Our Goal Is To Get 10 New Clients Each Month In 2015. What’s Yours?
Its Time to Set Targets & Goals For The New Year!
As another new business year begins companies are starting to Set Targets and Business Goals for 2015. By all accounts 2015 will be a very different business environment to 2014 with most businesses, but not all, setting their sights back on growth after many years of austerity and cost cutting. Economic growth is increasing rapidly and with it comes renewed opportunities. The effects of last year’s Budget Cuts will be kicking in from January and consumers will have a little extra disposable income. Research conducted by Avid Partners suggests that over 80% of small businesses are planning on Growing their Business Revenues in 2015. What are your plans for 2015?
1. Decide on what Level of Revenue Growth is Achievable in 2015!
This is a company specific answer based on the current circumstances of the business. To some services businesses 15%-20% is an ambitious target to strive for in a year where as if the business is a start-up with a decent level of supports then 100% may be the growth target for the year. Make the income goal ambitious but achievable. Targets that will be near impossible to meet will be demoralising when they are not achieved while targets that are too low wont motivate you to do better! Set an Ambitious Goal as well as a Targeted Goal for growth. That way once you have hit the standard target you are moving on to the ambitious one.
2. Decide On Your Specific Business Goals for 2015!
It may sound obvious but writing goals down makes them real and part of your thinking. You would be surprised by the amount of businesses that don’t take the time to map out their plans. Many have a couple of vague targets in mind that stay hidden from any formal business plans. Keep your goals Simple, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time Based. Stay away from clichés like “our goal is to be the number 1 business in our market by the end of the year” or “our goal is to treble our turnover in the next 12 months”. Blind statements like those show that little or no effort has been put into the though process for the business. Be better than that and your team will believe in you a lot more!
3. Is It Time to Re-Evaluate Your Target Base?
Every business develops year on year and with that comes a need to Change their Target Market. That doesn’t mean you are going to dump your existing customers but it may mean that you are focusing your efforts into gaining new clients under different criteria. It may be that you need more larger customers of scale going forward or more profitable customers in a different business area than what your current mainstream client base currently consists of. Don’t stick to targeting new customers that your business has outgrown as some of the most expensive words in the business language are “but that is the way we always did things“.
4. Evaluate How These Goals Are Going To Be Achieved?
This is where your marketing brain kicks in and outlines in detail the activities that will be undertaken to achieve your Growth Targets for 2015. Develop a brief but specific marketing plan or marketing calendar whichever you prefer. Highlight and briefly discuss the activities along with targets of customer acquisition, frequency, cost and allocation. For small companies on restricted budget stick to a small number of core strategies that have proven to work such as:
- Content Marketing, Direct Mail/Newsletters, Events, SEO Campaign, Social Media, Public Relations, Referral Programme, Strategic Alliances, Advertising (online & offline), Networking, Promotions and Direct Mail.
Use this opportunity at the start of the year to have a re-vamp of your company website. After all your website is your shop window so make sure it’s looking its best going into 2015!
5. Create Your Action Plan & Timelines
Document when tasks are going to be completed, who is going to do them and when. Make sure everybody in your organisation is playing to their strengths and not assigned tasks based on the fact that nobody else wants to do them! Have regular reviews to discuss progress. Also decide if you need some outside assistance with certain tasks as very few companies have expertise to do everything in-house (e.g. web developers, marketing experts, financial assistance). Be sensible when setting timelines for your activities.Over the Summer months many professionals take holidays so don’t schedule important promotional events around this time. Businesses start winding down in December so don’t leave any important communications until the end of the year.
6.Implementation – Get Stuck In Straight Away!
As soon as you set your goals and objectives start work straight away and don’t leave it a week or a month to begin the growth push. If you do there is nothing more certain than momentum being lost and the good will of the New Year will have passed your business by. Keep in mind that you have to share your goals and allocate responsibilities to your team as nobody can achieve ambitious goals on their own in a team business. Make sure you manage your time effectively in 2015 and stay focused on the issues that are really important. Try to create the best working environment in your organisation and despite the setbacks you will inevitably encounter try to stay positive. Finally don’t be afraid to celebrate your successes along the way. Success breeds success and when you achieve something worth shouting about do so .
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