I was reading an article written by Warren Buffett about investing yesterday and he mentioned a local bank that went out of business recently. The vacant building was taken over by a new restaurant. The new owner quickly put a sign in the front window that reads, "Put your mouth where your money used to be". I thought that this was not only comical, but also genius marketing. As I thought about it a little more, it's also a great lesson about being a business owner during a tough economy. Here are a couple of thoughts that I think you might be able to apply to your business:
1. Tough times present great opportunity
With all the "gloom and doom" in the news, you may think the world is about to end! However, whenever things look bad, there are usually great opportunities to be had. Here in my own neighborhood, there are a number of stores and restaurants that have gone out of business. This presents a great opportunity for other businesses to take advantage of the "fire sale" that's going on in every area of the economy. In fact, every one of these locations already has new businesses opening up! The opportunity for you as a business owner is to invest in your business while everything is on sale.
2. Kick your competition while they are down
When the economy goes bad and times are tough, the first thing most businesses do is cut their spending. The first area that they usually cut is their marketing budget, which is a huge mistake! The reason that you are cutting your spending is because you are anticipating your revenues going down. Well, if you cut your marketing and sales efforts, your sales are guaranteed to go down! Instead, take advantage of the mistake that most of your competition is going to make and keep investing, and perhaps even increase your investment in your marketing and sales efforts. I think you will find that it is more cost effective because prices are low, and you'll be able to steal a significant amount of business from your competition when you do this. This will help your business grow, and when the economy comes back, it will grow exponentially!
3. Review your business fundamentals
The reason the economy is in bad shape is because many people and businesses have overleveraged themselves with credit. Now is the time to learn from the mistakes of others and do a gut check with your business. Are you over leveraged? Is your business profitable, or are you fooling yourself at the end of the month? Do you have solid financial reports and statements that allow you to make good business decisions? Are you making good solid investments in the growth of your business, or are you making poor investment choices that are going to hurt you in the long run? These are all great questions that you should always be asking yourself, but even more now.
4. Take advantage of the pain
Great marketers know that people buy when there is pain. So, with the economy the way it is, there are all sorts of things that are causing people pain, and therefore, all sorts of opportunities to make money by providing solutions to these problems.
Take the time to think about what problems are being caused, and how your business can help solve those problems. Then, market your solution to the people having these issues, and you'll generate some new customers and revenue streams for your business!
Take advantage of the tough times and, "put your mouth where your money used to be", by following the four points above, and your business will be better off for it!
Are you ready to take your business to the next level? Click here to learn how!