Hands up anyone who has gone into business without a formal business studies qualification! I would guess that would be the case in a few, if not the majority of, small businesses out there.
There are of course huge advantages of having a knowledge of business strategy, processes and planning. But if you’re too busy doing business to learn about the theory and processes of business, you can always hire a business expert to help you adopt better more efficient business practices.
Successful Business Strategies Can Make Your Business More Successful
Easy Steps to Get More Sales
One such expert is business growth and expansion professional David Hardisty, based in Horsham, Sussex, who can show you a handful of easy steps to follow to increase your sales, improve profits and manage your time more effectively.
“When I tell people how easy it is to grow your business to the level you want, they don’t believe me at first,” says David with a grin. “But sometimes the obvious processes to adopt are the most powerful and the least easy to see when you’re up to your neck in work and spend most of your time fire-fighting, both of which are common in small businesses.”
Defining Business Goals
So what kind of steps do you tell your clients to follow, I ask David.
“Any business needs to have some kind of plan in place, to give it direction and objectives to achieve,” David tells me. “You can call it a business plan, or a marketing plan, or whatever you want, but the important thing is to put in writing topics such as your business goals, your existing and potential customers, your unique selling points and strengths, as well as weaknesses, and who your competitors are.”
Define Market Niches
Anything else it’s important to put in the plan? David smiles ruefully and says, “You’d be surprised how many small companies haven’t got a clear defined description of their products and services, and pricing plans for these packages and combinations of packages. You should also have a clear idea of your marketing position as compared to competitors – what you offer that they don’t, or what you do better or cheaper.”
Well, now that you say it, David, it does sound obvious. Before you can sell anything, you should know how much to charge, who wants to buy and where do you find those customers.
It’s About Time
He nods in agreement. “Another pitfall for small companies is inefficient time management. Most people are tempted to do what they enjoy most, not the highest priority tasks that are sometimes essential to tackle.”
After getting familiarized with your business and market niche, David can then suggest proven strategies that will make sure you run your business more efficiently, just by using the time available in a different way and prioritizing your daily activities.
Ditch the Bad Habits
“The techniques I tell people to use are not new – they’ve been tried and tested and will shake you out of bad habits that waste time and replace them with processes that work and use available resources more efficiently. As an example, writing the phone number of a sales lead on a piece of paper that’s easily lost, instead of entering it into a spreadsheet or CRM system, is definitely what I’d call a bad habit!” says David with a laugh. “Also, how many people use their existing happy customers to attract new ones with a referral system, which could be automatic or could just involve putting testimonials on a website?”
Now that you mention it David, avoiding these bad habits that can just persist because of resistance to change or laziness would definitely be a good thing for business.
Attract New Customers
He continues, “Also, a lot of small businesses just drift along attracting new customers via word of mouth, which is good, but defined marketing strategies to reach a fresh market could also be enormously successful.”
When David’s customers start putting his suggested methods in place, they can expect to see beneficial changes fairly rapidly. “Like shaking off any bad habit, it takes a while to get used to the new system, but when you see the results within a couple of weeks, the change is very rewarding.”
Learn more about David Hardisty and his business growth and expansion advice here, at http://davidhardisty.com/