As I spoke with one of my coaching clients, I flat out asked her something that very few people would ever do.
“Are you going to ruin 2013 too?”
2012 had been a difficult year for this client. She charted the last five years of her business. Up, up, up, down, WAAYYYY down. In fact she was so far down, she wondered what 2013 would bring.
“Should I quit and get a job?”
“Is there even a hope for photographers anymore?”
In short, she was having a pity party.
So we started talking about the obstacles in her way. I grabbed a pen and paper and asked her to tell me about all the marketing methods she tried in 2012. What specials did you run? Where did you advertise? How many connections did you make with your previous customer base?
And she sat there with very little to say. “Ummmm…”
And pretty soon you could hear her crashing into her “a-ha” moment. She saw the light and began to see where she went wrong.
Five years ago things were doing well. She was making a lot and enjoying her business and her life. She marketed her business in a variety of ways.
Three years ago, things were still doing well. She went on a few vacations and stopped a couple of her marketing methods. She closed down one of her “specials” because she was out of the country. Things began to fall.
Two years ago, she dropped a few more marketing methods and specials.
Then with her lack of funds, she dropped out of a few more last year. Life happens. Things change. And she didn’t change with it. She let life happen to her.
Now everything was crashing in around her. The past three months have been “sweat time” – maybe you’ve experienced it too – the feeling of sweating it out hoping a large enough order comes in by the end of the month in order for you to pay your bills.
I stopped her in her tracks and started turning her focus to 2013 and all of its potential.
“When was the last time you spoke to your best clients?”
“Back in October, I found out one of my best clients was pregnant again and her baby was due the first of the year. But I heard this from a friend of a friend. I’ve done her first two kids, so I was hoping she’d call me for this one too.”
And there was her first problem.
Instead of calling and touching base with this client – a great client from the past – she put the potential on the client.
She put her sales strategy on a busy mother-to-be of three!
“Nope, not going to work,” I said. “You’re not going to ruin her 2013. Instead, you’re going to connect with her today and make sure she hasn’t missed the greatest opportunity of her life. She has newborn portraits of her first and second child, imagine how she will feel the rest of her life if she misses out on this once-in-a-lifetime experience with baby number three.”
And we created a plan. A phone call. A card. A visit. A gift. We brainstormed all kinds of ways she could connect on a personal level with this very important client.
And once we got the ball rolling, the ideas started flying.
We quickly had a plan for all of her other clients she’d “lost” in the previous year.
We created several new promotions to take place in the first half of 2013.
We jumpstarted her 2013 marketing plan so much, she spent the next 24 hours busy at it, connecting in ways she hadn’t done in months.
And it worked.
In less than a week, she had great ideas and a new zest for her business.
What about you?
Are you going to ruin your 2013?
Or are you going to do something about it.
Choice is yours. You can do it. But it’s all up to you.
Have questions of your own? Ready for one-to-one advice that can put you back on track for 2013? You may be ready for my personal coaching sessions. With one-to-one coaching, its all about you. You decide where you need help. Together we put you back on track to improve your chances of success in 2013 … and beyond.