Ideas to Grow Your Business During Your Start Up
The creativity stage of business is the most exciting stage because this is the time where you realize your passion and develop your business concept. The main focus of this stage is client acquisition and delivering your products and services. Typically in this phase finances are limited and most business owners are operating under a shoestring budget so the number one thing you should be focusing on is making the cash register ring.
In business, sales are the lifeblood of every organization and as business owners, you need to find ways to generate leads; convert those leads into sales and deliver exceptional service so the customers continue to come back. This should be your number one focus.
Unfortunately, too many business owners spend too much time trying to establish their brand and outward identity before they develop any sales and marketing systems that generate results. Your goal in this stage is to develop sales and marketing programs that anyone in your organization can execute or can be put on autopilot. Here are some ideas:
Low Cost of No Cost Marketing Methods – there are a number of different marketing tactics that you can use that cost you little or no money. Try a few different options to test what brings in the best results and remember to be consistent and use those tactics more than once.
Hand out Gift Certificates to Business Associates – There are many other businesses that market to your ideal buyer. Perhaps it is your accountant, your lawyer, a neighboring retailer or your local community leaders. Print out gift certificates and allow these business associates to offer their customers a free consultation, a free gift or an added bonus from you. This allows you to have access to their customers, allow potential customers to test you out and builds good will with the business associates. A win – win – win situation for everyone.
Use the Media – One of the least expensive ways to market your business is to grab the attention of the media so learn about public relations marketing and how to get instant coverage so everyone knows about you and your business.
Allow people to sample your products and/or services – Since people will be unfamiliar with you allow them to test our your products and services by giving it away for free. This can be in the form of a sample, a free consultation, a free workbook or sample chapters of your new book. The goal is to give them a taste so they will become loyal customers.
Create Refer a Friend Program’ Encourage people to recommend your business and refer your services to their networks. Create a formalized program that motivates them to refer you and make it a point to make those associates feel like VIPs. Some examples are a buy 1 get 1 free program, a special discount on ongoing services or a small gift.
Offer a return customer program – Once you have them in your doors, you don’t want them to leave so focus some time to create a “bounce back” program so your customers return. It could be a coupon to be used towards their next purchase, an accumulation of rebate dollars or a loyalty program.
During this first stage, your # 1 focus is bringing in customers so spend your time on business building activities and watch your business soar!