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What will you do in the New Year to help your small business grow?

What will you do in the New Year to help your small business grow?


Tue, Dec 23, 2014

Business Buzz

by Candice Sealey

It’s that time again… almost the end of the year when you should be reviewing what transpired during the year. Have you considered what you will be doing differently in 2015 to help your small business grow?{{more}}

Before embarking on new projects, how about improving strategies that are already working? If you already know that the strategy works, you just need to optimize it to enhance its performance. It is possible that you have been using effective strategies, but just not to their full capacity. By optimizing current strategies, you’ll save time and money and likely increase revenue more quickly. On the other hand, if you have done nothing or very little, then you must start planning as soon as possible.

Here are some tips:

1. Link your marketing activities to environmental reminders

There are environmental reminders everywhere which are linked to ideas and concepts. Sight, smell or sound can trigger related thoughts and ideas, therefore making them top of mind and as a result cause the customer to act. The smell in your retail store can have a tremendous effect on your sales revenue!

How can you apply environmental reminders or triggers to your business? Let’s say you own an auto repair shop and you also sell tyres, including tyres that handle wet conditions well. When it’s the rainy season and heavy rain is the order of the day, why not prominently display the tyres that handle wet conditions well during the week of the heavy rain or storm and include verbiage that promotes the purchase of those new tyres. Enhance this with advertising across targeted mediums. By tying your promotion to an environmental influence, your tyre sales are likely to increase.

2. Be cognizant of your customer habits

One of the best decisions you can make is to attach your marketing efforts to your customer habits. Do you know your customer’s habits? If you take the time to research and be aware of the market in which your business exists, you can increase the effectiveness of your strategies. E.g., lunchtime is when many people run errands or they do a bit of shopping, since most stores are closed at 4 or 5 p.m., which coincidentally is the same time that many people finish work. If you are a hair stylist or a retailer, create something that will catch people’s attention at lunch, so that visiting your establishment becomes one of their errands!

3. Link your marketing to popular events and holidays

To be successful in special occasion marketing, the key is to take advantage of the influx of customer spending by tying your products and services to that very holiday or event. You may say that you already do this, but are your messages and offerings optimized? E.g. let’s say you own a cleaning business; your main offering is power washing, but it’s the off season for power washing; how about examining events or occasions during the year that can be linked to the use of power washing?

By repeating and improving upon your current activities, you will create momentum. Momentum sustains affordable and efficient small business growth and affects how healthy your revenue growth will be.

Your business can see growth in 2015 if you:

– Sell more to your current customers: You can increase your revenue and be more profitable if you do this. Tell your customers more about other products/services you offer! Cross selling and up selling are vital, but should be relevant. Pay attention to what your present customers buy and offer them relevant goods and services that might be useful! If you have a retail store with sales clerks, that’s their role! To cross sell and up sell, not to engage in the latest gossip. Once a customer steps into your business, it’s now up to you!

– Attract new customers through increased INVESTMENT in marketing.

– Expand existing sales channels or create new ones; e.g. are you using your website/social media as a sales channel?

– Once you have thoroughly researched the market, why not introduce a new service or product – it can give you an instant edge.

– Create partnerships with other businesses – sharing resources and expertise can be quite rewarding for both parties.

Candice Sealey is Founder of Ignite! Full service Marketing & PR Consultancy Company offering tailored services to help businesses succeed. Create new sparks and get better results for your business. Follow us @Ignite3D, Email: [email protected]