“No matter what type of business you’re running, growth should always be a top priority” said Michael Freund, founder of Shavei Israel. “The moment you allow yourself to grow stagnant and plateau is the moment you fall behind in the marketplace. To further your mission, you need to always be leveraging new opportunities to grow on a regular basis.”
At the same time, it’s always important to acknowledge that there is no “one size fits all” approach to business growth. Each organization is unique unto itself and not everyone’s journey will be the same. With that in mind, there are a number of potential strategies for growing your business that you should absolutely learn more about.
1. Focus on Your Sales Funnel
“If you want to better serve your customers, you need to understand the journey they take to go from vague interest to a sale as best you can” said Michael Freund. “The customer’s journey and optimizing your sales funnels are a big part of that.”
Sometimes, people need to be gently pushed from one end of the funnel to the other through things like content marketing and customer service. People will have questions at various stages, and you need to be there to answer them. This warms them up to make a purchase and provided that they’re satisfied, it’s also a big part of what keeps them coming back for more.
2. Increase Customer Loyalty
Many people think the key to growth involves getting as many new paying customers in the door as possible. While this is important, some might be surprised to learn that the vast majority of all sales that a business brings in don’t come from new customers at all. Instead, they come by way of repeat purchases from existing, satisfied ones.
Therefore, a great strategy to grow involves increasing customer loyalty and retention as best you can. Turn a one-time customer into a loyal brand advocate who will not only return for additional purchases in the future, but will also spread the word about how satisfied they are to friends, family members, and other acquaintances, too.
3. Network, Network, Network
Especially if you’re running a small, local business, the importance of attending networking events cannot be overstated. If there is a regular monthly meeting of business owners in your area, go out of your way to make an appearance. If there is an industry trade show in town, pay to set up a booth. If you can book a speaking engagement to give your thoughts on important topics as an industry expert, do so.
Not only will this help raise awareness about your business (and bring new customers at the same time), but it can also help you make the types of connections that you can use to grow your business in the future through the support of others.
4. Give Back to the Community
These days, customers have more options than ever when it comes to where to spend their hard-earned money. Because of that, your products and services alone aren’t enough to guarantee growth – although their quality obviously needs to be high enough to meet market expectations.
Instead, you need to go deeper and reinforce your very brand at the same time. To do this, you need to communicate who you are and what values you stand for by supporting worthy causes in the surrounding community. Volunteer your time and resources on behalf of the business to show people that you care every bit as much as they do about certain issues we all face. Obviously, you should be giving back to the community because it’s the right thing to do – but it will have the added benefit of acting as a key differentiator between you and competitors at the same time.
5. Form Partnerships Whenever Possible
Finally, don’t make the mistake of assuming that business growth is something you have to do alone. If there are similar, complementary organizations that exist in your area, see if you can form some type of strategic partnership. Maybe they could carry your products in their stores, while you do the same for them. It’s a great way to expand your reach, carving out a bit of their audience for yourself while creating a mutually beneficial situation at the same time.
About Michael Freund
Rabbi Michael Freund graduated with honors from the esteemed Princeton University, before going on to earn his MBA from Columbia University. Over the past years, he has accomplished many things, including becoming a published author, a syndicated columnist, and a passionate advocate that regularly serves the Jewish community in Israel.
Freund moved to Israel over 25 years ago, where he continues to raise his beloved family. He also spends time involving himself in as many humanitarian and political efforts as possible. Despite the fact that he hasn’t technically been a New Yorker in over 25 years, he still loves the Mets and always will.