Update On My Life

I want to update you on what has been happening since you last heard from me.  I have been busy with new things brewing.

First, thank you for sticking with me.  You have no idea how much it means to have you there.  Second, I love what I do – helping people like yourself build a strong brand so you can be heard and attract your ideal target audience.

Teresa Pangan Branding and Social Media ConsultantThis last year I have been able to work with amazing people and help them in all different aspects of their businesses: writing compelling content copy, launching websites, digging to find authentic brands that resonate in the marketplace and getting noticed by their target audience.

Where I am Going

I made the decision in the last quarter of 2012 that I wanted to expand my business and grow it bigger  in the future.  I worked with business consultants and did a lot of research to find where I would fit best as a business.

What kept coming up was social media.  So many of my clients after they have clarity on their business niche, target market and brand they want help in unleashing it in social media.  I also have observed over the last years so many businesses in social media are getting little to no results.  I really hate seeing business’ valuable time spent in the wrong places and doing the wrong activities.

How I am Getting There

I now am knee deep in studying social media to not only find out what works but the tools and habits that the experts employ and teach so time invested is kept to a minimum.  I am honored to be part of a group founded by Mari Smith (named by Forbes as one of the top ten influencers in social media) that helps passionate business owners setup their business with a solid foundation they can grow to any size they want in the future (called the Business & Beyond Group).  I will even get to meet her in person at a retreat in April this year.  Super excited!

And in this group there is a lot of focus on social media both being on the cutting edge of what works but also focus on the importance of habits setup to 100% bring in clients in social media.  Our first book reading assignment was The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy, founding editor and publisher of Success magazine.  I highly recommend it. The main message of the book is successful people are made by the habits they stick with even when it seems like they are making little difference.  Sort of like the tortoise and the hare – the tortoise wins because he never gives up and does not get distracted.

What This Has Meant for My Life

I have changed my life both personally and professionally a bunch since 2013 began.  I now am getting up at 5:30 every day – yeow.  I know that is early.  But it gives me time to start my day strong and even get in some work before any of my four kids straggles out from their bedrooms.

I also have a wind down routine for the end of the day that all my kids can recite and are helping me keep true to.  What happens in between the start and end of the day is not so set in stone, but I still aim to have some sense of a schedule to it with ability to adapt to opportunities that arise.   I have more energy, am getting a lot more done, and even have time to do some things I had given up on working in – reading for 30 minutes a day and yoga first thing in the morning.

What My New Business Will Look Like

And yes, I am launching a new business in not too long.  It is going to be called Social Media More with Less where the focus will be on helping people like yourself with their online business.  I want to help make every minute count online so you can do more of what you love – the work where you get to use your super powers and help others.

I am not closing down Teresa Pangan Brand Consulting and already have some help to help with the new business.  I am opening up new doors so I can serve others using the gifts I was blessed with.  Thanks for being here with me on my journey.

Bring in More $$ by Marketing to Fewer People

Yes, you read the title correct.  You can actually make MORE money by marketing to fewer people.  This is the premise behind narrowing your focus or niching.

Humans want specific solutions.  To help a headache they want headache medicine and not general pain medicine.Pain Medicine

Think about pain medication. Huge market. If you have a headache, are you going to buy the general pain medicine or the pain medicine specifically for headaches?  The outside package for both OTCs is different, one niches and the other is a generalist trying to cover a broad market, and the actual products are identical.

Research shows marketing as a headache medicine produces tons more sales.

Humans like to be specific. We like to buy things that address our specific needs, not general “fix everything” type of approaches.

Just like fitness and exercise can be narrowed to fitness and exercise for women. You can narrow this further to fitness and exercise for women over the age of forty, and now you have a product that is “Fit Over Forty“.  You will have more sales, thus more profit with this narrow focus than just marketing as a fitness and exercise expert.

Niche Work

There are several ways to define a niche. But your first step needs to come from within. Who do you want to spend your time working with? What kinds of people do you enjoy helping? What kinds of people do you care deeply about and want to help grow and prosper?

Remember, you’ll be building your business around your niche, so you don’t want to build it around a niche you don’t like. These next four questions to ask are key for assuring your niche is profitable – you can make a living.

1. Does your niche group have a strong emotionally compelling problem or issue that you can help with?
2. Is your niche group looking for a solution to their problem – seeking help?  It is much tougher to market a service or product for a problem the target market does not even know they need.
3. Will the help you provide either make your niche group feel much better or solve a big problem for them?  I like to say you want your help to give them better sleep at night.
4. Lastly, is the niche group willing to pay for the benefits they will receive because they see the value to their life, business and/or happiness? What you are digging at here is whether the niche group ranks the solution to their problem high enough to pay for help.

