Owning your own business is awesome when it works, but it can also be frustrating when you don’t get the results you want. I’ve helped over 10,000 people to grow businesses. Often with no budget or time, often quadrupling profits in a short amount of time, so let’s look at 7 reasons why your business is failing and how to fix it
1. Relying on social.
Social media should be part of your marketing strategy, not it’s entirety. Imagine Facebook disappeared tomorrow, what would you do? I often find business owners pouring tons of time (and money) into social media but without altering the next 6 fails they will fail to make it work. Social media is reliant on you doing something — either physically adding content and/or spending money. Consider blogging works 24/7 and is evergreen marketing — i.e., it works when you aren’t.
This graphic is not the prettiest, but it sums up how you need to think about marketing — what 8 to 10 tools will you use?
2. Not really knowing your audience and why they buy from you
When you start a business it’s great when people are buying, but if you don’t know the science behind why people buy you are missing out on the opportunity to get people buying often with little input from you. All of my clients can tell you where they met their clients, what issues their clients have, where they like to shop, even what TV shows they like and what car they are likely to drive. Knowing this information is essential. When I teach people how to blog or communicate to sell, I teach them how to find the power words and the power sentences. These are the powerful hooks that make people want to learn more.
3. Not keeping an eye on the competition, trends, consumers.
If you can’t tell me what your competition are charging, what they are selling and how they are getting to their customers, you are missing a trick. If you can’t tell me whether your customers are using Tik Tok or Facebook, real books or electronic, you are missing a trick. Trends change. In marketing the humble leaflet went through years of neglect. Now it’s back with a vengeance as we tire of looking at screens and want something tangible. Our needs change all the time. You don’t need to obsess about the competition, but you do need to know what they are doing and how it could impact on you and your customers. Remember competition is also an opportunity for collaboration.
4. Not knowing your numbers.
If you want to grow, you first need to know where you are. How many followers on social media? How much interaction? How many visits to your website? How many sales? What were they buying? I can help a company increase profit just by looking at the numbers and working out what to sell, what to promote and what to increase in price. It’s scary increasing prices, so the next fail is essential to learn from.
5. Not asking for help.
When I set up my own business in the 2008 recession, I made the mistake of trusting everyone I met. That was ridiculous, it led me to spending money on things I couldn’t afford and weren’t essential to getting a business off the ground. I learnt the hard way, so you don’t have to. Don’t assume that someone on social media with an ability to use Canva to make pretty posts is going to be good for business. Last year I saw new clients who had gone elsewhere before working with me who had collectively wasted over £150,000!
Ask for proof that person / business can help so you don’t go it alone. It will be so much harder I promise you. I’ve a mastermind group you can join for £10. Why is it so cheap? Because I live by my tagline “As passionate about your success as you are”. Look for people like me and ask for proof. You want to actually speak to happy customers, so you know your profits are being invested in the right places. It will be essential to have the right help to ensure you don’t fall for the next fail.
6. Not being consistent.
In business I tell clients that if they want to grow their business, they need to find 25% of their time to do it in. You have to be consistent in anything you want to get results in. But don’t fight who you are. If you don’t like structured goals, then keep it fluid with a basic structure that is allowed to be deviated from.
If you need structure, then check your diary and schedule time to get it done. Do you need a whole day a week? A half day? Or will you get bored? In which case make it 30-minute chunks. Be consistent in your marketing, your customer care, your networking, your growth and your attention to your health too. This is another reason why working with a coach is so powerful because we not only help you write the plan and its actions, but we also make sure you take action and get the results you said you would!
7. Not following up
And lastly of all the fails in business, not following upis a crime against your success. Many of my business owner clients make more money just from following up. Before you go looking for new business, you will be amazed how much you can do with your existing client base. Get in touch with past customers, ask them to recommend you and/or leave a review. Google My business is a neglected tool to business growth — you don’t need a million reviews to benefit from local targeted traffic.
It does involve confidence to do effective follow up but then a successful business will always need confidence, so always make sure that’s on your side.
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