Community Sharing and Working Together

From defining community to revisiting our younger days when we were told to share, we learn that community sharing can help determine basic business practices. So, what is a community? It is a group of people with a common characteristic or interest living together within a larger society. Community is also described as a feeling of fellowship with others as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests and goals.

As we all have been taught from a young age, sharing is to partake of, use, experience, occupy or enjoy things and experiences with others. When you put the two together, it becomes a strong sense of belonging. And when businesses adopt these practices, their business will grow exponentially!

Community sharing with people wearing lanyards and name tags while serving others.

“The key benefit of the sharing economy that we are the most passionate about is that it empowers people,” says Rachel Botsman, founder and director of Collaborative Consumption and author of the book What’s Mine is Yours: How Collaborative Consumption is Changing the Way We Live. “It empowers people to live more sustainably, to build community in new ways, to make money from their existing assets and most importantly, to rediscover a human connection we have lost somewhere along the way.”

When businesses get together in their communities and take pride in everyone’s work, they will see growth and camaraderie that can only be accomplished together.

As the sharing economy picks up momentum, its reach has become global. In cities and towns around the world, people are creating ways to share everything from baby clothes to boats, hardware to vacation homes. There are also groups emerging that consciously identify with the big picture sharing movement. These groups focus on education, action and community building and advocate for a cultural shift toward widespread sharing.

From neighborhood level cooperatives to global organizations, these groups work to bring sharing into the mainstream. They see sharing as a new paradigm; a means to a more democratic society, and they understand that sharing is not a new fad but an ancient practice that technology is reinvigorating.

Connecting to Others Through Community Sharing

Identification products are more valuable than you might think when you involve them with your community sharing. From neighborhood get togethers to corporation events, name tags and ribbons are the best tools to get your brand out there. In addition, adding your logo to these products at community events can increase your brand reach.

Building these social connections can also help you reach your professional goals. By building relationships with people at work and in your community, you form a strong network of people who trust your abilities and are willing to support your business. And, in turn, you prove to your community that you are eager to help them succeed.

Building community: how sharing ideas can bring us all together

As the world grows more connected, digitally and physically, people are living closer together and interacting in ways they never have before. As a result, the process of building communities – coming together with people across cultures to share goals and ideas – is more important than ever before.

When it comes to joining together to make our neighborhoods, our cities, and our world better, one of the most important things we can do is to find out what we have in common. When we share something with the people around us – no matter how small or insignificant it seems – it can help us make connections we never realized we could.

Public art projects, community development groups, and museums are some of the people and organizations who are using this principle to bring us all closer. Check out these amazing examples of people getting together in completely new ways.

The idea here is that your community doesn’t just buy your product or service. The community stays with your business because they trust how you make them feel. You are providing solutions to their problems. So, the more you know about your community, the more you can help it grow. And by supporting your community, you help your business grow.

Building Customer Relationships

The key to any good relationship is communication. Keeping open lines between yourself, your employees and your customers is crucial to your success. Without this communication, those customer relationships that keep you in business will fall short of where you need them. And remember that without your customers, you will go nowhere.

You must meet the standards that the customer expects from you. This could mean products or services rendered. Make sure that everything your business does is for the customer. Not only will this help with the retention of current customers, but this can also bring in others that your clientele tells about your wonderful company.

Identification and Community Sharing

Name tags, personalized ribbons and other identification products will help your brand reach. However, and more importantly, these products will let you reach out to your community and let them know who you are and that you are there to help. Here are three products with ways they will help in your community.

Three stock rosette ribbons that are for first, second and third place.

Everyone Deserves an Award (Place Rosettes)

Community recognition can happen anywhere: school art shows or neighborhood events, so be prepared with award ribbons. Reward those in attendance as well as winners at any gathering.

A black reusable speedy badge with a printed insert for a community sharing event.

Reusable Speedy Badges and Community Sharing

Come together in your community by sharing products and services with those around you (name tags included). These reusable badges will identify everyone at your next community event.

Gold imprinted custom badge ribbon for a community event award.

Using Badge Ribbons as Show Passes

Create unique awards and passes with custom imprinted badge ribbons attached to contestants and given to guests. These ribbons are the perfect way to make sure that everyone at your event feels invited and welcome.

Read More: Better Your Brand with Community Service

Building a brand is something every business regularly focuses on. From excellent customer service to high quality products, brand reputation is everything you do to retain customers. This reputation directly impacts your customer’s behavior toward your company. Making sure that you better your brand will help you stay in business. You are building your brand reputation by producing high quality interactions with clients and customers.

Donations are a great way to show your customers how much you care about their needs. Giving something away is about adding value to your community, no matter if it is time or money. The joy we get from giving our products to those in need helps us to better our brand by investing in our community. By building this reputation, we continue to help those around us and improve our brand.

How Name Tags Step Up Your Branding

You see them everywhere: restaurants, grocery stores, retail establishments. Employees wearing name tags can be found nearly every place you need to go. And it doesn’t stop there! You can find name tags at conventions, conferences, meetings and more.

Someone putting on a name tag makes them immediately more approachable. A name tag connects your name with your face, so customers feel more comfortable where you work. A business’s best asset is its employees. Customers who interact with employees wearing name tags are more likely to have a positive experience. With these experiences comes customer loyalty.

As Scott Ginsberg, the Name Tag Guy says, “Your name tag is your best friend for several reasons. First of all, a person’s name is the single context of human memory most forgotten. And people are less likely to approach you if they don’t know (or forgot) your name. Secondly, it’s free advertising for you and your company. Third, name tags encourage people to be friendly and more approachable.”

Employees wearing name tags while traveling to and from work.

Logo Name Tags and Branding

Your employees can help with branding and customer retention by wearing their name tags outside work. Think about this: as your employees travel to and from work, if they still have their name tags on, you get free advertising! And, if they leave them on during off-campus lunch breaks, free advertising!