These questions are aiming to prevent you from setting up your business around a need a market is not seeking a solution for nor is willing to pay for  These are tough challenges to overcome even with an outstanding brand and clever marketing campaign.

What this means is it is going to be super challenging to find a product or service to offer for the niche group women 30 – 40 years old that are successful, happy, have little stress and are practicing preventative care that they will pay for.

First, she doesn’t have an  emotionally compelling problem. She feels good now. Second, there is no big difficulty to solve in order for her to feel the immediate benefits, even if she might feel a sense of peace knowing she was preventing problems.

Lastly, she might pay for this kind of preventative help as long as she had the extra money because she knows it is a good idea. However, it will likely be a lower priority which will take more effort on your part to prompt her to action.

Tweak to a Profitable Niche

With a little tweaking you could niche successfully to 30-40 year old women who get chronic debilitating headaches. The headaches zap her energy, wear her out, she is unable to be in a good mood around her children, she feels grumpy and isn’t enjoying life. She now has an emotionally compelling problem you can help with.

Increase your sales and profit by narrowing your focus

She wants to feel good, have the pain go away and have more energy and focus for her kids.

She is definitely willing to pay for this because she wants relief and feels desperate. Your help will change her life for the better.

Now you have a niche that allows you to work with your ideal client and make a living from helping them.

 

 

How a Niche Expands Your Reach

The hardest part of niching for business owners to understand is that by narrowing and solving your problem for your target market – over the top happy clients, you will begin to expand your reach outside of your narrow niche without having to market that broad.

So lets say you have seen 10 ideal clients and resolved their headaches and brought peace back into their life through a meditation focus.  Now, your estatic clients will bring in their husband or their kids or their mom or friend because she knows you, likes you and feels a connection with you.  Her enthusiastic recommendation for you attracts others to go to you for their problems, even non-headache problems.

Now your niche business is growing, even outside your niche. The key is to stay focused on your niche as the ‘headache healer.’  This narrow niching brings in more business in the long term.  With this niche you solve an emotionally compelling problem for a narrow group of people that are willing to pay to gain the positive result you will bring.

Your approach (meditation focus in this example) while solving the problem and your achievement of the desired result can broaden your reach beyond your niche without having to market more.

Entrepreneurs that go too broad (are generalists) struggle with their marketing as they feel they need to include 5 or more different problems they solve in each of their marketing pieces.  The trouble with this is none of their marketing pieces compel their ideal target market to act, to buy – in branding we say this is a weak marketing piece.

To build a successful business, you must find a way to compel people to buy.   Lack of a narrow focus is a top reason businesses struggle to inspire their market to act, to buy.

Maslow’s Hierarchy Sheds Light on Branding Emotions

Remember Maslow from psychology  or business class?  He first introduced his concept of a hierarchy of needs in his 1943 paper “A Theory of Human Motivation” and his subsequent book, Motivation and Personality. This hierarchy suggests that people are motivated to fulfill basic needs before moving on to other needs.

Maslows Hierarchy and Brand EmotionsMaslow’s pyramid is a branding tool because of the emotional needs it fulfills for individuals.  The top three layers of Maslow’s pyramid go beyond basic needs into the desire to feel something, be someone or get somewhere.  These are emotional desires.   Branding messages can tie in highly motivating emotions to a product or service when linked to one of these higher desires.

Consider the need to connect with others. Humans have an innate need to be part of something, to have ongoing dialogue and communication.  Does your product fulfill this need to belong?  Or feel loved?  Or enrich relationships?  Or feel accepted?

What about esteem needs?  People want to feel important, have respect,  feel special?   Can you bring this out in your product or service?

Lastly, how can your product or service help people to self-actualize and develop themselves?  Does it help them make a difference in others?  The world?  Leave a legacy?  How can you express this in an emotional way?

Say your services are diabetes management classes.  You can bring in Maslow’s emotional desires by communicating past participants are confident in managing their diabetes in real life situations and are prepared for any and all situations.   Here the emotional need is confidence.

Another example might be you are a nonprofit program consultant.  You could communicate that by using your services their nonprofit organization can impact many more lives through increased donations and cost savings in more efficient program management.  This one taps into the self-actualization emotion.

Talk to your customers and clients and try out several messages that communicate different emotional desires and take note of those that elicit the strongest positive reaction.  Share below any example messages with emotion you come up with.