To keep your business growth strategy steady and alive, it goes without saying that business leaders should always be on the lookout for new opportunities.
Surprisingly, nine out of ten businesses fail to execute a successful business strategy, but complacency is the enemy of business owners.
The world around us is evolving and developing rapidly, and we must do all we can to stay ahead of markets, customers and competitors.
So to amplify your business growth, think about considering one or more of the following business tools and strategies to take operations and sales to the next level.
1) Set goals
Taking the time to sit down and plan the next chapter of your business helps you gain focus and set achievable milestones. By taking a step back, you create some breathing space not just for yourself, but for your employees and partners.
Once you’ve set your goals, list the necessary steps you’ll need to take to achieve each of these. If one of your goals is to generate 3 new business opportunities within the next year, it won’t seem so daunting if you break it down into shorter term steps.
Plus, by noting everything down, you instantly become accountable. And, by resolving to review these goals regularly, you’ll be aware of obstacles and roadblocks that are hindering your progress.
What is it you want to achieve in 90 days, 6 months, 1 year, 5 years from now?
2) Identify your why
As soon as the focus shifts from ‘what’ to ‘why’: why you do what you do, rather than what you do, your company’s core proposition comes into focus.
Why does your organisation exist? If you can establish your why, you’ll identify your purpose.
In the words of Simon Sinek, “when you think, act and communicate with why, you can inspire others”. This inspiration is what engages others with your business, resonates and connects. It helps people form an affinity with you. And that arguably, is the answer to customer loyalty.
Plus, this approach doesn’t discriminate between employees, leaders or managers and you can start to consider and plan for how this impacts your prospects and potential customers.
3) Stay in touch
Generating new business opportunities doesn’t always have to involve new customers.
Whilst growing your network is an essential business tool, it’s equally important to stay in touch with existing networks, peers and customers.
It costs six to seven times more to acquire new customers than it does to retain existing ones. Your existing customers are extremely valuable, so don’t forget about them.
Equally, networks and peers might begin to forget about you if you’re not making the effort to stay in touch. Even making yourself more visible on online networks such as Linkedin can generate interest and conversations. Sharing content and commenting on peers’ content helps you gain exposure and make yourself more memorable.
4) Take a step back
Often, opportunities are overlooked when you’re so immersed in the day-to-day running of your business. It becomes difficult to ‘see the wood for the trees’, and objectivity is lost.
It’s easy to get attached to your business, especially if you’ve raised it from birth. But this mindset can hinder growth, making it difficult to see where improvements can be made. If you’re attached to old processes, simply taking some time out, or bringing in a third-party could be the answer to evolving your strategy.
By planning a short break (yes, this is possible!) and committing to turning off email notifications can give you that much needed step back, enabling you to regain focus and clarity.
Alternatively, you could consider hiring a business strategist to offer some third party insight and objectivity. A good business strategist could be worth their weight in gold. They’ll work with you to identify missed opportunities and calculate and mitigate risks.
5) Become an industry expert
Many people find the idea that they could be considered an ‘industry expert’ daunting. But the reality is that often, you’ve been working in your field so long that you already hold all of the answers your prospects are hungry for. This valuable knowledge could be the answer to earning your status as a trusted and authoritative source within your sector.
Help, don’t sell. By speaking, writing, and sharing your knowledge, potential buyers learn to feel comfortable with your brand and will likely seek to find their next solution with you.
Are you aware of their questions and pain points? How does your solution help to solve these?
Whilst developing this strategy you’ll find that whilst informing your prospects and customers, you learn more and grow as a business owner too. You’ll acquire new knowledge and techniques as a result of your newfound thirst for research on industry-relevant topics.
Finding the time to plan and execute a business strategy is a challenge for many leaders. With the day-to-day operations of the business taking up a large proportion of your time, the status quo naturally becomes the most comfortable option. But gaining some top-level insight could be the answer to clarity and growth. Opening the door to third parties and setting achievable goals allows you to gain some perspective and objectivity that might otherwise be buried in daily tasks. A steady and sustainable business that is open to growth is surely one that succeeds in today’s disruptive landscape.