Ep. 79 Striking Balance When Scaling To A Million In Revenue

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I wanted to share with you a discussion that I had with a friend on Facebook. She reached out to me and she asked me about my journey to making a million dollars in revenue, but specifically about balancing your drive and your hustle to reach this goal that you know that you’re capable of, with being a wife and a mom and having that balance.

And what should her trajectory look like? Where should she double down? Where should she stop and say, “okay, wait. Maybe this is not worth it.” She’s really very much wanting to do it the right way, and the best way for herself, her business, and her family, of course.

So I told her, I said, “This is a big question. I think I’m just going to answer it as a podcast because I bet there’s a lot of people, moms and dads who listen to this that have this same struggle.” So what I want to say first and foremost is that there really isn’t just one way to do this game. Now, I do think that women, more so than men, but you know, I’m sure there are exceptions to the rule, struggle with a tremendous amount of guilt. Especially if they’re moms of young children, because there’s a lot of conditioning that we’ve taken just from society that we are of course, supposed to be there for our kids. But there’s a guilt, there’s like a guilt gland that seems to be dialed in much stronger with moms than even dads.

So if we take the child sort of discussion out of the matter, it’s hard enough to figure out how to scale to a million dollars without any extra guilt, never mind adding that in. So I kind of want to separate the two issues a little bit.

So from a real strategic standpoint how do you get to a million dollars? That requires you to look at what you currently sell, and how much of it you’ve been selling and compare that to the audience that you currently have. For example, if you are making $20,000 a month and you have a thousand dollar program, so you basically get 20 students a month, what you want to look at is, “How many leads did I need to get those 20 students?”

So maybe you need, maybe you have 5000 leads a month, and it gets you 20 students, at 20k a month. So what you can do is look at, the first thing is “What do I have to do to scale my audience?” So in order to get 20 customers at a thousand dollars each, I need 5000 leads. Well, how many customers would I get with 20 thousand leads, and how much would it cost me to get 20 thousand leads?

And then you can look at, does this make sense to do with a joint venture partner, where I find people who already have my audience? Does it make sense that I scale with Facebook and Instagram ads, how expensive would that be? Do I turn on some organic traffic strategy, whether it’s YouTube or Pinterest or Instagram, or SEO? Those are longer plays, so it takes longer, so you have to think if you’re trying to reach your goal by December, that’s going to be hard to do with SEO. But it is a long game that sort of builds over time.

So that’s the first thing you want to do, look at your current revenue, what your current revenue looks like, how many leads you’re needing to get that current revenue, and how much it would cost for you to double or triple the amount of leads you’re getting.

The second thing you want to look at is lifetime value. This is a term, a KPI that a lot of marketers talk about. How much is your customer spending with you over the lifetime of them being a part of your company? And if you only have one product, it’s very easy to figure out what lifetime value is. If you have a ecommerce store, you have multiple products, you kind of want to look at, how much are people spending over time? There’s actually a whole formula inside of FG society for any of you guys are in that program. I actually teach you how to calculate lifetime value.

So for example, in Funnel Gorgeous, which is the brand I run with Kathy, We have a lot of products, we have a lot of little products. So we figured out our lifetime value, and we know it is about $170. So the average customer spends that. So think about it like average cart value, which is another KPI, ACV, this is what the average person who comes through a funnel spends. This is what the average amount of money a customer spends with you. So we know for every new customer we get, we can assume about $170 in revenue. So then what you can figure out is how many new customers do we need in order to hit a million dollars? So we can say, well we need 10,000 more customers, how do we get it? And that’s just getting new customers.

Now the other thing you could look at when you look at your lifetime values, you could say, “gosh, my lifetime value is low. We want people to spend more. So maybe we need to introduce a new product line to the existing customer base.” And this the second strategy. So the first strategy is looking for new customers and figuring out how many new customers you have to hit a million. And then the second strategy is how do I get the customers that I have now to buy more frequently, or to buy something more expensive? There’s two ways to do that.

The more expensive is to figure out some set in time events, things that you can do that help them ascend to that next offer. Especially if you have an offer, this is easy. So for, let me give you an example with Funnel Gorgeous. We have Launch Gorgeous that’s going to launch in the fall. We can do a launch or we could possibly do a virtual event, and at that event we could sell it and then get people into the program.

