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    5 Replies Latest reply on Dec 11, 2008 4:03 PM by EagleEye

    The Definitive Guide to GROWING Your Business During the Economic Crisis

    ZekeLL Adventurer
      You might be wondering why I wrote the word "GROWING" in all caps. Because that is exactly what you need to be doing right now. Many business owners freak out and they hide in their caves waiting for the bad times to pass by. That doesn't make any sense. If you are just waiting until you see the light at the end of the tunnel, your ship will most likely sink.

      I would like to share with you some ideas to grow your business during the economic crisis.

      Profit from your current customers
      As obvious as this idea may be, you will be surprised with the number of business owners that sell a customer just once. Call your previous customers and find out how you can help them. According to statistics, someone who bought from you in the past is five times more likely to buy from you again than a new prospect.

      Offer as much value as you can
      These days, consumers and companies are more careful with their expenses. Give them great deals. It's time to start running some specials!

      Get out and meet people
      Join networking groups, ask your customers for referrals, invite prospects for a coffee. Your chances of growing your business are not very good if you spend most of your day behind your desk.

      Create alliances and find new strategic partners
      Leverage all your relationships. Find other businesses that serve the same market that you do but are not your competitors. Find a way to work together with them and refer business to each other.

      Educate yourself
      If you can afford it, go to seminars and events in your industry. If your budget doesn't allow you to do that, then read some books and blogs. Also contact your chamber of commerce; they will often host business classes. You will need new ideas and knowledge to stand out in a market so competitive.

      Reduce your overhead
      In case you didn't know this already, your overhead is killing you. Go over your last quarter's expenses and analyze each item by asking yourself this question: "is this costing more money than it is making?" If the answer is yes, get rid of it immediately or you will have cashflow problems really soon (if you are not having them already).

      One word of warning: don't cut your marketing budget for those campaigns that are actually working. Some people freak out and their brains stop working. Don't let that happen to you. If something is working, do more of it, not less.

      If you enjoyed this article, visit my blog at www.TheOutsourcingCompany.com/blog for more great tips on entrepreneurship and online marketing.

      Zeke Camusio
      The Outsourcing Company - Creative Web Design Agency
      Blog: www.TheOutsourcingCompany.com/blog
      www.TheOutsourcingCompany.com
      info@TheOutsourcingCompany.com
      (1)877-581-3921 (Available 24/7)
        • Re: The Definitive Guide to GROWING Your Business During the Economic Crisis
          ControlData Newbie
          Another way to grow a company is to take advantage of a collection agency. I work for Control Data Inc. and we can often add in our collection costs into the amount due to our clients. This means that our clients are getting 100% of their funds back and it isnt costing them a dime. Although this type of return requires that you have some customers that havent been paying, every little bit of returns helps. It doesnt take long before the number of accounts collected start adding up. It could make the difference for may companies looking for some extra funds to make it through these hard times. http://www.controldatainc.com

          Curtis Smith
          • Re: The Definitive Guide to GROWING Your Business During the Economic Crisis
            intechspecial Ranger

            Extremely good post, thank you.

            I keep things a little simpler when it comes to keeping above water during economic hurricanes.

            It really is simple. Every person that walks the earth has certain needs that they have to have met every day.

            The basics are food, clothing, and shelter.

            When the economy takes a dive, we still need food clothing and shelter.

            So the plan is this, simply modify your business to meet the needs of the consumer, and match the current state of the economy.

            Obviously, an attorney cannot sale toilet paper, nor should a carpenter start growing corn in his basement.

            An attorney could offer some legal assistance on multiple levels, including community functions, charitable organizations, big business.

            A carpenter could easily offer his hand at the local church, or lift a paint brush to give the walls of the local food shelter a clean look.

            Does this pay? Of course it does not, but you are meeting the consumer where they are at, and they only have finances for basic needs.

            When the economy turns around(and it will), you are sure to be swamped with the calls and requests you get, via your extension in service.

            During the process, you might even learn a thing or two about helping your fellow man, and pick up a buck or two by some that can afford to pay you.

             

            For those of you who do cannot offer anything positive because your business by pure nature is not something your local grandma would appreciate.

             


            I would not worry about your bank account being empty, you need to worry about the emptiness of your humanity.
            • Re: The Definitive Guide to GROWING Your Business During the Economic Crisis
              estradacoach2 Newbie
              This is an excellent post and right on target. Don't forget, though, that now is a great time to review your marketing and advertizing strategies and "turn up the volume" where it will do the most good. So often business owners see a down economy as a time to reduce their marketing. In most cases, I encourage them to keep their marketing going, but with new focus tied to opportunities that emerge in the economic circumstance of the day.

              Also, it is always a good idea to look for new strategic alliances during this kind of economic downturn. Figure out who in your community or market can be your strategic partner in building business for both you and them and then find ways to bring your efforts together.

              Newsday magazine's Jamie Herzlich has run several articles on this topic over the past few months. For more tips and ideas, check out her articles at Newsday.com