Small Business Trends - 5 Easy Preparations to Start the New Year Strong


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The New Year is the ideal opportunity to review your Small Business, and to plan and readjust tactics for the year ahead. Start the new year strong by taking the following preparations for your business. 

1. Take a look at your competitors

The best way to highlight opportunities and weaknesses in your own business, is by looking at what your competitors are doing. Conduct a competitive analysis audit at the beginning of the year which will help you to determine your strengths, weaknesses and possible opportunities. Carry out a thorough analysis of competitors’ prices, brand strategy, social media presence, website and any other aspect of their business that you feel is relevant. Becoming familiar with your competition will hugely benefit your own business and team in coming up with ways for you to stand out from your competitors. Check out this article on how to write a competitive analysis for your small business.

2. Redefine business goals and vision

This should be something that every business does annually. The goals and vision of a business can sometimes become forgotten when people are bogged down with work and deadlines, and so it is important to pull back and take a good look at the entire business as a whole. Re-evaluate your goals and vision. What do you stand for as a business? What direction is your business headed in?  And what targets do you need to meet in order to get there?

3. Get rid of any obstacles

When you have finished taking the time to study your competitors and reviewed the goals of the business, you may begin to notice that some areas need to change or improve. There will be times in all businesses when certain aspects of the business are no longer working, or no longer helping the business to grow. These stumbling blocks could be anything from a product that isn’t selling, to a staff member who may not be pulling their weight. In order for your business to grow and perform to its highest standard, these tough decisions need to be made. At the end of the day, anything that does not contribute to the profit and growth of the business should be gotten rid of.

4. Invest in paid social media growth

Whether we like it or not, 2018 is the year where organic (unpaid) social media reach is going to drop dramatically. There’s simply no avoiding it. Organic reach on Facebook for businesses has been dropping consistently for a number of years, but it is predicted that 2018 will see an almost complete drop in organic engagement. In order for businesses to maintain their reach and engagement online, they must invest in more paid growth on their social channels. Check out this post for more information on how to implement paid social media campaigns in your content marketing strategy.

5. Review Cyber security

It’s very dangerous to assume that cyber attacks only happen to larger business. In fact, 58 percent of small business owners have experienced a cyber attack, and so it is crucial that a full security sweep is done at the beginning of this year to ensure that your business remains safe. It could prove to be a very costly mistake to neglect your cyber security in 2018.

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