Your Small Business Strategy Guide

If you don’t have a strategy, your business cannot succeed. A good product or service isn’t enough. A good brand isn’t enough. Neither is being the best at what you do. In the end, the question is, do you have a strategy to get, keep and build upon the customer base you need and will that strategy work. We don’t know what your business strategy is, but we’ve got some ideas we think will help. Enjoy.


Enforce vacations. Strange but true. Some companies are realizing the importance of downtime for company success letting especially hard working employees who tend not to take off to do just that. It’s the equivalent of recharging your business’s batteries, and, hey, the boss should be included! WSJ

Stop selling to yourself? It’s too bad but some small businesses spend so much time shoving their own ideas on customers that they never bother seeing the customer for who he or she is, an individual with unique goals and needs. Stop projecting your own expectation on your customer. Listen to them instead. Bloomberg BusinessWeek


Stand out in the online world. Let’s face it, these days getting your message out about your product brand or service requires using the Internet. The only problem is that, while the barriers for entry are low, so are the chances that anyone will find your content ever. Unless… Copyblogger

Study your taxi driver. The guy who drove Chris from his hotel to the PayPal campus at Ebay’s headquarters near San Jose, Cal. recently can teach you a lot about small business, Chris says. Read the post and learn some basic principals every small business should operate by. Chris Brogan


Learn the basics of bootstrapping. In marketing especially, bootstrapping can be huge. Who needs a gigantic marketing budget. Creativity is better. Learn the basic principles of getting your brand known. It is the first step in successfully creating a business model that endures. Youngentrepreneur

Don’t just create a brand! Seth believes you should reach higher. And even if you don’t care for his choice of words—Brand as mythology?—you can clearly see it’s better than being just another product on the shelf or another Website on the Web. How important is mythology to your brand? Seth Godin’s Blog


Create a powerful message. As if in answer to Seth’s post, here’s how you create something memorable. But creating a message that resonates requires asking a lot of questions first, questions about who you really want to reach and how to go about reaching them. Answer the questions and you will be heard. Liz Strauss

Deal with picky customers. No matter what kind of work you do, it won’t be good enough for some clients. Dealing with the picky ones is as much a part of running a small business as any other part of what you do. Do your best with all your clients and customers and remember the picky ones are just your greatest challenge. You’re The Boss


Make yourself more trusted. Perhaps you can’t get more customers without first gaining more trust. How many people know who you are and what you stand for? Increasing your trust factor may not increase sales…initially. But in the long run, being a trusted leader has its benefits. Duct Tape Marketing

Teach others to boost your brand. It may not have occured to you that teaching could be a business activity. It can. When you teach others and change their lives, you build a powerful brand and tremendous value that can impact many parts of your career or business. Read more. Personal Branding Blog

Joshua Sophy Joshua Sophy is the Editor for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 16 years. A professional journalist with 20 years of experience in traditional media and online media, he attended Waynesburg University and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists. He has held roles of reporter, editor and publisher, having founded his own local newspaper, the Pottsville Free Press.