Saving money is as important to a business as making money. You work really hard to get a new client or customer on board and it can be very tempting to throw even more money around to try and land the next one, even re-investing what you’ve just made to ensure that it happens.
It’s just as tempting to go around buying new equipment for staff to give them the very best in order to do their jobs, upgrading perfectly good systems just so you can be a bit ‘flashy’ showing how modern you are and what kind of things you use to get the job done. While this might impress some potential clients and customers, it won’t impress everybody – not least your accountants who won’t be all that impressed to see you spending thousands each month rather than leaving it in the account to make sure your rates are paid on time and that you’re in a position to expand either the business, hire new employees or invest in the future.
There are plenty of ways in which you can take your business forwards without it having to cost significant sums of money. That is often the biggest problem for managers and directors, trying to find the balance between an essential expense with the aim of attracting new business and keeping the money in the bank.
The first place to start is with in-house training. You have taken on staff members based on their abilities and what they have to offer you as a business and your customers as a whole. If you can find a way for them to spare some time, perhaps a couple of hours each week, to teach their colleagues a few things about their specific areas then other members of the team will be able to develop their own skills and become even more of an asset to you in the long term.
Paying for training courses is a great way of helping them to learn from industry experts, but these courses cost significant sums of money and also means time out of the office – in many cases the courses are whole days. Keeping them in the workplace and learning from people they know and trust, who they can keep going back to and asking questions, saves the business money while encouraging better morale in the workplace and developing new skills.
The second way to develop the company is to have weekly courses delivered by staff members in influential positions. A lot of companies have people who will go off to conferences and give talks to other industry professionals, but these people very rarely speak to their own colleagues. While speaking to an audience full of professionals and prospective customers is great for brand reputation, educating your existing staff is just as valuable. Even if it is only a ten-minute slideshow explaining how a particular method can save time and increase results.
Finally, rather than spending significant sums of money on elaborate marketing campaigns, do something personal on social media. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube are the most popular – especially in the UK – and companies can utilise the reach and engagement to appeal to specific people and businesses. This will show what you are capable of, engage with the audience and pitch to prospective clients based on their own personal opinions and criteria.
If someone wants a service you can offer and post that on Twitter for example, you can contact them directly and speak to them about what they’re looking for – potentially landing a new client and you’ve not spent a penny on marketing.