Tips To Launch A Winning Product

Tips To Launch A Winning Product

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A winning product launch gives a head start in sales for your company. It is one of the few opportunities to go from gradual to exponential sales. 

Here are seven tips to achieve a winning product launch:

Matching Product to Market Needs

A winning product launch begins with meeting the capabilities of your product to the requirements of your target market. This is often the domain of a product manager. If you are presenting a new product or service into the market you would be well served by getting out and talking to the potential buyers that your product addresses. Odds are you learn something unique and possibly so enlightening that it could be the turning point in your business.

A winning product launch cannot happen if the market wants a different thing from what you are delivering. 

Study the competition

A detailed competitive investigation based on your research and visits to the target market will help you make key choices. Check for the need to modify your product or service and customize it for that market.

Clear Positioning and Messaging

Positioning is the set of actions you do to place your product clearly in the minds of your buyers. If your positioning is not clear, your buyers and possible partners will be confused.   

Effective positioning is a communication process that makes the benefits and capabilities of your product so crystal clear to your buyers such that they get it without tremendous effort on your part. Your message forms the foundation for all communication to your target market.

Setting Clear Launch Goals

Be particular about what you want to achieve in your new market, including the level of sales you can anticipate reaching.You will not have a chance at a winning product launch if you do not establish clear goals. 

Proper and clear goals frame the purpose of your product launch. Once you have established the goals of your launch you need to consider how they will be measured.  

Priming the Pump

One of the most important tips to a winning launch is priming the pump. Priming the pump refers to all the activities that are conducted to build excitement and create demand for your product before it is generally available to buyers. You can do this no matter how large or small your company or the size of your budget.

Some ways you can achieve this is by involving customer support, though the sales team, your channel partners, executives or by involving industry analysts. 

Time the Launch Event to Maximize Sales

Identify the times and locations that afford maximum leverage and plan your lunch accordingly. Timing a launch can make all the difference in the world. This can be especially true if you launch your products on a global scale. 

Social Selling – How Can You Jump On The Bandwagon?

Social Selling – How Can You Jump On The Bandwagon?

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Social media is everywhere. It looks as though we cannot watch a TV show or commercial, read a magazine or newspaper or visit a website without seeing a social media icon and hear “follow us on Facebook”. Yet, a lot of companies and individuals are still not engaging with others in social media.

Here are some reasons to jump on the social media bandwagon:

Be Seen

Social media boosts your exposure. All of the social media sites have advanced search functions that offer keyword-targeted searches. Businesses can easily be found based on their name, merchandise, services, and location. Since social media sites are web-based, they also link to the major search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo.

Nurture Relationships

People do business with others that they recognize and believe. The social media sites are perfect platforms to actively built, nurture and maintain relationships.

Engage in Conversations

Social media essentially is a section of online media where people are discussing, participating, sharing, networking and bookmarking online.

People can chat on every platform of social media by adding comments to blog posts or YouTube videos or engaging in a running dialog on a twitter or Facebook stream.

Share Information

One of the main functions of social media is to share information, whether it be a link to a great article, a review of a business model or recent news.

Listen

Social media is being used increasingly as a measure for public opinion through the use of the like and share buttons. This allows you to see what people like and understand the recent trends.

Find People

By using keywords in the search functions in all of the social media platforms, businesses can find prospects, customers, partners, employees, and vendors. Recruiters can find candidates. Job seekers can find hiring managers and others in their targeted profession and companies. There are discussion boards and groups for finding others with similar interests. 

Find Info & Learn

You can learn just about anything and everything on social media. For example, you can learn “how to play the guitar” on YouTube, how to build a marketing company from a blog.

Customer Service

Customer services can be carried out by using Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Customer complaints posted on social media usually get a faster response and hence customers prefer to use it.

Sell a Product

Businesses are using all of the social platforms to sell their merchandise by advertising exclusive deals in their status updates on Facebook or Twitter.

Thus, the use of social media in sales allows salesmen to please their customers rather than disrupt their daily lives with cold calls and hard sells, eventually converting them into loyal customers.

