There are two principal schools of thought on whether to establish multiple streams of income or stick with a single offer. One says you should offer a single product so that people do not get confused. The other says that successful entrepreneurs should have seven different income streams.
I see a lot of entrepreneurs ask this question, sustainable lifestyle brands and creators are no exception.
I think that both have merit. From a branding perspective, there are a few things to consider:
- Multiple income streams work best under separate brands and/or serving different customer segments or journeys. Offering different products to the same customer segment, under the same brand, may confuse or distract potential customers from buying your signature product, delaying the sales cycle. Which leads to waste, both in resources and energy.
- It’s probably best to create new offers under the same brand and the same customer segments after the purchase of the signature product. Just like how Apple sells you the device before they sell the accessories. Even
- Adding more offers under one brand serving the same customer segment on the same journey can also work. It makes most sense if 1) you don’t have a single signature product (like eCommerce, sustainable lifestyle stores, or fashion labels), 2) your signature product has reached a good market share, 3) brings in $2M/year in revenue (or some other milestone), 4) your signature offer needs an updated version or is about to get phased out (like Kodak and film), and/or 5) you have the resources to dedicate an entire team to focus on the new offer.
When choosing the best path for your sustainability, the fastest and strongest growth always comes from the narrowest of focus. A tree always starts with one sprout, and once it takes root, that’s the only time when it grows more branches. When in doubt, it helps to look to nature for answers.