Customer Centricity to Save your Failing Business

Businesses that practice customer centricity consistently outpace those that are not. Also, this happens during good and bad times1. I will focus on how you can get your business more towards customer centricity during these troubled times.

There are many businesses and brands that are captured by their glory days of yesterday. Afterall, they enjoyed the majority market share, had a loyal customer base, and made good profits. Indeed, leading and managing businesses during that time were routinely straight forward.

But then the market changed, and it did so disruptively. As usual, the disruption was led by the customers, and supported by ground-breaking technology. For that reason, customers became more demanding about what they want.

Indeed, they wanted new, innovative products, increased availability, shorter lead-times, and increased differentiation of product/service. Additionally, they demanded better quality at the same price! (Rob Abdul, Digital Expert). In fact, businesses are now forced to trade in the most demanding markets ever.

Sadly, many businesses and brands failed to adapt quickly enough to the new demands of their customers in a turbulent market. Let’s have a look at how a business orientation toward customer centricity may change your fortunes.

What is Customer Centricity?

Customer centricity means putting the customer first and at the center of everything that you do, says Jennifer Mc Ginn in Informatica. Even more, it is the ability of people in a business to understand customers’ situations, perceptions, and expectations.

So, how will your business achieve this? Well, for one, you may use the current big disrupter of business markets – SMART technology.

The word “SMART” refers to “self-monitoring, analysis, and reporting technology” (Kelly Bowers in Rezaid) For example, the Internet of Things (IoT) and digitalization enable businesses to better understand customers and allow them to personalize products and services2. In fact, connected products and the ubiquitous availability of networks and cloud-services create new conditions. As a result, everybody can now be reached anytime, generating diverse data that can easily and quickly be accessed2.

SMART technology leads to a market transparency that has never existed before. As a result, the customer journey is also massively affected. Therefore, disrupted markets…

So, businesses need to grasp the opportunities that SMART technology renders. And by doing so follow a customer centric orientation. Sadly, this is mostly a case of ‘easily said than done’. Because many businesses are still stuck with a product orientation, or they are inwardly focus to try and manage the disruptive markets.

 Concluding

So, how do you get your business oriented toward customer centricity? You need to start with changing the culture of your business…

But that is a topic I will discuss more in a subsequent piece.

Further reading: What Business Owners Need to Know – Organizational Culture Matters

Notes

1 Vandermerwe, S., 2014. Breaking Through 2nd Edition Implementing Disruptive Customer Centricity, Palgrave Macmilla.

2 Aunkofer, R., 2018. Connecting the world and reinventing customer centricity, NIM Marketing Intelligence Review, 10(2):54-59.

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Leadership Today. The Menace of Micromanagement

Micromanagement is generally not the preferred method for a manager to lead his or her team.

For instance, here’s a scenario of what can happen with a company if micromanagement is dominant:

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Leadership Today – What makes an Extraordinary Leader?

I think most of us wants to be an extraordinary leader, or wants to be led by one…

So, how does one become an extraordinary leader? Laura Garnett  in Inc. identified seven things that you can do:

  • Lead by example
  • Empower your team and members
  • Serve your team
  • Know how to inspire and engage yourself in your work
  • Be aware of your unconscious biases and welcome diversity.
  • Be more curious, ask more questions.
  • Always be thinking about your team structure and how to optimize it.

However, you also need specific skills to become an extraordinary leader.

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Starting an Online Business or a Physical Business, or Both?

Starting an Online Business or a Physical Business, or Both?

Is starting an Online Business or a Physical Business a viable option for prospective business owners today? I suggest business owners and business starters should do both, and then do business in an omnichannel environment. For your customer’s sake…

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Customer Empathy in Business

Customer empathy in business is a hot topic right now. However, it needs to be practiced the right way and right away.

