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Hi, I’m Cate Richards – I help purpose led business starters (like you) find their way into a crowded market and get their “ducks in a row”. They launch with confidence and their offers hit the mark.
My specialty is strategy – skillfully guiding you through the maze of decisions and getting you set up for success. As a newish entrepreneur, you’ll literally be bombarded with tactics and advice. Start simple, with an understanding of your strengths and skills plus a clear, well defined strategy. Without this anchor you’ll drown in overwhelm.
I draw on 20 years experience as a business strategist for the big end of town PLUS another 10 years in the entrepreneurial salt mines. I built a big business that didn’t make me happy, so I left it in capable hands and am building this one straight from my heart.
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YOU DON’T HAVE have an ideal client description, a smooth introduction statement and your core messaging (either brand positioning or specialisation) is NOT sorted.
This is the number one clarity / strategy problem I work on with my private clients.
It’s incredibly difficult to move into action if you don’t feel confident about this piece. Putting yourself on solid ground will make you SO MUCH more confident and graceful
I liken strategic development to a staircase where you take the first 6 steps to a landing and once you reach that landing you never have to revisit those bottom steps again, it is all upside.
I’m going to recommend 2 approaches; 1 is a free resources and one is an online class
The first is finding your “Sweet Spot” – this is my signature content and will help you find your place in this entrepreneurial world.
You can get this done in a quiet afternoon, with the help of the PDF workbook.
You are building a bespoke business, that will amplify your existing skills, knowledge and passion, so before you define your positioning I really encourage you to do this work.
I call it self awareness clarity – like self help but for your business.
If you get in a muddle (and don’t feel bad, many people do) I offer Sweet Spot Live private sessions to help you explore and distill your thinking. (Right now I have those at a great price too). You’ll get more information about that with the download.
The second resource is for people who are clear on their sweet spot but haven’t yet been able to EXPRESS it. Often it is because what you do is quite hard to explain. Would you like to accelerate yourself out of confusion with my personal help? I can help you nail your positioning.
Your positioning is your anchor in a crowded market. It is the shorthand that will help you get referred because your services will be a “match” in the minds of your peers.
Every 4th Tuesday I run a live online program called “On Point Positioning” (live as in, I’m there to run you through the content and answer questions.
In this 2 hour program I’ll walk you through a streamlined process that takes you out of the maze and into clarity.
I run these session every 4th Tuesday at a cost of $35 ….. check out this page here to jump into the next one
(or check out my consulting page if you’d like to work together sooner)
I will ask you to complete your Sweet Spot part as homework so you come prepared and ready to get this critical piece nailed, so please grab that workbook above.
Your “big why” and direction is NOT clear. You don’t feel motivated and inspired or are unhappy in your business.
Only a handful of the people I’ve met in this field are motivated by promises of wealth and “tick box” achievements. (Most of those people sensibly stay in comfortable corporate jobs). It’s nearly always about wanting a more meaningful, rewarding life.
Your “big why” could be personal – to enjoy freedom and fully express your creativity. Is business is your art? (It is certainly mine).
For many of you I suspect there is another layer again. A deeper impulse is propelling you forward, and you have a deep desire to use your privilege and gifts to meaningfully contribute to the lives of others.
Most of you would be familiar with the “golden circle” popularized by Simon Sinek; People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.
To take on something as demanding as entrepreneurship you need plenty of motivation, if you don’t you’ll quit. If you feel aligned to a purpose you can face the day to day challenges of being in business.
I call this finding your “North Star”.
For most people it’s a quiet, deep, reflective process – but it’s not necessarily a long drawn out affair. Don’t be thinking this is a rabbit hole, it really doesn’t have to be. It can be some of the beautiful work you ever do.
I have a post about finding clarity here, which many people have told me they loved. I also wrote a post here about being unhappy in your business. This is an area I have personal experience in, and many people who work with me personally on their sweet spot have a business, but don’t find it fulfilling.
I recommend either talking this through with a trusted adviser or journalling questions to get you started.
These are the “big why” questions that help my clients
- What are you deeply inspired to help others find, achieve or know?
- What do you want to protect others from?
- If you could transplant some of your knowledge, awareness or experience into the minds and hearts of others, what would that be?