When employees continually wear name tags, your brand becomes more visible. The more people see your logo, the more they will know your business and what you do. So, when purchasing name tags, make sure to add your logo to make the most out of them.

Typically the power within name tags is acknowledged as a professional and friendly way to identify a company or personal identity. Many companies use name tags for branding and employee recognition. And this employee communication helps to improve customer care.

Name tags also provide confidence to those at a conference or meeting. Even if everyone doesn’t know each other, their names are visible, making introductions less intimidating. In addition, people can confidently call each other by their names.

Providing balance and uniformity is what name tags do best. When your business succeeds, your employees feel they are a part of that. So, having them help with your branding (by wearing logo name tags) is an essential part of your marketing.

Wearing name tags can help create an inviting atmosphere, making the employee feel more approachable. In addition, when your customers come into your business and see a face and can immediately associate with a name, it makes them more apt to stay and do business with you.

Custom lanyards designed with a business logo that are worn during a conference with identification.

Custom Lanyards and Networking

Everyone can use lanyards; seriously, you can find them everywhere. Schools, office buildings and even sporting venues use them daily. In addition, lanyards are commonly used during conferences, conventions and other events. Remember, every detail counts for any event, including branded lanyards for every attendee and presenter.

Not only do custom lanyards help in branding on the job, but they also help with networking at events. And, when you design your lanyards to have a business logo and name, it makes your marketing efforts more effective.

Keep your employees branded at all times. Add your logo and company color to a lanyard, and you won’t be able to give them out fast enough. Or, use a slogan or motto on branded lanyards to promote your business. These tools add recognition and identify not only the wearer but also the company. Often, lanyards are a requirement for access to a building or meeting and can be used this way as advertising.

While lanyards are commonly used for displaying badge holders or name tags, they can also be useful for other daily activities. And, they make for great marketing tools as well as providing security for events. Use branded lanyards for keeping track of keys and other personal items.

Lanyards are incredibly versatile due to their custom nature. Add text, logos, graphics and more to promote any brand. The text can be a phrase, a date or the name of an event or business. In addition, wearing a lanyard makes ID or credentials more accessible to show to others or for security proof that you can be in a building or any other typically private place.

The Power of Names (and how to help others remember yours)!

Whenever you put on a name tag, you become the face of your purpose, whatever that is. Your name tag represents this purpose to everyone around you, which benefits you and others. It can quickly help the people around you put your face with your name. We have all heard that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” So, tell that story simply and quickly with your smile and a name tag.

Going Back to School & Work Success

It’s that time again! People are heading back to school and to the office after having summer vacations and much needed breaks. And although some of us are a little more hesitant about going back to these tasks, we should all be prepared for what is to come. No matter if it’s school or work, whether or not you will be remote learning or working, here are several things to help every transition in your life go smoothly.

Going Back to the Office

Even thought it isn’t exactly the same as going back to school, getting back in the swing of these at the office can take just as much preparation as school. From working from home to in-office positions, and even hybrid schedules, everyone going back to work should be prepared for their coming workload. Make sure you’re ready to head back with some quick pointers and advise.

Acknowledge Success Using Prize Ribbons

Back to school and work ribbons for awarding teachers and employees.

Using custom rosette ribbons to acknowledge success will help anyone feel special. Employees, and really anyone, will know how much you care when you put thought into a prize ribbon just for them. And, you can customize these ribbons to say just about anything!

Start by picking how detailed you want the ribbon to be by choosing streamer count and length and how big you want the rosette part. Then you can work out which colors you want for your ribbon. Once you have chosen these styles, add any text and graphics or icons you need for these fun and fabulous ribbons.

Remote Work

If you are working remotely, here are few things to make your day go better:

  • Get dressed as if you are going into the office, it will help you retain focus throughout the day.
  • Create a working station or place that isn’t just the kitchen table.
  • Keep track of work that you have accomplished to keep yourself motivated.
  • Take actual lunch breaks: get up and leave your work station just like you would at the office.

Effective Networking While Working from Home

From video apps to professional development, networking while working from home takes focus and planning.

You think that you have it all figured out, right? Then life gets in the way. Whether it’s an illness or a family matter that takes precedence over being in the office, you might be asking how you can keep your networking alive and well when you are out.

It doesn’t have to be hard to network while away from an office or other business setting. Using available tools will help you gain control over your networking. And by using these tools, your remote working experience will be better than you expect.

We live in a time where networking is one of the primary keys to making a business work. And, when you use networking properly, not only will your business flourish, but it will also make an impact in your community.

In-Office Work

If you are physically going back to an office, remind yourself that’s where you work best.

  • Dress appropriate for your office/work setting so that you maintain work standards.
  • Keep your desk clutter-free so that you can stay on task.
  • Create a work calendar that will help you stay motivated.
  • Remember to take your breaks and lunch away from your desk (this helps maintain focus throughout the day).

Taking Pride in Your Work

Name tags for teachers and employees going back to school and work can help everyone to take pride in their employment.

You own it. Your name is on it: Everything that your company does, awesome or pathetic, it has your name on it. People contribute to the success and failure of projects, companies and their colleagues. It matters. Everything that you do. That trivial piece of work for a client, your contribution to a large-scale project or a part to play in a flawless delivery, you own that success; be proud of that.

From dressing for success to taking pride in everything you do, presentation matters. And don’t stop with your pressed shirt and tie, add something that will make you stand out from everyone else: YOUR NAME. The easiest way to accomplish this is a name tag!

By wearing name tags, or other identification, newer employees and other team members in the company are more apt to recognize each other. Name badges also provide accountability for all of your employees. When wearing name tags, it requires that your employees accept responsibility, one, for their actions and two, for the way they treat your customers.

