The market is changing rapidly in the modern age. It is becoming choppier, travel is slowing down and big businesses are still adapting to this new normal. In order to survive amidst all the chaos of the last few years, many companies have had to bring in drastic measures to stay afloat.
Come July, business strategies that were implemented in January would likely already need review. This trend is also set to continue into 2023. While we are still in the early portion of the year, you should ask yourself whether it is time to update your business strategy?
While it is unlikely that we will be returning to full lockdown – living as we did in early 2020, the future trajectory of COVID-19 is something a lot of consumers are watching very closely. Consumers are still wary of their physical health and some continue to restrict their ways of buying and researching products or services.
Many businesses have been on the back foot regarding COVID-19, as they wait for trends to appear before responding to them. A large portion of your consumer base are now taking covid safety measures into their own hands. If cases begin to rise again, they may be more reluctant to travel or perform business in person.
Rather than working to accommodate those preferences as they arise, keep a close eye on your national situation and adjust practices accordingly. Should you fail to take the necessary steps in ensuring the safety of your customers, they will find a business that will.
An Increasingly Digital World
Another way to update your business strategy is to get up to date with the latest trends in digital marketing and business. Prior to 2020, many companies were transitioning to the cloud but the recent events of the last few years have added more fuel to the fire. Throughout 2021, developments such as the rise of remote and hybrid working and virtual communication have been introduced to many organisations’ business strategies.
A move to the cloud is essential if you wish to be ready for the next steps in digital commerce. And budgeting for digital marketing, online advertising and website refurbishments are a must. If you don’t already have a plan for this in place – now is the time to get moving.
The Stock Market – Update Your Business Strategy
The stock market took a huge hit back in March and April of 2020, it seemed like the global economy was going to be struggling for a long time. However, the recession of 2020 ultimately lasted only a couple of months. Since then, growth has been on a sharp incline. Many business leaders are now getting ahead of themselves assuming that this growth will continue for years to come.
To predict the trajectory of the economy and markets that comprise is near impossible. Thus, don’t build your business strategy on optimism alone. Instead, you should create workflows and operating principles that can work in both good and bad times so that your business can comfortably ride the waves of whatever comes your way.
Where Are Your Consumers?
In 2020, businesses needed to adapt and be able to reach their customers at home to get their attention. Come 2021, many customers were eager to get out of the house and interact with businesses directly again. But what about 2022 and beyond? Businesses will need to be able to address the uncertainty in consumer behaviour.
Sticking to your storefront might cause more trouble than is justifiable. Recent reports suggest that the E-commerce industry may be worth over $16 billion by the year 2027, with little signs of slowing down past this point. For the next few quarters, you may be fine running a business as usual. That being said do not put all your eggs in one basket. For this reason, invest in bringing your business online. That’s where a lot of your potential clients will be!
You may even consider a hybrid model. By doing so, you would be accommodating both customers in those who want a traditional face-to-face experience as well as those who prefer virtual spaces.
Social Media Is Key
Social media usage continues to grow every day and has truly taken over the internet. With this in mind, as the amount of users increases, so do the media trends and practices. Thus posts that accrued large levels of engagement in 2017 may not necessarily perform as well in today’s environment.
One example where this is definitely true is in the ever-growing landscape of social media influencers. A few years back, influencers were mere objects of fascination or derision within marketing departments. However, in today’s environment, for businesses to dismiss them is at their own peril.
One Google-commissioned survey from Ipsos found that 40% of the millennial YouTube subscribers report that their favourite creators understand them better than their friends. Furthermore, this level of engagement and trust is much more likely to get people’s attention than simple tweets would ever achieve. Don’t let these business strategies pass you by when it comes to social media engagement.
Just as both consumers and markets have changed their trajectories in the past year, employee priorities are going through changes too. Quality of life is increasingly privileged over large salaries and flexible work is being favoured over traditional office setups also.
In fact, attempting to quickly re-transition back to how things were before may actually run you into issues with some members of your team. Some are experiencing this currently and realising how much expectations of ‘normal’ worklife has changed.
Recent surveys suggest that 39% of people would consider quitting their job if asked to give up remote work in favour of returning to full-time office work.
This extends further than just your current employees. Prospective employees will also be expecting accommodations when it comes to remote and flexible working options. The classic 5 days a week in an office model is quickly becoming outdated and businesses need to adapt to the wishes of employees in the modern world.
Stay Local or Go Global?
Another important thing to consider to update your business strategy is whether to expand your market to new areas. In the modern world and especially with the rise of the internet and business online, it is becoming increasingly easier for even SMEs to communicate and conduct business across borders.
However, the pandemic that has affected the world over the last few years has caused some complications for international business. Disruptions to travel and international shipping meant that businesses needed to rely on local and domestic markets. But what does this mean for 2022? Should businesses bank on borders reopening for international business or should say stay safe and focus wholly on closer markets? Truthfully, the best way forward is a little bit of both.
You should avoid abandoning your local operations in the hope that your business horizons will expand in the next few years. Instead, continue to serve the needs of all existing customer relationships and wait patiently for a good time to begin expansion operations further afield.
Ensure your business strategy reflects this by emphasizing operations you know can be sustained into the future while preparing for potential opportunities that way arise down the line.
No one knows what the future holds for the rest of 2022 and beyond. The uncertainty that fell over 2020 and 2021 isn’t going anywhere and your business strategy needs to adapt accordingly. Prepare your company for all possible scenarios and expect to see growth in the future.
Work With Me and Update Your Business Strategy!
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