Published By Janet Gershen-Siegel at February 7th, 2020
Do you want to eliminate business failure? Of course, you do! Don’t we all?
Our researchers at Credit Suite found these ten great business tips for you! Be fierce and score in business with the best tips around the web. You can use them today and see fast results. It’s the Holy Grail to eliminate business failure.
Start powering up your business and celebrating as your business starts to fulfill its promise.
And these brilliant business tips are all here for free! So, settle in and scoop up these tantalizing goodies before your competition does!
Our first tip is all about invoicing best practices. Kabbage says creating invoices means you need to be consistent and organized. This means itemizing and it means basics like dates and numbers and project names.
And don’t send an invoice late! You are only harming your own cash flow when you do so. Our favorite tip concerned following up.
There’s a reason why companies send friendly payment reminders just before a bill is due. They want to be at the top of your mind. And, of course, they want to be paid. You should do the same. After all, you want the same thing.
Following up also allows you to have a touch point to the customer. Maybe they need more time to pay. Or maybe they’re ready for an upsell. Don’t just sit in the dark, hoping they’ll pay you eventually.
And, you can always try accounts receivable financing if you need it.
The next tip is about creating a video sales letter. Foundr notes you can’t just brain dump the first 30 seconds of whatever you think of. Rather, you need to be intentional when it comes to a video sales letter. Because a bad video or script is a lot harder for prospects to forget.
We highly recommend reading the entire article. So, we’ll just concentrate on one tip here.
You are not writing Shakespeare here. It’s not meant to be dramatic. Rather, your script exists so you don’t forget any detail. And it also exists so you can have a good, well-crafted call to action in your video. The article recommends cribbing from sales copy, and we agree!
After all, your sales copy was written by your marketing people. And it must be working – so repeat the process. It’s a lot better than reinventing the wheel.
Our following tip concerns measuring and achieving business growth. Fundera lays it all out for us. There are a half a dozen growth strategies you can try. And it doesn’t matter what kind of a business you’re in.
The strategies are:
Consider each of these in turn. They are all ways to get more cash or lose less money. It makes sense to look at them all systematically. We recommend you check out the article in its entirety. So, we’ll showcase one of these strategies.
It can sometimes feel a bit counterintuitive, eh? But recognize that you may be unnecessarily attached to, say, the first type of widget you ever sold.
With your sales figures in hand, take a good, long look at your underperforming products and services. But also consider the costs of creating them. If you make $5 from a $1,000 product, but it takes you only a minute to get that product out on the shelf, then it costs $300 to make that product every hour. If you only make two of these products per quarter, and they both sell, they might be worth it. But also consider the costs of shelf space. Plus, there can be a cost of ‘shelf space’ even if your business is solely online. Maintaining one more selling or landing page isn’t free.
The corollary is also true. If your $1,000 product costs $900 to make, and you make $950 on the product, then it might also be a candidate for weeding.
They’re products or services, not a marriage. You can change them up if they stop working out for you.
For our next tip, we looked at Instagram marketing (very, very hot these days). Business Knowhow says that Instagram has over a billion active users each month. Yes, that’s billion, with a ‘B’.
Over a third of all US adults use it. So, shouldn’t your business be there, if it isn’t already?
Now, the tips are mainly the kinds which we see for social media of any flavor. That is, be sure to have a business profile, engage with your readers, and track the right metrics. So, we’d like to zero in on the one tip which is more specifically Instagram-centric.
Stories are a kind of fast-moving, almost disposable content. They don’t last for very long. Still, they get decent engagement – a good 20% get a direct response from users.
The best tip we can tell you is not just to use Instagram stories. It’s also to not take your business quite so seriously when you’re creating them. Hence while, yes, you want them to be brand-correct and accurate, maybe take the sales talk down a notch. How?
Let’s say you’ve got a long-haul trucking company. Your story might be about your favorite stop in Texas. “Hey, Instagram, I’m in San Antonio! Love this town – be sure to check out the Alamo. And if you need anything delivered here, I’m your guy.”
And then, whoosh, it’s gone.
Short, sweet, and to the point.
This tip is so cool, and it works! Heinz Marketing tells us all about the handshake between marketing and sales. Their article outlines seven best practices. We’ll home in on just one of those here.
Have you ever worked at a company where there was perhaps a little too much competition between departments? At times, these departments can even turn hostile toward each other. After all, even unintentionally, there’s competition for resources.
Still, you’re all supposed to be on the same page.
When the sales department assumes marketing is hiding all the good prospects, there’s a problem. And when marketing assumes sales isn’t following their directions deliberately, then there’s also a problem.
What to do?
Assume the best of intentions. The first time, every time. This can also get you to contact the other department if everything isn’t running smoothly. Maybe there was a breakdown in communications? These things happen.
Get the problem fixed before it gets bigger. And the start is to assume good intentions and work from there.
Grab this tip while it’s hot!
Look at a new way to eliminate business failure right here.
Success Harbor says business failures tend to come down to five issues:
Today, we’ll focus on all of these, but from my own perspective. See, I’m a writer. Have I mentioned that before? Well, I am. Published and everything.
