If you own or are looking to buy a small business, it may seem like you’re completely outmatched by major chains, corporations and multinationals.
But you’re not against the ropes: being the underdog has its advantages.
1. Small is agile
Your larger rival may have more clout due to sheer scale and established practices, but if you capitalize on what they can’t achieve – there will be a share of the market for you.
Being small means you can respond quickly to changes in your chosen sector, and as you are closer to the ground, you will be better placed to meet customer demands on a personal and highly productive level.
2. Small is distinct
You may not be as visible in the marketplace as your big business rivals, but if you create a strong brand and a unique selling point you can cultivate a loyal customer base.
Ask yourself what makes your business unique and set about incorporating it into your marketing strategy.
3. Small is smart
If you make sure you know your niche market well, you can establish yourself as a trend-setter.
Staying on top of industry trends is key to maintaining a strong image. Without an endless parade of middle men and acres of red tape, a small business can try out new trends and products far more easily than bigger competitors.
4. Small is ambitious
Aiming high, staying competitive and open to change is vital to long-term success.
Successful small businesses have highly ambitious, ‘can-do’ leaders at the helm. It sounds obvious, but if you don’t believe wholeheartedly in your product, then no-one will.
5. Small is popular
Compared to a big, impersonal corporation, your customer response can be immediate and personal, communicating with clients on a one-to one basis.
This not only fosters loyalty, but keeps you in touch with customer needs and vital feedback on your service.
6. Small is brave
Without being bogged down by corporate policy, small businesses can make radical changes, and, if they are not profitable, reverse them quickly.
A big staff, budget and audience base means big business simply can’t afford to take the risks that can often be hugely profitable for their smaller counterparts.
7. Small is selective
A smaller operation can afford to devote more time and research into employing highly effective staff.
And as communication channels are more open in small businesses, any issues or bad work practices can be ironed out quickly.
8. Small is co-operative
Retain your identity, make positive business relationships and widen your reach in one move.
Finding yourself in competition with a large company can be the impetus for creating strategic alliances with other small businesses.
9. Small is creative
Necessity is the mother of invention, and as most small business need to keep costs very low, their very nature encourages ingenuity and creativity.
10. Small is seductive
Finally, if you are really struggling in the shadow of Goliath, try flirting with him.
If you really can't beat them, join them! Identify the benefits a partnership with your company can offer a larger company, and use all the skills listed above to sell the idea!
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