Three Steps to Make Your Revenue Resilient
Part 1 of this blog series, “Marketing, Not Just Advertising, Is the Root of All Business Growth,” discussed focusing on your product and developing your unique value proposition. Once you’ve done that, marketing plays a vital role in keeping you informed about the “health” of your offerings. It helps spot new opportunities to grow and evolve your organization and fine-tune your products or services. The external environment doesn’t ever stay the same – this is where trained marketers can keep you focused and on track.
How to make your revenue resilient - a managerial approach
Trained marketers can support you in identifying, maintaining and improving revenue opportunities, starting with three simple steps. This is your managerial approach to ensuring you have the right marketing mindset at work in your organization to stay resilient in changing times.
Step #1: Think ethnographic study, not survey
Ethnography is the study of human cultures and of people in their environment. It involves specialized research that requires observation and listening by trained, objective researchers, who take copious notes on behaviour and patterns.
To study your audiences’ wants and needs, you can apply the qualitative and observational aspects of ethnography to capture important nuances in why your audiences may or may not like a new service you are delivering or to discover ways to optimize existing revenue streams. The insights you will gain in this process are invaluable to product and service design and development, and they will help you avoid the common surveying trap. Plan for regular updates at a frequency that makes sense for the scope and scale of your product and service offerings.
Step #2: Look critically at the competitive market with analytical mapping for gaps and unique opportunities
A detailed and methodical analysis of your competitive standing in the marketplace should be a regular activity, and it can also become a report to your board and decision-makers. Make sure you understand whether there are new entrants to your market and how your own features and benefits line up. Analyze new ideation from your team against competitors and assess trends.
Be aware that institutional bias – “our audience thinks we’re great” – is out there. Starting the exercise with the Porter’s Five Forces model – it’s a business school classic – and the hypothesis that “we’ve got work to do to keep up” will stand you in good stead.
Step #3: Review customer experience design
The final aspect that you need to revisit regularly to identify new opportunities and keep your revenue competitive is customer experience design (CX).
CX is a way to capture and purposefully plan for how and when your audiences engage with your products and services. Because this happens increasingly online and on the go, re-examining this element frequently is particularly necessary. Your customer experience starts with how they learn about your offerings and extends through buying them to using them and then, one hopes, to referring others with positive feedback.
Your operating CX environment changes regularly, and you need to continuously improve your level of service in a way that meets the specific expectations of your unique audiences. Heuristic analysis and customer journey mapping are just a few of the tools your organization can use to prioritize problem areas and identify new opportunities. The right mix for your organization should be, in some measure, on your managerial radar for regular and proactive updating.
Building revenue resilience: What to do next
The takeaway should be that a marketing mindset of continuous improvement and refinement must be adopted to protect your revenue.
Whether you are reviewing existing revenue sources or planning new ones, be attentive to maintaining and constantly adjusting your products and services. Look for ways to integrate key elements of ethnographic research, disciplined competitive analysis and ongoing improvements to customer experience design to protect and enhance your revenue sources.