Experienced business leaders share some ideas on how small business owners can navigate the ‘new normal’ economy
This article is reprinted with permission from NextAvenue.org.
Companies are redesigning their websites, increasing online sales, and investing in technology and infrastructure to meet the challenges of the “new normal” economy, including persistent inflation, tech layoffs, and recession speculation. may need to catch up.
Next Avenue wanted to know what the best business strategy was this year. Below are some of the best strategies companies recommend for navigating the current economy.
Individual business-specific help is available free of charge through SCORE, which is partially funded by the US Small Business Administration, or for a fee through online platforms such as Findamentor.com. Small business owners have built relationships by networking with potential mentors at trade shows, industry conferences, and professional association meetings.
invest in talent
According to Russell Reynolds Associates’ Q4 Global Leadership Monitor, 92% of leaders believe investing in critical talent is key to navigating economic uncertainty.
As the workforce prepares for slowing economic growth and accelerating inflation, many CEOs and business leaders are looking at ways to meet these potential challenges without resorting to job cuts.
Jenna Fisher, a C-suite recruiter and leadership advisor at Russell Reynolds Associates in Palo Alto and San Francisco, believes strategically investing in innovation and embracing opportunities to find better hybrid work experiences for employees is on the list. He said it is a top priority.
Employing a talent-centric business strategy is just as important, she adds, starting with an agile leadership pipeline to quickly elevate top talent to leadership roles. An investment in people always pays off.
See also: 5 tax changes small business owners should know about this year
develop a digital personality
Scott Vasilisin, co-founder and CEO of digital marketing services provider Nxt Era Marketing, says success in this new economy will require a digital evolution. “Try to establish a digital presence on your social channels. Develop a personality for yourself or your brand and make it memorable.
“99% of the world spends half their day on their mobile phones,” he says. “You have to show up in their lives every day. Presence is everything, whether physical or digital. Just be there.”
take care of staff
Mark Lindquist, director of marketing for Community Phone, a wireless landline service that connects home phones to nearby base stations, said employees are critical to an organization’s survival amid the COVID pandemic. said.
Lindquist says build stronger relationships with your team by asking for input through established channels. “If they’re concerned about general well-being, job security, housing, or financial security, they should listen,” he says.
He also points out that there are better ways to communicate changes that affect a company than just surprise news announcements. First, ask employees for information and opinions. “When it comes to staff’s emotional and physical well-being, listening to their feedback goes a long way,” he says Lindquist. “As the economy and business begin to improve, employee morale should rise.”
Back to “old” normal
John Frigo, e-commerce manager at Best Price Nutrition, an online retailer of nutritional supplements, said: “Personally, I see it as a chance to get back to the old days.”
“What we’re seeing across all industries is that the quality of goods has gone down and the quality of customer service has gone down. Frankly, people don’t really care,” Frigo adds. Meanwhile, he continued, every day seemed like a “snow day.”
If something didn’t show up on time, there was a supply chain shortage or labor issue. True or not, it was all because of COVID. “Some of that lackluster demeanor has taken hold, so there’s an opportunity to go back to what it was before and continue to offer quality products, quality experiences, and great customer service. I think there is, ”he says Frigo.
connect with clients
Puja Mishra, president and brand strategist at Zoom into Life, a boutique brand agency that works with entrepreneurs and influencers, says humanizing a business brand is the difference between survival and success in today’s economy. said it could become
“In the aftermath of the pandemic, it’s more important than ever to connect with viewers on a human level and make them feel seen, heard, and valued,” she says. By demonstrating your business values through marketing, you can earn trust and build lasting relationships with your customers.
Mishra advises growing your brand presence and fostering deep and meaningful connections with your clients, customers or base. In other words, focus on the people you serve.
Read more: Many small business owners remain resilient and optimistic: Here’s what 2023 could mean for entrepreneurs.
try influencer marketing
Brands work with influencers to introduce their products and services to the market. The influencer then “influences” her followers to visit her website for the business, buy a product or use its services.
“We’ve been using it as one of our tools and it’s been successful so far,” said COO of Everyday Power, an online source of inspirational quotes and articles for self-improvement. says Veronica Thompson. They become the face of your brand and everything they do will be associated with your company, so choosing the right influencers is essential. ”
This kind of marketing can attract many customers or destroy a brand by relying on a single source to market the brand and distort the company’s name and likeness. Thompson adds. So if you use this method, choose your influencers with great care.
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use social media
“For better marketing, we post on social media,” says Craig Miller, co-founder of Academia Labs, an online resource for students interested in science careers and degree programs. say. “We prefer Facebook and TikTok. Facebook is very effective at reaching a targeted customer base because it has Facebook groups that are very specific to our niche.”
Meanwhile, TikTok is gaining popularity among businesses. “Since TikTok advertising is now widely used, we want to capitalize on this popularity and use the platform to market our products and services,” he adds Miller.
Before the pandemic, he said, he used LinkedIn to reach a more professional customer base, but it was slow and didn’t give the best results. Try the best social media platform for your business.
Also read: The gender pay gap has changed little over the past 20 years. what happened?
Embrace the millennial mindset
To succeed in this new economy, it’s important to understand that not only has the economy changed, but so has the workforce, adds Adrian Carter, who runs energy drink resource Beastly Energy.
“Millennials, for example, now make up more than half of our workforce and have very different expectations of what it means to have a career than previous generations,” says Carter. “They value flexibility over stability, collaboration over competition, and technology over face-to-face time.”
Millennials also have different skill sets than previous generations due to easier access to technology. You can often do more with less effort. They may be more productive despite working fewer hours than previous generations were doing at the same age.
Employers who embrace the millennial mindset (flexibility, collaboration, technology) are likely to be more productive across the company.
Jennifer Nelson is a Florida-based writer who also writes for MSNBC, FoxNews, and AARP.
This article is part of Lessons from Leaders, a Next Avenue initiative enabled by the Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation and EIX (Entrepreneur Innovation Exchange). This article is reprinted with permission from NextAvenue.org. , Inc. All rights reserved.
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