5 Small Business Strategies You Can Implement

Running a small business is hard. You are often operating on a limited budget, with multiple tasks to handle. It can sometimes feel like there are not enough hours in the day to get everything done and achieve your goals. This article will look at five small business strategies you can implement to help your company grow effortlessly.

So whether you’re already running a small business or just starting a company, here are five small business strategies you can implement. These strategies will help you maximise your resources to boost productivity, save on additional costs, and effectively promote your products.

1. Work with a small efficient team

    Choosing the right people to support your business goals will play a key factor in your business’s success or failure. As a small business owner, you can’t afford to invest in the wrong person. You need to be working with people who work hard and can deliver on their promises.

    Finding that balance, when you often don’t have much money to spare, is a challenge.

    Depending on your business model, it could be a good idea to work with freelancers initially. You can find some great freelancers with expertise in their field of work. Moreover, freelancers offer you a certain amount of flexibility. For example, you only pay for their services when you have a need. The flip side is that a freelancer will cost more per hour than a full-time member of staff.

    You can use freelancers to expand your business strategically. For example, you could use freelance writers to create content for your blog or a freelance graphic designer to create marketing materials.

    As you identify an increased need for certain types of support, you can transition from working with a freelancer to working with part-time or full-time staff. You might even be able to convince the freelancer you’re working with to go full-time.

    Regardless of your approach, make sure you monitor team productivity. You can use team management platforms to assign tasks and a tool like Zoomshift to manage work schedules.

    2. Define your customer persona

      One of the first things you should do as a small business is defining your customer persona. Your customer persona is a representation of your ideal customer. The customer persona will include information about customer demographics, like age, income, sex, etc. You will also need to identify customer interests and pain points to ensure your company can address them appropriately.

      If you’re operating in a Business to Business (B2B) market, your customer persona will also include information about the types of companies you are targeting. These are also referred to as company personas. To create a detailed company persona, you will need to gather information about the niche these companies operate in, revenue, and the person who makes purchasing decisions.

      The image below is a nice representation of a customer persona for a B2B company.

      Source: Napoleon Cat

      The customer persona is something you should reference for all of your marketing efforts. You can use the information you gathered to ensure your advertising budget is spent appropriately, or the sales copy on your website addresses your customer pain points.

      If you haven’t created a customer persona, I suggest you do that immediately. David Campbell, Marketing Strategist at Right Inbox recommends using data sources like Google Analytics, interviews, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform, etc., to ensure that your persona reflects your ideal customer.

      3. Learn from your competition

        It would be great if you didn’t have to deal with any competition. Customer acquisition would certainly be a lot easier if the only option available to prospective customers was your company. Unfortunately, that’s not going to happen, and you’re always going to face the situation where you are fighting other companies for customers.

        On the bright side, your competitors can provide you with valuable insights.

        Competitor analysis can help you identify strategies that other companies are applying that you could adapt to your business. There are various approaches you can take for competitor analysis. For instance, you can use the competitive analysis framework like the one below.

        Source: Myk Pono

        Effective competitor analysis will help you identify what your competitors are doing right and where there are opportunities in the market. The insights that you gain can impact all aspects of your business. For example, you might discover that one of your competitors is particularly active with SMS marketing. That’s an insight that could be valuable for your marketing efforts if you want to get a leg up on a competitor.


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        4. Identify and scale your best marketing channels

          As a business owner, you face many choices about where to allocate your marketing budget. You can invest in social media marketing, content marketing, Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Pay Per Click (PPC), SMS marketing, etc. The list of available marketing channels is extensive.

          Unfortunately, your advertising budget and human resource considerations will constrain your ability to manage multiple marketing channels effectively. As a business, therefore, you need to choose your marketing channels wisely.

          It makes sense to start by utilising the marketing channels where you have expertise. For example, if you have experience with PPC advertising, start by scaling this marketing channel.

          As you invest money in a marketing channel, you’ll naturally start to see a diminishing Return on Investment (ROI) over time. Eventually, you reach a point of diminishing returns with every marketing channel.

          Source: The Peak Performance Centre

          When you notice a drop in your ROI, you need to consider investing money in alternative marketing channels. Competitive analysis will help you identify channels that your competitors find most useful. However, don’t be afraid to experiment and invest in emerging or under-utilised channels like SMS.

          As you experiment with a new channel, track your returns. You will find some channels that offer a positive ROI. When you have identified a new channel, invest and scale.

          5. Improve internal processes

            As you grow your small business, you’ll notice that most of your business operations are based on processes. You will have a process for running your marketing campaigns, advertising on social media, hiring new employees, dealing with customer service inquiries, and many others.

            One of the most crucial small business strategies you can implement is learning how to document these systems so that tasks can be outsourced to employees. The better you can document and then outsource these tasks, the faster your business will grow.

            There are many ways of tracking your business operations. At Zoomshift, we use team management platforms to centralise all of the key information about the business. There are Trello boards for all of the business operations, including content marketing.

            A centralised information system for your business will help every aspect of your operations. It will help you onboard staff faster and enable people to take on additional tasks with fewer problems. Systemising your operations is one of the most important small business strategies you can implement and should be a core part of your business development strategy.

            The bottom line

            Being a small business owner is hard. You start by doing almost everything on your own. You need to invest lots of time and effort to keep it running. Hard work alone, however, is not enough for your small business to succeed. You need to be strategic to reach your business goals. Without a plan, your small business won’t grow. Worse, it might even fail.

            In this article, I outlined five business strategies you can use. Work with a small team, define your customer persona, learn from your competitors, identify your best marketing channels, and systemise your business operations.

            Implement these strategies, and with patience and perseverance, you’ll be well on your way to success. In time, your small business won’t be so small anymore.

            This is a guest post written by Owen Jones.

            About the author:

            Owen Jones is the Senior Content Marketer at ZoomShift, an online schedule maker app. He is an experienced SaaS marketer, specializing in content marketing, CRO, and FB advertising. He likes to share his knowledge with others to help them increase results.