How to Interact with Customers on Social Media Channels?

In today’s setup businesses cannot ignore social media intersection with their clients especially to improve brand awareness. Word-of-mouth and newspaper advertisement is the things of the past. Customers prefer to interact with brands on social media.

social mediaEven the most conservative and traditional businesses houses wish to make their own social media presence on Facebook, Twitter etc. or have their own website.

Even publishers operating from narrow bye-lanes in the old part of the city who are operating from one of the dark and dingy room of an old building, with hardly any ventilation, who have just electric connection now have a computer and a fully operational website.

Interacting with sellers, purchasers, vendors, and customers on social media are the decisive and crucial aspect of the marketing plan. How businesses can interact with customers through social media channels is discussed below.

  1. Importance of Social Media

In today’s age and time conversations happen on social media. Social media has become a type of customer service center for businesses. For whatever type of business one is conducting small, medium or large.

It provides certain benefits like lead generation, increased awareness, increased exposure, and reduced marketing costs, online search ranking and developing customer’s loyalty. The businessman must know which platform to choose from where he gets more audience and his business grows.

Large numbers of people are using social media for various different purposes and hence businesses cannot ignore it. They have to actively engage with the customers or they lose the opportunity to gain more users.

  1. Social media presence

Having cardinal relations with customers is an essential factor for the growth of any business. If a better relation exists between the business and customer, the business is in the better position to effectively grow. The strategy is simple but it should be used effectively to engage followers on social media.

Businesses should open up multiple communication channels and should be responsive and have their presence felt on social media. By staying integrated that is social and call center teams communicate seamlessly about latest updates and details on customers preferences.

They should have hands-on experience on engagement and be ready to welcome both positive and negative comments with an open mind.

If possible to manage the brand, the company can have a dedicated person to manage customers on social media. One can engage customers in various ways on social media.

Like you can take a problem statement and start the conversation by posting it on social media. The existing and/or prospective customer can share their opinion. Later on, you can promote your product or services by offering a solution.

  1. Choose platform which suits your business

There is no single platform or rule for social media interaction. It is by trial and error method that one figures out which suits the business the best. One has to evolve by learning and adapt your marketing strategies according to the platform one is using.

The best way is to treat the customer is such a way he wants himself to be treated. Do take care of the medium you are using. Each has a different approach like Facebook for more informal approach is better and LinkedIn should be used for more professional and formal approach. Instagram is a good platform if you wish to share a story. So on and so forth.

  1. Engage your customers but do not infringe their privacy

There are certain things to keep in mind while engaging your customers. You can have a relevant conversation with the customer but do not encroach into their mind space.

One should try to post blogs/articles relevant to the industry. While writing an article or blog sees to it that you do not focus only on your company’s product or services. You can post gathered information and interesting articles which are in trend and are relevant to your customers.

  1. Feedback and analysis

It is important to know your target audience and understand their needs. With so many multimedia apps available today you can acknowledge, wish and thank your customers.

Never ever ignore feedback you receive. Take it in your stride be it positive or negative and remember to analysis feedbacks. As they threw up an important and direct message about your businesses and ways to improve it.

Tips on how to manage your time and use it productively

TIME is one of the important things in human life. Everyone has 24 hours in a day. Few waste much of the time and few make good use of it. Those who make good use of it are the people who are successful in their life. They are more organized and more productive in their life as well as work.

time management

Many people waste time on unnecessary things and later on complain they do not have sufficient time at their hand. Time should be managed judiciously. Once gone, gone forever.

We will discuss how one can be good at time management:

  1. Everyone has only 24 hours per day

The first and foremost thing that must be understood is that everyone has only 24 hours a day, nothing more nothing less. No matter how much we are organized or disorganized. Time does not change. All we can do is to manage it optimally to get the best use of it.

  1. Identify where you are wasting time

Many of us waste productive time on net surfing, reading and sending unnecessary emails, posting unwanted and useless things on Facebook, Whatsapp, text messaging and talking long hours on phone. It was found that most of the people waste time ranging from 30 minutes to few hours daily each working day which can be curtailed.

To find out where you are wasting time, track your daily activities and record it. This will help you to identify those pockets where you are wasting your time and where you have made good use of it.

You will get an idea of what all things you are using your time in. Identifying useful and wasteful time is the first step towards time management.

  1. Curtail wasteful activities

Time management involves changing your behavior and practices not changing time. Once you identify the activities where you waste a lot of your time you should work in the direction of curtailing or eliminating those activities.

You can set goals for a week to test yourself. You can curtail long talks on the phone or useless chatting on Facebook or Whatsapp. You can see the change by yourself.

