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Your products and services can become dated. As a business owner, you must recognize changing markets.
Turning loose yesterday's products and services can be traumatic. But, if what you sold yesterday isn't selling today, what about tomorrow?
Example: Ed used his CPA training to help clients with tax filings. For years, his business grew by adding new referrals. His clients were very small businesses--owner operated or with few employees. Then he began noticing a slow-down in calls from new clients. Ed recognized that more and more small business owners were signing up with tax firms offering online tax preparation. He could not compete with these. So, Ed began targeting the next level of small businesses--those with 25-50 employees. This market had more complicated tax liabilities. Owners appreciated--and paid for--his personal attention and advice.
Example: In the past years when videos ruled the entertainment world, Gene established a local video shop. Business was good as people showed up to rent videos. But fast-moving technology soon overtook the market for people who came to Gene's video shop. When he realized that the future held fewer prospects, he sold the shop.
Example: Jack runs a machine shop. His main clients are in the aerospace, automotive, and health care fields. When 3D printing burst upon the scene, Jack saw a different future for his business. He installed one of the new 3D machines and hired a programmer. From this modest expansion, Jack has expanded into 3D printing full speed ahead. Today, more and more of his market is satisfied with 3D printed products. Technological changes are revolutionizing Jack's industry.
Example: Anna runs a cafe. Her breakfasts and lunches attracted lots of attention with her traditional hearty fare. When customers began asking about locally-sourced eggs and breads, Anna took note. Her market was changing. Today, she serves meals made with organically-produced inputs, gluten-free breads, soups made the same day, along with coffee freshly roasted at a local supplier. Her cafe is attracting more and more people--especially since she began promoting her place on social media.
Markets no longer exist for buggy whips. Get rid of them. Move on. Turn loose your yesterdays as the market moves ahead.