Your job should always be something you can take pride in. So, from building trust with those around you to looking the part, learn to love what you do. Invest in yourself and keep learning how to accomplish what you need to do your job well.

For Students & Teachers Going Back to School

These ideas will work for both online and in-class options.

  • Stock up on supplies! Whether it’s for an art project or pencils and paper for students, make sure your supply closet has everything you will need.
  • Create an organization calendar. Place this in an easy-to-spot area in your classroom so that every student can see what is expect of them.
  • Prepare for daily meetings and lectures. Make sure to jot down what you need to make your classroom successful. This should include your lecture notes and messages and homework to send home.

Using Custom Signs for Your Classroom

Get students excited about their education with classroom signs. Use them to encourage participation with motivational quotes and classroom rules. By hanging these custom signs behind your desk, you’ll have no trouble keeping students engaged throughout the school year.

Whether teaching in person or online, classroom signs will look great behind your desk, or anywhere they are easily visible. Customize each sign with text and graphics that remind your students why their education is essential. As they see these signs every day, they will stay motivated to pay attention and participate in class.

Going back to school and work is easier with award plaques for students and employees.

And remember that whether it’s for work or school, we have the award plaques, name tags and custom ribbons that you need to keep your students and employees motivated while doing their work.

Get the Most Out of Attending Conferences

No matter what you hope to achieve by attending conferences, these eight steps will help you get there.

Part of maintaining a successful business is attending conferences. They give you opportunities to build connections, learn from experts in your field and promote your brand. How much you benefit from these opportunities depends on your approach. If you prepare well, spend your time wisely and apply what you learn, you will take your company to new heights. To ensure you get the most out of your conference experiences, follow these eight steps.

Three people talking while attending conferences.

1. Know Why You Are Attending Conferences

Having a goal is fundamental to maximizing your conference experience. If you know what you want to achieve, then you will know how to prioritize your time. So, unless your boss gives you a specific reason for going to a conference, come up with one. It could be to find new clients, learn about the latest technology or form a business partnership. If you have trouble coming up with a goal, think about where your company is right now and ask yourself what would make it better. Once you have the answer to that, then setting a goal for the conference will be much easier.

2. Find Out Who You Want to Meet

Now that you have a goal, create a list of people you need to talk to at the conference. By making this list ahead of time, you increase your chances of achieving your objective. Start by researching more about the speakers and presenters. Once you figure out which ones will best help you reach your goal, make plans to talk to them sometime during the conference.

Don’t just stop with the speakers. Use social media hashtags and other technology to find out who else will be at the event.

Most conferences these days have an app that allows you to connect with fellow attendees. Download the app before the conference and take a look at who else is attending. If you find someone interesting in the app, take the time to do a bit of research on them so that when you do happen to meet up in person at the event you can breeze through the icebreaker and get right down to a meaningful discussion.

3. Plan Your Conference Agenda

Business woman writing in a notebook before attending conferences.

Use the conference itinerary to plan which sessions you will attend. Any time you spend figuring out which session to go to and how to get there is time you could have spent working toward your goal. So, plan ahead of time and map out how you will get from one session to the next. Also, find out where the closest restrooms will be so you are not wandering the halls or showing up late to a session. Becoming familiar with the venue also allows you to help your fellow attendees, which is a great way to form new relationships that could benefit your business.

4. Prepare to Collect and Distribute Contact Information

Before you show up to the conference, make sure you have a way to collect people’s contact information. If you are lucky, you will have tons of business cards by the end of the event. Make sure you keep all that contact information safe so you can use it later. Bring a folder to store business cards in or put the information onto a spreadsheet. As long as you have a system in place, you will be able to follow up with the people you met at the conference.

Make it easy for people to follow up with you by having tons of business cards on hand. The cards need to be easy to read so that people have no trouble contacting you. Also, make sure to include your social media handles as well as your phone number and email address. For some people, connecting through social media is more comfortable than a direct email or phone call. So, give people different ways to contact you so that they are more likely to follow up after the conference.

5. Wear Your Name Tag when Attending Conferences

Two custom engraved name tags to wear while attending conferences.

Even though most conferences give you a name badge to wear during the event, bring the name tag you use for work. Wearing a name tag that matches your brand helps people associate you with your products or services. And, it increases brand recognition. If your company does not use name tags, talk to your boss about having one custom made. Wear it so other people can easily read it. As you wear a name tag that has your business name, logo and job title, you will see it spark people’s interest in your company, which could lead to future growth.

6. Pay Attention During Presentations and Workshops

After several hours of listening to people speak, your mind can start to feel groggy. So, do things to help you remain alert. Stay hydrated and have snacks for whenever you start to feel your energy drop. Sit close to the front so you can easily see and hear the speaker. For note-taking, don’t just write down what the speaker says. Think about how it could help your business improve and jot down your ideas. These are just some strategies to help you stay focused on the presentations. As long as you make an effort to pay attention, you will get a lot more out of the conference than if you didn’t.

7. Follow Up After the Conference

Don’t let the connections you made go to waste. Follow up with your contacts, but gently. You don’t want to come off as overbearing or desperate for a business connection.

Whether you swapped emails, social media or business cards, use what you have to start up a professional yet friendly conversation. Make it your goal to form a connection that will last. Listen to what they have to say, and don’t be aggressive in how you approach them.

8. Take What You Learned and Make Plans

You have gathered a wealth of information. Now it is time to put it to good use. First, go over your notes, especially the ideas that came to your mind during the conference. Out of everything you wrote down, what will help your business move onto the next stage of development? You may want to apply everything you learned at the conference, but what you do first will depend on where your company is at now. So, discuss what you learned with your team members and your boss before you move forward. Once you decide the best way to proceed, begin making plans. As you apply what you learned from the conference, and follow up with the people you learned from, you will receive a higher return on your investment.

