Understanding your customer spending

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The latest data by McKinsey & Company shows that Kiwis still feel the economic effects of the pandemic and are cautious about spending, despite retail spending bouncing back sharply when the country got out of lockdown.

Acknowledging the general cost-consciousness, at BGS, we’ve advised our clients to repackage their products to make it easier for customers to purchase. At the moment, people are still hesitant to commit long-term so instead of offering month-long subscriptions, repackage your product for one-off offers – this is one example of using available data to shape your marketing strategy.

As smaller businesses, tracking your targets’ behaviour and sentiments is critical – those that can adapt will thrive in this quickly-changing market.

keat ngUnderstanding your customer spending
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Success: Solid Plan, Leadership, Action & Accountability

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There is no straightforward path to success. Let me just put that out there right away. It is a winding road, and most of the times you don’t see where you are heading. In my years of being a smaller business consultant helping many small businesses grow, I have lived by an effective formula for success. Success is a total of four things: a solid plan, leadership, action, and accountability.

A Solid Plan

A solid plan is the structure of any successful business. To come up with a solid plan, you need to look through every detail and imagine every possible scenario that may happen to your smaller business. And come up with measures for each! It helps to be knowledgeable about the five aspects of a business. 

A solid plan helps in making your business flexible and resilient to changes. By looking at all the details, you get to create clear and tangible goals. You know what’s your plan of attack to achieve these goals. And with clear direction, it’s easier for your employees to see the importance of achieving these goals. 

The takeaway here is to be ready for the future – creating a solid plan is preparing your small business for success.


“By failing to prepare, you prepare to fail”. – Benjamin Franklin



As a smaller business owner, you are the master of your ship. Everything starts with you. The way your business is running is a reflection of your leadership skills. 

A good leader is collaborative. Communication is open. There’s always a steady flow of honest feedback and ideas between you and your employees. An open communication facilitates mutual understanding and ensures that you’re in the same boat. This way, employees know how they are supporting the business and how vital their roles are. 

Open communication fosters a culture of shared trust which develops accountability and excellent performance. 

Effective leaders know The team’s real motivation. Why do we want to do what we do? It also requires you to be mindful of your strengths and weaknesses. Doing so will help you hire a well-rounded group of people. 


You can only achieve your desired outcome when you commit to act on your plan. Taking action relies on discipline and being effective. All of this is a level of honesty with self, if you look yourself in your heart of hearts you will  

Self-discipline is a product of being prepared. When we create routine and productive habits, it gives us direction and prepares us for the predictable and unexpected. For example, if you have a habit of self-check-in in the morning and evaluation at the end of the day, it helps give your day structure. Having a direction for your day gives you a clear picture of how things will go and when you can address unexpected roadblocks. A clear direction and general sense of preparedness prevent procrastination.

Self-efficacy, on the other hand, is influenced by self-discipline and mentality; Self-discipline to stick to your course of action and belief in your capacity for success. Focus on approaching challenges as something you can master. Be aware of your capacity yet recognize the things that you can improve on. Acknowledging that you can always learn something new opens you to more opportunities to succeed. 


Accountability is following through with your commitments. It’s the difference between achieving your goals and just dreaming about them until you die. What can I do? How can I make things better? Thus accountability allows you to produce higher quality results and boosts productivity as well. 

As a leader, the culture of accountability in your business starts with you. Following through with commitments shows reliability and fosters trust. When leaders trust their employees, the employees want to live up to this trust. As a leader, you have to demand accountability from your employees. You set clear expectations, make sure that there’s a mutual understanding of these expectations, active follow-through, and support in achieving these commitments. 

In my experience, most smaller business owners (humans) need someone who keeps them taking the actions they need take to achieve success. The bulk of what I do as a consultant is to make business owners accountable. Joining mastermind groups is a powerful option for this. You will be making and sharing plans with your group and reporting back on your progress, this way, you will not be tempted to defer taking action and jump back into reacting to your business. 

Success boils down to consistent and committed action on your goals. It’s about recognizing your strengths and weaknesses, asking help when it’s needed, and realizing that you can never succeed alone. 

Kevin SatoSuccess: Solid Plan, Leadership, Action & Accountability
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Marketing Spend: How to Attract More People with Less Money

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With the pandemic affecting economics globally, is it worth marketing at this time, is it wise to spend on marketing right now? Truthfully, yes. But it requires a different approach; this is when strategic marketing is most important. Strategic marketing, in a nutshell, is coming up with a plan that focuses on long-term goals and executing an effective strategy to reach these goals. Strategic marketing is a focused and very targeted marketing activity, that attracts more of the people you want for less advertising spend. How do you do this?

Focus on the long-term goals and remember the heart of your brand. While your customers’ needs are the forefront in what guides you to set your goals, the core values of your brand keep you true to your business identity. Long-term goals can be the growth of your business, experimenting on a diverse demographic, or even the creation of an additional business or value proposition. Focusing on these long-term goals requires you to do marketing in a very strategic way, the customers you target have a significant impact on the direction of your business in the long term. 

Understand your customer’s demographics and behaviour. Knowing your target market guides you in determining your customers’ needs. In turn, you align your goals with catering to these needs. Fulfilling the needs of your customers as your goal will then become your marketing strategy.

Look for opportunities. Recognizing the possibilities in your industry and using these opportunities to your advantage is a reliable way to stay relevant. Filling these gaps shows your benefits; this sets you apart from your competitors and adds value to your customers

The essence of strategic marketing is coming up and executing a well-defined plan. Tactics are the actions that take you towards achieving long-term goals for your business. It’s having an awareness of industry trends and setting yourself apart from your competitors by highlighting the value you provide to your customers and therefore attracting more of them. 

I have been consulting one on one in strategic business management for the last 6 years and have spent over 25 years in various smaller businesses myself. Since lockdown, I have been applying my own technology to my company Business Growth Stratagem Ltd and we re-modelled our businesses and created a whole new value proposition.

Kevin SatoMarketing Spend: How to Attract More People with Less Money
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