Adapting Your Business To The Marketplace

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |Running a company|Adapting Your Business To The MarketplaceRunning a company takes more than brains and ambition. Your competitors will have both of those things in spades, too. So, what is it that distinguishes a successful entrepreneur from a less-than-successful entrepreneur? Well, many factors come into play. Primarily, it comes down to planning. Plenty of businesses have failed over the years, despite being built on good ideas. You need to be able to assess the market. It’s important not to get trapped in your business’ bubble. Whilst building your ideas, your workforce, and your brand, you always need to pay attention to the marketplace. You need to pay attention to your rivals and your target audience. With that in mind, here are some ways to ensure that you keep adapting your business to the marketplace.

Cater to the needs of your target market.

You need to cater to the needs of your target market if you want to adapt your business to the marketplace. Guessing what your current and potential customers want is not a smart strategy. You have to come up with innovative ideas that actually solve problems facing your target market. Talk to your existing clients and potential clients in your market. Find out what changes they want to see in your industry. The goal is to find gaps in the marketplace. When you can do that, you’ll be able to come up with solutions that differentiate your brand from competing brands. That’s how you’ll keep adapting your business to the marketplace and gaining customers.

Advertise your business effectively.

Advertising your business effectively is another way in which you could adapt to the marketplace. After all, there’s no use in creating a fantastic product or service but failing to let your target market know about it. There are plenty of great companies that go unnoticed because they don’t know how to market their brands in an effective manner. Digital marketing is the key to success in the modern age. You might want to get help from a local SEO company to improve your website’s online ranking. It’s so important to show up at the top of search result pages to increase your traffic. Plus, with better content, you’ll see more of your visitors become customers.

Reward continued loyalty.

Even successful businesses experience hard times. The market can be unpredictable and unforgiving. You might have a profitable product one year and, the following year, see that same product stay firmly on the shelves of your warehouse. The best way to prepare for unprecedented shifts in your industry is to develop a core client base. You might not always find it easy to generate new leads, but if you have a reliable base of loyal customers, then you’ll be able to maintain a steady profit. Offering an excellent standard of customer service is a smart way to ensure that your company can successfully adapt to the marketplace as it continually changes.

So, to achieve this, you need to reward continued loyalty. You need to give your clients a reason to stick around. A loyalty points scheme could help with that. If customers see that they’ll be able to get discounts or even free gifts from building up points when they buy your products, then they’ll keep coming back to your store. You should surprise your loyal customers with emails awarding them with discount codes as a way of showing your gratitude.

This will make your clients feel valued by your company, and it’ll keep them returning to your business time and time again.

Easy Ways to Encourage Customer Retention

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Retention|Easy Ways to Encourage Customer RetentionCustomer retention is one of the hallmarks of a successful business. When you have repeat customers and genuine loyalty, you know that what you have to offer is just what your customer base is looking for. And, when this happens, you don’t need to worry so much about figuring out ways to appeal to more people or different groups. You know where you’re pitching.

Designing a customer loyalty program is one of the most effective strategies to boost your business growth. It is organic and doesn’t require the same amount of resources or time as trying to locate and identify new customers. However, this doesn’t mean that you can be complacent about your customers at all. You still need to think carefully about how you can keep their custom and continue to raise the bar.

So what does it take to ensure customer retention?

Make it Easy to be Loyal

People like doing the easy thing. We prefer supermarkets because they offer everything we need under one roof, we prefer products that free-up our time and once we’ve found something we like, we tend not to keep searching. This is ultimately what customer loyalty is about – you need to make it as easy as possible for your customers to stick with you.

One way you can make it easier is to offer a subscription service with easy and accurate billing. Billsby is a great option for this and the software can even give you a greater understanding of your customers with a value score. For your customers, a subscription means that they don’t have to think about using your company, they can make their choice once and then roll with it.

Another good way to make it easier to be loyal is to offer your customers incentives to continue shopping with your business. Supermarket loyalty cards are some of the best-known programs and many offer their customers discounts and exclusive deals, often based on the customer’s shopping habits. This is why loyalty programs like these are so important – not only can you encourage your customers to spend more by offering small discounts, but you can also learn a lot about them.

The easier you can make it to be loyal, the more likely your customers are to stick by your business. Just make sure that you understand what your customers are looking for and continue to meet their needs better than your competitors!

Stay in Touch

Staying in touch with your customers is all about communication. If you can’t talk to your customers, you won’t be able to tell them about the latest deals you have for them or find out what they could be looking for. There are so many ways to stay in touch now that if you don’t have a social media account, you are already way behind the times! Don’t even bother to continue reading this article just yet – open a new tab right now and set those things up!

Welcome back!

So, now you have a social media account, you need to know how to use it. Social media is brilliant for showing off your brand identity and engaging your customers on a more personal level. You don’t need to be constantly advertising or showing off; you can ask questions, comment on industry developments or simply post things you find interesting or amusing.