Now that you know the steps to getting the most out of attending conferences, apply them to every event you attend. As you come to these events prepared to learn, make connections and promote your brand, you will see your business bloom.

Social Networking Success for Any Business

It’s so much more than having a Facebook account. It isn’t even about how active your social media accounts are. It’s all about how you connect with your customers. So, what is “it?” It, referring to social media networking, has increasing benefits that all businesses can take advantage of. If you’re not taking advantage of social networking, you’re missing out on a quick, cheap and extremely effective way to connect with nearly half of the world’s population.

Now, more than ever, people are using social networking to connect with brands.

Are you taking advantage of social media for your business? While it isn’t one size fits all, or every network is suitable for every business, you should be asking the fundamental questions: who, what, where, when and why. And, maybe not in that specific order. Sometimes the why should come first. The who is also extremely important. But, most of all, you need to answer where.

social networking is a growing trend for any business

So, where do you start?

Social networking should be a strategic part of your business marketing plan. With that being said, now you need to decide on where you will feature your business. Most businesses stick with Facebook as a foundation to get their brand off the ground. However, it is essential to remember that what works for one does not work for all. Make sure that you do some research on all of the available networks before making your decision.

Facebook may be a good place to start; after all, nearly everyone is on this network; and it is the most recognizable. Check out Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, LinkedIn and others to see what is right for your company. While you are looking for the best fit, here are some questions you should be asking yourself.

  • How do I want to be active on social?
  • What will I be posting?
  • How often will I be posting?
  • Which network will offer the best visibility for my business?

While you may not immediately know all of these answers, keep them in mind while looking at the different social networking sites. Instagram and Pinterest are image based, so if your company can host a lot of engaging images and product pictures, these may be the right sites for you.

Also, keep in mind the type of business you own. For example, do you own a company that works mainly as B2B? When trying to network with other companies to sell your product or service, LinkedIn might be the best place to connect with your consumers. Twitter is another great B2B site as it deals in real time and offers a great place to chat and connect with customers and other businesses quickly.

Setting Social Networking Goals

Once you make these social connections, you need to use them for making your business better. Set goals to help you achieve these connections. After all, marketing on social media can bring significant success to your company, create brand advocates and even drive leads and sales.

The key ingredient for doing social media marketing well is having a strategy. Without a strategy, you might be posting on social media platforms for the sake of posting. Without understanding what your goals are, who your target audience is, and what they want, it’ll be hard to achieve results on social media. Whether you want to grow your brand through social media or to level up as a social media marketer, developing a social media marketing strategy is essential.

From ads to regular posting, social media is different for every business.

And, it doesn’t matter if your business is large or small, what works for one may, or may not, work for another. However, there are some key elements and directions your social networks can, and should, have. Here is a quick list of things to make sure you are doing on your chosen social networks.

The problem most businesses face with social media isn’t whether or not to participate, but how to take advantage of it. Social media should be used to tell your business story and set yourself apart from all of your competition. Brand storytelling is one of the most powerful ways to differentiate yourself, connect with your customers, increase brand loyalty and sell your vision.

Without a social networking strategy, you might be posting on social just for the sake of posting. And, without understanding what your goals are, who is your target audience and what they want, it is hard to achieve positive results.

“Social media provides targeting capability, as well as reach and scale, at a lower cost than almost all other marketing channels,” said Abdul Muhammad, chief digital officer and partner at rbb Communications, said in a previous Business News Daily interview. “People are on social media all day, every day – brands must go where the people are.”

Implementing a Social Networking Strategy

Now that you have decided where you want to be, and why, you need the how. A strategy is where you’re headed; a plan is how you’ll get there. You have decided where to head to; now you need a plan. How should you fill out your social media profiles? What should your tone and voice be like? What posts type (i.e., image, link, video, etc.) should you use? Here are some things to consider.

Brand Awareness

social networking is a growing trend for any business

Your brand should be recognizable. So, think about your profile image. While a logo may be where your thinking immediately takes you, try and make something a bit more catchy. Take, for instance, our unique use of our logo. Not only does it let our customers know what our business brand is, but it also tells more of a story about our products and what we can offer to our customers.

Other elements of a business page include a cover photo or video, shared images, about us sections and other storytelling tools. These are necessary for every business while socially networking. Make sure to fill out each network’s page information sections entirely so that your customers can get the whole picture.

Remember to tell the truth. Don’t fudge or exaggerate any of your business details. If a potential client thinks that you offer a service because of your social profile, then make sure they can get that service. The same thing goes for your product. You will end up with upset customers and declining sales if you are not truthful while setting up your new social profile.

Customer Engagement

As a business, you need to figure out how you want your customers to start engaging on your social network. This will vary depending on which network you choose. So, make sure to learn all of the features your chosen social network offers. This way, you won’t be shocked when your customers start trying to communicate with you.

For example, Facebook has Messenger, which features an easy way to chat with customers and other clients who message you. LinkedIn also has a similar feature. But, when it comes to Snapchat, that changes due to the way they work with stories and other posting methods.

But, most importantly, you need to be responding to your customers. Make sure they know and understand that you are on a social site for them, not for you. Sure, it helps meet sales goals and gets your brand out into the world. But, without proper communication, you won’t retain customers or make any new connections.

Building a Business Community

From Facebook Groups to Twitter chats, tracking your social engagement is a must. There are so many tools to help you navigate using any social media network. Before choosing one, make sure to do your research. They are all similar but remember that each one has different features. While we don’t recommend one above another, we do recommend that you check them out to see what will work best for you and your business.

You can’t determine the success of your social media marketing strategies without tracking data. Finding out what works for you may be trial and error at first, but there are so many tools to help you figure it all out. Use hashtags to keep engagement up. Try different styles of images on Instagram to increase your user participation.

