I think most freelancers and creative entrepreneurs ruin it for themselves by either limiting what they do or offer way too much, enough to overwhelm potential clients. Like that writer you know who does only case studies for cancer-fighting pharmaceuticals or another one who does it all — business writing, copywriting, technical writing, and even articles for newspapers!
While I’m all for niching down, I wouldn’t go so narrow that clients have a hard time finding me. So, yeah, a writer who specialises in writing case studies with experience in pharmaceuticals will have a much better chance of developing business and a consistent revenue stream. Like Einstein said, “Everything should be made as simple as possible, but no simpler.”
Last year, I took the decision to narrow down my coaching practice to focus on developing leaders for Fortune 1000 companies. Period. This meant I won’t be taking in clients who are looking for business and/or executive coaching expertise. I neither had nor will ever have “life coaching” in my portfolio. I’m allergic to it and the 22-year-old life coaches out there.
But I digressed, the point is that I moved away from being a professional coach focusing on multiple specialisations to just one. It is niched enough to focus on developing leaders while opening myself to a myriad of industries within those 1,000 companies. The focus definitely is on quality and not quantity. So, my business model looks like this right now:
Coaching: Leadership Development
Mastermind Trainings: Leadership Development
Speaking/Keynotes: Leadership Development
Online Courses: Leadership Development
Did you notice the trend there? Getting more focused than this is an option but I think might be counterintuitive to the kind of work I want to do with organisations. It’s a great framework you can adapt to your business if you think it’s all over the place.
Simplifying almost always takes away most of the stress associated with businesses. It helps you develop a system that is tailored to your needs, goals, and the vision you have for your lean organisation.
Letting go, however, can be the hard part. Are you willing to?