When is it time to move from business building to branding?
How do you know if it’s more Building you need or more Branding work that is being called for?
At some point each and every entrepreneur and business owner will experience burn out and stagnation. It’s a built in process that nobody tells you about at the start up point. Many of us try to push past it and ignore it until, inevitably, our dissatisfaction gets too loud to be ignored.
If you know you are there, or fast approaching this point, what should you do? Let’s take a look.
- IDENTIFY where you are in your Entrepreneurial journey. (You must know and get honest about where you are now in order to get where you’re going).
STAGES OF THE ENTREPRENEURIAL JOURNEY
There are four stages which I have identified and outlined below that every single entrepreneur and business owner will arrive at and will need to go through at some point. The problem is that most people aren’t able to identify the stages, what the stages mean, and what the stage is calling them to look at. Let’s break this down.
- PLATEAUING (slowing down, burning out, re-strategizing the strategies you did in phase 1 and 2, thinking about a PIVOT or Rebrand
- DEVELOPING (your brand)
For many businesses owners and entrepreneurs stages 1 and 2 can become a “treadmill cycle” that most people never get off of because they keep building and adding more rooms to the original structure (thinking what they are doing is scaling) when in fact they are just laterally expanding without the right foundation, structure, and business model. (Take a look at my post on “scaling” here for that rabbit hole, lol).
Now let’s break down the stages in depth
The BUILDING stage includes basic new business things like a business plan, business model design, getting credentials and certifications, creating a website, social media accounts, product development, sales avenues, logo design, business cards, etc. Every single business owner that I have ever worked with did this first step and did it well! Everyone seems to get this right! Why? Because it’s exciting and there’s lots of momentum. Maybe there an initial cash investment or start up loan/funds and you are riding on adrenaline and a prayer!
**Interesting to note, that rarely do business owners build in a long term business branding strategy during the building stage!
The OPERATIONS stage comes next and also “overlaps” stage 1. This is where you really get into the day to day operations of transacting, selling and interacting with your marketplace. Things like servicing clients, selling products, customer service, accounting, taxes, payroll, delegating, managing a team, maintaining systems and structures and learning to juggle personal and professional obligations all come into play and are necessary.
NOW HERE COMES THE PART THAT MOST PEOPLE MISS COMPLETELY
THE PIVOT. The dreaded point where you have to take a look at what is not working. It can be painful. Most of us are forced into this spot. It’s a stagnant state that just won’t go! What used to work doesn’t seem to work anymore, or it’s still working but it’s exhausting. You might feel trapped, stressed, overwhelmed or like you want to completely abandon ship, throw in the towel and move to a remote beach in Mexico. (If all else fails, maybe do that.. it’s a good plan C) but first, let’s try to rework “plan A”! Where did all of that enthusiasm, creativity and hopeful energy that you had in stage 1 go?
THE PLATEAU. No, you aren’t crazy, You’re actually on a plateau! That enthusiasm is still there from your early days, it’s just temporarily on vacation so that you can feel the tension of your current position. Your old ways are stagnant and you’ve put a subconscious halt on yourself before you can go further. So what do you do on the plateau? You pause and reassess. The WORST thing you can do is torch everything and tear it all down even though you might want to and in the short term that might make you feel better. Take the plateau as a rest and opportunity to gain a higher vantage point.
Where to go from here
There is so much to be said here on this topic, that I recorded a video to bring more attention and clarity to this topic. Ready to dive in and get started? Check out the video below and don’t forget to hit that “subscribe” button to be sure to catch my upcoming masterclass series, “Moving from business building to branding”.
Ready to get off the plateau and into momentum? I’ve created a 3 hour deep dive, business branding jam session and audit to get you launched into a magnetic masterpiece of branding and magnetic motion in your business! Check out my signature “Biz Branding Blitz” deep dive at the link.
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