Entrepreneurship is a popular endeavor for individuals who no longer want to work for someone else. In the last few years, small business application rates have increased exponentially as more and more workers decided to strike out on their own. Whether you have vast savings to draw from for startup costs or are working from scratch, running your own business is tiresome and difficult work.
But plenty of entrepreneurs make it. After months or years of putting in the work, they start to turn a profit and earn a living while doing what they are passionate about. Maybe you fall into this category. Your business has thrived and is delivering products or services to happy customers. So what is the next step?
Scaling your business can be just as difficult as starting it in the first place. Maybe you feel like you have exhausted your energy just building the brand to where it is today. There are strategies that can help you in your dreams of growing the business further, even when you feel like you cannot take on any more work. Here are five strategies that will help you scale your business when it is time to expand.
Make a Plan
Before you start trying to scale your business, you need to think about how. Evaluate your current processes and how they could be improved. Consider how you might outsource some business processes to a third party to free up resources for growth. Lay out goals that are SMART, (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound), to give your business a road map toward success. Come up with KPIs to measure so that you can see what strategies are working and which ones are not effective as you pursue greater profits.
If you start working toward growth right away before doing your due diligence and strategizing, it will be very easy to encounter obstacles that will derail your plans.
Create Additional Revenue Streams
One of the most effective ways to scale your company is to create additional revenue streams. Maybe you need resources to invest in your business further to allow for that growth. There are several ways to do this that will generate more income. You could become an affiliate marketer for another business that will pay you to advertise its products to your audience. Another option is to invest in stocks or real estate. Property ownership can be perfect for bringing in additional cash through rental payments from tenants. If you sell a service of some kind, you could turn it into a subscription service to make more money.
By adding revenue streams, you can increase the cash flow into your business which will give you the capital you need to invest in growth.
Migrate Business Processes to the Cloud
Cloud-based computing is a growing trend and is making huge waves in the business sector. Companies are learning that moving their business applications to the cloud allows for faster scalability, easier collaboration with their teams, more opportunities for automation, and more time available for employees to focus on other important tasks. Though migrating your programs and applications to the cloud is a complex process, cloud services can help make sure that the transition goes smoothly.
Cloud solutions give you the power to handle customer service, project management, automated processes, and other computing need, making your business operate more efficiently than ever. This will free up your time and energy so you can dedicate it to scaling your company.
Hone Your Product/Services
This step is essential before you start working to scale your business and as a part of that process as well. Your brand should be in a constant state of improving your offerings to customers to make sure that it is they are adapting to changing needs in the market. Before you try to scale, make sure that the product is high-quality and serves its purpose to your customers exactly as intended. Once you begin to experience growth, keep quality control as a top priority and be ready to adjust.
Craft a Marketing Plan
Growth is dependent upon marketing. If no one else hears about your product or service and how it can solve their problems, how will you increase sales and bring in more revenue?
Make sure that you understand your target audience and what they care about as it relates to what you offer. Craft some audience personas to curate your content in a way that will engage their emotions. Conduct research to find out what channels your target audience is consuming the most and where they are most likely to interact with your brand. Again, set SMART goals for your marketing efforts to track your progress and measure KPIs for your messaging strategy. Ask for customer testimonials about your product. Your marketing plan will go a long way toward determining how quickly you can scale your business.
Where Will You Focus Your Scaling Efforts?
The strategies listed above are all good starting blocks for scaling your business, but they are not a one-size-fits-all approach to growth. Their effectiveness will depend on your specific brand and the audience that you are trying to reach. Choose a few methods to really focus your scaling efforts on a plan that suits your company and then you can dedicate more time and energy into making them work.