There are several common mistakes that are made by small business managers in their day-to-day business practices that can affect their ability to grow and succeed.
Richard Laermer, the CEO of RLM pr (www.RLMpr.com), and coauthor of a new book called Punk Marketing, identified the following mistakes when he co-starred in Taking Care of Business, a reality show on The Learning Channel:
Stagnation - Many small business owners don't change with the times. In the business world today, a common business mantra is "evolve or die," so it's crucial to stay ahead of the competition.
Lack of Planning - There's no substitute for a good plan. It's critical for business owners to find their niche, craft a business plan, and then execute to the best of their abilities each day. Some business owners get distracted or enter into an industry they know nothing about and don't stay focused on what they do best. These folks are passionate about the business and "being their own boss," which is definitely important, but planning for the future is also important.
Turning Off Customers - Too many businesses focus on bringing in new customers and end up ignoring the ones that are already there. Typically, 20 percent of customers are responsible for 80 percent of business, and it's a lot easier to keep them happy than find new ones. That's something the small businesses often don’t seem to know about or remember when making business decisions.
Not Knowing the Customer - Knowing the competition is key, and knowing your customer is too. Many businesses don't follow trends in the media, don't pay attention to what the business down the street is doing and suddenly the company is obsolete. It’s critical for business owners to stay informed by reading everything they can about their industry and about everything else, while they’re at it, in order to continue to succeed.
Staying Quiet - Just because a company builds it doesn't mean that customers will come. A critical mistake for business owners and managers is not getting the word out about who they are and what they offer. It is important to leverage marketing, the Internet, the Yellow Pages, and PR for maximum exposure. Businesses can leverage PR by calling reporters and getting the stories they want to share about the company out into the public.
For more information about Richard Laermer, visit www.reelbiography.com/richard_laermer