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TO GET A RESPONSE

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To get a response from a doctor’s office recently I had to succumb to social media. I went through the regular channels, called their offices, called their support line, sent emails, and finally after much frustration and time I received no return of any calls.  Then who called me back were people who were inexperienced and attitude was below satisfactory and of course didn’t know how to handle the problem. I turned to the Internet and to a social media platform  and directed the comment privately to the doctor. Within 10 minutes  I received a satisfactory response and the  office manager who let information pass through her responded to the pressures from her boss.  Frustration  sets in so what is a consumer to do?  When frustration sets in it takes a lot more steps to make a customer happy again?

Does this sound like you experience with customer service? Is this what your customers are feeling? 

Why in this day and age, does it take a comment to social media to get a response via traditional ways of getting support? However, I have seem social media play a great role in service recovery and positive commentary in a timely framework. It seems that timeliness is the key with social media and I’m glad to see more and more  companies and organizations are paying attention to people’s remarks. good and bad and are responding appropriately.  Does your social media interaction process responsive, are you paying attention to the comments made about your products and services? Are you engaging interactively with your community and influencers?

Social media is not only about inward and outward bound marketing, content, etc.. it is about  interactive responses in a timely matter too.  Use it as your  two-way connection to your customer,to potential customers, to influencers, and even  to competitors, so pay attention before you lose your market share.

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How have you used your social media to engage and keep happy customers? Explained product functionality? Product Warranty? Service Recovery? Benefits? testimonials?  Set up your platforms and social media strategies to address these initiatives to best serve your customers and ease up  inbound communications too.

Passionate about Foodservice,

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TRADE SHOWS TRADEUP FOR CONSUMER PARTICIPATION

trade showAs I was rereading an older blog, and realized that updating it makes sense as this is still  a major challenge for companies.  They have only moved the needle a bit in engaging and increasing the numbers at tradeshows for their companies. Today’s span of age generations are looking for further engagement at these shows.  Trade shows still bring together buyers, sellers,manufacturers and their products/services availability.

Today’s consumers use the internet for  product information and competitive information(think yelp for foodservice services).They participate in virtual trade shows, social media and more.  In person shows have been less attended than ever before.  The sellers stand in their booth and wave the end users in or better yet just say hi , what’s new with your business? Maybe they should be asking, is your biggest challenge X?  Know your customers buzz words, and sweet spots to engage them.

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The number of exhibitors at a show today is disproportionate to the number of attendees.  Booth size may change; faces within the booth do change but the and how is always the same.  If it is an equipment show walk up and down the aisles and what you will see is a field of stainless steel, and  if it is a food show walk up and down the aisles and you will smell food and sample food, probably not knowing the difference from one food or another at the end of the day. What will they remember after the show about you and your products/services?

How do we inspire people to change the way they have done shows? With fewer days at show, attendees only visiting about 50% booth and even the quality of the booth visitation have changed. What is the ROI to the end users? What is the ROI to the exhibitor? The association, the trade show management company and so on.  The impact of trade shows affects the economics and time of many people and businesses.

Getting Started:

  • Look at buying trends for that market
  • Look at communication trends-social media, interactive, visually engaging
  • Look at the impact on a real world
  • Give relevancy to the consumer and you will build loyalty.

How do you make your exhibit more effective? How do you focus or engage people to come into your booth, draw traffic?

    1. Relevant food product demonstrations, samplings-eg. Comfortable, ambiance, passionate chefs and it makes a difference
    2. Know your audience. Narrow down your focus. Gain a better perspective on who you are selling to at this show. Equipment and products choices that will give your customer the competitive edge for this year.
    3. Offer solutions that are easy to implement
    4. Collaborate with fellow non competitive suppliers to come up with booth that are end users/client focused. Make it easier for them to envision what and how to use the products
    5. Rethink the way you show your products/services-think out of the box.  Another step could be to show it within a smaller version of a kitchen or…again using your imagination to get the buyer into your booth to engage them to tell their story
    6. Educational presentations at your booth-relevancy and powerful speakers
    7. Use vimeo or interactive storyboarding for testimonials or rolling out a video story
    8. Use apps that allow a customer to access information during the show
    9. Use social media as an engagement device to build excitement, tell them ideas, appear as an expert for your services and product.At show social media is a must to continue engagement for attendees and for the market segment who isn’t there so you build a following that goes to you for answers.
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People still want face time, engagement, great educational sessions and sampling of products to touch and feel. They are selected in what shows they go to and who they visit.  Don’t you want to be on their VIP list?

Trade shows don’t need be become outdated? They can reenergize with new ideas, interactive educational sessions, better networking events between industry leaders and build excitement via social media, ambience, venue and location.

If you are doing same old trade show tricks, how do you expect different results? Think about you trade show strategy for this year and make it work for you. Think about your marketing strategy too? Focused webinars, foodservice focus groups and all year round promotional social campaigns that engage your potential customers much more than ever before.   I can help you get started.

Passionately,

Marsha

marsha@marshadiamond.com

Trade Show Strategist, Foodservice Business Consultant,  Foodservice Engager-Collaborator-Influencer-Connector

BOOST BUSINESS TOMORROW BY PAYING IT FORWARD TODAY

payitforwardThe pay it forward” philosophy is a way to build relationships and do well for others without the expectancy of a gain for themselves in return. I believe it is possible to find a way to affect others in a positive way regardless of what your title is within an organization. I find that we are all have a passion toward making a difference in the lives of others.

People typically say that paying it forward can boost business. That may be true but the reasoning for doing it should be altruistic or it never comes across authentic. Another way to think about this concept in business is that it is like the cross-pollinating of ideas, thoughts, and building formal and informal connections. The more we apply this concept in our everyday lives, the easier it will transcend into our work and volunteer efforts.

Individually opportunities via social or informal networking opportunities give you an opportunity to engage with colleagues, peers, customers and prospects. You can interact by listening, getting their opinions, and forming a more intimate relationship with them than you might otherwise be able to at a more formal meeting. Paying it forward is an essential element of being an outstanding listen and sharer of information and ideas. It benefits all parties involved from which rewards will accrue. Invest in social media and it gives you the opportunity to engage with customers, and similar businesses on a more global scale. You can interact with customers from around the world, to listen, get their opinions, to form a more intimate relationship with them than you might otherwise be able to.

Paying it forward requires time, energy, passion and an authenticity about it. People typically say they do not have the time as their main reason to not participate. Simply by looking for ways to meet new and existing customers’ needs or by becoming a “friend” and trusted advisor — whatever the domain area, and without regard to whether their needs can be solved directly by your products or services — you increase the value that you deliver to your customer. They may then turn to you first with belief, loyalty, and hope that you will provide a suggestion or recommendation that meets their needs in the future.

The positive ripple effect of kindness acts is happening in many places around the world. Studies have shown that the effects of kindness not only make you feel good but also improve your mental and physical health, increases morale, builds credibility and trust, and builds effective work teams among your organization. The pay it forward attitude that our society is adapting more and more every day is really picking up momentum and becoming a big trend that will hopefully stick around for a long time. Bottom line – it is about doing what is right in professionally and personally.

What are you doing as an individual? Mentoring, guiding, connecting people, ideas, succession training, listening or?

Watch for my next blog for business ideas for paying it forward.

Passionately,

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