We can say. “Our growth will be x% in 2019, but the truth is we can’t control many of the factors that dictate whether, say, revenue rises or not. Our efforts can’t counter 2019’s economic picture nor societal trends.
However, solid organizations control what they can. One of these things is an awareness of the environment.
The Federal Reserve forecasts GDP to grow by 2.5% with inflation at 2% and unemployment continuing to decline to 3.5%. But, as baseball great Yogi Berra once quipped, “Predictions are hard, especially about the future”.
However here are four trends in America that are worth considering as we launch into the new year:
- Communication Channels of Choice Consumers are increasingly disdaining live conversations in favor of services that don’t require talking, such as SMS and social media. Nearly half of Americans engage a chatbot or automated assistant at least once per week.
- Our Customers Demand More Control Over Their Data Deloittte reports that 71 percent of purchased data is inaccurate. Increasingly, consumers know when our contact with them comes from rented data, and this is an immediate turn-off. Think twice about purchasing data sets or selling/sharing your customer’s data with others.
- Personalization Continues To Make The Difference Most Americans now prefer to buy from companies which offer personalized experiences. Personalization can take many forms, but the most popular varieties are coupons based on the customer’s locations, communications on the customer’s preferred channel, and recommendations based on past purchases or service history.
- Customers Want Socially Engaged Companies Employee volunteerism, selection of socially responsible suppliers, gifts to local nonprofits, all these are becoming standard in marketing strategies. Even if you consider your company to be a low-key, nondescript service provider, having a public connection to a nonprofit prominently associated with your name makes a huge difference to emerging generations of buyers.
As noted, engaging in these strategies will not guarantee growth for there are too many things out of our control. But if we control the things we can, we give ourselves an edge, and even the slightest advantage can mean the difference between a good year and a great one.
Let’s get to work making this year our best yet.