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The Ruby Group | Akron and Columbus, OH

Think you can’t compete with the “big guys?”

Wondering if you’ll ever push beyond the plateau of being a “small business?”

If you’re ready to take your company from where it is to where you want it to be, you have to behave differently. You have to be proactive to make it happen.

Here are seven common sense ideas to generate big growth for your small business.

1. Turn your customers into salespeople.
It’s a fact that 65 percent of new business comes from referrals. And referrals come from happy customers. Referral marketing is different than straight-up marketing. It involves a combination of building the initial relationship, serving the customer beyond expectation, and actually asking for the referral. A great resource is John Jantsch’s book, The Referral Engine. No matter what business you’re in, Jantsch shares ideas you can put into action right away.

2. Diversify.
Beyond just your direct products and services, what other opportunities exist for your business to generate income and/or exposure. Consider public speaking, online webinars, consulting, or other potential possibilities.

3. Put your people (and yourself) through sales training.
Without a system in place, your sales force is running blindly through a maze of roadblocks, sharp turns and dead ends. Sales training not only empowers your sales team with a selling system, but it also gets everyone on the same page. Do your salespeople follow a system, or is each one “winging it” each time they call on a prospect?

4. Use technology to automate.
From customer relations to marketing to billing, automation increases efficiency and can even directly build your business. At JoltCMS, much of what we do revolves around marketing automation, which involves a proven online methodology of attracting, converting, closing, and delighting your audience. But, marketing is only one area that can be automated. Check out this list of 13 Handy Business Automation Tools for Extremely Busy People.

5. Be slow to hire, fast to hire.
A long-standing mantra, the concept of hiring slow and firing fast is often easier said than done. But, it’s a crucial step in growing your business. Taking the time to find the right people is essential; and quickly removing those who are poor performers and/or morale suckers is just as important.

6. Open a new location.
While this is not a decision to be taken lightly, opening a new location can create a great opportunity for growth. Whether you own a retail business or a manufacturing company, expanding your footprint can have both an immediate and long-term positive effect on the business. Just be sure to invest the time necessary to ensure your making the best decision possible.

7. Expand your market.
Expanding your market doesn’t mean branching off into something outside of your current market and starting something totally new. Instead, look at your client base, and the look three degrees left or right to see where opportunities exist. Could you offer new services/products to existing customers or use what you have to enter a new market?

Some businesses are happy with the status quo, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But, if you’re driven to transform your small business into a thriving, growing organization for the long run, consider these seven valuable points.

And, if you have questions or you’re interested in learning more, don’t hesitate to reach out for support. Just call (330) 929-9449; we’d love to learn more about you and your business and see if there’s some way we can help.

Thank you to Matt White for sharing. Matt is the owner of JoltCMS where he helps businesses help their customers.

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