Business growth doesn’t happen by chance, and when poorly managed it can actually do more harm than good. You need to make the right moves to ensure that your small business achieves long-term growth and financial success. Growing a small business is certainly challenging and requires a lot of work, but the journey is that much easier when you know which steps to take. Let’s look at four ways to grow your small business.
1. Listen to Your Customers
Both businesses and charities have customers or clients to serve.
While businesses would speak of customers in terms of individuals and businesses that purchase goods and services, customers to charities are the clients they serve, the donors who support the charity and the volunteer or staff members.
The saying goes that the customer is always right. Your existing customers are your most valuable source of information with regards to improving your business or charity. Creating an excellent customer experience is necessary, in order to drive growth, so pay attention.
Surveys, feedback forms and questionnaires are one way of gathering data but one of the best things you can do is simply to listen. To create a strong marketing strategy and an appealing customer experience, you need a deep understanding of what makes your customers tick. When you figure out what keeps them up at night, growth will surely follow.
2. Establish Customer Loyalty
Research by Invesp shows that it is five times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing one, and you should pay heed to this oft-quoted statistic.
Of course you will need to acquire new customers in order to grow your business or charity, but cultivating customer loyalty is incredibly important, too. You have a much greater chance of landing a sale with an existing customer, and they spend an average of 31% more.
The moral of the story is that you should not forget about your existing customers in the pursuit of new ones. Nurture your existing customer base with exclusive discounts, early access to special offers and loyalty programs.
Don’t forget about the power of referrals, either. Incentivise your current customers to bring in new business with offers and discounts. Not only is this a very affordable way of acquiring new customers, it will not cost you anything until you have actually made a sale.
3. Show Up on Social Media
These days, businesses need a social media presence just to prove that they are legitimate, but if you’re only posting once in a blue moon then you could be wasting a valuable marketing opportunity.
Content marketing via social media is a low cost way to grow your audience and attract new customers without spending a fortune on a flashy advertising campaign. Post content to social media in order to attract the eyes of new customers and stay front of mind. Otherwise, you will easily be forgotten about in favour of a competitor.
4. Professional Development
You should view your employees and volunteers as an investment. Let’s take a look at a well-known business proverb:
A CFO says to a CEO “What if we invest in developing our employees and they leave?”
The CEO replies “What if we don’t, and they stay?”
In order to grow your business or charity, you need to ensure that your employees and volunteers grow along with it. Building a strong and motivated team is vital to the success of your small organisation.
Team motivation has a direct impact on productivity, so make them feel valued. Listen to them, ensure that strong lines of communication are in place and invest in their professional development. As your organisation grows, you should train your employees to handle the new tasks that may become part of their job description and allow them to realise their potential. This will result in a high staff and volunteer retention rate and a team that works hard to ensure your organisation achieves success.
Play the Long Game
Success doesn’t happen overnight but if you’re serious about growing your small organisation, the above strategies will help you to get there. It is important that you approach this process with an investment mindset. By being patient and taking the above steps to grow your small organisation, you will soon find yourself on the road to financial success.