But, no matter what, don’t give up. Follow the analytics of each social network you use so that you can retain information on your business community. You need to know who your customers are in order to give them what they want. Make sure they understand that you know them. Set up a way to give your customers the best customer service they will ever have on any social network. Once you do this, you’re guaranteed success in social networking.

But, no matter what you do, remember that social networking is unique to your business. So, get networking on what works for you.

How To Connect with Your Customers

Every great business person knows that the best way to keep their company around is to connect and engage with their customers. People buy from other people, they request services based on experiences and they look for companies that they can trust.

You learn a lot of information and how to connect with your customer by merely listening to them.

“I think it’s important for brands, especially brands [that] are really consumer-centric, to stay connected. Customers tell you so much from their behavior and how they shop with you.”
Jessica Alba, founder and CEO of The Honest Company

What is Relationship Marketing and How to Use it to Connect With Your Customers - Neil Patel

The first and most popular way to connect with customers is social media.

Using LinkedIn, Twitter and every platform in between, it seems that everyone is on social media. Even businesses have joined in on the social parties. Facebook groups, Snapchat filters and Instagram nametags are all ways to connect online with your customers. Each platform provides methods for both consumers and businesses to interact and grow together. 

Social media outlets are where the masses are, so you, as a business, should be there too. Utilize this tool and take advantage of everything they have to offer. Try sharing fun and silly tidbits about your products. Or send individual messages quickly to your customers. No matter what, use everything provided by your chosen platforms to improve your connection with your customers.

BUT BE CAREFUL. Not all platforms are suitable for every business. It has been said that everyone is on Facebook, but that doesn’t mean your business will thrive by using it. Consider all of the pros and cons of using social media before setting up accounts everywhere. Remember that there isn’t an easy or direct formula to matching your business to the right social platform. That is something that you, as a business owner, will need to figure out.

Social media is a great tool to use when connecting with your customers, but only if you use it properly. Make sure to do your research and that you have time to spend on each chosen platform. Think before you post, and make sure you are listening to your audience. Tools such as social media only work when used properly.

Focus on the customer’s experience with your company.

We see our customers as invited guests to a party, and we are the hosts. It’s our job every day to make every important aspect of the customer experience a little bit better.
Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon

Customers want to buy from a business that treats them well. So, don’t use a one-size-fits-all approach. Make sure you are listening to every customer. Treat them as the individual they are; don’t lump your customers into a bundle just because they are all interested in your product or service. They aren’t looking for a bundled experience; they are looking to be given an individualized experience.

You can make your customers happy by focusing on their experience with your company. Don’t put all of your focus on only the product or service they are buying. Connecting with your customers on an emotional and personal level is important. If you do, they will be more likely to recommend your products or services to their family and friends.

It is crucial to make an effort to connect with each customer.

Get to know your customers on a personal level. And, make your service or product as relevant to them as possible. Everyone likes to feel as if they are important enough to remember. So, make them feel that way with as much personalization as you can. Use a customer’s name during their shopping experience. Remember little details and tidbits they have shared during prior visits. This way, you can make an effort to connect each time they come back.

“It’s not enough to know just the demographics of your customers. Age and location data doesn’t tell you what you really need to know. Instead, you need to know your customers on a personal level so that you know what they want, why they buy, and why they don’t buy. Otherwise, you have only a superficial understanding of your customers.”
By Neil Patel, “7 Brilliant Ways to Connect with Your Customers on a Personal Level”

Show your connection with your customers through appreciation.

We understand that connecting on a personal level with your customers can be difficult, but it is also necessary to stay in business. You need to humanize every experience that your customer has with your business. In other words, be relatable. And be grateful. Showing your customers that you care they are buying from you will keep them coming back. The message is in the details, or something like that.

connect with your customers through handwritten notes

Sending handwritten notes, making a phone call or sending a private email are all great ways to connect with your customer. But, put some thought into your actions before performing them. After a purchase or rendering of service, thank your customer by sending them a thought out, well-worded letter. Don’t rush these notes as they will mean a great deal to every recipient. And, they could mean continued business for you. 

This also works for phone calls and emails. Make sure you think about what you want to say before hitting that send or dial button. Proofread everything you write before you send it. And, most importantly, make sure you personalize it. Don’t get in the habit of sending out so many of these messages or phone calls that they become autonomous. Always remember that you are addressing an individual, and they should be treated as such.

Provide unmatched customer service to keep them coming back.

Let’s try an experiment. Find the customer service number from any of your favorite companies and call them. What happened? Let’s assume you got through to someone, eventually, but you were still treated as a number in a cue. Or worse, you got stuck at a call center with someone reading from a script that didn’t answer your question. How did that make you feel? We know that no one wants that experience. 

Take us for a better example. Here at Coller Industries, when you call or choose our online chat feature, you will always be connected to a live person, and quickly. Every one of our customer service representatives has been trained to treat you as an individual. And, you will feel that way, guaranteed! Your order is processed like it’s the only one, and it’s handled with care and accuracy. We wish you had this kind of experience everywhere else. But, at least you know that with us, you’ll always get what you want and be treated with respect. 

One of the most powerful tools any company has is how they treat their customers during the business process. Providing the best possible customer service experience should be your number one priority. From responding quickly to customer requests to making sure you have a live person on the other end of the phone line, good customer service is how you retain your clientele. 

How will you implement these standards into how you treat your customers?

Here’s some advice, go that extra mile. By making sure that your customer service team responds to your customers personally, you solidify your business connections. Acknowledging questions and concerns from your customers will reestablish the trust you have already built. It will also help strengthen the relationship and connection with your customers and anyone they know. This, in turn, will bring in more clientele and business. So, the bottom line should always be to leave the customer grateful and satisfied.

Don’t underestimate the power of your customers.