  1. Track and monitor your set goals

Once you identify your time-wasting activities and then eliminating or curtailing it, you will see a change in your behavior over-time towards those goals that you have set for yourself. Only setting goals will not work, you will have to see that you implement it too.

This will increase your productivity and decrease your stress (because your work is getting completed in a set targeted time). Keep on continuously tracking and monitoring your set goals it will motivate you to improve further.

  1. Prioritize your work

Start your day by making a list of all work that has to be done today. Next start numbering, 1 for highest priority or importance and so on. Once over with numbering, start the task with number 1 and so on. You will come to know how many tasks you can achieve is a day and accordingly set your benchmark for future activities.

  1. Delegating unimportant and time-consuming work

Take the work, master it with practice, teach someone thoroughly and then delegate. Once delegated, keep an eye for some time and then once the confidence is built delegate permanently. You can utilize that time for some other new and important work.

Those works which consume a lot of time and energy and are not too important should be delegated. No need for on-person-show even for small businesses.

  1. Stay organized save time

Try to keep everything in proper place that is in an organized way. You will save a lot of time searching for things you need for your daily use, like a pen, mobile, handkerchief, purse, scissors, calculator etc by allotting a proper place for each. Proper filing of your papers in different files like health file, income tax file, property file, insurance file etc. will help you stay organized and save time when you search for certain related documents.

Taking control of your time will help you accomplish many things and utilizing it in the most optimal way will give you lot of free time. Busy people are those who have time for everything.

Does your boss have these two rare leadership skills?

Dictionary meaning of boss is defined as “a person who exercises control or authority”. The relationship between boss and subordinate depends upon person to person. In a span of working life, one comes across different bosses. Some get a very good boss and his thoughts and principles are cherished lifelong. Some are not worth mentioning, while some become a favorite and are worth remembering for a long time to come. Some are remembered because of their leadership qualities, dedication to their work, and style of functioning etc.

leadership skillsFew bosses who are remembered are simple and do not misuse the position of power or authority. They make their subordinates feel equal.  They are “approachable” by their subordinates even if they have executive status. They give their sub-ordinates autonomy and freedom to take important decisions. Provide their subordinates with all the resources to develop leadership qualities.

Sub-ordinates do not wish to leave their jobs and are more satisfied working with bosses who share leadership from bottom-up and never lead from top-down.

Here are two leadership principles that every boss should practice with his team daily-

  1. Facilitating a shared purpose that gives the work a meaning

Those boss who communicate an image of the future get attention from their subordinates. The subordinate’s point of view should be heard and if possible and viable should be acted upon.

The boss should be able to communicate clearly what the destination of the work is which is being done. In short, the ends result. He should question them – Why do you work and the purpose of doing it. Once the sub-ordinates come to know the greater good they are doing they will be focused on the end goal. They operate on shared values and vision that they have mutually agreed upon. The decisions and actions become more guided by the principles in their daily life.

These components define the whole team with the tremendous amount of passion and energy whereby the productivity is unleashed to its maximum potential. When the subordinates sees the relationship between what they personally believed and direction of the organization, the commitment level towards their work and organization increases. The employee joins the organization as theirs and organizations directions are one and the same.

The boss, as a leader should be able to communicate and let the subordinate know the image of the future as to why they are doing the work allotted to them and how their work will contribute to fulfilling the vision of the company.

  1. Delegating and sharing power

Relations are built on two-way trust. Sharing power and releasing positional control by looking after the subordinates first is from the boss side. In return the boss gets an extraordinary loyalty from them.

The boss should not use his positional power for his personal gains, special privileges or self-promotion. He should put his subordinates in the leadership position so that they grow and develop new strengths and undertake new innovative roles.

The boss should be a risk-taking type where there is an open communication and space for creativity to flourish. Actually by sharing power, delegating work and releasing control the boss gains “real power”. By letting his subordinate work without fear or favor and removing obstacles from the path, makes the boss a real hero. If there is a substantial support or help from the boss, subordinates can do amazing work and put all their efforts towards the work that they are doing.

11 Success Tips for New Entrepreneurs

Being a successful entrepreneur means learning and observing those who have already achieved their goals. Only a few have a mentor which is a blessing but everyone does not have one.  So do not feel sad if you do not have a guru, do not worry. Here are few success tips that will go a long way to make you a successful one.

Success Tips

  1. Keep on learning something new every day

One should challenge oneself. Life is like a long college or university education where one learns something new every day throughout the life.

  1. Do what you are familiar with

Running a business smoothly takes a lot of time and energy. One can only be satisfied if he/she works in the field of choice one truly believes and has knowledge in.

  1. Give your business a try

We only come to know of our efforts once we actually do it practically. One of the ways to be satisfied is to give it a try. Whatever may be the outcome, even if you fail you will have no regrets at least you have tried it out and if successful nothing like it.

