Have you ever noticed a seemingly thriving business suddenly close down and you wondered, what could have gone wrong. Or, worse yet, you watch a thriving business slowly spiral into oblivion after a long and successful run.
The slow spiral can happen for many reasons. A restaurant that changes their menu or changes their supplier of meat can cause damage. Perhaps new owners took over the restaurant and decided to change things up a bit.
Many companies start out with major advertising efforts and support of their communities and industries simply to try and make a name for themselves. Once they build an empire, those efforts tend to slow down. But, you can’t stop completely or you will fade away. Think about big companies like Ford, McDonald’s and Budweiser. Do you ever see their ads go away? All three are the king in their respective fields. You see them sponsoring events all the time. Their products are superb. Their service is superb and most importantly, they maintain, “Top of Mind Awareness” in your head.
In the early 80’s, there was a restaurant in Bakersfield, California known as The Tam O’ Shanter. It was hard to get a reservation there. You had to stand in line to get into the nightclub portion. There were three entrance doors: The dining room, the quiet bar and the nightclub. All areas did a fantastic business and garnered the attention of many national magazines who wrote stories about “The Tam”. Stories that made people drive for miles to eat the best ribeye steaks west of the Mississippi River. Sadly, today, The Tam is a boarded up eyesore.
After a 30-year run, the owner sold it to the owner of a liquor store located next door. The menu was changed, the waitress uniforms were changed and the nightclub portion was closed down. It was so perfect to enjoy a nice dinner and then step into the club and dance the night away. The newer owner falsely believed that since the location had a 30-year history of success that any changes would be accepted by the regular clientele. Sadly, they were not and after a 2-year run, The Tam O’ Shanter would close forever.
Focus on what you do best today and focus on it every day. Never rest on your laurels but instead concentrate on perfecting what you do and maintaining that same level of service at all times. Don’t ever stop marketing your company because your clients of today will eventually grow old and die. You must constantly be building your client base to maintain a constant growth.