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Given that small businesses are such a force of nature in the global economy, with small businesses making up 99.7% of U.S. firms with paid employees, it’s impossible not to pay attention. But starting your own business is a risk. The survival rate for new businesses past their first five years is only 50%, with only about one-third of small businesses making it to their 10th anniversary.

To support those willing to take smart risks, the U.S. Small Business Administration recognizes the critical contribution of American entrepreneurs and small business owners through the events of National Small Business Week. Similarly, the Microsoft partner ecosystem is rich with enterprising small business owners eager to share their talent with the world.

But making sure your voice is heard in such a saturated market can be difficult. What’s the best advice we’ve heard for small business owners to make it past that 5-year drop-off?

Find your niche.

Finding Your Niche

Finding your niche may be easier said than done. In the latest Microsoft Partner Network podcast, we heard about how important that differentiation is to small businesses from entrepreneur and sales coach Matthew Pollard.

Matthew Pollard, Executive Director of Small Business Festival, founded this annual conference to help small business owners get out of their isolation, learn from experts, and join a community of like-minded entrepreneurs. Small Business Festival 2017, powered by the City of Austin and Capital One Spark Business, features over 300 speakers and interactive workshops on topics like growing your business, networking, financing, leadership strategies, sales, and marketing. Small Business Festival is holding free events across 18 US states and has partnered with Microsoft to live stream premium Austin events globally, viewable here or at participating Microsoft stores.

Matthew has five multi-million-dollar business success stories on his resume and has earned a name for himself as a business differentiation, marketing, and sales powerhouse. He introduces himself as the Rapid Growth Guy. Here’s why.

“For me, I’m a business coach. I’m a branding expert. I’m a sales strategist and social media strategist. I’m so many things that nobody cares, right? The high-level benefit is that if I say I’m the rapid growth guy, that I help organizations large and small obtain rapid growth, the power of that gets me heard in a crowded market.”

– Matthew Pollard, Entrepreneur and Business Coach

5 Questions to Define Your Business

On the podcast, Matthew said that many businesses haven’t yet spent the time they need to on defining their mission or their brand. According to him, it’s simply a matter of prioritizing that effort. He said, “A lot of times, it’s about asking yourself the right questions. You have all the answers in your head, now it’s time to get them down on paper.”

Here are 5 straightforward questions to ask yourself to get those thoughts pinned down, and identify what will make your business unique and profitable.

1. What makes you different as a business?

Is it your customer experience? Your people? Your solutions or services? Your IP? When finding your niche, you need to drill down deeper into what makes you different in a way that no other company can replicate.

2. What makes your best clients or customers unique?

Your niche is often best described by your clients. They are your target audience and the best chance for leads and recommendations to keep your business going strong in the early years and beyond.

3. Why do your customers buy from you?

If you don’t know, you should certainly ask. Feedback is a powerful tool for positive change. Finding out what works and following that lead will help position you for success.

4. What about you makes people pay attention?

As Matthew describes above, it’s not what he does that makes him stand out. It’s what’s different about what he does that earns him the attention of his audience. Take a closer look at what you can offer that will make people want to learn more.

5. Why do you do what you do?

Often new businesses get wrapped up in the specifics of what and how they do business. Too often they forget about the why. Ask yourself why you are in business, and that will lead you to your passion and your ideal niche.

For more amazing insights from Matthew Pollard into the secrets to rapid growth for organizations of all sizes and markets, tune in to the latest episode of the Microsoft Partner Network podcast. Subscribe to the podcast for weekly episodes where we speak with industry experts and thought leaders on the cutting edge of business and technology. Past episodes are available for download on iTunesSoundCloudiHeartRadioGoogle Play Music, and YouTube.

What questions have you found helpful in identifying your business niche? Share your experiences in the comments below.

 

Rachel Braunstein: Welcome to the Microsoft Partner Network Podcast. Every week, we bring in industry leaders and Microsoft partners to talk about the big ideas shaping business and technology today.