  1. Have an aim and vision

An entrepreneur or the leader is the one whose vision is always in front of him before he sets to achieve it.  He knows what his aim is and a clear vision will help find the path through different obstacles that one may face on the way.

  1. Have a good team of people around you

It matters, who are associates with your company. The best and the fastest way to change yourself is to interrelate, interact and mingle with those like-minded people whom you idolize and want to become one like them.

  1. Overcome your fear

“Easy said than done” overcoming fear is not easy as it has been developing from your childhood, but it has to be done. Fearlessness is like muscle that is more you work on it stronger they become.

  1. Without action things are worthless

You have an idea, a plan, an aim, a vision but it should be implemented through actions.  Because without actions all these things are worthless and are only on paper nothing practical.

  1. The successful journey began with a first step

One who has achieved the pinnacle also was a beginner. No one succeeds immediately. In other words, a strong and solid groundwork has to be prepared which takes quite long time. One has to invest time and energy in the enterprises as it grows.

  1. Build a team brick by brick

Business cannot be driven alone, it is a team work and every member should strive for the best successes. The contribution of each member counts. So build your team carefully with a lot of consideration. Build your own team which reinforces and strengthen your successes.

10 Raising capital

It is one of the most important and difficult components in your successful journey than you might have ever thought of. Hence it should be planned in a proper way. It takes longer time than one expects, hence it should be planned first. And then one should also keep expenses under control, avoiding unnecessary expenditure, especially during the early stages. Money saved is money earned which can help you during bad days.

  1. Gain knowledge from mistakes

Failures are the stepping stones to success so the saying goes learn from your mistakes as it is the best teacher and better if you learn from someone’s mistake and avoid those pitfalls. Analyze, observe, and find a way out.

Common start-up mistakes – You should avoid

Though starting your own business can be interesting but the field in itself is daunting. The journey of beginning business has its share of ups and downs and the whole accountability is yours. Each decision you make and the outcome you get is all yours.

startup mistakes

Many people when they start their own business do a lot of mistakes. One should learn from these mistakes, correct it and move forward. It will be still better if one learns from the mistakes from peers and avoid making the same one.

Toolsvilla is one of the largest portals that deals in machine tools and equipment which covers the big procurement gap. It covers both aspects of trade that is product availability and economical pricing.

There are more than 5000 registered customers within two years of starting the portal. Co-founders shares their experience and offered few suggestions for the upcoming entrepreneurs as described below.

When a company is launched the most important aspect the entrepreneurs should give is the highest priority to customer’s interest. Each and every step that is taken from designing the product to selling it, customers needs and difficulty should be considered. More often it is seen that the entrepreneur stresses more on what he is offering then listening to the customer’s need and problems. The customer should be the focus of attention and everything should revolve around it.

When Toolsvilla started it was just like another e-commerce website. On studying customer’s behavior and pattern through the feedback the co-founders simplified the user interface of the website. The customers were not too tech savvy. This led Toolsvilla to make the buying process more easy and comfortable.

Responding to customer’s demands and needs is indeed crucial and essential which drives the venture towards success. One has to go as per market situation and circumstances, depending upon demand and supply dynamics. If one is unable to keep up he may have to face problems. The strategy to take the company forward should be adjusted according to the need of the hour.

Many young entrepreneurs over indulge initially with the funds and have a tendency to spend recklessly. Maybe presently they may afford it but if possible they should avoid unnecessary expenses in the early stage. Operating on necessarily sufficient funds help companies take quicker decisions in case something is going wrong or in an unplanned manner.

Many new entrepreneurs are unable to ascertain beforehand the number of resources needed to meet their objective. One must set goals along with the time period in which it should be achieved. By doing little maths (calculations) along with accounts (income and expenses), will help them not to compromise on their targets under any situation.

All the co-founders should have a common goal and aim to achieve their targets. In other words, they all should work with same seriousness, commitment, and participation. Sometimes it so happens that one or two co-founding members back out. This will waste a lot of time and energy one has put in the project. Hence co-founder should be chosen with great care.

When starting a new venture most of the entrepreneurs do not pay careful attention to all the legal requirements needed, like PAN, GST, TAN, taxes, duties, PF, ESI registrations etc. Once the enterprise grows government officials from different departments start visiting your premises and point out to the compliance you have not complied with.

It is better to higher services of the legal practitioner at the onset of your venture who will guide you. If caught off-guard you will have to pay the sum plus interest plus penalty plus consultancy fee. All this will be taken into consideration right from the date when the enterprise began functioning. Same applies to the closure of the enterprises.

What factors influence the success of digital agency to flourish?

