Have you ever expressed interest in a product online but were never contacted by the company?
I recently visited a website seeking a specialty product for recreational vehicles. (Since I travel a good deal by RV and am always looking for products that will make traveling easier or better in some way.) The website was very user-friendly, and I easily requested more information. I received an email indicating that all their products were sold through dealers, and a dealer in my area (without the name provided) would contact me soon.
If you found yourself scratching your head about the title of this post, you aren’t alone. We often hear so much about how to respond effectively to our mistakes and failures but rarely do we hear about what we should do when we succeed. Yet responding effectively to one success can greatly improve our odds of securing another.
If your business has weaknesses which are hard to change, don’t try to wish them away. Instead, use them to clarify and fuel your game plan for success.
Some of your weaknesses may have the potential to be used as strengths, and the rest can be used to sharpen your focus and lull your competitors into a false sense of superiority.
Almost every day we read about another merger or acquisition. For example, Bunzl, a London-based logistics and distribution company, made 22 acquisitions just last year, and AB InBev is moving closer to joining with SAB Miller. Yet, a recent Gallup organization study caused me to consider the limits of a growth strategy designed by acquisitions versus one based on organic expansion.
If your company is growing, congratulations! That’s great news. Now, here’s the bad news: your business may be becoming less connected with your customers with every sale you make.
Here’s why and what to do about it:
Imagine for a moment you run a package delivery business. Now picture what the most effortless customer experience might look like.
I’m willing to guess your vision includes a simple, mobile friendly online system for customers to schedule pickup, track delivery, and pay. Just push a button. Consider it done.
I’m also willing to guess your vision doesn’t include the customer inspecting every inch of your delivery van, then insisting to drive it. That’s your job, right?!
Yet this is what happens when trust is lacking in a business relationship. If your customers do not trust you, their experience will be far from effortless.
Over the past few months, several managers have expressed frustration about being unable to get an acceptable view of their end-customers. As one said to me, “we do not know how well our end-users are being served. We have no view on the customer experience. I cannot see my customer!”
These managers work at manufacturers who use distributors to resell their products to end-users. Distributors play an essential role in many business-to-business markets by providing a cost-effective way of moving products and services to customers.