This Is What Doing Business Looks Like In The XO Economy™ (Part 2)
20 seconds later…
And the second you did that, you broke XY’s hold over your business (and, you know, your self-worth). Poof! Just like that.
Hi, you. : )
Glad to have you back.
Now. Let’s get you out of this dip.
You’ll have to start by reframing your relationship with your inner wisdom. Because it takes practice to go from ignoring someone 24/7, to valuing her input over everyone else’s.
Then it’s time to untangle yourself from the XY machine. Which starts with opting out of the outside>in idea that “they” know more than YOU.
And finally, you’ll have to reorient your internal compass. (Re)learn how to make decisions that are in alignment with your values. Get reacquainted with your power (hello, power!) and quit trying to force things.
Remember XO Flo? She wasn’t birthed into Growth Phase 4 like some kind of entrepreneurial wunderkind. She’s been through every phase of the Entrepreneur’s Evolution — including The Moment of Truth.
And when Flo’s business took a nosedive into that pivotal ride-or-die moment?
MEET HEATHER DOLLAND, A REAL-LIFE FLO (AND AWESOME HUMAN BEING).
Heather represented small batch distillers in New York, hauling boxes and bottles around to restaurants, bars, and liquor stores, trying to get representation for her clients. She *also* worked in the entertainment industry (which totally sounds like she was an exotic dancer, btw), orchestrating “food crawls” for bachelorette parties, showers, etc.
For this back-breaking work, Heather charged $250… a month.
During this time, she wrote a book, Discovering The New York Craft Spirits Boom, about the craft cocktail movement in New York — her true passion. She poured loads of money and effort into the book, hiring a pricey PR firm and all-around busting her ass on the marketing and promotion. And in Heather’s words, all these efforts got her…
“Shit shit shit! Like the blind leading the blind.”
This was Heather’s Dip.
She pulled the plug on the old format of her business, because it “simply wasn’t sustainable or scalable or enjoyable.” And once she stopped chasing the wrong things (which only made her problem worse), she completely reimagined her business.
She retooled her core offering, and stopped doing the really hard physical work that didn’t pay very much. She worked on positioning herself as a thought leader, and fully committed to her All The Tastes of New York brand.
Now instead of repping a few small distillers, hauling liquor around all over town for $250/month, Ms. Heather is charging $5K a month to work with importers. She’s working with clients she’s passionate about, doing work that’s meaningful to her, and making bank. AND she gets to drink craft cocktails all day.
That’s what happens when you burn all the bullsh*it and reinvent your business around your value.
The big difference between XY Di and XO Flo? Di is focused on the external things she doesn’t have — clients and money. She’s chasing after solutions and experts, grasping at anything that promises a way out.
She’s in that panic buying phase of the Entrepreneur’s Evolution™. (Also known as Phase 2.)
But really, all those outside>in “solutions” are making her problem even worse, driving her business further and further into The Dip. (aka Phase 3.)
Meanwhile, Flo’s wised up to those XY tricks. And more importantly, she’s broken free of the machine. She’s focusing on the *right* things, and not getting distracted by know-it-all gurus or being bro’d into buying things she doesn’t need.
In order to thrive, every business needs two key pieces:
*in that order
Strategy is your long-term plan for sustainability and success, and it’s built around your value. (<<<Remember that. Your value always forms the heart of your strategy.)
Tactics are the tools and systems you use to execute your strategy. Building an Instagram following? Tactic. Putting out a live video every week? Tactic. Email campaigns, free seminars, standing on the side of the road with a cardboard sign? Tactic, tactic, and tactic.
As your morale starts to dip in Growth Phase 2, and then downright plummet into The Dip, you immediately grasp at the most obvious “problem” — money. You need to sell more stuff, and more people to sell it to, STAT!
You’re afraid, understandably so. And that fear sends you scrambling after quick-fix, big-promise “solutions.” Business blueprints. Plug-n-play marketing funnels. A course about online courses.
Get rich quick anything.
Tactic, tactic, tactic. (SAY TACTIC AGAIN.)
Just like XY Di.
You won’t be able to extricate yourself from this cycle until you address your strategy, because that’s what dictates which tactics to use.
Most entrepreneurs don’t really know what the words “strategy” or “tactics” even mean or why they matter. In the XY Economy™, that’s not an accident. Ahem.
The 5 Pillars of A Sustainable Business
Remember our little value-centric universe? Those aren’t just random images swirling around a watercolor heart. That’s your strategy, sister.
It’s the inside>out framework of a sustainable business that’s informed by your value.
That is what dictates which tactics you need, and which ones you can burn to the ground.
As you ground yourself in this new, inside>out framework, you can finallllly start tapering off your “random tactic” addiction.
The 5 Pillars are:
Business model. The first and and most important pillar is how you package and price your services. (Also known as your “offers.”)
Thought Leadership. How you go about positioning yourself as the sought-after expert, understanding how to talk about what you stand for and whom you serve.
Marketing Strategy. The deliberate actions that will attract the right people to you. (That’s right. You’ll have to have to learn — and implement — SOME marketing tactics. But when you’re grounded in the XO paradigm, you can let go of what’s not working and what other people say you “should” do.)
Sales Strategy. Closing the deal. You’re not out to get “any old” client. You get the PERFECT clients. You’re makin’ the bacon. This is about finding a sales strategy that’s effective and feels true to you.
Time, Mindset, Priority. Get a grip on optimizing these three pieces, and every time a decision or challenge comes up, you’ll have the resources to handle it because you know your value and your truth.
Once you understand all 5 Pillars, you’ll see that the XY Economy™ suspiciously ignores most of them, focusing mainly on the marketing piece. And nobody’s teaching you how all these pieces fit together around your unique genius.
It’s like shining a light on one tiny corner of the universe, and telling you that little corner is all there is.
That's how they keep you in the loop... by keeping you in the dark.
After all, if you wise up to this whole strategy thing, you don’t need to keep buying ineffective tactics that only make you feel shitty about yourself.
I once worked with a mastermind coach who told me, “Well, I’m not going to tell you ALL my secrets, because then you won’t renew your membership!”
Thanks but no thanks. I’d rather hang with XO Flo.
Once I started dissecting the XY Economy™ and building out XO, I realized I’d been working with the right components all along —
- A value-centric mindset
- The 5 Pillars
- Value before Strategy before Tactics
- Kickass women entrepreneurs, kicking even more ass
But it wasn’t until I went through my own XY frustrations that I was able to clearly see and articulate the difference between the two.XY Economy™ = outside>in = Bro Marketing™
XO Economy™ = inside>out = Evolve Accelerator™
1) To rebound out of The Dip, you need to confront your own Moment of Truth and commit — or concede.
2) The reason so many business owners get stuck in “random tactic addiction” is that they have no strategy — and most of us don’t even understand what strategy IS. And that’s exactly how XY wants it.
3) The 5 Pillars of A Sustainable Business hold the key by honoring your value, and fulfilling your visions and goals.
4) On the next page, I’m going to tell you about Evolve, my 6-month business accelerator for women entrepreneurs who are ready to break away from the XY machine and (re)build their business, XO style.