Owning a business that’s primed to grow is every business owner’s dream. But with rapid growth, often comes the exponential growth of problems as well.
So, how do smart business owners scale their business without betting the farm? Here are six ways to scale your startup in 2017, that don’t involve a crash and burn.
Scaling Tip #1: Slow down
Yes, we’re still talking about growing your business. Although it might seem counterintuitive, sometimes the best thing you can do is slow down and focus on your core processes and concepts first.
In order to scale your business in a way that’s effective, you need to have your core business running smoothly. By slowing down, you’re able to spread your ideas and beliefs among your team and your customer base in a cohesive way.
By attempting to grow before you’ve got the basics down, you could end up sending the wrong message about your brand, which leaves you with a huge mess on your hands.
Scaling Tip #2: Test everything, and then test again
Before you take your startup to the next level, it’s imperative that you understand what’s working and what isn’t. The best way to figure this out is through regular monitoring and testing.
Do you really understand your market? Are they responding to your products and services in the best way possible, or could you get better results with a few minor adjustments?
By doing regular market testing of your products and services, you can mitigate your risks and come to understand your target audience even better before you grow.
“It’s not always necessary to learn things through trial and error. By running tests on your website and your marketing channels and by doing market research on new ideas before you launch, you can save yourself a world of trouble,” says the Marketing Director for Inc For Free.
Scaling Tip #3: Automation is your friend
Are you still wasting time doing everything on your business checklist manually? Then you’re probably not ready to scale.
Thanks to technology, a world of automation tools to help you manage your websites, your marketing, remote workers and more is virtually at your fingertips. If you haven’t made friends with automation tools like Hootsuite, Hubspot, and Salesforce then you’re wasting valuable time you could be spending on growing your business.
Scaling Tip #4: Focus on company culture
Company culture isn’t just a buzzword. It was important in 2016 and it will be even more important in 2017.
It’s no secret that the success (or failure) of your business relies heavily on the people you have on your team. And, today’s top talent, especially Millennials, care about more than just a paycheck.
There’s a reason companies like Google and Facebook are regularly cited as the best places to work; it’s because they focus heavily on company culture.
The bottom line is, if you want to attract top talent, you need to be a top place to work for. Won’t scaling your business be so much easier if you have a rockstar team in your corner? Of course it will.
Scaling Tip #5: Ramp up your marketing efforts
It doesn’t matter if you have the best idea, product or service in the world; if people don’t know about it, your business won’t be growing any time soon. Too many startups make the mistake of trying to scale their business with a lackluster marketing plan.
A spokesperson for PinProsPlus, a promotional products company suggests, “The best thing you can do when you’re trying to scale a business, is put more steam behind your marketing efforts. The more people you get in front of, the more money you have coming in the door.”
Don’t make the mistake of killing your marketing budget or waiting until things are just perfect to ramp up your marketing efforts. Focus more on marketing now, and you’ll have more money to invest in other areas of your business later.
Scaling Tip #6: Don’t ignore technology
Technology may not be your forte, but even if your line of business isn’t tech related, you need to stay up on current tech trends in order to scale your business effectively.
Recent studies show that nearly 97% of people ages 18-34 visit websites on their mobile devices. If your site still isn’t mobile friendly, then you could be losing out on important business.
If you’ve ignored business technology trends in the past, 2017 is the year to stay informed, make sure your web presence is up to snuff and pay attention to what’s happening in mobile marketing.
Will 2017 be the year you take your business to the next level?
Scaling your business isn’t for the faint of heart. It takes equal parts strategy, hustle and teamwork. But by following these six tips, you can avoid some of the common causes of burnout, and make 2017 the year you grow beyond your wildest dreams.
Just remember, when you hit a brick wall (and you will at some point), find a mentor or look to outside business resources to help you get over the hurdle. After all, Rome wasn’t build in a day, nor was it built by some dude flying solo.Business & Finance Articles on Business 2 Community