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The Top 10 Biggest Mistakes made by Business Owners

Following an inspirational 2 days training with NABO, I would like to share with you this month, the top 10 biggest mistakes in business that they identified from their work with small business owners, plus some of my tips on how to avoid them.

  1. Surprisingly, most business owners only have one way of generating new customers. However, successful business owners have at least 10 ways of bringing new customers on board. How many ways do you have in your business? Do you ask your customers for referrals and recommendations? Do you thank them when they do recommend you? Have you tried direct mail lately? Look at new and easy ways for potential customers to find you.

  2. Imagine you arrive at your favourite local restaurant for dinner one evening and you and your guests are only offered the main course. You are told that there are no starters available, no desserts and no drinks would be served with the meal. Would you stay and have dinner? Is your business suffering from only offering a main course? Many business owners need to extend the range of products and services they offer. Do your current customers spend with you and then come back for other products you have available?

  3. Using your imagination again, you have met the man or woman of your dreams and on the first date you decide to drop on one knee and propose. How likely is it that this person is going to say 'yes' to your proposal? Does your business make the mistake of 'proposing' on the first date? It is so important to find ways of building relationships with your customers. People buy from people and businesses they know, trust and have a rapport with.

  4. Do you test your prices? And by that I mean should you be increasing them? Have your ever shopped in a supermarket and turned your nose up at a value tin of baked beans, believing if it is that cheap, the tin cannot be a quality product. Many business owners are not putting a high enough value on their products and services?

  5. Another mistake made is the lack of emphasis put on the average lifetime value of customers. There is no sense in spending £500 on marketing, to get a new customer through the door, which makes a one off purchase of £300. It would, however, be wise to invest this money on a client with a lifetime value of £10,000. Do you know what your average customer will spend with you over the lifetime that they will stay with you? Here at Dolphin Business Strategies we can help you identify what each of your customers is worth to you and show you how to increase that.

  6. Do you use email marketing? Many business owners are either not using it or not using it particularly well. This is an area that we have also fallen down on in the past. We have expected outcomes and results to just happen. There are so many ways in which new customers can find your business. Make it as easy as possible for your customers to find you.

  7. One of the biggest mistakes made is that business owners do not upsell or cross sell their products and services. McDonalds are brilliant at this. Who hasn't been into McDonalds and been asked, 'would you like fries with that?' This simple, six worded sentence has put billions on their bottom line. What other products and services do your customers need, that you can deliver but are not offering?

  8. Are your products and services positioned correctly in the market place? If you have a high value offering that you are selling too cheap or a poor value offering you are selling too high, it will not work. You need to ensure your services or products match your position in the market place.

  9. Another mistake is that business owners do not put enough value on PR. Journalists love a good story. A well written piece with photos will get you noticed. We work with local PR specialists to help get our clients noticed.

  10. The final mistake which many of the business owners I know make, is the old problem of trying to do it all yourself! When I heard this, it was a timely reminder of how easy it is to block your business growth by not trusting anyone else to help you. I now have a part time PA and cannot remember how I managed without her. As my business grows, her involvement will become more and more important. This is a good time to remember the 80/20 rule. If someone can do something to 80% of your standard, which frees you to do more of what you get paid for, this is a good investment. In truth, a good PA will normally find a better way to do things that you would not necessarily have thought of yourself.

If you see yourself in any of these mistakes, then you are joining the rest of us business owners as we all make them.

The key is identifying which ones are blocking your business growth and finding ways to fix them.

To register your interest in future business growth workshops and receive details of early booking discounts clickhere


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Dolphin Business Strategies is a trading name of DB Strategies LLP. Registered No: OC331887. Vat No: 919 2599 83
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