7 INSANELY GREAT STRATEGIES TO GROW AND EXPAND YOUR BUSINESS
Businesses exist to add value to people, meeting demand and improving the economy. But for many businesses, existing isn’t enough, they need to grow, to expand, to reach more people with either their products or services.
But growth can be tough.
The damning stat that shows that 82% of businesses in the United States fail in the first year because of cash flow issues shouldn’t be your business. While you may not be in the United States, the odds that the economic situation isn’t as encouraging. So, more than just staying afloat, stuck in a position, you need to grow. Growth and expansion are a natural human longing, so don’t feel you’re overreaching when you seek growth.
However, I need to warn you not to put too much pressure on your business to grow if you are new. In the first few months of your business, it is possible that you’ll be doing just about enough to keep the lights on, most times wearing multiple hats. But don’t be dismayed, growth and expansion are possible.
There are several reasons why business owners want to grow and expand their business. Ranging from reaching more people to increasing profit, these reasons, whichever they are, are noble. But to achieve these growth dreams, you need to have a strategy in place. Yes, you can just grow, but if you aren’t prepared for the growth, you might grow and grow out of business.
Therefore, I will be sharing with you 7 insanely great strategies you can use to grow and expand your business, helping you reach more people, make more profit and become a global brand (if that’s what you want).
First, let’s talk about why you want to grow your business.
WHY DO YOU NEED TO GROW AND EXPAND YOUR BUSINESS?
I once read a tweet from a business mentor that if you have a great product or service, you are doing a disservice to humanity if you don’t talk about it. In the same vein, if you have an astonishingly awesome product, you are doing humanity a disservice if you stay in that safe corner of your house, or in the same place you’ve been for years serving those same customers. You might not have plans to be as big as Phil Knight and Nike (I just completed the book, and it is an awesome read.), but you can — and should — expand so you can give more people that great service or product of yours.
However, you are probably the type that doesn’t care for those moralistic, saving-the-world ideas; you just want to make money, make enough profit and never get to work again.
That’s perfectly fine. On whichever of the divides you belong, growth and expansion is necessary to achieve your goal.
So, let us look at the 7 amazing growth and expansion strategies for your fledgling business.
- HAVE A DEFINITE GOAL: Yes, you read that right: define what growth is and means to you. This might not look like a strategy, but you will most likely stumble on the way if you’re unsure of where you want to go and how you want to get there.
A definite goal for your business’s growth will help you know what success looks like. This way, your mind and team know what success looks like. The simple goal setting strategy comes to play here: SMART GOALS. Your goals should be specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Realistic and Time-bound. With a smart goal, you will be working with specificity. Even though you don’t hit all the set goals, you know you’re making efforts towards getting there.
Also, setting SMART goals ensures other things don’t distract you. As a business owner, you are not going to get sucked into the trends and what your competitors are doing. But with a goal, you stay focused and do what needs to be done, and not what feels right.
In the LEAN STARTUP strategy for product development, you can create small, measurable success points, and reach them.
So, you can say, I want to dominate this particular industry niche, so I need to have a product or service that addresses an issue that customers in this niche deal with. Instead of getting distracted by competitors, the defined goal keeps you on your toes, and your eyes firmly fixed on the price ahead.
In addition, setting a goal helps you stay focused on your business’s growth, setting a growth and expansion goal allows you to measure when you’re doing the right things or not. Growth strategies are not cast in stone, they change. Sometimes the market sentiments might not be as your market research had predicted, so there’ll be a need for a change. With a defined goal, your necessitated changes will not take your growth out of the window, instead, the changes will drive the growth further.
2. DEFINE THE MARKET NICHE YOU WANT TO PENETRATE: When Nike started, their biggest competition was Adidas. At the time, Adidas were making more than just sports shoes, they were also into sports apparels. Nike knew that getting into the apparel business would be tough, given their limited resources and brand power, so they stuck with running shoes. The innovative ideas that other members of the team brought were specifically on running shoes. Was the apparel market lucrative then? Yes. It was in its nascent stage. Nike could have delved right into it, but they decided not to.
