Every business owner hopes to reach the peak of business success. You know, when you’re just crushing it—when smooth operations and growing profits allow you to breathe a satisfied sigh of contentment and pride. This year that feeling may seem farther from your reach than ever. A slower economy and a world trapped in daily self-distance protocols may leave you feeling directionless and disconnected.
But, remember what Albert Einstein once said, “In the midst of every crisis, lies great opportunity.”
Here are seven ways to ride out the pandemic and come out on top.
1. Leverage the Power of Internal Champions
Every business needs internal champions. Internal champions are those team members who know every detail about your business and can provide intelligent feedback and well-informed advice. When it’s time to make important decisions in your business, you want the support and opinion from those internal champions.
Many business owners make the mistake and surround themselves with “yes men.” What’s the point of having people only agree with you? Decisions should never be made in a vacuum. You’ve hired (or should have hired) people with their own experiences and insights, so listen to them. If you’re not sure you have internal champions, now is a good time to find out.
Coach employees and build a bench of proficient team members. Encourage debate in your business and you’ll reap the rewards by knowing you’ve thoroughly vetted the crucial decisions in your company.
2. Create the Whole Solution
What is it that your customer wants from your business? Without trying to be obvious, you’re never going to find out if you don’t ask. And now may be the perfect time to ask. Today’s customers have been through the wringer when it comes to getting what they want and need. Remember that not so long ago, toilet paper was the hot commodity!
Now is the time to lead the pack and give them what they want, when they want it. Whether it’s information, products, services, technology, or even advice, you’ll gain their loyalty by providing the whole solution to their problems.
At CorpNet we understood this need. That’s why we created the CorpNet Partner Program. By partnering with CorpNet, your business can offer a variety of business formation services directly to your clients from business registration to intellectual property management…without you having to do any extra work.
Through CorpNet’s Partner Program, you can offer your clients business formation and compliance services in all 50 states, including:
- Incorporation & LLC Filings
- Annual Report Due Date Monitoring, report preparation, and filings
- Registered Agent Services
- Other Corporate Filings including Amendments, Conversions and Dissolutions
3. Elevate Your Solution for Decision Makers
In any B2B transaction, there is an average of 6.8 people involved in each B2B purchase decision, according to LinkedIn research. You’ll also find, the bigger the purchase price, the more decision-makers you’ll have to convince.
The key is creating solutions with the decision-makers in mind. A sales director wants to hear about the product or service’s marketability. Similarly, the CFO wants to make sure the price is within the company’s budget.
In addition, you can’t always count on the same decision makers being involved when it’s time to renew a contract. This is especially true in an economy experiencing high turnover. Do your due diligence and research which decision-makers are in play, which of your competitors are in the running, and what new problems your clients are looking to solve.
4. Bundle Your Services Differently by Persona
A user persona is a fictional depiction of your business’s ideal customer based on research and marketing analytics. Most businesses have more than one user persona to target and therefore should have different solutions for each.
At CorpNet, we have many user personas from the sole proprietor starting out and needing help with trademarks and business licenses, to expanding corporations looking to sell products across the U.S. Each persona has its own specific needs and therefore we strive to meet those needs with different solutions bundles.
Talk to your sales team and check activity across your website and social media channels to see how your user personas may have changed in the time of COVID-19. Knowing these personas can help your business relate to your customers on a more personal level.
5. Get Referrals From Existing Customers
The numbers don’t lie, referral marketing works and you’ll find a lot of supporting statistics. For example, consumers trust their friends’ recommendations seven times more than conventional advertising and when considering a purchase, 84% of shoppers trust recommendations from family members, friends, and colleagues.
Now all you need to do is figure out how to get your customers to recommend your business. You probably already have loyal customers who are telling others about your business and you don’t even know it. The key is to identify and reward these customers (with small gifts or future discounts) so their brand recommendations continue. Review sales records and website analytics to see who your regular buyers are and ask them to share your company information with others.
Make sure your business is represented on consumer review websites and profiles such as Google My Business, Facebook, and Yelp. Follow up with any questions or complaints, so your review ratings remain high. Then gather your best testimonials and use them in your marketing campaigns.
6. Treat Customers Like Prospects
Why are all the deals for new customers and not for established, loyal customers? If you haven’t heard that from your customers yet, you will. Or they’ll just walk away from your business and get a deal from your competitors.
Make sure you treat your customers like you’re wooing them for the first time. If your customers stuck with you through the pandemic, it behooves your business to let them know how you appreciate their devotion.
Send a thankful email, post a heartfelt video of thanks on your website, and reward them with news of a new product or service (with a customer loyalty discount). We’ve all been in the trenches together and it’s a great time to show your appreciation.
7. Add New Talent
There are some distinct advantages for businesses embracing the remote business model. No longer limited by geography, your business will crush it by being able to add valuable team members from anywhere in the country. And if you recruit from parts of the country with a lower cost of living than where you are, you may be able to save money as well.
This can benefit your current staff as well. You can retain employees moving out of town and not lose their valuable contributions.
However, to do this successfully, you need to understand and comply with the laws regarding hiring and having employees living and working in different states. LLCs and corporations are required to Foreign Qualify in any other state they conduct business in and all legal structures with employees working in other states, must also register for foreign qualification. For more on this see Virtual Companies and Nexus: What Small Businesses Need to Know.
In addition, employers with employees working in a different state must register with the State’s Department of Labor and the state’s tax board to pay the payroll taxes. Employers must follow the state’s regulations for minimum wage, labor laws, state disability insurance, and worker’s compensation. Failure to follow the payroll laws and registering for foreign qualification can result in significant penalties.
CorpNet is Here to Help!
Finding it hard to keep up with all laws and regulations in each state? That’s what CorpNet™ is here for! CorpNet is here to help save you time and money!