What’s that you say you hear? Is it the sound of crickets?
Every business owner has experienced the dread of a slow January. After all, people are recovering from spending up big ahead of Christmas and many have gone away. Sure, it’s understandable and expected but it’s also absolutely woeful for the average business’ cash flow.
If you’re really feeling the pinch this year, now’s the time to put your thinking cap on and look ahead. While it may be true that a lot of your customers are away and people are burnt out from Christmas, there are still a lot of people out there who are paying attention and your product or service may be great for them.
Our experienced team of business coaches have put our brains together and devised 5 sales strategies that’ll help to get you through a slow New Year period.
Tip #1 – Look, listen and learn
What’s your customer’s problem and how can you help them to solve it?
So many business owners out there who are great at what they can do, can’t answer that simple question. This spells alarm bells in our minds because we know how imperative it is to know your customers inside and out. Not only about their problems and your solution but also how you can gain their trust. Remember, before anyone buys anything from you, your business will have to earn their trust. The slower period is a great time to get into your customer’s mindset, look at whatever data you have on-hand and really start chipping away at how you can leave a great impression on people by making them feel a certain way.
Tip #2 – Speak your customer’s language
Following on from tip #1, you really need to be speaking your customer’s language. Put yourself in their shoes for a moment. Over the Christmas and New Year period, chances are, your ideal customers have been bombarded by all kinds of sales and offers. Not every one of those sales or offers will speak to your ideal customer – cut through the noise by marketing to your customers on their terms. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel here. If you start with the intent to provide value for money and provide a twist on tested and tried methods, you’re on your way to success.
Tip #3 – Look towards the past to learn about the future
Every business has data but here’s the important thing to keep in mind about data: it’s not the data itself that’s valuable. It’s the ability to interpret the data that is helpful. Look back at the same time last year to compare, track and measure results. If things are well down, look at what has changed between now and then. If they are the same, have a think about how you can better prepare your business to equip itself for the slower periods moving forward.
Tip #4 – Don’t give up
We all have our bad days and what most people don’t understand about running a business is that you know everything. It’s not the same as having a normal job where you do your hours and go home. We’ve seen the impact this can have, particularly when business owners are looking at their numbers each day with concern. Instead of feeling depressed or giving up, ask yourself: what can I do to turn this around? It could mean visiting someone in person, making more calls each day, getting feedback from past clients… take that extra step you know your competitor won’t.
Tip #5 – Work ahead
If you happen to find yourself in a position where a slow January period is the norm, why not plan ahead and dedicate time to things you know you’re not going to have the chance to tackle later? We’re talking about updating your Business Plan, producing quality blog content, lead magnets such as eBooks and checklists and so on. A lot of our clients find that this is also a great time to pay extra attention to their website. Not only in terms of its content and ensuring everything is working, but also in relation to what Google Analytics is telling you about your site. Is there a particular page where people are leaving your site? Do you have blogs that are really hitting their mark with those coming to your page? It’s vital to look at all these areas so that you equip yourself with useful knowledge to work with throughout the year.
We wish you a bumper 2017 and know you’re capable of great things! Our Shockwave business coaches are always looking to work with dedicated business owners like you (we know you’re dedicated because you’re reading this). Learn more about how we can help you by locking in a complimentary session today. Simply call 03 9016 0428.