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5 New Year's Resolutions to Kick Business into High Gear in 2019

Operating a small company is one of the trickiest and most fulfilling ways to make a living. As your independent business enters 2019, with lessons learned and new goals on the horizon, it pays to think in specific terms about how you want to expand your operations in the new year. Business growth in 2019 can take many forms, from expanding into new territories to capturing an increased amount of repeat business from loyal customers. The following are five potential resolutions to get your year started off in a productive way.

1. Try Out New Digital Media Types

Showcasing your products online can take a few forms, from setting up a traditional website and blog to partnering with companies and individuals. Entrepreneur contributor Syed Balkhi recommended expanding into "bite-sized" video content, creating short and fun clips that potential customers can enjoy quickly and share. The overhead required to use this tactic can be surprisingly low, with smartphone applications giving you the tools you need to start a video-enabled strategy.

2. Push a Narrow Range of Products

Contributing to Inc., Gene Hammett gave a helpful and potentially counterintuitive directive for small-business owners: While common wisdom may favor introducing a huge range of items and options for customers to choose from, real business growth may come from focusing hard on a few top offerings. Rapidly expanding companies can make their name on these labored-over and perfected products, creating the first wave of loyal customers. By contrast, businesses with a huge selection can leave consumers feeling confused, dissuading them from buying anything.

3. Actively Seek Out Customer Referrals

Your customers are some of the best ambassadors your brand has. Rather than simply assuming shoppers will suggest your products or services to their friends, you can take a direct hand in getting recommendations. Balkhi suggested creating referral incentives to attract new people to your company. Benefits for people who turn their friends and family members into customers are a canny way to give good deals to your current audience and welcome in a new round of first-time buyers.

4. Consider Potential New Audiences

As Hammett noted, organizational leaders can become too caught up on practical considerations such as product offerings and price points when laying out business growth ideas. While these nuts-and-bolts discussions are useful, there is also value in making big-picture projections about new markets to aim for or audiences to serve. Are there segments of the population who could benefit from your company's products? What would it take to shift the perception of your offerings and enter that new market?

5. Upgrade Your Labeling Strategy

The way your products look on shelves plays a major role in determining whether people buy them. Committing to a visual refresh in 2019 could be a momentous decision for your company, especially if it's been a long time since you last updated your labels. Commitment to updated packaging is an absolute must for businesses dealing with new labeling regulations, and a potential source of growth for small companies of all kinds. Lightning Labels can become an expert partner assisting with such an upgrade, and get your 2019 off to a value-packed start.

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