When you are setting up your budgets or your cash flow projects for either your business or your personal spending have you considered all the costs? Most businesses do not because there are hidden costs that can throw you off. For example, if you go to the grocery store and purchase one apple at 50 cents you also have the taxes bringing that apple to 52 cents. There is a reason most of us do not go to the store and come out with one apple. There is also the gas for the vehicle to get there and our time to drive there, get the apple and then go back to the office.

It is the hidden costs such as our time that we don’t often consider when seeing if a project will be profitable. This is very common when you are trying to see if a marketing venture such as networking groups are profitable for your business.

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

So, what are the costs involved with networking meetings.

  1. Time – not just for the meeting itself but also for the time away from other business pursuits. That would be the drive time plus the actual time of the meeting itself. I have a hard time getting back into a work mode after a meeting. That means as the business owner I find other things that need my attention such as stopping to get dog food on my way back. I’ve even been known to go pick up my grand kids just to avoid getting back to work
  2. Auto expenses – most of us do not live close enough to all these meetings to walk. That means gas and sometimes even servicing of the car.
  3. Meals – everyone who goes to these networking events orders something even if it’s just coffee.
  4. Membership fees – these are usually once a year, so they are often overlooked when figuring how much we are spending

These expenses add up, but they need to be tempered with the income generated from these events – the problem is most small businesses don’t know where a client originally came to them from and some don’t even know how much each new customer is worth. If your customer is only worth $100 per new client and you spend $100 acquiring that new client, it is not generating profit for you. On the other hand, if each new client is worth $1000 with the same costs it is well worth your time.

We have several ways to help our clients track not only these costs, but the revenue associated with it. Our basic platform is Xero for accounting and then we add Spotlight reporting to give you better insight into your businesses return on investment figures. Schedule a meeting today to see how these insights can propel your business to the next level.