One of the most common facts that we often see about new businesses is that almost half of them fail within the first 3 years and of those who survive these years, a further third of them will fail before the 5 year mark. It is for this reason why those businesses who have survived past the 5 year mark should serve as benchmarks for any new business owner. A good friend of mind Tatiana Kukanova Regan has just reached her 7th year in business and she is just about to open her 3rd store. I asked Tatiana what advice she would give to new business owners who hope to survive those perilous first years.
Tatiana Kukanova Regan specialized in marketing in college so it was no surprise when she decided to invest some of her money in marketing when she first opened up. At the time she confesses that she really didn’t have very much money in the business and that this investment was certainly a risky one. When she opened up her high street store another business opened around the same time and although Tatiana says that she thought they had a great store, they failed to invest in marketing. That other store is now out of business and Tatiana is here opening up a 3rd store. The advice here then is to make sure that you are marketing your business.
There are 2 more stores similar to Tatiana’s that operate within the same locality as her and whilst she knew that her products were better, she wanted to do something else to stand out. For this reason she decided to focus heavily on service and giving her customers the very best experience when they came into her store. The result of this has been glowing reviews across the internet about how amazing the service is in her stores and how much clients love to shop there for this reason alone. That outstanding customer service that she and her staff offer is what has earned them a great reputation and it is why more people now know how great the products are.
Quite honestly Tatiana Kukanova Regan speaks about how since her very first day in business she wanted to build relationships with other business owners, something that very few owners actually do. She would team up with similar stores to offer discounts and loyalty schemes and she believes that these partnerships are what helped her to not only get more clients in, but create a strong network of contacts who could help each other out. So many new businesses go into the market place trying to take everyone on but Tatiana did things in reverse and this is something else that she attributes to her early success in the industry.
If you have a new business, perhaps the way in which Tatiana did it could inspire you.