and how to use it as a marketing advantage!
For many, feedback is detrimental – a negative, unplanned disturbance. It’s that dreadful, high-pitched squeal from the public-address system that sometime occurs when the speaker at the podium first opens his or her mouth to say, “Good morning.”
In business, there’s another form of feedback. This is the response you obtain from customers and prospects. It’s what tells you how well your company is doing.
Naturally, the very best feedback you can get is a sale – cash in your bank account.
The second-best feedback is to have a customer or prospect – really talk to you and tell you what they think, good and bad.
In the world of the most preeminent companies, those that invite feedback – and use it to improve – continue to outperform those who don’t.
Not only do these better companies seek honest evaluations about their performances, they put to work what they learn – sharing vital information with sales, marketing, customer service, and the product development department.
These forward-thinking companies that ask more than just, “How are we doing,” are rewarded with information that frequently improves their futures dramatically. Unfortunately, there are so many questionnaires and surveys floating around that responses can be slim. So, get creative, get bold. Or, get on the phone and talk to people one at a time – and listen, listen, listen!
Your canned questions are fine. But use them as thought starters. Let customers talk to you and tell you, in their own words, what they see, hear and feel.
Check within the first 30 days. Then check again in six months. Accumulate as much information as you can. Use all the information you accumulate. It takes the guesswork out of your direct marketing campaigns.
Look at what other companies are doing.
For example, the healthcare industry is buying in to Value-based Care Models. Value-based care models are highly attractive to healthcare providers and executives because they hold the promise of increasing quality and reducing the cost of care. Navigating the transformation to value-based care requires a robust set of data from across the healthcare network.
In order to become a useful tool, data must be transformed into information that can help drive strategic direct marketing programs and financial decisions.
To minimize manual data collection and conserve resources, a #SmallBiz should focus on metrics with readily available data.
In today’s direct and digital marketing, data can be relied upon to capture information needed to drive decisions. The idea of having a good marketing automation tool to capture more data at a reasonably price is a worthwhile investment. Companies are using cloud based marketing automation systems to get more data that drive many companies marketing. Some can give you a free 30-day introduction to the system. When you feel comfortable with a system, there is a monthly or yearly fee available to work within your budget.
When you summarize feedback in the form of charts, graphs, or simple to understand language, you’ll always know the score. You know if you’re winning or losing – and to what degree.
The basic corollary of direct marketing mail is that every time you use the mail channel, you need to learn something. If you are not learning, you’ll keep repeating the same mistakes. You learn by data. You learn by listening. You learn by reading this blog.
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