How can your SMB jump ahead of the pack in 2017? (Learn how you’re already on your way!)

You’ve spent years (or decades, maybe?) building your business. While you have had success, but the pressure to keep competing and growing never stops.

This is the life you chose and you would not have it any other way!

You love the challenge, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy keeping the momentum going. Sometimes it feels like an itch you can’t scratch, or a small voice whispering in your ear: “You can reach the next level … Just juggle a few more balls … Hire the right consultant … Implement the new technology …”

Turn off that voice because everything you need is already in your hands.

Therefore, we believe that the business environment changes constantly but the fundamentals that brought you here – your story, people, tools and clients stay the same.

In 2017, jumping ahead of the pack means focusing on the fundamentals while understanding the changing marketplace and choosing your battles wisely.

Let’s have a look at how this could play out.

1. Your story is filled with insightful lessons. Share them.

Hence, why companies frequently ask us whether social media has any real benefit for business.

Yes, it does.

Most of all, social media offers a unique outreach tool to share your brand’s story. It keeps your audience engaged and enhances the overall customer experience.

In addition, leading CRM solutions like Salesforce can make that connection seamless, allowing your team to connect with your partners by Twitter, email, or whatever channel they prefer.

Remember that your company’s story matters so it is important to identify with your customer’s pain points problems and show them the way.

Consequently, this brings us to our next point – your customers.

2. Your clients are your lifeline. Drive their success in 2017

You’ve come this far by knowing your customers and what makes them tick. Looking to the future, there are certain trends you should understand.

If your target audience consists of Millennials, then you should know they are transforming the business world through their extreme loyalty to mobile devices combined with their lack of loyalty to brands. Furthermore, you know where to find them, but not what will make them stay.

Especially relevant today, superior service takes more than delivering on client’s needs. Going the extra mile now requires you to predict their future needs and CRM solutions like Salesforce are critical in this regard.

The Salesforce Marketing Cloud can help your reps analyse and review market behaviour, while features like Salesforce Einstein provide predictive analytics to automatically discover relevant insights, predict future behaviour, proactively recommend best next actions and automating tasks.

3. Your people are your greatest asset. Empower them.

“Your people are your greatest asset.” How often have we heard that? So often that it sounds trite? Probably. So often that we forget why it’s true? Again – probably.

So, our point is while the business environment continues changing, the importance of keeping skilled and motivated people never goes away and in 2017 examine your marketplace and make sure your people have the tools for:

Collaboration – Getting everyone’s input is the key to keeping up with today’s fast-moving environment.
Communication– Everyone has their preferred method of communication and when your people have all the tools at hand and they will respond to every situation adeptly.
Creativity – Constantly encourage creativity and exploration, and urge every team member to step up with his or her ideas, input and insight.

Furthermore, utilise your people’s strengths and they will thank you for it.

4. Your tools can make things happen. Make them happen. 

Most noteworthy, you must optimise the potential of your tools.

Most of all in 2017, there’s a big one staring us in the face. Namely, that Artificial Intelligence (AI) and predictive analytics are about to transform the way we work. Today companies can leverage AI to analyse data, identify trends and even recommend the next course of action. Salesforce’s Einstein makes advanced AI capabilities available to everyone, using mass quantities of data to constantly learn and predict future outcomes, drawing from consumer data, email, calendar and ecommerce.

Ceterna Group can springboard you ahead

Seems like 2017 is your year to jump ahead of the pack and it is.

Get in touch and let Ceterna show you the way.