Every business needs to be reborn at some point to avoid a closure. The timeline for each business differs, therefore, there is need for a strategic positioning and planning towards a flight that will ensure the business’ longevity.
Can you mention some brand names that you have known since you were a child but are still everywhere today? Indomie? Close Up? Coca Cola? What have these brands done to keep themselves in business? Let’s take a look at what is called the Business Life Cycle.
According to Forbes, there are four stages every business will go through. As an entrepreneur and business owner or even an employee, it is your responsibility to identify which of these stages you are in and make necessary plans for the sustainance of your business. These four stages include: Startup, Growth, Maturity and Renewal/Decline.
The startup stage is the infant days of the business. Every business has to pass through this stage because there is always a beginning for anything. At this stage, you are not making so much sales because you are still trying to get your clientele. You are working on your marketing strategy to ensure you are reaching your market. However, this is also the stage that most businesses fail. This may be due to a heavy financial burden, ineffective marketing strategy, and so on. You would also have to work on keeping your employees, therefore, no matter how low sales are, you have to be consistent in their salaries.
At the growth stage, a business already has some form of structure. Your customers can clearly identify you and your sales must have increased. Your business should be between three to five years now. You should be strengthening your relationships with previous clients and making new ones as well. You must try to substantiate your presence in the marketplace.
At this stage, your business has a sustained structure and is dependable. Here, you are about eight to ten years in operation. Your position in the marketplace is undoubtedly recognised and you are maintaining a good reputation.
The moment you notice that revenue has dropped a number of times is not when the decline begins. It has started before then. However, what do you do if you do not intend to ‘cash out’? This is the stage that you have to make a decision to rebrand and come back refreshed. Unfortunately, many businesses did not recognize this on time and the decline led to their closure. It requires a lot of money and time too.
So, the answer to the question on what brands such as Indomie, Close Up and CocaCola have done to remain prominent in the marketplace is renewal. They have constantly refreshed their offers, brand image, and so on in such a manner that keeps their customers coming back for more. Do you remember the idea of the Indomietables? Kids absolutely loved it. It is exciting to see some of your favourite characters smiling back at you at strategic locations where you have stuck them such as your refrigerator. I remember I received some gifts from Indomie when I was a child. The two trays I received apart from the other prizes are still in my kitchen. Whatever strategy you intend to use, be sure to always know what your customers would like to have.
Reinventing your business may mean: adding a new product, reducing the prices of your products, getting new sizes/ new offers, repackaging, amongst others. Ensure you keep showing your target market that you are innovative and ready to satisfy them while still making your profits.
Author: Lawal Tomi
Tomi is a recent graduate of English at the University of Lagos. As a trainee at Ready Set Work 2018, she has a passion for promoting employability and entrepreneurship. She believes in investing in people.