Today is our first missive on looking at the top issues facing business and individuals and developing solutions to improve our position.
I am going to aim to provide you with techniques and methodologies, which you can use to defy the doom and gloom merchants and deliver success from both a business and personal aspect.
Let us begin with economic uncertainty, or if you want, just uncertainty.
In the news recently we’ve heard about two big named businesses calling in the Receivers – HMV and Blockbuster Videos.
Why would these large and previously successful companies go to the wall? Only time will tell the full story, but we can speculate from what we know through observation.
- They both failed to truly diversify.
- They did not innovate to compete. Whilst you could shop online, they did not take into account the download generation, which provides for instant gratification, although Blockbuster did have rent online option.
- They maintained a heavy cost base, whilst continuing a decline in sales.
- They failed to market, giving the consumer reasons to shop with them.
- Given the above, it would be safe to say that they did not have a sound strategy.
Just to prove that you can increase sales in a poor or unstable economy, let’s look at some outstanding success stories:
ZBD is a company that designs and supplies e-paper display systems removing the need for traditional paper labeling. They focus on their market by generating a low total cost and tangible return on investment.
They analyzed the market, saw a need, developed a solution and generated a sound strategy to target the market. ZBD gathered in-depth market knowledge and developed a unique position.
They invest 50% of their income on research and development.
ZBD also develop partnerships, something we are going to discuss in detail in a future missive.
This generated a growth in sales for 2012 of 17,910%. (No, that is not a typo)
CommAgility Ltd pioneered the next generation mobile wireless technology, generating high performance applications.
They maintained a flexible business in order to react quickly to their customers’ specific needs.
They have really honed their niche target market, focusing not on their business, but that of their customer. CommAgility make a concerted effort in developing long-term relationships with their customers.
They have kept their cost base intentionally low, avoiding the large outlays and overheads of larger companies.
This strategy has led to a growth in 2012 of 2,656%.
And finally….FedEx – you either love them or hate them, but it would seem that quite a number of people love them. They provide a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services through various subsidiaries.
Despite their competitors suffering loss of sales, FedEx showed them that they could do better. In the first quarter of 2012, they increased their sales by 76% on the same period the year prior.
Their strategy has been carefully thought through, focusing their marketing, improving quality and cutting costs. They have identified one of their largest cost elements (fuel) and have decided to invest in more efficient aircraft, planning to purchase 27 new 767-300Fs.
In the past year, their stock has risen by 10.15%.
There are a number of reasons as to why they have achieve success and over the next number of posts, we will be exploring these in more detail. However, there is one trend that stands out and that is Business Strategy.
The first step to ensuring a successful 2013 is to have a sound business strategy. Without this you will not know the direction you need to travel and will thus wander aimlessly, missing opportunities and failing to deliver.
You can learn more about how to generate a sound business strategy by reading my blog (Click here to read).
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