6 Key elements to building a £1 million business.

If you are in business, the first million is the hardest to achieve, statistically, only 4.1% of start-ups reach £1m turnover in the first 3 years of trading. The stats get a little hazy after the 3-year period but what is clear is that to survive the high-risk early days you must fight hard.

So, hypothetically you have passed the £100k turnover barrier, cruised past £400k turnover and now have your sights set on £1 million.

So before we can talk about some of the key elements of getting to the big seven figures, let’s just clear up a few things…

Turnover isn’t everything – profit and cash flow are more important. That said, if you have a budget, profit margins planned. Having a sales or revenue goal really matters.

Growing too fast can dangerous – If you don’t have a plan and grow too fast you will buckle under the weight of success just as easily as going out of business because you’re losing money.

Your why matters – If you build your business without knowing why your business will turn into a source of frustration and resentment. You need to build your business intentionally.

No plan, no outcome – If you don’t plan for it, it will never happen. If it is not on your agenda daily, it won’t feature monthly or annually.

Little steps, not big strides – A series of little steps are better than a giant stride. Too much weight is put on big things and not enough on the small details.

So, let’s get down to it, what are the key things you can do to push beyond the £1 million turnover?

1 Know your USP

Price is never a USP, your unique offering to your prospective customer must be more than price. Often, I meet people who say their USP is customer service quality or speed, but let’s be honest everyone says this. You need something which resonates with prospective customers that is bigger than this.

  • How does your product or service make life simpler for your customers?
  • How can you save your customers time?
  • How can you help your customers achieve their aspirations or needs?
  • What problem can you solve in a way which is better than your competitors?


2 Discover your message

There are lots of ways of presenting your message to the world. What you say and how you present it is key. For most of us, we are bombarded with advertising and messages which try to get us to buy or do something. We’ve become desensitised. How will your message, marketing and sales messages break through this?

If you look at some of the recent political campaigns you will see marketers really pushing to get us to call straplines and key messages, business is no different, we have to land messages which our prospects will recall and remember.

Do you remember “Make America Great Again”

You may not like it, but Mr Trump managed to land his message with the right people, who turned out and voted him into office.

You need a message which connects with your prospects and makes you the supplier or provider of choice. The right message will improve your conversion and consideration process.

3 You don’t need everyone.

On most social platforms, it only takes a small number of people to send content viral, it’s probably less than 100 people. Your business to hit its sales goals needs to reach the right people with the right message. It isn’t about blasting your message across the globe, it is about hitting the right people with the right message.

We call this creating an eco-system. Creating a clearly defined list of people you want to work with and developing a strategy to connect and develop new business.

For you to reach your goal it may be just 20 clients to hit your target. Often people spend tens of thousands on reaching thousands when if they focused the same money on reaching 100 they would be far more effective.

Who is the right customer? In the B2B world, 80% of revenue comes from 20% of the client base, to reach your £1 million target, you need to spend time winning more of the right clients.

4 Develop consistency.

Consistency is a huge problem for SME’s. Sales and marketing require work day-in-day-out. Short bursts of activity are like fireworks, they make a big bang and a flash but no real impact. Even the smallest of efforts if repeated consistently can have a huge impact.

Often, I meet people who have spent tens of thousands on the next big marketing campaign to be disappointed with the results. If the same budget had been spent on simple stuff which is consistently carried out it will deliver massive rewards.

5 Done is better than perfect.

I’ve spent hours with people debating shades of blue, minute details and procrastinating on actions. You’ll never have a perfect business and you’ll never have a perfect growth plan.

Often we over-analyse details which are irrelevant to the majority. A solid presentation completed and delivered is worth two nearly done or shelved presentations. You’ll have to accept that everything won’t be perfect.

Iteration is your new best friend.

6 Know your numbers.

If you don’t know your numbers, you won’t know what success looks like and what your energy and activity look like. What is the sales cycle from prospect to sale? What is your prospect to sale success rate? All these numbers give you key metrics to know how to climb the £1 million mountain and how much energy.

Do you know today how many enquiries you need to receive to reach your goal?

So where are you at?

Have you set a plan and then let it gather dust?

My day job is working with business owners not just to put all the above together but to get this done, get the enquiries through the door and in the inbox.

Do you want to hit the £1 million mark?

Schedule your free growth strategy call with me using the button below

Dean Seddon is the Founder of Maverrik, a UK based marketing and growth consultancy which helps SME’s and entrepreneurs develop and implement and deliver business growth. Find out more about Dean on LinkedIn.