Jun 18, 2021
Every business experiences slow periods when the market for their goods or services lessens and sales drop. Construction business owners like you might be tempted to view downtimes as unproductive or wasted, but there are ways you can make the most of your business during these seasons.
Here are five ways to ensure this time isn't wasted:
1. Take a good look at your business
When things are busy, it gets easy to fall into a habit of taking care of day-to-day tasks and forgetting your overall business picture. However, slower times are an excellent opportunity to step back from the daily grind and ask yourself if your business is still moving towards its goals, what opportunities or challenges are on the horizon, and whether it's time to try something new.
Examine various aspects of your construction business, such as your marketing and sales, to see if they're all working together or if they need revising. Is your social media account information still accurate? Do you have unanswered emails to respond to? When was the last time you posted on your blog? Should your website be updated?
This is a great time to take care of those tasks that have been put off for far too long.
2. Get bold with your marketing
When business is booming, entrepreneurs often prioritize tasks directly related to profits, and other activities—such as marketing—take a back seat. Rather than using downtimes to catch up, use them for experimenting with new tactics. Have you tried creating marketing videos or used Instagram Live? Have you sent out direct mail?
Write a blog and social media posts ahead of time. Strategize your next marketing campaign and commit to posting on social media every day. If you have time, build up a backlog of posts to have pre-written content when things get busy again.
You can also use this time to learn tactics and tricks you may not fully understand. For example, if you like writing your marketing materials but don't understand search engine optimization (SEO) or Google Analytics, this is an opportune time to learn about them. Again, professional development now can help you in the future.
3. Implement new policies and procedures
If you want to make changes in your business, slower times are often a great opportunity to try them. That way, you have the chance to review the modifications and whether they work well for you before they cause a massive headache.
Are you considering a new web hosting service? Are you looking to automate some client-facing activities? Make these changes during a slow period to get a good feel for how well they work. At least then you can address challenges that arise before things get busy and you're left dealing with many upset customers.
4. Harness the power of learning
Knowledge leads to profits and cash flow. What makes knowledge powerful? Use of knowledge. In this cutthroat construction industry, you may not be able to outgrow your competition forever, but you can always outlearn them.
Gain insight from a free consultation with me or enroll in one of our Construction Accounting Academy courses. Master the skills needed to generate useful reports, repeat quality performances, and make informed decisions to operate and grow your construction company. Click here for the list of classes.
5. Connect with your community
Quieter periods are a perfect time to get more involved with your community and do some good. Find a local organization that you care about—or related to your business's work—and partner with them. For example, you could sponsor an event or a seminar or even run a fundraising drive.
Not only will you have something to talk about on your social media, but you'll also engage customers that care about purchasing from companies that do good. These days, that's important to many consumers. According to Forbes, 88% of consumers will be more loyal to a company that supports social or environmental issues, and 87% will have a more positive image of a company that supports social or environmental issues.
Remember that business won't always be slow, so don't panic when things get quiet. Instead, take the opportunity to reflect on your business, make necessary changes, try new marketing tactics, advance through learning, and connect with your community. Doing so can help you make the most of your downtime so your construction business can rebound more effectively.
About The Author:
Sharie DeHart, QPA, is the co-founder of Business Consulting And Accounting in Lynnwood, Washington. She is the leading expert in managing outsourced construction bookkeeping and accounting services companies and cash management accounting for small construction companies across the USA. She encourages Contractors and Construction Company Owners to stay current on their tax obligations and offers insights on how to manage the remaining cash flow to operate and grow their construction company sales and profits so they can put more money in the bank. Call 1-800-361-1770 or email@example.com