Hey, everybody. Welcome back to the Microsoft Partner Network Podcast. I’m Rachel. I’m here with Matthew Pollard outside of SXSW in Austin, Texas. Matthew is a rapid growth speaker. He is the Executive Director of the Small Business Festival and host of Better Business Coach Podcast, which you can find on ITunes.

Super excited to have him here. Matthew, tell me a little bit about yourself, so the partners can learn how fantastic you are.

Matthew Pollard: Sure, definitely. So, I think that probably the most relevant element is that predominantly learned how to sell really by doing it. I was an introverted kid with reading speed of a sixth grader and I very unfortunately lost my job just before Christmas and kind of found myself in sales. And after five days product training, I got thrown onto the street and got told to go and sell. And I still remember 93 doors before my first sale and it was a horrible experience, but with the reading speed of a sixth grader, I couldn’t exactly pick up a Brian Tracy or a Zig Ziegler book. I kind of had to just learn and the way I found was YouTube. And I taught myself how to sell on YouTube and within the space of six weeks, I became the number one salesperson in the largest sales and marketing company in the southern hemisphere. And from there, I really just moved into starting my own businesses and I’ve been responsible for five multi-million dollar success stories in industries as diverse as education to telecommunications. And then just recently actually, only a few years ago, I moved to the U.S. and all the businesses that I had run up until then were all bricks and mortar, direct sales people, that sort of thing. Then, I decided to create my first online business and within six months, I had created six-figure business. Within I think nine months, I was inducted into the International Sales Blogger Hall of Fame. I was seven months after launching my Twitter profile, I was listed as the 43rd most retweeted business coach on Twitter. My podcast hit new and noteworthy in three separate continents and I’ve been featured on Forbes and Fortune and a bunch of different things. America’s been really good to me. I quite enjoy it here.

Braunstein: So, why have you been getting so much recognition? What is it that you understand that others don’t?

Pollard: It’s actually interesting. So, I always thought my success had always come from sales. So, even though I was not meant to be a salesperson, I think that I always thought that my ability to be able to learn sales, especially as an introvert, gave me my edge because I could teach extroverts and I could teach introverts how to sell. And I always thought the reason for all of my business’s success was the ability to be able to teach the salespeople to be unbelievable at what they did. What I learned though by going back and actually teaching others and moving into the coaching, consulting, and speaking realm is that the sales was actually a really small part of it. And now, I’m well known for saying, if you start with sales, you’ve already lost. And the reason for that is what I discovered is that what I was doing naturally was I was crafting a really strong unified and differentiated message, something that would inspire customers to want to know more, as opposed to—and we’ve all been to networking events where you tell somebody I’m a business coach or I sell Microsoft or I do this and people go, oh, you’re a commodity; I’ll put you in that box. And then we have that awkward, oh, that’s nice. And then you feel like you need to say, well, no, no, listen to me and you’re shoving something down someone’s throat, right? Or you let them get away with that and then you say, what do you do? And then you both look for an awkward way to go to the bathroom to get away from each other.

Well, with a strong USP, if you say, for instance, like I’m the rapid growth guy, people don’t know where to put that. Right? If you say you’re the authority architect, people don’t know where to put that. And as a byproduct of that, people will ask you the question, oh, what exactly is that? And now, you get to explain on their invitation. So, it’s using a strong message that gets people to want to know more. Then, understanding the fact that if you speak to everyone, you’re speaking to no one. So, instead of like a lot of new businesses, trying to sell to everyone, and a lot of really big businesses do this as well. They’re trying to sell to everybody as opposed to really niching down because people believe they’re excluding customers if they focus small. What they’re really doing is they’re speaking to those people, if they pick a small niche, in the language, it’s very obvious they understand them better than they know themselves and because of that, their sales go up while still everyone else has got a broad message, so it doesn’t not speak to everyone else. And then the sales system really just makes things easy.

