Monday, June 2, 2014

Honest Feedback: Why You Need It and Ways to Get It

In the world, everything revolves around communication.  In order to run a business that grows and thrives, communication and feedback are essential.  Oftentimes, small business owners may think they know what the customers’ want, but might later find out they were wrong.  This is where honest feedback comes into play.  Here are some reasons why you need it and some easy ways to get the feedback that will help your business reach a whole new level.

“It’s expensive and time consuming.”
Many small business owners have uttered these three words time and again.  While it may sound harsh, if you aren’t able to afford to seek feedback some level then you really can’t afford to run a business.  Feedback really isn’t that expensive, a small cost in relation to your gains.  As far as time goes-- make getting feedback a top priority like marketing your business or updating your database.
Photo via fensa.org.uk

Feedback costs both time and effort.  It takes energy to find out what people think of your products and services.  On the back end, it can cost if the feedback is negative and painful. The truth hurts sometimes. 

But the effort is well worth the information you learn.  Selling people what you know they want is more profitable than guessing what you think they want and being offended and confused when they don’t buy.  Customer feedback is your opportunity to listen to what your audience has to say and do something about it.  Point blank, feedback saves you unnecessary actions, wasted money and time.  Find out what people want and you can quit producing and selling what you think people want and stop marketing in avenues that don’t benefit you.  Use feedback so you can deliver what people want, consistently.

Feedback is your friend, but sometimes she’s hurtful.  Have you ever asked someone’s opinion to find out you hated his or her answer?  I have.  How did you respond? 

The truth hurts sometimes, but you need to hear it.  It needs to be an ongoing part of your company if you hope to grow with your customers and stay in business.

Here are ways to get feedback your business needs:
  • Social media is a great way to get feedback.  Listen in on conversations about your business in order to find out what people really think.
  • Utilize effective questionnaires to receive anonymous responses.  Remember not to lock in on one or two negative responses when you have a plethora of positive ones.  Instead, identify trends among the questionnaires.
  • For more in-depth interaction, use interviews.  Feedback is another side of a conversation that can hold incomparable value.  In order to converse with your customers, there must be an exchange, someone giving a message and someone receive it. 

Feedback is something every business needs.  It isn’t always pretty, but it does help you improve your business and it’s products and services.  Use the ways suggested to help get feedback and improve what your business has to offer.

Why do you think feedback is crucial?  How do you get your customers to give honest and open feedback about your business?

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