5 Tips To Grow Your Local Or Small Business
Local and small business growth is vital as all businesses need to attract new customers to keep the doors open and the lights on. Irish entrepreneurs have multiple objectives when starting a new business, but overnight success is a very rare occurrence. There is no magical secret formula for you to deploy in order to achieve instant results, and you can take it from someone that has stumbled before – there is no guarantee of success.
However, there are steps you can take to help you maximise your chances of success. So how do you achieve the growth that will turn your small business into a big one? Here are some small business growth tips to help you expand beyond your current size.
Focus on Creating Happy Customers
It may seem like a completely redundant point to you, but you would be amazed at the amount of small and local businesses in Ireland that don’t pay attention to their customer’s frustrations. If you deliver a positive experience and exceed their expectations, then your customers will not be shy in singing your praises on social media, review sites or just to their friends and family. This is a valuable tool in achieving organic growth for your small business. Mess it up though, and they will go even quicker in the opposite direction, leaving negative reviews and making it much more difficult for you to grow and gain new customers. I wrote previously about the importance of online reviews and why they are such a vital tool to local and small businesses in Ireland.
Research and Segment your Market
Most large businesses have carved out their own segment in their market that they focus on. Just because you are a small Irish business does not mean that you should not do the same. Identify a viable segment in your market that you can target. Conduct research on the internet, your community, your competitors, the segments they are targeting, their products and work out what segments might be underserved. Your local chamber of commerce may also be a helpful resource in this research. Just because your locality has a Starbucks, a Costa Coffee and an Insomnia, does not mean that there isn’t an opportunity for a more traditional style tea room.
Get your Business Online
Remember that fewer and fewer people are now picking up the phone book when looking for a local business. Instead they are picking up their phone and searching Google, yes even in Ireland. If your business is not featuring in those results, then you’re going to have a very hard time staying ahead of your competitors that are. You don’t have to invest thousands of euro in a website in order to get a meaningful online presence. Featuring numerous times on the first page of Google’s search results, even if you don’t have a website, is achievable without breaking the bank. In fact, there are a number of free ways to get your business online, again a subject I have written on before.
Engage with your Customers on Social Media
Does your business have a social media presence? It should! Social media’s penetration into Irish society is huge, even with older generations as they try to keep in touch with children and grandchildren. Almost everyone now has an account on one platform or another making it very easy to engage with new potential customers. For many small Irish businesses, social media provides an invaluable tool for engaging with their consumers, gaining additional insights into their market segment and also help with building brand recognition. Posting photographs and videos of your work, and if possible tagging your customers, can deliver very good exposure for a rock bottom investment. Company events, new products or services, promotions and special offers can also be cheaply and effectively promoted. On that note…..
Give Something Away
People love a freebie and if it is feasible for you to give away a product, service or even a free trial, then it can be a great way to garner some additional exposure. Not only that, but studies have shown that freebies can instil a sense of obligation in consumers, encouraging them to spend more. Utilising social media in a give away can again increase its effectiveness (don’t forget to like, share and tag a friend folks).
Have our small business growth tips inspired you?
While it is important to attract new customers and grow your business, it doesn’t have to be overly difficult. Hopefully these small business growth tips have given you some food for thought on generating more interest in your business.