Hot Seat with Ayelet Marinovich
Again, tell us who you are, what it is that you offer. And then tell us what your core offer is going to be, or is.
Yeah, so I'm Ayelet Marinovich, I run Strength In Words at strengthinwords.com. (clears throat) What do I offer? Gosh, so much. (laughs) Okay, let's read. (laughs) Really, I offer a sort of loving and caring, big sister, best friend, explanation of how your small child develops and what you can do to connect and become a confident caregiver to empower you to become more able to understand who your child is, how your family wants to run itself, and what you want to ... What you're going to do to connect in those tiny moments that you have. Whether you're a stay-at-home parent or a working parent, we have such few moments to really get in there and connect. So I give you the developmental concepts, I break them down and I give you examples of how you can connect with your child through play and within a framework of music.
Okay, great and what you're doing, we're gonna ...
refine that, by the way, we're gonna make that smaller. And the way you're doing this right now is through a membership community right?
A library of resources and then the personal connection people need to kind of make it work, right?
Okay, so, let's look at your market. First of all, brands. What are some of the other businesses, companies, people, or even just styles of support that people are going to get the same kinds of results or to answer the same kinds of questions?
Sure, so because I have a website and I have a podcast and a blog and I provide a lot of free content like that, there are a lot of other mom bloggers and therapy bloggers out there that provide content as well as E-books, right? So, books on development, books on parenting philosophies, the sort of how-to instructional guide, the basic, the books.
Okay cool, so we've got, let's put other moms, even though they're mom bloggers, but still, let's kind of ... Other moms. We've got therapists
And other educational people.
All right, let's call them professionals. And then we've got books.
And some of those other moms, and therapists, professionals are writing books.
Okay, cool. And so this is, your kind of, this is all content?
Yeah, at this point.
Right, but that's just one. (laughs)
Oh, that's just one! You've got a lot of market to analyze, yes?
I feel like I do.
Okay, so that's good. So this is all content, what else do you have?
There's also, there are consultants, who are sort of, people providing sort of a how-to guide, how to fit into the mold of, say, the Montessori philosophy, how to make your parenting in your home into a Montessori or a RIE or such and such philosophy.
And how do they do that?
Through seminars, courses, or sort of one-to-one consulting.
Okay, gotcha. So this is sort of like let's call it a workshop model for now.
I don't know why I can't spell workshop today, but... (laughter) Alright, we got consultants, sort of a workshop model. What else?
We've got a couple of apps. There are two apps that I can think of that provide sort-of, developmental milestone and activity ideas to help guide you.
Okay, anything else?
Any other areas?
Yes, one more. (laughing) Just one. Which is a live class, sort of class-based music program, that takes a lot from early developmental models and things.
Okay, gotcha. Alright, and so then yours is a membership library?
Okay, this is a great example for everyone who is paying attention because there is a lot of variety here. There's a lot of variety in level of education of the people offering content. There's a lot of variety in the way the service or the results is delivered. I know there's gonna be a lot of variety in price. And there's kind of a lot of variety in modality here as well, the ways people are teaching to a similar kind of question or problem or goal.
This is exactly the kind of way you want to start off a market analysis, so good on you for that. This is excellent. The number one problem people run into when they're doing market analysis like this is just kind of looking too narrowly at what their competition is. And so you've just given us a great example of what it looks like to actually look broad.
I've been listening to you, Tara. (laughs)
Thank you, I appreciate that. I mean, the one other thing I can think of that I might include in here too is that since we've kind of labeled these all as content, like actual therapy is probably, all the different forms of child therapy or parent therapy, would be another option that we could throw in here as well. I think we've got enough to work with. (laughs) But this is great. Okay, let's talk about price. How does price vary with all of these different options?
Okay so, I mean, books and E-books, probably the one... One dollar sign. (laughs)
One dollar sign, yes.
Apps, definitely probably the one. And then I would put, I guess, the music class probably at a two or a three. And I think part of what sort of confuses me that you were talking about, your Co-Commercial member site. I mean, yes, it's definitely like per-month it's super... But it does add up. So, like for instance, a music class is, you know, semester based or session, seasonal based. So the one group of classes might be two, but the fact that you might wanna go back and back, it becomes into a three. How do you account for that, really?
