Starting a business (part 6)

Survey your customers
Consumers talks more about bad customer experiences more than they talk about the good ones. Every customer expects that you treat them exceptionally and wants to have a good experience doing business with you. Research found that 86 percent of buyers will pay more for a better brand experience, but only 1 percent feels that vendors consistently meet expectations.
Surveying your customers mean you want to understand what your customers think about your products or services, your brand, and your customer support. It also helps you to improve your products strategically, optimize user experience, and deliver exactly what the market demands.
There are different ways you can conduct customer survey, it could be

Define your unique selling proposition
How do you want to be described?
If you are asked to mention things that distinguish you from companies that sells similar product like your, you’d probably had a lot of things to mention; maybe your product is integrated, easy to use and versatile enough that it has many possible applications across a number of industries.

But giving a long list of every feature and potential benefit of your product is a poor selling technique. Instead, consider forming a unique selling proposition or USP.

A USP is a short statement of what your product or service does how it solves your customer’s challenge and why it’s better than other similar product. A USP should promise a clearly articulated benefit to consumers, offers them something that other similar products can’t or don’t offer and it should be compelling enough to attract new customers.
So how do you define your USP?
In your decision-making process, have it in mind that customers have short attention spans. If they don’t immediately see the true value of your product and how that value benefits them, they’ll move on.

  • Consider your strength and weakness. (Do a SWOT analysis)
  • Analyze your competitors’ sales and marketing materials, and try to figure out what their USPs is.
  • Put yourself in your customer’s shoes. Ask yourself questions like; why should they choose your product? What benefit are they deriving from your product? What motivated them to buy from you? Etc.
    NB: it’s important to note that the USP is not the same thing as your brand. Your brand is created through the story, personality and values of your company as a whole — sometimes, branding takes shape without you even realizing it. The USP, on the other hand, is focused on the unique benefits of your product for your customers.
    Regardless, you should be able to find some harmony between your brand, product, USP and ideal customer base. The most successful sales and marketing strategies occur when all of these components are working in tandem.

By Abraham Kemisola