Inflation and Business: How Business Owners Can Triumph

Over time, Nigeria has witnessed a continued devaluation of its naira due to inflation. This has grossly impacted the earning and purchasing capacity of the masses. From fuel subsidy removals to a monolithic economic framework, Nigeria has seen a gradual erosion of savings culture as people have little to no incentive to keep money in the banks due to unfavorable fiscal laws and relatively low savings interest rates.

Needless to say, it is becoming more difficult to build and keep a business afloat, considering present economic realities. Most businesses rely on importing raw materials and semi-finished goods, and with the way the dollar keeps climbing, more naira’s have to chase the few dollars in the market. The average business owner in Nigeria is faced daily with the decision to either spend the barest minimum on overhead costs, incorporate technology, or altogether ditch the whole system and jump ship due to inflation. While we cannot certainly proffer solutions as to how your business should be run in such trying times as we have now, we know that in business, the ‘devil’ is in the details. Thus, here are a few ways you can better set up your business to scale up even faster.

Digital Marketing

The great Henry Ford once said, “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted, and the problem is I do not know which half”.

For most businesspeople looking to boost sales and increase ROIs, this should be very relatable. Faced with the need to downsize operations while still making enough to keep the business afloat, this is not an easy feat. The only option is to improve sales. And this also costs money.

Before the advent of digital marketing, perhaps Ford’s quote would have rung specifically true. However, with current technology, you can track how much your marketing and advertising budget is making for you.

Analytical tools and leveraging data generated from social media and search engine ads for planning and strategy are now major possibilities. How. Does this help the business? In every way possible. With this data, you know what is working in your strategy and what isn’t. You can always pause and reorganize, without having to spend so much. Digital marketing remains a very agile method for getting results and improving sales. Plus, it is not as expensive as traditional marketing, which says a lot, especially during these times of inflation If you are a business owner in this current season, you want to leverage as much of what technology has to offer. After all, it is eventually a game of numbers.

Loans and Partnerships

Indeed, it is commonplace to seek more funding to finance your business operations. Technology might scale up your work and help reduce costs in the long run, however, it is not cheap. Neither is it fuel, nor is it even diversification. This season requires you to be as liquid as possible. Exploring great loan options (not necessarily from the Nigerian banking sector) is imperative to business growth. Low-interest-rate loans are great for businesses in their growth and maturity phases. You already have traction and a good customer base that is ‘bankable’.

Also, for those seeking to break into new markets, looking for critical partnerships with the exact blend of characteristics that can merge well with your business interests is a great example of leverage. Instead of taking the build route, which is both time and capital-intensive, standing on other people’s work while still offering your unique value will not only bring about greater possibilities but also help improve the bottom line. Although dealing with a company from a different parent brand or geographic location can bring complications, it’s essential to proactively explore ways to address these challenges, considering the substantial benefits at stake.

Adopting New Ways of Work

Many Nigerian employers still cling to past practices. Most still believe that remote work is not a very good approach to work. Whether or not remote work is as efficient as it claims to be, is still very debatable. We cannot close our eyes to the benefits and how having your workers stay home while working can affect the baseline, as you can see in this article. Remote work is gradually becoming the new normal, and it is high time businesses in Nigeria start considering how to incorporate this type of work into their businesses in such a way that they thrive.

In the same vein, businesses can also explore volunteering. Many professionals are looking for opportunities to build their experience and exposure. If you run a tech company, using services like SkilledUp Life, a volunteer outsourcing firm with a talent pool across the world, is a great place to start. The system ensures that they are well-vetted, committed individuals who are passionate about their long-term career goals and are willing to put in the work to bring about results.

Doing business, especially in climes like ours, is not for the faint-hearted. It can be something of a balancing act, as you are trying to give out quality while still not going under. Once again, actively searching for ways to bootstrap your business processes by restructuring the current models your business relies on for staffing, relationship management, and marketing is crucial to ensure efficient utilization of scarce resources in addressing critical needs.

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