How Do I Grow My Business?

how do i grow my business

How do I grow my business? This is a common question amongst business owners and evident in the businesses I work with as it is one of the key reasons they hired me as their business coach. This article will help those of you who don’t have a business coach, and I hope my 10 tips help your business to grow and thrive.

As I said, most business owners are looking at ways to grow their enterprise and it’s often much harder work than people expect. You may have fantastic products and services but wondering why aren’t people queuing up to buy from you.

Now you may start reading the below and think hey, these are soooo obvious, but trust me when I say they might be obvious. I have seen many times in my years as a coach that a lot of businesses don’t do them all, or do them but not very well so it’s well worth having this as a reminder

It’s natural to stay in your comfort zone yet it isn’t a good place to stay and is not what your business needs right now! For example, you may be a brilliant architect and your comfort zone is designing buildings, but in order to grow, you also need to be focusing your efforts on other areas but which ones and how is where people can stumble before they even get started.

Ask yourself where your business is going?

You would not start a journey without knowing where you were going and having a route to get there! A Formula 1 team doesn’t start a race without the desired outcome, it might be to win, it might be to beat their best lap time, or finish further up the field. So why would you run your business without a clear objective?

You need to have a clear VISION of what you want your business to become (aim for 5 years), a MISSION that describes how you are going to get there and what VALUES you want your business to operate by.

Once you know where you are going you can construct a plan of how you are going to get there. And then you base everything you do based on the plan.

The plan

Have a plan for how you are going to grow your business over the next 5 years, with increasing detail the closer to today you get. And then make sure you deliver that plan and review it regularly as things will change.

If you need a helping hand you could sign up for a one-day business planning event such as our GrowthCLUB where you can bounce your ideas off fellow business owners and coaches or use independent online tools such as Biz Plan

Poor Cash Flow Kills Businesses

One of the biggest killers of businesses is cash flow, not having enough money to operate the business!

You need to have a budget that describes what your revenue will be, what you will spend, and how much money you have available at the bank to invest back into the business or take as dividends.

You need your financial information in almost real-time so you can make changes in the business to react to situations such as increasing marketing and sales activity if revenue is down, and be able to hire more staff if you have more business than you expected. At best the budget sheet is a best guess at what is going to happen, but your budget is one of the best descriptions of what your business is going to do so make sure you have one!

Move the Conversation Away from Price

The next step is to question what separates your business from all your

competitors. Ignore great service and knowledgeable staff, they are simply hygiene factors

– everyone claims them! Why would someone choose your product or service that makes you unique? You want the conversation to be around the value they receive and not about the price

The work you did previously on your Vision, Mission, and Values for the business will give you a good start here, but you will also need to do your market research.

Don’t skimp on marketing

I would suggest that every business should have a marketing strategy based on what I have already highlighted above. Don’t think a few social media posts here and there will suffice. If you want to grow you will need to put in place lots of marketing activity. If you don’t have a strategy hire a marketing specialist to have a consultation with you. We have lots of contacts should you need a recommendation. It’s an investment well worth making.

A good marketing strategy will ensure your marketing campaigns support each other. If you are running a leaflet drop campaign, potential customers are likely to do more research, so you need to ensure you have a website or online platform where they can learn more about your products and access reviews.

Always be selling

Many businesses go through cycles of boom or bust, that is they go out and build their sales pipeline, win some work and then focus on delivery almost abandoning any sales activity. When the job is complete they have no more work and so no income, at which point they have to start on the whole sales nurture process again.

As a business make sure that you always have an appropriate amount of sales activity on- going! Either manage your own time so that you are allocating a part of your week to sales activity or employ someone to do it on your behalf.

Aim to keep the customer or get them to refer you to others

Having gone to the effort of winning a new customer make sure you don’t lose them! It takes a lot of effort to win a new client but much less to keep them!

Outstanding customer service is first and foremost. Set service targets and measure your performance at all stages of delivery from how long it takes to answer the phone or respond to emails, how long it takes to acknowledge the orders, the time to ship from your warehouse, and how quickly it is delivered.

Keep in touch with your clients, phone them, and email them. Ask them how you did and what could you do to improve. Anonymously survey your clients periodically so you can see what they really think!

Networking is marketing too!

There are numerous networking events in the local area so choose one appropriate to your business. Networking is not necessarily who is in the room at the time, but who they know. You may be an electrician and meet a plumber at the networking and afterward they introduce you to someone building an extension to their house.

Partner with other businesses

As an extension to networking, you may also want to partner with other complementary businesses. As an accountant you may want to partner with a marketing agency, you are not in competition with each other but you do have similar target markets. You both refer each other to your customers or you could look at possible joint marketing initiatives.

Have a product ladder

A product ladder is a number of offerings that you sell increasing in price as you climb the ladder. Think of a car wash, the cheapest service is to wash the outside of the car, then maybe inside and out, then wax finish, and finally a full valet. The idea is that someone

can try the service at a relatively low price and if they are happy they may then try the slightly more expensive service. This technique means that if they can’t afford your top product you can offer them a cheaper alternative.

Finally, if it works, do more of it…

You may have noticed a bit of an obsession with measuring what your business is doing at all levels throughout this blog! The key to growing a business is knowing how your business is performing in real time. If sales drop off you need to know so you can take steps to increase sales. If you are losing customers, what are you doing wrong and how do you fix it?

Put simply, if something is working well do more of it, if it is not getting the expected results to do something else!

Article by Rupert Turton

If you need help growing your business, book a discovery call with me here