As we’ve taken the first steps into 2023, national economists continue to go back and forth on our being on the cusp of a recession vs having already entered. The most optimistic national economists suspect to see the markets “tread water”. Some of our state’s top economic leaders in Texas paint a rosier picture. Though disposable incomes are being heavily pressured, employment and economic growth have performed very well.
Mirroring Texas’ rosier picture, the last two years in Groesbeck have seen significant upticks in the number of new jobs created and overall economic performance. As a result, there are more specialized positions with local companies than most patrons and area professionals realize. Multiple growing companies have made sizable investments in machinery, new technology, services, products and report enough workload to add additional shifts – if they can get the workers.
In 2023, a significant undertaking of the Groesbeck EDC will be working with those primary job creators to get the showcasing they deserve and promote their newly available positions. With that, we’ll be making headway on an initiative to help individuals who would like to but currently need help enter the workforce. Finally, we look forward to working with more of our businesses interested in exploring what it takes to stay relevant in changing markets and putting it into action.
In the meantime, 2023 looks like a good year for every business to think about shoring up what they have and revisiting the foundation to keep current customers coming back, win new ones and make smart, forward-thinking investments. Here are our top tips to earn growth in what may be a “tread water” year:
Focus on Quality: Make sure that the quality of your product remains high or improves if need be. This helps make sure customers stay loyal and new customers become willing fans. Consumers have more choices than ever. During economic changes, behaviors change. Gaining or maintaining quality output will determine the standout businesses from those struggling.
Invest in Technology: Take advantage of technology to make your business more efficient and cost-effective. This will help you reduce expenses, ease your workload, and remain competitive. If you need help discovering ways to leverage technology in your business, don’t hesitate to contact the local EDC.
Understand Your Market and the Local Market: Understand your target market and their needs. Also that those needs change as time, population and the economy change. You want to tailor your products and services to meet their needs so your business remains competitive. The EDC can help you better understand your current market, potential market, demographics and gain further market-specific insights.
Network: Expand your network by connecting with other local businesses. Gone are the days of finding success with the “us vs them” mentality in small-town business. Being cooperative with your peers will help grow your customer base, find partners, supporters and promotional opportunities you didn’t know you had. If you are actively seeking ways to meet or network with peers in your industry, reach out to the EDC. We can help.
Stay Curious but Give Your Changes a Chance: Understand the fine balance between not getting too attached and giving changes enough of a chance. Learn from your results, the industry, your customers and don’t be afraid to adapt. Resist the tendency to get married to a certain product, business model, direction or way of doing things. When you change something, give it a chance to get out there and stick to assess the real results.
Focus on Customer Service: Make sure that you provide excellent customer service. Don’t take your loyal customers for granted by letting service levels slip because you two are familiar. It only makes poor service feel personal. On the other side, you never know who that new customer is, what connections they have or how much winning them as a customer will be worth long term. Both are equally important.
Utilize Social Media: Use social media to connect with customers, market your products and services, and build relationships. Now, the first place prospective and existing customers look is online, on Facebook, Yelp or Instagram. If you need help figuring out where to start or need to improve your online representation (you probably guessed it…) reach out to your local EDC office.
Know Your Numbers: Financial health IS the health of your business. A thorough understanding of overhead, cash flow, profit and loss margins are the vital signs of your business. This is where you can find of wealth of insight on where your business stands to grow or is losing precious dollars. Having your numbers in order and well-studied is also one of the first steps to seek funding or take advantage of the most impactful programs.
Until next time, if you have any questions, would like to know more about the EDC, our services or anything contained here in The Quarterly, don’t hesitate to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.