All business owners want to take their businesses to the next level. But how do you find opportunities to grow? The market continues to change as we speak, so you need growth strategies that will stand the test of time. Here are our top 3 business growth strategies for 2023.
1) Create a growth strategy. Forget the philosophy “the riches are in the niches.” Instead, look at your total available market, also known as your total addressable market (TAM). This refers to the maximum opportunity size for a particular product or service. In other words, if every person who could potentially find value in your product or service purchased it, how big would that market be? No one will get 100% of any given market, so you need to think about how you get a larger piece of the market.
Say you sell high-end copy machines in one zip code. You notice clients are holding onto their machines for longer and sales are dropping. You find there are 40,000 businesses in your zip code meaning your TAM is 40,000. You have only a small portion of that market because you’ve built your business selling to companies that pay $5,000 or more for a copy machine. That’s your Serviceable Available Market (SAM). Let’s say there are only 10,000 companies out of the 40,000 total that spend $5,000 on copy machines and not all of them buy from you. In fact, your client roster is only 20% of that market due to competition. With new sales down, you decide to expand your market by selling $2,000 copiers. Now, instead of a prospect market of 10,000, you have a market of 25,000 prospective clients.
Ask yourself how you can apply this strategy to your business. What can you do to get a larger market share? Are there new products or services you can create? Maybe you have a 12-month program you can break down into 12 self-paced courses you can sell. Or perhaps you market to a specific audience like teachers so you can expand to the homeschooling market. This is an example of how you can apply creativity and innovation to grow your business in uncertain times.
2) Improve your marketing. Develop a comprehensive marketing strategy that supports your business goals. Throw out the old marketing plan that rarely changes from year to year and start fresh. Unless you ARE a marketer, the best thing to do is bring in an expert. Hire someone who can take a 10,000-foot view of your business, discuss your business goals with you and create a strategic marketing plan that will provide you with a roadmap to growth.
We work with clients every year to do just that. We look at financial statements from the last three years and current business goals. We audit all external communications to see what is working and what isn’t. We evaluate available human and financial resources for implementation, whether internal or external. Only after all of this do we create the strategy. Why? Because otherwise, the strategy will fail.
You can have a great growth strategy, but if you don’t have the resources to implement it, it’s not a great strategy for you. If your strategy contains things you’ve done before that didn’t work, you need to understand whether the problem was the strategy or the implementation. It’s VERY HARD to be able to be objective about your own business so, if you can, invest in help. And if you can’t, follow the steps just mentioned, making tweaks to your current strategy while setting aside funds to hire someone.
Your marketing strategy doesn’t have to be a January through December strategy. It can start anytime and be as long as you want (preferably at least six months long). You can have an April to March strategy or a September to February strategy. Start where you are and go from there.
3) Focus on your brand. A comprehensive and sustainable brand strategy is the best thing you can do for your business. This includes a true awareness of your brand promise. Your brand promise is what you say about your company to the world and what the world tells you in return about how well you live up to what you say about yourself.
Brand strategy, like public relations, is about relationships with all your stakeholders. Most of us think of branding in terms of what will attract new clients to our business. That’s part of it. But your brand consists of how well-known you are, how liked you are and how trusted you are to deliver what you promise. To your clients. To your employees. To your partners. And to your prospects.
I was once brought in to create a marketing campaign for a company. I asked to do stakeholder interviews, and when I started talking with employees, I heard about everything they felt the company was doing wrong. These were NOT happy employees. I went back to the leadership team and told them that I could create the best marketing campaign ever, but if hundreds of employees were talking to their family and friends with as much frankness as they had with me, the campaign would flop.
We all want our employees to be our biggest fans. To tell others what a good company we run and how we inspire them to bring their best to work. But we can never assume that’s happening. We need to be asking our employees how they feel. Your brand is your reputation. It takes a long time to build but only a moment to damage. Protect it, care for it and help it grow.
If you’d like a free, no-commitment consultation to learn how Team Prosper can help you with business growth strategies, contact us at email@example.com.