As all of the world braces for a possible downturn in the US economy caused by a shutdown of the Federal government , I want to encourage small business owners to keep your eye on the ball and do not put to much stock in the present moment. Moments like these are when less visionary companies make a lot of bad moves.
Because business anticipate a slow down in business they start cutting jobs, slowing production and worst of all cutting back on marketing. Advertising less has never been the solution to any money problem. Advertising better and more directly to the right client is a good move. But cutting advertising when things slow down is the easiest way to kill your business.
Let me share a tragic example from the real estate business that I saw first hand.
When I would travel to the south for my real estate development business I would always come across the best agents from the same real estate firm. As I moved around Atlanta I kept hearing the name of the owner and her agency and I always heard how well they were doing in the market. Not long after I began hearing the name I was invited to an invent that the firm was giving. I had never send a more professional, elegant, and sharp group of real estate professionals in my fifteen years in the business. This firm was minority and woman owned and I was especially impressed with the quality this team exuded.
It saddened me that when the real estate crash hit I began to hear their name less and less. They became less visible and most of their real estate agents left the firm or left the real estate business totally. The truth is the crash in their market, if seen properly, should have been a cash cow for this team of professionals.
The Atlanta market was a prefect storm for the real estate professional. Not only did you have one of the highest foreclosure rates in the country but you also had one of the highest population grow rates in the country. No matter the economy everyone has to live somewhere and all those foreclosed homes needed to be resold. It is not rare today that almost every home sold today in that market has 2 or 3 offers made on it by either homeowners or investors.
I believe that if the owner of this firm would have see this market crash for the opportunity that it was and translated that to her team they would be even larger than they had ever been. The perception of a bad market tricked this firm into shrinking back and missing out on the opportunity to fully take advantage of the market.
I watched a small firm buy as many as 35 homes per month for four years after the crash and sell them to Austrialian investors. In the same Atlanta market that native Atlantians quit on.
Here are the four steps that should have been taken and implemented by the firm:
1. Access how the business opportunity has changed or is changing
2.Figure out who is buying and what their buying and how many potential buyers there are
3.Put a marketing plan and action plan together for your team and go over it until you have total buy-in from your team
4. Market like crazy to the available buyers because most of your competition will be doing what they have always done or they will quit.
I hope you can apply this insight to your business and thrive from whatever changes come your way. Their is always a buyer in every market. Find your buyer no matter what happens with the federal government in the short term.
Wishing you Wealth, Wisdom and Wellness,
Manager of Wealth