So, what I discovered was by focusing on all three elements, you could create a rapid growth business. And more recently, I’ve worked with a lot of channel partners doing the exact same thing and Microsoft’s a great example. Microsoft is this huge business, has this unbelievable message for itself, but then you’ve got all these channel partners that are selling the product and they’re commodities because you can buy the Microsoft product from 100 different places. What makes each person different? And I’ve done some work with Oracle doing the exact same thing because you’ve got Oracle selling the Oracle product. You’ve got Oracle partners. It’s messy unless everybody has a separate unified message that separates them from everyone else. So, while the product is a really strong proposition, and the Microsoft product’s fantastic, on the other side of the coin, you need a reason for why they buy it from you. And most people think it’s because of the product or because of their great sales, but it’s generally because of the competencies outside the functional skill and the product for the reasons why people gravitate to them and their brand.

Braunstein: So, what are the things that you’d, if you’re working with a small business, and what you’re saying is really how do you differentiate yourself, what are the things you should start looking at first? What does that look like? What are the steps that you can start taking?

Pollard: Yeah, definitely. So, what I would love to do is I want to go through some really practical, tangible steps. But what I always like to do first is just give you a little bit of context about how this applies in the world, just so people can understand it’s not just a cool concept. I think a lot of branding and PR and marketing people they kind of sail these high level concepts and it’s like, oh, so it’s a hard and it’s intangible, and I hate having that happen. So, what I’ll do is I’ll share a story of Wendy and Wendy was a language coach out of California. And she taught kids and adults how to learn Mandarin and she had hundreds of clients, but what she found was she was losing clients due to new people moving into California starting their own Mandarin businesses. And they were teaching, these people were moving in and we all know what it’s like when you start a new business, you’re willing to cut your price to the bone to get your first customers. So, they were willing to charge $30-$40 an hour for private consultation. She was charging $50-$80, so she was losing current clients. She was losing new prospects. It was horrible for her. Then, we now live in a global economy, right? So, she had to deal with people in China offering their services for $10 or $15 on Craigslist.

Braunstein: Right.

Pollard: The business was getting really hard for her. And she said, Matt, how do I compete in this crowded market? And I said, Wendy, that’s a battle to the bottom. Nobody wins. The person that actually wins the client loses because they have to charge so minimally it’s just not worth it for you.

Braunstein: Yeah.

Pollard: So, what I said is we need to avoid the battle completely. And so, what I did is I started looking at the clients that she worked with and what I realized is all the clients she worked with she helped two specific clients with much more than just Mandarin. These were executives being relocated across to China. And she by going through what she did for these people, I discovered she did three amazing things. The first thing is she helped them understand the concept of galaxy. Now, for us in the U.S. or Australia or even the U.K., that sounds like outer space, right?

Braunstein: Yes, that’s the first thing I think of.

Pollard: Exactly. So, the thing in China, that’s their version for rapport. So, while we’re in the Western world, I’ll sit down and I might have a meeting with you. If I’m trying to sell you something, I’m going to say okay, at the end of it, do you want to work with me? If I’m a bad salesperson, that’s probably what I would say. Now, you then have to make a decision. And if you say the common response, let me think about it, then I’ll probably say, cool, I’ll call you back in a week. If I call you back in a week and you still say you want to think about it, well, my chances of getting that sale, they’re going down and down, right? Well, in China, they probably want to meet with you over dinner five or six times before they even speak business. They’re probably going to want to see you drunk over karaoke once or twice. And the more important thing about that is because they’re not taking transactional deals. They’re not talking about 12 and 24 month contracts. They’re talking 50 to 100 year deals. For a lot of people, it’s longer than a lot of people’s lifetimes. So, it’s so important they know who they’re getting into business with. Now, if people don’t understand that, they’re not doing business in China. Secondly, she helped them understand the difference between e-commerce in China and e-commerce in the Western world. And the third is she helped them understand the importance of respect. So, she helped them understand that it wasn’t enough to learn the language. She had to actually help them reduce their accent. Same as in China. If somebody hands you a business card, in the Western world, we grab it, we throw it in our pocket. We’re all at South by. We collect all these business cards and we get home and we’re like, who is that person again? Who is that person? Well, in China, you have to hold it, cherish it, look at it, turn it over, appreciate the back, and then put it in your card case. Anything less than that, it’s disrespectful. And I said, Wendy, you’re doing so much to help these people, what are you doing? And she said, what do you mean, Matt? I’m just trying to help. I’m focusing on Mandarin, but I’m just helping with these things. I said, is it fair to assume you’re stuck in your functional skill? And that’s what most people that are listening today will probably be doing. They’re focusing on the product. They’re focusing on the specific things in the implementation that they do. And they say, our service is what differentiates us. It’s not generally that; everybody has unique experiences, unique upbringings. The founders of these companies all have reasons for why they started in the business for themselves.

