I’m sure you are great at what you do. That is why you were able to command that high salary or project rates. No one can doubt your experience and expertise. However, I’m sure the past few months would have exposed a flaw in your mode of operation. Like many others, you lack a long-game strategy. Are your services agile enough to form affordable products in the face of COVID-19? If not, that is the one key reason you are facing financial extinction in this pandemic. Here is a step-by-step guide of how you can create multiple income streams so you won’t have to stress about such matters in the future.
Sure, everyone knows the full value of what you bring to the table. However, not everyone has the budget to put up for your services. This is especially true considering the looming recession. Businesses will be more cautious about how they spend. They might like you, but they will want to slice up your services and only pay for the most pertinent parts. The first thing you need to do is to map out the services you want to offer. You can do this by listing down all your skills, and grouping them into desirable key outcomes. Instead of selling a Digital Marketing package, break it down into branding services, copywriting, content strategy, lead generation… These are things with clear ROI that businesses will want to buy.
Once you have these individual services, you need to devise creative ways to package your offerings to deliver value at varying price points. Tell your clients clearly what they should expect in terms of time and resources they need to invest for that tier of services they are interested in. More affordable products will require more hands-on work, while premium services will save you time at incremental costs. Don’t make the mistake of selling a DIY product than doing the work for your clients. This is the quickest way to devalue your work and worth.
When mapping out these tiers, consider the energy required against the cost of your product. Basic buy-ins will require low energy from your end, with little investment from your client. Some services include eBooks and worksheets, which caters to self-starters who don’t mind investing time to save money. Same goes for starter courses, which gives users a point-of-entry to learning a new topic. You mustn’t end up developing a full course, as that will require vast amounts of energy. For a starter course, centre your topics on components of your broader curriculum. The great thing about such products is that you need not constantly put out new offerings, as they don’t require any tailoring. It’s a one-time investment of effort.
Once you helped reduce the friction of entering a new topic for your clients, you can upsell your mid-range offerings. These will require moderate time investments, to sell at mid-level pricing. Examples include 1:1 coaching sessions where you guide your clients through your process with your expertise. If 1:1 coaching does not work due to the overwhelming response, you can also consider group coaching. However, make sure that you separate your groups by expertise levels, so that everyone can relate to your coaching as you tailor it to each group. Everyone has different concerns at varying stages of their business or career, after all. This tier of offerings will take the longest to figure out, as you have to weigh your energy against what would be profitable. Coaching is different from doing, and it’s a whole other skill set you might have to pick up. Step back and create a framework for easily explaining your points without overwhelming people with information.
The last tier features highly bespoke services that are going to take all the skills and energy you have. Of course, the returns are extremely rewarding. Clients at this stage will have full trust in you, and it is not a tough sell at all even with the price. You need to worry more about delivering, especially with mid-tier services taking up your time as well. This tier is all about you, and what you do best. Remember to be more selective with the projects you take on, because you do need the balance and work diversification. Without it, your bespoke services are going to dip in quality, and you do not want to stumble when it comes time to deliver.
If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that we cannot rely on a single source of income. It would help if you relooked at how you position your business, and how to carve out different products to create different income streams using your expertise. Being agile is critical.