Is it possible to make an advisory business immune to the ups and downs of the economy? Maybe not completely, but there are strategies you can implement to make the economic cycle less of an issue for your revenue and profitability numbers.
1. Circle the Wagons
Throw a “fence” around your clients. Customer loyalty is increasingly rare these days, but that shouldn’t stop you trying to prevent your competitors and the economy from making them go elsewhere. How?
Regular and frequent communication of helpful interesting and informative information. Keep in touch. Make sure they receive your newsletter if you have one (and if you don’t, think about developing one). Find a way of increasing the number of “touches” each client receives each month/quarter.
2. Enhance your value
Increase the value of what you offer to your clients. Most people don’t buy just on price (only about 10% do actually), they buy on value, so focus not on reducing your prices but on building in additional value. Can you increase the level of service, frequency of reporting or add services you don’t currently offer which are low cost to you but perceived to be high value by them.
3. Get good at Marketing
Marketing your business should be the number one priority for any business owner looking to grow a sustainable business. Helping clients and prospects recognise the value of what you do is key to marketing success. Marketing has to be consistent and sustained rather than sporadic and occasional if it is to deliver a steady flow of new client enquiries.
4. Grow your profile
Get out there into your target market. Hang out where they hang out. Become the expert in your niche. The go to guy or girl. Get some free PR using articles and press releases. The media are always looking for good quality, interesting and relevant content. Look for opportunities to give talks and presentations to your niche.
Too many business owners accept that they are at the mercy of the economy or “circumstances” but in reality your success will be shaped by the decisions you make and the actions you take. What are your tips for making your business immune to the economic cycle?