Business planning for a prosperous year

To say the least, many small business owners are going through unprecedented times. Nevertheless, the coming year offers new possibilities and opportunities. Here are 5 ways to reinvent or re-examine your strategy that could help you in the next 12 months.

See yourself as a start-up company

No one knows your business better than you. What would you do differently if you could go back in time, tell yourself everything you know now, and start from scratch? What aspects of your business would you change? What would you do to build an even stronger business?

You might consider doing the following:

Withdraw unprofitable product or service lines, or launch new products or services

Close certain divisions of your business that are no longer profitable

Change the palette of specialist skills you need

Invest in research and development

Consider whether you can expand your product or service line by adding something new or different. You can also take a new approach to selling to customers with ideas like a trial offer, free sample, special price, or extra service. If you like an idea, consider making it a reality in the coming year.

Consider different marketing techniques

Think about how you promote your business and what you could do differently to market yourself to customers. Review your past promotional tactics and determine which have worked best, and at what cost. You may find that some inexpensive methods work well for your business, such as:

Communicate directly with potential customers – a short call and a friendly tone can go a long way

Strengthen your social media presence

Launch email campaigns to your current customers

Ask your customers to recommend you (word of mouth)

You may conclude that some of the best marketing ideas require time rather than money. Consider taking the time to review the way you promote your business.

Refine your sales techniques with your current customers

Selling your products or services to your current customers may be easier because you already know them well and have bonded with them. Ask them what their needs are and consider offering them an incentive (eg, a discount, an early payment offer, or even an advance notice of a new product or service).

Other tactics to sell more to your current customers:

Communicate with customers you haven’t seen in a while

Analyze customer consumption behavior to offer them additional products or services

Offer product demonstrations (if applicable)

Double-check your costs and pricing to make sure every sale is profitable. Cost overruns, excessive losses, product returns, and low-margin incremental revenue from existing customers are unlikely to help your business thrive in the long run.

Find new customers

Another solution is to increase your customer base. Consider doing the following:

Sell ​​your products or services online on your website

Use third-party marketplaces, like Amazon, or industry specialist websites

Establish strategic partnerships with complementary companies

Expand your customer prospecting area (e.g., nearby street or town)

It is very likely that the profile of your new customers will be similar to that of your current customers. Determine what your ideal potential customer looks like (eg, a customer who buys in large quantities or on a repeat basis), then research the best ways to establish contact.

If you think you need to make a change to make your business even better next year, consider reviewing your business model to identify new opportunities.

Find new business models

If you think you need to make a change to make your business even better next year, consider reviewing your business model to identify new opportunities. Consider one of the ideas below:

Explore high-growth sectors and consider entering these sectors

If you have useful or interesting content, you could possibly make money with services like Google AdSense

Subcontract to other companies for short-term contracts

Sell ​​your expertise online, at an hourly rate

Make sure that any major changes to your business model are done in collaboration with your employees and advisors to obtain feedback and develop a business planning. Do not hesitate to seek professional advice if necessary.

Next steps

In the next 12 months, there will probably be a lot of change. Take the lead as much as possible by taking the time to decide where to invest your time and money. Then, implement your customer, product, or service business model to determine what works and what doesn’t.

By Naveed

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