According to Investopedia, 20% of new businesses fail within the first year. That figure goes up to a whopping 45% after four years. That is almost 1 in 2 startups, destined to fail. As a result, we now have a growing population of budding entrepreneurs struggling with heightened levels of pessimism – an expected outcome in the eyes of anyone who considers the rather tragic odds.
Naturally, this trend has sparked interest and conversations surrounding what early-stage founders must do to avoid such sinister outcomes.
At ‘Be The Boss’, facilitating entrepreneurial excellence, is central to our mission. We therefore would like to highlight some commonly overlooked growth strategies that early-stage founders can use to avoid failure.
Leveraging Technology & Automation
Although seemingly unbelievable, the reality is that as many as 1 in 2 business owners fail to utilise technology effectively.
The reasons often range from lack of technical adeptness to choosing the right technologies, integrations, and several in-between barriers.
While these reasons are valid, businesses that aim to thrive, like top global brands, have to leverage technology and automation. The benefits are endless. For example, saving operational costs and providing high-quality customer service are top-ranking drivers of sustainable growth and success.
Technology enables you to learn more about your audience and competition and use the insights to gain a competitive advantage. With automation, you save time and costs on tasks such as audience engagement, product & service promotion, record keeping, performance tracking, and talent recruitment.
So, if your goal is to give your startup a better shot at flourishing long term, consider adopting technology and automation. Now is a great time to get started.
Focusing on Customer Experience
Founders are typically focused on acquiring more customers and increasing sales. On the surface, this is a good thing. However, the quest for more sales and clients shouldn’t be at the expense of customer experience.
Ensuring the highest-level customer experience is a sure fire way to earn loyalty from your existing customers. And more often than not, these loyal customers will spread the good word about your business to their family, friends, and colleagues.
Having people endorse your business will bring you more business. It is one of the most compelling and organic forms of advertising. Semrush reports that 9 out of 10 people show more trust in a brand when a family member or friend recommends it.
Prioritising customer experience in your business strategy, further underlines the role of technology and automation. As mentioned earlier, technology makes it possible for you to gather vital information about your customers so you can serve them better.
Investing in Personal Branding
As a new founder, chances are you have an endless to-do list. From product launch to team building and acquiring customers, there is so much to do and so little time at your disposal. Should personal branding even be on your mind?
The answer is a resounding YES. While putting time and resources into elevating your profile can seem narcissistic, it is essential for growth and success.
In today’s ultra-competitive business world, factors like brand credibility, recognition, and trust play vital roles in setting your chances of survival. And as a new business, you need all the trust and recognition you can get.
Forbes reports that over 80% of investors consider and prioritise brand recognition when making investment decisions. That statistic alone sufficiently demonstrates the power of personal branding.
Personal branding is the way to go if you want to showcase your unique strengths in the most compelling and organised manner. It helps you develop consistency across the board. And most importantly, it levels out the playing field and enables you to compete against giants in your industry.
With all that in mind, don’t you think it is time to put on your branding shoes and set your business on the path of long-term growth?
Leveraging Social Media Communities
Not so long ago, placing your business on social media was enough to give you a competitive advantage. But given the widespread use of social media in today’s business world, merely setting up social media profiles for business isn’t the hack it used to be.
While social media is as effective as ever for driving brand growth, there is an uprising trend to take note of and leverage to achieve desirable growth metrics. And this trend involves the nurturing of communities on social media.
Think of a community as a close-knit group of ideal customers and prospects for your brand. In that community, users can ask questions, learn more about your products/services, make purchases, and leave feedback.
Taking advantage of social media communities scores one up on conventional social media use because it allows you to better engage directly with high-intent prospects/customers. It is about making a community out of people who find your offer valuable.
But “why is this necessary?” you might ask. What’s the point of focusing on a group when you can reach everyone?
- When people join your community, it suggests that you have what they want.
- Resistance is significantly lower among people who are already interested in your offer.
- You enjoy an easier path to conversion and sales.
- Increased success with customer acquisition because people on the outside feel a curiosity-driven compulsion to get in for an experience with your brand.
Consulting a Business Growth Expert
Many early-stage founders are guilty of failing to invest in expert consultation or guidance.
Although the idea of being able to do it all by yourself, can be alluring, growing a business from scratch is no mean feat. Expert guidance can improve your chances of success.
Imagine you own a bakery, and you want to increase the number of customers you have. Apart from your sales goals, you will have other pressing tasks that require attention.
From this point, things can become overwhelming quickly. But with a business advisor in your corner, you can give attention to other areas of your baking business and leave the expert to focus on identifying ways to deliver your growth objectives.
A growth strategist can help you think outside the box and implement creative strategies to drive growth. Plus, they offer support as you work to implement their ideas. They can also help you find and benefit from growth-focused programs in your specific industry.
Many businesses have one common goal: business growth. Whether or not you achieve this goal is mostly a matter of strategy.
Fortunately, you don’t have to bother about which ones work. Taking note of the strategies in this post and putting in the work to apply them is an excellent way to gain one good step ahead of the competition and move farther away from failure.
If you need help with developing growth strategies for your business, why not book a Build My Strategy Session? Find out more by visiting the services page.