- What are the best and highest compliments that you’ve been given? The ones you absolutely treasure….
- What amazing ripple effects could result if you were supporting people to change their lives by sharing what you’ve learned or experienced?
- What would you most like to secretly overhear a client saying about you to a prospect?
- On your bad days, what sustains you? What keeps you motivated? What is the big vision?
Your “North Star” can take many forms and have many vehicles. For example I visualize creating beautiful space for people to rest and rejuvenate, fall back in love with business and leave inspired and empowered.
It may also help you to complete our “Sweet Spot” process, as I think that is the best way to come into alignment between your business and personal goals.
You know that people can get results following your guidance
Feedback is your best friend, at this stage in your journey do whatever it takes to get specific responses about your products, services and program. The more people who will evaluate your products or programs the better.
How to go about this.
Offer beta testing / barter in return for testimonials and feedback to people who are ideal prospects.
They should be:
- people you know (not “randoms”)
- people who would have paid if you hadn’t offered this (ie genuine prospective clients)
- who will give you a fair appraisal
- who will provide a testimonial
I have done this and found it very helpful, but what it didn’t help with was SELLING the program – people took me up on my offer because it was helpful to them and they wanted to support me. The part I missed was – they didn’t BUY it (and probably wouldn’t have bought it)
Once you have a bit of confidence, start charging what you can. People tend to value what they pay for, so I advise clients to have a paid introductory product and give enormous value.
There are some good ways to discount strategically – for eg “This program is usually $X, but for the first 3 takers it is $Y”. Or you can create a low introductory rate for a first session and pitch extra sessions or a program that addresses the issues raised at the end of that.
(I do the latter with my “get unstuck” offer that introduces people to my 1-1 consulting).
I am in a couple of memberships at low rates because the founders identified me as someone who would be an active contributor, provide a testimonial and give them feedback. I do pay, it isn’t free.
Take thoughtful feedback and tweak and tweak.
My big business is a productised service business, we run team building events. I have built that business to 7 figures just with a philosophy of continuous improvement, getting better at everything we do.
For each event that was run the first time, I would take all the observations and feedback and improve on 50% of it, the second time I would improve 25% of it, after that generally only small tweaks were required.
You jump in readily and answer questions from people in your area of expertise and are thanked for your insight.
I once used an answer I gave about naming brands as the basis of a product.
Take note of the common questions you get asked because that is the best starting point for your content.
The first step is to find some great facebook groups or paid forums where your ideal clients hang out (the kind of clients who might pay you one day, not an enormous bunch of wannabes) and show yourself.
Answer questions and provide a lot of value, it might be a slow burn but it gets noticed.
You can spot the problems you solve “in the wild”. In a conversation with prospects, you could smoothly introduce your work.
The way I teach is no fluff and “roll up sleeves”. I like to generate a bunch of option and then narrow down. I provide loads (and loads) of examples plus plug and play templates.
Pitch Perfect had great feedback – most participants said it increased their confidence and conversion rates.
I’m addressing these 2 together
Your content has a shape or a structure, and even if you don’t have products YET, you have an idea of what you’re going to offer. & You can speak authoritatively, without notes on your area of specialisation.
Once you get into a content creation habit, you will be floored by how much you know already that can help others. The process of creating content and seeking out questions to answer will also show up any areas where extra research or experimentation is required.
For example one of my popular posts is called 6 ingredients for an awesome about page, and whilst I had a good idea what to include, I also reviewed around 100 about pages and for the ones I felt really drawn to, I broke down the elements that were making them so successful.
So the keys are: Brainstorm a list of content topics using questions you are seeing frequently in groups. Put your own spin on things and start creating a content asset for your business. As long as you don’t overthink and want everything perfect, work on content is never wasted, it can be used in so many ways.
It doesn’t have to be written content, as long a you start by mapping it out, you can break it into bite size pieces.
There are also VA’s who specialise in this – taking a piece of content and repurposing it into social, videos and audios. Working with someone like that lets you see the possibilities.
RESOURCE: Here is a great post on content creation to get you started, just choose one from my friend Caroline McCullough’s list and get started. Caroline (who I call Cas) created the Writally app which creates blog post recipes so she knows her stuff.