How to Convert Your Marketing Spend into Sales

How to Convert Your Marketing Spend into Sales

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Sales and marketing used to be like quarreling classmates drawing imaginary lines across the bench. Sometimes they get along but most of the time they want to keep the other off their territory. Yet this does not work in the digital environment. Marketing builds relationships and loyalty while sales bring success.

Digital marketing today aims at building relationships and helping a company’s brand remain relevant in its industry arena. Emphasis is on personalized content experiences. Yes, these can improve the time spent on site stats. Still, the greater goal is to engage the customer while gathering intentional information that helps the marketer provide an even better experience.

The biggest challenge for marketing and sales teams today is penetrating this web of information, such that you are still able to extend your message to your target audience.

The best way to overcome this challenge is to:

Align Marketing with Sales

Any approach or model that hinges on the transaction or the purchasing decision is bound to miss out on the limitless engagements made possible by digital technology. Content is key to these engagements. In fact, it is of utmost importance during that span of time our market has not reached out to our sales team. It is how we penetrate a web full of information and get our message across. And, further down the buyer’s journey, it is what we need to arm our sales teams with: engaging, useful content.

Sales and marketing must work together closely to share their insights into buyer needs, challenges, interests and to better understand what converts a prospect. So, in choosing a framework through which you can align the efforts of your marketing and sales teams, remember these:

  • The path to purchasing is no longer linear. Our customers follow a web of information and go back and forth before making a purchase. The buyer’s journey can takes months at a time or even a few seconds.
  • There are several dimensions to social influence. It is no longer the sole function of your marketing team to build your brand. Keep track of your online reputation. There are several free and paid tools you can use for this.
  • Do not disregard your advocates. Whether or not they are customers, these advocates have social clout that can be to your advantage. When planning your content and video marketing strategies, keep them in mind.
  • Focus on the relationships that you build with those you engage with through your content and video marketing. Do not put the transaction or the purchasing decision as to your end goal; the digital sales landscape does not work that way.
  • Measure your stat and growth. There will be a need to calibrate and re calibrate your approach until you learn the common paths taken by your customers.
Strategy to Build an Effective Sales Plan

Strategy to Build an Effective Sales Plan

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The success of any company is hugely depended on the management and implementation of sales. Therefore, having a simple and clear plan for sales activities is essential. 

If you have never written a sales plan before, the task might seem daunting. Fortunately, it is not complicated. If done right, it can help you take a more strategic, big-picture approach to growing your business

A sales plan can be made effective by understanding 4 key points. 

Goals 

Start by deciding what you want to achieve. The targets can be anything, jot down whatever that comes to your mind. Dream big at this stage. 

It is important when writing a sales plan to have a clear image of where you are as an organization and where you would like to be at the end of the year. 

Allocate resources 

With goals and targets in place, you now need to consider what is feasible. Consider various options and choose the best. Also, take stock of your tools and systems. You need to invest in a customer relationship management (CRM) system and in other kinds of marketing materials you need to support your sales team. 

Communicating your sales plan 

i)With the sales team 

The success of your sales plan rests on your sales team. Your sales team cannot accomplish your sales plan targets unless they totally understand the plan. Your sales plan ought to describe how you will communicate the plan to your employees and the way you will train them to implement your plan’s actions. 

ii)With the customers and suppliers 

It is also necessary to consider any impacts your tactics can have on your customers or suppliers. Understand the shopping patterns of your customers, supplier’s delivery and production methods and make a plan that helps you in communicating the changes to them.  

Monitoring sales plan 

Your sales plan will assist you to monitor your sales performance and make improvements. List your marketing objectives and establish the results you expect you are promoting to attain. These results are measures will act as indicators of whether you achieved your goals or not. For example: 

After listing your objectives and measures, establish in your sales plan how you’ll monitor sales results, who will record and check results and how frequently. This data will enable you to visualize your sales performance over time and modify your techniques to improve your sales. 

Planning is often an activity that happens on top of regular business. To keep moving forward, spread the planning process across a week or so, focusing on one section of your plan at a time. The key is to just keep working. Start off small and build a concrete plan eventually.  

Tips to Build Good Customer Relationships

Tips to Build Good Customer Relationships

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Building relationships is key to learning your customers’ needs. You can gain more returning customers, referrals and net income in the process. If a business does not know the likes and dislikes of their customers it becomes a tedious task to grow your business. 

