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Small Businesses Vs. Big Companies

Stocks in this article: BP FDX

When you are launching a new company or struggling to keep a small company afloat, it's easy to forget the simple truth that all big, successful companies started out small - just like you.

Good business is good business, so even though you may have only a handful of employees and an almost non-existent marketing budget, you can learn from a much larger company's experiences. Here are five lessons small businesses can learn from their larger counterparts.

Five lessons small businesses Can Learn from Big Companies

Stay Relevant

Why do certain companies have all the new bells and whistles and still go belly up while other companies have been around for a half century or more and are still chugging along? One of the reasons is that longevity in the business world has a lot to do with keeping fresh.

Successful companies stay on top of new trends and are quick to adapt to them without sacrificing quality. Large companies are willing to take a risk; whereas smaller companies often stay stuck in their ways. Businesses that make it long-term will change and evolve to meet their customers' needs.

Let's look at Old Spice, for example. The male grooming product line has been around since the Depression. The Procter & Gamble Company (PG) acquired the line in 1990 from Shulton, Inc., its original producer. The very first Old Spice product was introduced in 1937 and was created for women. Old Spice for men followed in 1938.

So how did a line of men’s products dominated by aftershave lotion and shaving soap that was marketed with sailing ship motifs get to be something that today's young men clamor to purchase?

The answer is that the company found a way to both maintain itself and reinvent itself at the same time. Old Spice has embraced its history with its "classic" shower gel that is sold under the slogan “The original. If your grandfather hadn’t worn it, you wouldn’t exist." And it has repositioned itself with savvy packaging and marketing that includes everything from viral video campaigns, to NASCAR and NFL spokesmen Remember Isaiah Mustafa telling women to “Look at your man, now back at me", to new slogans aimed at young men such as “Believe In Your Smelf.”

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