How can you earn more from your spa or saloon? How should you market it to existing and new customers?
Presumably you hope your company will grow, so how do you prepare for growth? What recommendations and experiences do you have when it comes to growing and scaling?
Short answer is yes. Long answer is that creating and refining these systems and processes is never ending as your business constantly grows and changes. Often you don't know what you need until you get there - usual life story.
In hindsight it is best to set these up as though you are lot bigger than you currently are rather than simply helping with solving your immediate requirements.
I was chatting with a friend yesterday about lead gen for her business and we both had some good ideas. So I thought it might be a great idea to share some ideas here for me it is networking both...
In what industry sectors do you see the greatest growth for the small and medium size businesses?
In extension to the statements above, it is very important that the business owner/strategist has a process to measure the success or failure that is accomplished.
A gut feeling is simply not good enough.
Most accounting software has basic methods to assist.
Quickbooks has a Class / Location
Xero has tracking categories
Myob has locations/jobs
Using a client's example:
A beautician has three clinics with 20 packages of services and skincare products
Using Quickbooks as an example she creates three store locations
Then the 20 packages are tracked using "class"
She also mapped all her product sales against the appropriate clinic locations.
After three months the beauty salon owner discovered some surprising insights:
Ipswich sold mostly massage/waxing packages and in skincare, acne packages were the most popular
Moorooka did not break even in services or products, it was hemorrhaging losses.
Chermside clients loved the higher end packages and skincare products.
With this information, the beautician closed the Moorooka clinic, as the lease was due to be renewed.
A new product line of aromatherapy essential oils and massage goods were introduced to Ipswich.
The money she saved in rent by closing Moorooka went into more modern laser machinery and expanded the store in Chermside.
Knowledge is power.
Research, customer feedback, advertising/marketing, website SEO, blogging all work together well as long as you have processes in place to document their success or failure.
Can your business run on autopilot whilst you're away or will it stop running if you're not there?
To me it all starts with an effective strategic plan. Then you have a guideline to follow, if it's in place and working well, you know the things you expect from yourself and others will be in alignment with that. By the time you aim to go away... you know that the strategic plan has proven itself and your people are simply going through exceptional motions to do what they do, if there's a hiccup then it will show up fast and it will be solved. Here's an example.
You are away and an issue comes up witha key supplier, they are contracted to supply an item vital to production, they know you are away, and one of their team let things slide to give them some slack so rush out product for a new client. Your team doesn't know that but they know what to do. They call and chat about the issue, working on your key value of respect, everyone know the organsiations stance on that and follows it, it includes all stakeholders. Before long someone higher up in the organisation spots your team has an issue and knows that they need to take positive action. Hiccup attended to, and pursued until a resolution is achieved. Tey may be able to suply more often but in smaller amounts so you can keep going.
Anyything that happens along the way will be readily dealt with due to the team knowing they need to find effective and elegant answers asap. They have an intimate appreciation of the way things are done and how they can be solved.
Best overall example I saw was a guy and his wife who ran a business, he wanted more time, so he weaned himself off the business a half day at a time, to the staff it looked like he was out chatting with clients. Nope he was having some very well earned ME time. His wife took different times off. After a while they both took off a half week here and there and built up.
Along teh way he and his wife figured out the issues they could deal with from afar and plugged up the holes for any other issues that would come up operationally.
Each business will have differeing needs for what they need to develop for smooth systems, policies and procedures.
Have a client that has a product that is being used by major metropolitan cities (B2B) and wants to break into the Asian markets. The competition is fairly stiff with everyday household brands you...
Ask A.S.P.A - Australia South Pacific ASEAN Chamber of Commerce for some advice.
Are drone services practical and useful for your small business? What are the roadblocks and issues that can arise?
From a delivery point of view, using drone for delivery will provide better security so that you don't have to be home to receive the delivery. Currently you need to be at home or office to sign for delivery of parcels because leaving parcels in front of the house or unit is not safe as it can get taken or stolen by other people but if drone is delivering the parcel, the drone operator can leave the parcel in a more secure location such as the backyard of the house, or in the balcony in a case of apartment. This would save time for everyone involved in the process of delivery. No driving to post office or depot for the receiver and no repeat delivery for the courier.
I would like to know how I can try and build my business up a bit more to bring in my work & more income. But I must realise that at the end of the day, I am only one person & I still I...
When you start a domestic cleaning business, it's likely you'll do much of the cleaning work yourself, with the opportunity to hire experienced and skilled cleaners and take a step-back later on. Having the state-fo art cleaning equipment is the best way for you to gather some new, repeat customers. You can always count on your friends aand relatives to suggest your cleaning to business to their colleagues at work, and, suddenly, you have a lot more jobs to do.
I've read that some businesses actually lose money due to heavy discounts and people don't come back. Have you had any positive experience? Or bad experience? Does it help a small new business?
As both Greg and Jef mentioned, you need a plan in place before you talk to soeone from these companies. They are "hard sell" sales people and will pressure you into a deal you're not happy with. "If you sign up today, I'll give you an extra 5% of the commission" type thing.
The only way to make this work for you is to offer a service that requires minimal manpower to provide. Offering a massage for $30 is not going to help - your staff will get angry as will your other clients when they can't get a spot because you are full. Now, an infra sauna on the other hand requires minimal manpower to prep/clean and would still give a reasonable profit margin (assuming you already had the asset).
Offer something that requires them to buy something or return. Using the massage example again, You voucher could be for $50 massage with a voucher redeemable for a second massage at $50. This way your margin is higher and you are enticing them for a second visit, where YOU get all the revenue, not the group buying site.
Be aware, depending on which company is used, the % revenue they take can be from 30% to 70%, giving you the raw end of the deal.
My last piece of advice is set a limit to the number of vouchers sold and stick to it. Do not let them talk you out of it. There is noting worse than waking up and finding you have sold 3,000 vouchers, in a service based business, knowing you can not fulfil them before the expiry date. Asking for the deal to be stopped early will fall on deaf ears.
I've seen many businesses close after trying to provide these deals, but I have seen a few run very smart campaigns. As long as you know what your usual cost per acquisition is and stick to that, you should be fine.
We have a lot of successful entrepreneurs in our community, while some members are just starting out. Can you share the biggest mistake you did when trying to grow your business? What did you do to...
The biggest mistake I made and many others have made as well, is growing too quick.
My favorite, oldest and most successful client, has grown his business continually for 12 years now and he's turning over something like $ 30 million now, but he grows slowly and steadily... he has 8 stores now, and in a few years he will have 12 or so, but he never opens a new store until the last one makes profit and unless the criteria he uses to assess a new opportunity are all perfectly alligned. He's walked away from many opportunities, simply because he wasn't confident enough they would work... many people have told him he should grow faster... but he won't and he makes more money than he knows what to do with and his staff love him and his customers love him and he loves his life....
Biggest mistake I made is to grow before I was ready