A few years back, 25 to be exact ( oh gawd ) I ran a busy restaurant business. I was in my early twenties and partied as hard as I worked. Yeah, I miss the energy I had for both.
Every morning, as I opened Kafkas 'The Cafe With The Couch' at 6 am to face a mental day of queues of people, high energy service, and lots of talking, I always stopped into the local family-run newsagents to pick up the daily papers.
Every morning sometimes more hungover and exhausted than others, I usually grabbed a coffee to help me wake up on my walk to work.
Papers & a coffee, perfect.
Sometimes I would see an offer at the till area at 6 am, for 3 for the price of 2 soft, black-spotted bananas.
The squashy fruit 6 am offer was NEVER purchased.
Actually, it turned my stomach on many a morning as the night before antics flashed before my eyeballs.
The point being, 1. Timing, 2. The Product, and 3. Who You Are Targeting is what makes an offer that sells.
Let's dive into how YOU can create an offer that sells for your Creative work.
Stuck with what kind of offers you can put out there?
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A compelling offer is like a hit of caffeine at 6 am after a late night.
It makes sense.
It is timely, needed, and relevant to where you are at that time.
So how can you create an offer that audience or dream customers really can't refuse?
Remember, first you need to sell what people want to buy...
Q1: Have you validated what you do yet?
Validating your product or work does NOT equal friends and family purchases.
Once you have proven a product/market fit you need to focus on marketing to more of the same people.
This is not a blanket exercise and I see so many Marketing 'experts' talk about: finding your ideal client and sell to them. You just have to create a profile and find those people and sell to them...right?
It goes much deeper than that.
Sometimes you can have the right crowd at the wrong time. Shoppers are happy to buy squashy bananas on late summer mornings for smoothies but not at 6 am, hungover running to work.
However, and this is where it gets interesting if those squashy bananas were 'pitched' as the perfect hangover cure with frozen yogurt, berries, and honey then perhaps that 6 am offer would now convert much better.
See where I am going with this?
Wanna wrap your head around creating a 'pitch' for want of a better word...
Here is how you do it.
Here is what I mean by this.
When I started one of my earlier businesses in Cork, I offered people high-quality smoothies and really great coffee. We were a healthy eating community-driven hub and our customers were always saying how they loved our healthy offerings.
Our research showed us that healthy eating was on the up and people were more health-conscious and eager to choose the healthy option for breakfast and lunch.
BUT we found that many passed our little shop and went to the local deli to pick up their sambos & crisps and once a week stopped to buy a healthy smoothie and wrap to fill that ' want to be healthy need'.
Was that enough to sustain our business?
So we adapted our offering and included versions of what was already a proven product/market fit down the road. Then the business changed. Queues began to form and we increased turnover by 70% in year one of this change.
A good offer has to be what people actually want and are willing to pay for.
Think about how this applies to your business.
Do people want art for their homes/ offices? - yes in theory BUT what kind of art are they actually willing to pay for...or in other words...what 'offer' do you have to create for that particular homeowner?
Do people crave handmade soaps made from your garden? - yes of course in theory BUT how are you bundling, pricing, and positioning that soap to make sense to the monthly budget of a smell-conscious human?
An offer or a promotion always feels like a hard sell.
Especially as Creatives, we have an allergy to selling. It comes from deep within. That inner critic and imposter who screams...you are NOT a REAL artist, YOU ARE NOT a real business person, who are YOU to think you can sell this stuff?
So when it comes to selling we make a million and one excuses to dance around the actual question or text: buy now or click here to purchase or this costs €250.00.
In order to sell, we need to look at sales in a different way.
We need to make sure we are clear as to how our work, product, or service is adding value, happiness, and joy to someone's life.
Instead, we need to position our offer as an invitation, not a pitch for it to be managed from a place of calm and flow rather than a feeling of grease and sleazy handshakes.
Here is a formula for offer creation.
The Right Audience + the Right Promise + the Right Time = Offer You Can’t Refuse
What are the main objections to the offer?
How will you address these objections?
We arrived home after 6 days in France. It was a lovely break away to see my French family after a 2-year gap during covid travel restrictions of 2020.
We were tired, the kids were hungry and on a downer after basking in the sunshine, swimming pool, and being played with constantly by cousins and family members.
After an hour of landing, I took hold of my phone in the car as we set off on the road home. I wanted to check in with our house sitter to make sure she left the key in the designated place.
She quickly texted me back to say she was rushing for her bus but had shoved the key right inside the letterbox making sure it fell on the ground.
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!! That is our only key. FUCK.
Before I landed that news to a car full of tired hangry humans I took a breath and looked out the window of the car at the grey Irish sky and sighed.
Then of course I told my hubbie, went silent, and focused on problem-solving. To be fair I am kind of good at that. The skillset of an entrepreneur spills into real life sometimes.
Within 30 mins I had someone booked in ( I never knew how busy locksmiths were on Saturday evenings ! ) We arrived, ate, and waited - he eventually came and in 15 mins he had the door open.
Relief, happy dances, joy, high fives, etc...
The time came to pay him and he stated very quickly that would be €145, please.
This was a 5 min job - did that matter?
At that time in my life, I would have paid him 300e to get the door open and get those kids inside to bed but I did secretly wish he had spent a bit more time trying to open the door.
This was not rational, it did not make sense as he delivered what we asked, quickly but the perceived value of his effort or time did not make sense for a €145 bill.
Did it stop me from buying, of course not?
The point here is people purchase and are influenced to purchase, in different ways.
Perceived value and what that actually means has a HUGE influence on how we purchase, how much we purchase for, and who we purchase from.
The good news is that when you do understand what people want, everything else gets a lot easier.
The next step is to take your offer out into the world.
Are you doing that?
Do you need help with all of that stuff and not sure where to start?
You NEED to join The Biscuit FActory - we dive into all things offers, runways, timings, content planning to get you on the path for selling online & offline.
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