Ten years ago, the story of your company might have been determined by who you knew. Today, your story is crafted by the relationships you build on social networks. Technology for businesses, with a relatively small investment of time and capital, anyone can become a major influencer in today’s digital age. So for those of you who are eager to get ahead, here are eight ways technology for business is changing:
1) Social Media Management
Social media management is increasingly becoming an integral part of any executive’s job description these days and it’s no wonder why. According to the Pew Research Center, 72 percent of Internet users have a profile on a social network. From Facebook and Twitter to Instagram and Tumblr, there are dozens of networks that offer your company a chance to connect with your customers. That’s why we’re seeing more companies hire social media managers than ever before. The abundance of social media platforms also means that each manager needs to have a certain level of expertise in multiple spaces — analytics, public relations, content creation, you name it — and they need to be ready to adjust their strategy on the fly.
2) Content Marketing
Marketers have long used customer reviews and social media to gauge consumer trust. But as more companies rely on consumer-generated content as a way of garnering customer feedback (and review-seeking customers are growing in number), the need for brands to create their own content is greater than ever. As we’ve seen with companies like GoPro, Panera Bread, and Chipotle, the power of customer-submitted images and videos can’t be overstated. It’s an idea that has proven especially effective for small businesses because it provides them with a direct line of communication with their customers without spending a fortune on in-house production.
3) Customer Relations Management
Several years ago, if you wanted to get a hold of a company, you did it in person or you picked up the phone and called them. But with the rise of CRM software, companies are now able to measure customer responses and reactions in ways they never could before. For example, if a customer calls your company’s corporate headquarters and he or she is placed on hold for more than five minutes, your call center management team can view his or her call transcript and send that feedback to their agents as a way of improving their overall performance. In order to keep up with how quickly information moves these days, businesses are having to tweak how they handle customer service.
4) Location-Based Marketing
In the early 2000s, people started carrying around a new device called a cell phone that allowed them to share their location with friends and family through the use of GPS. By 2007, companies like Foursquare had begun to take notice and began incorporating location-based advertising into their business models. Today, you couldn’t scroll down your Facebook or Twitter feed without seeing posts from brands telling you about special offers at various retailers based on your location. What was once a novelty has become another smart way for businesses to reach customers and make money in the process.
These days, you don’t need a company with years of experience or large amounts of capital to succeed. You just need a small investment in time and money, great marketing strategies, and the determination that comes from knowing that your company’s story matters.