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This business coaching lesson teaches why you must have a solution to a problem in your business plan.

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Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 1


-Now moving on to the next segment here, we're talking about the solution. Now can you read this quote on the solution?

-Yeah. "Introduce your product and its benefits and describe how it addresses the problem you just described. Include a demo, such as a screencast, a link to working software, or pictures. God help you if you have nothing to show."

CLAY CLARK: So again, a lot of entrepreneurs-- like, I got this dream, bro, for this app. I mean, if I'm talking about you, just look right ahead. Don't look around. The thing is that everyone has a solution for the app. I got this app, dude. It's in my head. I got this app. It would be awesome if I opened up this bakery. And you go, well, do you have any examples of food you could show me? No.

So one, I'm just telling you, expect your customer to not even know there's a problem. Expect the customer to not even know that their videos are bad. Expect your customer to not even know why they would want a good one. Expect the customer not even to know about the bad turnaround time in the industry. Expect them not to know. But now in the solution, you have to solve those problems.

So the first slide is you're literally listing problem one, two, three, four, five. And now you're coming in here and you're providing a solution for all of those. You've got a solution here, solution here, solution here, solution here. I have the solutions. That's what you have to do. So you have to have the solutions documented. You want to have a demo.

MAN: No, that's perfect.

-Have you ever done a presentation where you go meet with a customer at their business and you get a chance to show them what you do.

-Yeah. I have done it.

-So let me walk you through how you would do it now.


-This is it right here. You'd sit down with him and you'd say, so how familiar are you with my business. And they'd say, well, I'm not really familiar. You say what we do is we make world class videos for business owners. And they say cool. You say, so basically what we do is we produce world class videos for business owners and we've made videos for this company and that company. We've been featured on this.

Do you know anything about our team? The customer says no. And you say, well, on our team we have no big deal, but we have Phil Knight of Nike. Anyone who's in Oregon who's a big deal. The Oregon duck is actually our mascot. It's a pet of mine. My pet duck. Then the customers goes, wow. You drop those big names. And then you go, well, tell me about your problems here. Do you ever have a problem with--

On a scale of 1 to 10, how highly would you rate the first impression of your business? Ask your customer, and they'll go, well, probably a 1. Well, on a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate your level of dependability from the videographers or designers you worked with in the past. They're like, well, probably a 4. Well, you know, how much business are you getting on a scale of 1 to 10 from your online videos. And they're like zero.

And you go, well, what about your-- if you just look at your overall marketing on a scale of 1 to 10, on the internet marketing search engine. How would you rate it on a scale of 1 to 10? And they're like, what's that? You're like, OK. So now you've created a problem. And now this, you're focused on solving it. Does that make sense?

MAN: Yeah. No, that's perfect.

-So solving. I'm going to read you another one. This is a notable quotable from Paul Graham. And Paul Graham is the guy who-- he started out, he started a company called ViaWeb, which was the first basically way for consumers to make online shopping carts. And he sold that dude for $49 million. And now today he's one of the four founders of Y Combinator, who launched Dropbox and Airbnb.

But he has this quote. He says, "Build something users love and then spend less than you make." So what he's talking about is, on this segment, you have to make sure that you're building something that people want. One of our mentors Jack Nadel says find a need and fill it. So this right here is find a need and fill it. So I'm going to ask you right now, rhetorically, what are you doing for your solution that's so different from everyone else?

-I work with small theaters in the area. Like plays, you do plays and stuff. And I create basically blockbuster movie trailers. I mean, it's not movies, but I'm the only one in the area that does it, that does it well. I've looked at all my competition. I've looked at all the sites and stuff. I've looked at all the theaters in the area. And they're all terrible and just bad.

-Well, there was a guy years ago who's not quite a billionaire, but pretty close. And I had an opportunity to work with him. I was hired to come in and help him do marketing. And he had come up with an organic cottage cheese. This totally organic cottage cheese. And he'd also invented some popular vodkas and things. So very successful as an inventor.

And he was telling me, he says, you know when you make this organic cheese, it's awesome. It tastes good. It's organic. But you know what? It's so expensive to make that people aren't willing to pay that much. So it's not worth doing. So I'm throwing this out here for you as you think about what you're doing for those theaters, is the solution going to be something that customers are willing to pay you enough money to get to your goals?


Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 2


-Yours truly used to DJ. So I'm at the Yucatan Liquor Stand. It's a place in Tulsa. It no longer exists. But if you're Google Earthing that beast, if you go to 81st and Lewis, you can kind of look up Yucatan Liquor. 81st and Memorial. 81st and Memorial. Old school there. That's where the Yucatan Liquor Stand is.

And so I would be there and I'd say, all right, ladies and gentlemen. Come up tonight here, folks. We're going to have an unbelievable drink special here. It's Thursday Thursdays. You're going to love it. We've got margaritas for this much. We've got $1 draws. We've got the-- and then the manager comes up and he's like, hey buddy, in Oklahoma, we can't offer discounts for the hard liquor. We can for the beer. I'm like, OK.

All right, folks. We have $1 draws, and I'm telling you, we have absolutely zero discounts on the hard liquor. But I'm going to tell you, folks. It is awesome. It is hot. Ladies and gentlemen, up next, this next song is from Nelly. We'd cue it up. And then I would DJ. I'm having a good-- listening to "Ride With Me." Having a good time. And then people would come up and go, man, you're good. Can I get your card?