So the virtual event would double, number one it would be a low ticket event, so it’d bring some revenue. But number two, it would be designed to ascend people into that higher ticket offer. If you don’t have a higher ticket offer, that would be the time to create one.

So the second strategy is really looking at all of that, what you have to do to get more traffic, and to get people to buy more often, which is like a continuity play. Even if you’re not selling a membership, bu tthey’re buying more frequently because of the type of things that you’re selling, or to buy something more expensive. And once you look at that, and I have a free strategic planning worksheet that really can help you, it’s on my Facebook page at Julie Stoian Live, just look for the video that says Strategic Planning Worksheet.

So you can do that, and that will help you back into a million. It is hard to go to a million dollars in sales with just one product, if that product is less than a thousand dollars. If it’s a thousand dollars or more, you can get to a million pretty easily on one product. But a lot of people still need to figure out how they can create another offer in there.

So once you have figured that out, and I would back into it with a spreadsheet and look at the various scenarios, the second thing you want to look at is the ease with which it’s going to take you to execute on all the ideas. Because probably you’re going to come up with a bunch of ideas, “I could do this. I could do this. I could do this.” And you want to look at the ease.

I got this from my friend and fellow insider Dave Lindenbaum, he got it from somebody else who I can’t remember, but he rates all of his ideas with impact, confidence and ease. Impact is how much of an impact is this going to have on my goal? How confident am I that it’s going to have that impact? Meaning like, am I reasonably sure that this is going to help or am I just kind of thinking about it? And then ease is how easy is it to get off the ground?

So if you have a couple of ideas and one is like, ‘Oh, I’m going to create a high ticket offer one on one and I’m going to sell it to existing customers.” That’s relatively easy versus, “I’m going to create a certification program.” That’s going to be much more difficult.

So you want to look at which projects are going to be more quickly, because you want to be able move the projects that happen a little bit more easily to the front of the line because and especially if you have a high confidence score that you know that it’s going to make a difference.

So sometimes our best ideas are super complicated ideas like, ‘Oh, I need a brand new website, and I need new branding and all this kind of stuff.” But then it requires you to roll that branding out through all of your products and is that really going to, is it really what is impacting your revenue? If the answer is no, then you don’t want that to be a high priority.

So back in the fall Kathy and I were talking about trying to hit a million dollars, because we really wanted to walk the Two Comma Club stage and that was sort of a goal. So we were very much up against the wall with a timeframe, so everything we did in our business, in probably a six week period, was very much driven by, ‘we’d like to reach that goal.’ Whereas if that goal was not there, we’d probably, we would have maybe done things a little bit differently. So when you’re thinking about your goal of hitting a million dollars by a certain date, is there something behind that that’s important to you? Because this was really important, this was Kathy’s first Two Comma Club and it was really important to her. So we knew because it was important, we reprioritized. But had that not been there, or had it been further out, we might have rearranged things.

So you want to make sure that your goal isn’t arbitrary like, “Oh, I have to make a million dollars by this date, otherwise I don’t know what’s going to happen.” You want to make sure that that date, that there’s some meaning behind it. And sometimes when you make goals like that, you get close to hitting it but you don’t quite hit it, is that going to be okay? So you really want to look at your motivation behind it.

When I, my first million dollars in business didn’t come through just one product, it came through two products. I had a membership and I had a signature program, TDG, so those together created that million dollar mark for me. So I, you know for Funnel Gorgeous a million dollars came through, again, a funnel stack, which was 2 offers kind of put together. But yet I have helped lots of people hit a million dollars with just one offer. But again, it’s hard to do if the offer is less than a thousand dollars. I have a couple of people who did it with a $500 offer, but most people do it with a thousand dollar offer or higher. So just keep that in mind based on your business.

Now, I want to transition a little bit away from tactics and talk about being a mom for a second. I believe that there is a time and a season for everything. I also believe that momentum and creativity come in bursts. This is always a little bit of a hard thing to explain to people who aren’t entrepreneurial, especially spouses and children who don’t quite understand. But I know enough to know that the balance that I enjoy today, the lifestyle of gardening and going to Disney World, when there isn’t Coronavirus, and all that kind of stuff I enjoy today because of the hustle that I did.

