The economy is getting slowly better, and with it, the fortunes of small businesses are improving as well. Many think that it will keep improving and that new jobs will be created and that small businesses will expand. Since we help many small businesses with their communications needs, we sincerely hope that this is the case. However, whether the economy keeps improving or not, as a small business owner you want to be able to compete with the big companies – of course at a fraction of the cost. Here are 3 ways that you can do just that.
Invest In Your Team
I know, I know, you are a small business. You may even run a one-man show. But whatever size you are, you will never get anywhere if you do not have a team to help you out. If you hire employees, take the time to train them to do their jobs right. The worst thing that can happen is for your employees to damage relationships with your customers because they were not trained properly. If you do not have employees, you need to do two things. First, find people that you can outsource some of your more menial tasks. And second, get a network of professionals that can help you out with advice, send referrals your way, and be a resources to your clients.
Don’t Let Your Prospects Know You’re Small
Just because you are a small business doesn’t mean you have to let your prospects (or even your customers!) know that you are small. Run your business professionally. Offer great service, make sure everything looks professional, and mind the details. Often, by having a professional logo, website, packaging and marketing materials, you can appear much bigger than your are and give a great first impression to any prospects.
Make Sure That You’re Reachable, Even When You’re Not
Do you like leaving voicemail? Of course not, no one does – and that includes all of your customers. But, sometimes you are on the phone or in a meeting when the phone rings. What can you do to make sure that your prospects and customers always talk to a live voice? It is usually cost prohibitive to hire a receptionist to handle those calls for you (and even with a receptionist, sometimes they are on a break, call in sick or are on the other line). Often, the simplest solution is to hire a small business answering service to handle the calls that you can’t (perhaps someone like PCNAnswers!), They will have a friendly and professional operator answer your calls 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year so you’ll never miss an important call again and your customers will never have to talk to a voicemail box!
Of course you know your business best. You know what your customers need and how you can best meet their needs. And if being more reachable and making a great first impression is something that would help your small business, we would love the opportunity to talk to you about your customer service needs!