By Heather Green
I have been one busy bee lately… well that’s actually the story of my life. I have created so much work, and things to do that I rarely ever see a down time. However, when I finally get to kick back and relax- I savor every second
Last week I attended a SuperStar speaker series by an awesome business coach Michelle Villalobos and because I am a knowledge hoarder, it got my brain rolling and there was no slowing down. On Monday June 15th I taught a live class on FABAtv about Maximizing your Profits with an Airbrush system. We finished filming at 10 pm and at 9 am I had to be at The Up and Over Theater to teach 30 kids about Special effects. When I say I am jam slammed with things to do I ain’t lying!
Back to the story- I received a call from the director of the theater program asking if I taught classes on special effects and if she could book me to come teach the kids. I LOVE the kids so I immediately said yes. As I went to write the info on my calendar I realized I was pushing the envelope. I was working a gig Friday night, all day Saturday, church all day Sunday, a live class Monday and then teaching Tuesday. I was tired just thinking about the week ahead but I knew it had to be done.
So when I have a hectic week I force myself to create a POAP (plan of action and purpose) to maximize my time. So, rather then just winging my live class (as I have done in the past) I wrote notes and bullet points to make sure I covered the top topics I needed to express in order to get the most BANG from my class. Then I mapped out a strategy to make the SFX class purposeful. I did charge a fee to teach but that isn’t where I intended to make the most purpose or money. When I spoke to the director and she explained that all the students were between the ages of 10-14 I jumped at the opportunity to teach because I would have direct access to 30 potential clients (Mitzvah market).
This is what I mean by moving and working with a purpose. In order to maximize your time, during free gigs or discounted gigs this needs to be part of your practice. Its OK to give away your services at a lower rate or for free if you are working within a purpose.
I knew I was going to be teaching the pencil in the head effect so I took a bunch of pencils and made these for each kid. But I made sure to tell them about my Airbrush t shirts, tattoos, glow in the dark and UV painting, glitter tattoos and more. Its important to focus on every piece of info I gave them had a mission to meet these kids again. As a parent I know that when kids
want something they are relentless in their pursuit to get what they want. So if they loved me and my FX they might convince their parents to hire me for their parties. But I didnt stop there. I made sure to ask each of the kids for their Instagram names so I could tag them in the pictures I took. That’s how you market after the event. I took down all their info and tagged them when I posted the pictures. The kids were so happy they also tagged me in their posts too and I got some new followers But I didn’t stop there either. I made sure to follow up with the director and asked her if she would be willing to allow me the opportunity to come to their open house in the future or send info home with each parents registration package about my services. Because the director was so happy with my class, she was very willing to help me out. So, my 3 hour class turned out to be a lucrative opportunity to reach 30 potential clients. While I know it seems like a lot of work, it is not any less work than researching and cold calling for new leads. You can create just as many leads as you want by moving with purpose.
It took me a good long while to understand the importance of follow up marketing and seeking new marketing possibilities within my existing events. I would travel to conventions and forget to collect emails and names, and return home only wishing that I could send a thank you note or say hello again. All those times were missed opportunities to re connect and help your potential clients see your value.
In my 12 years as a business owner, I have found that clients want to feel like they are one in a million to you and when you can create systems that help you make the MOST of every job, event, and function you are opening the gates for more business growth.
There are no shortcuts to being booked solid, no easy way to generate leads or sales without putting in the work. I have been face painting for 15 years now and I still have to promote and market myself. Why? Because there is always something new, someone better, someone faster, and someone willing to work hard to get the sale. And when you are offering a service that might on the outside look like someone else in the industry the ONLY way to set yourself apart is by making yourself stand out with service.
By offering a solution to a problem before people know its a problem will make you stand out, making people smile when they think of you will make you stand out and most importantly treating potential clients like they mattered enough to follow up will make you shine bright like a star.
If you are having trouble remembering the follow up or having trouble keeping up with leads then you might be ready for Sales Force. I will have a guest blog about sales Force coming soon, and hopefully it will help you shine a light on where you could be grabbing more business and the tools you can use to cross market and promote.
These practices aren’t exclusive to just us creative entrepreneurs, they work across the board and have proved to be really successful. One of my dearest friends and mentors early in my face painting journey was a Yoga teacher and she owned the face painting market in Boca. She was booked solid because she mastered cross marketing with her private yoga clients into their childrens party business. It can be done, and when it is done correctly the results have proven to be one of the single most helpful tools for growth.
So when you are plotting out your week and are struggling for ways to reach new clients take a good look at your current database and markets and see how you can reach across, offer your services and reach out to them before they find the need to reach out to some one else.
Wishing everyone a happy productive profitable weekend.