Tuesday, April 26, 2011

This culture still needs the old school way of doing business

I had the distinct pleasure of visiting some markets recently for the first time.  It was very enlightening to visit with station managers and discuss their challenges moving forward, and the opportunities as well.  There's a real concern amongst the business leaders with the culture we are currently engulfed in.  It is called social networking and the Internet.

Social networking is attracting attention at a rapid pace.  Organizations are hiring people that are dedicated to handling the so called social networking side of the business.  Building Facebook and Twitter pages, Tumblr, Blogspot, Word Press,  Foursquare, you name it.  We all know time is money, and putting these programs together can be very time consuming.

Nielsen recently released information that 70% of people make their purchasing decisions based on recommendations from friends and family.  We all have our own board of directors we seek out when making those buying decisions.  It could be a family member, friend, or maybe even a friend on Facebook.

The old school way of doing business will never change.  In fact, it will be more important than ever moving forward.  Establishing relationships will be pivotal for success, specifically the relationship between the company and the customer.  People buy from people they like, and people they are comfortable with.  Someone they know will always be there if a problem arises.

These new media platforms that we are experiencing and enjoying are transforming the consumer.  Don't you hate it when you call a business and you get an automated response?  "Press 2 to reach the sales manager".
Is that what you would call customer service?  Isn't customer service when you meet or speak with a live person?  You can look them in the eyes and really experience what they are feeling?

I've always been a big fan of WOW-ing the customer.  Exceed their expectations.  To WOW a customer means it has to come from your heart.  We must learn to adapt to these new marketing strategies but still keep in mind the old fashioned way of doing business.  One-on-one attention with our clients.  More face to face meetings instead of texting or emailing back and forth.

It's the old school way of doing business.  To be successful, it will be more important than ever moving forward.