Archive for the ‘Customer Satisfaction’ Category

What’s the ideal way to showcase your customer successes?

October 13, 2014

Demonstrate Customer SuccessAs most marketing and business leaders know, to grow your business you need to demonstrate your company’s credentials by showcasing the customer successes that you’ve enabled.

In our previous article we saw that to leverage your past customer successes you need to develop a focused and repeatable way to generate powerful customer references that educate and convince new clients of the value you can offer them.

To showcase your client successes there are various techniques that companies use, each with its own set of merits and practical challenges: (more…)

A successful business is built on customer successes

September 18, 2014

Enabling customer successIn spite of the growing sophistication in technology, not the least of which includes the flourishing area of digital marketing, a new business opportunity is often won or lost simply by whether your prospect feels convinced of the true value that you are offering them.

From the customer’s perspective, in this situation there is often nothing better to help them decide than to hear an honest endorsement directly from another, similar customer.

That’s why it’s critical to properly leverage your past client successes when doing business. (more…)

Creating a customer-led company culture

June 17, 2014

Customer-led CultureEmpowered customers are shaking the foundations of industries everywhere. Compared to the old way of doing business, today’s customer revolution is driven by a set of self-reinforcing, customer-first paradigms.

In this new order customers set the agenda by establishing the terms of engagement; customers increasingly provide inputs for new products and services, which they assume will come personalized for them; customers expect companies to listen and learn from their everyday experiences and get respect when things don’t go as planned. In this emerging world a customer-led marketing culture can be a company’s competitive edge.

While a few companies “get it”, most still need to adapt to these unusual and fast-changing times. At such firms CMOs and other business leaders should consider several steps to develop and foster a customer-led company culture: (more…)

Customer-led marketing is your competitive edge

April 8, 2014

Customer RevolutionCountless companies across industries claim to focus fully on serving their customers. Only recently however, has the balance really shifted, putting customers firmly in the driver’s seat.

Whether they are consumers or business buyers, today’s customers are often more tech savvy than the companies that serve them. They have increasing access to insightful, comparative information on suppliers and their offers; they now have the ability to express satisfaction or shout out their discontent to friends and peers and they are ready to switch providers when needed.

To serve today’s generation of consumer and business customers, companies must accept that customers are now in charge, and winning their business means creating a customer-led marketing culture. (more…)

Successful companies mix digital and traditional channels to satisfy their clients and achieve business objectives

January 15, 2014

Mixing traditional and digital channelsWith 2014 now firmly underway, there is no doubt that digital and social media along with mobile technologies remain at the top of the agenda of many marketing leaders. They are seen as critical paths for expanding their addressable market reach and growing the business.

While there is no doubt that digital marketing tools can boost the public awareness of a company and of its offers, while offering clients a personalized and interactive way of engaging with their brands, to achieve measurable business results, digital tools must be part of a company’s broader, well-thought out marketing strategy. Otherwise, it’s like spending money to generate more noise in an increasingly crowded marketplace. (more…)

Tech companies: Sell customer value rather than products

July 22, 2013

Sell customer value propostions rather than productsDuring our recent interactions and discussions with various technology firms in the software, Web and telecoms sectors, it seems that when commercializing their products and services, the majority focus on either promoting the features and characteristics they offer clients (e.g. A cloud-based file sharing services that syncs across mobile and desktop devices), or on the practical benefits that clients get from buying their offers (e.g. Simple, secure file sharing from anywhere).

While many companies offer leading edge, technology-based products and services, a large number end-up with a ‘me-too’ approach.

Such products and services usually lack a clear set of measurable advantages that come from using the offer as compared to the next best market alternative, including the unique value provided to prospective customers.

Does this really matter in our quickly-evolving technology marketplace? (more…)

B2B Tech Companies: Marketing is about more than just supporting sales

June 5, 2013

Marketing is more than just sales supportLast week, along with 250 other marketing professionals, I had the pleasure of attending the ICT Marketing Directors’ Club (CMIT) annual Forum in Paris.

This association of mainly French-based, marketing and communications professionals from dozens of small to large technology companies includes marketing directors from international firms like Adobe, Alcatel-Lucent, IBM and Sharp.

This year’s forum focused on the main challenges and opportunities in marketing over that past 10 years. In particular, the topics discussed dealt with various outbound marketing activities: Creating market positioning; Generating leads in the digital age; The challenges of channel marketing, and how to manage branding and reputation on and offline.

While the forum was very interesting and informative on the whole, examining the discussions more closely, the topics addressed related mostly to generating sales and business growth; an important yet partial function of the marketing practice.

The main part missing was the key role that marketing plays in generating client and market insights to direct strategy, to in turn create new value for customers, and ensure satisfied, return customers. This is the added value of marketing. (more…)

Connect with your clients to co-create new value

May 27, 2013

Connect with your clients to co-create new valueThis past week I attended Salesforce.com’s Customer Company Tour in Paris, where they showcased the various products and services that form their Customer Company vision.

During the introductory keynote presentation, Salesforce co-founder Parker Harris laid out 5 questions that companies must answer in their quest to become a customer company.

Viewed more broadly these issues are about becoming more relevant to clients by connecting, listening and collaborating with them through direct, interactive relationships, leading to the co-creation of more relevant and unique customer value propositions. (more…)

How a market-focused approach leads to products that customers value and will pay for

May 21, 2013

Products customers love

Innovation and new product development are hot topics in today’s market, especially in technology sectors like IT, software, Web, telecoms, and related areas.

Every organization has its own approach for developing new offers to bring to market. Today’s firms invest up to 15-20% of revenues on R&D, depending on the sector, for creating, testing and trialing new technologies and new products.

At the same time, when it comes to developing new products, what matters is not just the amount of resources allocated to new product initiatives, but how they are applied. (more…)

The power of consultative value selling: Get from “maybe” to “yes”

April 11, 2013

The power of consultative Value Selling. Get from maybe to yes.Today’s technology companies use different commercial approaches to attract clients, with some more effective than others.

Examining most commercial pitches reveals consumer and business propositions that are constructed in one of the following ways:

  • Direct sales propositions focus on the features and characteristics offered to clients by a product or service. (e.g. a PC with 2GHz processing speed)
  • More on-point client proposals focus on the practical benefits that clients can receive from buying a given product or service. (e.g. a quicker and higher performing PC)
  • Even more relevant propositions highlight the favourable points provided by an offer relative to the next best alternative. (e.g. a quick and high performance PC offering more choice of software than a Mac)

However, the most client-driven proposition is one that resonates with a customer’s particular needs and demands, offering them what they really value. (e.g a PC that provides “the right mix of performance, design and value-added services to meet your everyday demands.”)

Designing and selling a custom client value propositions is especially applicable for complex offers, where clients have a lot to consider, and for uncertain times, where they may need to be fully convinced before buying.

So how can companies get more clients from “maybe” to “yes”? (more…)