Mar 29, 2010

Five Business Growth Strategies By Steve Strauss

Q: Steve – You must hear from a lot of small business owners. Do you know of any strategies that seem to be working especially well in this economy? Thanks


A: Indeed I do hear from lots of small business owners and they do seem to have a few things in common. For one, they are definitely trying and experimenting with new, affordable business strategies right now; there seems to be a lot of trial and error going on out there. Secondly, and paradoxically, they are not forgoing the tried-and-true as they ride out the recession (the worst of which seems over.)

Here are a few of the new ideas that I have heard about that seem to be working well these days:

1. Make some new online friends: Social media is busting out right now for a reason – it’s working. If you still think Twitter is hogwash and that it is nothing more than a tool for Ashton Kutcher to build buzz, you are wrong. Twitter has become a valuable business tool that is allowing small business owners to connect with people in ways they otherwise could not.

Think of Twitter as a conversation. You can either choose to engage in it and be part of the discussion or you can watch from the sidelines as the people who are participating make new friends and business associates. Who do you think will get more business?

And of course Twitter is not the only game in town. LinkedIn is a fabulous business tool, as is Facebook and others. The important thing is that you engage in this new online world. It will make a difference.

2. Lower your prices: First let me say that lowering your prices is a strategy that needs to be done thoughtfully as there are dangers involved:

* You don’t want to devalue what you already offer
* You don’t want to get customers used to the lower prices
* You don’t want to damage your brand if yours is a more high-end business
* You will cut into your margins

That said, strategically lowering prices is an idea that can have a lot of merit because it is what customers are, by and large, looking for these more

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