Archive for the Grow Your Business Category

Grow Your Business (Part 8) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , on September 4, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessAnd we now come to the final installment in our series exploring various options available for expanding your already successful business. I trust you’ve read the preceding seven Grow Your Business blogs, so you have much to think about.

Internet
Internet businessIf you’re not on the Internet, what are you waiting for? “Bill Gates said that by the end of 2002, there will be only two kinds of businesses: those with an Internet presence, and those with no business at all.” Seven years later, do you think anything has changed? Absolutely. More people and companies are conducting business online. Is the market saturated? Not by a long shot! That’s not to say the “super highway” is an “easy street.”

rlle-00015You need to be a savvy internet marketer, making sure your site gets traffic. With more that 4 billion sites out there and the number of users doubling every 100 days, there’s plenty of competition and plenty of new customers. If this is the route of interest, map out your strategy clearly. I’d recommend hiring a terrific web designer, who knows how to optimize your site. Remember, http://www.Elance.com is a economical option to take, without compromising quality. Worth a look.

Keep in mind, “Content is king.” That’s what draws the visitors and keeps them returning. Practically everything is measurable in the world of e-commerce, so learn quickly what your visitors/customers are interested in and meet their needs.

That’s it folks. The ideas have been presented. Do your research, and when you’re confident that you’ve made the right decision, go for it with the same determination you did when you started your original business. I wish you…continued success.

If you have any questions or comments, or interested in a consultation,
please write them below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.

Grow Your Business (Part 7) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , , on September 2, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessWe’ve now touched on quite a few methods of business expansion – Location, Franchise, Licensing, Diversity, Other Markets, Government Contract, and Mergers and Acquisitions. It’s quite a lot to think about, and if you’re business has reached the point where it’s ready to be taken to the next level, then these are all options to consider…wisely.

Global
Going GlobalThe first blog on this subject was about “location,” and this one takes it a step further…or shall I say, further away. Global expansion is yet another option. To do this, it’s not necessary to purchase another company already doing business in another country. You can do that, but it’ll be far more complicated than just setting yourself and product up to be a good fit in the international marketplace.

DistibutorsWhat I suggest you do is look for foreign distributors who will carry an inventory of your product and resell it within their own markets. One aspect of this that I always liked was that if you’re manufacturing your product elsewhere, you can set up a system such that you never even touch it. Inventory is shipped directly to your distributor. The less you touch it, the lower the cost per unit. As for finding these choice foreign distributors, get online, because they’re out there. Start by looking at foreign companies that have a U.S. presence. Search for trade organizations, foreign chambers of commerce established in the United States, and branches of American chambers of commerce in foreign countries.

I’ll say it until I’m blue in the face…and type it until my fingers are numb – Take the time to plan out any expansion effort. Do your homework, utilize your resources and network. The right decision done right will payoff righteously.

If you have any questions or comments, or interested in a consultation,
please write them below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.

Grow Your Business (Part 6) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , , on September 1, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessIt’s been a few days since my last blog on this subject. I trust you’ve been doing your homework. No expansion can be taken lightly. You put a lot of effort into making your business successful, so spend the necessary time making sure the next one will also be.

Mergers and Acquisitions
Mergers and acquisitionsIf you’re in a position to acquire another company, this might be the way to go. Wikipedia defines M&A as “…the aspect of corporate strategy, corporate finance and management dealing with the buying, selling and combining of different companies that can aid, finance, or help a growing company in a given industry grow rapidly without having to create another business entity.” I couldn’t have said it better. Remember the reasoning behind M&A is that the two companies together should be more valuable than the two companies separate. If the numbers don’t support that concept, or at least some point in the near future, consider another company (a competitor, a supplier, customer, or one unrelated) or another expansion strategy altogether.

Can you believe there are still more methods of growing your business. There are! I’ll touch on a couple more in the next blogs.

If you have any questions, comments, or interested in a consultation,
please write below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.

Growing Your Business (Part 5) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , , on August 28, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessMoving right along, our list of ways to grow your business continues to…for lack of another word…grow. Locations, franchising, licensing, diversifying…what’s next you ask?

Other markets
BusinessDo you have a brick and mortar? Are you an e-commerce business? Perhaps my question should be, “What type of business are you not?” The answer to that question might be your next area of expansion. So many options here – Online, storefront, domestic, international, call centers, conventions, sales representatives, and on and on. Then of course you can consider focusing on a different demographic – adults, college kids, teens, special interest groups, baby boomers, elderly, and on and on. Who have you not targeted? The posibilities here are vast…or re-read Growing Your Business (Parts 1-4) for other suggestions.

