Conceiving ideas and starting a business may look easy but growing a business is not a cinch. The Corporate Affairs Commission claims to have registered over 3 million businesses in Nigeria as of 2019 alone.
Three more years have gone by and thousands of new businesses have joined the list, excluding many other unregistered businesses scattered across the country.
What does this mean for you as an entrepreneur?
You are up against intense competition, government policies, and other factors that can impede the growth of your business.
This is why entrepreneurship is not for everyone. It takes a burning vision, grit, and consistent hard work to grow your business and remain relevant despite all odds.
As an aspiring or existing entrepreneur, here are a few factors to help your business thrive in 2022 and beyond.
Unique Value Proposition (UVP)
Your value proposition is the big ‘WHY’ of your business. It is the compelling statement that explains why your customers should buy your product or service amidst other options they have.
Questions like: ‘what problem is my business solving for its customers? What makes my business unique? What do customers stand to benefit when they buy from me? will help you create a unique value proposition that your business can run with.
Consider your UVP as the foundation upon which your business structure is built and the guide that informs your business decisions going forward.
At this point, you’re probably wondering, how do I create a unique value proposition as a new or existing business owner?
Start by highlighting your product’s benefits, features, and the experience it provides your customers. Then create a list of your customers’ wants, needs, and challenges that can prevent them from buying. This process will help you articulate your business strengths and the answers will form the basic components of your unique value proposition.
Most importantly, your UVP should position your product/service as the ultimate solution that your customer needs.
Your reach or visibility as a business owner is directly proportional to your marketing efforts. The rule of thumb in result-driven marketing is simple: if you don’t put yourself out there, your customers may never find you. And ‘out there’ here refers to the expansive world of both traditional and digital marketing.
First, you have to know your customers. This will help you find them easily and become strategic in your marketing approach. Creating a customer avatar/buyer persona is therefore expedient: this is a profile of your ideal customer which is not limited to their age, gender, education, spending habits, location, interests, challenges, motivations, and other information that will help you achieve a faster customer acquisition. With a defined buyer persona, you can now concentrate your marketing efforts on your target audience.
Then, you need a marketing strategy. Whether you’re doing the traditional form of marketing, leveraging the digital approach, or a combination of both, a solid marketing strategy is key to achieving your goals and getting a good return on investment. Finally, you can now take action by building brand awareness, generating engagement, and retaining your business name on your customers’ lips as your business grows.
Good marketing is extremely important as it will help your customers to know your brand and learn about your products/services before trusting you well enough to make a purchase as they go farther in the sales funnel.
Thinking like a customer and acting like a business owner is an apt way of applying a customer-centric approach in your business dealings.
Every customer should have a personalized experience whenever they shop from you. No matter how big your business gets, you must not lose sight of your customers’ needs and how your product helps to meet those needs. It’s the reason you gained their trust in the first place.
So, whatever update or innovation you are bringing into your business, you should pause and reflect on the likely effects it will have on your existing and prospective customers. Will your new approach influence the purchasing choices of your clients? Will it affect their perception of your business?
Asking for feedback promotes customer inclusion and when your customers feel seen, special, and appreciated, their loyalty comes easy, and spreading the word about your business is the least of what they’ll do.
Deliver On Your Promise
You can have a compelling unique proposition, great marketing strategies, and impeccable customer service but if your product or service doesn’t live up to the expectations of your customers, the business is as good as gone.
Sometimes, business owners start with good intentions and quality offerings for their clients. Then months later, the line between integrity and making profits becomes blurred and the quality of products and services is tampered with.
Customers become dissatisfied and move on to other competitors.
In the long run, such businesses end up with a dented image and bad reviews that will take a long time to fix before they can regain customers’ trust again.
As a thriving business owner, you must be obsessed with integrity. Nothing should make you break the promise you made to your clients in your unique value proposition. It’s best to under promise and overdeliver than have a brand nobody wants to do business with. Always deliver on your promise.
Profitable Business Partnerships
Your business will thrive when you leverage profitable business partnerships that will help you achieve your business goals, make more sales, and relieve you of some ‘entrepreneurship burden’.
There are businesses whose products and services complement yours, extend a hand of partnership; collaborate for the greater good.
An aspect of your business is logistics and as a growth-conscious entrepreneur, you have to carefully consider which logistics company is the best for your business.
You need a reliable delivery partner that will provide a seamless logistics experience for your customers at affordable rates. This way, your customers spend less on shipping and you also get to enjoy other exclusive benefits that GIF Logistics offers to its registered Ecommerce customers, known as CLASS Merchants. By subscribing to the GIG Class Plan on the GIGGo app through the ‘Upgrade to E-commerce’ option, you are guaranteed lifetime access to priority shipping, free insurance on shipments capped at one hundred thousand naira, 20% off shipping costs, a dedicated account officer, and online visibility for your business through the Digital Millionaire platform.
There are limitless opportunities for your business when you identify the right partners for your business and come on board with them.
Venturing into business is a risk but you can manage these risks and thrive by considering these factors and implementing them accordingly.