As of today, there are 64 days left in 2010.
For many small business owners, these remaining days of the year are when you turn a profit and can afford to pay yourself. Each additional dollar you earn goes straight to the bottom line as you’ve already covered your expenses for the year. Yet without a plan for how you’ll maximize profits, you’re sure to leave money on the table.
Last week Sarah and I sequestered ourselves to a hotel in St. Louis for less than 36 hours to plan our last 70 days of the year. For us, it is that important to stop everything, re-evaluate our plans and decide how to finish off the year. We recognize there are opportunities in our business (as there are in yours) that won’t present themselves if we don’t put effort toward them. And we also recognize that without a strategy, we’ll say yes to the wrong things and may say no to some not so obvious things that are good for our business. We’ll be on defense instead of on offense.
At the start of our planning session we had no shortage of new, fresh marketing ideas to generate revenue. Creating new products, partnering with others, etc. As creative business owners, you probably don’t have a shortage of ideas either! As with in any brainstorming process, your first ideas aren’t necessarily the best. As we started to develop a strategy behind those ideas, we realized most weren’t right for what we want to accomplish in the long term. Whether it be a matter of a lack of resources to develop that idea or the amount of time it would take to implement, some just weren’t right for us right now. By giving our ideas time to breath a bit (and I’m not talking a lot of time as we were only together 36 hours) we developed a plan that was far easier to make happen and far more likely to be successful than had we not stopped to evaluate all of our ideas.
What we realized is we have some really, really great things that many in our community have never even experienced. And I bet you have the same scenario…clients who have never experienced your holiday card designs, facebook fans who have never taken that first step to buy from you.
So while a ‘sale’ in your business may get you revenue today, how does it affect your brand tomorrow?
Take time to STOP right now and plan these last 64 days of the year. Set a goal of what you want to accomplish in revenues. Then put together a few key actions that will get you there. Then share with us here, what your goal is and what you want to accomplish these last 64 days of 2010.