Creating an Exit Plan For Your Business
Back in the 90's, a copywriter started freelancing.
As time went by, he decided to focus on a niche – dentists. He not only wrote copy for them, but consulted as well, developing marketing strategies and “done-for-you” materials they could purchase and use. He also created a monthly newsletter, where his clients paid him monthly for access.
In doing so, his practice became a real business.
After a few years, he expanded into coaching, focusing on masterminds with other business owners. It started small, but slowly grew as his clients started to see incredible results from his training. They became evangelists, and some even wanted to join the company, themselves.
Enter the 2000s, and he's created a partnership with one of his top clients. They developed multiple products, have different levels of memberships, events, and many channels of income. Business is going great.
Fast forward to present day, where this copywriter turned expert business owner sold this business for many millions of dollars, while still retaining royalties and rights to his name and his products. He has freedom and income, doing what he loves when he wants, and commanding a huge price for it.
Not bad for 20 years of work, right?
Have any idea who this business owner is? It's none other than Dan Kennedy, of GKIC (Glazer-Kennedy Insider Circle) fame; an Expertpreneur® just like yourself.
Dan had the foresight when he started out, to create a business that could be taken over when the time was right. He loved what he did, but specifically designed a business model that ran on its own so potential buyers could easily take it over one day.
Letting him move on when he was ready.
And you can do this too. You are an Expertpreneur®, and if you've been following my blog posts, newsletters, and magazine articles, you are learning valuable skills that could set you up to follow in Dan's footsteps.
As an Expertpreneur®, I've done it with my own businesses.
So today I'm going to show you how to design your business from day one, avoiding the time for money trap, and positioning you to “exit”… to sell your business.. when you are ready to retire, or move on to a new business venture.
You'll learn the importance of continuity, and how much money it can earn you…
How to turn your best clients into something more…
And what your life could be like, even after you “retire”, if you play your cards right…
Earning While You Sleep
By now, you are no stranger to passive income.
Money rolling into your bank account from work you did once, and only have to maintain for a few hours each month. It's the dream scenario, and the cornerstone of any good business.
And it can mean huge value when you're ready to “get out.”
You see, when investors look into companies to buy, they look at the annual revenue first. Naturally, they want to see a high number. But there's another element at play.
They want to see how much of that revenue is “continuous”. In other words, how much of it comes from monthly subscriptions, membership fees, or any other “automatic” payment from the customer.
A large number of passive revenue streams means less work for the investor when they purchase the business. If people are plugged into your system and getting charged automatically every month, there's not much extra effort needed to maintain what you've created.
And that means big bucks for you.
Typically investors will offer 5x the annual revenue of a business. So, if you pull in $1,000,000 a year, they will pay you $5,000,000. Pretty nice, right?
If your name and image is tied to the business, you can make even better arrangements. But, I'll get to that a little bit later.
This is why you want to focus on developing products, newsletters, and subscriptions that have “stick value”. Basically, they require clients to give a credit card number and pay a monthly fee. And when they like what they're receiving very much, few ever quit or cancel.
For my first business as a trainer, I developed multiple income streams, both passive and active. There were live events, informational products, VIP events (which introduces tiers to your products and subscriptions), and even mastermind groups.
Granted, I worked up to having a large number of products, services, and events. I would not recommend trying to do all of that at once.
However, as an Expertpreneur®, it's easy to fall into the trading face-time for money trap. After all, only seeing your clients face-to-face, or getting on the phone one-to-one, constitutes real “coaching” right?
Not true. There are many options, such as newsletters, courses, group sessions, etc… that allow clients to work with you according to their level of need. These choices give you peace of mind as a business owner (if one runs dry, there's still income coming from other places), and let you reach more clients at once.
So as you develop your business, think about ways to create passive income. Doing so will position you for success when you are ready to retire, or move on in business.
Giving Responsibility to Your Clients
Loyal clients are the most rewarding aspect of our line of work.
As Expertpreneurs®, we get to watch people transform through our coaching, and live dreams they always thought were impossible. It's deeply satisfying.
But did you ever stop to think about how these clients might contribute to your business, aside from just buying from you?
One of the ways Dan Kennedy was able to grow his business was by partnering with Bill Glazer. He was a businessman in the retail world, and grew through Dan's coaching to become a VIP client. Eventually, he wanted to be a part of the company.
And he's not the only one. Internet Marketing legend Corey Rudl, Russell Brunson, Ryan Deiss… they all started as clients and became contributors and Expertpreneurs®.
It is not only deeply satisfying as a teacher to see your students thrive so much they become instructors themselves… But it also is a good business practice.
Suddenly Dan is spreading the wings of his business without actually putting in the hours himself. He's allowing others to do it for him, while reaping the rewards.
I did the same thing with my training business and human resource consulting businesses; I hired a pool of instructors and consultants to go out and do the leg work, while I spent my time focusing on high-value skills like sales, marketing, and strategy. It allowed me to grow my business without falling into the time vs. money trap.
You can have this, too. You'd be surprised by how many successful clients end up wanting to go into your line of work. I can think of a large number of people who had great life coaches and became great life coaches.
They could be working for you.
The “R” Word
It's no mystery that retirement is a touchy subject nowadays.
In the states, there are issues with social security and financial planning, here in Canada the economy is sputtering along. The global economy is suffering. The list of problems goes on and on.
As an Expertpreneur®, you've already broken away from the herd to live a prosperous life on your own terms. You have time, freedom, and the ability to pursue your dreams.
And if you design your business well, you can retire in the same way.
You see, Dan Kennedy got a huge chunk of money when he decided to sell GKIC. But that wasn't all…
Because he had such a lucrative business, with multiple successful products and streams of income, that was so heavily tied to his name, he had a lot of leverage. And negotiated an absolutely incredible deal when he left.
Basically, he retained the rights to all of his products, created a royalties deal, and still contributed to his monthly newsletter and coached the highest-level mastermind groups. Because he wanted to.
Not to mention he still consults with business for $18,800 a day.
All that enabled him to pull out on his terms. He wanted to stay involved to a certain extent, so he did. But he's still making incredible amounts of money on the work he put in for over 20 years. And if he didn't want to do anything, he would be fine.
A retirement anyone could envy.
Now, you can choose to design your business without your face attached, like my Expert Elevation business. Especially, if you wish to exit without worrying about the repercussions.
But understand that being connected like Dan, can mean a lot of leverage for you down the road. Some Expertpreneurs® – myself included – love what they do so much, they never want to stop.
And that could be your ticket to staying in the game, even when you don't want to run the whole thing anymore.
A Graceful Exit
When you treat your Expertpreneur® business as a true business, and not just a practice, your whole life will change for the better.
You'll reach more clients, you'll make more money, and you'll still have time to do the things you love. Travel, family, fun – they don't have to be sacrificed.
What's more, if you approach it right from the very beginning, you will set yourself up for not just a wonderful ride, but the best retirement you could ask for. Your business will essentially be a “done-for-you” model for someone to pick right up and continue.
And you'll be free to do what you want.
It can be challenging to think so far ahead, especially when you love what you do, and just want to make a living doing that. But I promise you, that taking those extra steps early on will pay you back many times over, years from now.
And as a side note… I am also thrilled to announce that Dan Kennedy will be a special guest in Expertpreneur® Magazine in a coming edition! He will be sharing his incredible story, and tips on how to grow your Expert business just like his. You do not want to miss out on what you can learn from this living legend.