Get Ready for the Rebound in 2019
Most people, asked a few weeks’ ago what their New Year’s resolution for 2019 would be, would probably have said ‘To be out of recession’. Well, we already have that with a resounding 2.2% recovery in the third quarter of 2018. Resolutions should therefore build on that positive sentiment.
So, skip the traditional New Year’s Resolutions of vowing to eat better and exercise regularly – you should be doing that as a matter of course – and apply the new-found energy in the South African economy to your franchise business instead.
A compilation of what small business blogs urge readers to do in the new year reveals the under-mentioned. You don’t have to do them all -pick and choose which ones speak to you the most, and develop a concrete plan for achieving those goals. Make a mental note to check in with yourself byEaster to see how your goals are coming along.
1. Focus on marketing & social media
- Write two blog posts a week on your business blog and share those posts on social media such as Facebook or email to reach out to your target audience.
- Experiment with a variety of ads in different places, such as Facebook, Google, your local community newspaper or local radio station such as Mix FM if you think they would reach your target audience. If you never try, you’ll never know!
2. Increase sales by a selected percentage
- Increase your prices, if the market will take it- it will make a big difference to your bottom line.
- Develop new variations of your product or add-on items customers can purchase, if allowed by your franchisor. It is much easier and cost-effective to get an existing customer to buy more than to find new customers.
- Find ways to cut costs if possible – it will increase your profits.
- Research your competitors to find out who is getting sales that are rightfully yours! Find out if there’s some bright idea they’re doing that’s giving them an edge over you.
3. Learn to delegate
As a franchisee, you can’t wear every hat in the business and still expand. Start by doing the following:
- Keep track of how you spend your business hours each day for a week, which take the most time and which tasks could be performed by someone else.
- Decide whether current employees could take on some of this burden, or if you need to hire someone new.
- Could some be outsourced economically?
4. Get close to your customers
- Create online surveys for your customers to complete, offering a possible prize for completing it.
- Make an effort as much as possible to speak to customers in person while running your business and create a rapport.
- Get familiar with Google Analytics and all the information it has to offer.
- If a customer requests a special item or feature from you, make note of who they are, so you can personally tell them when you’ve completed their request.
5. Increase productivity
There’s a cliché but it’s true – time is money. Make it your mantra and eke out every efficiency you can.
- Monitor how your employees spend their days, and witness the inefficiency. By survey, the average person only spends a third of their time productively.
- Streamline processes wherever possible to make everyone’s life easier.
- Be rigid about time-keeping and set times in which you – and everyone else – can check email, Facebook, or other social media.
6. Innovation and leaving what’s working
Some people say, ‘If it ain’t broke don’t fix it’, while others believe even if it ain’t broke you can still improve it.
- Take a hard look at every aspect of your franchise business for small improvements.
- Examine your workforce, and inculcate in them the philosophy – can they honestly say every day they’ve earned their wage?
- Be on top of technology – it’s changing day by day and there may be new systems that could revolutionise your life.
- Take a look at your business partners,distributors or suppliers. Are they working for you, or are you working for them? See where improvements can be made, ideally with minimal disruption to the business.
As this year draws to a close, we would like to extend a big thank you to all of you who read our blog, and we look forward to helping you achieve your goals in 2019!