Why Small Businesses Struggle
It is easy to find a hundred excuses why small companies often struggle or completely fail, and admittedly there are legitimate reasons as well. Lack of financing, mismanagement of funds, poor marketing, inexperience, miscalculated business plans, and market research are often major contributors. So what is the most common reason? Of course as CEO of a marketing company it is my job to tell you marketing is the fix all solution...but that simply is not true. Marketing is the doorway for people to see, know, and understand your business but the lack of marketing is only one aspect. There are some companies that market very little and have incredible success.
So what is the common thread in almost every business that fails or struggles to keep the doors open? It is a company who is small, struggling, and desperately needs more sales but seems to dislike their customers. Owners and staff will go so far as to sit at the local bar, a social event, or even a trade show and openly criticize the one reason they survive...their customers. If your customers don't excite you and your staff every time they walk through the door, your chances of survival are slim at best. Although there are difficult customers that complain and nit-pick everything, most are in the same boat as you. They want to get the most value for the lowest price with the least stress. By having a bad attitude toward even the worst customer, your business is creating a wall between itself and the customer. In fact, what you are creating is a conflict with the small percentage of bad customers wich then inevitably spills over onto the good customers.
Make no mistake; negativity is contagious and it often starts from management and then filters into the rest of the company. If you are a manager or owner you better appreciate your customers more than anyone at your company. Old adages like "the customer is always right" implies that "even if they are wrong, pretend they are right". This attitude creates an atmosphere of fake customer service. Which can be spotted a mile away. Those type of companies get the reviews such as "ya those guys are alright, they do a decent job" which is basically saying your business can deliver, but if there was a better option, they would take it. Don't be fake with your customers, if they are wrong help them realize what needs to be done to make it right, in the end they will appreciate your company more.
A small business doesn't always have the funds for an aggressive marketing plan, although, I would argue that if you don't have the funds you can't afford to not invest in marketing. With that said if a company like Crownsmen Partners creates the most incredible marketing strategy for you and gets more people through the door but you aren't happy so see them, it will do your company more harm than good. Bad news spreads much faster than we can raise the awareness of your company.
So before you spend even a dollar on a new location, update your website, produce a commercial, or start a social media campaign spend time with your team explaining and helping them understand how important your customers are. They are your lifeblood and every time you weaken the relationship with your customer you have just a little less life supply to grow your company.
If would like any information on company growth, please contact us.
Jerrod Downey | CEO
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