Well, that didn’t work how we thought it would.
Kim and I have been talking about Facebook ads all morning. When we started building Reality Check Your Startup, we believed we were onto something. We had real customer experiences to draw from, we worked through our value proposition to really focus in on the difference we were making.
So why are we having a hard time communicating that?
All of our clients agree that the “reality check” we’re talking about is incredibly important. So why aren’t people falling into our registration funnel? Why don’t we have hundreds of questions in the queue for discussion (and blog posts!)?
I have experience. In fact, the whole team building this program is comprised of founders who learned these lessons first-hand. I’ve worked with hundreds of businesses and startups.
I’ve seen how a great idea and a group of enthusiastic founders isn’t enough to actually make the sales you need. Add to that the fact that investors want a startup to make sales before they “earn” that investment. So there’s a ton of pressure to get customers and/or make sales.
So we took a look at the questions we were asking and found a major flaw with the questions, not the answers. We had to start asking different questions. As a side note, we share those questions in the free guide, How to Get More of Your Best Customers.
Back to the story of finding ourselves not getting what we expected.
We talked with current clients (customers), and they agreed that the product is on the right track, but we’re having trouble reaching people we don’t already know. People aren’t clicking on our ads.
So we analyze. How are we talking about this? Are the words we’re using the same as the words the new customers would use? Did we target our audience appropriately? Did we do a good job identifying the people who would benefit from our product?
We need to ask ourselves some enlightening questions. Why wasn’t talking to our current customers giving us the right language to use with future customers?
The only people we already know are the people who know this is a problem.
Do we need to find people who aren’t aware of the problem or just people who aren’t aware of why there’s a problem?
Remember, it’s hard to find out what the customer needs when they are aware of the problem. It’s practically impossible to find out what they need when they have no idea the problem exists.
So, the big question is …
What and who do we ask to find out how big a problem there really is, and whether we see the problem in the same way as our likely customers do?
We have to dig a little deeper, experiment a bit more and ask better questions. And that’s exactly what we’re doing. Basically, we reality checking Reality Check Your Startup.
While every entrepreneur travels the path to starting a business with assumptions (whether they know it or not), we can’t assume they know that their assumptions need to be tested. Instead, we have to look further down the path to things we know will eventually be a pain point – and for us, the pain point became more customers.
Every entrepreneur, every solution, every business, needs and wants more customers. It’s essential when trying to sell your idea or solution that you talk in their native language. And what’s the native language of an entrepreneur? Customers. Because without them, we wouldn’t exist.
And that brings us to today and the free guide, The Guide to Finding More of Your Best Customers (which you can get by entering your name and email below). It’s going to show you the exact questions you need to be asking your customers to find out how to attract more of them. It’s the questions we started asking when we realized our message (or at least our language) wasn’t resonating with people.
The hardest part of being an entrepreneur is realizing you don’t have it all figured out. But that’s also the most exciting. Going out and experimenting and discovering new things is what a true entrepreneur lives for. Sometimes, though, we forget to be that person when we are in the midst of creating something potentially great.
This lesson was a good reminder for us. We know that if we have the time we can eventually educate and convince anyone that they need to challenge their assumptions. But the challenges we faced here reminded us that until the entrepreneur realizes they have stacks upon stacks of assumptions – convincing them they need to challenge them will fall on deaf ears.
In other words, they have to be aware they have a problem before we can help them solve it.