How Can a Business Survive a Recession?

There is a no magic wand to wave and for all this just to go away. The situation is clear, and the need for action is obvious.Recession

Recession

If a business is to survive a recession, there are crucial elements and factors they must consider. Ask yourself these questions and take a moment to reflect on your answers – believe me, they will open your eyes:

Where is the Cash?

Cash flow is the lifeblood of your business. Money must continue inflowing and outflowing for optimum business health, with the apparent goal being that you bring in more income than you must spend on expenses.  But do you know where your primary income will come from?

Recession-proof your business by implementing strategies to keep the cash flow moving, from increasing sales or billable services to trimming unnecessary expenses.

What is an unnecessary spend?

From frequent business travel to marketing campaigns that do not give the ROI you need; you may find that cutting back on many areas can help your business save money. Consider more than just Furlough and Staff layoffs, outline your spend that will ever be affected by the current situation – do we need to travel? Do we need to book accommodation? Are we investing in uniforms when no one is meeting each other?

It’s imperative to check your outgoings and finally realise that something that costs a great deal but delivers truly little.

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What is your competition doing?

You must continue to expand your customer/client base if your small business is going to prosper in tough times. This means drawing customers from your competition. But what is your competition doing that you can do better?

If your business ever needed a SWOT analysis, it is right now. Your competition has already spoken to me so is 27 steps ahead of you. How are you going to react and fend off the threats? Even better, what are you going to do differently to win the customers of your rivals?

What do your customers say?

Before you go all out guns blazing to win new business, spare a thought for your current customers. You cannot afford to ignore the potential profits of shifting your sales focus to include established customers if you want to recession-proof your business.

The key here is excellent customer service. Ensure that your customers or clients love what you do or sell and keep them happy. Yes, that means the customer is always right. Identify their needs, then meet them. You want to retain their business all costs.

What is your Marketing Message?

Many businesses make the terrible mistake of cutting their marketing budget or downgrading their promotional message in lean times or even eliminating it, but this is precisely when your business needs marketing the most.

Consumers are restless. They are always looking to make changes in their buying decisions. Help them find your products and services and to choose them rather than others by getting your name out there. Do not quit marketing just yet, step up your marketing efforts but do it responsibly.

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How is your relationship with your bank?

If it is like 32% of the UK population, then it is horrendous. Owners of small and mid-size businesses understand that selecting the right banking institution is a crucial component to their business’s financial health, and these decisions made previously will truly be felt in the current climate.

Now is the time to talk. Communication with your executive board is crucial, but so is with your lender’s beneficiaries and of course, your bank. It’s good to talk.

Can you simply hold on and hope?

Many businesses believe in the old age method of merely ‘waiting it out’. In some small cases, this can be effective if your product or service is in demand and you are fully optimised for a remote working market with a full set of ready to go digital platforms and skills.

However, for many, this is not the case. Time will be a telling factor, but time will also be a slow death if your strategy is to head down to the pub, pour a cold pint, and wait for this to all blow over.

What is your disaster recovery strategy now?

For years businesses have invested in disaster recovery strategies that helped business continuity. But these were always seen as worst-case scenarios in terms of theft, security breaches, destruction, acts of God and war. No one had a solution to covering a worldwide pandemic.

But why can’t your disaster recovery strategy work now? Working from home is the new normal (all Twitter employees are full-time WFH), video conferencing is the new meeting set up (If only we bought shares in Zoom) and employees are happier if you are not breathing over their shoulder every 17 seconds.  Your business set up will survive.

5 Main Steps for branding a business successfully

The process of branding a business either it’s a startup “new business”, small or midsize existing business is critical for each business main goal to survive within the highly increasing competition and to gain the desired market share of loyal customers.

branding

Branding a new business process is a tougher but highly rewarding challenge as when you build the desired perception “brand positioning” about your business in consumers’ minds, your targeted customer will consider your products or services as the best available choice for their needs and desires.

