There is no denying that we are currently in a global financial decline which is causing people to spend less and companies to produce less. However, this situation does not mean you should throw in the towel or stand still and do nothing until things blow over.
Let me share a secret with you. To create a strategic plan to help you succeed and thrive in your business no matter what the economic conditions is not complicated, nor does it have to be overwhelming. It just requires a bit of advance planning.
You see, the main reason why some business owners are not being affected very much by today’s market is because they have long- and short-term marketing and growth plans. In addition, their short term plans can be quickly shifted around to accommodate day-to-day market fluctuations.
The most common way to gauge your success is by having systems to track everything you do in your business. This will allow you to know which services or products are bringing in the most profits and subsequently how much money you get to keep (your net income).
If you have been caught ill-prepared for the current financial turmoil, and are having cash flow problems don’t worry. Today is a new day, a new beginning to remedy your management shortcomings. If you have been inconsistent with marketing planning and have overlooked the establishment of a sound business growth system, I can offer a quick remedy that you can implement to help you weather these lean times. Starting…NOW!
Here are a few ways to increase cash flow and your net income:
1. Price your services for profit. Many business owners start cutting their prices, and though this strategy provides more immediate income, it hurts you in the long run. Do not cut your prices; instead increase your value. Even standing in a financial quagmire, people want value. I believe your tactic should be to reduce your customers’ fear of spending and increase value by offering a stronger guarantee, a better return policy, more access to you and/or your staff, a better payment plan and so on.
2. Establish invoice systems. You’ll get your money more quickly and consistently.
3. Drop projects that are not bringing in money. Go over your reports and either drop or postpone any project that is currently causing cash drain.
4. Spend most of your time promoting or selling income-generating services and products.
5. Increase efficiency of your marketing dollars. Increase marketing tactics (“systems”) that have proven to be profitable. As loyalties loosen, your competitors’ customers are more willing to jump ship.
6. Add a new marketing channel. If you are promoting online, then venture into offline marketing and vice versa. If you are marketing via print, then pick up your cell phone and follow up. Your tactical mix will depend on who you are targeting, but bear in mind those solo business owners who show their tenacity in the coming months will be the ones who increase their market share as competitors drop off. Now is the time for you to extend or complement your existing marketing strategy.
7. Find out what your market wants. It’s crucial that you know your clients. Make sure your offer is on target with crystal clear benefits and a distinct, differentiating feature from other aspects of your business. One of the best ways I know to find out what your niche market is willing to buy right now is by conducting a survey.
There are different survey types depending on where your customer resides and how they operate. You can run a telephone, email or main page survey. Use the results to craft a unique message, create a new product or service and beat your competition.
Hint: When you speak to your clients on the phone, weave in a few fact-finding questions or ask them at the end of your call to do an informal survey. You also can run an email survey to keep costs down, or you can use email combined with a web-based software for surveys. Consider putting up a survey on your main Web page or on your “Thank You” or “Squeeze” pages.
This article will not have any power unless you integrate the great ideas I have shared. Make a promise to yourself and your business to integrate at least one of these strategies into your business in the next 30 days. If you make more than one of these changes, you’ll see things happen even faster and not have to worry about where that next check is coming from.
If you are ready to improve your small business cash flow go to http://www.ezbusinessgrowth.com/fsm to discover easy ways to build a consistently profitable solo business around your lifestyle and with less time commitment.
by Yvette S
Yvette Syversen makes business building easy for women entrepreneurs and small business owners so they can end their day with time to spare — time for them, for their family and most importantly time to enjoy the fruits of their labor.
A business strategy expert, Yvette knows how to turn the â€œbusynessâ€ of your business into profitability with her proven methods. Get more information by visiting http://www.ezbusinessgrowth.com