Thursday, February 19, 2009

Is now the time to deploy a new product or service in Canada?

It is with great satisfaction that I begin a new series of articles for Castanet. Four years ago this month, I started Floodlight Consulting in Kelowna BC with the view of assisting small and mid-size businesses, and entrepreneurs to articulate what they do best in the Okanagan Valley.

The idea was to support my clients in such a way as to have them generate more daily sales. This would be accomplished through increased exposure, marketing, and branding.

In tough, economic conditions, I believe that our clients help us to decide what new services we should be deploying. It is only when we are tuned into our target market are truly offering the right services this business-client insight is then reflected in the retention, and acquisition of a new client base.

When was the last time you surveyed your clients?

In my first year of coaching on a professional level, I was providing three specific services to my clients, and this only over a short period of time. Every six months, I would have to find new clients in order to continuously fill the sales funnel.

At the end of the first year, I decided to do a survey through the services of Survey Monkey. I used a template questionnaire that they provide for Service, adding this question: “What is missing from my program?”

The answers were, on the whole, favourable this confirmed my expectations.

However, what I did find out from that survey was the following: my clients did not pursue my services at the end of the existing contract, this due to the fact that I did not offer them the next steps in the process, i.e. the services that would have ensured a continued, working relationship.

What a wake-up call!

In a short period of time, I added a few more services. To date, due to these additional services, I retain 65% of my clients.

In listening to my clients, I formulated appropriate programs, and created a niche for my coaching services in the Okanagan Region.

The question now is: what new services can you provide to your present clients, the ones that they would be willing to pay for?

The $29.95 I spent was a worthy investment which allowed me to better understand my clients.

Do you want to grow and market your business — even in a down economy?


Donald Robichaud

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