So now you are in the stage where you have already successfully launched your startup business. Now you think you can at least breath after those months where you almost hadn’t slept trying to stress test your business, identifying who you want as your target market and everything that is included in your business plan. But now that you have already taken your first step, what do you do next?
This is a common dilemma for startup owners, especially those who had too many competitors and whose market is almost generic to all startup businesses. If you are in a desperate situation where you can only hope your business is not going to flop in the next few months, here are three simple things you can ponder on to keep your business thriving.
- Brand equals Trademark- Take care of it.
Brand awareness is a phrase only a few people understands, but it doesn’t have to be so expensive and complicated, in fact, you can start with the simplest of things. If you have already developed a logo or a registered trademark with a line that is catchy, unique and sophisticated, then you are up for the next goal.
It is important to take note that your market is just starting, so your trademark or logo isn’t so familiar with everyone yet. Take advantage of people taking selfies together; ask yourself, “will they include my logo in the background?” Try having a special spot for couples, friends or families in your place- that adds extra value, because pictures like this are almost posted and shared automatically in social media.
Aside from that, you should also add a sense of curiosity. If you are a start-up restaurant, always keep your patrons curious. Make people aware that you are adding something new on your already fantastic menu. Put flyers everywhere telling everyone that you are “cooking” or “brewing” or “writing” something new, find a word that relates to your business and be sure to put your logo in it- make sure they get rewarded for waiting for it!
2. Do a little Survey
Ask your customers to answer a short survey for you. Say for example if you are an owner of a coffee shop or a restaurant, you can add these questions; (1) Did we price it right? If you are given the opportunity to do the pricing, how much would it be? Or (2) Is the food worth the price?, (3) Did we achieve the theme of our restaurant based on the food, ambience, furniture, design?, (4) Will you recommend us to a friend?, (5) Will we see you again?, and lastly (6) Please give me us any recommendation if you have any.
Do not make the survey questionnaire too long, and give space for them to add their recommendations, although it is still better to ask just the questions answerable by yes or no so it won’t ask too much of their time.
These questions require honest answers from the customers themselves. Customize the question according to the kind of business you have, and you’d be surprised to see how much insights you can get from your customers.
You can also ask them their contact information, so if in case you would like to invite them for promotions, you know how to make them impressed. If you want to know what they have in mind, ask them and have a survey questionnaire ready.
3. Make them Leave Happy- Customer Service is Key
Make the approach personal. If you are running a spa, train your attendants to introduce themselves to the customers properly. Give a business card to all your first timers together with something they can bring home like bath bombs.
Simple things like this give a lasting impression on the customers, plus if they remember your attendants personally, they are more likely to remember them the next time they call or come.
Jay Danzie, a famous business writer, said that “your smile is your logo”- which suggest that the front facing people of your company should be approachable and smiling. He adds that your personality is your business card and the impression you left in them is your trademark.
Do not tolerate disrespect or rudeness in your company, and it should always start with you as the owner. Remove the feeling of intimidation between you and your employees and you can have better business.
You can think of more clever ways to get your business to keep on running, but always remember that the satisfaction of your customers is still the end measurement of your business success. Customer service is the best marketing strategy.
About the Author:
Vincent Spivey is a business writer, researcher, editor and speaker. He likes to explore new areas for business development. He is currently working with young startup entrepreneurs. He is now connected with Livingston Loeffler, a law firm helping young leaders and inventors protect their intellectual property rights.