Let us start by defining the business cycle.
It is the process where the economic activities go up and down.
Picture it like stock market price. There are times when it is going up. There are times when it is going down.
Business cycle is consists of four phases:
1) Contraction (slowdown in the pace of economic activity)
2) Trough (the lowest point during contraction before economic activities starts to pick up)
3) Expansion (economic activity starts to improve)
4) Peak (the highest point during expansion period before business enters contraction phase again)
The first part of the business cycle is the contraction.
This is the time when sales are slowing down. This is the time when people are controlling their spending due to fear of possible unemployment or salary raise freeze. This is the time when the investors are cautious in dumping their money into the stock market. The market is fearful. If the slow down is severe, economists call it recession.
The second part of the business cycle is the trough.
This is the lowest point of the slow down before business activities start to pick up and turn around. When the lowest point is so low, economist calls it depression. This is the time when the economy is the bleakest. People have gone sour of the stock market.
So what is the best thing to do as an entrepreneur during this business cycle?
1) Shut down the noise.
Watching TV and news will only create unnecessary fear. This is the time when everybody has an opinion about economic gloom. You can read it on the headlines, editorial and even on cartoon jokes. Knowing that there is an economic slow down should be enough for you. Enough to move you into massive action. Enough to keep you busy navigating your business through rough waters.
2) Use your creativity.
When your customers are fearful, it takes double effort to encourage them to buy. It is like swimming upstream. But the good news is, customers will still buy. They still eat, shop and fill in gasoline for the car. They might cut off some spending but they still need to buy. Your goal is to take some percentage in their budget pie.
And yes it would also be good to sell products that help people earn extra income or save more – anything that would help them survive during this difficult moments.
Here are other creative things you can do:
Use your imagination to come up with more ideas. Try them. Do what works. Drop what doesn’t work.
- a) Bundle things together and give bulk discount
Let us have some example. Pretend you have a gasoline station. You can offer up a package of full tank gas, car wash, change oil and car check up for a 10 – 20% discount. Compute the appropriate discount.
- b) Sell things separately
For example: Your business is giving transformational leadership seminars. You normally give a 3-day intensive training. You can divide your seminars into small series. Then offer it at a more affordable price.
- c) Add freebies
For example: You have a restaurant. You can give out a free dessert for a certain amount of food purchase.
- d) Modify paying schemes
Offer terms and installment plan instead of a cash purchase. Instead of selling a software program with one time payment, why not try selling it via monthly installment payment scheme.
- e) Let them try your product or part of your product for free
If you are selling an ebook, give away free report that contains few chapters. This portion should convince them that they are getting value for their money. For this to work, your product should be very very very good. Of course, we know that. In the onslaught of fierce competition, quality means survival.
- f) Change what you sell
There are some products that are hard to sell during specific period (maybe, an ice cream during rainy season). Insurance could be challenging to sell when all the news in the TV talks about companies going bankrupt. Some insurance super salesmen right now might disagree with me. If you believe that your product faces a dead-end, introduce another one. Remember, businesses exist to serve the customer needs and not the other way around. Adjust.
“You may not be able to control the wind. But you can change your sail.”
The good thing in life is that there is a rainbow after the rain.
During the third part and the fourth part of the business cycle, grab the opportunity. During this business cycle, market all you can. Strike when the iron is hot.
This phase in the business cycle is the time to use your creativity even more. Here are some more recommendations:
1) Don’t just sell – Upsell
Upselling is the process of selling something in addition to the order. Every time you order, the friendly crew asked, “Do you want fries with it?” This single phrase has brought millions of dollars to your favorite fast food company. Be creative. When successfully done, you will be amazed how much more profit this few words could add.
2) Introduce your more expensive product or service
Your customer buy some soda from your hotdog stand.
“Do you want our very special 20-inch hotdog?”
“You will not go hungry for 48 hours.”
Ok I am just kidding. But I hope you get my point. Sell your premium, special and more expensive products.
Be inspired by Albert Einstein. He said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge.”
You are only limited by your own imagination.
Success Quotes Infographics Series – twigg cycles
Brian Clark, the owner of the copyblogger, posted a cool infographic Don’t Spam Your Mom.
I love infographics. The image and the information blended and combined could deliver a very powerful message in such a short span of time at a single glance.
Indeed, a picture is worth a 1000 words.
I’d like to follow Brian’s example.
May you spice up your day and inject success motivation into your veins with our success quotes infographics series. This is the first in the series.
Diligence is the mother of Good Fortune