Here we will describe a few ways by which you can improve your relationship with your customers

Connect with your customers 

An age-old way of making human contact has been to find a common ground, a shared interest, or anything that shows you can empathize with them in some way. This helps you to build trust with the customers. 

Communicate 

Like any good relationship, communication has a major role in building customer relationships. Communication is not just a series of emails. Try to analyse the customer and understand how you can customize and create a personalized message for your customer. Example: From a bit of analysis from past data you can know what products the customer is interested in and then customize your messages to that. 

Not all of your communication should be about your company trying to sell something. Have communications reminding customers about special features that you have noticed which they are not utilizing. Let them know about developments in your industry. Create a personal relationship. 

Exceed Expectations 

The key to a better and stronger relationship with the customer lies is going above and beyond their expectations. Giving customers more than what they expect will delight them and make them come back to you. Make sure they walk away fully satisfied. Listen to your customers, acknowledge their concerns and resolve any problems they encounter. 

Feedback 

Feedback is a great way to understand your customers. Invite customers for surveys and ask them to share their opinion. You can identify the specific needs of your customer and find the best solutions to their problems.  Offering unique and personalized solutions will ultimately help your business prosper. Always pay attention to the comments and feedback and respond promptly.  

Show appreciation 

Reward loyal customers with special discounts and offers. Retaining customers is the best way to boost revenue. Build a business that offers the best customer service. Make sure that your products and services are always available.  

Customer relationships are more important than ever in today’s digital age. In an era where customers can easily give their views and opinions it becomes highly important that a company maintains a good relationship with its customers. Just like any relationship, strong customer relationships require work but the payoff to your businesses’ bottom line is worth the efforts. 

Effective Business Performance Metrics

Effective Business Performance Metrics

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Every entrepreneur looks at the financial structure of their business. One way to quickly understand the financial health of your organization is to look at the various financial ratios. Financial ratios provide insight into cash, credit and inventory situation. They reveal the stability and health of your business. Businessmen must review these ratios to understand the changing trends in the company.  

There are four basic types of ratios. They are: 

Liquidity ratios 

These ratios measure the amount of liquidity (cash and easily converted assets) that you have to cover your debts. 

Current ratio also called working capital ratio is used to measure your company’s ability to generate cash to meet your short-term financial commitments. Quick ratio measures your ability to access cash quickly to support immediate demands. A ratio of 1.0 or greater is generally acceptable. But this ratio depends on your industry. A low ratio means your company might have difficulties meeting obligations or taking advantage of opportunities. Higher ratio means it’s time for you to invest more of your capital in projects. 

Efficiency ratios 

These ratios are measured over a longer period of time and provide additional insight into different aspects of the business

Inventory turnover looks at how long it takes for inventory to be sold and traded during the year. This ratio will help you in understanding where you can improve in inventory management.  

Inventory to net working capital ratio can determine if you have too much of your working capital tied up in inventory. It is better if this ratio is lower. Evaluating inventory ratios depends on your industry and the type of business. 

Average collection period looks at the average number of days customers take to pay for your products or services. You can improve this ratio by establishing clear cut credit policies and also providing incentives to encourage payment. 

Profitability ratios 

These ratios help in understanding the financial viability of your business. You can also gauge what your position is in the industry.  

Net profit margin measures how much a company earns relative to its sales. Companies with higher profit margin are generally flexible and efficient. 

Operating profit margin or coverage ratio measures earnings before interest and taxes. Through this you can assess your ability to expand your business through additional debt or other investments. 

Return on assets (ROA) ratio tells how well management is utilizing the company’s various resources. Return on equity (ROE) measures how well the business is doing in relation to the investment made by its shareholders. Profitability ratios are also compared with several companies from the same industry to know where you stand. 

Leverage ratios 

These ratios provide an indication of the long-term solvency of a company and extend of your use of long term debt to support your business.  

Debt-to-equity and debt-to-asset ratios are used to see how your assets are financed. It can be financed from creditors or own investment. 

The ratios mentioned above will help you determine your financial position. Closely examine other factors and data to fully understand your business performance.