Statistically speaking, typically only half of business startups last more than five years, with the rest unable to make it more than two years. Creating a sustainable business is not an easy task, especially when dealing with competition, turning a substantial profit, and dealing with a floundering economy which are reasons why startups fail.
However, the key to creating a long-term business is creating a growth strategy that works. For most businesses, one of the biggest mistakes they can make is opting not to make a tangible business growth strategy. When blindly trying to grow a business, most are actually losing business.
In order to build a business with a sustainable future, it is key to create a growth strategy and adhere to it. Here’s how:
The first step to growing your business is taking the time to focus on your business. Taking a step back and looking at where your business is currently, you can determine the weak and strong areas in your business. Once you diagnose the areas that are lacking, you can begin strategizing how to fix those problems. For instance, consider looking into performance management training, as this can help you and your business grow more proficient in managing all areas of your business, especially the financial areas.
Sit down and evaluate your business values and ethics. How you conduct your business affects the longterm growth of your business and sets your business apart from the competition. Why do customers choose your company over the competition? Or, why should they choose your company over the competition? Your business values and ethics can help customers identify with your company.
Customers or Clients
It can be hard to reach customers if you are unsure of who your target customer is. Determining who your target audience is can help you narrow down your marketing focus, leading to attracting more of the right customers for a fraction of the time and money. For instance, it is better for businesses to reach 100 ideal customers who will purchase a product or service than it is to reach 1000 people who are not interested. Honing in on the right audience will lead to better sales from loyal customers.
How is your business currently making its revenue? Is it through sales? Through consulting? An online e-commerce store? Once you identify your current revenue streams you can begin looking for ways to diversify your income. If your business relies on sales, consider looking into other revenues such as affiliate marketing, consulting, other products, etc. However, before implementing these new ideas, consider their longterm reach. If they do not have a future beyond a couple of months, they might not be worthwhile in the end.
Even if you are the top business in your industry, there is always something to learn from the competition. Typically, the competition is doing at least one thing different from your company. Determining what it is they are doing differently can help you determine areas of weakness in your company. Moreover, seeing the differences can give you a chance to consider why your competitors are doing something differently. Is it a viable option? Is it something you should consider? Why or why not?
Additionally, seeing how your competitors conduct business can help you determine their weaknesses. If your company can capitalize on a weakness, such as offering a product or service they are lacking, you can help to edge out the competition.
Finally, one of the best growth strategies you can implement is finding and hiring talented employees. Typically, your employees are the ones who have the most contact with customers and clients, thus it is imperative your employees are passionate about the business and motivated to do their work to the best of their ability. There is no higher price than hiring bad employees who could care less about the business, as their poor work ethic and lazy attitude will bleed over into their interactions with customers, leaving you and your business to pay for the repercussions.
While all businesses are different, all businesses need a growth strategy to achieve a future. Taking the time to create a strategy that fits your business’s goals and ethics will help lead it to a sustainable future.
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