My first time in online business, I wasn’t paying attention.

by Tara Fitness

3 massive mistakes that ensured my business went down in flames.

In June, I stacked every piece of my online fitness business into a pile, doused it in gasoline and dropped a flaming zippo on top. I’d worked my hands to the bone for years trying to build a successful online business. In the end, all I had to show for it was a truck tonne of flaming debt.

Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, I took a little time out for growth. While I sat in the garden, baking in the summer heat, I wondered what the hell went wrong. One afternoon it smacked me on my sunburnt forehead.

In running my business, I was always frog-hopping to the next thing on the to-do list, never truly taking time out to understand if that item deserves its place on the list.

I didn’t understand my high-ROI tasks.

I had no idea which tasks would bring me a high return on my investment of time or income. In fact, I never even considered the idea. Instead, I wanted to have a professional looking website, landing pages and systems.

I spent so much time building my systems because I wanted to over-deliver and keep clients on board. But this meant I didn’t prioritise the tasks that brought clients in the door. It’s a lot like spending all your time polishing the silver in your restaurant and never opening the doors. When you don’t let people know you’re open and able to help them, they walk right by you and into your competitor’s saloon.

TIP: Take a few minutes today to understand which tasks bring you a high return on your investment (of cash or time). Then drag those to the top of your priority list.

I didn’t play to my strengths.

One of the reasons I wanted to focus on my systems is because I didn’t want people to be disappointed when they signed up to one of my programs. I thought my delivery systems needed to look flashy and high-tech, or people would be overwhelmed with buyers remorse.

In hindsight, that wouldn’t have been the case at all. The clients I worked with all signed up for coaching with me because they had a great relationship with me and they trusted I could help them achieve their goals. It wouldn’t have mattered if I’d used a spreadsheet or a fancy system to deliver their programs; it only mattered that I helped them in the way they believed I could.

I was so worried about having to compete with large companies; I forgot people would work with me because they want to work with the face of the company. Not everyone wants a cookie cutter program and no support.

TIP: If you’re a small business or solopreneur, YOU are your point of difference. Use it, or you won’t succeed.

I tried to be everywhere and ended up nowhere.

This time last year, I had social media profiles on 10 different networks. I had 4 groups, 2 pages and a personal profile on Facebook alone. I could have hired a full-time employee to manage my social media; it was that overwhelming. Trying to keep up took so much of my time, but it didn’t pay off.

Why? Because I forgot the golden rule of social media. Algorithms will continue to change, and you have zero control over your reach. I put so much time into my social media when in reality, I should have been focusing on building an email list, and relationships with the people on that list.

TIP: Use social media sparingly, with the intent to get people on your list. If you want to own your audience, make sure it’s on email.

I wasn’t paying attention, and my business failed.

While running my first online business, I allowed myself to become so distracted by gurus and flashy ‘success secrets’, and it killed my business. In hindsight, I never took time to look around and make sense of what I was doing wrong. I always just tried to work harder.

In reality, I was scrambling to pull the pieces of the puzzle together, but never realised the 1000 pieces in the box came from 6 different puzzles. I set myself up to never be able to complete the picture.

Now I am paying attention.

I’m currently building Tara Fitness’ Online Business Mark II. I’m happy to report, it’s going a whole lot better this time around because I now do three things consistently:

  • Prioritise my high-ROI tasks and delegate or delete almost everything else;
  • Plan my service offerings around my strengths; and
  • Limit my social media usage and instead, focus on building a nurturing my email list.

Now I’m paying attention, I realise this is the only way I will succeed.

Are you an online entrepreneur working 20 hours a day, sacrificing everything you love in life to build your business, but despite swimming as hard as you can, the current keeps you stuck where you started?

If so, it’s time to overhaul your business. When you download ‘The Stress-Free Success Toolkit’, I’ll teach you the exact strategies I used to level up my business (and income) while offloading a truck tonne of stress and responsibility. Get your free copy here.

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