I’m going to share with you my two favorite resources for creating a business strategy.
Strategy gets totally overlooked in the world of entrepreneurship. Everybody is talking about sales funnel, Facebook ads, and Instagram marketing. All of those are incredibly important.
If you’re hustling on a bunch of tactics without a strategy as a foundation then you are on a treadmill and you’re not going anywhere.
You are hustling and putting in all that effort, but it is all for nothing.
But if you have an effective strategy backing that up then all of that effort can be put to really good use.
So you got to have a strategy.
What is a ‘strategy’?
It seems like it is one of those highfalutin concepts that big expensive firms or working with a Fortune 500 has.
But as a small business do I really need a strategy? Can’t I just go out there and make some money?
Well, the reality is that you’re competing in a marketplace that is absolutely brutal.
We are all competing in a marketplace that’s cutthroat and has tons of competition. And the reality is that the only reason that customers are going to choose to spend their money with you versus the competition is because you have some sort of differentiation.
You have a reason that you are different that that’s compelling enough to the customers that they are going to choose to work with you instead of the competition.
That’s what a strategy is all about. It is simply figuring out how you’re going to differentiate yourself in the marketplace and how you are going to bring that differentiation to life. How you are operating, marketing, and selling every day out there in the marketplace.
That’s all it is.
It doesn’t have to be anything more complicated than that.
Let me share my two favorite resources.
There is a book called Blue Ocean Shift. This actually the second book, the first one is the Blue Ocean Strategy. You can get either one or both and you are going to be in great hands.
The second resource is the The Inside Advantage by Rober Bloom.
The thing that I love about these books and the resources that come along with it, is they give you a number of practical tools that will help you determine exactly how you should differentiate your business.
You have to pick out how you are going to be different. Are you going to be a low cost? Or are you going to be a luxury? Are you going to offer certain features or not?
You are going to have to make decisions and they should be backed by strategy. They should not be made willy nilly.
Blue Ocean gives you tools to use to help you determine which of those decisions you should make to differentiate your business and why so. It is backed up in some decision making and thinking that you have confidence in your strategy and why you’re doing what you’re doing.
Once you have that differentiation and you know how you are going to compete, then you have to figure out a way to bring it to life in the marketplace.
The Inside Advantage
You have to figure out a way to make sure that customers experience your differentiation and strategy.
My favorite book for that is The Inside Advantage by Robert Bloom.
This guy has helped all kinds of companies develop strategies including Southwest Airlines. He is a very famous and really smart guy.
The thing that I love about this book is that it is super practical.
Now that you know how you want to compete, what are you actually going to do bring that to life? What are the messages you’re going to use and how should you alter your customer experience? What are you going to do to make those people actually experience the strategy that you have so that you know it is making an impact?
Because if you have a strategy and you are not actually bringing it to life in the marketplace for your customers every day so that you are experiencing it… you might as well not have a strategy at all.
So that’s what the second book is all about.
Make your own strategy now!
That’s two fantastic resources: The Blue Ocean Strategy/Blue Ocean Shift and The Inside Advantage.
Get yourself a copy of each of them and read them right away. Go get the tools and frameworks that they offer you in these things and put them to use.
In your business, you are going to have a lot more confidence in the direction that you are going in. All that hustle that you are putting in is going to be based on the foundation that’s going to help you be more successful.
So go and make your own strategy now and tell us about it!