We live in a day and age where certain brands and businesses have overtaken the global scene. From social media giants like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to tech innovators like Apple, Google, and Microsoft to e-commerce brands such as Amazon and eBay, the risk is bigger for small start-up businesses to succeed against these bigwigs. In an unstable economy where the littlest of changes can shake things up and scare several investors, small businesses are facing big risks with little assurance of success. But apparently, success is possible even if you are a small home-grown business with minimal capital and limited resources.
With a lot of courage and planning and an insanely amount of charm and luck, it is possible for your small business to prosper despite the competition. But first, find your niche and know your market. Make sure you are familiar with your product or service, so you can improvise and be flexible when things don’t turn out as planned. If you look around you, there are actually a lot of local businesses that have been around that still operates and there are others that are quite new but is doing pretty well already. Is there a magic formula you have to follow in order to be as successful as the others if you are a struggling entrepreneur yourself?
Sometimes the most valuable advice comes from your fellow entrepreneurs, not the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. At Facebook, we know that behind every business is a person, and behind every person is a story – with insights and advice to share. That’s why we created the Small Business Council which consists of entrepreneurs who share a common belief in the importance of serving their customers, their communities, and each other.
Each year we meet with our U.S. Small Business Council members to hear from small businesses across a variety of industries, sizes and geographies. Earlier this year I had the pleasure of meeting our newest 2017 Small Business Council members to learn from them and help them support their communities and fellow businesses.
Here are a few of my favorite tips directly from the Small Business Council members past and present:
Learn from and connect with other businesses.
“Visit your competition and introduce yourself. Nurture and develop a good relationship with them. Refer customers to them, as well. It's give-and-take and there really is enough to go around. Don't be afraid to ask them for help or advice.”
These are just some of the few time-tested tips that have worked for many small businesses over the years. Even multinational brands swear by these practices while they were starting up and before they conquered the world. It is not impossible for small businesses to achieve international fame because it has been done many times through the years. And if there is one piece of advice you should never ignore, it is to take advantage of modern technologies that are widely used by bigger businesses as well in promoting, marketing and running your business because they are indispensable tools in a globally-competitive world.
A staggering 95 percent of the world’s consumers live outside America’s borders. So, raising the standard of living in other countries and expanding their middle classes is crucial to growing the market for products made in America.
“When it comes to boosting the American economy, never forget strengthening the State Department and America’s international assistance programs. It’s just that simple -- American investments in global development and diplomacy open new markets for our nation’s companies and create jobs right here at home,” said Liz Schrayer president and CEO of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, which recently issued a new report exploring this issue, entitled “America’s Global Economic Leadership: A Strategic Return on U.S. Investments.”
Each time the U.S. helps to expand access to a new market overseas, the USGLC points out, exports can soar, and America benefits -- especially small and medium sized businesses, U.S. workers, and state and local economies. And with millions of American jobs directly tied to exports, it’s easy to see how strong economies abroad can directly affect livelihoods and businesses in the U.S.
While it is comforting to know that you can run your business within the country and still make profits (not just simply make both ends meet), there is a bigger audience you can tap outside the 50 states of America and make even bigger sales. It is possible now with the help of modern technology. Others are already doing it because you do not always have to work hard if you can work smart. There are various factors small businesses should now look into in order to succeed and unless they take all these things into consideration can they truly prosper in the tight market of today.
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