Growing your business requires you to develop products and services that clients want to buy. It is no use if you don’t have a market for your product or service. I share 2 powerful strategies to help you develop products or services that are designed to sell and grow your profits.
1. Know your existing clients – It is important to develop a close understanding of who buys from you and why they buy from you. I talked about this in detail in my blog why do customers buy from you really?
Develop a profile of your ideal client. Understand them in terms of psychographics and demographics. What are their pain points, aspirations, age, and gender? What sort of things would they say to others when they recommend your products or services? Make sure that your products are tweaked to more effectively meet the clients needs.
Be in regular touch with your clients to understand how things are changing in their business or life. This will give you clues and anticipate what sort of products to develop next.
Regularly review your Ideal Client Avatar to make sure that it reflects your current client base.
2. Use the product-market matrix – Once you have understood your clients well then use this product-market matrix to assess which markets or products to develop next to grow your business.
(a) Drill deep strategy – I would first start with quadrant 1 of the matrix above. Look to sell more of the existing products to the existing market. I remember as I initially got BNI going in India I focussed only on developing the market in Mumbai.
I started systematically developing more chapters in a local vicinity. Pretty soon I had multiple clients from a specific locality. It built more traction and word of mouth in that local area. This helped me get more business from that same area. The average chapter size started to go up and this helped members generate more business in a local chapter. This in turn helped me increase my client retention as I was better able to service my clients.
I was also closer to my clients and was able to meet them regularly as I also lived in that local vicinity. This helped me build stronger relations which helped me understand my clients even better. It helped me optimise my business and grow the skills and teams to better develop my business. This allowed my business in Mumbai to flourish and look at new horizons for business growth.
(b) Sell existing products to new markets – The next quadrant I suggest you focus on is quadrant 2. For example, after having developed about 7 chapters and about 200 members in Mumbai, I decided to look at starting the same service in a new market – Bangalore.
By this time I had a good understanding of the ideal type of client that would do well in BNI and looked to train my team in Bangalore to approach similar types of prospects there too. With my previous experience in Mumbai, I understood what sort of objections would come up and how to convert better. As a result my team in Bangalore was able to get started much faster and it grew our business.
(c) Sell more to existing markets – I would suggest the next quadrant to work on is quadrant 3. In my previous commodities business where I serviced supermarket chains with basmati rice, we looked at other complementary products we could sell to our existing clients.
This strategy allowed me to increase sales by over 100% in just 3 months. You can read about this in more details here: How to sell more to existing clients.
It is important that whenever you look at developing new products or services you run any solution through the AERR business decision making model. It will help you from making costly mistakes.
(d) Sell new products to new markets – This is quadrant 4 and the most riskiest propositions. It is important that you take time to understand your key strengths as an entrepreneur and make sure that you also understand the new market deeply before taking the plunge.
I would suggest that you consider this when you have mastered quadrant 1 to 3. Also deciding to venture in to quadrant 4 you may need partners or a proven who have expertise in this. In my case I decided to take up a franchise that had a proven track record.
When I decided to leave my commodities business in Kenya and start BNI in India I decided to play in quadrant 4. To mitigate risks I first worked with a group of management consultants to determine if my strengths matched with the skills required by the opportunity. What were the potential threats and could my weaknesses be under pressure when faced with those threats.
Which quadrants are you currently playing in? How could you use these 2 strategies to grow your business? Leave a comment below with your answers.