Another crucial form of communication is the humble email campaign. Again, if you don’t have one already, you must start thinking about this as soon as possible. You can even use your social media presence to build up your list of email addresses. The key thing to remember is that your emails must be relevant to your audience and provide some value. This might mean sending a newsletter including links to your blog but it could be more tailored and include particular deal codes they can use with your business to get discounts or other incentives.

Staying in touch with your customers should also allow them to influence how you grow and develop your business. In other words, you need to be able to have a conversation, not just a one-way lecture.

Use a Customer Feedback Loop

And that’s where the customer feedback loop comes in. If you want to know what your customers think of your services and business, the best way to find out is to ask them. Yes, it’s really that simple!

Surveys are one of the best ways to ask a lot of customers about a specific aspect of your business and to find out what the majority think. However, you must ask the right questions to get the information you really need. Remember that even though you might really want positive responses to all the questions you ask, the reality is that you know that there are things you need to improve and you need to be neutral to find out what those things are.

Another way to gain customer feedback is to run a focus group. This is a brilliant way to gauge interest in new products or ideas you would like to experiment with soon. Customer focus groups also provide forums for people to give their opinions in a more open way. Though you should certainly keep the conversation from deviating too far from your requirements, allowing your customers to express themselves openly could be hugely beneficial. Asking a market research company to run these groups on your behalf will also remove any possibility of unconscious bias.

Customers want to stay loyal because it is easier than constant shopping around. However, you still have to make an effort to keep their custom and ensure that you don’t take them for granted. Shopping around might be frustrating but it doesn’t mean that your customers can’t be tempted away. Keeping an eye on the competition is one way to avoid losing customers but you should also be thinking about what unique services or products you could offer.

If you really want to keep your customers, the best thing you can do is keep them at the very centre of your business plan.

Are You Giving Your Customers What They Deserve?

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customers|Are You Giving Your Customers What They Deserve?Your customers are the backbone of your business. They make sure profit is trailing in and out of your company, and they help to make sure your website is ranked at the top of google, with the amount of traffic that flows in and out of your ecommerce option day by day. Indeed, you start a business with the sole aim of finding and obtaining customer loyalty, to find the market that your product suits the best, and to guarantee they come back again and again.

And if you feel that customer loyalty is in short supply around here, it’s time to look into one of the most potential reasons why: your customers feel they aren’t getting what they deserve. They come to you for a good experience and a great product, and a couple of their expectations are falling short. But why? Well, let’s examine the idea below.

Are Your Prices Right?

Your customers may feel they’re getting a better deal elsewhere, or they feel they have the potential to from taking just one look at the prices lining your shelves. They might feel you’re overselling your products, and they’re not getting value for money, and they might just hate you for it!

So it’s key to research the market you’re operating in as well as the local area you’ll be selling from. If you’re an online only store, you need to know your niche, and the common prices across it; you’ll need to try and match them, as closely as possible. And if you’ve got a physical location as well, make sure your prices don’t stick out like a sore thumb on the high street.

Are You Shipping on Time?

Your customers may feel they aren’t being treated right in the delivery process. They might feel it takes way too long to receive their packages, or they might feel that it costs a lot of money for something they’ve bought to be shipped out to them. Of course, unless you’re offering international delivery, your customers will likely find it steep for you to be charging more than $3 for national shipping.

You can get quite a nice discount deal with various shippers, if you’re worried about not being able to get costs down. Even using third party logistics companies could work well for you – navigating away from the mainstream delivery has a high chance of saving you some pennies, so don’t be afraid to use a different shipment company to get your products out there.

Are You Offering the Right Rewards?

Finally, your customers may feel their loyalty is unrewarded, and thus, they stop shopping with you and go somewhere they feel appreciated. And this could be solved with a simple rewards program! Money off coupons, free products upon collecting enough stamps, etc. These are all viable options to keep your market interested.

Make sure your customers are getting what they deserve from you. Guarantee a good experience and they’ll come back for more.

Ways That You Can Improve Your Customer Care With Technology

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Care|Ways That You Can Improve Your Customer Care With TechnologyWhen it comes to technology, there are a number of ways that it can benefit your company. You can use less paper – good for the environment and also for the state of your office! – and you can make a lot of processes within your office run a whole lot more efficiently. But it can also benefit your customers, thereby raising your standard of customer care. Here are a few tips on how you can do that…

You Can Provide Information Easily

Thankfully, technology has made it super easy to provide information to your customers. Your website is supposed to be your first online port of call, so make it a good one. It should be instantly clear what your product is and what it should be used for: don’t provide too much information on the first page, because people will zone out, but go into a more in depth explanation on your ‘About Us’ page. You should also make sure that you should use your site to show customers how they can easily get in contact with you through phone, email, and social media. You could also consider providing a postal address on there, although remember that if you don’t have a physical premises yet, a PO box is just fine.

