The Five Costliest Business Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)

The Five Costliest Business Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)

You’re rolling along, building your dream business… when WHAM, something takes you by surprise.

You’ve made a mistake.

Maybe it was something you didn’t think was important, or maybe you just overlooked it accidentally. No matter what the reason, the end result is the same…

The mistake is going to cost you.

Maybe it’ll cost you time.  Maybe it’ll cost you money.  Maybe it’ll cost you frustration.  Maybe it’ll cost you credibility.  It could be anything, but you can be sure it’s going to cost you something.

Doesn’t exactly sound like a dream business, does it? Right. And that’s why you’ll want to pay attention to the following five costliest business mistakes… and how to fix them.

Take a look…

Mistake 1: Not Doing Market Research

Sometimes business owners get really excited about a product idea. And when they get excited about it, they assume that a whole lot of other people (AKA customers) are going to be just as excited as they are.

So then, they imagine huge product launches that are going to help a lot of people and put more money in their pockets in one day than they used to make all month.

Except when the big day happens, the sales don’t come. And along with the lack of sales comes a sinking feeling for the business owner who realizes he wasted a lot of time and money creating a product that no one wants.

 Don’t make this mistake. You can avoid this by doing two things:

  1. Do your market research. Finding out what people are already buying and then creating something similar (yet better) is one of the surest ways to make money. As the saying goes, “build a better mousetrap.”
  1. Test your ideas. If, despite your market research, you’re not sure an idea is going to fly, then test it on a small scale before you invest a lot of time and money.

For example, create a “lite” version of a product.  Instead of creating a 20-lesson course, start with a low-cost report.  If it sells well, then a full course on the same topic will likely sell well too.

Next…

Mistake 2: Not Creating Segmented Email Lists

If you’re not building lists at all, that’s a HUGE mistake. But it’s also a mistake to build lists without segmenting them. That’s because once you segment your lists, you can send out highly targeted content that results in higher conversion rates.

Sidebar:  In other words, you’ll be sending content (a mix of free information and offers for paid products) that is of greatest interest to those receiving it.

Here’s how to segment your lists:

  • Separate your prospect list (those who have never purchased from you) from your customer list (those who have purchased from you).

For example, there is no reason to continue sending emails for a particular paid product to those who have already purchased it.  You can send offers for a related product to those people.

  • Segment your prospect list according to the free offers they’ve downloaded or accessed.

For example, if a prospect has accessed a free offer, it shows they are interested in the subject matter of that content (as opposed to other topics they have not yet shown interest in).

  • Segment your customer lists according to the paid products they’ve purchased.

For example, if a customer has purchased a product, they are likely to be interested in purchasing a related product on the same subject, especially something that provides a way to speed up results or provides advanced information.

 TIP: Make use of your autoresponder tools, such as by segmenting your list according to if someone opened your last email.

It’s very simple to set up segmented lists if you’re using one of the major autoresponder services, so it’s a good idea to get started from day one.

Next…

Mistake 3: Neglecting Your Sales Copy

One of the most profitable skills you can acquire is to learn
the art and science of writing good sales copy.

This skill even comes in handy when writing other content, such as blog posts, social media posts and email newsletters. The better copy you write, the more reads, clicks and conversions you can expect to get.

Two quick thoughts on this…

  1. Offer hope, not hype. In other words, don’t try to play marketing mind games with people by preying on their emotions and forcing them into a bad buying decision.  Offer them genuine hope that they can solve their problems, reach their goals or enjoy their interests.
  2. Offer help, not hype. In other words, effectively communicate to your audience how your products can meet their needs.  Your objective is to convince them that you really can help them.  You don’t have to coerce people to buy something that really will benefit them.  You just need to show them that this is true.

The point is, it’s a good idea to start learning how to write effective copy.

Mistake 4: Titling Products As An Afterthought

There are a whole lot of prospects who are going to make decisions about buying your product largely based on the title of your product. It’s true. Your title can make or break the success of your product. And that’s why you want to be sure to spend time creating good titles.

Keep these tips in mind:

  • Brainstorm multiple titles. Then pick a few of the best ones and test them. You can do these tests fairly quickly (such as in a weekend) by sending large amounts of paid traffic using sites such as Google AdWords and even Facebook advertising. Just be sure you hold all other variables constant across your ads, with the only difference being the title of your product.
  • Present a big benefit in your title. (E.G., “How To Get Your First 1,000 YouTube Subscribers.”) Your audience needs to know what kind of result your product will help them achieve as a result of using it.
  • Use attention-grabbing words in your title. Examples of these “power words” as they are sometime known include: you, how to, new, simple, discover, revealed, instantly, quickly, fast, and easy.
  • Arouse curiosity whenever possible. (E.G., “The #1 Way To Lose Those Stubborn Last Few Pounds.”)
  • Use titling templates to help you brainstorm titles even faster. You can search for these at Google. (Ex. “product title templates”)

Next…

Mistake 5: Becoming A Perfectionist

Putting out good quality work is important. You always want to over-deliver to your customers.

But being a perfectionist is a way to waste time
without helping others or making money.

Because here’s the thing…

If you’re a perfectionist, then the various pieces and parts of your business will NEVER be good enough. You’ll endlessly tweak products, tweak sales letters and tweak ad campaigns… without ever releasing any of them. And that means you’re not getting results for your audience or your business.

Here’s what to do instead:

Tweak on the fly.

This means putting forth your best effort in all you do, and then releasing it to the public. Let your audience vote with their feedback and their wallets.

You can track and test the parts of your business (like sales letters and ad campaigns) to find out what your audience responds to. Sending customer satisfaction emails and surveys is another way to find out the likes and dislikes of your audience.

And then you can make tweaks with the confidence that your tweaks are going to produce great results.

End result? You can help other people and make money even while you’re still “perfecting” your product, copy and ad campaigns.

In other words…

  1. Don’t try to make things perfect before you release your product.
  2. Do try to make things perfect after you release your product.

(Or as close as possible to perfect.)

Do you see the difference?  One gets your product out there helping people and earning income, while the other option does neither.

In a nutshell…

Aim for excellence in everything you do before others see it,
and aim for improvement in everything you do after others see it.

Now, let’s wrap this up…

Conclusion

You can be humming along, thinking everything is going great – and then it can all come to a screeching halt where you’re getting really poor results. Fortunately, if you follow the advice above, you’ll be able to avoid some of the costliest business mistakes.

Do the right things.  Don’t do the wrong things.

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