I would say, at this point, I wouldn't worry about it. Because we're thinking about initial investments. You and I could talk, all of us could talk, we could talk about this at some point. Like, how you position price in terms of what people's actual investment is and how they think about what that price really is. Because yes, selling a membership site is, even though the individual investment on any given month is very small, subscriptions actually have a lot of weight behind them in terms of price. So yes, that's a tricky conversation to have. I think in terms of market analysis, it's not something we need to worry too much about right now.
Yeah, so, I'm assuming... So we've got probably a one here. This is probably gonna be one of your more expensive...
Yeah, that would probably be a three.
A three, and so some of this other mom content is actually gonna be free, right? And then if we do think about this more as therapists that you would hire for therapy type services, this is real pricey, right? Again, and so this gives us a great variety in terms of your market of all the things people are considering and all the things, maybe, they're kind of picking and choosing from. They're reading a book, they're using an app, and they're taking their kid to music class, right? And so we really start to see what all the different options are. Let's take a look at the kind of customer you've got then. So, who is this other moms segment of the market? What kind of parents are they really appealing to?
So, I mean, I kind of think those other moms who are writing about early development and connecting with your child are bloggers. So they're appealing to a very, very wide variety. And people who want to just pick up an article that maybe was in their Facebook newsfeed. Something that sounds catchy, like, "Top Five Ways to Connect With Your Child" or whatever.
Yes, we might call these guys dabblers or questioners. What about therapists?
Therapists go deeper, for sure, are providing specific solutions. Yeah, solution-based I guess. And teaching about the developmental concepts.
Yeah, I wonder too if people are using, this isn't a casual purchase. This is something when you've got a really, you've got a very particular problem, and you're looking for a very particular solution, that's when you're going to invest more heavily and go for that very professional kind of solution. What about books?
Big variety there as well, but I think... You called the book reader people the thinkers?
I did, yeah.
For sure, and I like that. Those are people who, they've decided they wanna spend their time sitting down whether it's on the toilet on their Kindle or iPhone, because let's face it, that's when moms are reading, or after the child has gone to bed and they're actually looking at a book. But they've committed to learning. They wanna sit down and read through chapters and chapters. Or at least think that they want to. Even if they don't actually have the time.
Yeah, I would think books also give them an opportunity to kind of look at a variety of different potential solutions too. They're not going down the rabbit hole of one particular thing. They're trying to figure out what their style is going to be. And so that's definitely in the thinkers. Let's take the music class next. We're not gonna have time to do all of these, but what kind of parent is taking, what type of customer is the music class customer?
Sure, so definitely actively involved parents. Maybe someone who has a flexible schedule. Or who's paying for their caregiver, their nanny perhaps, to take the child. But someone who definitely thinks that its important to take their child to, really an expert who is a teacher, to teach them about music or how to connect with music or just to engage their child.
And so thinking about the different types of customers or customer segments, customer mindsets, that are addressed here, what do you think is your opportunity in terms of that membership library? What is that customer that's not quite being served right yet, or well?
So, what my, 'cause I have done sort of those ask campaigns with my audience. What people are saying is that, you know, number one, there's parenting advice everywhere. And it's hard to figure out who to trust. They want tools for connection without all the bells and whistles. Without spending a lot of money on toys. They feel isolated and they're trying to balance the limited amount of time that they have with things that have to get done and things to connect with their child.
Okay, great. So they're looking for dependability.
High quality information.
High quality, and they're feeling isolated. That's a great one.
And they want simple, sort of bite-sized solutions that can really...
Okay, great. I wonder too if, like, all-in-one is a part of this too? Because this does feel like something you probably do kind of piecemeal, whereas there seems like there's a real opportunity here to say okay, we've taken all of the resources that you're going to all of these different places for and we're putting it all in one place for you. But in a not overwhelming way.