Listen to Customer Empathy in Business

A business that fails to practice empathy will quickly fade away to be never seen or heard of again. Indeed, practicing empathy is one of the best ways to understand the reasons for your customer’s behaviors.

Hence, by putting yourself in the shoes of your customers, you may better understand their feelings and perspectives, and then use that understanding to guide your actions. After all, the actions you take will hopefully not only be for your own financial benefit, but also to address the concern for your customers’ welfare.

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Your Changing Customers

Listen to “Your Changing Customers”

The only predictable thing about your business is changing customers. That’s frightening! Because there are so many unpredictable things in today’s business world.

In fact, changing customers can cause havoc with your trusted and tested business models. Indeed, they can destroy them quickly and disruptively. Or changing customers can destroy them over time…

After all, you need not to be caught off guard or let your business dies a slow death because the behavior of your customers has changed. In fact, if you’re closely, and regularly monitor the behavioral trends of your customers, you might keep up with their needs, wants and motivations.

However, being one step behind your customers buying behavior will probably be not good enough. You should surprise them and let them know that you know what they’re going to buy even before they’ve realized it themselves.

So, let see how you can predict and manage your changing customers.

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Three Good Reasons to have a Business Plan before Starting your Business

Listen to: Three Good Reasons to have a Business Plan before Starting your Business

It can be a rather disrupting thought, starting your own business… It’s tantalizing, smelling of power, glowing with esteemed status and good fortune. But this starting your own business thing is, sadly, mostly scary, and intimidating at best. It is something you can’t conquer without a plan. Hence, we suggest three good reasons to have a business plan before starting your business…

In spite of having access to more knowledge than ever before, you’ll need a well prepared and structured business plan to help give you the first steps on your new journey…

The three good reasons to have a business plan are as follow:

To focus on your business; To secure funding, and To get people to invest in your business.

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Written Content to use for Digital Marketing Campaigns

Listen to the audio of “Written Content to use for Digital Marketing Campaigns”

Written content is for decades now part of our virtual world. In fact, I can’t recall a day that I haven’t visited the web to read something – news, an eBook, product info or a blog. Indeed, buyers that are seeking product info online usually ends up reading content on a company’s website or social media page.

So, if you’re a business owner with some online presence, you would enjoy buyers end up at your site and reading your content. Even better if they make a purchase thereafter…

Sadly, the written word has not benefitted much with the advances in digital communication technology. As a result, the winners here are mostly visual, voice and interactive content formats.

However, despite the exponential growth and use of alternative content, such as online videos, voice and interactive content, the use of written content is still relevant today. Notwithstanding, the success of the others, written content that is well planned and presented may render good results.

Indeed, you should make written content part of your digital marketing campaign.

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What about Crowdfunding to get Money to Start your Business?

For those that prefer to watch the video…

Crowdfunding to get money is rapidly gaining popularity as a way for start-ups to get their businesses going. It doesn’t require winning over investors, and it gains attention for your start-up before its launched. Additionally, it helps you evaluate what kind of demand there is for your product.

But even more, it gives entrepreneurs hope. So, if crowdfunding is well planned and executed, it may generate enough money for you to live your dream…

However, success doesn’t just happen. Indeed, with every success story comes a lot of guts, sweat and tears. In fact, running a crowdfunding campaign is no different.

What is Crowdfunding?

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The Matter of Growing Your Business

For those who rather want to watch the video…

Growing your business is a very important matter. However, it seems that companies during the times of the covid-19 virus lockdown are only focusing on strategies to survive and to minimize the damage.

But I think that for the open-minded business owners and entrepreneurs, this is the perfect time to think about growing your business.

After all, growth “is crucial to the long-term survival of a business,” notes nibusinessinfo.co.uk, pointing to these clear-cut benefits:

  • Easier to add resources
  • Locate and identify new sales opportunities
  • Expand range of products or services
  • Acquire new customers

So, surprise everyone and start growing your business like never before. Who knows if the opportunity will presents itself again…

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