When you’re running a small business, it’s easy to get so preoccupied by day-to-day activities and forget to step back and see the bigger picture. However, it’s important to pause and take a good look at how your business is really faring. It’s also necessary to make sure that you’re looking after yourself, so that you can show up as the best version of you. Let’s take a look at seven things that every small business owner should be doing to avoid ensure success.
1) Building Relationships
Building relationships is an essential step in creating a successful business. As the saying goes, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know that counts. Networking not only increases your visibility, it also opens many new doors. Each new person you talk to could be someone in need of your help, and if not, they might connect you to someone else who does. Networking will also help you find inspiration, learning opportunities and possible joint venture partnerships.
In-person networking is important which is why, when possible, you should try to attend events where you will encounter many members of your target audience. However, you should also strive to build relationships online each and every day by showing up on social media, reaching out to business contacts and checking in with prospects.
2) Saying “Thank You”
A little gratitude goes a long way. Whether you’re thanking your staff or your customers, a little thank you note or appreciative email here and there is a great way to make the people around you feel valued and satisfied. This will encourage customers to come back and motivate your staff to keep up the good work.
3) Asking “Who Can Help?”
Business owners often feel as though they need to handle everything themselves, but asking for help, whether that means hiring a mentor or a new member of staff, is one of the best things that you can do.
Hiring a coach or advisor will allow you to fast track your journey and save you from a lot of trial and error. It’s important to have someone who can set an example, show you the way forward and act as a confidant with whom you can share your worries and woes.
Meanwhile, hiring a team member or freelancer to handle certain responsibilities frees up your time to focus on strategy and customer generation, rather than getting bogged down with lower value tasks.
4) Investing in Personal Growth
True entrepreneurs are always hungry to learn. As a business owner, you should always be striving to increase your knowledge and show up as the best possible version of yourself. There’s a reason Warren Buffet claims to spend 80% of his day reading.
Investing in your own personal growth allows you to stay one step ahead of the competition and reduces the risk that your business will become outdated.
5) Nurturing Leads
Just because a prospect says “no” right now doesn’t mean that they’ll say “no” forever. For many, it just means that it’s not quite the right time for them to buy. You should endeavour to stay in touch with your leads and nurture them through email and content marketing. Be relentless about staying at the forefront of their mind so that when they do become ready to buy, you are sat right in front of them, positioned as the obvious choice.
6) Nurturing Existing Customers
A good customer retention rate is essential to a profitable business, so it’s in your best interests to pay attention to your existing customers and keep them coming back for more.
Email newsletters, special promotions and loyalty programs are all effective ways of encouraging your existing customers to buy from you again.
7) Content Marketing
Content marketing is a powerful form of inbound marketing, and more and more business owners are catching on. Creating helpful and informative content for your target audience increases your visibility and thus improves the chances that new customers will find you as they seek answers to their questions. Furthermore, it demonstrates your knowledge and expertise which encourages your audience to trust you. It’s also more cost-effective than traditional forms of advertising, although it can take longer to build your audience and gain traction. With consistency, however, your efforts will surely pay off.
As a small business owner it can often be difficult to know which way to turn. However, by making a habit of the actions listed above, you will be well on your way to building a thriving business with a steady stream of leads and plenty of loyal customers.