Approximately 543,000 new businesses get started each month.
Every new business is competing to be the best in their area – but every business owner is learning so much in this period. Handling bills, employees, customers. It’s an endless task list with the pressure of first getting their return on investment then growing their business. So many different avenues of growth can be taken, but most business owners are torn at where to start and often are too overwhelmed to take the first step.
Here we are going to talk about critical first steps to take and how you can start growing your business.
1 . Get in the head of your customers
Without customers, you have no business. Period. So it’s important to cater any marketing efforts to who your customers are. Understand, what do your customers need? And how are they going to find your business? Are your customers shopping around before spending money with your business, or are they likely to become customers immediately? Will they be one time customers, or do you have customers for life?
There are no hard and fast rules to marketing to your customers until you understand their demographics and get in the head of them as consumers.
Let’s say for example you own a massage parlor, and you want to attract new clients. You know that your current clients tend to come back time after time. You may find that word of mouth campaigns and offering incentives to clients who refer their friends will be more effective than taking a shot in the dark with ads. Conversely, if you’re a plumber who specializes in repairs for old homes, you may have very good luck with ads targeting homeowners in specific neighborhoods.
Know what your customers are looking for, and where, and target your marketing efforts into making it easy for them to find you!
2 . Have the best reputation possible – online and through word of mouth
Regardless of your customer demographics, reputation matters. If your business has been around for years and years you probably already have some kind of reputation. People tend to rely heavily on the opinions of others before becoming customers of a business. If you’ve been around for a long time, you better hope that you have stellar online reviews to show for all your hard work.
Because studies have shown that 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations! When people are choosing where to spend their money, they want as much assurance as possible that they’re making a good choice. Having positive review online validates your consumers who are considering becoming your customers.
Don’t worry if your business is on the newer side, there’s no day like the present to begin building a positive reputation on review sites.
3 . Get social! Use social media to your advantage.
Even if you aren’t keen on social media for yourself, having social media pages for your business can be largely advantageous! Not only does having a business profile on social media legitimize your business, you also have the opportunity to gain an audience for ads and promotions.
Big brands utilize social media effectively to generate buzz, but you don’t have to be a big brand to get positive attention. Sharing articles, pictures, or starting discussions is a great way to generate a sense of community. Especially if you’re introducing a new product or service, a social media post can help your following stay in the loop and encourage them to stop by.
There are so many different social media pages you can have it can get a bit overwhelming. Our advice: pick one and be really good at it. If pictures are your thing, focus on an Instagram account. If its words or articles, consider Twitter. Pick Facebook to get a mix of both. As a bonus, social media is a great channel to show adds. All three of those channels allow you to promote your posts to get a wider viewership targeted to your local area.
So what are you waiting for? Start sharing!