Growing and expanding your business is a strategic process, one that requires you to be firmly established as an industry leader in one sector.
Another example of a company that understood their market niche and stuck with it is Starbucks. The guys at Starbucks knew that coffee was their specialty, so they stuck with it. Yes, when the Starbucks franchise went to other countries, they added some local recipes, but the core of every Starbucks shop worldwide is coffee.
If you want to break into new markets, be sure you are confident that you will be a market leader in that niche. Being niche-specific doesn’t mean you won’t be able to try other products or add new offers, but it will be foolish of you to do that on your first try with growth. In growth, you want to reach more people in other places, right? So, staying true to a niche allows you to establish yourself first as a leader, thereby allowing your new customers to trust you when you give them something different.
3. CARRY OUT INTENSE MARKET RESEARCH: So, you know what market you want to get into, but what do they want? How do they like what you want offered to them? What will it cost you to expand to this new market? If you render a product, do you have the raw materials needed to produce the final products close to this new market? Are you sure what doing business is like in this new market?
These are some vital questions — and more — that a thorough market research helps you answer. You are well-prepared to take on this new market when you carry out honest, niche-focused market research.
So, you want to scale your jewelry business. You want to enter two new markets, in different locations. Your market research will tell you what demographic of customers are most likely to buy your jewelry, the buying powers of this demographic, what pain points they have, etc.
Market research and analysis helps you dial down on what problems your product or service solve and how to market these solutions.
4. CREATE A SALES FUNNEL: A sales funnel is a marketing strategy that helps you turn cold prospects to long-term customers. After you’ve identified what the new market wants, you create a sales funnel that converts them from people who don’t know about your business to those who do and are interested in the product or service that you offer. A sales funnel, well-defined, helps you take full advantage of the new market you’re growing and expanding to.
The goal of a sales funnel is to have customers with high Lifetime Value, returning customers who become your brand evangelists.
In creating your sales funnel, having an email list will help you stay connected with your customers, letting them in on new products and services.
DIVERSIFY YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE OFFERING: In the book $100M Offer by Alex Hermozi, Alex talked about offering your customers so many beneficial options in your product or service offerings that they can’t say no. Your job as a business that wants to grow and expand is to ensure your product or service covers all the possible loopholes, in this case, pain points or hurdles, that your customers might present.
For example, you sell luxury jewelries, and you want to diversify your product offerings. The possible objections that your potential customers will have could be:
- Don’t know how to test if the jewelries are original
- Don’t know the right combination of clothes that go well with those jewelries.
- Don’t like heavy jewelries
- Don’t know the events to wear these jewelries to
In a situation like this, you can offer your clients, in addition to your jewelries, a personal styling plan, a bespoke event calendar, and an original testing tool that affirms the authenticity of the jewelries. These new offers, diversified from the original plan, allows you to reach more people who’d before now not be interested in buying your jewelries.
6. HAVE LOYALTY PROGRAMS: Loyalty programs are a way to hook your new customers, and the old ones, with extra offers. Loyalty programs give your new customers a sense of belonging with your product or service and endears them to you.
You might be wondering how effective customer loyalty programs are. A statistic from Harvard Business Review shows that brands that engage in customer loyalty programs grow 2.5 times faster than those without loyalty programs.
To grow your business, you need customers who’re loyal to your brand, and with loyalty programs, you have those types of customers. 75% of customers say that they are more likely to buy from a brand that gives them incentives.
So, to expand that amazing business of yours, give your customers customer loyalty programs, and one that is personalized to meet their specific needs.
7. CREATE A FRANCHISE AND DIGITAL PRODUCTS: We live in an age where competition is rife. Creating a franchise for your business gives you and other interested entrepreneurs a chance to make money while making them money as well. With a franchise, you get a chance to enter new markets, and increase your brand’s awareness. A franchise also helps you stay relevant in your business’ industry niche and keeps your business relevant.
Creating digital products, on the other hand, helps you consistently break into new markets, and also keeps you in the face of old, new and potential customers.
Also, you can partner with other brands that offer complementary products and services. With a well-placed strategy, you reach more new customers and offer your old customers better services and products.