So then I'd go out to Cronies and I'd go out to Club Millennium. Then I go out to, who gives a crap? And I'm out there DJing. And these people were like, we loved you tonight. Here's $200. I'm going, $200, put that in my shirt pocket. Felt pretty good. $200, $200, $200. And I'd start to discover over time that no matter how many of those events I'd do, I can't make more than $6,000 a month.

DAN: Exactly.

-So it occurred to me, I don't know that I should do this anymore. Because right when I got my $6,000, I remember when my first amplifier quit working. And that was like $800. I'm like, I just made $6,000, my amp broke. So you in the video world, how much are your lenses? Just a good lens? How much is a good lens?

DAN: You can spend up to $2,000 on a lens, or you can spend up to $800, $2,000. Just depends what you're doing.

-So and then your editing gear, I bet you've got a nice computer and all that.


-So I'm going to say this and I want you to write this down, let's figure out right now, you and every Thriver in the world, let's figure it out right now, how much money do you want to make per month? I need you to write it down. We're going to work through this.


-That's what you need?

-Oh, you mean for the rest of my life?

-Well, to achieve your goals. Let me give you an example. My wife, awesome lady, she loves to eat organic. And the candy bars she eats have to be handmade by somebody. So we go to Whole Foods and it's like, what's the most expensive candy bar you have here? And the Whole Foods guy goes, oh, well all of them are expensive. So you grab the candy bar. And that's the one my wife likes is the one that's the most expensive. You know what I mean? Those ones where it's organic and they give us $8 back to some charity per candy bar. It's crazy.

So anyway, and we do that. And then my kids, they eat money. You know what I mean?

DAN: They actually eat the money?

-I don't know that they actually do, but you know what I'm talking about. My kids, they have--

DAN: With the amount that you make, I'm sure they do, right?

-Well, we have five kids, and all of my kids, they go to the dentist. They're like, well, Aubrey's got a cavity and this one doesn't. But this one needs this, and that one needs this. And then Leia, my daughter, fell off her bike and she needed plastic surgery done. There's always an injury. There's always an illness. If you've got kids, you know what I'm saying.

So I'm asking you, kids aside, how much do you need to Thrive? Not to eke out a survival. What's that number?

DAN: Just to thrive?

CLAY CLARK: To thrive, man. Get that number. Whatever you want to do.

-I have long term goals and I'm not going to be sticking with this business forever, so I guess I would say $10,000.

-A month?

-A month. I mean, that's just like--

CLAY CLARK: So $10,000 per month.

DAN: I want to go further than that, but--

CLAY CLARK: Yeah. We got to start somewhere. So $10,000 per month. So if we're doing something that's $10,000 per month, we have to now think about how many $10,000 per month divided by how many clients equals $10,000. And you don't have to answer this, but based on what you're currently charging, what is the number of clients you would need to have to do that?

And if that number is not doable, to quit doing it.

DAN: So that's what I was thinking, too. Honestly, because when I asked you the question, I think I knew the answer to it, when I was asking you about like is this scalable? Is this a good niche to go for? And I was just like, I don't know. And so I needed somebody like you to just give me a reality check and tell me--

CLAY CLARK: Dude, and that's why making a business plan is so hot, because it forces you to think about these things. I'm just talking about your solution has to be a scalable solution that will allow you to get there. One more example so you don't beat yourself up if you're watching, and I don't want you to feel bad.

DAN: No, I don't. This is great.

-Have you heard me talk about the cheerleading mixes?

DAN: No. Tell me.

-So here's the deal.

DAN: Oh, wait. I did, in your book. But go ahead and tell the Thrivers.

-Well, this is jack-assery 101. But what happens is cheerleaders all want music to be mixed for their cheerleading routine. So the songs are like-- you'll like an AC/DC. Like-- what's an AC/DC song? I'm TNT. I'm dynamite. And then it goes. And you're going, I know that song. But they want it to be sped up. So it's like, I'm TNT. I'm dynamite. And then they want a boom boom, and then they want-- and they want this remix.

And so now it's like, I'm TNT. I'm dynamite-- whoop, there it is. Whoop. And you've got all these crazy mixes. And that's what cheerleading moms want. It's like you're on cocaine listening to AC/DC while you're listening to "Whoop, There It Is" and then they want some sound effects where it's like a sound effect from "The Mask' movie or something. It's the craziest thing in the world.

And somehow, someone said could you mix a cheer mix for my daughter. And I said, yeah, I can do a cheer mix for your daughter. Well unfortunately, they come back and go, that was the best mix we've ever heard. Can we do another one? And I'm like, yeah. So I literally was like 23, I'm married, my wife and I live in a very nice house, and I am up til midnight with these cheer moms in my house and they're going, I want to make sure that the whip comes in on the eight count. Five, six, seven, eight.


And they're like, can you put a scratch effect when we do our tumble, so--



And it's just the craziest. And then one mom's like, I want the song where it's like, and I'm TNT. Sometimes, I'm just messing with them. I'd say what song is that again? It's the one where I go I'm TNT. I'm like, I don't really know what song that is. But that's what I was doing. And my wife's like, honey, are you going to come to bed? And I'm like, no, I'm making cheer mixes.

And I'd finish and they pay me $40. My wife is mad. She's like, babe--

DAN: How many hours are you doing this?

-Like for two hours for $40.

DAN: Oh, gosh.

-So my wife's like, if you did this $20 an hour for the rest of your lifetime, you would never be able to afford the things we need to do. Furthermore, you're not leading your team. What are you doing? So I'm just saying, we all need a reality check. We all need to stop doing things that aren't going to get us to where we want to go. Cool?

DAN: Oh, perfect. Thank you.


Featured Coaching Excerpt - Notes & Transcript, Part 3

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