As a new business owner, you have to deal with the many varying pieces in your business puzzle. Sometimes you want to gain more clients or want to share your newest products, and you can jump in too quickly. You have good intentions; however, it may not turn out the way you expect.
1. Doing too much. As an entrepreneur or micro-business owner, when you think about your promotional efforts do you think, “I am going to promote to everyone, all the time?” Even though, it may initially sounds like a great plan because the premise of the mindset is the more you promote to, the more responses you will get back. However, what happens more often is that you take all the time (and money) to promote to as many people as you can but you don’t stop and think about who is receiving your promotional materials.
Teresa Morrow’s questions to ponder:
- How much of the time is being wasted going after those who aren’t ready for your services?
- How many of these people aren’t going to be good clients for your business, thus wasting more of your time in the process?
2. Not knowing your customers. Sometimes you need to take a step back and review your target market. Perhaps what you are offering is more of what you think your customers are looking for but what your clients really want is different. It is best not to assume you know your customers’ wants and needs.
Here come more questions, however, answering these may be your ticket to new clients:
- Where they are—demographically
- Where they are—socially
- What they do
- Where do they go to find information
The solution to answering these questions about what your clients are looking for—seek those you wish to be your customers and ask additionally; what they like, where they buy, why the buy, what they are looking for, what are their price points, are they the final decision maker, etc. Most people will be willing to give you answers to your questions because people want to find those who will help them solve their problems.
I know this process may sound tedious and perhaps unnecessary but the more you know about your customer, they more you will know how to be of service to them thus gaining their trust and their business.
3. Not Embracing Competition. Don’t be afraid of those who are in your industry. You could possible learn a lot from others who have been in your industry longer than you or specialize in a different aspect of your industry.
As business owners you have good intentions to offer your services and products to the world, however, you really can’t take care of the world’s orders. Be sure to take the time to reflect on what your customer is all about in the most possible ways to ensure you are the resource your customer relies on over and over again. Remember, a successful business is about making those solid connections including those in your industry (great way to create joint ventures or partnerships, a win win for all parties involved!)
By Teresa Morrow, who is on Board of Advisors with The WECAI Netowkr and Editor at Large at We Magazine for Women