Is your business slowing down? After that initial wave of success, it can feel like you’ve lost momentum when sales start to level off. All the business skills you’ve accumulated before the launch of your new venture paid off in the early going, but what should you do when there’s a lull?
It’s not a time to panic. It’s a time to plan. Here are five things you can do to capitalize on this “downtime.”
6 ways to grow your business when it’s slow
Whether your business is seasonal or part of a growing trend in consumer engagement with robust competition, there can be troughs. But you don’t need to throw in the towel.
Here are six things you can do to grow your business, even when it feels like things are slowing down. They’ll actually inspire growth.
1. Market yourself
You’ve built the business and built a strong team. Do people know you and your personal brand?
This is a good time to remind your clients why they invested in you. This can include a direct mail or email campaign or time spent on the phone—something that puts you top of mind again.
2. Build networks
Your business has slowed down. Does that mean others have, as well?
What a perfect time to build connections with people who might want to share resources, contacts or ideas? There may be opportunities for shared marketing campaigns or special events.
You’re probably not the only business struggling. Reach out and find out.
3. Rethink your business model
Are you locked into the notion of a bricks-and-mortar business?
Maybe it’s time to think outside the box.
Can you find a way to deliver the service to people who can’t come to you? Is it feasible to start an online service or pay closer attention to the contact link on your webpage?
4. Ask for help
It’s natural for entrepreneurs to try and ‘go it alone,” you’ve built your business from the ground up, and you’re accustomed to wearing many hats.
Delegation is a learned skill.
Can you bring in outside help to get your business kickstarted during a slowdown? Maybe someone to do administrative tasks while reaching out to past clients or planning a new marketing strategy?
5. Work on time management
Downtime is a good time to look at how you handle your schedule. It’s one of the most underrated business skills.
Are you getting bogged down with nonproductive tasks like sorting your inbox or robbing yourself of personal time because of inefficiencies in your day-planning?
If you put a strong system in place while things aren’t so hectic, that system will pay dividends when your business begins to thrive again.
6. Ask questions
Survey your customers and your employees.
What’s working? What’s not? Encourage your clients and your staff to be blunt and honest. There might be parts of your business model that have become obsolete or opportunities to add to your offerings, whether they’re products or services.
If you don’t ask, you won’t know what your customers want and how your employees feel about delivering it.
Business is slow, but you don’t have to be
Your business will inevitably experience lulls from time to time. But smart entrepreneurs know to seize the opportunity to hone their business skills and plan ahead.
Take the time to market yourself, build stronger networks, and examine your business model. Don’t forget to ask for outside help. A fresh perspective might be just what your enterprise needs to find new life.
We have the tools to help you jumpstart your business or bring new energy to your non-profit.
Contact us and find out what we can do for you.