Making 2017 a Success
I've often found that New Year can be a bit of a let-down. More on the celebrations of New Year's Eve admittedly, but also the pressure of having to promise to be healthier, more successful, happier, more fulfilled... can make January a bit of damp squib - and if things don't start off amazingly well, well, the feeling of failure isn't great!
Then add being responsible for promoting a business and ensuring that both existing customers and prospects look favourably on your brand. The pressure is on!
But it doesn't have to be awful, and baby or just small steps really can make a difference. My top tips for reducing the load:
1. Get your existing customers to help steer
It really is worthwhile to look at how you can work with your existing customer base on how to nurture them best and also attract new business.
When was the last time you asked your customers how happy they are with the service they receive and what would/could make it better?
Gaining insight can be incredibly valuable. Add into the mix, 'what would you like to buy from us if you could?' and you might even open-up an avenue for an addition to your portfolio.
You can actually find out quite a bit from speaking to just six or eight loyal customers. Asking them a few questions and then analysing the responses - objectively! How do they like to be communicated with? What don't they like? When would they use the competition over you? ... feedback from questions like this can really help identify current challenges and opportunities to nurture your existing customer base and promote the right things in the right way to your prospects.
2. Get your employees to help steer
Fair enough, not every business has a huge number of employees to lean on, but even if your business is just you, perhaps there are partners or suppliers that you've worked with who know your business well enough to think outwardly on what they feel is working well and what isn't.
Again, you don't need many people to ask, two or three employees (or others) can be enough. What are they proud of? What do they believe the business does best? What feedback have they received directly?
Consider the responses - anything surprising? Anything that can be built on, or needs to change rapidly?
3. What's the competition up to?
Planning and knowing where best to spend time, energy and perhaps money can only really be done with confidence if you know where you stand in the market.
Take a step back and objectively view three of your competitors - looking at their website and perhaps social media engagement. What are they saying? What's their key message and/or differentiator / USP? (take a look at the standing out from the competition blog series for more of a nudge)
Then take a look at what did and didn't work last year to patch all the information together. Use January as a leaping board for the rest of the year (you don't have to start achieving straight away, but you do need to focus on achieving at some point!)
Lastly, set yourself a juicy BHAG - Big Hairy Audacious Goal. Where do you want the business to be by December? Dream big. Just one dream. Get excited - it CAN happen!
And if I can help at any point along the way, please do get in touch!
Good luck xxx