How To Write A Customer-Centric Business Plan
There are few better ways for today’s companies to ingratiate themselves with consumers than to foster customer-centric business plans. Nonetheless, in the dizzying, rapid-paced world of the 21st century, it can be harder than ever before to determine what customers actually want, and many managers and business leaders find themselves stumped. How, then, should today’s companies develop a business plan that puts the needs of their customers first?
By avoiding frequently made mistakes and fostering a certain set of values within your management and entry-level employees alike, your company will quickly find itself with a stellar, customer-centric business plan. Follow these quick tips, and consumers will be pouring into the door before you know it.
Building the right workplace culture
If you want to write a customer-centric business plan, you need to start with the foundations of your company. Determining your business’ ethics code, for instance, and drafting up initiatives that will help foster a pro-customer atmosphere, are all necessary if you want your business plan to be authentic and to deliver serious results. That’s easier said than done, however, so where can managers turn for help?
The secrets of building a customer-centric business culture aren’t too hard to grasp; short, concise mission statements, a well-thought out training process that instills your employees with customer-centric values, and an embrace of technology to make things easier will all go a long way towards ensuring your business plan is in top shape. This will take an investment on your part, of course – in order to make money, you’ll need to spend it, primarily by educating your workforce and utilizing modern technology to communicate directly with your consumer base.
The journey towards customer centricity isn’t easy, but few things in business ever are. Modern business innovations, like a heavy social media presence and an email marketing regime, will go a long way towards making it easier, however. By offering your customers discounts over the web and continuously (but non-intrusively) seeking their feedback on their favorite social media channels, you’ll quickly build a solid relationship between your consumers and your business, which will reap the dividends for years to come.
Of course, such a reliance on tech necessitates upped security measures, too. Particularly for those companies which retain personal or financial information on their customers, a highly-dedicated IT security staff to prevent any data breaches is a must if you intend to make your business customer-centric. A friendly and eager-to-serve customer relations management team, too, will be needed to ensure that any bumps you encounter on the road toward success are easily bypassed.
Know what to avoid
Whenever your company is launching a business initiative, whether it’s opening a new branch or determining what your business plan for the 21st century will be, it’s helpful to know what to avoid at all cost. By reviewing those companies that have already succeeded in developing customer-centric business plans, you can ensure you don’t make common mistakes, and copy some of the best strategies with the most proven results.
Companies with prolific social media teams, for instance, often enjoy strong consumer-business relations such as Cory Lagerstrom Change Path. There’s a catch to this, however; the internet can be a wild place, and strong security measures to prevent accounts being hacked or embarrassing things being posted are a must for any company hoping to make it in the interconnected economy. Similarly, a team ready and willing to provide various cultural perspectives will help you avoid embarrassing gaffes that might alienate some of your minority shoppers or clients, too.
Having a successful business plan that puts your consumers first necessitates some knowledge about who they are; developing demographic profiles of your most frequent clients, for instance, will help you better tailor your business to their specific needs. It’ll also help you shape your company’s core values, as you avoid alienating those who put the butter on your bread.
By embracing a modern, tech-centric approach to business and ensuring a strong customer-relations team, your company’s business plan will be up and running in no time. Putting the customer first isn’t always easy; often, it will necessitate short-term financial sacrifices for ensured long-term success. Nonetheless, a customer-centric business plan is always worth it, and will ensure your company’s moral soundness and market success for decades to come.
A social media marketing executive and entrepreneur, Alex has led the marketing divisions of some of the UK's leading advertising and PR firms. He specializes in usng the power of big data and business analysis to deliver actionable metrics.
As head of social media strategy, Alex is directly responsible for the customer experience and...