Perhaps no business function is as important as satisfying customers. Not selling products. Not engaging in long-term strategic plans. Not wooing potential investors. Not seeking ways to fund operations. If you’re a business owner, building close ties with your clients helps you improve your products or services, gain market share and run a thriving business.
Product or Service Improvement
First impressions count. The quality and positioning of your company’s products or services are cardinal in the marketplace. Consequently, think seriously about what you’re selling, who you’re selling it to and what the competition is selling. Customers play a central role in improving corporate activities because they can tell top leadership what’s good or bad in operating processes. In other words, you can improve products by sending quality-improvement surveys to clients and thoroughly sifting through survey results. In addition, customer-satisfaction polls provide insight into what the marketplace is expecting in terms of new products or service needs.
Strategic planning consists of tools, procedures and methodologies that a company relies on to achieve operating goals in the long-term. Planning speaks to the need of a coordinated, focused approach to succeed in modern economies. As an entrepreneur, customers can tell you whether the strategies you want to implement are in line with the marketplace’s expectations. Hire a market researcher to study your target niche, which is the primary segment you want to sell your products to. Market research reports provide useful data about economic indicators, such as income, demographics and spending habits.
Corporate clientele can provide specific, focused guidance in corporate expansion initiatives. Businesses engage in these initiatives to gain market share and stay ahead of the competition. Expansion plans include mergers, acquisitions and joint-ventures. Before joining forces with another company, top leadership often makes sure both firms have similar strategic interests, especially when it comes to branding and communication campaigns. For example, Company A, a maker of high-end automobiles, wants to merge with Company B, a low-end-car manufacturer. Company A’s clients might strike a defiant tone against the merger, fearing that the transaction could reduce the prestige associated with Company A’s luxury cars. As a result, Company A’s management might cancel the deal.
Customers help companies generate profits, the economic fuel needed to run a thriving business. By buying corporate products and services, clients reward a company for its operating prowess, setting businesses with lackluster goods apart from segments with performing products. As a business owner, you can feel the economic pulse in the marketplace by reviewing general price trends and adjusting your company’s prices accordingly. Reviewing prices occasionally helps your company stay competitive.
Marquis Codjia is a New York-based freelance writer, investor and banker. He has authored articles since 2000, covering topics such as politics, technology and business. A certified public accountant and certified financial manager, Codjia received a Master of Business Administration from Rutgers University, majoring in investment analysis and financial management.