When Is The Right Time To Add Another Product or Program To Your Business?

About once a day I get an email, Facebook message or text asking me, “When should I add  _________________ to my business?”.


Maybe it’s adding a Health Coaching Practice to your Pilates or yoga studio;  an acupuncture service to your chiropractic practice, or a nutrition program to your functional medicine practice.


Maybe it’s a smaller change.  I want to add Pre-Natal classes to my studio, I want to offer a fascia release technique.  I want to offer a new line of products in my businesses.  It’s totally complimentary, but a new element.


This is a great {and ridiculously important} question with huge potential.  In our businesses we’re always growing and our offerings should reflect that, but for me, the bigger question is “Is this the best time in my business to add ___________?”


I, for one, get bored easily.  A new product, a new service, a new certification…SIGN. ME. UP. TODAY.  The problem is that I can find myself with a shiny, new tool in my businesses arsenal, that’s filled with products that never really maximize their profit potential, while I burn myself out on constant creation and expensive marketing.


This is not a place I ever want you at.


So, let me share how I decide if it’s the right time to add a product to my business:


  1. Do I have enough time to execute this flawlessly?


If you’re trying to offer a major new service without a serious amount of planning, you’re setting yourself up for failure.


It’s not just the time a certification or training takes.  It’s the time away from your current profitable part of your business that it takes.  It’s researching your market, building a client profile, incorporating this into your offerings, and deciding on a final price.  It’s taking the time to become a real expert in this {while running your already busy business}.


For me, this means I book a lot of these types of ideas a year out and I don’t do this every year.  I prize my sanity way too much.


To satisfy the consummate student in me, I dig in deeper to what I’m already building a business in.  So ask yourself this today, “If I dedicate the 40, 50 or 60 hours that this new program will take, and redirect that time into becoming an even greater expert at my current service, what would that do for my business?”.


I think you might be surprised to learn it will satisfy your creative urges, while giving your clients even more of what they want.


  1. How much is this going to cost me?


When I ask this question, I normally get a one-sided answer.  The certification cost $2000.  The marketing will only cost me $350 because I‘ll be emailing clients.  I’m so excited to do this that I’ll feel like I’m on vacation, so it won’t actually take any of my work time.


While these answers are part of the truth, none of them really show you the true coast of adding this to your business.  So let me give you a quick list of what you should calculate:


Certification Cost

Any travel costs related to certification

Any apprenticeship costs related to certification

All print marketing costs {including new cards, flyers, posters, and materials}

All digital marketing costs {including new web pages and Facebook graphics}

How many hours of time you will invest in this certification and the hours to master it MULTIPLIED by your current average hourly rate.

How many hours you will take away from clients MULTIPLIED by your average hourly rate?

How many hours you will take away from your family, free time and white space to make this happen MULTIPLIED by DOUBLE your hourly rate {because this is your most valuable time}.


Now just review this.  There are times in life when we work a little harder to reach the next level.  But, these times can’t be all the time.


Have you left room for downtime in your life?  Have you impacted your financial wellbeing of your business?  Are you putting yourself in unnecessary debt to make this happen?   Is this the time to sacrifice or to release into where your business currently is?


  1. Is my top tier product performing flawlessly and maxing out it’s profits?


If this answer is NO, then your timing is wrong.


So often when our main business isn’t working perfectly, we start searching for another answer to make more money, bring in more clients, keep people excited about our business.


This is the quick fix, that may change our numbers for one month, but does absolutely nothing for our long term.


Before you change, add or build anything, you need to make sure your existing business is thriving.  If not, I promise you’re leaving a lot of money on the table.


Let me give you a great example for our businesses.  We work with lots of athletes, so building an athletic training program was a great idea.  When we offered this the first time, we spent almost $700 on marketing, hours on programming, and our employees time on creating a fantastic program.


We didn’t sell one single package.


I have to admit, I wanted to scrap this program.  I had too many other items doing too well, I felt like I had wasted our money and I had no desire to make a mistake twice.   But, this wasn’t’ the best answer.


Instead, we surveyed everyone who had been interested and learned how they’d heard about the program, what they’d loved about it, and why they hadn’t purchased it.  I quickly learned we hadn’t sold any programs because our times were wrong for the athletes we were targeting, parents were nervous to enroll because coaches hadn’t jumped on board and that our marketing needed to get far more specific.


We re-opened the program three months later, in the Fall of 2014—new times, five coaches fully prepped and marketing that was spot on.  We sold 14 slots and got this program off the ground.


In the Spring, this program expanded to almost 40 kids and in the Summer we jumped to 88 athletes.  This Summer we are projecting just over $63,000 in revenue from our athletic training program.


Are you making this leap because you’re trying to fix  a bigger picture problem in your business?  Or are you making this leap, because your other programs are running so flawlessly that you have more than enough time to build something great?


If you want to dig a little deeper into how to prepare your business for sale {just in case the day comes you are ready!} click here for my Selling Out in One Year checklists and workbooks. Don't be scared by the 19 pages… this is all the steps we took over the last year to sell our business for amazing profits!

Click Here to Download the Workbook

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