How to improve growth on your business? Growth is essential. How do you get more of it?
You can’t afford to sit still or tread water forever, even if you wanted to. Today, if you are not growing, you are shrinking and dying a slow death.
There are many benefits of growth, from being able to employ more people, having a grander impact, the ability to bring in more investors, attracting better talent, customer retention, and of course the financial benefits that come with that.
There are a variety of ways to measure growth. You may be measuring by headcount, revenue per employee, sales volume in units, top-line revenue, or profits. It’s up to you.
Here is a whole buffet of ways you can spur more growth. Find a few that work for you and try them out.
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Set Bigger Goals
More growth starts with bigger goals. Tangible goals. Make sure you have conducted some fresh market research to analyze the current and future landscape.
What does the competition look like now? What competition and gaps is there likely to be in the next few years? What is closing or opening up?
What market share is available? How much is possible? What new ways could you expand this market size? How much is this market likely to grow ahead? Where is the fastest growth emerging?
Set new goals and share them with your teams based on this data.
Increase Your Marketing Budget
If you want to make more sales and grow revenues, then the most obvious move is to do more marketing and advertising. That’s the most effective strategy for how to improve growth on your business.
Most businesses are not allocating nearly enough to their marketing budget. It is an area where they try to be super frugal, and end up just capping their own growth and velocity.
As sales and revenues are made, your marketing budget should be constantly increasing. Look at big companies you want to be like.
They don’t stop or reduce marketing, they are constantly increasing their marketing budgets. If you want to be bigger like them, you should be aspiring to be able to spend more on marketing and advertising.
According to Digiday, Proctor & Gamble spent almost $20B on advertising and marketing spend in 2019. In just one quarter in 2020, they increased their budget by $100M.
Amazon also increased its marketing budget by double digits in 2020, after spending almost $7B in 2019. Nestle, Coca-Cola, and Expedia also spend billions of dollars each year in this category. Along with many other brands, you wouldn’t even think would need to spend a dime on marketing anymore.
So, if you want to improve growth in your business, improve how much you are spending on marketing.
If you’re looking for more in-depth information on how to get traction for your business, check out this video I have put together. It will help you get started in the right direction.
Publish More Content
Publishing more content can be an easy and relatively fast way to generate more growth on many fronts. It can immediately help you pull in more customer traffic, gain the attention of investors, and build your visibility and credibility at scale, very cost-effectively. It is far more powerful than you might think.
This can include blogs, articles, press releases, social, and more. Done right, this content can keep on helping to snowball your growth over time. Recognize its potential when figuring out how to improve growth on your business.
Optimizing Your Sales & Marketing Processes
If you want to increase growth, but may not have a lot of other resources to push that growth, focus on getting more out from what you are putting in. Optimize and streamline everything you can.
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This will help you gain more free time for you and your team so that you can spend more time pushing growth. As well as freeing up a lot more dollars to use on better-performing items.
In turn, this means your teams can handle more high-performing sales leads and orders, compounding the benefits.
There are many ways to optimize. Automation is a big one. Automate everything you can.
You’ll save a ton of money on labor that can be poured into your advertising budget and fill the top of your funnel. You’ll also be able to serve customers better and process them and new sales faster, increasing your capacity for growth, without any major capital investments.
If you don’t have one, start using a CRM. If you have one that isn’t being used well, switch to a better brand and make sure everyone is using it.
This will ensure you are organized, don’t waste leads, and maximizing conversions and future growth opportunities.
Make Over Your Website
Unless you are Warren Buffett or Craigslist, then website design trends change every couple of years. Consumer expectations change fast with time. It could be time for an upgrade or makeover.
It doesn’t have to be a massive investment, but make sure this pillar of your business isn’t capping your growth and sabotaging all of your other efforts.
A great tell is how high your bounce rates are, and how few conversions and leads you are getting in comparison to clicks you are paying for and generating. Never overlook the importance of your virtual storefront when working out how to improve growth on your business.
Bring In A Marketing Strategy Expert To Create A New Plan
Even the most intelligent and experienced startup founders and business owners suffer from being too close to their business and on the inside. In fact, often the longer you are in business and the more experience you have the harder it is to be objective.
Bring in a marketing strategy pro to evaluate your business and the market, and design a new growth-oriented plan to achieve your goals.
At worse, they will confirm you are on the right track and are doing all of the right things. It is far more likely that they will provide new insights and ideas, and that at least some of them will help you spur new growth in ways you haven’t thought about or didn’t know how to do yet.
