Tuesday, April 14, 2009

So, you have weathered the storm

Congratulations, you have survived the first three months of the year. This is often the toughest period financially for many small business owners. This means if you are still in business you have survived, but did you thrive and do you have a plan for how you will continue to succeed in the remainder of the year.

There are three things you should think about as you look forward to financially better times. First, how are you doing financially? Did you hit your first quarter sales goals? If not, why not? If so, how can you translate that success to your future marketing efforts? Consider what adjustments you will need to make in the coming months to address your financial needs.

A good management plan allows for you to be more fluid in your business and redirect your business decisions as circumstances may dictate. It allows you to capitalize on successes and avoid repeating mistakes. The plan allows you to chart your business and set goals for its future. If you do not have a management plan in place it is still not too late to put one together.

Next, have you established a strong marketing plan? Are you ready to promote your products and services? To do so you should have targeted the demographic of your potential client. Then determine the best way to deliver your message to them in a way they will respond. Next, create your marketing collateral to build awareness for your offer. Be prepared to follow-up on leads and referrals and don’t be afraid to ask existing clients for these referrals. The point is, the chance an existing client will know someone who would also be interested in your service is pretty good. But you must ask them for these referrals.

And finally, your future, what are you doing today which will make the first quarter of next year more successful. It is not too early to be considering your marketing and financial goals for the coming year. There are indications the economy is getting better and people’s perception of the economy is improving. This bodes well for small business and you need to be prepared to take full advantage of the improving economy.

Your foresight and attitude will go a long way in improving the success of your business. Those of you who have maintained a strong business over the past eighteen months are keenly aware of how important having a good plan in place has been to your past success. Presumably you were successful because you invested the time in your business to make the necessary decisions to keep it moving forward.

Better days are ahead. Be prepared to take full advantage. Plan to succeed and work your plan. As always we are here to assist you if you need it.

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