Breaking the Feast & Famine cycle

Do you remember the story of how Joseph interpreted the Pharoah’s dream (either from the Bible or the Lloyd Webber musical)? He accurately predicted 7 years of good harvests, followed by 7 years of famine.
Even today, most small and medium sized businesses seem to be trapped in a repeating cycle of good times followed by hard times. The cycle length and severity may change, but it seems to be almost a fact of life that periods of strong sales are followed by tougher times. Whilst this may not be as severe as the biblical example, it certainly brings some significant challenges.
How and why does it happen and why does it persist?
Sometimes it can be down to seasonality in the marketplace, but often it is self-generated. Typically, when a business achieves sales success that generates an internal pressure to deliver more products or services to customers. In a small business where many staff from the owner / MD down may have a broad role, they get drawn in to helping to satisfy the increased demand, at the expense of their other responsibilities.
Often the ‘lower priority’ activities that are sacrificed are related to sales and/or marketing, sometimes with the excuse that “we don’t need any more sales at the moment”. In practice this means that the sales pipeline isn’t being re-filled and when the surge in demand has been satisfied, sales dry up again. This can cause a panic reaction where the business chases sales, creating another surge in demand and the cycle starts again. Even worse, there are potential cost penalties incurred in meeting the peaks in demand and discounts offered to create the next peak, so profitability can be eroded over time.
So how can a business break the cycle? Joseph advised Pharoah to build reserves in the good times, to see them through the famine, and whilst that worked once, it’s more a way to survive than a long term fix.
To really break the cycle, you need a sales and marketing process that is proven, measurable and as automated as possible. It does require some hard work to set it up, but once built it shouldn’t need high maintenance, freeing up people to respond to surges in demand. Our Sales Generator programmes are designed to require only minimal attention and can even be ‘turned up’ (or down) to boost demand in quiet periods and balance out more of the sales peaks and troughs.
if you would like to find out more about Sales Generator or just have a friendly chat about any sales or marketing challenges in your business, please give me a call.