Over the last few years I have worked with over forty businesses. Ranging from start-ups I am mentoring through to those doing several million pounds of turnover.
Many of them suffer with a number of critical errors, which on the face of it are small. But, they have a big impact on the bottom line. So excuse me as I flit back and forth across a range of topics, I make no apolgies for this – as they are all equally important for your future.
These individual items are pointed at you, if you are running a local business or a regional one. A one man band through to a larger business of upto ten staff – the kind of business where the owner still works in the business every day.
- Make sure you get your website designed as a lead generation tool and not an online business card. Your website should work for you and pay it’s own way. If it’s not you are missing a trick.
- Blog/Video and share your business content, stories, events and the stuff you do. Be creative and stand out. Tell the world.
- Make sure your sales processes are automed, using card payments and direct debits – far better for you to owe your clients money than the other way around.
- Create a budget payment scheme, where customers can pay monthly for higher priced purchases some of these I’ve set up recently include a builder (stage payments) local furniture retailer (spread the cost – interest free). Plumber charging up fron for annual Gas Inspections.
- Check out the charges on your pension by borrowing my brain, the interest rate on your mortgage and deal with any debt you may have. These are a cash soak.
- Work out who your customers really are and then work out where to find more of them.
- Automate your communication, look you can’t pay a gas bill without an email address now. Don’t tell me your customers don’t use email! Send more emails than you ever have.
- Come up with a charity to support, make a plan for an event and then publicise the hell out of out if (could be a simple as Red Nose Day or McMillan Coffee Morning)
That’s it for the time being but please do something, you’re a long time dead, and your business will thank you for it.