Growing Your Business in 2016: Tips from an Expert
A new year is about to begin and now is the perfect time to start planning for your year of success!
To help you make 2016 a banner year, we’ve asked IAW member and Business Coach Katrina Sawa to share her expert advice and tips for growing a business. After all, she took her own company—a small, local business—and turned it into an international, online success. Read on to learn more about Katrina’s story of professional perseverance, her belief in the importance of networking and the steps you can take to grow your business in 2016!
Known as The JumpStart Your Biz Coach, Katrina, a native of Northern California, founded her company 13 years ago. Working with highly motivated women entrepreneurs (along with some men), she “literally kicks her clients and their businesses into high gear.” Katrina offers in-person and virtual coaching techniques and strategies, and her goal is to help clients grow their companies, make more money and have more free time to enjoy their success.
An entrepreneur at heart, Katrina started her professional career working at a local newspaper selling advertising to small business owners. When she realized she was spending most of her time coaching her clients about what they could do to optimize their businesses, she decided to strike out on her own.
“I would have to help them create and place ads and many knew nothing about advertising. I would consult with them about what makes good ads; how to maximize their database and create effective call-to-action strategies,” Katrina says. “Many didn’t know what they were doing. This was before the onset of social media and websites. Eventually, I realized I could help small business owners market their businesses so I decided to go into business myself.”
To get the word out about her new business, Katrina immediately started networking and more importantly, followed up after making connections. She is convinced this strategy was the key to her company’s explosive growth in the first three years. “Networking and then following up is what got me to be so successful,” she says. “Most people think you network just once or twice a month. I was attending 14 events a month and followed up with each and every single person I met.”
In addition to networking, Katrina also believes in the power of public speaking. “Networking and speaking are the fastest way to cash!” Katrina says. “When you speak to a crowd, you’re reaching a lot of people at once and you build your credibility. Exhibiting your product and services is also key.”
Katrina is also the author of Love Yourself Successful. The book includes tips for women who want to take charge of their personal and professional lives. Katrina believes writing her book has enhanced her own professional reputation. “The best thing I’ve done is be an author. It lends such credibility,” she says.
“Most new business owners and entrepreneurs are overwhelmed. There’s a lot to do, a lot to learn to become successful: websites, social media, building data base, accepting online payments, ebooks,” says Katrina. “I step in and see the holes and opportunities. I see the holes, what is missing, what they need to do to be more effective and I see opportunities, new things that they may not see. I love what I do. I get to tell people what to do all day long!”
Although some business owners don’t think they need any help from a Coach, Katrina suggests they think of it as getting “educated.” Just as a nurse or lawyer needs to learn their jobs, she says, so do entrepreneurs; they need to be schooled in running their business. Katrina’s advice when looking for a Business Coach: Be sure to learn from someone who is making money themselves! “Look for a Business Coach who offers one-on-one services, not only virtual support. That’s very important,” she adds. “And he or she should be well-rounded. I think of myself as an ‘A-to-Z’ kind of gal. I continually invest in myself. I’ve spent tens of thousands on my own business coaching.”