A Fresh Start: How to Prepare Your Business for a Productive and Profitable 2018
New Year’s resolutions aren’t just for self-awareness and personal goals. For small business owners, these annual resolutions are one of the best ways to evaluate progress and determine expectations for the future. So while you are thinking about that goal to spend more time outdoors, take the time to think about where you see your business in the next year. No matter what part of the business you want to focus on, a little change here or there will go a long way.
There’s no better way to plan your future marketing goals than to review your previous efforts. What worked last year? What didn’t work? If you have analytics available, review which plans provided the best returns on your investments and which plans worked better than others. If you don’t feel like something is working, either modify it or get rid of it - don’t keep a plan just because you
spent time working on it.
Additionally, make sure you know your competitors. How can you attempt to stand out from the crowd and offer a unique experience to your customers if you don’t know what your competitors are offering? See if there are missing products or services that your competitor doesn’t offer that you can use to set yourself apart from them.
Without a budget or a plan, a business runs the risk of spending more money than it is taking in, or conversely, not spending enough money to grow the business and compete. If you have a financial planner, now is the time to talk with them about your ability to match your budget to your 2018 goals. If they aren’t realistic, adjust your goals to make sure your budget - and your profits -
stay healthy and happy for the new year.
Don’t forget that your employees are people, too. Maybe this past year you noticed that your employees don’t seem as comfortable in their working environment as you are or maybe you just want to amp up your management skills. No matter the reason, commit yourself and your organization to a top-to-bottom brainstorm about the value you offer your employees, rather than just your customers. This little shift in perspective on your part could result in surprising benefits.
At the end of the day, we all just want our business to succeed. Take the time to think about your goals and how to put them into action. Test boundaries and see how far you’ll go!