So here it is the end of the year and despite your best efforts, you haven’t quite hit your revenue goals. What do you do?
a) Panic or b) Give up?
How about we go with c) None of the above.
It’s sort of like that old saying from Alfred E. Newman of Mad Magazine: What, me worry? Worry? Not us. Here are four things you can do right now to deal with that unwelcome financial situation – with one bonus idea.
1. Have a sale: The tried and true way to get more money in the door right now is to have a sale. People love sales, they love saving money, and they will definitely flock to your store to take advantage of a sweet deal.
A few caveats:
- Lead with a loss leader: As you likely know, a loss leader is a popular product that, when put on sale, catches people’s eye. Putting one of your best-selling products on sale will do just that for you. But, and this is critical, ensure that other products make up for the “loss” you will take on this leader.
- Help them help you: Of course, you have to get the word out about your sale – as you do, be sure that your best customers not only know about it, but maybe even are given preferential treatment.
- Be different: Everyone had a Black Friday or a Cyber Monday sale. You need to be different. Have a Super Sunday sale, or a black tie optional evening event, for example.
2. Market your business, and then market it some more: Aside from the sale, if you want to increase revenues quickly before the end of the year then you have to create some buzz. Market your business online and off. Market it places where you have never marketed it before. Try a guerilla marketing trick you have never used.
By trying new things and marketing and advertising in new places, you will expose your business to new people, and that’s the ticket.
3. Get a loan: You have yearly revenue goals because you have expenses. You run a business. Given that, sometimes you can’t leave such things to chance or the whims of a sale or the market, so what can you do to ensure certainty?
Get a loan.
Your options are many. You could get a short-term loan, a line of credit, a loan against receivables, etc. What we know is that your bank wants to help your business succeed.
4. Cut overhead: The other side of the financial balance sheet equation, when increasing revenue isn’t possible, is to reduce your overhead by cutting expenses. The key here is to be sure that the expenses you do cut are not ones that will eat into revenue. Don’t cut that marketing budget!
And finally, our bonus tip:
5. Let it go: A goal is just that – a goal. If your situation is such that your revenue goals are not a matter of life and death and really are “just” goals, then you might want to redo your calculations, say that whatever you made this year is good enough, and call it a day.
Learn how to call it a day and make the worry go away: How to Enjoy Vacation and Keep Your Business Humming
What, you worry?
Steven D. Strauss is one of the world's leading experts on small business and is a lawyer, writer, and speaker. The senior small business columnist for USA Today, his Ask an Expert column is one of the most highly-syndicated business columns in the country. He is the best-selling author of 17 books, including his latest, The Small Business Bible, now out in a completely updated third edition. You can also listen to his weekly podcast, Small Business Success.© Steven D. Strauss.
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