Breaking Through The £100,000 Plateau

Is your business hitting the revenue ceiling? Strategist Joshua Long explains how to smash through the barriers and increase turnover

Breaking Through The £100,000 Plateau

Working with business owners, I’ve spent the last seven years helping them unlock new growth in their businesses. One pattern that I’ve seen time and time again is that many businesses get stuck at very predictable revenue levels. On the journey to £1m in turnover, the big plateaus many get stuck at are £100,000 and £500,000.

Although each plateau presents different challenges, the good news is that the challenges at each one tend to be quite predictable. In this article I’m going to talk about the most common challenges that business owners experience as they approach the £100,000 mark, and, most importantly, how you can overcome or avoid them to quickly break through that revenue level.

Keep It Simple

As a business owner it is very easy to get overwhelmed by the seemingly endless list of things to do to grow your business. Look at the amount of advertising options out there today – Google, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, to name a few. And then there’s Webinars, SEO… the list goes on. At this stage, you shouldn’t be giving these things any thought. All they’ll do at is act as huge distractions. You can add them later.

The only two things you should be focusing on

1. Make your product or service really easy to buy

As visionaries, most entrepreneurs suffer from grandiose ideas, overcomplicating their business unnecessarily. By focusing on making your product or service as easy to buy as possible, results in simplification. Your offer is what drives everything out of the gate.

You should have a really strong pitch that explains exactly what you do in no more than two sentences. Remove as many words as possible from your pitch to boil it down to the essentials. If you’re not there yet, keep working on it. These two sentences should pique someone’s curiosity. You know you’re on the right lines if their immediate response is “Tell me more.”

Another way you can make your product or service really easy to buy is by reducing the buyer’s risk. One of the best ways to do this is by adding some kind of money back guarantee. I bet there have been a few occasions when you’ve been “on the fence” about buying a new product or service, and it was the guarantee that pushed you over the edge and made you buy.

People aren’t just worried about wasting or losing their money, they’re also worried about wasting their time and energy and often feel like that risk is even higher when they work with a smaller provider. Payment flexibility is another effective way to remove barriers to sales. Can you offer a payment plan that fits their budget, or create get-out clauses so that they can easily cancel, should they choose to?

Finally, you should give them two options to buy:

1. The Rolls Royce version – Your full solution.

2.  A piece of the Rolls Royce – This gives them vision of what the project could grow into in the future.

2. Focus on the easiest path to new clients

With all the ways to get in front of prospects available today, it’s very easy to chase the latest fad, or try to copy the big competitor in your market. Complexity kills businesses here, too. The quickest win is to speak to the people that have previously showed interest in working with you, but for whatever reason did not end up working with you. This could be because they felt overwhelmed by your complex offering!

The next step is to speak to your current clients. With the right approach, they can be one of your biggest sources of new business. I recommend that these conversations concentrate on two key areas – how they heard about you and why they started working with you. These conversations are also a great opportunity to ask for referrals.

My final tip here is to find complementary businesses you can align with. They work with the same type of customers as you but are not competitors.

Here are a couple of examples just to get your brainstorm going: If you’re an estate agent selling high end properties, can you partner with a law firm that specialises in property? If you’re a graphic designer, can you partner with digital agencies that don’t have that capacity in-house but have clients who require that service and are happy to pass that work to you?

Remember, these partnerships should work both ways so that both partners benefit. There are partners out there who already have your clients and would love to give you business. You just need to talk to them.

Start by working on this an hour a week, then work towards one hour a day. Within three months you can easily double your income. And if you don’t like the more ‘traditional’ forms of selling, such as cold calling, these methods are easier and less stressful ways to get clients. Even if you’re uncomfortable with selling, this is part of your job as a solopreneur that wants their business to grow.


Joshua Long is the founder and head strategist of Bottleneck Breakthrough Group, who help businesses with £5m+ turnover to grow their revenue by removing their key bottlenecks. To find out more about Bottleneck Breakthrough Group and how you can benefit from their approach, visit BottleneckBreakthrough.com.

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