Every business owner has a partner. This partner is a demanding other half and dictates every choice. Some business owners are not responsive to their partners. Take the time to listen when your partner talks to you. They will tell you exactly what you’re doing right and exactly what you’re doing wrong. Your partner is your customer base. They own half your business and they fund all of it.
A classic and damaging mistake people often make is to overlook the fact that the customers and the market are just as effective owners of the business as the traditional person in charge. Your customers control your brand and their perception of you means everything. Imagine running a shared business and completely disregarding the wishes and needs of your co-owner. This is exactly what happens when business owners fail to regard their customers as equals.
Humans are vocal and they are especially vocal about where and when they spend their money. People talk, write, tweet and share their every thought with regard to consumerism, creating an almost perfect textbook for how best to market to them. They tell you what they want and don’t want. Use the information they provide about your competitors and consider carefully their thoughts on your brand when moving forward.
Do you truly know your business partner? If yes, you have an unshakeable knowledge of your customer base. If not, invest in knowing them. Seek help in understanding exactly who they are through engagement and campaign management. Never discredit your customers; give them a seat at the table beside you. They’re a powerful force and determiners of your success. You deserve to know your business partner. You deserve Very Important Placement.