Understand your strengths & weaknesses. Get to know your competitors' strengths & weaknesses too – ask the customers.
Plan for the long term as well as the short term. In order to know where you’re going and how you’re going to get there, prepare a business plan or the next 1, 3 or 5 years. Set clear, measurable objectives and review your growth strategies regularly.
Include your staff in decision making where possible. Especially when it comes to planning for business growth. No involvement, no committment.
If you want to move into a new market sector or develop new products, get as much information as possible before investing.
Try to measure return on investment in promotional tools. Direct contact with potential customers (such as phone calls, mailers, face to face selling) may be much more effective than indirect contact such as advertising.
Business to business and service organisations rely heavily on relationship building with customers. Make sure that this is a key goal of all your staff.
Set up regular communication with existing customers, not just new ones. Concentrate on retaining loyal customers – they are more profitable and are the foundation of the business. They can also be an excellent source of referrals. To consistently grow a business, you need to focus equally on existing and new customers.
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