Clients and customers are the lifeblood to our businesses, and this year has been exceptionally challenging for small business owners, whether you’re a brick and mortar, online business, or both.
Back in 2008, I was living in San Francisco and flying high in my second year as a small business owner when the economy sunk. I remember having one of the WTF moments, just like we all did when the pandemania started. Tell me it’s not so!
I want to share some of the strategies I used to grow my business (AND make a net profit) during the last economic downturn that can still be applied today as you adapt, shift, and pivot during this season.
The best part–they won’t cost you a penny. I’m even giving you access to my free bonus guide: How To Diversify Your Offering and Maximize Profits below!
Time to put on your small business CEO hat, and let’s dive right in because if you’re anything like me you can see the opportunity for growth behind the current challenges.
Here are 3 simple steps I took to grow my small business during the economic downturn.
Take what applies to YOUR business and give it your sparkle.
1. Engage With Your Clients
Engaging with your clients sounds like a no brainer, right? You wouldn’t believe how many business owners don’t engage with their clients, customers, and subscribers regularly.
Communication is everything, and list building (aka email marketing) is essential now more than ever.
You own your list. You don’t own Instagram or Facebook 😉 And with the continually changing algorithms, it’s highly probable that your posts don’t reach your entire audience or, in fact, the target audience you want to engage with the most.
Keep your emails on brand and positive while sharing a story, product, or service that benefits your clients, customers, or subscribers. They need to know you are still around and more so how you can meet their new needs.
If you have a small list, no sweat—you still need to stay in touch.
Send them an email or pick up the phone and say hello! If they love you, they will love to hear from you!
In 2008 I was using a good old Gmail business account (back before I discovered email marketing platforms like MailChimp), but I still made an effort to engage with my audience by phone and email whether they were using my services or not!
Which brings me to number 2…
2. Find New Ways to Add Value by Monetizing On Your Existing Services and Adding New Services or Products
If you listen, your clients will always tell you what they need.
Pull up the hood, identify what’s been working, what hasn’t been working, what services and products your clients and customers buy the most, what they love about you, and scrap all the other crap (for now).
Don’t know what questions to ask? No worries, I got your back!
You can download my guide on How To Diversify Your Offering and Maximize Profits right here.
You have value to add, don’t you forget that! Take some time and brainstorm all the value that you add and build upon that!
Which brings me to number 3…
3. Provide Complete Solutions
You and your business can become the go-to source for your customers and clients by offering complete solutions instead of partial solutions to meet their needs, even if you may not have all the services and products yourself…
The key is finding a partner(s) who are not direct competitors to offer your customers and clients a unique set of solutions to meet their needs.
Here are some examples:
Let’s say you are an infertility therapist and coach and part of your coaching involves nutrition. You can partner with a nutritionist to offer your clients additional value.
Or you could be a personal trainer and partner with a nutritionist to help your clients start better eating habits.
Or maybe you are a copywriter and you can partner with a sales conversion copywriter or blog writer.
Or maybe you are a graphic designer and you can partner with a web developer.
Or maybe you’re a colon hydrotherapist and you can partner with a wellness coach or juice service to meet your clients’ unique needs.
Maybe you have a gift store and you can partner with an event planner to be the go-to choice for party favors.
The list goes on. BRAINSTORM. There are plenty of people out there who you can develop strategic partnerships with.
If you genuinely know your clients and customers and what they need, you will be able to develop a full-service set of solutions to meet their needs.
I know this works because I developed partnerships with over 300 vendors in San Francisco, and my business was my client’s go-to source to get all the things done!
Make your clients fall in love with your business, and continue to add value so they can’t live without you!