Nowadays most of the things are getting digital from ordering pizza to getting plumber to repair leaking tap to purchasing day-to-day grocery to digital payments. The digital world is exploding just about everywhere near us. So if you are still in a planning stage whether to jump into digital vagabond or not, see to it that you do not miss the bus. The competition is cut throat and there are thousands and thousands of people who are spilling over the space rapidly.

digital agencyIf you go along with the flow you will be reaching your destination much faster. That is using the available technology to its maximum extent. If you resist changing your ways of doing business against the flow of technology you are in for a doom. Present flow is going a digital marketing way.

Digital marketing field is driven by pure innovation and the ability to change according to the modern needs. Changing technology in the digital arena is a breeding ground for ambition and innovation.

In the competitive industry the digital agency needs to be marketable and for its existence, the development and operations of the company should be carefully evaluated at each step.

A digital marketing company, to ensure successes in digital field has to create great service which adds a constant value to its client. The best method is to under-promise and over-deliver to the clients’ expectations. This reinforces business success.

Another import point while servicing client is consistency. Just as for a film actor one mega-hit and then series of flops does not work, same apply in the digital industry. To safeguard your name and fame you will have to maintain consistency with your creativeness and innovations, continuously and persistently to deliver quality product or services to your client. One must aim for improving, promoting consistently covering all spheres of services rendered.

These efforts will bring in a steady stream of clients and along with it regular finances. From a business point of view, one has to grow vertically and horizontally to remain afloat professionally.

The digital space is a constantly changing field, one has to adapt to new environment and at the same time innovate something new and the latest. One has to regularly modify and alter the course of action and this makes the field dynamic. Training sessions, up-skilling of all the staff members is vital so as to recognize and be in touch with current trends and happenings.

Skilled and trained employees are the heart of digital agency. To retain them and attract fresh talent is one of the hardest hurdles for any agency to overcome. Every employee has one or the other hidden talent which should be developed and grown over time so that they take their skills forward. More and more youngsters are joining this creative field to unleash their true potential. These new recruits speak their language, think out of the box and understand the spread and importance of digital world. For this industry human resource is the biggest investment. Ultimately it builds a strong team.

Working with plenty of different brands and in different sectors and industries establishes the digital agency with a lot of experience and can work in any challenging environment.

How to Command Your Conversation?

Many entrepreneurs are good at business but lack the art of good conversation. If you are a boss spontaneous interaction is a just day-to-day affair, but if you are a staff then commanding like a boss is an extraordinary art which has to be held as holy. Among Southern Nigeria Igbo tribe the art of conversation is regarded very highly. But sadly this characteristic of communication among humans is lost somewhere.

ConversationOprah Winfrey, US entertainment mogul, talk show host, actress, producer, and philanthropist says that great communication begins with connection. All talk show hosts long for acceptance and significance. In the initial stages of conversation, one may see a lot of throat clearing, display uncomforting, and sometimes may-be silence too. If someone wants to converse then it is best to build rapport with the listener. As a businessman, you need to have conversations with staff, clients, and many different people, and all require a different approach. If you are unable to win these conversations then you may be missing out on golden opportunities.

Be cool and composed

You can charm your way through conversation which is pleasing and admired. You will have to trend fine line between being assertive and aggressive. Since you wish to command the conversation you will have to keep yourself calm and composed.

Speak less and to the point

Your body language and facial expression play a crucial role in the conversation. They can send both appropriate and inappropriate message across very strongly. Always be in your natural best, charming and beautiful. Let your vibes, aura, and style speak for you. It is better to speak less as each uttered word holds authenticity and legitimacy. So the more you speak, more will be chances of you making mistakes.

Involve yourself in the conversation

In fact, nobody wants to make a mistake. It is better to be a good listener. It is a good manner to lean a bit forward so as the participant thinks that you are equally involved and interested in the conversation. When the participant feels that he is being heard this, in turn, will attract him to listen to you.

Use quotes and be simple

Never lose the spirit of conversation. With a decent vocabulary, modulating pitch of voice and tone of speaking are a charming art to hook your participant towards your conversation. Humans have a very short attention span and will mentally move out of the conversation if it is too lengthy and boring. In case if another participant is stubborn, to put your point through come up with simple and practical quotes and examples that will leave him speechless. So when you are commanding be loud and assertive and polite when requesting.

Be confident while conversing

Be confident in what you are speaking because your confidence will speak volumes about what you intend to say. Do not be afraid to say a direct “no” if you do not agree to the point in question. At certain intervals take pauses when you speak, this will give time to listeners what you actually want to say.

See to it that you converse is around the topic(s) which are in your command and is your strength. In between spice it up with humor to keep it light and going.