To succeed is to constantly change, at least in the business world. However relentlessly ambitious and endowed with means, expertise and experience, young entrepreneurs have got a lot to battle against. And it’s not only a question of money – challenged by a saturated market, fierce competition and, more than anything else, modern customer caprices, startups are today in greater risk of sinking fast than they ever were.
Despite the numerous success stories we’ve had the pleasure of reading over the past few years, half of all new businesses in the U.S. are still doomed to fail; luckily, there are always ways of emerging back to the surface, joining the other half, and eventually, climbing to the top. Here’s how to get your struggling startup back in the high seas.
- Change Course: Business Modelling
In the true spirit of captainship, most leaders of dying businesses choose to slowly sink with their men. In consequence, difficulties are followed by budget cuts, which inevitably lead to bankruptcy, while the root problem usually remains undetected. But instead of prolonging the inevitable, why not change the direction entirely?
For some companies, this will imply a revision of audience targeting strategies, while for others, some modification of the initial business model will be necessary. Ultimately, the change of direction suggests going back to the start and retracing the route one step at the time. Only by doing so, struggling startups can reveal where the peril lays and they can fix or replace what’s broken.
- Rewrite the Story: Branding
If, however, this strategy doesn’t expose any particular problem that needs to be solved with promptness and efficiency, the trouble may not be in the quality of the business offer or the approached audience – when everything’s in order with products and services, it’s usually the presentation that’s amiss.
In order to succeed, every company needs its own unique selling proposition, and what guarantees one is a compelling brand image. Being one of the most prolific revitalizing tactics, rebranding indicates only a slight change of course and focuses on storytelling instead. In essence, designing a new logo won’t help much, but making your brand’s customer experience more irresistible will firmly position your business in the marketplace.
- Reconsider the Destination: Audience Targeting
Then again, a reassessment of your business plan might indicate irregularities in your company’s audience targeting efforts. Usually, the lack of customer feedback signalizes that the audience you’re trying to approach is too wide, or even undefined.
In the business world, everything begins with a customer funnel – the purchasing habits of a crowd you’re trying to entice directly affect your strategic decisions, which is why it most definitely has to be specifically narrowed down. Think hard about who you’re trying to sell your products and services to and, if still struggling with getting your message across, consider making your offer less universal and ubiquitous, but more innovative and unique instead, and always in accordance with what those you’re addressing need, want and prefer.
- Revisit the Port: Marketing
Although exceptionally efficient, rebranding is a strategy that demands plenty of time, effort and money. Sometimes, however, everything you need to restart your public image is an additional social push, which brings us straight to your marketing plan.
First and foremost, a marketing strategy cannot be prosperous if not data-based, and you’ll probably need to recommence a thorough market research, including the analysis of both your potential customers and your company’s competition. Once the ground has been inspected and the scope established, you can make necessary changes in order to optimize your website and build a strong viral presence.
Digital marketing is the last word of the modern advertising efforts, so be sure to follow its rules of social engagement, relevant content sharing and interactive campaigning.
- Remain Fearless: Persistence & Improvement
Whatever you do in these unfortunate times, experts advise not to go safe. Once a demand starts to plummet, there’s really little for you to lose, which is why taking more risks can either pay off or change nothing at all.
Either way, this is an opportunity for you to get creative and seek out alternative ways, even if they imply less traditional approaches. When everything else fails, lowering your prices is a definite sign of extinguishing, and it won’t do you any good in the long run.
Instead of trimming the sales and riding the wave, try inventing the propeller – ultimately, changing a course by offering something different will add value to your company’s image and, if fortune is in your favour, help you weather the storm.