So, what I said to Wendy is you’re stuck in your functional skill. Is it fair to assume as a result of the help that you’re giving these people you’re actually helping these people become more successful in China? And she said, yeah, I hope so. I said, great. So, why wouldn’t we call you the China Success Coach? Why wouldn’t we call a product of yours the China Success Intensive? Forget about Mandarin because Mandarin is that thing that you do that it’s a commoditized thing. But if you focus on these three core elements, these are the reasons why your customers buy from you, then we can really start to do something with our business. Now, what we did is we crafted a five-week program with the executives, the spouse, and any children being relocated to China. Now, why the spouse and the children? Well, we’re in business, so selling to more people makes more money, but secondly think about it. If your spouse and children are coming with you and they’re not doing well in China, you’re going to be constantly called home to deal with things and that means your chance of success is lower and lower. So, the idea of the whole family unit being successful was so important.

So, she started saying, then who are my customers? Because do I go to the executive? I said, no, you don’t go to the executive because they’re not the ones paying. The corporates are paying the bill, right? Do I go to the corporates? Well, no, because your ideal customer is going somewhere already. They’re going to an immigration attorney. So, we reached out to a group of immigration attorneys that generally charge $3,000-$5,000. I mean when I did my visa, it was like $3,000. When I did my green card, it was a fair bit more than that. And these people already had that relationship. So, we said, how would you like to make a $3,000 commission for any successful introduction to an executive being relocated to China? And they went, well, that’s fantastic. What would I need to say? I mean, that’s more profit than they make after doing all the paperwork. So, what we did was we had a relationship with them where all they had to do was say, congratulations, you’ve now got your visa. Now, I just need to double check, are you as ready as you could be to be relocated across to China? So, they would say, yeah. We understand the language. We’re getting pretty good at it. The kids are too. We’ve got our house organized. We’ve got our visa. I’d say, we’re good. And they’d say, no, there was a lot more to it than that. You need to speak to the China Success Coach. Wendy would have the easiest sale in the world. Because they were terrified. I mean I moved to America; I was terrified about moving here. Imagine being relocated to another place that doesn’t even speak the same language. The corporate was terrified because they had so much riding on that executive. So, Wendy got to charge $30,000 for this program. It was a five-week program and she paid a $3,000 commission. So, she made $27,000 for the easiest sell in the world instead of struggling every single day to fight for $50-$80 an hour. That’s the power of a strong and unified message. So for Wendy, what she looked at is what her strong differentiators were and it was galaxy, e-commerce, and respect. The higher level benefit of that became China success. For me, I’m a business coach. I’m a branding expert. I’m a sales strategist, social media strategist. I’m certainly things nobody cares, right? The high level benefit though, if I say I’m the rapid growth guy, I help organizations large and small obtain rapid growth, the power of that market gets me heard in a crowded market. So, that’s why we’re doing it. The next thing is really how do we go about doing it?

