As we close out 2022, it’s time for Black-owned businesses to look towards 2023 through the lens of emerging from a three-year pandemic. While it might be safe to be back outside, and while employers across the country call their workers back into the office, digital marketplaces and technologies are reigning supreme. It’s imperative that we learn what they are and implement them before the new year. Your focus is on growth after a recovery period. Here are the four main growth strategies around which Black-owned businesses can build a strategy in the upcoming year.
Revisit and Rebrand
Were you forced to reimagine your business mission and vision when the economy ground to a halt? Yes, the physical retail economy is gaining momentum again; however, the environment is forever changed. Nothing will be bought or sold in the same way as before. Customers are now ten times more savvy about digital purchases and engagement. Hybrid working is now pretty much expected – if not demanded – by the majority of employees. Most importantly, Black businesses have embraced digital technology in order to better serve their customers.
How can you revisit and rebrand to scale and grow? How does the 2023 landscape play into your new strategy? Black-owned businesses taking on 2023 with the mindset of revisiting and rebranding as needed, not just every few years, will bring about a renewed purpose and expansion in the Black business economy.
Continually Set New Goals
For those who are revisiting and rebranding, it requires continually setting new goals. Look at the market for 2023 and come up with your goals. Keep them realistic, but ambitious. Opening retail back up for shopping without restrictions is not, by itself, a recipe for growth or sustainability. As customers return to physical spaces, their expectations are higher – they want a better experience. You need to provide that improved experience to keep them coming back. How does your brick-and-mortar business compare with the ease and reliability of online services, deliveries, and marketplaces?
Sit down and brainstorm your new goals for the new year. Where do you see yourself and your business by the end of 2023?
The statistics on people starting their own sole-proprietor journey or freelance hustle shows that it has exploded. Black business owners now have access to a pool of talent that would have been unavailable if the shift to more financial independence in uncertain times hadn’t occurred. Black business owners can utilize these specialized contractors and freelance workers to perform tasks that would otherwise take up your time as the owner. This frees you from having to hire locally, pay worker’s compensation and/or having to hire an entire team to do what one specialist can do as their own company.
Form JV Partnerships
Lastly, no smart business owner ever did it alone. JV partnerships, also known as “partner marketing,” is a collaboration based on strategy. It is meant to give you and the JV partner company an opportunity to double audience reach. For Black-owned businesses with limited marketing budgets, this is huge!
Collaboration with another Black-owned business with similar – but NOT the same – clients allows both parties to pool resources, possibly even funds, to build both brands and expand their reach.
For example, I have several JV Partners. I am a salon owner who sells hair and I partner with a lady who customizes wigs. Every time someone buys hair from me, they get a discount on a wig custom-built just for them. And anyone who orders a custom unit from my partner, is given a discount on the hair I sell.
Think outside the box and get creative with how the relationship can be beneficial to you both and, ultimately, to your customers and clients.
Let us know the ways you are implementing growth strategies in 2023.