Make sure you are asking your customers questions and continually searching for feedback. Finding out after a transaction happens that something went wrong doesn’t help anyone, especially your customer. Connect with them by asking for feedback before, during and after all transactions. But don’t become a burden. There are people who feel that businesses can be too personal and are afraid of what you might do with their information. So, make sure that when you ask questions, you are also being considerate.

Now that you have answers and feedback, make sure you are responding appropriately. If you receive positive reviews, give positive affirmation back. Tell your customers how happy you are that they are happy. Give your customers thanks for being there for your business. If you get a negative review, take it seriously. Respond politely and work with your customers to correct things.

“77% of consumers will read an online review before purchasing. Now consider the flip side. In most cases, negative reviews are the fastest way to derail a new purchase. A Zendesk study showed that 90% of positive reviews impact purchases and 86% of negative ones do also. Another study showed that even a single negative review has the power to destroy 70% of purchases.”
By Neil Patel, “7 Brilliant Ways to Connect with Your Customers on a Personal Level”

No matter the type of review you get, making sure that you respond is vital. Building trust establishes your personal connections with your customers. And, these connections are the only way to stay in business. Customer retention and development rely heavily on these reviews. So, make sure to keep on top of them. And if you can’t, delegate someone who can.

What is your preferred way to connect with customers?

With so many ways to connect with customers, your success depends on the method you choose. Before making any final decisions of where you are more likely to connect with your customer, do your research. Don’t join Facebook just because everyone else has. Determine how your customers want to communicate, and then put those methods into action. Build that trust, and the connections will flow naturally.

Harnessing the Power of Personalization

In order to harness the power of personalization, you must understand the relationship between a company and an individual. Yes, many who read this are most likely representative of a corporation or business. And, yes, many will look at this information from a marketing standpoint.

After all, personalization is a powerful marketing strategy that is easy to incorporate in daily business. But, the trick is to remember that the power of personalization applies to everyone in everyday life, especially the little guy.

Personalization should also be on a business level. This includes a company’s brand. Your logo communicates not only your company but also your brand and overall commitment to your clients and customers. And, creating consistency by adding your logo to everything you personalize (from name tags to corporate gifts), lets people know you’re proud of what you stand for.

By defining your brand upfront, you help establish your company as an industry leader and key influencer. So, making sure that your logo balances your brand at the top of your industry can be quite the process. Many businesses use networking as a key factor in their marketing plan. It helps to develop a strong feeling of trust between those involved (consumers and colleagues) and plays a big part in raising the profile of a company.

First, let’s look at the advantages of personalized marketing.

Marketing is a business promoting and selling their products or services. This promotion also includes market research and advertising. And, what better way to advertise than with personalization. Whether that’s your branding or remembering the little guy, you need to focus on what best suits your company goals and your customer’s needs and happiness.

standing out in a crowd and remembering the power of personalization

Remembering that little guy is often a struggle inside a business model. But, it is one of the most essential tasks any CEO or higher-up can accomplish. After all, it’s those little guys who make your business grow from day to day. So, marketing to them is necessary to stay afloat in today’s business world.

Your key to keeping clients and customers happy is simple, yet powerful: PERSONALIZATION. With the rise of the digital world and all the technologies that come with it, your marketing must evolve to match. And, the best way to grow is to harness the power of personalization. Find and understand your customers’ individual needs and desires. Once you harness that, personalization will start to flow naturally.

It’s all about knowing who your customer is.

There is a growing intolerance on the part of customers to have fragmented experiences when doing business. And, there is a price to pay for doing so. Research with the CMO Council found nearly half of North American and European consumers will abandon a brand and take their money elsewhere if they repeatedly encounter “a poor, impersonal or frustrating customer experience across channels of engagement.”

Personalization means all the difference in business goals and customer retention. Companies must modify all of their interactions individually to ensure a personalized customer experience. And, if done correctly, there is an undeniable power of personalization that becomes an incredible tool for marketers. Entrepreneur also says, “The first task of effective marketing is to get noticed and stand out from the clamor of competing advertisers.”

So, it is your duty as a business to get your customer’s attention and then keep it. Most companies thrive with this vantage point only because of the power of personalization. Whether it’s an emailed marketing message or a salesperson personally reaching out to a client, personalization is critical in all communications.

Remember this: people will always buy from people, not companies. And, most importantly, people who they trust. Sending handwritten notes or small, personalized gifts is a little extra touch that shows we pay attention to our customers. The beautiful thing about this is that it’s never just an advertising ploy. You really do have to get to know your clients to know about their special events, and that’s when personalized marketing becomes a genuine relationship.

Make it about your customer.

the power of personalization shown on two mugs with one featuring an individual's name

Let’s take into consideration what the effect of someone’s name imprinted on a gift or award does for them. Dale Carnegie famously said, “Remember that a man’s name is to him the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” With that in mind, remember that someone will more frequently drink from a mug with their name on it than one with only a logo or brand. By adding an individual’s name to a gift (even if it also features a corporate logo), it adds personal value and meaning.

Personalization is a popular trend that enhances the customer experience. It starts with knowing the customer, or maybe a better way to say it is remembering the customer. Virtually all (96%) marketers agree that personalization advances customer relationships. Eighty-eight percent say they’ve realized a measurable lift in business results from their personalization campaigns. The power of personalization improves visitor engagement and the customer experience, which leads to more sales.

Making a connection is important at the customer level. Each consumer will see personalization as your way of including them in an essential business circle. Personalization essentially means interacting with your customers and meeting their needs. And, when you use the power of personalization to include everyone in this process, any business will flourish.

Identifying and meeting your customers’ needs.

When handled well, personalization will always strengthen a customer’s experience and, in turn, increase your sales. From offering related products in an online shopping experience to remembering a customer’s name, personalization comes in all forms. So, show your customers that you know and understand their needs and that you have their values in mind when doing business.