So, what I did is I crafted like a very simple five-step process, really just to help people get it down on paper because a lot of times, it’s really about asking the right questions and you have all the answers in your head. So, I suggestion—and I did this at the National Freelance Conference recently and there was over 100 people in that conventional hall. Actually, I think it was 200 and it was like 97% at the end of that said they had a strong message they could finally use with customers. The sad thing is over 80% of people had spent more time in that session when I asked them to keep their hands up if this was the most time they’ve ever spent on marketing, they kept their hands up. That’s horrible. We just don’t spend the time on this. So, what I would suggest is actually block out on your calendar, 2-3 hours to do this task. And the first thing I want you to do is get out a piece of paper and write down a list of all the things that you do, sorry, write down a list of all of the customers that you work with that absolutely sing your praises. You know, the person, if I was to meet them and ask them who should I go to for this service, it’s like they play your sales rep. If you asked them for a testimonial, you ask them for a two-line testimonial, they’ll write you a page. If you ask them for a video interview, they’ll drone on for an hour. These are the people that you get unbelievable results for that sing your praises. So, write a list of all those people’s names down.

The second thing I want you to do is write a separate list of all the people that you make unbelievable money with. Now, these are the people when the phone rings, you’re like cha-ching. I’m going to get paid today. Right? As a salesperson or anyone in business, we know who those people are. They’re the people who don’t question on price. They just want to get the job done and they trust us enough that it’s going to be worth whatever we charge. So now, we’ve got these two lists. What you’ll start to notice is there some similarities between some of these lists. You may have even noticed that some of them could kind of fit on both lists. So, what you start to do is put these names into groups and that’s what we really call customer segments. Now, for a lot of big corporates, they do all this big data research and all these plots. And unless you’ve got a couple of million dollars, you’re just not doing it that way. This works unbelievably well. What you want to do is create these groups of the names of people that have those similarities. It might be anything from the type of relationship you have with them, to the things you have in common, to the specific things like Wendy that she was helping them with.

Then what you do is you grab out a red and a blue pen. Now, these color pens don’t work specifically well. Just any color pens, they just tend to be the ones that you have on your desk. And circle in blue all the people that you get unbelievable results for, the people that sing your praises, all the groups. Then with the red pen, I want you to circle all the people you make unbelievable money with. Now, what you’ll find is there’ll be some groups that have both a blue and a red circle around them. And no matter how many groups I’ve worked with, there’s always been at least one, but some people have multiples. Now, if you don’t know and I’m going to tell you, you only get to pick one of these because your focus needs to be on just one. So, in neuro-linguistic programming, we learn we’re presented with two million bits of information every single second. Our brain, the supercomputer that it is, processes only 126. So, in short, we delete, distort, and generalize everything we see, feel, hear, and touch based on our beliefs, values, past experiences. And the subset of that is our goals. So, in short, if we’ve got multiple focuses, that 126 is split in multiple directions. We’re going to miss opportunities right there in front of us. So, just pick one. Now, if you’re struggling to pick which one, generally, it’s a lack of goal alignment or an understanding about what your why is. What you’ll notice is that I’m talking a lot about personal branding. Now, this works for product based branding as well. Because you look at Facebook, you look at Microsoft. Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates, strong corporate brands still have high level people at the top that have their why statements that drove the business because people buy from people these days. They buy from corporations is a secondary thought. Now, if you don’t know which one of those you gravitate to, what that means is you’re out of alignment with your why. Simon Sinek talks about start with why. If you don’t know your why, you can’t pick which one of those groups. If you did, you’d know it 100%.

