Many businesses begin with a brilliant product, sure to be a hit with consumers. If only they could
figure out who those customers are. I’ve seen numerous products, destined for greatness; fall flat because they never found a market. It’s much wiser to begin knowing exactly who your buyers are and cater your product to that specific group to the greatest extent possible. Better to be wildly popular with a small, dedicated following than to get a lukewarm reception from the masses. Upon review, if your products / services aren't quite hitting the mark for your ideal clients, consider changing them or even getting rid of some altogether. If you're not sure what impact your tinkering will have on business - ask your customers for feedback. They'll tell you what they think if you're brave enough to ask.
When I mention pricing, many assume that I mean discounting. In fact, I believe strongly in establishing price based on the value that a product delivers to the target customer and then sticking to it. I advise my clients to never (ok, rarely) discount. Discounting can easily end with the death of the product being discounted or even the entire business. Customers don’t see discounts as temporary; they see them as new (less profitable) prices. And that means doing more work just to get back to where you started. In my experience, it is often a better strategy to raise prices and the perceived negative impacts of a price increase usually don't eventuate.
A critical element to growing any business is having customers that are satisfied enough to recommend your business to others. The best way to ensure that’s happening is to offer them something exceedingly rare – proper customer service. The definition of “proper” differs
depending on who your clients are. Offering either more or less service than expected by your customers can be equally deadly. Getting it right means you can overcome even some of the most insidious mistakes that you can make as a business owner.
If you’ve got these three keys evident within your business, you’ll be well positioned to begin thinking about how to grow and improve your business further.