Small businesses must listen to their potential buyers and show enthusiasm during meetings to build customer loyalty, writes Gabrielle Pickard-Whitehead. To earn trust, be honest about every aspect of your products and don't oversell what your products can achieve.
It's better to consolidate inventory into a single pool than to keep e-commerce and in-store inventory separate, writes Tony Holbrook. Online retailers should also make sure to keep up with modern consumer expectations by providing features such as two-day shipping.
Gas prices above $3 per gallon will have measurable effects on the US economy, according to the Wells Fargo Investment Institute. Previously, GDP growth has measured at 1.79% when gas prices have risen above $3, according to Wells Fargo data.
Marketers must be aware of the need for enhanced security, especially when so much customer and company data is now stored on the cloud, writes Amy Osmond Cook. Meanwhile, platforms such as IBM's Watson and Salesforce's Einstein provide sales and marketing teams with the artificial intelligence-powered customer insights they need to better understand buyer preferences and priorities.
Recent data privacy scandals and new regulations shouldn't prevent marketers from finding opportunities to reach and learn about customers, writes Rob Glickman. "The increased focus on data collection and storage presents many opportunities for marketers and their teams, the last but not least being a return to customer-centric decision making and communications," Glickman writes.
Top leadership may have a vision, but that vision is effective only when it's communicated through the lower layers of management to inspire the workforce, writes consultant Micah Solomon. This involves leading by example, plus carefully explaining the why and wherefore in a way that points employees to opportunities for advancement.
Some companies are dispensing with reviews, but given the costs associated with employees, reviews can be a vital resource for improvement, writes Lena Requist. However, it makes sense to evaluate your review process and make changes to ensure the time is spent well.
Many small-business owners continue to be uncertain about how provisions in the new tax law -- including a 20% deduction for owners of pass-through entities -- will affect them. Entrepreneurs and advisers are waiting for the IRS to write guidelines explaining aspects of the law.
Facebook Live offers marketers a unique opportunity to secure a reputation for authenticity via video. Marisa Sanfilippo explores content ideas for Facebook Live videos and emphasizes the importance of including calls to action.
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