How to Invite the World to Build your Business?

How to invite the world to build your business?

I recently read a story about how WordPress became so successful because of it's open-source concept. WordPress wasn't the first blogging software to arrive in the market but it quickly became the #1 choice of bloggers because of the plugins, themes and widgets available through it. How did they do it? They invited the world to help them build and grow WordPress. They turned WordPress into an open-source software so that anyone who knew how to code, build plugins, widgets and themes could contribute to it.

WordPress wasn't the first company to open their software to the world and won't be the last. But, my questions after reading the article were, are there other businesses outside of the technology/software space using this concept? Could this concept be applied to mom-and-pop stores? What about small consulting practices? How can they do it? How can a small business with limited resources invite the entire world to build its business?

Idea # 1:  Build an "Idea" forum / site.

How it works:
Build an "Idea" forum / site where people can suggest ideas for your business. The ideas can include a new product/service idea, lead generation idea, marketing idea, customer service idea, anything really.

Tell everybody you know (customers who walks through your door, Facebook fans, Twitter followers, email subscribers, friends, family, anybody else) about your idea blog and how they can contribute to it. Evaluate each idea that comes in and use the ones that you can to grow your business. You might even find great ideas that don't apply to your business currently. Store them for future use.

Starbucks did this a few years ago. They build a site called "My Starbucks Idea" and received thousands of great ideas that they could use.

Idea # 2:  Turn haters into heroes.

How it works:
When a customer gives you negative feedback on a public platform, smile. Acknowledge your mistake and fix it. Once fixed, invite the customer back for another experience and give them a world-class service. They will love you to death, not because you turned things around but because you listened to their input and considered it valuable.

Next, turn that customer into a "hero that helped your business". Write a great blog post, create a YouTube video, share the story with the media by telling how that customer helped you fix the mistake. Make the customer a hero. You will be surprised to find how many other customers will come to you with new ideas or send new business that will take your business to the next level.

Idea # 3:  Build a social media campaign and give discounts for "Collective effort"

How it works:
Create a social media campaign and say if you get X number of likes / shares / tweets / re-tweets, etc. then you will give away a Y% of discount. Tell everyone you know about this campaign and let people share it with their friends and families. It could work something like this:

1,000 New likes = 10% discount.
2,000 New likes = 20% discount.
3,000 New likes = 30% discount.

It is important that you set a time limit as to when the campaign ends and Likes after your selected time limit will not be counted. Announce the results, and send everyone who liked the page a "special discount code" to use with their next purchase.

I hope these ideas help you growing your business and help you invite the world to build your business.

Do you have any ideas for small businesses to grow their business? Or, have you seen a small business execute a phenomenal idea? If so, please share them with others. Growth happens at exponential speed when people decide to help people unselfishly.

Growth happens at exponential speed when people decide to help people unselfishly.

Thank You,

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1 comment:

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