It’s springtime and this is a great time to not just prune the bushes outside, but this is equally a good time to take a hard look at your small business. After you assess how well, or not so well your small business is doing, it might just be time to do something new. I have four areas of to consider changing as you reinvent your small business brand.
Change Your Story – People do not remember pitches and slogans they remember the story you tell about your business. Reframe your message about who you serve and the results you develop for your customer. Remember it’s not about you — it’s about the problems you solve. Focus on the new problem that you want to specialize in solving. You may not want to eradicate your old brand entirely. Maybe think of it like getting a facelift. Honor what you learned when you launched the 1.0 version of your business, and emerge as the new and improved version.
Change Your Target – Small businesses succeed when they focus on a specific target customer. As you go through the process to reinvent your business, you will likely need to focus on an entirely new customer base. It’s actually easier to do that. People who already do business with you will always try to remind you of who you used to be. It’s exhausting to constantly reeducate people about your new thing. When I first got into business, my firm Quintessence Multimedia was a video production company. These days we are a social media marketing firm, but I remember the first year or two when I changed my market, people still wanted to refer to me as “the video lady.” Subsequently, as my business changed my customers changed, too. These days, I have only clients in Philadelphia where my business is based. You must make a mindset shift first in how you see your business and others will follow your lead.
Change Your Style – Your physical brand is a reflection of how you do business. Change your logo and brand colors as you reinvent your small business. Give your website a refresh. Send out a sleek direct mail piece to all your existing customers. Position yourself as a thought leader by blogging, seeking out speaking opportunities and sharing the latest trends in your industry. Start doing something new in social media. How about launching a video channel on YouTube? Get a new headshot and work with a stylist to update your look. When you feel and act differently people will treat you differently and your business will grow. People are drawn to people who look and act like they thought about what was going to happen before they left their office to attend a networking event.
Change Your Strategy – The most important step is to change your strategy. Create a new vision, mission, and goals for yourself and your business. Create a vision board of your end game. Get clear on “Why” you started your business, and “Why” you are staying in business. Take the time to think about the pain your customers have and how you can be the best solution. Look at what you have accomplished and keep things that worked and get rid of everything else. Success leaves clues everywhere. Study your competition and look for potential partnerships. Many times it’s better to partner than to compete.
How will you update and reinvent your business this Spring?
Butterfly courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti / www.freedigitalphotos.net