According to the latest Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index, optimism among small business owners is at its highest since 2008. Jobs are expected to increase, and it is also anticipated that the financial situation will improve going forward. Here is a list of 5 quick ways that can help you take advantage of this positive economic climate, grow your small business and boost profitability.
- Look Bigger Than You Are: A professional image is crucial in winning over new clients. Forbes has listed 5 easy-to-do things that can improve your image, including creating a professional website, email address and logo.
- Have a Professional Team: Instead of being a one-man army who is handling everything from customer relations to product development, employ a team of professionals to handle specific aspects of your business. If your business is too small to have a permanent team, you can outsource critical elements, such as customer service, so that consumers have confidence in your ability to deliver the goods. Working with a live answering service will ensure that calls are handled professionally and efficiently every time. It’s an affordable way to quickly ramp up staffing until you are profitable enough to add permanent employees to your payroll.
- Explore Social Media: Just having a social media presence is no longer sufficient for business success. You need to use social media to showcase your technical expertise and really engage with your current and prospective customer base. Learn how the various features of platforms such as Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter can be used to continuously communicate with your customers and encourage sales conversions. Social media marketing can help you take your game to the next level. Here is a list of social media solutions and how they’ll help you expand.
- Have High Quality Marketing Collateral: You don’t need to spend a fortune creating high quality marketing collateral. There are a ton of freelancers willing to create videos, brochures and podcasts at a fraction of the cost and with the same quality offered by high-priced marketing firms. That being said, you have to be involved in the process and be clear about your expectations. Be sure to provide material about your company and products so that your target audience is apparent to the freelancer. Here is a list of tips to help you.
- Be Reachable – But Not Directly: If you work from home, make sure that you have a dedicated line for your business as well as private office space. Customers don’t want to hear loud background noise while trying to negotiate a deal. You might also consider having a receptionist manage your calls. It creates a professional barrier between you and your callers, and can make your business appear larger than it is. This will help open doors with high quality clients who are willing to pay a premium for exceptional service.