want to see your full potential. Ads are great but word of mouth and good PR will take you far as well. I used to be afraid to promote myself because I didn’t want to look like everyone else on Instagram but I had to get over it. Why? Because my customers, collaborators and potential clients are on Instagram and they could need my services at any time. Don’t leave money on the table because you’re afraid.
3. Not making sure you receive your payment first.
Speaking of money, I don’t even want to tally up the number of times I started working on a project or blocked out time on my schedule before I got paid only to find out the money was never going to come. Talk about being angry! It is in your best interest to have your potential client or customer pay upfront. Remember, you’re not obligated until they pay (they aren’t even a client until they pay) so you’re protecting yourself as and when you wait – especially if it requires an extensive amount of time, will cause you to miss out on other work or requires you to purchase supplies or hire other people to get the job done. You can do this by collecting partial and/or non-refundable deposits, booking fees or having the full payment due up front.
4. Not continuing your education.
No matter what industry you operate in, there is always something new to learn. Whether its something job specific or a task that’ll help you put your brand in front of more faces – learn it. Failing to continue your education will keep you dependent on others and positions your brand as out of touch. Both of those things will keep the dollars flowing to someone else.
5. Practicing poor customer service.
How many times have you been a repeat customer of a business that didn’t treat you respectfully or with care? Our customers and clients are the lifeblood of our businesses. Without them, to a certain extent, we wouldn’t be able to live our dreams. They deserve to be treated with respect and like their business is appreciated.
6. Not checking your email.
You probably have thousands of dollars just sitting in your email. Failing to check your email leaves a lot of money out of your pockets because if someone can’t get a response from you, they aren’t going to wait very long. They’ll move right on to one of your competitors.
7. Not having a plan in place.
I know you’ve heard the saying, “failure to plan is planning to fail” and it’s true. When you aren’t planning for your future whether it’s the next product, event or any other task related to running a successful business, you are leaving everything up to chance. Sometimes we get lucky but rarely do things fall into place without some type of planning happening.
So far I’m doing really good with breaking these habits and I want to encourage you to give it a try if you’re struggling with any of these. Are there any that you’d like to add? Share them in the comment section below!