Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Top Ten Business Survival Strategies for 2009

Guerilla Marketing: A 25 year old concept, especially valid today. Use aggressive, unconventional, creative, and low-budget tactics to acquire new customers.

Customer Satisfaction: It is so much easier to retain a current customer and expand business with them than to acquire a new customer. Make sure you are better than any competitor.

Value Selling: How are you better than competitors, and why are you worth more? Answering these questions will maintain your margin.

“AS IF”: A big part of beating the competition is believing that you can, and acting “as if” you will. People believe you, when you act with unquestionable credibility.

Partnering: Who else can bring you customers and/or promote your product or service? Develop strategic alliances to boost possibilities.

Prepare for the Unexpected: Could a major client pull its business? Conversely, what if the recovery happens quickly? Prepare plan “A”, plan “B”, and plan “C”.

Cash Management: Hold on to cash. Prioritize payments based on who can “kill” you – IRS, EDD, landlord, mortgage holder, raw materials suppliers (that you need for your product) etc. Other vendors have to learn to wait.

Solidify your Banking Relationship: Too many companies are being surprised by their banks pulling lines of credit, refusing to renew, etc. Make sure you know where you stand with your bank. Shop for a new one before you need to.

Controls: Cut waste and inefficiency. Apply lean techniques to every aspect of your business, with the possible exception of marketing and advertising.

Work Harder and Smarter: Your time and value as a leader are critical. Make every minute count!
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