“April showers bring May flowers”. As the weather gets warmer and the earth turns greener it’s only natural to think of growth. Of course when you run any kind of business, thoughts of growing – and managing growth – are never too far away.
In the same way you’d plant seeds to begin a garden, there are also seeds you can plant to encourage growth in your business. Just be sure to have a goal, and plan in place to handle the new business. Here are a few “seeds” you can plant.
Widen your social media activity. These days most businesses have profiles on at least a couple of social sites. But how well are you using them? Do you spend a lot of time reading and “liking” other people’s posts or are you making your own? Instead of reading articles, write some. Join groups and participate! Reach out to new people; engage and make connections. Explore the blogs and comment on the ones that your prospects are likely to be following. In order to get more business, you have to reach more people. Social media is a great way to begin that process.
Invest in making yourself unique. No matter what business or industry you’re in, there are literally hundreds and thousands of others doing much the same thing that you do. In order to get ahead you have to find a way to stand out. It may be your tagline, your logo, the combination of products and services you offer, or your method of delivery. Even a business has a personality. Use your creativity to find ways to be different and memorable.
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Get affiliates to sell your product/service. Open a new location. If your operation is big enough you could even consider franchising. If you’re looking for big growth, more is the way to do it.
Teach or write about your industry. Whatever you do, you want to be seen as an expert if you want more people to pay you for it. Writing a book or teaching classes certainly helps put you in that category. You’ll improve your reputation and likely make new contacts who are already interested in your field.
Expand your target market. When you are beginning your business, one of the best ways to get established is to have a very tightly defined niche. You have to be very specific about who you are trying to sell to. But once you’ve conquered that target it’s time to loosen the target a bit and sell to an adjacent market. For example, if you make a product aimed at young parents perhaps you can adjust the product – or the message – so that it appeals to grandparents as well. A B2B (business-to-business) company may find that their service can also be used by retail customers. Looking at what is (or could be) beside you is another good way to grow.
What seeds will you plant this Spring?