Government contract
Government contractsRegrettably, I don’t know too much about this, but what I do know is that the US government is that largest buyer of goods and services in the world – to the tune of about $250 billion. Get in good with them, and you’re expansion might be locked and loaded. Now it’s not easy. Lots of paperwork and regulations, but again, worth it. Once you’re granted a government contract, there’s little competition from outside marketplaces. Check it out. Uncle Sam might want what you’re selling.

Still more ideas to come. Hope your entrepreneurial ideas are flowing.

If you have any questions or comments,
please write them below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.

Grow Your Business (Part 4) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , on August 26, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessSo, my entrepreneurial and expansion conscious readers, what method of growth attracts you – Multiple Locations, Franchising or Licensing? Not sure yet. Read on. There are plenty more options available. Today’s topic – Diversify.

Diversify
DiversifyFor many, diversification is the best approach to innovation and sustainability, but strangely, many oppose it because we’re told to stick to our core competencies. Diversifying adds risk when you’re doing business outside that which you’re most familiar. Learning about new products and services, and attracting new customers is not always easy. The other perspective is never have all your eggs in one basket. I lean toward the latter philosophy, but like I always say, do what’s right for you, your business and your comfort level. I would explore this methodology when you feel that your products have grown about as far as they can. It’s believed that diversification can also work very well for newer businesses that have a solid cash flow and are in seasonal, low-growth and low-margin industries.

Low hanging fruitBottom line here that you need to be sure you’ve really maximized all the low-hanging fruit before you start taking this on. Take your time and do it right.

If you have any questions or comments,
please write them below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.

Grow Your Business (Part 3) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , on August 25, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessWe’re exploring options for growing your already very successful business. Thus far, we’ve tackled two distinct possibilities – Adding another location and franchising. Both are great options, but you need to make that determination. Now on to one of my favorites – Licensing.

Licensing
Superman lunchboxIf you have a product, whether it be branded or service, this might be the way to go. And what’s particularly nice about this route, is that it tends to be less costly than our previous two methods of expansion, and yet very effective. Unlike other ways of growing your business, you can receive money and royalties upfront, with much less risk than would be associated with launching your own company, manufacturing and selling your products.

Idea protectionIf this sounds appealing, start doing your research. You’ll be looking for companies that provide similar services or products as you do or are considering doing. Before you get overly ambitious and start calling all your hot leads, take it from one who had an idea stolen from him (turned into a motion picture), talk to an attorney who specializes in intellectual property rights, trademark and patents. You’ll want to make sure you’re fully protected.

What makes sense for you and your business? Lots more ideas to come.

If you have any questions or comments,
please write them below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.

Grow Your Business (Part 2) by Robert Finkelstein

Posted in General Management, Grow Your Business with tags , , , , , , , on August 24, 2009 by Robert Finkelstein

Grow Your BusinessSo you want to expand your business? There’s lots of ways of doing it. The first option we discussed was opening a new location. No matter what you decide, make sure you’ve done your homework. If you’re running a successful business, I’d like you to keep it that way. Next up…franchising.

Franchise
FranchiseIf you’ve created a terrific brand and a very thorough operating systems…I mean, you’ve got it down, literally…on paper…this might be the way to go. Have you had experiencing with franchising? Ever owned one? Know someone who does? I would recommend networking with people in the franchising community. Find yourself a mentor, someone who’s successfully done what you’re considering doing now. You’ll want to become a member of the IFA, International Franchise Association. You’ll want a good franchise attorney, and probably a franchise broker too. The latter is used by more than half of all franchisers, and account for more than 10% of all sales. In other words, you’re going to need to do some research.

FranchisesSo if this seems like the route you want to take, you’ll need to streamline all your internal systems and marketing materials. Look at as if it was your company in a box. If you gave it to someone, could they open it, find the instructions and get started. Kind of a plug-and-play system. The more complicated you make it, the less appealing it becomes.

In order to successfully franchise you’re busy, you need to be ready, willing and able to grow your vision, remain a strong leader of the company and brand, and keep a keen focus on your goals.

If you have any questions or comments,
please write them below or email me at Robert@RobertFinkelstein.com.