The statistic is shocking: 80% of new businesses fail within the first 18 months. The reasons behind this astronomical figure vary depending on the source, but the percentage remains consistent. To become part of the 20% of businesses that make it, you need to stand out. One way to do so is by carving a niche for your company through a prominent and positive business image. Here are five secrets to help you ensure your business image has a solid foundation that will go the distance.
- Create a Solid Brand
Your brand is where it all begins, so if your brand seems incomplete, consider hiring a brand design agency. A good agency will help you combine your values, your goals, and everything that makes your company’s value proposition unique into one consistent brand image that will resonate with your target markets.
- Build a Killer Website
Once you have established your brand, you need a website to display it. Your website is your best salesperson in a competitive global economy. It never takes a vacation, doesn’t ask for a raise and you don’t have to pay into its 401K. In addition to aesthetic appeal, your website should contain testimonials of satisfied customers. Your potential customers need to hear their peers say your business is excellent to believe it. Unless you are a digital whizz, this is one project that you should entrust to a reputable professional and weight the cost against the return that you can expect.
- Maintain a Customer Database
For many businesses, it can be more expensive to win a new customer than it is to retain an existing one. To this end, one of your best investments of time is to create and maintain a detailed customer database complete with all relevant details and history. More importantly, you need to capitalize on this information and stay in touch with your customers by offering targeted deals and discounts or an informative newsletter or blog post. Whatever your desired message,, be sure to personalize it to your customer, and segment the list whenever possible to serve specific needs.
- Behave with Integrity
The most important thing you can do that has no monetary cost, is to have integrity in your business dealings. Nothing can undermine a business more quickly than the kinds of corporate behavior that demonstrates a disconnect between the stated morals of a company and its actions. The best way to ensure that you are running a transparent organization is to listen to your employees, your customers, and even the public at large. All of these voices can help you refine and improve your marketing and business practices to reflect your values and morals.
- Find the Influencers
Once you have a reliable brand that is based on integrity, you will be able to incorporate the power of the influencer. In this increasingly online world, an influencer is defined as an individual who has a significant social media following and presence. People believe what this person has to say and would likely listen to their recommendations. An effective influencer will vouch for your business to potential customers, which could skyrocket your profit and popularity.
Your business image is your opportunity to stand out in a noisy, global economy. Influencers will line up to promote a successful brand that handles its dealings with integrity. Customers will be drawn to a company with a great website that seems to understand their specific needs. Invest now in creating a robust business image and reap exponential dividends later when you have ensured the survival of your company.