Two people brainstorming

Whether you own a local patisserie, a pet grooming parlor, or a digital agency, you’re surrounded by competitors that are doing their best to woo the same customers you’re looking to win over. To grow, you need a more prominent business presence, and to build that brand presence, you need money.

Even more so, you need to learn how to handle your business finances more mindfully and strategically, where to and where not to invest, how to let money work for you (and not the other way round), and many other monetary intricacies.

The more time you spend in the business world, the more you realize that it’s much more about how skilled you become with handling your brand resources, time, money, and people included. In a very important way, by learning how to improve your skills in all areas of business management, you’ll consequently improve how you handle your business funds. Here’s where you can start.

Focus on building brand awareness

Advertising has its place in the business growth lifecycle, but if you want your brand to serve a purpose, get more people to benefit from what you offer, and make a difference, then you should focus on brand awareness. There are so many cost-effective, often free ways to grow your business online without breaking the bank, all the while boosting awareness.

  • Set up a consistent, creative, and authentic social media presence. People want brands they can relate to, not brands with a vigorous sales agenda. Engage your audience. That will help you reach more people through sharing, commenting, and other forms of engagement, pushing you to the forefront of your industry.
  • Provide valuable, free content. Informative, useful articles and videos are treasure troves for your audience, and you should be the voice of expertise they turn to in their time of need. This helps you build authority and awareness in one fell swoop, attracting more people to your business.
  • Let your audience speak for you – encourage people to post photos of them with your product, share their reviews, entice them to share their opinions of your business. Honesty and transparency are essential for gaining the right kind of organic traction that will ultimately bring you loyal, long-term customers, and help you grow.

You can complete all of these tasks internally, staying within the limits of your budget. And yet, you can use these strategies to carefully build a brand that people will naturally gravitate towards.

Make smarter sales decisions

Internal actions of any business speak volumes of its ability to make an external impact on its target audience. In that sense, selling is more about how well you know your business to make the right predictions and projections, and then use that data as your northern star in taking smarter steps to meet your own expectations.

Start by learning how to define your sales budget as clearly as possible, and your sales team will then have a basis for setting their target goals and determining the necessary actions to achieve those goals. Analyze your current financial state, your cash flow, your customer acquisition and retention rate, your most impactful marketing tactics. Understand who your ideal customer is, get to know your competitors, collate all the data you can, and it will help you create a clear strategy for everyone on your team to contribute to growing your company in meaningful, purposeful ways.

Embrace a more flexible mindset

If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that things are changing more quickly than we can anticipate. The workplace is no longer the nine-to-five, clear-cut environment with a confusingly serious dress code, but a flexible, agile notion that embraces more levels of existence.

At the same time, the workplace is your desk at home, and an office downtown. So, to adapt to this new way of collaborating, you need flexible work spaces that will allow you to grow your business more sustainably. The goal should be to cut unnecessary costs that are draining your business budget and stifling creative collaboration at the same time.

  • Consider a hybrid, fluid collaboration model for your team – you’ll save hundreds of dollars on empty office space and invest in a more compact, agile environment.
  • Entice people to work from home regularly, and create shifts for in-office collaboration that help your employees build work-life balance more seamlessly.
  • Apply the same logic to other business decisions – does everyone need an account with every tool you use, do all your employees have to attend all meetings, every time? Think of it this way: reduce and repurpose. That’s the only way your business will grow in a sustainable, financially viable way.

Flexibility in how you use your budget and time will help you notice opportunities where there were none. Then, your employees will have more freedom in using their time more productively, they’ll be more engaged, and you’ll have more monetary resources to reallocate to more mission-critical work.

Save your most valuable resource: time

Growing your business often boils down to what you can afford not to do, so as to save your most precious resource to focus on the things that make a difference. And it’s often the most menial, repetitive tasks that take away most of your workday. That’s why it’s essential to start automating non-essential work and make other processes more efficient.

If, like most businesses, you use email communication to find new customers, partners, and investors, you should simplify and streamline as much as possible. With the right research and outreach strategy, imagine how much time you can save on email search and similar steps in the process, to focus on crafting better email content and communicating with the right people.

There are many other multi-step processes in your business that you can simplify with the right tools and strategies, to free up your time and manage it more effectively.

Let technology help you grow

Growth hacking has been a buzz-term for such a long time, but few people bother to dig deeper to understand it. Over the years, growth hacking has expanded to entail everything from productivity habits, strategies that enable growth, all the way to growth hacking tools that are designed to help businesses flourish.

To a great extent, tech tools for various purposes are the core components of business growth: they take over repetitive work, help you conduct unbiased analyses, save your time, and help improve teamwork.

  • Use analytics tools to understand how your business is performing and then focus on the aspects where you’re under-performing.
  • Rely on content research and creation tools to deliver optimized, effective content for your audience.
  • Automate your email marketing and social media, as well as parts of your accounting and bookkeeping.

Technology can be your greatest asset in spotting growth opportunities in your business, but also in how you handle your finances. Automating, analyzing, and slowly adjusting different aspects of managing your business will positively impact your bottom line.

Time to Take Action

From introspection, smarter budget evaluations in each department, all the way to focusing on your reputation instead of the actual monetary value attached to it, external growth will depend heavily on how willing you are to change your business internally.

Growing your mindset both in terms of managing money and time, as well as the people you work with will help you build a brand that will grow in relevance for its target audience. Simply put, if you focus on growing your brand and your team, the money will follow suit.