Well, that's always the trick, isn't it? (laughing)
Yes, we can talk about that too. Cool, so that gives you a start on that piece of the puzzle. Style-wise, we've talked about pretty well at this point. And that goes through the all-in-one piece. Music class, that is a style. Books, that is a style. So I think we've got that piece. We won't spend too much time there. The next piece is availability. How is the stuff sold? How are people accessing it? Here, other moms, you mentioned Facebook. The availability is Facebook most likely. (laughs) It might be Instagram too. It's social in general.
Pinterest, yes. I'll write that one down too. How are people finding or deciding on therapists or other professionals?
That might be more, sort of, word of mouth and local, maybe even through medical providers.
Books, how are they finding out about the books they wanna read?
Definitely word of mouth. Other moms, recommendations.
Maybe they're finding them from these other moms. (laughs)
Yeah, right? And through things like Podcasts as well. Yeah, those other moms.
Okay, great. Where are they finding out about the music class?
Also word of mouth. And maybe through sort of local websites about what parents can do in this area.
Yeah, I was thinking like community newsletters, that kind of thing. I know there was a music class like this at the college that I went to, for little kids? That's probably another availability piece here as well. Maybe something that's not available to everyone. I think that's probably, this is the first place we've kind of seen this. It's like, this might be a great option for you, but what if you don't have access to that kind of thing?
Yeah, because of time or money or...
Yeah, or just, it's not in your area.
Okay, so we've got some variety here. Lots of word of mouth. I mean, even really social is word of mouth as well. What do you think is the opportunity in terms of availability for your membership library?
So, with a lot of those other things like with the music class, which is the, sort of, least available, the membership library puts it in your pocket. You can do it at home. You can do it at your leisure. You can do it whenever your child is ready to play versus having to get out in your car or walk down, if you're in the city, to where the location is at the specific time of day when the music class is. Which may or may not be convenient based on naps and location and all of that. So yeah, exactly.
It's always available, it's convenient. One way we like to talk about it is just in time, too. So you've got a question? I don't need to call somebody. I don't need to make an appointment. I just log in. Just in time, there's the resource that I need. So there's another way you can kind of talk about the availability there, which is another way to make it feel less overwhelming too. It's not about all of the things, it's about the thing you need right now. That's the opportunity. Because you don't know what other moms are gonna write about. The book that you need to read may not be written.
Or you have no idea which chapter to read first.
Exactly. You may not have a referral to a great therapist. You may not have the money for this. You may not have the time to make an appointment. This may be a thing you need right now. And that music class is great, but it's not answering all of your questions. That's the opportunity. Yes, okay, loving it. Brand-wise, what is your opportunity brand-wise? Let's focus on you first on this one. What do you think the parents that are going to be buying from you, what are they not getting from the market? Brand-wise, story-wise, alignment-wise, that you could represent for them?
So, I am both a mom of an infant and a toddler and I am a therapist slash professional.
You're a pro. (laughs) Alright, so it's a been-there-done-that brand with added professionalism, right? Which totally ties back to all of these things. So what we're starting to see here is a story that brings it all together. That's totally aligned, that's comprehensive. That all makes sense together. So that you can tell people just one thing, and they get it. Because it's one story instead of saying, well, it's kind of this, and it's this thing over here, and it's that other thing over there... No, I'm a mom. I'm also a professional. I know what you've been through and I know why it's happening, and that's why I've created all of these just-in-time resources that you can access whenever you want so that you can have the kind of relationship with your kids that you really wanna have. Right, sound good?
Well, we're not done yet. What do some of the other brands say they sell?
I mean, definitely how-to guides I guess.
So, let's think of this, sorry, in terms of benefits. So what are the outcomes?
Right. Okay, I guess like a music class is selling, here are the songs that you can play with your kid, here's a specific finite amount of time that you can spend with your child actively and focused. What else? The books, I mean I think the books are certainly selling a real, sort of an arc of information. This is all you need to know about how to parent this way or this way.
Okay, what else? Mom bloggers, what are they selling?
I think they're selling an ideal, right?
Yeah, they're selling that, you know, the Pinterest-perfect image of what it means to be a family.
