How You Can Grow Your Business and Elevate Your Brand
Someone once said that “success is replicable”. Therefore, if you want to get the same results as someone who has gone before you, all you have to do is do what they did, with some modifications to suit your unique situation of course.
Most businesses that have enjoyed tremendous success often had to replicate the tactics that other successful businesses deployed. While there may be a few other factors at play –such as product uniqueness, market demand, and so on– most business success strategies are similar.
If you have a business that you’re looking to grow and some more zeros to your bottom line, then this article is for you. Let’s jump in, shall we?
Understand Your Audience
You probably know this, but it bears reiterating. Who is your ideal customer? How old are they? Where do they work? What’s their income? Where do they live? What do they do for fun? Are they married or single? Do they have kids?
Are they interested in extreme sports? What drives them? And most importantly, what problem is your product or service solving? By the time you’re done figuring out your audience’s persona, you should be able to come up with a story about them that looks like this:
“John is a 30 to 40-year-old professional male who is in top physical condition, works in the service and consulting industry, drives a £25,000-£40,000 car. He lives in a 4-bed duplex with his wife and 2-3 kids in a middle-class tranquil neighbourhood with great schools, good security, and has professionals as neighbours. His idea of unwinding is watching football or a comedy TV show, reading a good book, and occasionally driving fast cars at the racetrack. He’s happy with his life but aspires to more in terms of work accomplishments, promotions, and personal fitness. Most importantly, he really wishes that he can spend more time with his family instead of coming home late every night”.
Based on the story above, it’s easy to spot John’s motivations, aspirations, and needs. With this information, you can then create solutions, services, or products that will help with his aspirations.
Most importantly, because you understand him, you’ll be able to craft marketing materials that address those pain points –for example, how your product or service can help him free up 2 hours a day that he can spend at home– and solve his problems.
Develop a Brand
It’s important to develop and figure out your brand’s perception. Some brands are flamboyant and colourful like Monster and Red Bull energy drinks. Some are altruistic and people-centred like Heinz. Some, like IKEA, are artistic and elegant. Toyota vehicles are perceived as practical and reliable and are marketed as such. They’re never marketed as performance vehicles.
Ferrari and Rolls Royce, while they’re both considered luxury vehicles, are perceived differently. Ferrari is considered a sports or performance vehicle, while Rolls Royce is perceived as luxurious comfort and a status car.
You drive one when you need the thrill of speed, and the other when you want to ride in maximum comfort and be seen as super-wealthy. Do you see the trend? Now do some thinking on your own. Pick a product or brand that you’re familiar with and say the first thing that comes to your mind.
That’s how powerful brand perceptions are, and why you need to determine how you want your brand to be perceived. If you need help, there are 12 brand archetypes that you can check out so you can have an idea of what your brand’s perception should look like.
At the end of the day, customers should be able to associate your brand with one word. Be careful about this part of the growth process because it’s hard to change the consumer’s perception of your brand once it becomes popular.
RIGHT TO ERASURE
Understanding and adhering to one's right to erasure (also referred to as "the right to be forgotten") in today's data-driven business world is of critical importance. Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), individuals have the right to ask for the deletion or removal of personal data where there is no compelling justification for its continued processing. As a business, it is your duty to put processes in place that enable you to meet such requests. Failing to do so could result in irreparable harm to your brand reputation. Consult a legal expert regularly in order to remain compliant with data protection and privacy laws, which will enhance both your brand image and customer trust by giving them peace of mind that their personal data is being handled responsibly and transparently.
Hire Excellent Talent
The next step in growing your business is hiring the right talents for your business. What kind of people are you looking to hire to work in your business? Do they need to have a degree? If yes, what fields? What other traits and qualities are you looking for? Most importantly, what are the ideal qualifications and qualities for the various job roles?
For example, if you’re looking to hire an accountant, you not only need someone with an ACCA, you also want someone who has experience working for organisations that are similar in size to yours. If they have industry experience, even better as it means they understand the nuances and unique accounting challenges in your industry.
You also need to make sure that you've got a company director and secretary in place. One of the key responsibilities of the company is to ensure the smooth running of the business from a legal point of view, and these two roles cover that.
Prioritise Proven Revenue Sources and Seek Ways to Improve Them
Listen, it’s more difficult to acquire new customers than it is to sell to current or old buyers. More interestingly, customers who already bought for you are always open to buying more products and services from you. So, focus on your current customer base, and see if there are ways to further optimise that customer base.
Come up with great offers that they can’t say no to. If you have to develop a new product that complements the one they already have, then do that. Incentivise them to refer new customers to your business. For instance, you could offer to give them discounts, rebates, or commissions on every new customer they refer to you.
The important thing is to turn your customers into your brand evangelists, and a voluntary sales force. This is how you spend a mere 5 percent and get back 95 percent returns. People trust recommendations from family and friends. Use that to your advantage.
Optimise Customer Experience
When new and old customers do business with your company, how do they feel? Are they happy and satisfied? Or annoyed, unhappy, and dissatisfied? You better aspire to the former.
Focus on building the best customer experience in your industry. This means adopting the mantra “the customer is always right”, even when they are wrong. Assume all responsibilities and trade no blames. Build processes that make buying from and interacting with your business a cakewalk for your customers, and teach your staff how to communicate with customers.
From your customer support, to order fulfilment to the returns process, your customer services should be so seamless that people are always delighted after having any contact with you. As a rule, aspire to leaving your customers happier than before they had any interaction with you.
Identify Profitable Marketing Channels
What are the best marketing channels and advertising media for your ideal customer? Is it digital, traditional, or an integrated channel? If it’s digital, which channel is it? Is it paid ads, search engines, social media, email, or video? If it’s traditional, is it TV, radio, newspapers, or billboards? Are they likely to attend industry conferences and trade shows?
Where does your ideal customer hang out, and where are you likely to get their full attention? Find and identify the best marketing channels. Then, focus on fully engaging them in those channels.
The truth is your revenue growth is often directly proportional to the number of people who see and interact with your marketing channels. If you want to be known, then you’ve got to be out there in front of people’s faces and getting known.
Business growth is possible if you do the necessary things. Every popular and booming business with huge bottom lines and revenues did a version of these same things. They took these steps and through sheer grit, effort, and a tiny slice of luck, transformed their business.
If you want a booming business that’s seen as an industry leader, this is the process that you need to follow to achieve that dream. You can build a business that transforms and impacts the world. Good luck.