Business can be brutal because… well, that’s business!
Here are 7 quick and easy business tips to gain a competitive advantage over your rivals and insulate yourself from the threat of new entrants in the market.
1. Focus on leads, not sales
Of course, we all want to spark business growth and increase revenue. But the way you do this in a sustainable way is to focus instead on the building of a loyal database of avid fans.
Content marketing, paired with optimized website forms and intelligent email automation follow-up is critical to business success. This approach builds trust by giving away free value before asking for someone’s hard-earned money.
2. Don’t sell products, provide solutions
Don’t list all the benefits your product brings. Focus on the solutions. Explain to the customer in simple, straightforward terms how or why your product can help them or assist in the attainment of their goals.
3. Always optimize your pricing
Dropping prices doesn’t necessarily raise sales, for instance (though it will definitely squeeze margins). If you position yourself as a premium brand, then your customers aren’t necessarily value-driven in the first place, and cutting prices could even tarnish your brand.
4. Don’t make customers dig deep for a phone number
Even in the digital age, some customers will always prefer to contact you by phone rather than email or Facebook. While many online companies with tight margins eschew manned phone lines altogether, it’s worth giving customers the option of having a voice-to-voice conversation with your brand.
5. Use social media smartly
Try to give your brand some ‘personality’ when you write updates or posts. This can bring its own risks, of course. But if you get it right, the benefits can be immense.
Develop a tone of voice that aligns well with your brand identity. Seek to inform, help, entertain or amuse.
6. Own your niche
Sometimes it’s better to be a master of one discipline than a jack of all trades. Admittedly, multiple revenue streams do spread your risk: if one falters, others can take up the slack.
Nevertheless, consumers often associate ‘specialists’ with higher quality products or services than generalists. And with good reason, too: specialists typically invest all their resources into perfecting a single product or service.
7. Be humble
Don’t ever get too satisfied with your business. You can always improve – and improve you must!
By Faye Ferris