Yeah, oh, family. I like that. Alright, what are therapists really selling?
Really selling? Knowledge and education.
And I would say science, the why. So, what are you really selling?
I am, I wrote it down.
Wow, you are an A plus student. (laughing)
I am selling community, connection, expert access, knowledge, and ideas.
Okay, we need one thing.
I know, this is the problem. I wrote it all down. (laughing)
Yeah, so, okay... What we sell is a membership library. What we sell is a library of resources to help you parent your child. But what we really sell is...
Access? How about continual peace of mind?
Yeah. Yeah, right. 'Cause you can go in... There's stuff for you when you have a newborn and there's stuff for you when you have a two year old plus. Yeah, it moves with you.
Yeah. I'm trying to think of a better word for continual. Like, evolutionary peace of mind. Yeah.
As I was listening to you, I was thinking, there's some authenticity there, and there's something around trust. Like, that all-in-one thing that you guys were talking about? I know once I've tapped into you, I don't need to read any of the other books, see the other blogs, so it's like that all-in-one thing.
Okay, so, I love what you just said, because those are differentiators, they're not the benefit, right? So, what is the benefit of authenticity and trust? I would say that's peace of mind. Because I don't have to worry about reading all the books. Or making all the appointments or going to all the classes. I can trust you because you have an authentic experience that is both professional and personal, yeah. And so that's peace of mind. Does that make sense? Yeah. So if that's what you're thinking, like, people really trust me because... Well, what's the benefit to the customer? What does that mean to them? Because it doesn't matter that you're a mom and a professional and that it's always available and that it's just-in-time. Like, those are all great, kind of extra selling points. They're the things you can use to illustrate this. But what really matters is that when you become a member of my resource library, you have continual peace of mind for the way you're parenting your child.
Evergreen peace of mind. I think there's a more consumery word that we can find. But it's a something peace of mind. (laughing) Right, about the way you're parenting your child. Isn't that what all parents want? Parents just want to know that we're not screwing up our kids. And so that's what you're selling. Peace of mind that you're not gonna screw up your kids. Sound good?
Okay, cool. Like, that's a much better way than saying well I really sell this, this, this, this, this, this, this. And that's where we're really going here. We just want to find that one thing that is the benefit that we're gonna lean in on. There are other benefits, right? There are other benefits to all of this stuff. We can talk about how it saves you time. We can talk about how it's more convenient. Or we can talk about how it gives you a sense of belonging to a community of other moms or parents who are doing the same thing you're doing. But what's most important is the thing that you're gonna decide to differentiate your brand on. Peace of mind. Cool, good?
Yeah. I like it.
Any questions about this? No, this is what you all need to do. Thank you. Say your name one more time?
Ayelet. I am going to get it. Ayelet.
You can say, I sing it, I shout it...
Oh, I like it. It sounds like this might be something that you use in your work. I love it.
Yeah, I'm a speech therapist.
Oh, I love it, Ayelet.
I got it.
Alright, any other questions about building out this story, this brand promise, this unique selling proposition? So that not only is your business focused on one core offer, but it's focused on one core message. Yes, Jennifer?
Okay, so, with Ayelet, she did a really broad thing. So we need to be thinking beyond just like, other types of things. We're thinking about the need and how people would find resources for that need?
