Launching a startup can be a thrilling adventure. However, the startup sector is unpredictable, challenging, and riddled with failure. Investopedia reports that startups have a 90% failure rate.
Sales training companies say that one of the hardest things about achieving success in the startup world is realizing steady growth. Scaling a business takes effort, but with the right tools and strategies, it’s possible to make strides and get ahead. Here are some ways to kick your growth efforts into high gear.
Tap into niche markets
One of the first steps to launching a startup is to identify a target market. While finding your target market is important, also consider carving out a niche market. A niche market is a smaller subgroup of people within your target audience. For example, a gaming company with products specifically aimed at PC gamers.
Niche markets offer many benefits that can help spur faster growth. For one, there’s less competition and increased brand visibility. Also, your concentrated focus allows you to hone your expertise. In turn, you can leverage that expertise to stand out from the competition.
Utilize a customer management system
If you want to expedite business growth, use a customer relationship management (CRM) system. A CRM system can track all customer-related information, which helps you craft better relationships. Improving customer relationships means higher customer satisfaction. According to research by PWC, satisfied customers tend to buy more and be more loyal.
Customers who receive great experiences are also more likely to spread the word. Referrals are considered one of the fastest ways to grow a brand. For one, people are four times more likely to buy when referred by a friend, finds a report by Nielsen.
Build and optimize your sales funnel
How do your customers find you? Why do your customers stay or leave? The answers to these questions are crucial to growing your business. To accurately answer these questions, sales trainers say companies should use a sales funnel.
A sales funnel is a customer acquisition tool that illustrates the path prospects take from prospect to buyer. By analyzing your customer’s buying journey, you can learn where prospects drop out and never convert. Then, you can work to plug the holes to keep the customer moving through the sales funnel. In addition, knowing where interest in your product or service starts to peak helps you direct your resources where they’ll be most effective.
Keep an eye on the competition
No business operates in a vacuum. So, even if your brand is the current market leader, you want to keep an eye on the competition. Competition isn’t an obstacle to shy away from. In fact, knowing what brands in your sector are doing can empower you to uncover opportunities to turbocharge your growth.
For example, analyzing the competition can reveal strengths you can mimic or weaknesses you can capitalize on. Keeping an eye on other brands in your industry can also sharpen your focus and keep complacency from taking root.
Leverage strategic partnerships
A strategic partnership can offer many benefits that help create explosive startup growth. For example, you can gain access to established supply chains, new technologies, and financial resources. Starbucks and Barnes & Noble, Spotify and Uber, and Hewlett-Packard and Disney are examples of successful strategic partnerships.
The meshing of two companies can only work if there’s synergy and harmony. So, don’t rush to partner with anyone who appears attractive, or you could get crushed. Instead, sales companies that train startups advise taking time to find a company that complements yours. Also, look for a brand where the relationship is mutually beneficial.
Offer freemium services or free trials
To grow your business, you need to attract new customers. However, today’s consumers want to know what value they’re getting before making a purchase decision. Freemium services or free trials allow customers to take your offer for a spin and find out what value you have to give them.
Although freemium and free trial pricing models can be effective, they are not magic bullets. Luckily, there are ways to turn free or trial users into happy and paying long-term customers. For example, you can set the relationship off on the right foot by providing a mind-blowing onboarding experience. Another option is to help customers see how they can achieve a key outcome with the paid-for product.
Hire the absolute best people
After funding, one of the largest barriers to startup growth is hiring. Make every effort to bring on board the absolute best of the best. As is often said, it’s people that make a company successful. Poor quality hires can blow up key customer relationships and cause costly errors.
To maintain soaring growth, companies need to upskill and reskill their talent. Training to upskill and reskill your workforce ensures that your team’s skills are always polished and up to date. It also makes them more resilient and adaptable to changes. In addition, a growth-focused environment helps retain and attract top talent.