How to grow your small business?
When you’re starting a business, it can be hard to know what you need to do to grow your company. How do you compete with bigger companies? What are the best marketing strategies? Do I need a website, or is that just for big businesses?
If only there was an easy-to-follow guide that explained everything in one place…
How to grow your small business when you don’t have a ton of time or money?
You can’t do it all, so don’t try. Focus on what you’re good at and find ways to delegate the rest.
This is a mindset that will serve you well as your business grows and evolves in the years ahead.
If there is anything your team isn’t yet capable of doing, consider hiring someone who can help them learn—but also understand that this investment may not always be worth it if they’re not willing or able to take on additional responsibilities when needed (and sometimes even when unneeded).
Don’t be afraid of saying no either! When things aren’t a good fit for your company, remember that time spent doing work outside of your core competencies is wasted time—it won’t grow your business or make you better at what matters most.
Be clear about what value you offer before charging for any kind of professional service; otherwise, clients are likely to assume they could do just as well themselves with some online research!
1. Stick to your niche
You need to know your audience and focus on your strengths. In order to do that properly, you must be aware of what niche you are operating within.
What’s a niche?
You’ve probably heard the word “niche” thrown around in marketing circles, but do you know what it means?
A niche is a market segment—a group of people who share a common interest or need. For example, if you’re a restaurant owner looking to attract customers, you might decide to focus on families with young children. That’s your niche.
You can also think of niches as being like little caves: they protect your business from the competition and help it grow while still remaining small enough to be manageable.
How can you find your niche?
To find your niche, ask yourself what problems you want to solve and who you want to help. Do this by taking time to think about your own experiences: what have you done in life? What are your talents? What do you love?
Maybe you’ve worked as an administrative assistant at several companies and have noticed that all these companies have different ways of doing things.
They all might use different kinds of software or have different processes for handling customer complaints. Maybe they all have different goals when it comes to employee training or customer service standards.
If so, these differences might lead them each to need their own set of solutions—and that could mean there’s room for more than one company in this niche!
2. Focus on quality over quantity
In a world of competition, it’s tempting to focus on quantity rather than quality. But as the old saying goes, “If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.”
So instead of trying to be everything for everyone (and therefore nothing for anyone), focus on what you do best and what will make you money. Do this by asking yourself three questions:
- What do your customers value most? If they had no budget constraints or limitations on time or energy, what would they want from your business? That’s where the real opportunities lie.
- Are there ways that your products or services can help them achieve those goals? If so, it’s worth investing in developing those offerings for your clients if it means more repeat business from satisfied customers in the future.
- And finally—are these things enjoyable enough that you’ll stick with them long-term? You may have heard this quote before: “Do what makes money but hate what makes money.”
It’s a good reminder that while having fun isn’t an effective reason to start a company (in fact most entrepreneurs fail because they don’t take themselves seriously enough), doing something purely because it makes us happy can sometimes mean we end up making more money than if we’d been focused solely on profits alone!
3. Build a community around you
Building a community is crucial to the growth of your small business. A community will not only help you gain new customers but also help you retain current ones for future purchases.
You can build this online or offline, depending on what makes sense for the type of business that you operate and what kind of products or services it offers.
- Create an online forum where followers can share stories about their experiences with your product or service and connect with other customers who have used it in similar situations (e.g., parent forums).
- Host events in-person where members are able to meet each other face-to-face (e.g., “speed dating” events where buyers meet sellers).
4. Provide something valuable for free
You can do this in many ways, but the most common is by offering a free e-course or webinar.
If you’re not sure what your audience would be interested in, survey them and ask what they’d like to know more about. Also, consider what expertise you have that could help other people—you could write an article about it or make a video tutorial. There are lots of ways to give away some value for free without hurting your bottom line.
Make it feel special by making sure it’s personalized or unique to the receiver (e.g., personalize the welcome email with their name).
5. Create an online course or an eBook
Create an online course or an ebook. If you haven’t already, create some form of content that your audience can consume on their own time (like a blog post or podcast) or pay for (like a book).
Give them something they can’t get anywhere else. Having this unique piece of content will help you stand out from the crowd and make you look like a rock star in their eyes—ultimately driving sales from customers who are excited about what you have to offer.
Get people to sign up for your email newsletter. Offer the freebie as a way of getting them on your email list so that they can stay informed about whatever else might be going on with your business as well as receive future offers from you—all while making sure they don’t forget who gave them something valuable in return!
6. Use Instagram Stories to give a behind-the-scenes look at your business
As a small business owner, you have a lot of work to do: managing employees, communicating with clients and customers, and staying on top of sales.
But sometimes it’s easy to forget that the people who come into contact with your business only see the surface. Your Instagram stories can help them get a deeper look at what it takes to run your company.
For example: if you sell clothing online, include some shots of the actual process of creating those clothes (from sketches on paper to sewing machines).
If you run an office space for freelancers or local businesses in need of meeting space, take viewers through each room so they can see how big or small it is and what kinds of amenities are available (think comfy chairs and tables, coffee machines).
7. Teach what you know
One of the best ways to build your brand is by teaching what you know. If you’re a social media expert and have written an ebook on how to use Snapchat, turn it into a course or webinar to sell online.
If you’ve been working in social media marketing for years and have seen some success with your own blog, give other people access to what’s helped make your business thrive.
Teaching can also help build confidence in your abilities and create a community that supports each other when times get tough (like when someone misses their first sale).
Plus, teaching gives you more credibility as an expert in the field of marketing or other business areas that are important for growing small businesses like customer service or sales.
You don’t need to wait for the perfect time or money to start growing your small business. You just need to consistently do the right things, and in time, your business will grow.
The most important thing is that you stay focused on what matters most: serving your customers, building a community around yourself, providing a valuable service or product, and giving back in some way.
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