Identifying opportunities for growth and development is a crucial element of running a successful business, and taking things to the next level. In practice, however, this can be easier said than done; being able to spot opportunities for growth is a skill, and one that needs to be honed and practised over time.
Fortunately for you, we have a number of methods and techniques to help you identify growth opportunities in business, and make sure you take advantage of them. Read on for all you need to know!
- Understand Growth Opportunities
If you’re looking at your company as a whole, then there are two main ways to look at growth opportunities:
- The internal way – This focuses on how your own company can grow and develop. For example, if you want to increase sales or improve customer service, then this is an opportunity for you to do so. You could also use this method to find new markets or products to sell into.
- The external way – This looks at how your company can grow and develop outside of itself. For example, if your company has a strong brand but no real marketing strategy, then this would be an opportunity for you to work with someone who can provide you with some great ideas. Or maybe you’ve got a product that’s really popular, but you don’t know how to market it better. Again, this is a chance for you to get some expert advice from someone else.
- Identify Your Needs
Once you’ve identified your goals, you’ll need to figure out exactly what you need to achieve those goals. This is known as ‘needs analysis’, and involves asking yourself questions such as:
- How much money do I need to generate per year?
- Do I need to expand my current range of products/services?
- What kind of customers do I need to attract?
The answers to these questions will give you a good idea of what you need to do to reach your goals, and discussions and conversations in these areas will naturally unlock new areas for growth and potential opportunities.
- Look For Local Business Growth Opportunities
The local market is a great place to identify growth opportunities – particularly if you are a smaller business. When it comes to identifying local business growth opportunities, there are two main options that you might consider:
- Geotargeting – Geotargeting allows you to target specific locations within a particular area. So, if you wanted to target people living in London, you could set your geotargeting parameters to only show results to people living in London. You can use this information to offer discounts, offers, and advantages to customers in a certain area, and this can be very useful in growing and developing your business.
- Community Building – Another option is to look for ways to build relationships with other businesses. By getting involved with community groups, social media pages and events, you can tap into a whole network of contacts. These connections can help you spread the word about your business and gain valuable feedback on your services and products.
- Identify Your Pain Points
Now that you’ve figured out what you want to achieve, you’ll also need to think about what’s stopping you achieving them. This is called ‘pain points analysis’, and it helps you identify things that are holding you back or preventing you from reaching your goals.
For example, let’s say that you want to increase sales by 20%. You know that you need to make changes to your marketing strategy, but you don’t know how to go about making those changes. A pain point analysis would allow you to see whether your current marketing budget is sufficient to cover the costs associated with increasing sales, and whether you need to spend more money on advertising, or whether you need to cut down on spending elsewhere.
It’s important to note that not all pain points are bad – some are actually positive indicators that you should focus on improving. If you find yourself struggling to get clients, then perhaps you need to work harder at networking and building relationships. On the flip side, if you’re finding it hard to sell your product because no one wants it, then maybe you need to re-evaluate your pricing structure.
When it comes to identifying business growth opportunities, it’s important to remember that every opportunity has its pros and cons. Having a good understanding of the best methods to identify growth opportunities will enable you to make better decisions when it comes to choosing between different opportunities.
You can also talk to our business growth planning consultants here at Practical CFO, for experienced, targeted advice that can help your business grow.