I hang around with other independent writers all the time. I see people who want to get rich, or who think this will be the perfect job due to their anxiety. Or they feel they will become famous. Or they will be treated well by reviewers and commenters.
Folks overspend and underdeliver. Or they have little to nothing to put into their projects, and it shows. Another issue is when they do very little marketing, or don’t do it well. Or they’re just plain vague about not only what their work is about, but how they’re planning on taking it to the next level.
They also have no idea that they’re not just writing. They’re also starting a small business, like it or not.
In short, they suffer from every single issue in the article.
Sometimes, dear readers, there just plain aren’t enough facepalms.
Manage your expectations. Even overnight successes had to start somewhere. And they’re often nowhere near as overnight as you might have been led to believe.
Also, as they say, don’t quit your day job. A surprisingly small number of books have to be sold for you to have a New York Times bestselling novel. No, seriously. So, that means, while being a bestseller isn’t stratospheric, it also doesn’t make the writer a mint.
And, treat a business like, well, a business. This means budgets and planning. And if you’re up for neither, then you hire someone who is.
Oh, and speaking of locations…
Check out this tip, all about motivating employees during stressful times. Talk about eliminating business failure right there! Entrepreneur notes that it’s impossible to get rid of all stress. Much the same as it’s impossible to truly eliminate business failure, of course. The basic idea is to lower both, yes?
Beyond being an empathetic manager and encouraging clear communication, we wanted to highlight one rather specific tip.
Does that feel counterintuitive?
Do you remember when you were a worker bee? You probably wanted your vacation time to come sooner. And you probably hoped it was longer than it truly was. Furthermore, you likely dreaded coming back to backlog.
Your employees have those exact same feelings and desires.
If you can’t afford to offer more than 2 weeks of vacation per year, then so be it. You can still make that a better time for your employees. You can be cheerful and encouraging when they want to take time off. And you can assign someone to help alleviate the backlog so they don’t come back to a huge tsunami of work and get stressed out all over again.
Besides, cross training is good for teams.
It’s not your imagination: this tip can help you build a high performance team. Logic 2020 tells us this isn’t exactly the same as the people you hire for a work group. A work group solves basic, quantifiable problems. Such as, you need to expand into New Mexico. Or maybe you need to raise production by 20% this year.
A high performance team, on the other hand, is for abstract, creative problems. They might still be tackling a problem like raising production. But instead, they would be approaching it from an angle like adding AI or buying new software. In contrast, the work group would be looking at hiring more workers or coaxing faster delivery times from suppliers.
Here’s our fave tip of the bunch.
This is a favorite tip because it has a personal angle to your intrepid blog writer.
Because I have been hired to work on problems which were existing for the first time. Case in point: one job was to create a legal vocabulary for a voice recognition product. The team already had medical vocabularies. But they had no idea how to start with legal.
Rather than being good at voice recognition, the truth is, I had never worked on it before. But I knew legal and I knew (still do!) writing. This meant thinking about use cases which I had personally experienced. Those included dictation with spelling and creating legal citations. A lawyer or police officer would have to add new names and street names just about every single day. Contrast this with a doctor who could add the names of diseases and treatments maybe once and then be done.
It’s this kind of lateral, off the wall thinking that you want in your high performance team. It’s one way to eliminate business failure.
Our second to last tip can give you a new perspective on your onboarding process. Manta reveals all about what to do with that awesome, high performance team once you’ve hired them.
One way to help eliminate business failure is to treat your employees right. And you need to do so from the very start. This goes beyond education and training and providing regular feedback. Although we’re not knocking those.
Being in a remote work location, we wanted to focus on one aspect of the article.
When I’m in Boston, you’re in Boise, and our coworker is in Biloxi, we aren’t going to go out for drinks after work. Maybe ever.
So, what can we do?
Work toward connections. Part of this is programmatic. That is, you spend time on virtual meetings, and maybe more of those than you would have if you were in the same office. Make it a regular habit to check in and check in regularly.
Another thing you can do is to keep teams from being isolated from each other. We at Credit Suite do this via collaboration using a tool called Slack. You may find other ways to do so.
And here’s a tip, straight from me to you: organize some sort of an employee gathering, once a year. You probably can’t invite everyone, but at least get the team leaders in. Give them the opportunity to get in some face time. Add in some teamwork – and that can be bowling or a trivia competition or whatever. It doesn’t all have to be about work, 24/7.
Your employees don’t have to be close pals and love each other. But they should be at least collegial to each other.
We saved the best for last. One way to eliminate business failure is, of course, to save money. Here’s how.
For our favorite remarkable tip, we focused on trimming startup operating expenses. Young Upstarts says there are a few areas where you can cut expenses which you may not have thought of.
One is to negotiate with your suppliers. We agree with this and also see it as a prelude to getting vendor credit with them. Perhaps you could get a trade reference if your supplier likes your business that much (and you have a good payment record with them).
Another option is outsourcing. Could you work with freelancers, or even people overseas? The beauty of this approach is, you can try people out with less risk than a full-blown hiring process. Like them? Then hire them full-time when you can. Don’t like them? Then cut your ties.
So, which one of our brilliant business tips was your favorite? And which one will you be implementing now?