Time To Expand Your Markets?
“Who Is Going To Be My Customer In Three Years?”
As we go around the country and do our workshops, this is the question we hear again and again.
It seems like common sense: Most companies know they need new customers to sustain their growth. Yet all too often, they find themselves wondering where those new customers are and why their sales teams are not finding them. They have tried a number of options to sustain growth:
- New line extensions
- Innovative ways to find new customers
- Expanding revenue streams within their current customer base
- Better sales training
- New sales management
Sometimes it works, at least for a period of time.
The challenge, however, is that the business market is rapidly changing. Selling the same old way may no longer work. Today’s new buyers are searching for solutions online and the typical sales team is not even aware of these prospective buyers’ needs.
This is where we can help!
The Business Challenge
Client stories are so revealing. Whether it was EAC/Integrated Power Solutions, an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) in the battery design and manufacturing business, or Benjamin Obdyke, a manufacturer of roofing materials (the industry really does not matter). When they each contacted us for help, they were struggling with “Where were those customers?” Finding them seemed to be completely outside their skills. Why? They had grown their businesses well before. What had to change to reignite their growth again?
Purchasing Behaviors Are Changing
Modern consumers, whether they are in the business-to-business arena, are marketing to consumers or are buying for themselves, have changed the game. It is no longer what you say to them about your product. It is what they now say to each other as they talk about you. The conversations go on far longer than before and often continue after the purchase is completed. And this as relevant in the B2B world as it is in the B2C one.
In this zero-sum game, some win and some lose but few really get ahead. If your market is growing, your company can as well. But if your market is saturated and your products have become commodities, you may have to re-think your business model and your growth strategy.
It may no longer be about how to get more of the same customers using the same marketing, branding and product designs as before.
Instead, it is time to see who is searching for you. Time to change the game. To stop trying to imagine your future customer and instead, to see how they are searching for you. Some key questions you should start to ask:
- What keywords are searchers using to get to to your website?
- How are you using social media to build communities and conversations?
- Are you adding value in innovative ways online so potential customers can find your solutions and better understand why you are the right one for them?
To learn more about creating demand and capturing it, take a look at two of our blogs on Inbound and Digital Marketing:
- “Why Social Media is So Important to Your Inbound Strategy”
- “Why We Love Inbound Marketing and You Should Too”
Re-thinking Your Customer Strategy
After years of experience with a multitude of clients, Simon Associates Management Consultants (SAMC) has developed a proven, innovative approach to help companies “see, feel and think” in new ways about market “possibilities.” Our job is to help you step back and look at your business as if you are an anthropologist studying a new society or culture. As John Seely Brown writes: “The way forward is all around you.” The only trouble is your brain can’t see it.”
Our methods? Sometimes we have business leaders sit in on their call center phones to listen to what customers are asking for that their company “doesn’t do.” Or we take our clients out exploring in the field. Or we hang out with them, watching their operations and seeing their company culture in action. All the while, we are looking for unmet needs and pain points.
SAMC specializes in helping your current customers become better customers, as well as looking for new markets and new customers. We work with you to re-think your products, services, operations and pricing, business strategy, marketing strategy and corporate branding.
The times they are a-changin’. Can we help you adapt to these fast changing times?
Reserve Your Copy Of Our New Book
I invite you to read our new book debuting in July, 2016, “On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights.” In it, we take you through seven client stories about businesses that needed to restart their growth engine with new markets and different ways to create demand. Like the companies we discussed above, they just needed new customers. Using the tools of corporate anthropology, we helped them discover new opportunities that were literally all around them.
To pre-order the book, just send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about how we can help you find new customers, open new markets and create demand for your great products and solutions, give us a call at 914-245-1641 or contact us.