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How to Develop a Growth Strategy that is Right for Your Company

By Joane Ramsey

Can you clearly identify your value proposition? Do you know your target audience and understand your current revenue streams? Do you know your competition? In this video, Joane Ramsey and Andrea McOwen share eight strategies to develop an effective and actionable growth strategy for sales growth.

Joane Ramsey: 00:01 Welcome Andrea. It's good to have you here today.

Andrea McOwen: 00:11 Thanks Joanne. It's great to be here.

Joane Ramsey: 00:14 Today we're going to talk about a topic that is in the forefront of most executives, how to develop a growth strategy that is right for your company. Before we dive into this discussion, I think it's important to clarify what we mean by growth strategy.

Andrea McOwen: 00:29 That's a great idea, Joanne. When we talk about growth strategy, we are looking into developing a strategic plan that will be used by your company to increase sales of products and services, therefore, increasing market share. Growth strategies, when well thought out, allow businesses to overcome challenges. But the question is always, "How do I develop a growth strategy that is right for my company?"

Joane Ramsey: 00:53 That is such a great question, Andrea. I'm a firm believer that to help determine a strategy that is right for your company you have to be able to identify your own value proposition. And that is the promise of value that will be delivered, communicated and acknowledged to the customer. It is also what the customer believes about how value will be delivered, experienced and acquired.

Andrea McOwen: 01:18 That's so true, Joanne. It is truly about having a clear understanding of what makes your company different than the competition. Asking the questions around, "Why are your customers coming to you when they need a product or service like the one you offer? What differentiates you and makes you relevant in the marketplace?" Once that is identified, then it becomes easy to acknowledge and communicate that to the world.

Joane Ramsey: 01:43 Yes, that is correct. Another component of a good growth strategy is understanding where the growth will come from. This is when you want to know what your target audience is. This is when you dig deeper into your current customer base and ask yourself, "Which of your customers do the most business with you and which offer the greatest value of to your business?" Look at what distinguishes them. What do they have in common by understanding where the current business is coming from, you'll be able to have a clear picture of your customer profile and then focus on those prospects and customers who have the highest potential to help you grow your business. This is going to be unique to your organization.

Andrea McOwen: 02:25 That's right, knowing where current and new business will come from is really important. Ask yourself, "Where is the business currently coming from? Which products and services are most desirable to your customers? Are they sustainable?" You should also consider exploring other revenue streams and whether they would be feasible for the business. We all know that to launch new products and services takes man hours as well as experience. But if they are carefully looked into, they might be worth the investment.

Joane Ramsey: 02:55 Yes, and we can also not forget to look into competition. It is just not about exploring what they have done, how they conduct their business, what is unique about them, but it's also about asking yourself, "What changes can your business make that can position you to increase market share?" That is when it becomes what I call, fun exploration.

Andrea McOwen: 03:15 That's right. It can be fun. Understanding your competition gives your company a glimpse into what's out there, but then, you need to choose an area of growth. You need to have a clear understanding of where you want to grow and what resources will be necessary. Do you need to hire more people? Do you need to launch a new product? Is your warehouse able to handle the volume you're forecasting? These are all things that have to align with your company values and direction in order to be right for you.

Joane Ramsey: 03:44 That is correct and it does need to be right for you. This is where it's always fun to explore, but to your point, then you need to make a choice and the choice will determine what kind of market research you need to undertake in order to confirm whether your strategy is the right choice for your company. I cannot tell you how many times we have worked with companies that go all the way back to choosing an area of growth, but stop short of confirming whether it was a viable choice for the growth they're expecting, and then wonder why they failed. Market research is critical at this stage. This is where the facts you uncover will help you determine the timelines, the budget, and ultimately the goals on how to move forward and whether you are making the best choice for you.

Andrea McOwen: 04:30 Yes, that's true, Joanne. And once that's done, then it's easy going from there because the rest of it is all what you would normally do when developing a plan, setting goals, creating the plan, setting benchmarks, determining the requirements for growth, communicating that strategy throughout the organization and investing in your employees.

Joane Ramsey: 04:49 You know, Andrea, you bring a really good point that sometimes I think is overlooked, which is communicating the strategy to and investing in your employees to drive the growth strategy. So often we meet with clients that have all those elements we discussed in place, but did not take the time to communicate or invest in the development of their employees to drive the growth's strategy. And that can be a difference between success or failure.

Andrea McOwen: 05:14 That's true, and that's a great reminder that developing employees and telling them why is also a key piece to a successful growth strategy.

Joane Ramsey: 05:22 I completely agree. Thanks, Andrea. This has been a good conversation for everyone watching. Can you please recap for us?

Andrea McOwen: 05:30 Sure. In order to develop a growth strategy that is successful, you need to do the following things. Clearly identify your value proposition, know your target audience, understand your current revenue streams. Look at your competition, choose an area of growth, conduct your market research, implement a plan, and please, don't forget to communicate your plan and develop your employees so that they can help carry on your plans successfully.

Joane Ramsey: 05:59 For more great content, please follow us on LinkedIn and check us out at StrategicEnhancement.com. Thank you for being here with us today.

Published: September 7, 2022

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MEET THE AUTHOR

Joane Ramsey

Senior Performance Improvement Consultant

A native of Brazil, Joane first came to the U.S. as a foreign exchange student with AFS. She returned to Brazil where she successfully ran and sold two different businesses. Returning to the US in 1992, Joane put her business ownership experience to work with a small manufacturing company running the day-to-day operations and facilitating sales with South American companies. She joined SEG in 1999, where her experience has helped her clients get the results they desired. Joane has a B.S. degree in business management from North Central College, where she majored in international business and Spanish.

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