You Can Give Them What They Actually Want

Using analytics software, it’s extremely easy to see what your customers want. You can see how they interact with your company through emails and newsletters that you send out, through your social media feeds, through your app, through your website, through your blog… the list is endless. You can use the data that you collect to analyse what your customers prefer, meaning that you can provide more of that to them instead of irrelevant and boring information that will annoy and frustrate them. Figuring out what the customers want means that you can provide this information to your sales team, who will be able to target them and provide them with the exact services and products that they actually desire.

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Care|Ways That You Can Improve Your Customer Care With TechnologyYou Can Connect With Them Over Social Media

Social media has made building a relationship with your clients easier than it ever has been before. You need to consider exactly what sort of company voice you want to use: a lot of businesses settle on a business-like but friendly tone, but if you’re aiming at a younger market then you could also look into hiring a social media expert who speaks the language of memes and emojis in a way that can connect to younger people. You can demonstrate through your social media that you answer questions, that you’re always available, and that you provide simple solutions to any problems that people might have. Keep calm, don’t interact with trolls, and make sure that you post regularly.

You Can Keep Their Data Secure

Security is something that is hugely important to everyone, and technology can thankfully help to make sure that data is stored in a secure way, rather than on paper in filing cabinets in your office. You can encrypt data, password protect it, and make sure that only certain people can access it. This is particularly important when it comes to personal information like contact addresses and numbers, and even more so, payment methods.

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Care|Ways That You Can Improve Your Customer Care With TechnologyYou Can Outsource To Speciality Companies

Not everyone is completely adept at using technology, and if that sounds familiar, remember there’s absolutely no shame in outsourcing. A copywriter for your website blog is a great idea, a social media expert for your Twitter feed, and an IT company to run your IT services. It’s a good idea to hire a company that’s specific to the field that you work in: for example, a healthcare IT expert will have different skills from a company that’s used to running small online stores. Outsourcing can be difficult if you’re used to running a company mostly by yourself, but remember that you didn’t start your business to struggle with computers, with payroll, with other aspects of the business that you can’t quite get your head around – there’s no shame in enlisting experts to make those aspects of your company as good as possible.

You Can Ask For Their Opinions

Technology makes it incredibly easy to ask your customers for their opinions. You can post polls on Instagram to see what lipstick shade you could bring out, or you could make it more serious and send out surveys to see how your customer service is rated after people buy products and services from you.

It’s never been easier to build great relationships with your customers – technology has made it incredibly fast and simple to reach out to people and to provide them with what they need.

4 Ways to Improve Customer Care in Your Call Center

StrategyDriven Customer Relationship Management Article |Customer Care|4 Ways to Improve Customer Care in Your Call Center If you’re managing a call center, customer care is the name of the game. You’ll undoubtedly have all kinds of targets to meet, and it’s in your interests to make every call a customer care success. How can you make this a reality? Sometimes, customer care is less about focusing on the caller, and more about investing energy in your staff. Here are four ideas on how to improve customer care in your call center.

Service with a smile

Did you know that a smile can be heard on the phone? Picking up the phone with a smile on your face can make your voice sound warmer and friendlier, and encourage the caller to trust you. This all happens subconsciously, without the customer really being aware! It’s a free, easy way to build a connection instantly. With a smile, you can set up in the right way even the most challenging of calls. Train your staff on this simple trick, and you could see customer satisfaction shoot up!

Celebrate your staff

If you want your staff to smile on the phone, you’ve got to give them plenty of reasons to beam off the phone, too. Working in a call center can be energetic, fast-paced, and fun. But it can also be draining and repetitive. Not to mention the exhaustion of dealing with angry customers. Keep spirits high by celebrating your staff regularly. It could be a simple as some targeted praise after a perfect call that you overhear. Or you could create a reward system, perhaps where coworkers nominate each other, or based off a leaderboard related to departmental targets.

Create a positive environment

So much of excellent customer service comes down to brilliant representatives. But even if you hire the very best representatives available, if the environment is poor, they will either leave or become disengaged. The culture of the call center should be all about support and positivity. Then these elements will feed into the service provided. Remember, the culture is often dictated by what happens at the top. Think about how senior staff communicate and how they handle challenges. The team will look to them to set the tone for the entire department, so it’s vital they set a shining example. Positivity is everything.

Get the right tools

Making use of the latest tools could really boost your call center and make customer service a breeze. Artificial intelligence applications can make life easier for representatives as well as customers. You should also invest in analytics tools which will enable you to track and record statistics relating to calls and customer experience. This can be useful for training, appraisals, and rewards.

It might be possible for some of the processes within the department to be automated completely. For example, you can use RPA tools for real-time automation. This can improve productivity and allow for proactive staff training. Saving time and boosting productivity means benefits for you and your customers. You could even take the bold move of asking your staff what tools might help them better do their job.