The main goal of any organization is of course, to increase revenue. Without a healthy stream of revenue, your organization cannot survive, no matter how good the idea behind your business. It is thus the goal of every company to increase revenue. Thousands of industry handbooks have been written about this topic. But the way to increase your company’s revenue can be broken down into 3 simple steps.
1. Hire good salespeople
Yes, this is an expense. But there are ways to compensate for this necessary expense by lowering other organizational expenses (a topic we shall be covering in the future: “How to Lower Expenses in Your Organization.”) Good staff are hard to find these days and finding good sales staff is especially difficult (see: “How to Recruit Good Salespeople”.) Nevertheless, do not give up. One way we identify good candidates is by locating success stories in their past. It could be setting up a lemonade stand at the age of 8 or working for a charity organization during their University days. It is not too difficult, if you have clear objectives during the search period, to locate a proactive team player. A proactive person will not be satisfied just to meet the minimum target, especially if their role is commissions-based, they will take the initiative to come up with new ways to increase sales. You will not have to micromanage a good staff and as we all know, time is the real money.
Ever walked into a Japanese ice-cream store and walked out with ice cream and a cream puff? We all know that rolling out a product that your company specializes in has always been a good business model (just look at Moleskin, the designer notebook company). But these days, upselling in your e-commerce business or cross-selling associated products have become a market inevitability. IKEA sells furniture, but walk into IKEA and you’ll spend about an extra $10 more in that cafeteria of theirs (yum, Swedish meatballs). Uber is now also UberEats. The resilient South East Asian budget airline, Lion Air, now provides parcel delivery service. The examples are endless. It seems obvious that diversifying sales through tactics like cross-selling and providing Add-ons as a consumer option have become ubiquitous in marketing today. Take advantage of this trend and make it work for your business! Cross-selling allows you to be endlessly inventive in expanding your inventory and to increase your overall sales revenue. It is also a great way to sell faddish items with short-lived sellability. Last, it creates endless opportunities in co-branding (think about Apple and Nike, Taco Bell and KFC). Whatever the combination, the model of cross-branding may let you revive a product, tap into a new market, and it definitely boosts awareness of both brands.
Similarly, upselling uses the psychological trick of luring customers in with an unbelievably low-priced offer. Budget airlines are notorious for their expansive use of this marketing strategy. The fact is that customers are usually more willing to open their wallet when the price is very low. For instance, would you not buy a transistor radio for $3.74? But another well-known fact is that once customers buy the first item, they are much more willing to continue spending to purchase a subsequent item. You might be highly reluctant to pay for a $45 meal. But once you buy a main dish for $20, you might be willing to add a side ($9), a dessert ($6) and maybe even top it off with a good glass of wine ($10). Upselling is known to work because it alleviates the immediate pressure of price on the consumer.
Whatever model you choose, upselling or cross-selling, you should realize by now that rather than blindly selling a product according to methods of traditional marketing, today’s consumer trends actually give your business a lot of good ideas to work with, when trying to increase your revenue.
3. Build Your Network & Online Presence
The last tip for increasing your revenue is a traditional one. Businessmen from many generations have always believed in the importance of the network. In Asian/Chinese communities especially, the idea of the “network” takes on a very deep meaning. The network that you maintain is not just a network of business opportunities; the idea extends to hospitality, a sense of community, of favors extended to those in your “inner circle” (no matter how wide that circle). Today, that notion has modernized itself a little bit; its new name is: “followers.” Doing business in Asia today, your social media presence is arguably as important as your traditional network. Your Twitter “followers” might be a faceless, anonymous crowd you’ll never meet. But their existence is your business’s existence online. All kinds of companies today have a very polished online profile. For consumers, your business’s website is like a reference letter. A company’s website can tell a curious potential client if (1) your company is modern (2) if it is doing well enough to be able to afford a good web developer (3) if it boasts of good customer service through the inclusion of functions like Live Chat.
Of course, a website, an up-to-date Twitter page, a generally active social media presence are not the only factors behind a company’s success. It is equally important to send your staff out to networking events, and to do some research into the type of networking events which would be most beneficial for expanding your network. To tell you the truth, a lot of staff find networking events to be either (1) a hassle or (2) not really important. Because of this, it is frequently the case that nothing much comes out of them. Train your organization to treat networking events seriously! Perhaps, these events can be treated almost like a game with a target of making at least X number of new contacts. The event itself is just the tip of the iceberg. A lot of follow-up work is necessary. Your organization must be disciplined and imaginative in terms of maintaining and deepening the relations with your network of clients and potential clients.
And there you have it. The 3 really essential ways through which an organization can increase its revenue. Get great people to work for you, be strategic about your marketing (upsell and cross-sell), and last but not least, treat your social media presence as a part of your network (but also work on your offline network)! Heed these pieces of advice, and you will start to see your organization’s revenue climb.
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