Do you have a plan for business growth? It really helps to have a long term vision, and a plan to make each of the small steps you can take to bring closer to that final goal. First though, you need to be aware of your strengths and weaknesses.
A Business Review
Take a good look at how your business has been performing. Get your outsourced bookkeepers to help you identify peaks and dips in profits and work out why. Where and how have you been most successful? Have you made mistakes in the past? Did you learn from them and make changes to turn things around? Are there still areas for concern? So what are your strengths and what are your weaknesses?
Overcoming the Weaknesses
If your weaknesses will hamper your chances of success, you must find a way to address them. Perhaps you need to recruit new skills or approach potential partners. But where will the money come from to attract and reward them?
Now you must look at your strengths. They are there to be exploited, so you can aim to build on what you are really good at. What makes your customers choose to buy from you and return for more? If you don’t know, why not ask them? Issue feedback forms and offer rewards for those who return them. Better still, make a few phone calls to the really loyal ones.
When you know what they think you are best at, find a way to do more of it and grow your revenue that way. Then you will have more profit to invest in overcoming your weaknesses and allowing even more growth.
Identifying and Setting up the Small Steps
Always remember that your best marketing tool is a good base of loyal customers, and whatever you plan to do must keep them interested, satisfied and coming back for more. They can help you find more customers by enthusing about your products and services among their family, friends and social media networks. One of your small steps could be to run a campaign in which you ask them for referrals in return for a discount voucher.
Your loyal customers can also let you know if they want more of the same and offer ideas about what else they would like from you. Another small step could be to decide whether to focus on developing what you already do, or whether to diversify into new products and services.
Should you invest in more advertising? Should you target new customer groups? Should you stay local or expand geographically? What kind of internet presence do you need? Don’t forget to keep tabs on your competition and how you can be different.
Phase in the various small steps over time. You can’t do everything all at once. The plan should remain dynamic, so make a point of reviewing it at regular intervals to judge the rate of progress and make changes where appropriate. Taking full advantage of your outsourced bookkeepers by involving them means you will always stay on top of your financial situation and will gain the benefit of their ideas and experience as well.