Strategies for pulling your business back from the brink of extinction

By Henry Brown

Even if you are a workaholic and your business is everything to you, it’s a stressful time when you’re doing all you can, but the business is not generating sufficient returns. What can we do when we’re at this point in time where we’ve got to keep it together, not just for the sake of the company, but for everyone who works in it? Coming up with an action plan is vital, but it’s also about making the most of the of these potential resources…

Trimming the financial fat

Outsourcing is one of the simplest and most effective ways of cutting costs. If you’re struggling, but you view outsourcing as something that’s going to detract from the company image, consider this to be a short-term solution. You haven’t got a choice in the matter right now! Technology is one of those things that’s very expensive, and so, if you outsource to a managed IT service company like Digitel not only are you giving your company a chance of surviving, you are handing the technological reins over to a company that knows what they’re doing. Because technology is an ever-evolving beast, it can cost a lot of money in-house to keep everything and everyone up to snuff.

Contacting former customers

Never conclude that you can’t get back a customer who has bought from you before but has since changed vendors. While everybody’s needs change, to ask for their help isn’t groveling, but it’s about seeing if the customer is satisfied with their current supplier. You may catch them at a time where they are dissatisfied with the current service and you can provide a better alternative. There is no harm in trying!

Selling more to existing customers

Do you have a dedicated customer base? Selling more to these customers can bring in additional business. Maybe you could sell more of your current products or services to the same customer, or you could work at selling your stock to the customer’ contacts. If you have a customer in the palm of your hand already, you have to exhaust all possibilities. We have to find ways to increase revenues and what better way to do this than to use what we’ve already got in front of us?

Reinventing the company

It can be a long process, but it doesn’t have to be. Larger businesses are prepared for the long change, primarily because their business has many moving parts. To turn your small business into a new, better version of itself doesn’t have to take months or years. In fact, this gives you the opportunity to look at your strengths and weaknesses and transform the business into a competitive entity. Looking at the niche you are (or are not) providing can force you to reevaluate your business when you should have done this a long time ago. Perhaps you can also identify one or more new niches that could use your products or services.

Keeping your company afloat is something every small business has to go through at some point. It doesn’t feel good at the time, but it can force you to think on your feet and take advantage of things that you hadn’t considered before.


Henry Brown is an online marketing executive. When he isn’t talking shop, he’s roaming the streets of London, uncovering the extra-ordinary in the ordinary.

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