I’ve been in this industry and in this space for about 5 years now and, in that time, I’ve noticed that there is a lot of movement. Now, I don’t mean upward movement — there are tons of people that are leveling up, scaling their businesses, and seeing some big growth. But I what I’m talking about is lateral movement. There are many online entrepreneurs who seem to do a lot of jumping from lane to lane or from one niche to another.
Now I’m not talking about the idea of a pivot. I’ve talked a lot about pivoting in your business and when to know it’s the right time to pivot in your business. It’s totally natural to pivot in your business every few years, that is a part of the journey because, as you take action, you will gain clarity around what the next steps are for you. Naturally, more ideas and opportunities open up, and then you may find yourself leaning into a new thing or pivoting.
But I’m not talking about that today. I’m talking about entrepreneurs who seem to have a totally new niche or be an expert in a totally new thing every 6 months. When they start out, they are like, “I’m a graphic design and branding expert!” Then 6 months later they’re saying, “I’m actually an authority in building your list, list-building is my thing!” and then before you even have time to grasp this new specialty, that same person is shouting: “I’ve got a new course all about Instagram!” And we’re all on the outside looking in, thinking “What the hell is happening?”
How is it possible that in the span of 18 months one person can be the go-to expert in all the things? You don’t have enough time in 18 months to intricately learn about each of those specific areas of business, learn various strategies, practice in that niche for enough time to get your own experience and results, test and tweak those results, and then apply what you learn to prove your methods work. Most likely, people in this boat are just regurgitating surface-level information that they learned from someone else and have no practical knowledge or experience with it. They aren’t able to put their own spin on it because they haven’t had enough time to have a spin!
But let’s dig deeper into what’s really going on here — because I actually don’t think people who do this are intentionally trying to dupe people. I think there is something else going on and, if you have found yourself thinking, “Maybe I should try this lane instead” or “Oooh, that niche has a lot of people doing really well in it, maybe I’ll see if the grass is greener over there”... well, this might help you decide whether it’s a good time to try something new — or if you should stick with what you’ve got. (Probably stick with what you’ve got.)
I think the real issue is impatience. We’ve all been getting these messages for years from our own industry on “How to make 6 figures in 6 months,” or “How to build an empire in less than a year.” We see entrepreneurs who seemingly come out of nowhere suddenly doing 5- and 6-figure launches and we think, “Well there must be something wrong in my business because that’s not happening for me.”
So we think that maybe we need a new offer or a new strategy or to try and become an expert in a different niche or a different area of business. And believe me, I have felt this way SO many times over the past 5 years. But we all know those don’t exist. Deep down, we know that what we see when it comes to someone else’s business is just the tip of the iceberg.
Most people aren’t posting about their so-called failed launches or about how they spent an enormous amount of time over several years building an audience online before they ever launched a thing. People don’t share that stuff. So we start to believe that maybe all those successful people have a fast pass that we don’t know about. They’ve got something that we don’t.
So we change lanes, we switch directions, we go after the shiny new thing because maybe THAT will be the thing that takes off! But we don’t need another shiny thing, or some new strategy, or to try another niche. We just need to be patient.
Growing a business takes time. It just does. And it takes time to become the expert, to become the authority. How are you supposed to be the “go-to” person for XYZ if you’re too busy jumping from lane to lane trying something else? You can’t!
And while we’re on the topic of authority or expert-ness: no one is an absolute expert. It doesn’t matter what you teach or what your offer is about, there is always something new to learn. I consider myself someone who knows a lot about planning a profitable business. I know how to use numbers, metrics, pricing, and launch strategy to grow faster and make more money in less time, but I’m always still learning. I’m always testing and trying new strategies, tactics, and things in my own business (and with my 1-on-1 clients) because that’s how I’m constantly learning and growing and evolving.
So you don’t have to wait some arbitrary number of years or have made X amount of dollars to consider yourself an expert or an authority on something. But you do have to have your own experience and your own spin. And that takes time, it takes practicing your craft and experimenting — and you can’t do either of those things overnight.
I also want to mention that you can know a lot about a lot of things. Part of what makes me a good Integrator and business manager is that I have solid working knowledge in a lot of different areas of business. That allows me to both see the big picture but also dial in on all the details. So while business planning, strategy, pricing, and numbers might be my jam, I also know a lot about marketing funnels, launching, Facebook ads, messaging and positioning, how to build and grow an email list… and more.
But just because I know a lot about all those things doesn’t mean I’m trying to be the go-to for all of them. Because I can’t stand out that way. And neither can you. It takes time to become KNOWN for something, for people to find you, for the word to spread, for people to see your results or the results you get for others. And if you only give it 6 months and then throw up your hands, you’re never gonna get there.
But what people don’t understand is that the reason your course/your products/your services/your brand hasn’t taken off yet is because you haven’t taken the time to grow a big enough audience and you haven’t served them as an expert in your industry or subject matter. So now, if you change lanes and start calling yourself a new kind of expert, you’re basically starting from scratch.
You can go so much further and faster in your business if you have the patience to stay in your lane. Just stay there! You will start to accelerate. You will gain traction as long as you’re consistently taking action. You are on the right road. Keep going.