Business growth and evolvement is a full-time movement within any organisation, but nothing evokes use of the word ‘strategy’ like the beginning of the year.
As with each New Year, deciding on a realistic strategy for growth in 2013 will bring up the usual questions. Can you sell more of the same? Do you need to be selling differently?
Or, 2013 could be a chance to question current sales strategies and decide whether it’s time to transition into an entirely different area.
Whatever your outlook, asking some questions can quickly reveal whether the inner workings of your business are up to speed with any progression you may be anticipating. Making these predictions can also help you bring your current sales strategy into line.
Sell more or sell differently?
This is often the biggest and vaguest question plaguing strategy. Or you could just do both. Giant Australian fashion newcomer The Iconic played both cards last year. The brand snapped up as many brands as it could and just when it felt like it couldn’t sell any more product, the fashion house found a new way to deliver its online message: in print. Pacific Magazines won a contract for The Iconic magazine – 100 pages and 100,000 free copies for the first issue – which launched in November.
Magazine readers were drawn back to brand content and the online store with pages of action codes, barcodes, tags and digital watermarks. It was considered to be the first time an Australian print title has used this technology to such an extent.
Will showrooming revamp the retail point?
Will 2012 be remembered as the year of the pop-up store? Maybe not. But it should be known for a time when big brands ran with the idea and turned the humble pop-up into their own slick versions of showrooms. Think Samsung, Apple.
Rather than letting pop-up culture be another nail in the retail coffin, marketers have turned this practice into showrooming – engaging your customers to check out products in brick-and-mortar stores before actually encouraging them to buy online. Smartphone apps such as RedLaser can also scan a barcode and send customers to the best available online deals.
How will smartphones affect your 2013 sales?
Can you further embrace smartphone technology in 2013? A survey this year revealed Australians spent $155 million online via mobile, according to ecommercewebsites.com.au. Meanwhile, research firm Gartner reports ‘smart devices’ including smartphones and tablets are expected to hit 821 million worldwide this year and 1.2 billion in 2013.1
How can you set new strategies?
Many businesses experience a slower end to December and an unproductive start to January. It can make an ideal time for setting new directions. Many brands may also be ahead of their competitors, having already taken the time during November, before the Christmas rush, to lay the foundations for new 2013 strategies.
Many businesses spend valuable time playing catch-up in the first half of a new year. Being ready to question whether your 2012 strategy will translate into 2013 should be high on your New Year agenda.
This article represents the views of the author only and not those of American Express.
Peter Wood is a freelance journalist with over 8 years experience writing for areas such as banking, finance, real estate, advertising and marketing more. Peter has contributed to regular columns in newspapers, business magazines and online, advising on issues such as business growth, cash flow management, investments and loans, credit control and more.