|| Print ||
|Friday, May 15, 2009|
So, what’s working for your business? It’s not an insignificant question, that’s for sure. With Oregon unemployment the second highest in the nation, finding and keeping customers is harder than ever.
Go to any retail area around Portland, or a main street in any rural community in Eastern Oregon and all of the “for rent” signs are potent reminders of those small businesses that never did figure out the answer to the question posed above.
For many businesses the answer is discounting. I know that's true for mine. I am in the business of selling content, and whether it is an article, a webinar, a speech or whatever, we are not commanding, nor are we asking for the sorts of prices we got even a year ago. And it’s working.
Of course, discounting your prices is a strategy that must be undertaken carefully. Cut too much and it could kill your brand or cannibalize your other offerings. But that said, it is equally true that right now it’s a buyer’s market out there.
Another thing that often works for small businesses in an economy like this is increased marketing, as counter-intuitive as that may sound. Because customers are in fact looking for a bargain these days, especially here in Oregon, loyalty is rare. So you need to keep getting new customers to replace those that are going to leave, and you also need to nab some of those who are looking for greener pastures.
Increased marketing allows you to do both of those things.
And it need not cost a fortune. Whether it is increased Internet marketing or a discount coupon, shoestring marketing works.
So what’s working for you?
Steve Strauss is the small business columnist for Oregon Business.
|Bike Chic: 7 stylish options for cyclists|
|Beam Me Up|
|Get on the bus!|
|Emperor of the Sea|
|Epitaph for a Boondoggle|
|WikiLeaks allows visitors to search database of hacked Sony documents|
|VW recalls minivans with Chrysler-made ignitions|
|Netflix adds subscribers at record pace|
|EU charges Google with antitrust claims|
|Tech industry urges Congress for protection on patents|
|Is your job the best?|
|Value of college degree increasing|
A new report highlights how Oregon bankers are giving back to their communities.
Since 1932 Tidewater Transportation & Terminals (operating as Tidewater Barge Lines and Tidewater Terminal Company) has operated a multicommodity transportation and terminal company based in Vancouver, Washington. The friendly expression on the company’s shipping containers reflects the attitude of about 330 safety and community-conscious employees but belies how complicated the barge business really is.
The Port of The Dalles has run marine facilities since the 1930s, but they are part of a larger mission to strengthen the local economy. They focus on regional economic development with a strong bent toward adding good-paying jobs in high tech, manufacturing and other industries.
Providing attendees with unique taste of the Northwest Reception.
CFM Strategic Communications turns 25 this year and is celebrating with a revamped website, special events for firm alumni and clients, a special-label wine and a list of 25 stories about its client work over the past quarter century.
The Atkinson Graduate School of Management at Willamette University has maintained its business accreditation by AACSB International—The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.