Many businesses have found themselves facing an uphill climb in the last couple of years. Though the economy is coming around, you might be stuck on a plateau – out of the woods, but not seeing improvements. 2011 is in full swing, so now is a good time to look at strategies to help your business to the top!
Here are 5 tips for helping your business grow this year:
1. Stay Educated. It’s important for you to keep up-to-date on new developments in your profession, and to educate your clients on what you have to offer. Attend some industry events (the change of scenery could be refreshing for you as well!) and subscribe to trade newsletters or online articles. Get to know your area – being well-informed about your market will help you spot potential clients and show existing clients that you are in tune with their needs.
2. Just Say “No.” Don’t say it all the time! But occasionally you might want to take on work that might not be a good fit for your business or your client. Step back and look at this decision: Who is your market? Will this project attract them? Is this offer appealing for immediate financial reasons, or will it benefit my business over a long period of time? Taking risks can be necessary for growth, but remember: not all business is good business.
3. Have Confidence. Showing your clients that you are confident in your business makes them confident in your business! Don’t be afraid to help a client evaluate the potential success of their idea – putting your two cents in could save them money, save you time, and provide a more effective outcome for everyone. Sharing your ideas opens you up to creativity, and being creative can help you meet a client’s expectations.
4. Stay Relevant. You want your business to be above the status quo; meaning that clients choose you over your competitors because you provide an experience they value. Try to look at your business from a client’s perspective: What is her #1 need? What is he hearing when I give this pitch? How can I meet more of their needs, or meet their needs more effectively? When you know enough to give a client what they want, they’ll come back again and again.
5. Respect Your Competition. It’s better to have allies than enemies! Look at your competition in a positive way. If you lose some business to a competitor, maybe it’s because the client wasn’t the right fit for your company. Look at what other businesses are doing to market themselves – you might get some great ideas!
In short, business growth in the new year is really going to depend on your commitment to staying current in your industry and knowing your client base. If you have all the right information and can communicate with your clients in a clear, confident way, you’ll soon be off that plateau!