Do you sometimes just wish you could sprinkle some Fairy Dust and wave that Magic Wand and business would all just happen? It’s become pretty clear that there are NO shortcuts, Cliff notes or cutting corners to success today.
Everyone that I know is putting in some serious time, effort and energy to make their business success happen. There are no guarantees of success even if you have a hot product or service anymore. Just look at Borders or Croc’s. Never take your eye off the ball, if you want to get a piece of it.
According to data gathered by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics most failures of new businesses occur within two years of their existence. The data also shows that across different sectors 66 percent of new businesses were still operating 2 years after startup. After 4 years 44 percent were still operating. These rates of survival are consistent across various industries.
Here are 5 key areas that can greatly impact a small business making it past that two year mark and hopefully that 4 year mark especially in today’s business landscape. Having a product or service that has a clear need to fill.
Although people are spending less, they are still consuming. People are still buying and using the staples and basics, so focus on providing innovative, value based ways for people to save time, save money, be more efficient and create a fun experience.
Being ready to accept business. Make sure your website, communications chain and response systems are in place, so people can do business with you in an easy, seamless, timely way.
Having an integrated marketing plan. You must blend the traditional and social marketing platforms to extend your reach and be where your customers are. Email marketing, Blogging, Facebook and Twitter are not negotiable anymore, they are a must. Hire someone to help you with this.
Creating a consistent sales strategy. Building relationships and networking is how we earn the right to ask people for their business. Match your solutions with customer needs and solve problems, fear and fill needs.
Network as much and as often as you can in-person and online.
The importance of networking in person and online is more important today than ever before. Turning connections into actionable, tangible sales or referrals is directly related smart networking. Join, engage and connect others.
Take an honest inventory of your process NOW and make whatever changes, improvements and innovations are necessary for you and your business to be relevant and ready to survive and thrive.
Deborah Shane is the Author of Career Transition-make the shift, a media host, speaker and branding consultant and strategist. She hosts a weekly Blog and is in her third year of hosting a weekly business radio show on blogtalkradio.com, which has over 32k downloads. She writes for several national business, career and marketing blogs, and websites including smallbiztrends.com, careerealism.com, BusinessInsider.com, Personalbrandingblog.com and blogher.com. Deborah delivers smart, no-nonsense ideas and solutions, which make her a popular goto resource for clients, national media and influential blogs.
Connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Blogtalkradio @Deborah Shane, or on the web at DeborahShane.com, or DeborahShaneToolBox.com.