It is never too late to diversify. By not doing so, it might eventually become too late, as forward-thinking competitors are more apt to thrive. In my experience, the successful dealers realize that growth in our industry is actually coming from outside of it. Just as other industries evolve and change complexion, so do we. It is important to look around, recognize both the positive and negative influencers in our businesses, and make proper decisions that first allow for survival and ultimately for growth.
Another important way to manage a business in tougher times is to recognize the changes in the environment. What trends in the marketplace exist today that were non-existent before? How is your business positioned to deal with and/or capitalize on them? Make subtle changes to recognize these trends and position your business properly to ensure that you offer enough to service the needs of your customer base. Understand what technology might be available to do this.
Too often I observe customers that are quick to assume the cost of new technology means that it will not work in the context of their business. A good example of this is sublimation. Color has become important in our industry, and sublimation equipment has advanced tremendously and become more affordable. Oftentimes, stretching a bit for new equipment allows growth through new profit centers.
—Eric Priceman, Victory