Starting a new business can be a difficult endeavor, no matter the industry or circumstances. The Alternative Board (TAB) recently polled hundreds of entrepreneurs who started a new business to learn what they would have done differently, if they had the chance to do it all over again.
There were a few common areas that most participants wish they had spent more time, resources, and money on: Strategic Planning, Sales, and Marketing. 27% of owners wish they would have spent more time on strategic planning, with 20% and 18% also mentioning sales and marketing, respectively. Along those same lines, 15% wish they had spent more money on strategic planning, versus 18% and 17% for marketing and sales.
“What do you wish you had done earlier in your business?”
This was another question that was asked of the study participants. These answers highlight a need, again, for better planning and marketing strategies. The most common answers were:
- 35% mentioned creating a system/plan to generate more leads
- 20% recommended to form an expert network for advice
- 10% highlighted the importance of maintaining a detailed customer database and evaluating consumer demand for products and services
- 9% said investing in measurable advertising was important
Besides the infographic below stating these and other interesting findings from the study:
Missing from findings were strategies for generating independent reviews or visibility in trusted publications, though marketing in general, was a top priority that business owners would reconsider in hindsight. The Alternative Board released a separate study on the occurrence of customers to trust independent reviews when looking for B2B vendors, which we covered in December 2014.
infographic via TAB.