7 Tactics For Small Business Success
By their nature, small businesses tend to have limited resources. As a result, the classic small business response is to run from project to project and emergency to emergency boasting about being nimble rather than getting on track to achieve their business objectives.
To succeed, small businesses need a David mindset. Just as the biblical figure David strategically used his slingshot to attack Goliath’s weak spot, you need to maximize your strengths to enable your business to appear larger than it actually is.
Here are seven actionable marketing tactics to get your small business on course to achieve its goals.
- Define your niche. Don’t just use the major category label. Doing so means that you’ll always be small compared to the leader. Actionable Small Business Tactic: Assess the field and determine where there are unmet opportunities. Bear in mind that you don’t want to define your niche so small or obscurely that it’s something people won’t search for. Think in terms of an aspect of an existing topic. Also make sure that there is an opportunity to grow or your business will be limited from the start.
- Have a plan. Many small businesses brag about being nimble. What this often means is that their limited staff are quick to respond to the next issue confronting them. While I don’t want to belittle this practice, the problem is that it makes them myopic. Therefore the business is constantly in a reactive mode and is hindered from moving forward. Actionable Small Business Tactic: Create a business plan. Your goal is to have an actionable strategy that provides a framework for keeping your business on track to grow by building its brand, attracting new customers and closing profitable sales.
- Present your brand consistently. Don’t think branding is only for big corporations with large budgets and that you can’t afford to develop yours. This isn’t necessarily the case. The key is to determine the core attributes of your brand and use them in everything you do. Actionable Small Business Tactic: Always present your company the same way so that everything you do contributes to your overall brand cost-effectively. (Here’s how to build your brand on the cheap.)
- Create effective content. Use your firm’s content marketing to support your marketing efforts. Efficient use of content marketing can help you cast a larger shadow. Central to your efforts should be responding to your prospects’, customers’ and the public’s questions or they won’t buy from your firm. Actionable Small Business Tactic: Plan your content marketing to ensure that every piece is part of a larger strategy that’s integrated with your promotional plan and supports your brand, social media, search and sales.
- Develop social media profiles. As a pint-size player seeking to appear bigger, you need to have a presence on a variety of social media platforms. This doesn’t mean that you should spend all of your time on social media! Actionable Small Business Tactic: Schedule your social media interaction so that you build relationships with influencers, prospects, customers and the public. Think of social media the way you think of your coffee break. Also, make sure that your profiles provide a way for prospects and customers to reach you. This means a physical address, phone number and email.
- Get out of your office and network. People relate to people. You need to get out from behind your computer or counter and engage with others. Actionable Small Business Tactic: Attend the major tradeshows in your niche and local business events. This provides for peer-to-peer networking.
- Manage your time. Time management flies out of the window for many small businesses as they rush to confront the latest issue. The problem with this approach is that you’ll never be in control of your most scarce resource. Even worse for your personal well-being is that you never feel that you’ve accomplished anything. While you may have responded to all of the inquiries, you’ve allowed these requests to derail you from your goals. Actionable Small Business Tip: Schedule time for your key projects including major strategic inititives, content creation and social media interaction. Don’t forget you need to eat well, get exercise and sleep or you won’t be functioning at your best.
To achieve small business success, you must focus your efforts on achieving your goals. This means making every activity count and contribute to your overarching objectives.
What other small business tactics would you add to this list to help them appear larger than they are?
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