Five things that are holding your business back

Brian
April 16, 2009

If you're a small business, finding new customers can be a challenge, especially in the current economy. If you're struggling to find new clients, don't rush to blame the recession. You might be responsible. Here are five things that might be holding you back from success today: 1. You're not networking. Evaluate your networking prowess. Are you a member of the local Chamber of Commerce? How about a business networking group such as BNI? If not, sign up today. Talk to your customers and make sure that everyone who knows you also knows what you do (and that you do it well). This doesn't mean your next tennis match should be a dialogue in the finer nuances of business card design; only that it bodes well for you to make others aware of what you do. Be active in your community, join online forums, groups and virtual communities; and be cordial, helpful and insightful whenever possible. 2. You're not listening. What do your clients love about you? What would they change? What's missing in the marketplace that you can provide? If you don't know the answers to these questions, you're not listening to your customers. And if you're not listening, you're not asking. Ask your customers, and potential customers, what would make life easier for them to identify new niches and lucrative changes you can make. 3. You're not practicing what you preach. Few things are as obvious. Consider, for example, an SEO firm that espouses the virtues of fresh content, but hasn't updated its own site in weeks. You lose credibility, and potential customers aren't confident that you'll follow through on their projects, either. Before you can dictate another's “remodeling” strategies, you must make sure your own house is in order. 4. You're not spending. If you're not spending, you're not earning. Yes, it's true that it can be difficult for companies, especially small businesses, to spend money when it's tight. But time after time, the companies who persevere are those who vamp up their marketing efforts when the competition takes a sabbatical. Remember that marketing campaigns are about return on investment — for each dollar you spend on marketing, you should make money, not lose it. If you're able to develop a successful marketing campaign, why would you stop? 5. You're not delegating. How much time do you spend doing all the work? How much work do you delegate to others? Business owners, marketers, designers, writers and more have to be free to build relationships with customers, brainstorm creative strategies and manage a team of employees. If you try to do it all, you spread yourself too thin and your product suffers. Delegate tasks to those you trust to do the job right, breathe a sigh of relief and move on to bigger things. Remember, you can always have the final approval before the client sees your firm's work. Now, where do you stand? Are you holding yourself back? How so — and how are you going to change it? Can you add to this list?

Brian's picture

About Brian Morris

Brian Morris serves in various capacities as a freelance writer, content developer and public relations specialist for growing small businesses. When he’s not writing, he can be found on the racquetball court - usually getting his tail kicked by guys 20 years older.

Anonymous's picture
January 07, 2016 03:21 am #

Great post...I have definitely fell victim to a few of things and like most people need to improve in certain areas of running my business. Thanks for the tips and making sure I stay on top my game. Nice post.

Brian's picture
Brian January 07, 2016 03:21 am #

Thanks for reading wms affiliate!

Anonymous's picture
January 07, 2016 03:21 am #

This article is still very relavent. I think my biggest issue is delegation.

Brian's picture
Brian January 07, 2016 03:21 am #

Thanks for your post Benjamin! Delegation is difficult, especially for sole proprietors and entrepreneurs. But it's the only way your business will truly grow - good luck! Nice product, by the way.

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