When the Sacco of which Mary was a member purchased plots for its adherents, Mary approached individually the ones who had no immediate plans of building or selling; and convinced them to lease their plots to her. Some of her friends had ventured successfully into agribusiness and she wanted to try her luck too. After struggling to sell her products for the first few seasons, she decided to contribute at improving the health status of her clients and help them maintain a lifestyle devoid of preventable diseases. By so defining her value proposition (find out how to do that in my article of last week : 3 Areas of Your Business You Need to Evaluate ), she embraced organic farming methods and focused only on clients who asked for organic foodstuff. Thus she differentiated herself from her competitors and found her niche.
Using Mary’s example, let’s look at your product or service, your market and the vehicle you will use to reach your customers.
You know the problem you want to solve and why clients should come to you instead of going to the competition. In short you are clear about your value proposition. Does your product or service connect with your value proposition, just as Mary’s organic products meet the needs of her health conscious customers?
When Mary ventured into the organic food market, she initially served clients from her immediate neighbourhood. However thanks to word of mouth and social media, she soon started getting requests from people living further away. She had to think of and set up a distribution channel and a system that would allow her to serve the new clientele. At the same time she became aware of her limitations at that initial stage of her business. She set boundaries and declined orders from geographical areas that would have strained her resources.Your market is the geographical area you are able to serve. How big is it and what’s the growth potential? Do you see your business growing from your local area to the whole county? To more counties and nationwide? Regionally and internationally? Think big.You may also like:Points to Ponder Before You Start Your Business (1)
Mary takes her organic products to the organic markets and does home deliveries as well. As her business grows she sees herself supplying both in-store and virtual supermarkets that stock organic products.What methods do you use to reach your clients and make your products or services available to them?
Make a bullet points list of the steps you need to take to engage your customers and learn from them. Test your ideas by trying to sell your products or services as quickly as possible. Then adjust your value proposition based on what you learnt from your clients. Yep, it’s not set in stone!
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