Ann Marie Puig


Ann Marie Puig offers proven strategies that help a business grow

The expansion of companies is not a question of increasing profits. It is necessary to survive a competitive market. Studies show that approximately 66% of companies exceed two years of operation, while 50% reach the five-year mark. These metrics remain consistent across most industries, emphasizing the importance of business growth, regardless of the market a company is in. Business growth strategies set long-term goals and determine how a company plans to achieve them. Whether you expand store locations, customer reach or product lines, implementing a growth strategy puts a plan into action, increasing scalability and profits. Ann Marie Puig, a successful entrepreneur and philanthropist from Costa Rica, provides insight into proven strategies that will help any business grow.

Companies that have reached a plateau should start planning how to promote expansion and profitability. “Successful growth strategies must be able to rapidly accelerate expansion in a sustainable manner, ensuring the longevity of the organization,” asserts Puig. When developing their growth strategy, companies should take into account market penetration, which is used to increase market share or exposure of a new product line.

Common strategies include advertising, product grouping, exclusive discounts on large order volumes, and competitive pricing. While lowering prices may seem anti-intuitive, it is useful for meeting the company’s short-term expansion goals. For example, a business that is launching a new product line similar to surrounding competitors can reduce the retail cost to attract customers, increase sales, and create a customer base. However, if these efforts cannot improve an item’s market share, a company can pair it with a popular product as a courtesy accessory. Once the item gets enough recognition, it can be separated and sold at full price.

Market development is another consideration. These strategies aim to promote existing product or service lines to new buyers or customers in a different location. Companies should consider launching a marketing development strategy if the market has recently become saturated with similar products or if it has become a challenge to attract new consumers. Even popular products are bound to experience a decline in sales and profits eventually unless the company can successfully expand into different markets. For example, Nike was able to increase its customer reach and generate revenue by expanding into international markets. However, small businesses that don’t have the budget to launch growth bells may still be able to drive sales by marketing the same products in a unique way. For example, a restaurant may promote signature dishes through private catering or local grocery stores. This gives the company the opportunity to play with product packaging and discover new customers.

Alternative sales channels should be explored, too. “Venturing out and using alternative sales channels is one of the most effective growth strategies,” explains Puig. “While many businesses already use multiple online marketplaces, it may be worth looking into a completely different marketing platform. Email marketing, social media and business websites are the top three marketing channels available.”

While only 64% of small businesses have their own website, most customers expect to see an organization’s website to research product lines. Email and social media are free tools that allow businesses to create personalized content and connect directly with consumers. These are great options for startups that don’t yet have the funds to launch their online store. Research shows that offering an online and offline presence optimizes company growth. Therefore, companies should consider launching ads through social media, google and email, as well as traditional guerrilla marketing, to increase exposure.

By adding new features or accessories to an existing product line, companies can promote sales and expansion in an established market. If an item continues to underperform even with new extensions, it’s time to gradually step out of line and introduce newer versions. However, it is vital to research the market demand and value of the new product line before launching it to avoid making a poor investment.

Companies should consider partnering with another company that also focuses on expansion. Through mergers, acquisitions and partnerships, establishing a symbiotic relationship will benefit both parties involved and increase the resources of companies. Depending on the agreement, resources could include labor, business intelligence, equipment, and analytics. By expanding the number of resources available, companies can significantly reduce their workloads and the business risks involved in growth companies. Partners can also share customers and collaborate on different expansion projects, such as marketing campaigns.

Discovering which growth strategy is right for their business allows owners to invest in expansion efforts that promote long-term profitability. It also allows companies to explore new markets and establish a presence on various platforms.