Now, we talked about my podcast before. If you do struggle with that, go to Better Business Coach Podcast, Episode 17. It’s called Forget About Goals—Why is the Key to Success. If you listen to that podcast, by the end of it, you’ll know exactly which one of those will work for you. Once you’ve picked that, then of that group, you say, what is it that I do above and beyond that helps this group of people? For Wendy, as I said, it was China success. It was respect. And it was e-commerce. For you, it could be a number of different things outside the scope of your functional skill. Once you have that list, then you ask yourself the question what is the higher level benefit of that? For Wendy, it was China success. She was helping these executives become successful in China. For me, it’s rapid growth. I had the competency to bring sales, marketing, branding, PR, all social media, all into one place that has a unique combination that creates the whole holistic elements of growth. So, I call myself the Rapid Growth Guy. You need to ask yourself what is the higher level benefit of the things outside the scope of the functional skill that you provide? And you do have something. Everybody has unique experiences, unique customers they’ve had in the past, unique upbringings that give them the opportunity to help one certain demographic better than anybody else in a way that their customers will be much more willing to pay you what you’re worth than the price war that they’re experiencing right now with everything that they do.

Braunstein: Did you all get that? That was pretty good. That was awesome, Matt. That’s really tangible advice.

So, some of what you’ve been talking about is really big corporations but small businesses. And I know you work with a lot of small businesses and how they should go after small business customers. And that’s why you started the Small Business Festival here in Austin that is also fully expanding into Australia, which is really exciting. Can you talk about why you created that and what are the objectives and why you think that you need something specific for small businesses versus any other kind of company out there?

Pollard: Yeah, definitely. I think small business, while it’s been around for a long time, more and more people keep jumping into that. And what I find is we have this word entrepreneurship, but that applies to people in the tech world. It doesn’t really apply to the dry cleaner and the electrician that just wants to run their own small business. So, the reason why I picked small business is the name for me to focus on is because I wanted to make sure that it included tech, but it didn’t exclude or make anyone else feel disenfranchised. Now, the reason why I started the Small Business Festival was, well, I mean I grew up in an area where I would watch two people save up and then start a business and then not know the things outside their functional skill. They’d go broke and then I would watch my friends have to get relocated from their mother to their father’s house from time to time because their family had broken up because of the financial stress. So, small business for me has always been one of those strong motivators. I’m a big fan of the person that wants to go out and take the risk to start something of their own. But what I noticed is I was lucky. I learned from YouTube and then I fell into business and I had some of the skillsets that made that possible. And, again, what I noticed with a lot of other people is they focused on I’m a great copywriter or I’m a great salesperson, so I’ll start a sales business and the same thing happens. Even if you’re a great salesperson, you may not have the branding experience. You may not have the business experience to create a successful business.

So, what I wanted to do is I wanted to create a forum for a collaboration for all of small business. And at my last business, we had 3,500 business owner students all working together and we created it like a mastermind, where all 20 business owners would be in the same with a business coach leading it. They’d all be in the same class. Now, the amazing results we’d have of the electrician giving the always firm a piece of advice or the big retail store getting advice off the local hairdresser, right? The amount of exchange of information just by getting people into that place of collaboration, what I’ve found is that these people didn’t need to spend money for expensive coaching. What they needed to do was get out and speak to other small businesses. And we all know what it feels like to be isolated as a small business owner. So, the major driver for me was give them a place of collaboration and create locations where they could come out of their isolation and be around a community of like minded people. I mean work’s really hard for us. A lot of people have jobs and when we say business isn’t going so well, they’re like, go back and get a safe job. We don’t want to hear that. We want to know the strategies to be successful.

So, what we did is we created Small Business Festival with the idea that we wanted to celebrate success stories, right? We see a lot of people speak on stage. They get up, they’re unbelievable speakers. They’re highly motivated, but they’ve never really done it themselves. So, what we wanted to do was create a place where we celebrated the success stories of the people that started small and grew big. We then wanted to help by giving real practical nuts and bolts skills. So, we wanted to educate small businesses to understand that the reason why they’re not successful is because they don’t know these things outside the scope of their functional skill and make sure that they see those as possibilities for them that now their business can be successful. And then the third concept was really about inspiring them. So, really, help them understand, you know, for some people that were looking at going into small business, make them believe that it was possible for them. Where on the other side, a lot of people in their own businesses now started to feel a little bit disgruntled because it’s not working. So, help them understand that it wasn’t their fault; they were fixated on their skillsets and making their functional skill better when they needed to focus on the other elements of the business, so re-inspiring them back into small business.

