5 Effective Methods To Scale Your Business
“Scaling” can feel like a bit of a buzzword.
You hear it all the time when experts discuss business growth.
But, what does it actually mean?
SCALING is where you grow the business beyond the limitations of your own capacity.
Typically, in a service business, there will be a maximum number of hours you can work and a maximum amount you can charge for your time.
Combine these two things and you create a CAP on what you can earn. You can’t physically work any harder and you don’t feel you can charge any more for your time - so you MAX OUT.
Once you reach this point, you can either accept that you have reached your limits (yeah right!) or use an effective method to scale your business.
Fortunately, thanks to technology, there’s now a whole range of scaling options available to us as business owners.
Let’s go through the 5 key methods for effective scaling so you can find the ones that FIT BEST with how you want to work.
Here they are...
5 Effective Methods To Scale A Business
Scale Method #1 - Value Based
The first of our scaling methods is to create a value based pricing model. Value based pricing is all about focusing on the value you deliver for your clients, rather than the number of hours it takes you to complete the work.
Value Based Pricing is about the change you help your clients to achieve and how valuable that is to them.
Value based pricing is also the most powerful of the four key pricing strategies.
Often, we create unintentional limitations for our business. We only have a fixed number of hours to work in a week and we feel like we can only charge a certain amount per hour. Without meaning to, we are capping our revenue and our ability to generate profit.
Value based pricing helps to remove those limitations as your pricing stops being about charging an hourly rate. Instead it's about the value of the service you deliver and the impact it has on your clients businesses or lives.
This scaling method will increase profit for any business structure, it is a particularly effective starting palace for sole traders and small businesses.
Scale Method #2 - Leveraged Services
The second method is to offer leveraged services.
So, what exactly are leveraged services?
Well, a leveraged service is where you utilise your IP (intellectual property) to create reusable, educational resources for your clients and customers.
You bundle your knowledge up into a digital item, like an e-book, online course or evergreen webinar - create the product once, then sell it again and again.
It is a great way to avoid exchanging your time for money with hourly rate work. By creating leveraged products or services, you don’t need to stress about maxing out your 1:1 capacity. Instead, you can focus on marketing them repeatedly to multiple people at once.
A word of caution though. Some people refer to leveraging as Passive Income. You won’t hear me using that term as there is nothing passive about selling a leveraged service, an online programme or a course!
To sell leveraged services successfully, you still need to invest time and money into marketing, updating and maintaining them. However, they do open up your capacity to serve a wider base of clients and supplement your income, without being limited to hours in the day.
Scale Method #3 - Add 1:Many
Alright, so we just talked about leveraging in a digital sense. Now, let’s explore another form of leveraging.
That is, leveraging your time.
You probably have a bunch of clients that you work with in a one to one capacity. That’s how most businesses start out. And as we have already discussed, eventually, you will reach a limit on the number of individuals you can work with and the amount you can earn.
Our third scaling method allows you to work with more than one client at once so that you can leverage your time.
You can do this by creating some kind of group offering. It could be a group coaching experience, training workshops, events, retreats - really anything that helps you to serve multiple people at the same time.
The cool thing about group services is that they have a double benefit.
For your clients, a group offering is a more cost effective way to work with you. And for you, group services can be more profitable as you invest the same amount of time but get a bigger return.
Plus, you get to help more clients… it’s a win win!
Scale Method #4 - Outsourcing
Right, so we have covered off three methods that you can implement all by yourself. But number four involves boosting your capacity by bringing other people into your business - ie. outsourcing to contractors.
Outsourcing is another great way of scaling. Rather than being limited by your own capacity, you're actually expanding your available capability by building a team.
It will allow you to generate more revenue (and if done right, generate more profit), because you have more hours available by outsourcing.
When it comes to outsourcing to contractors there are two main approaches - outsourcing your internal business tasks, or outsourcing your client delivery tasks. You can choose to do either, or both, depending on your needs.
Outsourcing Your Internal Business Tasks
The first option is to outsource all those internal business activities like bookkeeping, admin, social media scheduling, inbox management. These are usually tasks that need to get done, but are often time consuming for you, and not in your "zone of genius" - mean you're likely to take longer, and not do as good a job as getting in an expert.
Instead, by outsourcing those tasks to an expert, you get a better end results, usually at a more cost-effectively hourly rate than you need to be earning, and it frees up more hours in your week to deliver paid work, meaning you actually make a return on the investment!
Outsourcing Your Client Delivery Tasks
The second way you can outsource is by bringing in additional capability - hiring contractors to help you complete your client work. Let me give you an example of how it could work:
Social media marketers specialise in creating and implementing strategy plans for their clients. They have oodles of expert knowledge about the different social media platforms and how you can get the most out of each platform. Their genius is in building the overarching strategy. BUT, there are a lot of tasks involved in that process that don’t necessarily need to be completed by them.
They could engage a designer to create branded social graphics, a content writer to write the captions and posts, a VA to schedule the content on the client’s social pages, and even certain software to streamline the strategy creation process.
But, won’t that cost a lot and eat into your profits?
Well, no. Generally, for a Social Media Manager, when priced up properly, it would cost less to outsource these repetitive tasks than complete them themselves. AND more importantly, they can focus their energies where their genius lies, which is ultimately what the clients are paying for.
Also, by removing those repetitive tasks from their plate, they can also deliver strategies to more clients.
And that’s how you get scalability and profitability!
Scale Method #5 - Build A Team
Our final scaling method is to bring in team members.
Working with contractors is great to help you bridge that gap between more work than one person can handle and not quite enough for a permanent employee. It is a great, flexible resource.
But, when you get to a point where you consistently have a significant amount of additional work every week, it is usually becomes more cost effective to bring on a permanent staff member.
TOP TIP: As a general rule, by the time you are consistently paying a contract for 3 days a week (otherwise known as 0.6 FTE - basically 60% of a full time person), it's often more cost effective to pay an employee FULL time, 5 days a week (even if you only have 3 days a week worth of billable work).
By bringing someone into your team as an employee (ie. paying them a fixed salary rather than a premium hourly rate), not only will it save money in terms of your outgoings, but you can also train your new team member to do things in the way you want to work and build a relationship to grow together.