If you’re a small business owner, you already know how hard it is to keep track of every aspect of your business by yourself. Sales and marketing are no different. While you certainly know your product better than anyone, it merely isn’t possible to be everywhere. Because of this, it makes sense to set goals for yourself and to insert the right people into your organization to help you achieve them. Here, we will take a look at a few ways you can do just that so that you can keep your business on track through 2020 and beyond.
Focus on the Web
The internet is a powerful tool for your business. Not only does it allow you to reach well beyond your hometown, but it’s also a portal by which you can communicate with your customer base, showcase the best of what you have to offer, and manage the relationships you forge over time.
A Site to Behold
Your website is one of the most crucial aspects of your business. You can think of it as a welcome mat — one the entire world can see. A great website is more than just pictures, videos, and content. On the backend, it requires a tech-savvy developer to ensure that it is user-friendly. If you are not up to speed on the latest in web programming, look for a backend developer who can keep your website going and provide an interface that will appeal to your customers. They should also understand your goals, and ensure you have a way to make minor updates without having to contact them each time you change a price or product description. You can expect to pay about $55 per hour up to $135 per hour, depending on the experience and dedication you expect.
Fortunately, finding a qualified freelancer is as easy as using online job boards such as Upwork.
Social Media Mavens
Social media is another powerful device by which you can market your business. However, this is also an area that requires experience and dedication. According to MediaBistro, a social media manager, which is another professional you might consider, must know the ins and outs of the most popular media platforms. This person should have a creative streak but also know how to stay on top of new technology while engaging with humor and quick wit with your target audience, which varies from platform to platform.
Your social media manager will also be fully literate in social media management software and services.
Learn to Upsell
Great, you’ve hooked a customer’s interests, and now they are ready to invest in your products. However, that’s not enough. To be truly successful, you have to master the art of upselling and its equally effective brother, cross-selling.
It’s one thing to have an excellent website and social media presence, but to keep your customers attention, you also have to have great graphics. That also comes into play when it’s time to sell items, particularly when they were not the ones your customers came in search of. An excellent graphic designer can create a great first impression and communicate your message efficiently and effectively. However, before you commit to a graphic designer, ask to see their portfolio. Styles vary, and even equally talented graphic designers may have very different ideas about how to portray your business.
At some point, as your business continues to grow, it will make sense to hire a salesperson to take things to the next level. Propeller CRM notes that you’ll know when the time is right, and a few signs of this include knowing how to scale your time and having in place a defined sales process. In many cases, your new sales representative will expect a small salary to start but will transition to a commission-based income structure as they prove themselves useful. Keep in mind that there are benefits to having a fixed salary, such as maintaining a steady budget. Commission pay might be a better choice if you’re looking for someone highly-skilled, knowledgeable, and aggressive, and your business is ready to keep up with demand.
Boost Customer Satisfaction
Make no mistake that your customer service strategies fall comfortably into the scope of sales and marketing. If your customers are not happy with the service they receive, none of your efforts will matter in the end.
Your (Virtual) Right Hand
If you’re looking to improve customer satisfaction and retention, hiring a virtual assistant is a smart move. This is a person who can help you juggle all that you have going on so that you can better focus on those aspects of your business that need your attention the most. A virtual assistant can lend a sense of professionalism to your enterprise, even if you are a business of one. They can keep you on track and remind you of phone calls and meetings that you may otherwise miss. Perhaps most importantly, they can provide a quick response to queries in online chats, text, telephone calls, and other forms of communication.
A Relationship Guru
A virtual assistant will certainly keep things moving, but the bigger you get, the more focused you must be on your customers. For this reason, it might also make sense to hire a customer service manager, which oversees your customer service operations and maintains records of interactions between your patrons and employees. Part of keeping your customers happy is ensuring that your entire staff, sales representatives included, are engaged and well-versed in best customer service practices. Your customer service manager will take the reins and ensure that this is the case. They’ll also employ corrective actions on the (hopefully) rare occasion when your customers are forced to walk away unsatisfied.
Chances are that you are skilled enough to handle many, if not all, of the tasks listed in this article. However, like cake icing, it’s almost always best not to spread yourself too thin. Running a business is a balancing act, and sometimes you need to insert the right people to act as a counterweight so you can stay on course.