Running a small or specialist business can have its pros and cons. On one hand, offering a niche service can offer you a monopoly on the market. On the other hand, not being able to win new contracts to sustain the business could land you in hot water.

Small business often find that they are restricted by resources and budget, and many find themselves stretched thin with the general day to day running of the company. This can mean that prioritising sales can quickly fall to the bottom of the to do list, especially if you’re not a natural salesperson and don’t know where to begin. However, when it really boils down, if you’re not promoting yourselves and nobody knows about your services, you could be faced with a bleak future.   

Luckily for you, help is at hand, and we’ve put together a list of tried and tested top tips, to help you get on track, win new business, and to help keep the wolves from the door.

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Identify potential clients and find out how to get on their supply chain

Although this might seem obvious, without having a clear idea of who you want to work with could lead to a lot of miss directed efforts and a less than fruitful yield.

Start by making a list of the top 20 companies you want to work for, and then do some research into their tender process. Sometimes it can be as simple as applying via their website to be added to their supply chain. If there isn’t an option on their website, try reaching out to them via social media. If all else fails, pick up the phone. It might seem taxing at the time, but it’s guaranteed to put you under the radar of the buyers and opens up opportunities to tender and win new jobs.

Do you have relevant industry accreditation?

Although these aren’t essential, being able to prove that you can meet strict industry standards and work to a high level helps prove your credibility.

Networking events

Although this might seem daunting, getting to know other business owners in the trade is a great way to build rapport and trust. It’s also great for recommendations and is far more effective than receiving a cold email.

Avoid going in with a hard-edged salesy approach, and show a genuine interest. Ask questions about their business requirements and offer solutions.

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Tap into your local resources

Take a deep dive into public sector contracts using this handy Contract Finder tool and you could find yourself coming up trumps. With a multitude of regularly updated tender directories up for grabs, it’s a great way to win new business and keep up to date with local developments.

Take advantage of your borough benefits by reading up on section 106. This government initiative between Local Authorities and developers will favour local suppliers. Register for their online portal for additional pricing opportunities.  

Do you have an online presence and is it up to scratch?

There’s no denying that we are living in a digital age, and having a digital presence is crucial to the success of any business. If like the joinery, you have previously relied on repeat business or recommendations, you might find that you are limiting your potential, and stunting the growth of the business. So get online and tap into a larger network.

Having a low-quality website that doesn’t represent the company well can have an equally as negative effect as not having a website at all. So try to look at your website or digital platforms objectively and try to think about the message that you’re trying to convey. What makes your business unique, what are your values and company ethos?

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Invest in marketing

If you don’t know how to do this yourself or simply don’t have the time, get a professional in. Having someone who can set up your accounts efficiently and get the maximum results is a no-brainer, and will save you time trying to learn the ropes yourself.

By investing in marketing you can start to build your brand and audience, tell your story and create trust.

Prove the quality of your work with case studies and testimonials

A great way to create trust is by telling your potential client base about the work that you have done. Take this one step further ask your client for a short testimonial. Having these touch points will get your audience a clear idea of the quality of your work and will help them visualise what you can do for them.

We hope that you have found this guide useful, but if you have any questions or would like to discuss your joinery requirements with us, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

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