Business Mentor: When to consider pivoting

Armando Bartolome

Posted at Apr 01 2023 09:05 AM

Business pivoting happens every day. However, when the pandemic hit us in 2020, it was the only way some companies could get through the challenges it unleashed. So, when is there a need to pivot the business? What strategies do we need to do to make the business pivot successful?

What does business pivot mean?

Business pivot means changing some aspects of the business's core products or services to meet customer demands, shifting the target market to boost sales, or a combination of both.

Making these changes is a strategic move to ensure the company remains viable and profitable. It is not a temporary move but rather done as a long-term strategy, similar to the adjustments made during the Covid-19 lockdowns.

Please note that it is only sometimes necessary for a business to pivot. The ultimate goal of shifting the company is to sustain profitability. Hence, a well-planned strategy should make the industry pivoting successful. That being said, changing would require additional time and money as you strategically shift from how your business has been operating. The company may also need to change its inventory, find new ways to deliver goods or services, rebrand and modify marketing materials, etc. Therefore, the pivot strategy needs additional financial resources while building it to become more profitable for long-term success.

What are the signs that you should pivot the business?

You pivot your business when you think there is an opportunity for sustainable growth. However, it is not some potion that could magically make all your business problems disappear. It should be the last resort when all other options have been exhausted.

You may need to pivot if: 

•    A stiff competition in the market.
•    There is neither increase nor a decrease in revenue.
•    Only a particular product gets traction.
•    Despite spending more money to sustain the business, it has yet to progress.
•    Customers need to respond to the products as you have expected.

A perfect example of a business pivoting strategy is the restaurants that now take orders online. Before, it was more common to order take-outs. But since the pandemic, food businesses have embraced this new way of earning by accepting orders online via their website, app, or social media and having them picked up or delivered to their customers. People have embraced the convenience of ordering food online thus there is a massive increase in food businesses because of this.

How to pivot the business?

First and foremost, do not just see this step as a temporary escape from your current unfavorable situation. Instead of introducing more product features, focus on one and present it in a way that the customers can understand and eventually support. 

Pivoting the business means changing the company's operations and defining new goals that align with the pivoted business. You cannot look back at the way your business was and compare it with the existing pivoted business, as there will be a big difference. It will only get you off the right track.

One mistake some businesses make is not getting help identifying the right target market. You may wonder why your product is not getting much traction despite knowing it is essential. Maybe it is not the right market for the product in terms of price. For example, you are aiming a particular product for an ordinary customer, but it gets noticed less. Selling it to companies could be more profitable for you.

Before you make any move, look into how your competitors are doing. Identify their solid points and compare how you do it on your end. Don't consider making the prices the same as your competitors because that would not give you an edge. Instead, focus on what you can offer that is different from theirs.

Your message should resonate with your audience. Customers need clarification if its essential features are overlooked. Rebranding may resonate more with your audience than merely highlighting your main feature.

Strategize your move and ensure you get everyone on board before making the changes. Test your product/service pivot and create a pivoting strategy that aligns with the company's departments before implementing it.

For more information, you may contact Armando "Butz" Bartolome 
by email:
FB Page: Armando Bartolome


Watch more News on iWantTFC