We all know that mobile marketing is the “next big thing” and regardless of your opinion on the best way to leverage it, you can’t ignore 6.5 trillion messages. Take stock as you enjoy this stat-rich video from Sybase (SAP).
Anyone in the service business knows not all clients are created equally. And not all clients are easy to work with. So this post is not for the professional who puts their clients first but for the client who assumes their vendors are second-class citizens.
Just because you’re paying someone for their services doesn’t mean that they are desperate for work or that this somehow gives license to treat them poorly. The fact of the matter is that you need them more than they need you. You have a problem to solve. You need a pro to help solve it. So be nice… and you might actually save yourself time and money.
While it is true enough that not all vendors are created equally (too), if you’re well prepared and listen closely, it is fairly easy to recognize those people who really know what they are doing (and not just giving lip service).
Tip: The more “buzz” a topic gets (e.g. social media), the more charlatans crawl out of the woodwork. So be wary… but be nice.
Having had a bad experience with a vendor doesn’t mean the next one is going to be just as bad. If you need to, take a break to restore equilibrium to your objectivity. It is always best to error on the side of caution and give the next person the benefit of the doubt. I know it is not always easy (which is why I never respond to emails when angry) but trust me, it will serve you well in the long run. Stay focus on your goal.
How does this save you money?
Is it really that hard to imagine that the people who are true professionals do what they do because they love it? And because they love it they are very good at it. It is not all about making money but they certainly know what their time and knowledge and talents are worth. They don’t need your validation.
When a vendor is facing the prospect of working with a client that respects their time/knowledge/talents versus one that does not, they will either go with the former (most cases) or charge a lot more (exception to the rule).
In addition, if you are not nice then you’re most likely going to end up with only charlatans to choose from. A charlatan may charge you less upfront but it will cost a lot more time/money in the end (and you may still not have solved your problem). As David Ogilvy once put it: “If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys.”
So be nice.
It cost nothing and it can save plenty.
At last, somebody finally put all those B2B social media stats into one nifty video a’la Socialnomics. Actually, that somebody was a company called Earnest (giving credit where credit is due).
Last year eMarketer published a “shocking” report that B2B companies are far more active in certain social media initiatives (e.g. microblogging) than their B2C counterparts. For example, 81% of B2B companies maintain company-related accounts or profiles on social media sites versus 67% of B2C. The video cites its sources. Enjoy.
One of the trends we’ve noticed in the past 2 years, likely resulting from the economic slowdown, is a muuuuccchhhh more deliberate approach to making decisions. Some individuals and companies are naturally more deliberate than others, but everyone seems to have shifted into a time warp. What used to be decided in a meeting, or an afternoon, or even a few days now seems to take weeks, months, and more. Why???
Pick your poison — tight budgets, not enough information, analysis paralysis, fear of making a mistake that might have more consequences than the initial decision itself, or just because we don’t have to decide now. But, there are consequences and opportunity costs when keeping your finger off the trigger, because “not to decide is to decide”. If you or your company wait too long, the window of opportunity can and will change, shift or disappear altogether.
How many viable programs, proposals, initiatives, ventures, etc. have you or your company put on the sidelines “just because”? Is one of your competitors taking advantage of an opportunity you may not be and gaining on you in the process? If you don’t take the necessary step(s) that can positively impact your business, someone else will.
Some years ago, a mentor put the following adage in my ear — “fail forward fast”. That’s just as relevant today. Clearly it’s important to create every possible assurance that a project will be successful, but if it isn’t, find that out as quickly as possible.
In pharmaceuticals there is a huge demand from researchers for software and other protocols that will help them weed out molecules that won’t pass Phase II or III clinical tests. Why? Because it costs between $0.5-1.0B (that’s Billion with a “B”) and 10-12 years to gain approval for a specific indication. If a company can “fail forward fast” they’ll be better off in the long run because the product(s) or project(s) that stick will be better – and so will you.
So dust off that category expansion proposal or new product initiative you’ve been holding on to, and make it happen. It may be the next iPod…