From name tags for employees to something a bit more personalized (like a mug) for your customer, everything with a name on it is essential for any business. And don’t forget that this personalization drives instincts, urges and repeat purchases. The more you know about your clientele, the better you can mold their experience.

So, sound off with your customers in mind. After all, meeting your customer’s needs adequately and proficiently is what personalization is all about. Add their names to your products, or simply use their names while doing business with them. Open your doors with a greeting saying, “Welcome, David!” Or, try engaging your online customers with email blasts that are tailored specifically to them. But always start by acknowledging the recipient by name!

The Power of Personalization

an oval name tag showing the power of personalization

Consider this: would you want to hear your name as you walk into your business or a simple, “Hey, you?” The answer is that everyone wants to hear or see their name. Admit it, we all walk into that souvenir shop while we are on vacation and spot the carousel display with the keyrings. We instinctively walk over and peruse the names. And, when we find our name, we’re excited! It doesn’t mean we’re going to purchase the keyring or other souvenirs, but we love to see our name emblazoned on something.

So, how do you think your customers feel when you use their name? Today, personalization is more important than ever as consumers have access to content from a plethora of channels. Among this overload of information, personalized content manages to attract consumers’ interest. While all other information hits them in the face and still gets ignored, personalized content talks directly to them.

Don’t ever think that the power of personalization lies in your marketing schemes. It is not, after all is said and done, about you, the business owner. It is always about your customer and their needs. Now, that isn’t to say that your brand isn’t important; it is. But, remember that little guy? He’s what is keeping your business alive. See him, acknowledge him and most importantly let him know he is wanted.

But, remember that personalization goes both ways. Treat your employees the same way you would treat your customers. Make them feel just as special with using their name in meetings, during conferences or simply in daily greetings. Your personalization of your employees will translate into business models and deals and thus reflects onto you as an owner. And that’s the best kind of advertisement. See, there is power in personalization!

Lastly, consider the power of personalization has on people.

There are always challenges associated with personalization because there is no magic formula that will make it right. At best, there are educated guesses about what your consumers want. If consumers feel a brand is being too pushy, they are more likely to unfollow it. Always try to keep yourself in the shoes of the customers and try to think from their perspective. Personalization helps consumers discover new things and often leads to unplanned purchases. When executed correctly, personalization can have a great impact on your bottom line.

You can’t deny that the customer knows in the end that it is all about them. So, play to that knowledge. Whether it’s your employees wearing name tags and promoting your brand, or a personalized gift wrapped in special ribbons, remembering your clientele individually is the name of the game. At the end of the day, that little guy is the most important person in the room.

So, keep them entertained with your business. Let them know how much they matter. And, it’s simple: just use their names! The power of personalization is truly all about the customer helping you stay in business.

12 Ways to Say Yes to Your Conference

Atendees at a conference, 12 steps to planning your event

Attending a professional conference provides an unmatched opportunity for attendees to build networks, strengthen their work ethic and get new ideas for the workplace. They also give employees a way to get out of the office and increase employee morale. As a result, these face-to-face events continue to make lasting and sizable contributions to any work environment.

From choosing the perfect venue and catering the menu to finding the best speakers, no matter your needs for hosting the best conference, look no further than right in the mirror. Yes, you can plan and carry out a successful event. And here are some easy-to-follow steps to get you started.

1. Objectives and Goals

When you decide to hold a conference, the first thing to do is to figure out the conference objective and set your intended goals. Why would you make the time and effort to plan this type of event without a purpose? You would just be wasting your time and resources.

So, define that objective. It can be anything from informing attendees about the latest tech gadget to helping colleagues learn the best way to write an interoffice email. Not only should your conference have goals but remember that your attendees will also have their goals and expectations for the event. Most people say they attend an event to gain knowledge or increase skills.

One of the best ways to find a conference objective is to ask those around you what they need. Find something that only you can offer and take it from there. And remember that it can start small. A small idea can find a greater purpose.

2. Conference Location and Venue

Three words: remember your audience. Now is the time to consider who will attend your conference. Plan everything with the needs of your attendees at the forefront, and you will be sure they will get a lot of new information and actionable ideas from the conference.

Find a location that supports the number of people invited and has a comfortable environment for your attendees. Be sure that any necessary technology is available. Think through the entire process, will there be space to greet your guests? Are you providing refreshments or meals? If this is a multi-day event, consider the availability of housing. Remember, it’s about a whole event, and you want to be prepared.

Conference Speaker

3. Conference Speakers and Subjects

Your event lineup should be enticing to those attending. Find speakers who will be engaging and exciting for those in attendance. Of course, not all subjects will be exciting, but find someone to make them enjoyable.

There are opportunities everywhere to find speakers for any event. Look inside your company, or ask friends and family if they know someone willing to present on a topic that they might find intriguing. But, no matter where you find your speakers, remember to get them on board with your conference objective. For example, there is no point in having someone talk about fish if your conference is about digital literacy.

4. Setting Your Conference Agenda

Begin to set up the schedule for each presenter. Most conferences post their agenda ahead of time. In addition, many planners now have interactive mobile applications to help you schedule speaker times and other activities during your event. But that is just the beginning.

Take it a step further, and ensure that all attendees have access to a schedule to plan their best experience. Everyone should know beforehand what they can expect from your event.

5. Open Every Door

Make sure everyone has the opportunity to take full advantage of your event. Carefully plan the agenda to create an immersive and interactive experience for all attendees.

If you need to, take a poll on what people expect from your objective and work from there. But, no matter what you do, keep the door open for everyone. Sometimes this is as easy as finding a venue with an open floor plan. Other times, it could be activities to get people moving around and communicating with each other.

Panel of experts at a conference

6. Providing the Whole Experience

Your conference needs to be about the whole experience, not just speakers or significant events. To keep everyone engaged and interacting, remember your audience and objective. A conference is more than just someone standing on a stage talking about their topic. It’s creating a collective mind intent on learning everything they can about this subject.

