We all have experienced events in our lives that bring old fears back to the front of your mind. An experience. A memory. Maybe just a situation.
Recently, my wife delivered a brand new baby boy to my household, and I spent a little time reflecting.
On top of being really excited, there was some fear that crept into my thoughts. I had to take a minute and laugh at it.
Simply because, I see fear and failure as a good thing.
Feeling fear means that you’re taking some risk. No successful anything was built without taking some risk.
Whenever you face change, a little fear always comes up. I welcome that, and you should too!
When I’m looking for business growth, or I’m helping a client’s business the only constant is change.
I get it…
Everyone wants to hit the easy button and have a magical stream of clients and customers that are waiting for your service.
But, building a business is hard. It’s not a formula that can be boiled down to A + B = C.
It’s part art. Part science.
And, all of it must be fit to your business. If any part of this is wrong, you will drive your potential customers away.
Sure, there are processes, systems, and even frameworks that can help. But, if this worked for every business, then 85% of small businesses wouldn’t fail.
Your business is unique.
It’s a reflection of you, your personality, and the service that you provide.
It also has to deal with people. Your customers are hit with thousands of messages a day. So, they develop very fine-tuned B.S. detectors.
In order to overcome all of this noise, you must be willing to fail. The good news is that it used to be very expensive to fail, and companies could lose everything in one shot.
Today, you can use “failures” as a growth tactic.
You can use it as a way to speed up your business growth!
Imagine the ability fail fast, without a lot of risk, and to grow your business at the same time.
Let’s look at the power of failing fast..
What happens when you run a campaign or a “sale” that exceeds your goal? Do you look at what went “wrong”? Or, do you celebrate and focus on the next opportunity?
It’s simply human nature to look at the good things that are happening, and when they’re good you don’t worry about the bad.
Put another way, how often do you ask why you beat your objective?
However, when you lose. Or something goes wrong…
I’m sure that you are digging into why.
Fail fast, fail frequent, and win more.
Building a product or service, launching it, and then hoping it will work is the wrong way to fail. Unfortunately, this is how most businesses actually operate.
Take your idea and break it down into small pieces. The ability to use Facebook and other forms of social media to prove your concept is cheap, fast, and effective.
Focus on the problem (or pain) you’re trying to solve, or even a piece of the problem.
Write articles about a piece of the problem. Are you getting traffic? Are they actually reading it?
Conduct a survey among your audience. Are you getting detailed responses?
Sell a “beta” version. Are people willing to actually buy your product and help it develop?
The business graveyard is full of great ideas that people were not willing to actually buy.
It doesn’t matter what you, your business partner, your consultant or anyone else actually thinks about a product or service.
It can solve a problem that your customers have. It can be a critical need. If your customer isn’t willing to actually buy the product, it is doomed to fail.
One of the phrases I hear very often, “my customers really need this”.
There’s a big difference between what a customer wants, and what they need. You have the benefit of experience and knowing what can help your client.
Break down the path your customer must take (the customer journey). Provide content at each step of the journey for you customer to get what they want.
Solve a specific problem for them at each step. This piece-by-piece approach builds your credibility.
Then, you can work what they really need into your offering and ensure that you’re putting their best interests forward.
The last benefit that you get by embracing the “fail fast” attitude deal with your personal belief.
Many businesses can do a lot more, but they are limited by their personal beliefs.
When you test out your ideas in small pieces. You will go through your ideas more frequently. Simply, you will fail more frequently.
But, you will also have more confidence in the “winners” going forward. This actually creates a situation where you’ll be encouraged to try new ideas.
The “fear” of the unknown is reduced because you don’t have the substantial risk to your business.
By pushing the boundaries on your content and your offerings, you’ll discover new products and services that your customers want. As well as those that they don’t want.
The best part is you get to test and see what your market responds to. You get to listen to your tribe, and they get to know that you’re responding to them.
What an amazing business world we get to operate in today.
Enjoy the journey!