Ask any food or beverage company what their growth goal is, and I'll bet it says "increase sales."
By Catherine Sayer, CEO of Food South Australia.
Most companies first try to increase sales by selling more of what they already make to customers they already have. However, doing this isn't the only way to grow your business, and it may not be the best way to protect it from an event that can disrupt your traditional business – like a pandemic.
Revenue growth can also be achieved by finding new customers for existing products, creating new products for existing customers, or looking for opportunities to develop business relationships, customer bases and product ranges through potential acquisitions, mergers and joint ventures.
Over the past 10 years, we've refined our growth support programs and services to get to the point and focus on the actionable strategies that match each company's specific priorities, resources and growth goals.
With this new online tool, the Sales Growth Navigator, companies need to better understand where the potential growth options are for their specific business. This is done online and takes about an hour. It helps these companies understand the potential of other revenue growth strategies to spread the risk so that Covid-19 has less chance of getting you off the map.
Although the development of the Sales Growth Navigator coincided with Covid-19, the idea of creating an online tool preceded this shift. This is because we've seen for a number of years that the intent and desire to educate yourself is strong across the food and beverage industry, but time is really of the essence and it may be time to find time to Stepping back from day to day and focusing on strategy is a big challenge.
Covid-19 has shown us all that “moving on” is a far riskier strategy than we could ever have believed. It also showed us how fast and how far smart companies can move in our industry when the chips are really down.
The key takeaways we see here are: first, to keep your contingency plan up to date, and second, to be ready to change anything if you have to.
The plans you make to deal with a crisis don't have to be perfect, they just have to exist in a basic form so that you have something to work on when the unthinkable happens.
Learning number three from Covid-19 seems to be that it is worth spending some time figuring out how you would react not only to the "normal" disruptions that most contingency plans allow, but also to that what feels like a far-fetched scenario on a global scale too.
Understanding where the actual sales growth potential for your products lies is a good start to figuring out your contingency plans for the unknowns of the long-term future and accelerating growth in the short and medium term.
About Catherine Sayer
Catherine has headed Food South Australia since its inception in 2010 and is passionate about leading the development of the industry's governing body with a focus on industry growth and advocacy. She is also a member and chairman of a number of boards.
About Essen South Australia
Food South Australia is the state's umbrella organization for the food and beverage industry committed to supporting and sustaining the industry in the state by helping companies of all sizes develop their markets, capabilities and industry connections. Food South Australia is independent, industry driven and membership focused.