Oh to be a fresh-out-the-box OBM. Bright eyed, bushy tailed, and ready to go in all guns blazing to score high-paying clients! I meet many new OBMs who want to accelerate their growth at light speed. They’re dying to work with the bigwigs who will pay them what they want to be making. And they want to dive headfirst into as many retainer agreements as they can fit in their schedule, so they can make a ton of money ASAP!
I’ve witnessed a LOT of new OBMs jump in like this. Whilst that kind of enthusiasm is AMAZING, let me tell you – doing any one of these things is a recipe for total BURNOUT.
When it comes to growing a thriving OBM business, I see a lot of advice going around which is just totally NOT constructive for long-term, sustainable growth…
“Take on as many new clients as you can”…
“Go straight for a retainer!”…
“More clients means more money – what have you got to lose?!”
Here’s the thing – as a new OBM, taking this bad advice and diving in straight at the deep end will only lead to complete overwhelm. You’ll be ready to give up as quickly as you got started… and I really don’t want that for you!
It’s easy to assume that more clients = more money. However, contrary to what you might think, long-term accelerated growth CAN come from taking things steady. Your focus should be on building up the environment that will best facilitate your OBM business growth.
Many new OBMs ask me what the best way is to gain momentum in their biz when they’re first starting out. So I’m here to set the record straight and give you my top 3 tips for fast-tracking your growth as a new OBM. Let’s go!
Work with the right kind of clients.
The first actionable step you can take for accelerated growth as a new OBM is working with the RIGHT kind of clients.
When you’re first starting out as an OBM, you need to score the ideal OBM client who is going to foster your growth. I call these ‘Stepping Stone Clients’. This kind of client doesn’t usually have a big team or need a full on OBM. They’re usually in need of a VA/OBM hybrid.
That doesn’t mean they are a low level business or won’t pay you well. It just means you’re getting your reps in first before moving up to bigger and better when you’re ready. This way you won’t shatter your confidence. Take it steady, and you’ll feel more comfortable and confident in your abilities as an OBM just in time for when the big guns come along.
Utilize strategy sessions.
The second step you should action in order to grow as a new OBM is to utilize strategy sessions.
A strategy session is your chance to really get to grips with who your client is and what their goals/expectations are. In the initial stages of your OBM journey, it’s less about knowing exactly what the client needs, and more about asking questions and listening.
This is a fantastic opportunity to discover if you have good chemistry with the client. And it will help you to identify if they are the right kind of ‘Stepping Stone Client’ that you really need. After all, THESE are the clients you want for accelerated biz growth! It’s win win – you grow in skills and confidence, whilst they grow their revenue.
Once your strategy session is over and you have what you need, then you can take the next step – sell them on a dating project.
Start with dating projects.
So my third and final step for fast-tracking your growth as a new OBM, is to start with dating projects.
A dating project is typically small-scale project you complete for a new client, to figure out if you’re a good fit before moving into a long-term agreement.
Many new OBMs don’t consider the value of dating projects. I get it – you want to dive right in, lock into those retainers, and jump right into full on OBM mode. However, dating projects are an amazing chance to show off your strengths as an OBM and play to them.
Again, this helps with your growth because by weeding out the bad clients from the good, you won’t waste time, energy, or crush your confidence by working with bad clients.
You get to check out the client, see if they are the RIGHT kind of client, and see how the relationship flows before you commit. That way, you’ll have them begging to keep you around!
The wrap up
You can put these 3 really simple, strategic steps into action with each potential OBM client you meet with. Even if it seems counterintuitive! It’s ALL about taking things steady, and not jumping ahead before you’re ready to.
Once you implement these steps, you’ll notice how your confidence grows in leaps and bounds. This steady pace will foster your growth better for the long-haul.
You’ll trust in yourself and your knowledge, knowing that you’ve taken time to thoroughly cover the things which will give you the solid foundations to then take your OBM biz to that next level. And you’ll be charging top OBM rates before you know it!
Now over to you: What helped kickstart your growth as a new OBM? Got tips? Share your pearls of wisdom in the comments!