- MODULE 12 -
FUNCTIONAL BUSINESS MODELS AND YOUR CLIENT PIPELINE
Get the most out of the Elemental Business Incubator by following the Week 12 checklist. Download the checklist and check off each step as you go!
This model positions you as an authority with followers.
Ways to monetize this business model: Sell a group course or passive income product, work 1:1 clients, enroll clients in VIP days, endorse products and get paid via affiliate income (the maker pays you a small fee for sending customers their way).
The Energetic Focus is Engagement and Authority.
Stella hosts a Meetup group focused on her area of expertise. She experiments with a mix of free meetups and paid workshops. The group of 300 local women is the start of her client pipeline and source of many 1:1 clients (which is the way she enjoys working).
Chloe has a Facebook group focused on her zone of genius. She shares teachings that are relevant to the people she wants to hire her. She helps potential customers see the difference between her work and other practitioners by the questions she asks, the topics she chooses to focus on and how she guides conversations. The group of 100 women is the start of her client pipeline and the source of many mastermind clients (which is the way she prefers to work).
This model focuses on well defined offers and 1:1 or small group work. It can start with free sessions (early in your business or ongoing).
Ways to monetize this business model: Host workshops, sell group course or mastermind, enroll clients in VIP days, sell a digital mini course addressing the problem, do consulting work.
The Energetic Focus is Connection, Clarity and Self-Trust.
Grace created a strategy session around one particular problem in her niche. She did a series of 15 free sessions in exchange for feedback, so she could get deep insight and clarity on the particular ways her prospective clients were getting blocked. She used each session to upgrade her understanding of how each client tried to solve the problem. As she connected with each person she also took notes and listened closely for specific language describing the problem.
She repurposed that language into her marketing copy and relaunched the ultra specific offer (using the insights she gathered during the free sessions to decide on what social media platform to focus on!). She also pitched herself as a guest on podcasts and other people’s blogs to share her story and her work.
This model focuses on one to many transmissions, like writing books, having a podcast or YouTube channel, public speaking, even Pinterest.
Ways to monetize this business model: Get paid to be a keynote speaker at events, royalties from book sales, ad revenue from YouTube channel, sponsorships for podcast, sell an evergreen (recorded) course or product, review courses or products for affiliate income.
The Energetic Focus is Broadcasting and Visibility.
Teia created a YouTube channel around her area of expertise and develops videos that focus on solving problems relevant to her audience. She has a close eye on competitors and industry trends which allow her to ride the wave of interest in specific issues. She alternates calls to action on her videos and encourages viewers to sign up for her newsletter list or join her digital course. She fosters connection with other influencers in her space and looks for ways to build relationships with amazing people who will share her work.
Natasha wrote a book on a topic she is passionate about and has the book for sale on multiple platforms online as well as offering a digital copy through her website. The book has a reading guide for book clubs to use and it isn’t uncommon for book clubs to reach out about her recording a video or joining a call and answering questions (the offer is on the book club guide and people ask!).
She uses the social proof of having written a book to fuel her pitches to speak as a workshop leader or keynote speaker for conferences and events. Every time she speaks she asks for feedback from the event organizer and uses that feedback as a testimonial. She also asks for video footage and leverages that material so future event organizers know her energy and style. Her speaking gigs started free but have bloomed over time to pay her several thousand dollars per event.
This model focuses on unique tools, frameworks or methods.
Ways to monetize this business model: Sell a group course, work 1:1 clients, enroll clients in VIP days, design a certification for your framework and train trainers in it (licensing/franchise model).
The Energetic Focus is Creativity and Service.
Zoe helped clients in her niche and noticed that the typical answers that a lot of more popular bloggers were giving weren’t cutting it. She saw that there were certain tips and tricks that were more helpful for clients who came to her and even created tools of her own. She saw that there were different milestones that people went through so she created a program focused on solving the problems for her clients, using her unique method. She sells her program using a focused email nurture sequence so potential clients get to know her novel methods and every few months sells VIP days where she takes clients through a version of her process that works well in person.
When you find the model that works for you you will FEEL BETTER. You will feel more expanded and energized/happy versus drained/weary.
These are the four primary functional business models but there are others (and they can be combined). One important model that I did not list is partnering with a successful practitioner and either providing them unique and complementary work to their existing client base or handling their overflow work.
What do you notice about which model feels best?
If this whole conversation stimulates overwhelm you can put it aside for now and just focus on what is calling you. Over time, with consistent aligned action, this will build itself.
To create your pipeline consider what problem you help people solve first. (If you don’t have clients or are still working to clarify your soul genius, come back to this. It will help you later but I don’t want you to spin out with it now.)
A pipeline can look like this:
You can use a social media scheduler and email nurture sequence to automate selling your first paid offer (and / or discovery calls). When you automate these it can reduce the emotional sting out of taking of space. Ultimately this is something you have to heal but it can help you as you get into continuous selling.
Pre-2018 my pipeline looked like this:
In 2018-2019 my pipeline looked like this:
In coming years I expect my pipeline will include a coach training and certification. But for now. This is it.
This pipeline didn’t form in a day. (or a month!) It took me time to realize that people were coming to me in a certain way. And it took time to create a path for them to move through my work.
Remember, start small. You don’t have to know the 5 year (or 5 month!) strategy in order to unlock what’s working today. And consider too, you might need to experiment and try some things you ultimately decide you don’t like in order to get to what you do like.
It will take time to grow your soul led business. But it’s worth it! And you get to have heaps of fun along the way.
I know that may sound underwhelming but it works.
What are the problems that your people get frustrated with? Offer a solution to a small chunk of that problem. It should be concrete and help them move forward.
For instance in 2017 I did a webinar that focused on how the different phases of business growth and the things entrepreneurs needed to work on at each stage to be successful. PEOPLE LOVED IT. Why? Because one of their biggest problems was not knowing what they should be focused on.
You will probably have to do some testing to figure out what is 1) a problem that your people need help with and 2) a small enough chunk that it helps them.