Whether globalization will lead to the collapse of the nation-state is still debatable. However, what globalization has done is to make the markets a lot more competitive, and interdependent. The interdependency, in turn, has made markets a lot more fragile. An economic downturn in the US could trigger a slowdown in India. The 2008 housing market crash in the States led to a global recession.
To survive such a competitive and fragile environment, businesses need to be on their toes, all the time. They should be looking at the next growth hacking opportunity to stay ahead of the game. The objective of growth hacking is to streamline business processes, maximize efficiency, and delivering unique experiences to your customers. For instance, if you are a small business and you failed to capitalize on Instagram’s advertising opportunities early on, you probably missed (a very important) bus.
While there is no set formula for growth hacking, there are tools out there that can set you on your path to a more efficient organization.
5 Essential Categories of Tools for Any Organisation
Rapid innovation in your industry, barrier to entry, and financial upheavals can wreak havoc with your business plans. The effects can be more severe if you are a small business. In a world where most communication happens online, and data is more precious than oil, here is a set of tools that can help you fight in a global economy.
1. Customer Relationship Management
In the modern landscape governed by digital interactions, you are very likely to interact with a potential customer multiple times before they convert to actual sales. A contemporary customer journey isn’t linear. Typically, people will go back and forth between different channels before they decide to buy from you.
A CRM tool can be your centralized data repository that keeps a record of every interaction you have a potential lead. Since it is centralized, everyone in your organization can quickly see where a person is in the sales funnel. Thus, it becomes a lot easier and quicker to nurture leads, hand over prospects to new team members, and escalate potential situations.
CRM, when implemented correctly, can make communication within an organization a lot more efficient.
When you are a small organization, tracking every lead manually is a doable task. However, you must always have an eye on the future. To make your business scalable and sustainable, invest in a CRM tool.
2. Business Dashboards
They are an all-in-one dashboard that gives you an overview of how your business is doing. You can get a quick report on how your business is doing financially; you can keep track of important marketing campaigns that are running and how they are performing, and you can get access to other kinds of important business data that can help you make more informed choices.
There are different kinds of business dashboards in the market. For instance, 9Spokes allows you to integrate all the business apps into one neat dashboard. Thus, you can get Google Analytics reports, keep a check on social media scheduling, monitor cash flow, etc. from one central dashboard.
3. Enterprise Social Network
More companies are choosing to invest in Enterprise Social Networks (ESNs) and for good reason. When deployed and managed correctly, an ESN can deliver incredible value to an organization. Within large organizations, it can streamline communication and build inter-departmental harmony. Scalable ESNs, such as Jambo, can function as discussion forums and give employees a sense of belonging. With features such as unlimited media depository and real-time notifications, Jambo can be a centralized hub for document management, project management, and communication between employees.
ESNs can be incredibly useful for HR functions, too. Global companies use ESNs to hire ex-employees for another stint and for finding fresh talent. It helps companies cut hiring costs while making sure they find talent that fits the work culture.
Then there are the benefits of brand advocacy and competitive intelligence, which can be derived from a scalable, customizable ESN.
4. Social Media Automation
In the world of social media, it is not just about what you post. It is also about when you post it. There is a lot of A/B testing that goes into figuring out the best time to post updates, depending on your target audience. Plus, there is the issue of too many social media networks out there. It can be taxing to keep a track of all of them.
Social media automation tools can take care of both those issues. There are tools that let you schedule your posts. Often, they come with built-in analytics to help you measure how different types of content are performing. There are also tools, such as BuzzSumo, that help you find content that’s trending and relevant to your industry.
5. Data Analytics Tools
In 2016, Facebook became more valuable than Exxon, one of the biggest oil companies in the world. The jury is still out on whether data is more valuable than oil. But the fact is, data is pretty valuable. The Cambridge Analytica scandal is proof of the power of data and how it can be used to manipulate people.
While we are not suggesting immoral (even unethical) ways to boost conversions, investing in data analytics is important if you are running a business in the 21st century. A lot of your interactions with customers and potential customers happens online. There is an incredible amount of data at your disposal, which can be mined to deliver unique customer experiences. You can also mine it to predict future trends, and make products that are in sync with those trends, thus staying ahead of your competition. The potential of data analysis is (possibly) limitless.