Don’t Just Survive, Thrive

5 Practical Tips to Counteract the Downturn

Consumer confidence is at an all time low as our economy moves further south each day… There is a lot of uncertainty about which is causing many good business to struggle in the difficult economic environment. Even if your business is struggling, you can take steps now to turn it around and position your self for Growth when the upturn comes and it will come.

Here are 5 Practical Tips you can follow today:

Keep Selling: Many businesses have stopped selling or have drastically cut back their advertising and marketing budgets. This means there is less competition out there for your products and services which presents a golden opportunity for you to win new customers and increase your market share.

Get Innovative with your marketing: What worked in the past, may not work today. Put systems in place to measure the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns and test them. Be Innovative, try a different marketing technique, measure the result, if successful implement it in your business, if not then try another marketing technique. The key here is to quickly identify 4-5 proven techniques that will now work in your business, helping you to get more customers and increase sales.

Talk to your customers: In a downturn, your customer’s needs and priorities change. Don’t assume your customers are happy with the products/ services you sell. Ask them how you are doing? What they like about your products/ Services and what can be improved? What other products they would like to buy from you?

Talk to your employees: Ask your employees for comments and suggestions on how the business can be improved and made more efficient. In these uncertain times, employees are fearful for their jobs and will do everything they can to ensure the business continues to grow and their job is secure. Tell your employees you are looking for ways to cut costs and limit layoffs and ask them for their suggestions. If your solution includes pay cuts, 3 day weeks, or additional responsibilities, they will react more favorably if they know you’re doing everything you can to keep them on the job.

Limit Layoffs/ Redundancies: In many cases you may have no choice but to cut staff. Should this happen, great care needs to be taken as sweeping cuts may cause morale and productivity to fall among the remaining employees, prompting other employees to leave as well. Also, when customers hear that you have downsized they may lose confidence in your company’s ability to handle new orders.