If you’re struggling with your attempts to grow and scale beyond six-figures, it’s entirely possible that the culprit lies at the very foundation of your business—within your ideal client.
How many times in your business’ evolution have you filled out an ideal client profile? I’m willing to bet you don’t have nearly enough fingers to count. Even though every single successful entrepreneur I meet would rather stick a pin under her thumbnail than complete another damn ideal client profile, almost every single entrepreneur I meet is still talking to too many damn people.
The crux of the issue here is that most entrepreneurs reach six-figures by working with a wide array of clients. In order to continue scaling to multiple six (and then seven) figures, logic follows that the goal is to continue expanding, reaching more people.
The reality is actually quite the opposite: in order to effectively grow and scale, you are going to have to contract and focus in. Get incredibly clear on who it is, exactly, that is the most ideal client you can serve.
I realize this sounds counterintuitive, but stick with me if you’re interested in increasing your revenue:
There can only be one ideal client.
Let’s take a baking instructor, Betty, as an example. Betty has built herself a successful six-figure business as an online baking instructor. The business was born from a joy and passion for baking that Betty’s brick-and-mortar bakery could no longer fulfill (the hours and overhead were starting to kill her). Through her online programs, Betty drew in tons of different kinds of clients—kids, moms, dads, hobby bakers—she even began to attract professional chefs. It’s now a couple years in, and her online programs are popping, she has a library full of baking videos, and she is one in demand baker.
In order to scale her baking business beyond six-figures, Betty’s coach helps her realize she wants to focus solely on the professional chefs. They have the money and drive to invest in furthering their training (Betty’s noticed the chefs are exclusively buying her more advanced trainings), and she enjoys answering their questions and creating content for them the most.
Betty’s ONE ideal client, then, is professional chefs who’ve never gone to pastry school (and know absolutely nothing about baking) but have decided to broaden their horizons and fuse their knowledge of bacon and other savory delights with Betty’s IP around baking and sugary confections.
Suddenly, Betty is the go-to expert for baking-curious chefs, and she has her first seven-figure year. Three times a year, Betty holds private baking retreats in the most exclusive kitchens around the world. Throughout the remainder of the year, she has recurring revenue streaming in from the product she has systematized and created from her existing intellectual property. This allows chefs who don’t want to commit to her retreats (or who have already gone through her retreats and just want a little more sauce—pun absolutely intended) to go through her baking trainings online.
By zeroing in on one ideal-client, Betty has simplified her business model significantly and scaled it, too.
Here are the necessary steps to uncover who your one ideal client is:
>>Do a content audit of everything you’ve offered in your business. Fully understand the width and breadth of your intellectual property.
>>Make a list of the types of clients you have worked with in the past and any client types you are considering working with.
Under each client type, determine if there is:
- Passion: Do you feel hella excited about working with this client?
- Profit: Is there a viable profit stream here?
- Results: Can you successfully provide the necessary plan, tools, and help for this ideal client to reach the transformation you’re promising?
>>And it absolutely cannot hurt to go through your ideal client profile again—I know, not what you wanted to hear. But my job isn’t to let you off the hook.
Don’t be afraid to be incredibly specific. Knowing your ideal client intimately is what your revenue is relying on.
Talk to too many people, and you’re just another voice in an already crowded room. Get really clear about who you’re talking to, and then it’s as though you’ve walked up to them, tapped them on the shoulder, and said: “Hey there, you. I see you, and I can actually help you.”
When we fear getting incredibly clear about our one ideal client, we’re actually admitting to a fear of saying “no”. Saying no to working with all people leaves money on the table, right?
Every time you say no to a client that isn’t actually ideal, you say YES to more ideal clients. With each no, you’ll step further away from toxic, needy, and unaligned shadow clients and towards clients who will happily trade their money for your intellectual property—which ends up being a better situation for all involved.
This leads to more results for your clients, which yields positive testimonials and referrals, and, at the same time, you will inevitably experience more ease with your revenue.
So, who is your one ideal client?