Scaling as a Long-Term Growth Strategy
Every big business started somewhere small, yet it takes sustained, intentional planning and execution to create a global name. While launching a small business is an accomplishment, implementing ongoing strategies for long term growth are the best way to achieve a sustained trajectory for success throughout the business life cycle. A critical component of your long-term growth strategy is putting the tools in place that makes it easy to scale your business.
What It Means to Scale a BusinessScaling your business means setting it up for success by providing the necessary resources and infrastructure to grow freely. This could mean anything from better delegation of work, to new tools and software that increases efficiency. Teams with a growth mindset can identify inefficiencies and gaps in their process that could hamper growth if new opportunities present themselves. Businesses that have strong long-term growth strategies are ready to bring in new customers and additional revenue. This doesn’t happen overnight, however, and careful planning and dedicated effort across your entire organization is required for it to work.
Why Scaling Your Business Is Important
A business that scales effectively can handle more demand and bring in more revenue with little to no increase in costs, resources, and ultimately effort. With proper preparation, a scalable business can capture additional market share, reach a larger customer base, and capitalize on new opportunities without skipping a beat or sacrificing productivity and profitability. On the other hand, an unprepared business can grow too quickly and cause unrepairable damage to their bottom line, reputation, and the loyalty of their customers.
How to Scale Your Business
Mergers & Acquisitions (M&As)
Pursuing a merger or acquisition means adding a new geographic territory, product or service line to your business by buying or combining with an existing business. M&As can bring new processes into your organization that are more efficient, or acquire additional talent that could revolutionize your culture and ability to innovate. This can be one of the quickest ways to increase enterprise value, as long as it makes strategic sense to do so. However, there are key considerations that need to be thoroughly examined, and a great deal of preparation within your current business in order to integrate successfully. Let’s just say that a successful acquisition should never be just about “the numbers” or gut feeling. With the failure rate so high among M&A Integrations (the experts tell us upwards of 70%) it makes sense that your due diligence practices are thorough and your reasons for buying are sound. Done right, a strategic acquisition can fast track top and bottom-line expansion.
This is the most common growth strategy of privately held businesses. When the potential for selling more of your products and services to more customers or clients is your best avenue for growth, honing and growing your sales force is the best strategy to pursue. Some strategies can also include temporarily lowering your price point on a certain sector of products or services to capture additional sales of regularly-priced items. This is something that grocery stores do all the time. If you have capacity to take on additional sales without adding to your overhead, you’d call that a vertical growth strategy. Setting your sales team up for success with a purposeful marketing plan and tactics that are proven to drive good leads is essential. If your sales team isn’t supported by marketing in this way, it will be almost impossible to pursue this type of enterprise growth.
You could also pursue additional market penetration by cross-selling additional products and services to your existing customers. If they’re already buying what you have to sell from your competitors, yet they’re buying some from you, why not expand that relationship? It’s usually your lowest-hanging fruit, because the cost of expanding an existing relationship is generally faster and more cost-effective than finding brand new customers.
Do you have a product or service that could be sold through a reseller like Amazon or Etsy? If that’s not for you, I get it, but thinking along these lines can be a low barrier to entry for growing your business. Say, for instance, you have digital assets that other companies could benefit from using themselves, especially if creating something similar would take resources away from their other initiatives.
Another angle: perhaps you’ve always been a Business-to-Consumer producer, but what about becoming a Business-to-Business producer? The use of strategic, collaborative channels where we sell or distribute our goods and services can be an added revenue stream that grows your profitability without adding a great deal of infrastructure expense.
Start Scaling Your Business With KeyeStrategies
These three growth strategies are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to scaling your business. There is a wide array of smaller and larger strategies that could be the right fit for your business while building a one, five, or ten-year plan. Ultimately, scaling your business is about finding efficiencies that sets you up for success when growth opportunities appear.
Scaling doesn’t happen overnight, however. A solid plan is the most important piece of the puzzle for growing your business while maintaining a strong customer experience and not increasing expenses. If the above strategies feel unrealistic for your business, it doesn’t mean they are impossible for your business to achieve. Instead, it could mean that your blueprint for business success is incomplete or missing. At KeyeStrategies, we’ve helped businesses of all sizes build an achievable and actionable plan for long-term growth. Reach out to KeyeStrategies and start building your value acceleration plan. Julie Keyes and the KeyeStrategies team will implement our proven three-phase process that has brought success to businesses looking to scale and break into new markets. Getting started is as simple as a brief free call with Julie about your business and future goals.