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Business Downturns: It’s Not Just the Economy
So it’s been a while since you’ve seen loyal customers, orders have dropped, and you’ve laid some people off due to lack of revenues. If you’re placing the blame on a down economy only, you need to dig a little deeper and come up with some new and innovative ideas.
Sure you can blame the economy for some of the drop in sales revenues, but when was the last time you really took the time to analyze, evaluate or tried something new at your business? Consumers constantly seek out something unique and if your business isn’t, you can’t just blame the economy and slump back in your chair.
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Top Business Turn-Around Ideas
Before you throw in the towel, re-charge your business with some of these tips:
- Social Networking – If you don’t Tweet, aren’t LinkedIn or don’t have a business blog or website, you need to start utilizing these social networking tools. To some, social networking is looked at as a fad that will soon lose its pace. Don’t be fooled here, social networking is on the rise and here to stay. If you can’t afford to hire someone dedicated to helping you create a blog or website along with other social network duties, divvy up the jobs to selected employees. Give them bonuses or incentives if sales are gained through their efforts.
- Review What You Have – You already have a lot of customer information from prior transactions so start by a thorough review. Look for buying trends and who bought what and why. Use your lost sales data to figure out why you couldn’t close the deal and improve on your sales pitch. Distribute data tidbits to your managers and seek their input on how to generate sales. Even though we are supposed to live in a paperless world, chance are you’ve got lots of helpful information right at your fingertips so use it before you shred it.
- Demand More From Employees – Good jobs are hard to find and your employees know it. Use that knowledge to your advantage and clean house if you have to. If you’ve got a bad employee that is lowering morale, remove the source and replace it with an employee who is motivated. Often, a failing business is due to poor customer service and uninterested employees who just wait for that weekly paycheck. Don’t forget to hand out incentives for jobs well done.
- Revisit Your Advertising Campaign – Have you run the same old ads over and over again to no avail? What’s the point if those ads aren’t gaining customers? You’re really just wasting your money. Speak to your print, television and radio ad reps and make them do their job. Ask them to come up with something unique and help them by offering sales ideas you have. If you want to let your customers know they can make payments, obtain credit, or you’re having a one-day and only one-day sale, make sure those messages come across uniquely in your advertising campaign.
- Change Your Inventory – There are two ways to tackle this. You can take your existing inventory and change displays and locations to make it look like new inventory or seek the advice of your vendors. Ask them what is selling at your competitors. You have vendor relationships so use them to your advantage.
- Do You Really Know How to Sell? – If you’re sales and marketing pitches aren’t working, when was the last time you spent time on your own selling skills? With the Internet at your fingertips you can enroll in online sales classes and even find group discounts so you and all your managers can attend without leaving the office.
- Get Out In the Community – Sure you’ve joined the Chamber of Commerce but do you go to community meetings or local sporting events and introduce yourself? Community business owners can attract a lot of attention if they sell their own personality and make donations, even if they are small donations, within their own cities and towns.
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Start Today, Don’t Wait for Tomorrow
The hardest part of utilizing business turn-around ideas is actually implementing them. No one likes change or even wants to explore change but you must if you’re in a business slump. If you’ve read this entire article, don’t just think about being more innovative, do something today. Taking the smallest step will lead to larger steps that will turn-around your business and increase the sales revenues you need.