Marketplace turbulence. On the surface, it may appear to be a big challenge. Customers start choosing something else. Inflation is driving prices up to new record highs. Sales are drying up.
But, marketplace turbulence can be the best thing to ever happen to your company. Here’s why:
It Is A Chance to Explore New Ideas
Sure, you like your current slate of customers and have built your business on what they need right now. But when sales slow down, it is time to get that brain working again.
This could be just the motivation you need to drive exploration into new answers.
When the same old thing isn’t working, it is time to get creative! Think about:
- Design – what creative magic tricks can you design to stimulate new sales? Challenge the notion of doing the old way.
- Listen – time to talk to your customers and learn how to solve their current problems. Don’t assume you know.
- Partner – can you partner with another company to combine to build something new? Collaboration drives innovation.
- Process – what process improvements can you build to drive more engagement or sales? What’s broken?
- Target – can you target a new set of customers? Who is buying?
- Teach – with so many innovations in fabrics, decoration methods, and technology, can you teach customers and enrich how they see you in the marketplace?
- Support – your customers could be struggling too. How can you support them to increase their sales? What do they need the most right now?
- Upgrade – what upgrades do you need to compete?
When there is confusion, your job is to help people find clarity. This means that you may have to reach out and take their hand. They may not come to you. By being supportive, helpful, and looking to assist your customers when they need help the most, your company becomes more essential to their success.
It is a Chance to Explore New Opportunities
Marketplace turbulence means that the status quo is upended. A few weeks or months ago, you would have never considered partnering with another business on a project or program.
Now, it could be a blessing for both companies.
What new opportunities are in front of you right now? Are you looking for them? Sometimes we get so attuned to grinding away at our “normal” work that we fail to miss the obvious opportunities as they stroll on by.
This is why it is important to get out of your office. New ideas are not there. The epiphany will happen when opportunity strikes when you least expect it. That’s why you need to go to the chamber of commerce meeting. Or the trade show. Or the networking event. Go cold calling for new customers.
Stick out your hand and introduce yourself. Ask the other person questions, and center that conversation on what they are struggling with right now.
How can you help?
Maybe it is something you can do with your business, or maybe it is just an introduction to your friend that has the answer.
Connections are what drive business. Seek more of those that matter.
It Is The Chance to Grow
We grow by doing things that we’ve never achieved before. Sometimes there is serendipity in failing at new things. You discover something about yourself when you don’t know the answers automatically and have to learn something for the first time.
Stressing your brain feels good. Don’t you feel incredibly satisfied when you figure something out? I know I do.
Ignore your self-imposed limitations. For example, I’ve heard plenty of people say, “I can’t even draw a stick figure!”
You are what you repeatedly do. One of the hardest things you can do is to “ruin” a perfectly good sheet of white paper by drawing a line on it. It is not because drawing a line that is so difficult, it is the potential ridicule from other people that say, “Oh, are you trying to be artistic now?”
That’s what hurts the most and the reason why people don’t draw (or insert the thing you want to do but can’t because of what other people will say)
Draw anyway. If that sheet of white paper is intimidating, start with a yellow Post-It-Note.
Growth happens when we keep at things that we aren’t good at when we begin. Eventually, skill develops if there is enough repetition and learning from failure.
That’s how you learned to cook, kiss someone, or drive a car.
So, when the marketplace is turbulent and there is disruption in the air, start trying new things to see if something just might, sort of, maybe, work.
Then, do it again. You are one step closer to mastery every time you try and somewhat awkwardly fail. Each time you don’t do anything, you become more stagnant and possibly irrelevant.
It Is A Chance To Be Relevant
What do you need to matter to other people?
Not too long ago was just seemingly yesterday. A lot has changed in the last two years. Have you been keeping up?
Is your brand relevant to your customers? What type of experience are you providing them?
- Your brand creates an emotional connection to them that surpasses the sale.
- Your brand is constantly shared by your customers. In fact, most of your marketing isn’t created by you.
- Your brand is included in your customer’s stories.
What are you doing right now to drive that type of relevance? While everything is upside down due to marketplace turbulence, now is the time to reinvent your business and become more relevant than ever.
Or, you could just sit there and wait for the phone to ring.
“Don’t bring your need to the marketplace; bring your skill. If you don’t feel well, tell your doctor, but not the marketplace. if you need money, go to the bank, but not the marketplace.” – Jim Rohn
“In a crowded marketplace, fitting in is a failure. In a busy marketplace, not standing out is the same as being invisible.” – Seth Godin
“The internet is, among other things, a massive, chaotic marketplace. Too much information, it turns out, is like no information.” – Adam Davidson
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Marshall Atkinson also shares exclusive blog content at Supacolor.com. Supacolor makes The World’s Best Heat Transfer and provides tips, inspiration, and other resources designed to empower professional garment printers.