Business is like a battle, and to thrive in this environment, companies need to be incredibly creative and use everything at their disposal to get ahead of the competition. Larger organizations typically have a larger pool of resources to draw on to succeed. Nevertheless, there are certain things that even small businesses can do to even the odds and win clients over from the big guys.
Fake It ‘Till You Make It
One advantage that big businesses have over their smaller counterparts is a prime real estate. With enough revenue to spare, corporations can afford to locate their offices in the most respectable locations. When dealing with new customers or future partners, this plays a huge role in creating a positive first impression.
Luckily, however, small businesses can counter this disadvantage by making use of serviced offices. For a fee, you can access a wide range of administrative and secretarial services that comprise pretty much everything that a high-end office would. You can conduct all of your client or partner meetings here, offering a highly professional image, all the while saving a ton in rent costs and administrative headaches.
Dress the Part
This should go without saying, but dressing appropriately can tell a lot about you to your counterparts. We’re not saying that you need to wear a suit and tie every day. However, some start-up and small business owners, especially those in the tech industry, seem to believe that wearing a hoodie and cargo shorts during a meeting denotes a sense of sincerity. This is not the case.
It is generally acceptable to dress however you want when you’re among your coworkers. However, when engaging with clients or partners, it is preferable to make them feel like they can trust you with their time, money, and energy by wearing more respectable attire.
Play to Your Strengths
This may come as a surprise to some, but small businesses have several advantages over the larger competition. Studies have shown that 60% of customers trust family and small businesses more than corporations. Playing to this strength is an excellent way to syphon clients away from the competition.
Focus on Service
Customer service is considered by some to be the most important metric when evaluating a business’ success. Yet, merely going by the slogan the customer is always right is not necessarily the preferred way to approach the issue. Treating them like they are part of the family, is a more productive alternative. Instead of looking at all possible ways to get money out of their pockets, opt to bring real value to your relationship.
If your clients see you as trustworthy and reliable, they will not only offer you their business but will also promote your brand to their friends and family. Word-of-mouth is one of the cheapest and most effective forms of marketing, after all.
The Good Word
While on the topic of trustworthiness and social proof, also consider getting your hands on some testimonials. These can have a tremendously positive impact on those who come in contact with your organization for the first time. If you have several satisfied customers, ask them if they were willing to give you a short testimonial about how your product or service made their life better and easier. Put these testimonials on your website’s landing page and let them work their magic. A wise choice is to have these endorsements in video form as they were shown to have a more significant impact than simple text.
With the proper know-how, every business, no matter how small, can make it in this increasingly competitive world.