What to do when business slows down

Freelancers know the "feast or famine cycle": all the work seems to come at once, then nothing comes for a while. Other businesses are seasonal. How to avoid a dry spell.

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What to do when business slows down



In this podcast I talk about what to do when things seem to be slow in your business: for many industries, the summer is a quieter time, when people are on holiday and everything seems to be on hold. But for a small business owner, a dry spell can mean a lot of stress and worry. So how do you prepare for a business lull, and how can you either avoid it or harness it?


Where have all the clients gone?!


I set up my business in September. All was going well until around late June, early July, when I realised that appointments had dried up. What was happening? I was very near to panic as I looked in my diary and saw a long stretch of blank pages... 

When it happened again the next year, I realised it was a yearly pattern of ebb and flow: nothing to worry about, and the clients would be back in September.


But I still had bills to pay...


That's the problem with a quieter spell: if you're a small business or you've only just started, it can mean difficult times ahead. So it's essential to set up business systems to know your baseline, know your sales cycle and your sales target, and take action when the numbers are not quite what they should be.


Erase it or harness it


By making time in your schedule for marketing, you'll ensure a steady pipeline of work: you don't have to resign yourself to the "feast or famine" cycle. And on the other hand, if your industry or business is in fact seasonal, you can take advantage of that quieter time to work on your business and focus on other strategic activities that will set you up for even bigger future success.


In fact, by implementing all the strategies I recommend in the podcast, I transformed the summer into one of the busier periods of my business year!




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Resources mentioned:

Marketing is an activity that's both important and urgent - how can you make time for it?

A great free tool for to-do lists and to keep ideas in one place: Trello

Quiet time can be a "Reality" or an "Opportunity": the GROW model

I offer a comprehensive marketing framework in Chapters 14 and 15 of my book The Savvy Guide To Making More Money

I'd love to hear your feedback by email email or on twitterTwitter

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