Three resolutions to help your SME reach the next level in 2017

We’ve all been there.  Making a resolution to improve ourselves in some way during the forthcoming year.  Getting fitter, making more time for others and giving more to charity are all common challenges we set ourselves at the turn of the year.  Whether we stick to them or not is another matter.

But it’s also a suitable time to address your business’ shortcomings and set some high-level goals for the period ahead.  What are the niggly things that annoy you but haven’t been dealt with yet?  Why not make these your business new year’s resolutions for 2017?

Here are some to get you started – stick to them and reap the rewards!

1 – “I will embed the business in the community.”

All businesses have an impact on their area of operation through the creation of jobs and their physical presence.  But imagine if your business was considered as an integral part of its community.  Imagine the improved relationship with your customers and the extra business you could win as a result.

Try creating a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy that benefits a nearby charity, school or group.  Galvanise your staff to contribute to collections for a foodbank (see how GAS did this here), start a charity committee, donate an hour of each employee’s time to a charity and build your company’s reputation and standing in your area.

2 – “I will commit to social media.”

By now you’ve probably discovered that social media isn’t going away and is an essential component in how businesses engage with their customers.

The platform is beginning to mature.  More robust analytics and targeted advertising methods mean it can be one of the most cost-effective ways to market your business.  When carried out correctly, it can drive traffic to your website, improve your customer service and introduce new people to your brand.

So you’ve got a Facebook page and you check it a few times a week.  But committing to social media (really committing) could be the wisest move you make this year.  Answer these questions:

Do you post every day?  79% of marketers said that as little as six hours per week on social media drove increased traffic to their site. 

Do you include graphics and photos with every post?  Twitter estimates that tweets with a pic get 30% more engagement.

Have you ever posted a video?  Four times as many consumers would rather watch a video about a product than read about it. 

Which channels do you use and are your competitors using the same ones – are your customers present on a channel your competitors don’t use?

Do you engage with relevant conversations to your business online?  A quick Google search can show you where you need to be visible.  Then, burst on the scene with some engaging content, humour and a friendly demeanour and watch your traffic fly.

3 – “I will not pay too much because I’m too busy.”

Let’s face it, you probably don’t have time to scour the market for the best energy deal (and we don’t just mean using a comparison site).  You probably haven’t had time to assess your waste collection schedule either.  Or the thermal efficiency of your windows.  Or a few of your other overheads.

You pay your money and expect a good service.  But don’t worry, you’re not alone.  Many SME owners file this task under “nice to do” rather than “essential”.  Check any “Top 10 reasons SMEs fail” list and managing finances effectively is up there.

That’s where Great Annual Savings Group can save you time and money.

We specialise in checking over your outgoing running costs in a range of areas and suggest improvements, which could shave significant chunks off your expenditure.  We saved our customers collectively millions of pounds in 2016.

Take a look at a small sample of our average sector savings last year below:

  • Charities: 25%
  • Education: 26%
  • Public bodies: 35%
  • Engineering: 22%
  • Hospitality and tourism: 20%

We’ve worked with businesses of all sectors and all sizes across the UK and Ireland.  Take a look at what some of them said about working with us.

If you’d like help getting the best deal for your business, get in touch with us at GAS for a free, no-obligation discussion.

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Paul JohnsonGroup Financial Director

Paul Johnson is very much a home-grown talent.

He joined Great Annual Savings Group in its infancy, fresh from a youth career as a professional footballer with Hartlepool United.  He quickly established a reputation within the business and aced all required accountancy qualifications in the space of four years to become the Group’s Management Accountant.

Several successful projects later, Paul was promoted to Head of Finance.  When the former FD left GAS, he took on the mantle of the business’ most senior finance professional; boasting a string of incredible achievements all under the age of 30.

Quote:

“I have witnessed phenomenal growth at the Group over the many years I’ve worked here and I’m looking forward to guiding the Group into an exciting new chapter.”

Interesting fact:

Paul made his professional debut for Hartlepool United against Bournemouth in the Football League.  Some say Danny Ings still resides in his pocket to this day.