Small business confidence has taken a hit lately and many are doing it harder than they should. Here Peter Hanley gives you some ideas to help move ahead
Let’s look at the world first
When I look at the world economy I first look at the leaders and the problems they have.
In the USA you have Donald Trump who spends time fighting off allegations of fraud and corruption, sparring with his Chinese opposite, trying to stop a Caravan driving through a wall and a wife not talking to him.
In the UK we have Theresa May fighting Brexit with everything she has and trying to control the past immigration problems. Her tangles with the EU are coming to a head.
Australia has changed Prime Ministers regularly of late so no one has a chance to settle in and finish a job.
You can only wonder why the attention has been taken away from business?
So what of the small to
medium business owner?
Increased regulations on labour, health, local conditions have all added to the pile of things we need to sort out before we can conduct our business.
When our focus moves from marketing and selling to administration and clerical duties something is going to suffer and that is profit.
I can’t fix a President but let’s focus on you, the business owner
The issues that have made the biggest changes, that I see, are Online trading payment ability, Social media and the rise of the
If you are not seriously looking at these issues and working them to suit you it may just mean failure on your part and we don’t want that.
Keep your attention on the most important issues to you and your business.
Things are changing so here I provide some important aspects you may not have noticed and can apply.
We all have the Amazon effect in some way unless you are selling a service only. Sales through Amazon and similar outlets continue to grow, so you need to actively compete. If you are selling physical products someone is getting part of your business and hence a bit of your income.
Can you set up an online store and compete
The Mega stores
This would also relate to the Megastores, an example is ALDI where the arrival in any town has an effect. You could even go to the lower level and include Starbucks and Hamburgers. In your country, you will see the superstores with massive marketing budgets and slim margins pounding away at your customers, the best you can hope for is poor service and delivery in the equation. The closer you are can also enhance your problem
So don’t ignore it, fight with Service and local marketing efforts
Social media and target marketing
The word is remarketing and it is having a big influence on your business
If you don’t know what this is it is the advertisements that pop up after you visit a site on the internet associated with a product. Try any major brand and see what happens.
Say I search Gucci handbags and all of a sudden Adverts are popping into my news feed or it seems everywhere I look thus
creating a possible dilemma at Xmas
As my wife follows my news feed, she may get an inkling at my gift intentions, but, that is the least of it.
Your customers may go online to price check or search products at another site and will get bombarded with popups taunting them away from you on an impulse or a whim.
There is nothing you can do but join them and pay the price to compete.
Most of the major companies are spending over 20% of their marketing budget on retargeting for Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn etc.
You can read more on this problem in a recent blog I wrote on remarketing
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin all must do’s
It is not enough to set up a Social Media site and forget it, you may as well not do it at all unless you are proactive.
As a marketer, I often cut to the Facebook site to see what they are up to.
If there is nothing there I move customers, it’s as simple as that.
It is relatively easy to program posts well into the future to save the daily struggle and I have more on a template approach here
While I do suggest being in all my recommendation is to use just one in your major focus. Instagram can be as effective, if not more so than Facebook whilst others choose LinkedIn. Just focus on one to get that working as good as possible
This is a real game changer with Instant credit. Most of the market is cash strapped particularly the under 25 set who still maintain a constant need for clothes and accessories. This means they will shop on credit with instant money where and when they can. If you are not in the market you will miss out.
Yes, it cost you about 10% of the sales value which is more than the 2.5% credit card fees but a hell of a lot more than no sale at all.
Many, if not most of the majors are now offering this service so pulling customers away from you.
I reckon it’s a do or be dammed outcome.
While the world leaders can’t maintain focus how do you expect to do it better. The answer is doing the things that will have the most return or benefit and concentrate 80% on that until you have it working as you want it
A lot of free training at Wealthy Affiliate will teach you how to do things to grow your business on the Net