These days, especially with our current economy and unemployment, many people are deciding to take a leap and open up their own business. Usually these businesses will be a one-man type organization, with the owner wearing the hat of the marketing manager, customer service, salesperson, and any other position that needs to be filled. Unfortunately, there are some customers that feel a bit apprehensive when it comes to dealing with a small business, and the appearance of that can tend to scare them away. So, how can you have a one-person business and still look as though you are a much bigger company without having to hire all sorts of employees? The answer is easier than you think.
When it comes to your business card, and even when you meet prospective customers, don’t just refer to yourself as the owner. While yes, you are the owner, giving yourself another title gives the impression that you have employees that you oversee and that your company is not just a small operation. For example, with my previous business consulting firm, I was the owner as well as the Marketing Director. It gave the impression that I was in charge of the marketing section of my business, while others handle the other aspects.
When it comes to designing your website, or any promotional marketing material, as a small business owner, it is very easy to fall into the habit of always writing “I”. “I will take and process your orders”, or “Give me a call and place your order today”. The use of the term “I” immediately gives away the fact that you are a one person operation, and can turn away potential customers. When designing these marketing materials and your website, you are better to say things like, “Contact our Ordering Department and place your order today”, or “Should you have any questions, feel free to contact our Customer Service Department”. Even if the only person they are going to talk to is you, this gives the impression that you are a bigger and more successful business.
Another suggestion in making your business appear larger is utilizing a phone service or setting up multiple answering machine lines on your current service. When the phone answers, you can set it up so they will receive a greeting message from your company, and then be given the option to ‘press 1’ for customer service, ‘press 2’ to place an order, ‘press 3’ to track an order, ‘press 4’ with any general questions, and the list goes on. A company called Grasshopper is designed exclusively for this idea. It enables you to have a multiple department phone system which gets forwarded to the number of your choice. The idea being that even when you are away from the ‘office’, you can still receive calls to your various departments. The idea of using this concept gives potential customers the idea that you are a huge company instead of the one-room office you really are.
Creating an appearance of being a larger company is really not very difficult to do, and the added benefits that come with it can have you seeing an increase in customers and sales. As a business owner, you know what it is like to wear many different hats throughout the day. Creating these other business departments does nothing more than represent all the different hats you wear and allows your customers to see that you really have every aspect of the business covered.
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