Over the past decade, business leaders have been quick on their feet trying to implement strategies to get profits back to pre-recession numbers. Some are jumping on the technology bandwagon, others are inventing new streams of revenue. Whatever the method, they must keep marketing tactics innovative enough to keep up with competition while also being careful not to compromise their company's brand in the process.
Experiment and keep track of it, suggested Inc. Magazine columnist Paul Brown. Businesses should use a small sample for the trial-and-error period. Data analysis demonstrates that geographic and demographic information can be a link to which products thrive in which environment. It also proves that the same strategy might not work in a new location. This will allow executives to cover a lot of ground without spending a ton of money.
Executives should go for the low-hanging fruit. Innovation is impressive, it is necessary, but it is daunting and risky. There are plenty of places that leaders must channel their time and money into, which is why they should cut themselves some slack once in a while. Going for the low-hanging fruit means that businesses keep tabs on the competitor. It doesn't mean that they have to undercut them or copy them outright but they can learn from others' successes and mistakes and apply them to their own organization.
Leaders can let the market do the work for them. They should embrace and encourage client feedback. If a restaurant is serving a dish and the chef thinks mushrooms best complement it but the customer hates them, then the mushrooms have got to go.
An "ask and you shall receive" approach takes customer feedback a step further than just keeping an open mind with it. Business leaders should encourage it. The world is an evolving place. In practically no time at all, the needs and wants of the client could change. People may go from using one social media site to the next if the servicer can't keep up with demand. Comment cards, surveys and follow-up conversations can keep a clear line of communication open between clients and suppliers. After all, that is the most crucial relationship to the ebb and flow of business.
The client can drive an organization or be its worst enemy. What happens in a business no longer stays in a business. Customers are increasingly broadcasting their opinions, whether good or bad, all over the place. Adding to the word-of-mouth reputation is the fact that people are posting about organizations on Facebook and Yelp instantly. Even if a business has little to no online presence, it can still be represented in that space.
Ninety-five percent of people recently surveyed agreed that they share bad experiences when it comes to customer service and 87 percent share good ones, according to a survey conducted by customer service company Zendesk. The report is based on over 1,000 participants who have had experience with customer service in a mid-sized company. Of the respondents who indicated that they share bad reviews, 72 percent agreed that it was because they had to explain an issue to multiple people and over 50 percent agreed that it was due to the issue getting explained to one person but not getting resolved.
But one bad experience isn't an end-all for the organization so long as the company is quick to respond to it, according to the source. These results highlight the importance of communicating effectively and efficiently with guests. Although all of the marketing tips can prove to be effective and important, the ones regarding the client-business relationship are the most valuable. Once a customer exits the premises, they are walking billboards who can make or break a reputation.