Yes, exactly. So you guys probably heard me say before that markets are conversations, right? So when we're talking about a market analysis, what we're really talking about is a conversational analysis. I should probably have had a slide for this. But that's probably the easiest way for you to think about the full breadth of your market, is what are my people talking about? Not how are they talking about me or how are they talking about my competitors, but what all are they talking about when it comes to this problem that they have? Or the many problems that they have. The many goals that they have. The many questions that come up for them on a day-to-day basis. That whole conversation, in that whole conversation, with Ayelet we've got all these different word of mouth things. That's all conversation too, right? So there's all these resources being shared and traded. Hey, you should check this out, and you should check that out. What you want is a list of all of those things and then you're gonna go through this very simple analysis. You're gonna look at price. What customer exactly is attracted to that. What's the style that that solution is being delivered in? How is it available? What's the brand behind it? And it's gonna take you some time. I'm not gonna lie. This isn't fast. But this is central to the success of your business. You don't spend time on this? You don't value your business. It's that simple. So, this is gonna take you some time. Dive into this market analysis. And yes, take it as broad as you can. The broader you look, the better you have an actual perspective of what your customer is thinking about. Now, there's nothing more valuable than having a good perspective on what your customer is thinking about, right? And so that's what you gotta do. The whole breadth of the market. And go deep. Take your time. And ask yourself, every time, every layer you dig through... Pricing, customer, style. What's my opportunity here? How can I do this differently? How does my unique experience, my unique background, my unique perspective, my unique tool... How does it do these things differently? How can I use that to play it to an opportunity that exists there? I know we've got an online question. Let's bring that up. CreativeLiveFan says, "How is a core offer different "from what a lot of coaches call "a signature product?" It's not. Same thing. So, when we're talking about a signature product we're talking about the thing that your brand is known for, essentially. Sometimes they talk about it like that. Sometimes they don't. Your core offer is the same thing. It's the thing your brand is known for. It's that number one brand asset. And it's the way you make the vast majority of the revenue you bring in. So great question. Same thing. If it's easier for you to call it signature product, or program, or service, I'm all about that. That's fine. This is your homework. This is what you need to be working on. You need to find that unique selling proposition. I don't care if you have the product built yet or not. When you find your unique selling proposition, that hook that's gonna help people understand immediately why they need what it is that you need, the product starts to build itself. Because what Ayelet can do is say, alright, my ultimate goal is that every decision I make needs to help my customers have greater peace of mind. What does that look like? Every decision I make about my product, every feature I build into it, every resource I create, the platform I choose to build it on, the way I market it. Each and every decision has to help my customers have greater peace of mind. When you do that, you start to create this incredible story. People feel like they can trust you. They feel like you're not hiding something from them. They feel like you're helping them go in the direction they want to go. They feel like you've got the tool that can help them reach their ultimate goal. That's exactly how you wanna position your core offer, alright? Which leads us to kind of the ultimate question that we're asking here with this class, is that, what if you stopped thinking about how to make more money? When you think about how to make more money... How am I gonna market this? How am I gonna reach more people? How am I gonna sell more of these things? What else am I going to create that I can sell to my customers so that I can make my rent this week? Or so that I can pay my team of contractors? You stop thinking in terms of... How can everything I do be geared towards making my customers have peace of mind? Or having unprecedented access? Or whatever your unique selling proposition is. Instead, when you do start asking yourself that question, you get back to how you're making your highest contribution. How you're going to impact your customers' lives in the biggest way possible. How you're gonna fill a hole that they're never been able to fill before. That's awesome, that's incredible. Now you're building something that is complete and whole instead of something that's piecemealed. Instead of your junk drawer of offers, you've got that one tool that people feel so confident in using. They know exactly what it's for. It's for chopping wood. (laughs) They know exactly what chopping wood is gonna allow them to do, make s'mores, right? They're got that thing in mind. So your highest contribution, that thing that you've been put here to do, deserves a unique message. It deserves a hook that helps people get it. It deserves that story that helps you stand out no matter how crowded your market might be. But as I've been saying here, this is not a quick process. It takes serious thought. It takes regularly asking yourself the question, what's my opportunity here? If everyone else is saying all these different things, what's the thing that's not being said? What's the story that's not being told? And how am I uniquely equipped to tell that story? To answer that question, to fill that need? But the benefit of taking the time, taking the intention, putting in the hard work of that serious thought to find your hook, find the story that you wanna tell, is that your highest contribution actually has its highest impact. Because you can be doing great work, but not for enough people. And I don't want that for you. I want you to be doing your best work. Making your highest contribution for the most people. Now, this is only one piece of the puzzle. Of telling the story, of positioning your product. Helping you figure out what that framework is for what you're actually building with this core offer that still needs to be built. Or how you're gonna adapt it if you're going to be adapting it.