How to Grow Your Business Past the First 10k

Many companies think that marketing agencies can help them get to 10K, when in fact marketing companies often provide the most momentum for businesses that have already achieved 10K in sales per month.

If you are one of the businesses that think the first 10K is the hard part and you won’t need an agency once you get there, think again.

It’s important to dispel this myth.

The First 10K: Before and After – What’s the Difference?

1. The Low Hanging Fruit

A company that hasn’t achieved the 10K milestone is most likely leaving low hanging fruit on the tree.

To leverage the brand’s low hanging fruit, companies often tap into:

  • Close connections including family and friends and professional connections
  • Second-degree connections like friends of friends or local organizations

2. Singular Focus vs. Being Everything to Everyone

Laser focused singular attention is much easier to achieve when you’re on your way to 10K per month.

  • Your personal goals are 100% aligned with achieving that level.
  • E-commerce owners might be going to events like trade shows or farmer’s markets.
  • You’re recruiting influencers and find a handful of folks in the community to back your brand.

When that focus is 100% on growing the company, you don’t really need to outsource.

Although consistently achieving 10K is an awesome accomplishment, you’re likely to be growing at a rate that is becoming a bit overwhelming.

The next phase – for the foreseeable future – becomes entirely different.

  • Now, you can’t focus 100% on any one aspect of the business.
  • You’ve got finances, taxes, and hiring to worry about.
  • You find out very quickly that you’re limited in your ability to do everything as well as you hoped.
  • In fact, it’s hard to really feel like you’re even doing one thing as well as you’d like.

3. Something Has to Give

After 10K, the need to outsource your marketing efforts becomes apparent. Whatever your leadership team – or in most cases the founder – is focused on is going to be amplified. Other areas tend to suffer.

  • If the founder is focused on sales in the first quarter, the marketing suffers.  
  • You focus on getting marketing back up during the next quarter. Then you notice sales declining.

Why 10K is an Interesting Number

Most founders are hoping to take 10K per month home at some point.

For that to happen, your business really needs to be making more like 120K per month on a consistent basis. It certainly takes time to get that kind of momentum going.

When you really think about all the costs that go into running your business, you’re going to need help figuring out how to make more to have more to go around.

Sounds brutal, but once you get to 10K, it’s time to get serious and ask some tough questions:

  • What are you willing to invest to get to the next level?
  • Are you really looking to create a solid ecommerce brand?
  • Do you have that next level mindset that’s required to gain real market share?

What It Means to Have a Next Level Mindset

Once you get to 10K and prove that you can function beyond that point, then the goal is to brand your product so that it becomes the product consumers select and add to their carts.

Many companies that have been reluctant to work with an agency, dip their toes in the water and but do so before they understand the mindset shift required.

Now it’s time to have a long-term focus and understand that if you aren’t seeing sales on the first few days of spending more, it’s not necessarily a bad thing.

  • Especially in the ramp-up period, you are purchasing other things with your ad spend, including website visitors and widespread brand recognition.
  • Having a next level mindset involves patience, a degree of risk tolerance and a long-term focus.

Final Thoughts – Where an Agency Comes In

Getting to 10K is not easy, but it’s the “easier” part.

At some point, ecommerce businesses that try to do everything on their own reach a point of diminishing returns.

  • There is only so much that a local influencer can do for you.
  • There is only so much market share at the farmer’s market.

Have you hit that plateau?

If so, be one of those businesses with a next level mindset. Leverage a marketing agency to help you break through and amplify your reach.

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