The worst thing you can do, when your customers want to talk about one thing, is to force a conversation about something else. And it's obviously not a very nice way to talk with your co-workers, neighbors, or family. However the tech industry may be making this kind of gaff with its marketing.
According to one observer, there seems to be a significant disparity between what companies are trying to promote for technology improvements and what customers feel would actually be a valuable enhancement. Code is a company based in Manchester, England. They specialize in helping companies offer the most valuable digital products and services possible. To do this requires staying in touch with what makes a digital product/service valuable — that is, what customers are interested in. At the end of 2016, they made some observations and predictions about tech trends. Then they had the humility at the start of 2017 to double-check their claims against reality.
The resulting infographic shows a noteworthy disparity: digital promotions are talking about one thing while the actual consumers sampled want to hear about something else. The most striking example of this disconnect is a comparison of the number of late 2016 news mentions versus the level of customer interest about augmented reality tech:
- 24,200,000 mentions in news coverage — the most prominent topic
- 12.9% of customers interested — the least interesting topic
The immediate conclusion is that folks who spend their days watching the tech scene aren't the most in-tune with customer interests. This means that if your small or mid-sized business isn't already developing a virtual reality aspect of your products or services, you're probably just fine. No matter what the hype, buzz, and gurus might say.
In fact, the survey by Code gives some excellent advice on what you should focus on. The clear majority of customers said they want to see improvements to existing offerings. For different companies, this will mean something unique. Obviously, a light manufacturing company, a professional services business, and a retail organization won't be able to make the exact same improvements. But every SME can use the same principles to start gathering input from your clients and use that feedback to guide improvement.
From the Code survey, some additional, generally applicable findings are that consumers want:
- more responsive customer service
- better information about what they're buying
- less intrusive tech
- more convenient interconnections between their various online accounts
This final preference from consumers is just as relevant to your own staff. Outside of work, they are consumers, so they understand that technology can be designed to be clean, clear, and easy to use. Those expectations transfer over to the tools they use on the job. If your business operations software doesn't facilitate their work, then its causing needless friction and reducing your team's effectiveness.
aACE 5 is an outstanding example of software developed based on user feedback and organized for clean, straightforward functionality in accounting, CRM, and ERP. It integrates every aspect of your business, ensuring that information from the warehouse is usable by staff in the accounting office and the leaders in the strategic planning session. aACE 5 is built on FileMaker, so it runs smooth on Mac and PC, on desktop and mobile. It can be customized easily to integrate the unique, hard-won expertise that you've accrued through your past years of business.
This powerful functionality is paired with competitive pricing that makes it a compelling alternative to open-source solutions like xTuple, browser-based solutions like NetSuite, or client/server solutions like QuickBooks, Dynamics, and Sage.
Get more answers about how aACE 5 can accelerate your business velocity today.
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