So it’s very tempting, and you’ll see business owners do this, where they make a lot of money and then they create this lifestyle for themselves, and then they sell this lifestyle, and almost kind of you know, talk badly about what they did in the past, or talk about it like it was less than, forgetting that that was a legitimate stepping stone to them being where they are now. There are seasons of hustle in business, and sometimes it’s hard to see where they start and stop. And the danger is that sometimes you don’t know how to stop. And this is, you know, the analogy that I talk about is like, a tiger is chasing you in the woods, and I know for me in 2015 when I was really trying to get my financial feet under me, and I had just come out of a divorce and it was very stressful, there was a sense of a tiger chasing me. I was hopped up on some adrenaline for sure. But I’m, I don’t regret what I did because I was riding the momentum and the adrenaline, and sort of that cash in.

And that was a season where I would not, that season doesn’t hit all the time, and I used it, I used that sort of crisis to my advantage. You know the tiger of poverty was chasing me. So it created this drive, I also had a period where I wasn’t with my kids as much, and that was painful, and I took that pain and that grief and I used it, I used it to create something. And for me to then sit and look back on that and be like, ‘Oh my gosh, I made such terrible decisions, or I didn’t do it right.” Or whatever I would judge about myself in the past, would be so short sighted. Because I was using what was in front of me to the best of my ability to create something that now I get to enjoy.

And so I just, I kind of scoff a little bit when I see influencers who talk badly about their hustle past because it’s short sighted. Hind sight is always 20/20. But the danger, the danger is that you may not realize that the tiger has stopped chasing you and you won’t know how to stop. And I think that was something that I sort of ran into once I hit that revenue goal I was looking for and I started to feel that financial security. And I was working like a dog, I had Funnel gorgeous, I had Digital Insiders, I had Create Your Laptop Life, I had you know, I was working with Russell at Clickfunnels, and it was just, you know, my life was suffering.

I did not realize that the tiger had stopped chasing me because I was stuck in this pattern. And it took a real strong, I mean it took therapy, it took inward reflection to really look and be like, “Oh, the tiger’s not there anymore. I don’t have to run at this pace forever.” And I was able to start to unwind and untangle some of the habits I picked up along the way and say, “Okay, what do I want this to look like now?”

So that’s the thing that you want to be mindful of, when you know there’s a season of hustle and you know there’s a season of drive. Number one, understand your motivation. Number two, get really clear on what things you will need to do to make that happen. And then number three, watch for signs when it has happened so that you can sort of unlearn some of the things that you might learn in the process. And that’s what I had to do.

So now I have a little bit of a different vibe with my life that I recognize. I recognize where I came from. To some extent, you’re never going to be rid of the guilt. The guilt is always going to be there. I’ve never figured out how to get rid of it. I have learned to live with it. I have learned to just accept that as a mom there’s always going to be this tug, and I have to just do what I know is best for me, because if I’m unhappy and I’m miserable, I am going to be a terrible mom. And I know that I care so much about my children that I don’t have to worry that I’m going to irreparably harm them because what’s best for me is also as an extension what’s best for my children. Because I love them, I would jump in front of a train for them, in a heartbeat.

So I just have to trust that my instincts as a mom will guide me. And as far as spouses and friends and all that kind of stuff, I think that when they, you know if they’re not entrepreneurial and they’re worried, and they see, “Oh my gosh, you’re burning the candle at both ends.” It’s important to have the discussion of like, “This is the goal, this is what I think it’s going to take to get there, and this is the timeline I think it’s going to take to get there.” and creating boundaries around it so that they don’t feel like it’s this never ending thing that’s never ever going to stop. I think that you can mitigate a lot of spousal disagreements about that.

So I hope that helps for those of you guys who are working towards a million dollars and feeling the pull of where do I start? What do I double down on? What do I let go of? And how to manage that as a wife and mom. I hope this was helpful for you. And thank you to the person who reached out to me, because it’s a great topic. I hope you guys have an amazing day. Talk soon.