Do you believe? There are no compromises on this one. You need to believe in yourself if you want to be successful in your Dog Walking Company – after all if you don’t believe in your business, neither will your customers? When planning your business, make sure you include some milestones to celebrate your success, small and big – a milestone for getting your first customer might be to treat yourself to that new CD you want, or when you get your tenth customer treat your partner to a nice meal out. Planning and reaching these ‘milestones’ will reinforce your self- belief on a regular basis.
Stand out from the crowd
Being unique and original is the best way to stand out from the competition, you don’t need to be completely ‘off the wall’ but you do need to do something that helps you stand out and is in keeping with your brand. Can you offer a service that none of the competition offer? Can you offer extra added services (example: free obedience reinforcement)? Is yours simply the greatest website, that knocks the completion into a cocked hat! Stand out from the crowd.
While it is always important to have short and long term goals as part of your overall business plan, and a strategy in place to reach them, it is also important to be flexible, particularly with your strategy. This means listening to your clients (and prospective clients). Let’s say for example that you offer a variety of different services within your Dog Walking Company, such as group walks, solo walks, kenneling, doggie day care, jogging dogs, small animal sitting, etc. etc. all with different price bands. Now you might think, yes with all these services I can ensure different income streams coming into my business and at the same time offer a whatever my clients might require. This might be true, but what also might equally be true is that some clients (especially those visiting your website who might be overwhelmed by the choices and differing payment plans) could skip off to the completion, where the pricing and services are simpler. At the end of the day you need to work your plan, but be prepared to change to reach your goals – especially if your customers are telling you to.
Test what works and what doesn’t
If you have come across the 80/20 rule before—also known as the Pareto principle—you might know that 80 % of the results come from 20% of your actions. This principle applies to your Dog Walking Company. So to balance out the time you spend promoting your business, you need to test what works well in promoting your business in your local area. For example: You might get 4 new customers from forging relationships with your local vets, but only 1 new customer from the large leaflet drop you did. The relationship building maybe only took up 20% of the time you have been using for promotion, but you got 4 new customers! Monitoring how and what you do with your time and the result you achieve from it will stop you wasting both time and money. Concentrate on the 20% of promotion that gets you 80% of your customers. So in this example concentrate on building relationships with your local vets.