How to grow your small business


Growing and ensuring the success of your small business can take time, patience and a lot of blood, sweat and tears. In particular as the majority of small to medium sized businesses fail during their first few months, however, this does not mean that you have to become another sorry statistic. The reality is that most small business owners do not have the time or workforce to pump their precious budget into marketing efforts, as any earnings that you do make will have to be immediately reinvested. However, this does not mean that you will struggle to grow your small business, as there are a few clever ways that you can raise your profile without having to spend a fortune.

Before you begin any marketing or social media efforts, it is vital that you work out just how much money you actually have to invest in growing your business. This total should form part of your business plan that you will need to draw up and review on an annual basis. A business plan provides you with a point of reference against which you can compare your spending to check that you are on track and in budget. Plus, if you are spending a lot of money and cannot work out where your funds are going, then you can use your plan to review why and how your business is failing at this present time. It might seem like a lot of effort, but drawing up a plan is a vital first step for any small business owner, as this will ensure you stick to your target and reach your goals in no time.

Take a tip from your competitors

If you are entering a highly saturated market, then you may want to start by reviewing your competitors, both large and small. Although this might be an unusual first step, it will help you to better work out which campaigns and products will work well, and which may be a complete failure, in particular if you are trying to sell a niche or specialist product. Plus, you can tap into any areas that your competitors may not have yet explored. It may ne worth taking the time to the phones and start cold calling or sending our speculative emails to check in with any potential clients and customers. Once any new leads know that you are beginning to launch your firm or fill a gap in the market, then they may be instantly interested in signing up and beginning business with you. So, it certainly pays to check in against your competitors to ensure that you remain streaks ahead and that your small business becomes market leader in little to no time at all.

Focus on your customer

If you are looking to grow and develop your business then you need to make sure that you keep your customer at the forefront of your mind. Most businesses forget to take this crucial step, preferring to spend huge amounts of money on new office space or other unnecessary expenditure at this early stage. However, focusing on your customer is a sure fire way to save you money in the long term – as if you spend on a product or marketing campaign that flops, it will be because you have not taken time to get to know your market and consumer base. It is vital that you are open to change, and prepared to adapt to meet with new trends and market requirements. You do not have to become completely uniform, but it pays to check in and follow the latest trend to ensure that your product offering remains relevant and engaging. Focus on your customer during the first few months after your launch, and you will see your bank balance boom.

Build your marketing campaign

An effective marketing campaign is vital for the success of any small business, so you need to make sure that you have drawn up a detailed plan that you can stick to and roll out during the first few months. Firstly, be sure to use social media to raise awareness of your business and what you offer. From Instagram to Twitter and even Facebook or LinkedIn, you can tailor your online content to meet with your current business needs and boost your online presence, enabling your small business to grow. You should also be sure to engage with your online followers, by replying to posts and dealing with inquiries in a timely and responsive manner. Next, you can begin to focus your attention on producing your merchandising to share at trade shows, local fairs and even at small scale networking events. Wholesale Lanyards offer a range of custom lanyard designs for promotional events. Get creative when it comes to the merchandising that you produce, and check online for any offers or companies that offer reduced rates. Be sure to produce just enough stock, and try not to bulk buy – as this may be hard to shift in the long term.

If you are looking to grow your small business, then you will need to take time to draw up a business plan that you can stick to during the first few months of your venture. Make sure that you do your market research and check out what your competitors are doing, so that you can stay ahead in your market. Plus, you can also learn from their mistakes and avoid replicating them yourself. Be sure to use social media to target your customers, clients and any interested parties to create an online following and gain new leads for your firm. Do not forget to produce enough items of fun merchandising to share and hand out at events, to boost your small business presence. Finally, make sure that you put the customer first. Remember that you need to make sure that your efforts are fully transparent, but also engaging enough to gain new clients. Once you have done all this, you are bound to see the results that you desire.


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Founded in 1994 by the late Pamela Hulse Andrews, Cascade Business News (CBN) became Central Oregon’s premier business publication. •

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