Consumers are always willing to pay more for branded products mainly because brands fulfill their promises with high-quality products that suit the consumer’s desired experience which makes the decision of branding a business worth the devoted investment as you’ll gain more financial returns with establishing a reputable trustworthy brand.

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Why you should invest in business branding solutions?

Transforming your business from a local regular choice to a well-known trusted brand will lead to substantial growth for your business as you’ll gain the preapproval of targeted consumers when they experience specific needs and your products will the first choice on top of their mind based on gained positive impression and previous satisfying experiences.

Branding a business successfully through investing in cost-effective business branding solutions is essential for the success of marketing and advertising campaigns as you guarantee reaching audiences with an existing preference for what your business is offering.

Building a positive brand positioning through professional appealing visual brand identity elements, customized marketing and advertising campaigns, value-added content marketing solutions, positive consumer experience with your business products and customer service channels will drive exceptional difference in the achieved sales volume and return on investment “ROI”.

Main Steps of Branding a Business Successfully

In a world of increasing competition and many alternatives available, the price of the needed products or services is not the only factor to choose suitable products or services.

The consumer experience with anything related to the brand including purchased products, customer service & communication channels, presence on digital platforms contribute to your brand positioning in consumer minds.

Developing a tailored branding strategy

The process of building a brand with an existing market share or branding a new business is not limited to creating a professional logo, corporate printed materials and launching advertising campaigns through digital or offline channels but extends to establishing a consistently positive brand image.

Developing a tailored branding strategy is the first step to branding a business successfully and to maintain the desired brand perception in consumers’ minds.

Your business branding strategy should define main business branding aspects which are:

  • The purpose of your brand and the goals of business branding
  • The targeted audiences characteristics, interests and behavior “buyer persona”
  • Your business competitive advantages & how you’ll improve customers’ lives
  • The desire brand positioning “ex: desired lifestyle / problem-solving solutions / high-quality affordable products”

    Creating the brand identity

    Your brand identity is what makes anything related to your business recognizable by current and potential customers which also creates a connection between your brand and consumers through consistent appealing brand identity.

    The chosen brand identity can demonstrate your brand personality, nature and professionality level through many elements including:

    • Suitable consistent brand colors, fonts & typography
    • Professional elegant logo & stationary designs  
    • Creative distinguished Products’ Packaging
    • Suitable slogans & taglines to desired brand positioning
    • Stores and branches interior and exterior designs
    • Printed ads and outdoor advertising billboards
    • Social media design templates
    • Business website design

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    • Highlighting your business competitive advantages

      Branding a business is mainly about highlighting your business competitive advantages to stand out from the competition and to encourage targeted customers to choose your products or services over many alternatives available.

      Your brand positioning strategy should focus on demonstrating the distinguished value-added form dealing with your business products through all communicating options and channels including:

      • Commercial TV or Radio advertising campaigns
      • Official website & business mobile app
      • Digital advertising campaigns on search engines & social media channels
      • Email marketing campaigns & newsletters
      • Organic content marketing campaigns on social media platforms
      • Customer service channels and activities

        Improving the customer experience

        After creating the brand identity and demonstrating your brand competitive advantages, the next step is to fulfill your brand promises by improving the experiences of interacting with anything related to your business.

        Branding a business successfully will require providing the best user “consumer” experience through anything related to your business including:

        • The quality of available products compared to its prices
        • The value gained for subscription in your services
        • The navigation experience in your business website or mobile app
        • The professionalism level in customer service & communication channels
        • The guidance provided through blog posts, how-to educational or live Q&A videos and other content marketing solutions

        • Maintaining positive brand positioning

          Business branding is important but what’s more important is consistency in business branding to maintain the desired positive brand positioning throughout your business life-time.

          Consistency doesn’t mean sticking to the same branding solutions but it’s about following your brand guidelines while providing the best possible consumer experience.