So, last year we started this. The goal was to start it small. Well, it didn’t happen that way. We ended up having people like Jim Cathcart, the number one speaker in the world, speak on our stage. Ryan Dice, I think it’s probably the number one person for teaching people how to make money on the internet on the internet. We had Jason Cohen, the Founder of WP Engine. We ended up with 70 speakers. We ran over 50 locations and we had 1,200 people experience the festival last year.

This year, we are growing into, well, we’re in Austin, Texas. We’re in San Antonio. We’re in Buffalo, New York. We’re in Sacramento. We’re going to be in Sydney, Australia as well in November. But during the first week of May, we’re also livestreaming out to over 100 locations, where people can come and experience the content. So not only is there free events all over America, but also they can access the premium content without having to buy a ticket. They just hop onto SBFlive.com and they can experience it from their tablet, PC, at home. But if there is a viewing location around you, I’d really challenge you to go to that because the big thing for me is collaborating with other business owners and getting out of your isolation.

Braunstein: And those are happening at a lot of Microsoft retail stores, right?

Pollard: That’s 100% correct and we’re excited to say that Microsoft has—and I’m not sure a lot of people know this— so, I’d love everybody to share the word, but Microsoft beyond the big wall of the Microsoft Store, there’s this whole training center in the back of that and what we looked at is we were looking at a way of creating a place where all small businesses could go, like a safe place for small business where they could really learn and experience the SBF content. And the Microsoft Store was just a perfect fit for us. They’ve got I think over 100 locations globally but over 90 in the U.S. So because of that, what we’re going to be doing is we’re going to be driving people from all over America into those Microsoft Stores so that they can all experience the content. There’ll be some brown bag lunch activities around that. And it’s just going to be an experience where you can access some great free content, get out of your isolation, meet some other business owners, and just really create that opportunity for you to find somebody that you can become friends with perhaps that pushes along and creates that accountability partner focus. And that for us, Microsoft has allowed us to do that, so we’re very grateful.

Braunstein: Thank you so much, Matt. If you had one thing for our partners—there’s so many of them—and many of them are small businesses, what would be your biggest recommendation coming from this podcast?

Pollard: Yeah, definitely. So, I think one of the most important things for anyone going through this process is it’s uncomfortable. We have our functional skill and stepping out that is really difficult. So, I’m a big fan of time blocking and I always suggest that most people spend so much time in the day to day, they go, oh, this sounds great. That’s so motivating. I’ll run out and I’ll do that and then they put the notes that they took on the desk and they never do this. So, what I would challenge everyone to do right now is block out three hours in their calendar, where they will actually go through this exercise. Now, I know we ran through it very, very quickly, so I’ve got a whole document. If you go to matthewpollard.com/growth, you can download that full five-step process with a lot more explanation on how to go through those steps. But I would challenge people just to block out that three hours and get the work done. Because what I would suggest is it really doesn’t need to be, I mean a lot of people think they need to hire this massive branding consultant. They really don’t. A lot of times, you know, a lot of people have downloaded that worksheet and I’ve got testimonials everywhere that say they applied that worksheet and they’ve doubled the size of their business within the space of just a few weeks or a few months. So, it’s really about just locking in that time. Robert Kiyosaki’s well known for saying, that most entrepreneurs, the reason why they won’t be successful is because they won’t move forward until they see all the lights are green along the way. What I would suggest is you’re going to see lots of red lights, especially when you’re doing something like this that’s uncomfortable. Block out the time and just work through the process. Your business will be better forever because of it.

Braunstein: Thank you, Matthew. Check back on the rest of our podcast episodes. Talk to you soon.

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