Growing your business is both an art and a science. It requires both creativity and a systematic approach. When you are in the beginning stages of your business, flying solo or with one or two assistants, it’s easy to ignore the importance of having processes in your business. Information is stored in your head. You intuitively know what you need to do to operate and grow your business.
But if you want your business to grow into a multiple six, seven, or eight-figure business, you must have solid processes defined and documented. A mature business has numerous processes, often for every business activity that takes place in the organization. As a small business owner, the thought of documenting every process can be daunting. So I recommend seven solid business processes you must have in place to support your business growth.
If you start with these processes, you are light years ahead of the average small business owner:
90-Day Goal Setting
Business growth starts with a vision and a plan. From these two things, aligned goals can be set. When I am working with clients, every 90 days we are revisiting their business. We are measuring freedom, impact, and income and looking at how we want the next 90 days to look. I have a very specific process we follow to evaluate the business. It starts with a questionnaire and ends with a written 90-day plan that we follow over the next three months.
Your business needs this too. You need a process for measuring your business and how closely it correlates to the overall vision and mission you have. Business changes fast. Sometimes we have to pivot and make adjustments on our journey. Setting new goals every 90 days allows you to stay connected to your values, your direction, and changing market conditions.
Without clients, your business does not grow. It just becomes an expensive hobby. And few people want that. Your client acquisition process is different, depending on whether you are using online or offline activities to gain clients.
If your business is primarily online, your client acquisition process begins with your funnel. What is the entry point in which new people are introduced to your business and your offers? Do you have a lead magnet in place that you encourage people to opt in to? What happens next? If they download your lead magnet, and that’s the end, your process needs to be refined. Think about the online journey you want to take new prospects through to become a client.
Offline client acquisition processes look different. They could include a referral process, a networking process, or a business development and sales process. Your offline client acquisition process also includes the experience that prospects go through once they have direct interaction with you. If they schedule a 30-minute consultation with you, how are you wowing prospects with your information gathering and follow-up process?
Every business must have a content marketing plan. There needs to be a way for prospects to get to know you and your expertise. Content comes in so many different forms and the type of content you use really depends on your preference. The most popular content in today’s market is…
- Social Media Posts
- Case Studies
- Lead Magnets
- Workshops / Speaking Engagements
- Website Content
Pick your poison. What type of content do you prefer to share? What form do you excel at? Although there is no right or wrong answer, do keep in mind the content trends and how specifically your ideal client prefers to consume content.
Define your process for regularly getting your content in front of your audience. Will you host a weekly podcast? Write a bi-monthly blog? Post to your social media accounts three times per week? Generate a content calendar that clearly outlines your content marketing process.
Your social media process is a fraction of your overall content marketing process and I am a firm believer every business needs a social media process. Love it or hate it. Social media is here to stay. Even if you do not actively get clients from your social media, I can guarantee prospects are checking your social media accounts to get an idea of who you are and judging your expertise.
When thinking about your social media process, decide which platform(s) are best for reaching your ideal clients. Develop a strategy that includes content that attracts, nurtures, generates interest, and inspires action. Your social media process can also include paid advertising efforts – when you will use it and when you won’t. What hot trends can you effectively and authentically incorporate into your business growth strategy? Whatever you decide for your process, work it consistently for a minimum of 90-180 days before changing course.
New Client Onboarding
Of course, you are going to get new clients. You wooed them into becoming a client but the wooing shouldn’t stop. Now is the time to knock their socks off with a rock-solid new client onboarding process. I have designed and written many new client onboarding processes and when done right, they make the onboarding process smooth and professional.
Without a process, it can feel disjointed to a client. This leads to confusion, hesitation, unanswered questions, and ultimately could cost you a new client. Just because your new client initially committed doesn’t mean they won’t back out. Your new client onboarding process needs to breathe professionalism, excellence, and warmth. Welcome to our family!
New Team Member Onboarding
Yes, if your business is growing, you will continually add new team members. Team members are just as integral to your business as clients. Without them, you cannot run a successful business.
Recently, I was hired as a launch coach for a leading course creation company. You can bet I am eagerly waiting for my onboarding process. Already, I am wondering if I will receive training. I want to know who else I am working with. I’m curious about how I will be interacting (or not) with the owner. Of course, there is a legal process you need to go through with new team members, but your onboarding process is so much more. Refine this process and make sure to give your new team members everything they need to be a huge success for your company.
Financial and Numbers
There are two camps when it comes to numbers and metrics. Some business owners love the numbers side of business, while others cringe and rather not deal with it. Wherever you fall, just know that you can’t run or grow a successful business without numbers. So if you hate them, find someone for your team that loves them!
Your financial and numbers process includes both your business financials but also your KPIs (key performance indicators) that you are using to measure your success. Every business owner likes to track different metrics and while there are certainly common KPIs, certain numbers are specific to you and what’s important to you in your business.
To make it simple, pick 5-10 specific metrics you want to track and decide how often you will track these numbers. Don’t overcomplicate things for yourself. And don’t pick so many KPIs to track that you get overwhelmed and abandon metrics tracking altogether. Here are some common numbers I track in my business:
- Number of email subscribers
- Open rate on email campaigns
- Social media followers
- Social media engagement rate
- Number of opt-ins to my lead magnets
- Number of clients
Although these are certainly common metrics, there are others you may want to explore for your business. Regardless of what you choose to track, make sure you have a financial and numbers process in place.
Processes are an integral part of your business growth strategy. The more solid processes you have in place, the smoother your business will run. And ultimately, they will set you up for massive scaling.
Need a business growth strategist in your corner? Feel free to contact me for a free 30-minute consultation. I can support your marketing and operation efforts as you scale to multiple 6-figures and beyond.
7 Processes You Must Have to Support Your Business Growth
September 13, 2021