Live interaction is set to beat social media
Smart phones have driven social media and after years of tweets, shares and likes, people are now opting for more in-person interactions. Live video is trending and starting to transcend other communication and with emergence of the big guns like Facebook Live, it looks like live human interaction is now starting to conquer cold, emotionless lines of text. It’s important that you now start to consider making your business more human as no one likes and answerphone messages, offline live chat or emotionally void emails.
Wages are up and more on the rise.
In 2018, there’s going to be a predicted 3% increase in wages across all sectors, couple that with unemployment being at a record low of 4.1%, employers are now more under pressure to increase wages to attract and retain workers. Minimum wages rises and mandatory pensions are arguably a good thing but someone has to pay for these additional costs. Make sure you’re not carrying anyone unnecessarily and you’re getting the most out of the staff you have. Zero-hour contracts and scrimping on staff are out and getting the most out of the staff you have is definitely in.
With remote working on the rise, keeping employees connected is a key interest area in 2018. Increasing travel costs, environmental impacts, greater work life balance and surges in technology are replacing the traditional office commute. With more and more remote working opportunities arising. Social learning, digital communities and live video streams have boomed as a result and many savvy businesses have been created to cater for this growing demand. Embrace the remote, the freelancer and the outsourced agent as this trend is here to stay.
Live stream video content
Goodbye generic and impersonal marketing, hello, real connections with real people. Live video is set to be the most effective way to connect and engage with your customers. Year 2018 is going to be all about connecting in an honest and personal manner. Video is one of todays most used media and live video even more so. Ever improving technology means you can now add real people in real-time to your product. Instant face to face meetings, live product launches or webinars. These should all be on your radar and with 72% of business reporting positive return on video marketing, this is something to start thinking about if haven’t already.
Customers are now more informed than ever; quick and thorough research is in palm of everyone’s hands and online and social media reviews are mere tap away. The customer journey is now a large, widespread and a complicated network. You therefore need to think in terms of the buyer’s community and not just a linear journey. Your reviews, customer service, brand perception and attention to the customer is now laid bare for all to see. Become a trusted resource, whether someone buys or not. Integrity is set to be the buzzword of 2018.
Features and benefits are dead. Problem identification and the solving of those problems are key. By making this one change, you better position yourself among your competition. Customers ask, "What problem does this solve for us?" and "Why do we need it?" rather than “What are the benefits of this product”. The customer doesn’t care about your solution if they’re not aware of their problem. This is where books like the “Challenger Sale” illustrates this shift to problem solver so beautifully. Shift your thinking and problem solve your way through the next 12 months.
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