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Are you making growth strategy mistakes? If so, you are not alone. Many companies struggle to sift through the generally outdated growth tactics and “hacks” on the Internet to find those growth strategy gems that will help them scale.
If you’re missing the mark with your growth strategy, here are five common growth strategy mistakes, so you can avoid them!
1. Following the trends, all of them
Analyzing the growth strategies of other companies is a wonderful way to get ideas for growing your own business. But just taking someone else’s strategy and applying it to your business? Not so much.
Your business is unique. Even if you’re in the same industry and have a similar product, your specific combination of company values, employee skills, and personality is unlike any other company out there. So why try to copy their growth, marketing or messaging strategies?
Instead, take what you learn and break it down to find out why it works. You will then be in a much better position to decide whether this strategy will work for your business as well.
Related: 6 Essential Components of a Solid Growth Strategy
2. Focusing on the wrong (or none) KPIs
You must have a way to measure performance. KPIs, or key performance indicators, are what you’ll use to do this.
But just having KPIs in place won’t cut it. In fact, you should check them regularly and then act on what they tell you. The KPIs you use should be tied to your strategy, and like the trends we just discussed, not every KPI your competitors are using will be right for you. Choose KPIs that make sense for your strategy and business goals.
3. Ignoring your customers
Growth doesn’t have to come from more features or product improvements. Customer research and CX mapping help you make strategic and impactful decisions. Understanding your customers leads to improvements in messaging and positioning that appeals to your business.
4. Not creating a go-to-market team
Your company probably has several different teams working on marketing, product and engineering, customer experience, and more. You’re missing out on some serious ideas if you’re not bringing these teams together to develop or refine your go-to-market strategy.
Of course, each team has a specific set of responsibilities, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring them together. In fact, bringing these seemingly disparate teams together ensures that everyone is on the same page, working towards the same goal. The marketing team will be able to understand the customer experience from the CX team and know what it takes for the product and engineering teams to release these “simple” product updates.
The result? A team that has a deeper understanding of how the entire company works, a better understanding of how they fit into business operations, and a stronger chance that your company will deliver a scalable and sustainable growth plan.
Related: Building the right growth strategy for your company’s sustainability
5. Constantly trying to reinvent the wheel
Not all growth strategies have to be shiny and new. One of the simplest things you can do is make a list of what worked and what didn’t. Then, do more of what worked and (surprise!) less, if anything, of what didn’t.
It sounds incredibly simplistic, but it works. You don’t need to come up with a 100% new brainstorm every time you make a growth spurt. If you feel the need to do something different, try testing and optimizing things instead of starting from scratch.
And seriously, if something doesn’t work even after you’ve tested and optimized? Let it go. There are too many things you could be doing to drive growth that aren’t trying to make something work when it just won’t.
Whether you are starting a business or expanding an existing business, having a growth strategy is key to the success of your business. But that doesn’t mean you have to set a path and stick to it no matter what.
If you encounter one or more of the growth strategy mistakes I’ve mentioned here, take a minute to regroup. Take a look at what’s going on and make some changes to your strategy before moving on.