6 Strategies For Finishing 2020 Strong As An SME

6 Strategies For Finishing 2020 Strong As An SME

December 28, 2020 0

One pertinent question as we round off this year is “Does 2020 still have a silver lining, and how can we find it?” Amidst the confusion brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, most businesses had to go through a compulsory pause for several months. And for you as an entrepreneur, an extended period of forced recess. But how do you stage a comeback for your SME before the year runs out? In this article, we’ve highlighted six strategies for finishing 2020 strong as an SME, to guide your effort towards redeeming 2020 as a fruitful year.

Partners with complementary products and service providers

6 Strategies For Finishing 2020 Strong As An SME
An African SME owner

No product or service is used in isolation. There are steps that lead to a build-up of need for your products or service. These steps, mostly serviced by other providers, create an opportunity to anticipate potential customers’ needs before realising it. Leveraging this simple step will give you a head start over your competitors. It places you in a position before the rush for the customer’s attention begins. It also gives you an opportunity to take advantage of your partner’s brand equity to gain trust. 

As the year comes to an end, find other products where your services are complementary and explore a mutually beneficial relationship to drive your sales number up. In a follow-up article, I will elaborate on the dynamics of successful brand partnerships. 

Offer gifts

Most customers make their purchase from businesses they associate with a positive emotion. Little wonder social media is constantly buzzing with rewards and “give-aways”. This potent strategy doubles to drive publicity and engagement for your brand. These are two important currencies that you need to obtain a favourable position for year-end sales. 

Offering gifts to famous entities and influencers in relevant customer clusters is also a potent way to trigger an interest in your brand. This is because these influencers are aspirational figures for most of their followers, as such, they want to be associated with products and services. If your model is a B2B service, a holiday gift to key personnel in your customer organisations may just be the key to unlock the next referral or bulk order. The need to return a favour is instinctive.

Run year-end discount promotions and clearance sales

If there is one thing that the annual ‘Black Friday’ and ‘Cyber Monday’ sales have shown us, it is that everyone wants a deal. And with the right triggers of scarcity, discount and timing, many will go out of their way to make the purchase. This is what you want. A favourable approach at this time will be to focus on your sales volume over the profit margin.

This strategy is more potent when you offer your discounts on benchmarked quantities of purchase. It ensures that each conversion (customer) leads to multiple product purchases. Try this out and watch as customers clear out your remaining stock for the year. 

Use Jara or Combo sales as a strategy

Remember our first point above? There I advised you to explore partnership with other service providers as a means of growing sales. Here is a slight variation of that strategy. This involves the use of complementary products or services to create a ‘combo package’ and make your offerings more attractive. 

The success of this strategy hinges on the perceived value of your combo. Your ‘combo price’ is required to be significantly less than the combined price of both products when bought independently. It is an effective strategy to drive sales for underperforming products by latching them unto other products with high demands. Now you get to sell two products instead of one while winning your customer’s goodwill. 

Offer referral bonus 

Limiting business to the extent of your reach alone is not advisable. Research shows that people are four times more likely to buy when referred by someone familiar – Nielsen. And Wharton School of Business expantiates that the Lifetime Value (LTV) for new referral customers is 16% higher than non-referrals. These stats buttresses the need to leverage existing customers to source for new ones. 

This strategy also ties in with leveraging gifts as listed above by offering incentives for referrals made. Hence driving word of mouth, and more referrals. Research shows that 85% of customers are willingly making referrals for good service, but only about 29% do. Implement a well-structured referral rewards system and watch the number soar. This strategy can be used to ramp up sales before the year ends. 

Double down on Advertising

The fastest way to extend your reach as a business is through running ads. This serves to create publicity for your products and services. It also offers a springboard to boost the effectiveness of all the other strategies listed above. It helps to understand that the competition for customers’ attention will be quite fierce this season. But a good understanding of your customers’ needs, attractive offerings and tenacity in its delivery offers the perfect recipe for success.

Chima Ezeokoye
Chima Ezeokoye
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