If you want to grow your business in 2016 (and who doesn’t?), you need to develop a business growth plan based on strategies that have proven track records of success. Start by setting SMART goals, then create a plan that will help you achieve those goals. Keep working your plan until you’re able to consistently grow your business. To that end, the following lists ten ways to grow your business in 2015.
1. Be a guest
Organizations, media outlets, and bloggers are always on the lookout for relevant guest speakers, columnists, interviewees, and blog posters. Make a list of the most popular avenues your target audience reads and events they attend, then reach out to organizers, editors, bloggers, site owners, and influencers to offer your expertise as a guest. This is a great strategy for getting in front of hundreds or even thousands of potential customers.
2. Dedicated direct-mail marketing
Too many small businesses send a single postcard then give up on direct-mail marketing after getting disappointing results. However, repetition is critical to direct-mail success. Commit to a year-long direct-mail marketing strategy in which you send targeted promotions to the same mailing list via postcards, brochures, sales, letters, and more, and your ROI should increase along with your send volume.
3. Ultra-targeted advertising
Look for highly-relevant trade publications, hyperlocal blogs, topic-specific websites, and advanced targeting capabilities offered by search and social marketing agencies to take advantage of ultra-targeted marketing in 2016. If you’re not an expert in targeting, hire someone who is to maximize your ROI.
4. Revamped social media presence
How dedicated are you to your Facebook page? Twitter? Pinterest? Houzz? LinkedIn? Which is the most popular social media network in your industry, and which offers the best ROI? Find out, then make sure your social media efforts not only rival, but beat your competitors to increase business in 2016.
5. Host a branded, relevant event
What types of events do your customers attend? Whether they love trade shows, conferences, sporting events, barbecues, concerts, or other events, you can host your own event and plaster your brand on everything from the marketing postcards and program booklets to the website and the stage.
6. Get good PR
Study what industry-relevant journalists write about, and consider ways you can fill knowledge gaps with interesting, useful information their readers will rave about. Pitch your content or your availability as an interviewee to the most popular influencers. You’ll need to build relationships, which takes time, but the return from a single mention can be enormous.
7. Evaluate your marketing materials
Has your target audience evolved over the years? Are you struggling to reach younger generations? Perhaps it’s time to give your brand and marketing materials a makeover. Redefining who you are and what you do – or at least focusing on who you do it for – can help you grow your business this year.
8. Participate in customer communities
Where do your customers congregate online? Reddit? Facebook? Industry forums? Be wherever your customers are found, and actively participate in their communities. Do not spam; instead, be a valuable community member and customers will find you.
9. Reposition products for new audiences
Do you offer a product or service that can be repositioned for a completely new audience (without losing your current customer base)? This is a great way to find new customers!
10. Be a useful resource
Launch an informative blog, print an interesting how-to booklet, or start your own YouTube educational channel. Become a useful resource for your customer base, and you’ll earn trust, credibility, authority – and sales.Business & Finance Articles on Business 2 Community