While enjoying a cup of Starbucks the other day, my colleague Mark Riesenberg of Human Resources Unlimited (www.hrugoals.com) and I were talking about growing one's business given the depressed housing market and the tremendous volatility in the stock market. With my marketing background and current focus on Feng Shui Solutions for Realtors (www.SellYourListingsFaster.com), I thought you might be interested in my perspective. So go ahead and grab your favorite beverage, read my views on the subject and let me know your thoughts. And be sure to visit Mark's blog for his viewpoint on Thinking BIG: Focused & Organized- - - he is an extraordinary business coach!
When the economy is growing and businesses are doing well, it is easier for us to attract new customers and grow our revenue base. Businesses tend to "ride the wave" of prosperity that permeates the marketplace. But in today's economic climate of financial uncertainty, both at the business and individual level, customers are thinking twice about spending their money on services and products. Today's customers are much more selective. So, now more than ever, savvy business owners recognize that they need to get focused about making their business be "relevant" to the changed needs of their customers. Just as customers are "shifting to a new set of financial priorities", businesses need to respond and think smart about how they can deliver a service or product that is in alignment with these priorities. For example, families are rethinking their "entertainment" budget and as a result, may choose to spend more time at home. As "at-home" family time increases, companies may re-position themselves to provide products and services geared for the new "stay-at-home" family.
Now more than ever is the time for companies to strengthen their focus and market their business. As some of your competitors take steps to cutback on their advertising expenses, their less visible presence creates the opportunity for your business to take center stage by thinking smart and staying in front of your customers. Now is the time to actively market your business and remind potential customers that they have a need which your company can meet. And it is through marketing that customers realize that they even have a need. Did consumers even know they needed an iphone, for example, until it was invented?
Let's turn for a moment to residential real estate. As a home stager, I work closely with the real estate community in New Jersey. Now more than ever, selling a home in today's housing market demands a strong marketing campaign, including home staging to showcase the home as being "best in class", as well as a healthy dose of realtor enthusiasm. "Even in the Great Depression", according to one member of the North Central Jersey Association of Realtors who recently said to me, "people were still buying homes".
The opportunity is there for the astute realtor and other business professionals to think creatively. Advertising generates revenue and revenue is precisely what companies need in an economic downturn. So now more than ever is the time to re-evaluate your marketing efforts and target your advertising to the changing lifestyle, demographics, and financial circumstances of today's customers. And for realtors, of course, this means an investment in home staging to generate that needed interest to get potential buyers in the door. The time is now, more than ever!