There are numerous corporate challenges unique to small businesses and start-ups. While the road toward business growth and success is navigable, it can often be helpful to consult with professionals who have experience starting and managing a small business. In a recent article for Fox Business, contributor Steve Greenbaum explained that challenges should not keep anyone from opening a business.
“That’s because there’s a trove of resources online and in every community across the country that can help any business operate efficiently, target their customers and appear professional,” Greenbaum wrote. “Using a combination of their own know-how, affordable computer programs and local professional services, small business owners must focus on the following five crucial areas of their businesses to increase the likelihood of success.”
Greenbaum went on to outline five areas to focus on:
- Create a powerful and consistent brand image
- Identify website objectives
- Optimize web presence
- Understand basic accounting and regularly practice it
- Approach customer acquisition in a disciplined and deliberate manner
A Powerful Brand Image
“Your brand image is what both current and prospective customers think about your company,” Greenbaum wrote. “This image is developed through repeated interactions with customers, so it’s essential that you send them consistent messages. This means having the same look and feel in all forms of marketing, including direct mail, online, email and more. For a brand image to accurately stick in the customers’ minds, it must be true to its product and services and the company must live up to all its promises.”
All Headline News recently released a series of social media tips for small businesses, explaining that while this marketing realm is challenging, it is a necessity for many small businesses to be successful. Susan Linning, president of Echo Social Media & Marketing, suggested that for smaller companies operating under restricted budgets, the business’ email database of contacts or distribution lists can be used to refine social media marketing’s target audience.
Tips for Small Business Owners to Grow Business
When it comes to focusing on the aforementioned five points, technology and communication solutions can have a major impact on a small business’ level of success. When aiming to solidify a powerful and consistent brand image, AccessDirect’s virtual PBX can be particularly valuable.
The advanced auto attendant feature of the virtual system is an integral part of providing a consistent professional brand image. The automated attendant will answer all incoming calls with customized professionally recorded greetings and offer callers a menu of options to help direct incoming inquiries appropriately. Through the customer experience, callers will be consistently delivered an established brand image.
Furthermore, advanced features of the virtual PBX system can be beneficial for optimizing a small business’ web presence and fine-tuning customer acquisition approaches. For example, AccessDirect’s voice to email tool sends an alert to a user’s email inbox notifying him or her that a voicemail message has been received. If the call is an inquiry from a prospective customer, this advanced functionality will allow all leads to be followed up on promptly. In addition, this integrates voice communications with the web. Funneling all interactions into a central location can help enable employees to respond effectively and contribute to the success and growth of the business.