Add To Your Product Line
Adding new products can help both gain new customers and increase revenues from current and past customers. You may be able to expand into whole new segments by diversifying your product line, extend your reach by adding features or new pricing options, or get existing customers to come back and buy again.
There are two common models for this you are already familiar with. There is Tesla, which has continually brought out new models that are very different and can appeal to a much wider part of the marketplace.
Then there is Apple, which since the loss of Steve Jobs, has just seemed to have done its customers wrong every year, with new versions of the same product, and often very few real upgrades.
They just keep milking the same cow and robbing the same piggy banks. Then there are other companies like banks or Netflix and mobile phone carriers which are notorious for trying to grow their revenues by just charging more for the same service, or worse, charging more and giving less service. Decide which of these brands you want to be like.
What can you add to your product line to create upsells? Again, think about adding more value, not taking the earphones and charger out of the package, and forcing your customers to pay extra for what they thought they should be getting, and need for your base product to function.
Bundle Products & Services
Can you bundle your products and services together to generate more revenue at each sale?
If you don’t have more products of your own, you can include other people’s products, and either resell them based on wholesale pricing to you or get a commission.
The latter may make this far more efficient and scalable, without increasing your own workload, and while getting them to help promote you. And, it’s one of the most effective methods of how to improve growth on your business.
Increase The Percentage Of Recurring Income
You will always need to be adding new customers. Though repeat customers and automated sales are typically far more profitable and efficient to make.
Recurring income is a great base that adds a lot of stability and consistency to your business. Which also helps future planning and expansion.
Try rolling over more of your current and new customers to recurring, subscription-type plans.
Pour In More Capital
If you’ve optimized and your marketing and sales machine is working smoothly and your unit economics are great, then growth is often just about pouring in more capital to supersize what you are doing fast.
Once you are at this point, you should also be able to much more easily attract investment from great investors. You’ll have significant negotiating power too.
With their capital helping you to scale and grow fast, that will, in turn, make your company even more attractive to more investors for future fundraising rounds too.
Keep in mind that in fundraising storytelling is everything. In this regard for a winning pitch deck to help you here, take a look at the template created by Silicon Valley legend, Peter Thiel (see it here) that I recently covered. Thiel was the first angel investor in Facebook with a $500K check that turned into more than $1 billion in cash.
Remember to unlock the pitch deck template that is being used by founders around the world to raise millions below.
Start A Referral Program
Now that you are getting the most out of your current customers and are serving them well, capitalize on that by soliciting them for referrals.
Design a campaign that inspires them to refer you, makes it easy for them to do so, and if necessary incentivizes them to do it too.
One of the most obvious ways to grow it simply to expand how many customers you offer your service to.
If you are still local, then expand to cover your region. Then go statewide, national and international.
Look for the fastest-growing places to go next. Even better if they have less competition.
Expand Hiring To Multiply Your Results
If your business model and everything else is working, then multiplying your results may just be about expanding your team.
If you can predictably generate leads and orders, then growth may just rely on more humans to process them. Start hiring as much as you can in a scalable way. Recognize the importance of expert talent when working out how to improve growth on your business.
Secure New Retail & Distribution Partners
You don’t have to make all the sales yourself to grow. Sometimes it just isn’t efficient. It can be faster, more profitable, and less risky to have others doing the selling and fulfillment for you.
Like getting on the shelves of Walmart, or having Eon Musk Tweet about your product, or bundling it with Google. This can supersize your business overnight.
Affiliates are another version of this. An army of retailers who take on the risk and expense of promoting and selling for you. You only pay for performance.
Franchising & Licensing
These similar but distinctly different concepts are both great ways to almost infinity scale quickly and without a large capital investment.
Licensing doesn’t have to cost you more than the legal to set it up and create the agreements. Franchising has been responsible for growing most of the world’s most iconic brands. Think McDonald’s. In fact, far more top brands are actually franchises than you’d think.
Acquire Other Faster Growing Businesses
This is how big companies like Google and Facebook manage to keep growing. They have to acquire smaller and faster-growing companies. This can be a great way to simultaneously take out the competition and champion new geographic markets too.
Sometimes it gets to the point when the most efficient and intelligent way to keep growing your company is actually to hand off the reins to someone bigger through an M&A deal.
Let someone with a much larger reach and more resources take it to the next level through a merger or by buying you out. If the mission is most important, you may not stay on long. Though you may also negotiate to continue to operate your company as a separate entity too.
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