There’s never been a better time to start a business. There are more tools, opportunities, and resources than ever before. However, growth is still challenging. Anyone can launch a business – not everyone can scale a business. If you want to be a successful entrepreneur and business owner, you must learn how to grow.
Try These Growth Tactics
Growing a business requires vision and ambition. However, those two things aren’t enough. You also need to embrace the tactical strategies required to put your business on the right path. Here are a few important ones:
1. Define Your Target Audience
Any successful business starts with a specific niche. In other words, you need a targeted audience to build your marketing and advertising campaigns around.
Having a specific audience makes customer acquisition much easier. It allows you to use targeted language and really focus on specific pain points and desires. Ideally, your target audience will consist of people with money and very pressing/urgent pain points or desires.
This makes it easier to craft compelling messaging and sell products or services at scale.
2. Create a USP
Chances are, you’re not creating a visionary product in your industry. In other words, you’re not establishing a brand new product category that customers have never seen before. You’re most likely creating your own version of a product or service that already exists. And thus, the question is, how do you stand out?
If your messaging is identical to every other brand in the marketplace, you’re not going to have much success. You’ll find yourself swimming upstream just to make a few sales. What you need is a unique sales proposition (USP) that sets your business apart and engages your specific target audience.
Typically a USP follows a formula like this: “I help [the audience] achieve [desire] without [pain they want to avoid].” This might look like: “I help professional athletes recover from knee injuries 25 percent faster so that they can get out of the rehab room and start playing sooner.”
3. Invest in Growth Marketing
If you’re serious about growing your business, you need more than a basic marketing strategy. You need to invest in growth marketing.
Growth marketing differs from traditional marketing strategies (which simply focus on top-of-the-funnel tactics). It emphasizes evidence-based decision-making and prioritizes the entire customer lifecycle from awareness to advocacy. Strategies, campaigns, and techniques are constantly tested and optimized. Everything is based on data and analytics, not gut feelings.
4. Emphasize Customer Experience
It’s not enough to sell a good product. There are dozens of businesses that already sell good products at reasonable prices in your industry. If you want to stand out, you have to use your small size to your advantage and prioritize the customer experience.
“Compared with large companies, small businesses are nimble and often better able to see, anticipate, and respond to their customers’ needs,” says Mike DeHetre, VP of Product Development at Travelers. “The most successful small businesses exploit this advantage by bringing new and innovative products and services to market more quickly and developing and nurturing long-term customer relationships.”
Good customer experience leaves a lasting impression that extends far beyond the useful life of the product or service. It’s something people remember, talk about, and recall when making repeat purchases in the future. By prioritizing it within your business, you can achieve growth much faster.
5. Stay Lean
Do yourself a favor and remain as lean as possible. This gives you the most flexibility and versatility. It also helps you protect your profit margins.
One of the best ways to stay lean is by keeping a manageable payroll and not tying up too much of your cash flow in salaried employees. While there’s nothing wrong with tactfully hiring salaried employees, most positions can be filled with freelancers and independent contractors these days.
When you outsource, you don’t have to fork over money for payroll tax, benefits, workers’ compensation insurance, Social Security, health insurance, etc. As a result, you can often save as much as 25 to 50 percent per hire.
Ready, Set, Grow
Growth doesn’t happen by accident. If you want your business to grow at a sustainable pace, you’ll need to embrace the growth tactics outlined above. By no means is this an exhaustive list, but it’s a great place to begin. Continue to invest in your business, and you’ll reap the rewards for years to come.