Sounds a little basic, doesn’t it? But, are you in charge? Are you a proactive person who meets challenges, issues, etc., head-on, or are you reactive? Many businesses fail because business owners are either conflict avoidant, or worse, close their eyes to daily ownership issues. Regardless of the stress involved, deal with the issues. Choose to act.
Remember the old adage, “Failure to plan is a plan for failure?” It’s true. Brainstorm and ask yourself and your employees, “Where do we want to be in one year?” Have a destination—from where you are now, where do you want to be this time next year? Take bite-sized portions when developing a plan. In other words, start with just a few goals. One goal could be that you want to increase sales by X% in one year. Another could be that you want to add 1000 customers to your base in one year. Maybe you want to expand your market area.
Whatever the goal, then develop no more than 2-3 measurements on how you will get there. Let’s go back to the example that we want to increase sales by 15% in one year. Is that a realistic task? If it is, then develop 2-3 ways to accomplish this. This might mean that you look at an outside sales person that develops relationships with area members of a chamber of commerce. Such a step means that future sales could be realized by developing those relationships. Another way of reaching this goal is to stock the right products and be creative about promoting them. If you’re relying on conventional ways of promoting your store such as newspaper inserts, sales sheets, etc., be aware that you’re throwing away money because your customers are becoming highly dependent on mobile apps.
All too often businesses will talk and talk about their plan. Unfortunately, they don’t put it into place. Of those that do put the plan in place, far fewer will have the discipline to follow it. And of those, fewer will work the plan on a daily basis.
My daily routine that I’ve developed over the years requires me to work my plan on a daily basis. I don’t let even one day slip by because it’s too easy to become complacent. Don’t fall into the trap of saying, “I can do that another day.” You can’t. And here’s why—you’ve been saying that for a while. All those “other days” start to add up and you’ll have to address them. Why not do it on a daily basis? When you look at your plan and your measurements, it is far easier to correct something when it happens. As you might expect, it’s far more difficult to address when considerable time has passed.
You were probably taught at an early age that the only thing that is constant is change. Look around—as a society, we are changing all the time. It’s no wonder that as business owners we also have to change. This requires us to be critical listeners.
We must become better at listening to what our customers are telling us. If your customers lament, “you don’t have Bubba’s 2015 Hillbilly Cabernet” they are telling you that because you don’t have it and they will seek out a store that has it. Or, “your lines are long” or “isn’t there an easier way of buying from you?” are clear indicators that the buying experience isn’t optimal.
So, now that you’ve listened, what are you going to do about it? Look at your plan that you’re working each day (ah-hem) and make stepwise refinements to address the problems. Start stocking that special Cabernet if it is following a trend voiced by many customers. Look at technology to make a customer’s buying experience more enjoyable.
But please, don’t stop there—always challenge your plan because if you don’t, your competition will. Never rest. Listen. Refine. Polish.
Our Mobile Marketing Specialists can help get you in shape for 2018. Let us show you how your own store app can propel you further. We know what we’re doing and so do you. Together we form a remarkable team to make your company grow. Give us a call now and we’ll show you what we can do! Call 469.420.9447 to secure your store’s future. You can also visit us at http://www.bottlecapps.com.