The world has gone through significant change over the past few years; it’s only natural that business owners have to rethink and refresh some of their practices.
We asked business owners the best change they’ve decided to make in recent months, and how it’s impacted them. Here’s how they responded:
Using Google Ads to generate leads
We are a real estate investment company, and until last year, we used old-school lead-generation strategies—such as direct mail and cold calling. These strategies weren’t working anymore, so we decided to shift to online lead generation. I completely revamped our website and began producing content and building links to increase our site’s authority and organic search rankings. As we were doing that, I also began running Google search ads. This is where I began to see immediate fruit from my labor. I’m so glad we made that decision, because we’ve gotten great deals from those Google Ads and have already doubled last year’s revenue.
—Jordan Fulmer, owner, Momentum Property Solutions, Huntsville, Alabama
Enhancing the client experience
One of the top changes I’ve made recently has been focusing my photography business’ marketing efforts around client experience. I’ve done this in an effort to book more high-end weddings. I’ve created new ways for clients to engage with my business. For example, I started sending out an in-depth client guide which includes FAQs and a step-by-step guide from the time they book their wedding date to receiving their albums.
Additionally, in order to present a deluxe experience, I began sending clients personalized gifts, which can be anything from a vow book to long-lasting flowers, and now use a client management software, HoneyBook, that lets me send and manage client proposals and contracts right through the platform.These efforts have paid off, and so far my bookings for 2023 and 2024 have increased by 25%.
—Taylor Krauser, owner, Taylor Jordan Photography, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
Moving to all-digital products
I sell football coaching clinics and books on my website, and the big change I made recently was transitioning from selling physical books and CD clinics to 100% electronic content. Now, all of my books and video content are on-demand via a streaming service or, in the case of books, PDF documents. This has saved us lots of time, money and hassle with our sales. Selling physical products was problematic. Things like shipping rates, delivery times and holidays were out of our control and at times resulted in unhappy customers.
Now, we have a 100% margin, where the only expense is our time. We no longer find ourselves having to salvage customer relations for issues that are out of our control, and we don’t have to keep up with growing shipping costs. Since we made the change a few months ago, our revenue has grown by a significant amount, and we’re seeing a greater profit without seeing a higher volume of sales.
—Michael Campbell, co-owner, Throw Deep Publishing, Indianapolis
Creating a more productive work schedule
Prior to 2022, I was coaching clients Monday to Friday at times that were most convenient for them. This left holes in my schedule that weren’t large enough to get much done, and I realized that in order for me to have the white space I needed for activities like content creation and administrative tasks, I would need to craft a better schedule. Now, I only see clients on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Mondays and Fridays are for everything else I need and want to do. Thanks to this change, my productivity has skyrocketed!
—Tracy Beavers, founder and owner, Tracy Beavers Coaching, Little Rock, Arkansas
Introducing productivity bonuses
One of the most awesome changes I’ve made to my business in the past year is implementing a productivity bonus, so that employees receive a percentage of the value of the work they perform. This has been a big hit with our staff and increased their compensation. It rewards those employees who work most efficiently and motivates employees overall to do better. The peripheral effects of this program include improved communication throughout the organization and an increase in profits by more than 8%, despite the bonus payments increasing our payroll costs.
—Zachary Smith, founder and owner, Smith’s Pest Management, San Jose, California
What’s been the best change you’ve made over the past year? Share your insights in the comments section below!Print this article