My business coach made me put together a business plan, and at first I wasn’t excited. I didn’t think the traditional business plan could do much for me, after all, I already had a plan, in my head. But as a writer I should have known the power of writing things down. And as I did I realized my business needed to have a value ladder.
A value ladder is a way to structure your business to appeal to your target audience at different phases of their growth. It gives you a competitive edge because it ensures you have products or services available to continue to serve your clients as they grow with you.
When I was putting together my business plan, I began to see issues with my structure. After all, when it comes to gaining new clients, it’s much easier to keep your current clients and upsell to them, rather than try to gain new clients. Well, if you just have one product or service, and your client takes advantage of it, you have nothing else to offer them once they have gone through the cycle.
Examples of this include books, workshops, coaching packages, websites, and most evergreen products.
You’ll notice that to combat this, many businesses are offering subscription based programs, where you’ll pay a monthly or annual fee for access for the rest of your life or until your cancel.
As a business, this makes a lot of sense because you can determine your revenue by how many subscriptions you sell.
As a customer, this is frustrating, because you don’t want to spend all your funds on multiple subscription services. Let me tell you, those $10 monthly subscription services add up FAST.
However, a value ladder is an excellent way to scale your revenue and ensure you have attractive services for your ideal client no matter what maturity they are at.
Here’s a look at the way I ended up structuring my book publishing and digital marketing.
The Four Worlds Series is my epic fantasy book series, designed so that each book stands alone.
The core books in the series have a similar theme running through each of them which ends in an epic conclusion in the last book. The series releases one new book every 12 months.
So what’s the value in this?
It’s simple, if you like the stories, you’ll buy a new book every year, which is between $5-$15, depending on which version you get.
And if you LOVE it, you’ll share it with your friends, and eventually, as the years go by, the fan base will just grow.
In order for this value ladder to make the big bucks, it needs hundreds of thousands of people buying the books every single year.
My Digital Marketing business has a different value ladder where I don’t have to put in as much work to make more money.
(Yes, I think writing 80,000 – 120,000 word novels every year is much harder than marketing).
So here’s where to start.
Since everyone loves freebies, I do have resources on my site available for download.
Next up is another service priced between $100 – $200
This is the Marketing Coaching Call – it’s a brainstorming session that cost $99 and can be repeated as often as needed. However, it is a very active based revenue stream, so I also offer courses.
Courses are a passive revenue stream which allows me to work hard on content for a month, and focus on ongoing promotion. An example of this includes the How to Plan a Book Launch course.
After that, clients graduate to a higher ticket priced service:
Finally, there are services that require a monthly subscription and start at $350 a month.
Examples of this include Social Media Marketing, Content Management, and Email Marketing.
Then there is my High Ticket Item: Marketing Campaign Management. It’s a ton of value and priced at $1200 a month. This is where I can only accept a few clients a month because it is a higher priced service.
Each level maxes out at a certain number of clients. With each level, it’s designed to meet the price point of each client at each stage they are at. A new client might not go for the $1200 a month price point, but almost everyone has $99 to spend on business, whether it’s tools, accounting, or a 1-hour coaching session.
I’ve been finding it’s important to meet my clients where they are at for their businesses success. And, my most popular offers are my mid-level ticket items. While people do enjoy the lower priced items, they aren’t my most popular at all.
Do you see how a value ladder can help you establish more consistent income for your business? If you’ve already established one, what does it look like?