So, even if you are holding a conference about those previously mentioned fish, remember that the ocean is full of different types of fish. Yes, weird analogy, but here’s the point: keep the conversations going. There more people are engaged, the better your conference will be for everyone involved and have the opportunity to grow and learn.

7. Interactive Conference Events

When you don’t have someone speaking or presenting, provide other learning opportunities such as mentor programs or expert panels. These small group activities offer incredible chances for people to meet, mingle and often find answers they won’t find anywhere else.

And, What is a conference without networking? Please encourage the participants to build relationships with newfound friends and colleagues. While these interactive events can be simple or creative, make time for them, they are significant.

8. Professional Identification

Helping your attendees make lasting connections is a large part of the purpose of any event. So, yes, you need name tags! Make this an easy process by providing event credentials. From badge holders for schedules to speaker name tags, using identification will help everyone involved.

Personal identification is key to any event, including conferences, seminars or trade shows. As an event host or planner, you want your attendees to enjoy networking at your event. And, when they do, they are more likely to return next year. So use quality name badges to put people at ease and make your conference or seminar successful.

Take every opportunity to network at a conference

9. Networking and Socializing

One of the most important things that can happen during events is the opportunity to develop a supportive system of sharing information and services. With each attendee sporting a name badge, people are more comfortable socializing and more likely to have a positive networking experience.

Provide opportunities throughout the conference for attendees to share their information with others. For example, if you offer printed schedules for use with badge holders, include a QR code for easy sharing. But no matter how information is shared, provide as many opportunities as possible for everyone to mingle.

10. Set the Standards

On the event day, you want to ensure that everyone is comfortable and feels safe. When considering a dress code, consider your venue, attendees, objective, and speakers/presenters. Make sure that everyone will be comfortable and still able to maintain your desired level of professionalism.

If your event has activities requiring special equipment, be sure to communicate that to your attendees and, while you are at it, let them know what facilities and equipment will be available for their use.

11. Keep Your Audience in Mind

Whether providing time for breaks or making healthier choices for catered meals, make your conference flow better by keeping your audience in mind. Help your attendees be comfortable while shifting from their daily work life to attending your conference. Plan events with travel time and meals in mind. Ensure multiple options are available when providing food and catering, so no one goes hungry.

It is, after all, about those coming to your event. Make the experience memorable so the participants want to attend another fabulous conference put on by their favorite event planner: YOU!

12. Be Present During the Event

A conference is a grand event, and once it begins, all of the planning is behind you, and hopefully, everything is going well. So don’t disappear into the background now, be sure to participate in all the activities. It is a good idea to ask for feedback throughout the day so that you can take your event planning to the next level in the future.


The Learning Center: A Better Way to Blog

The Learning Center is full of articles about learning how to host the best event ever, networking with colleagues and so much more.

Engraved, plastic sign describing 
Coller Industries Incorporated's event planning and informational blog The Learning Center

Whether you’re planning the best conference anyone will ever attend or hosting a simple dinner party, The Learning Center is here to make sure you are using these tools in the best possible ways. Search content by categories like meetings and conferences, or hop from one subject to another at your leisure. Each informative article is there to help you succeed. As you delve into these different aspects of building your corporate identity, you will see positive changes in your business outcomes, company culture and marketing strategies.

From Meeting Planning to Event Hosting, This is the Place to Find Ideas

Spice up your creativity and find innovative ways to use personal identification. From ribbons at a meeting to name plates for directions at a conference, don’t limit yourself when using these fantastic tools. Improve everyone’s impression with name tags and award plaques. Come find out how to use these personalized tools to help your event be everything it should be. So, if you like personal identification as much as we do, take a look around, we guarantee you will find something useful.

It is so much more than personal identification!

Coller Industries Incorporated's event planning and informational blog The Learning Center

No matter what industry you work in or the size of your company, The Learning Center (by Coller Industries Incorporated) was created for you. We have articles on a wide variety of topics from planning the perfect event to networking to build strong relationships. Most importantly, by putting thought and purpose into everything you do, and using the ideas in this blog, it will teach you how to achieve your company goals. It will also show you how to utilize the tools that you already have to improve your business practice.

Coller Industries Incorporated broadens the blogosphere with a new long-form content platform and renames two product and idea based blogs.

Coller Industries Incorporated's personal identification blog Influencing Identity

Influencing Identity is here to help you figure out how to use name tags and identification products. From name tags for your business to badge holders for your next conference, we have it all. Find out how to use all your identification products at work, while networking and at any event you are planning. Use our how-to articles to get your ideas flowing for working with all of your personal identification.

Coller Industries Incorporated's personalized ribbons blog Ribbon Impressions

Ribbon Impressions provides information about everything from ribbon roll ideas for your wedding to badge ribbons for a conference. And don’t forget about rosette ribbons for your award needs, such as fair or festival prizes. Find all your ribbon needs in one place and learn how to best use them at events and for your corporate gifting. Discover inspiration for using personalized ribbons and find useful how-to articles.

Community Networking & Donating Yourself

Donating time, money or product is necessary to keep in tandem with your community networking.

community networking and focusing on company branding through donations

A community is a group of people with common interests and unique, shared values.

A general definition of community typically appears as a group of people with diverse characteristics who are linked by social ties, share common perspectives and engage in joint action in geographical locations or settings.

Networking is the bringing together of like minds for a like purpose.

Having a supportive system of sharing and exchanging information and services among individuals, groups or institutions that have a mutual interest better defines networking. Specifically, it is the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business. It is fundamental to note that networking is also an active development of these current business relationships.

Donations help those around us to feel like they belong and bring to aid to those in need.

Commonly used as a gift for charity, humanitarian aid or to benefit a cause, donations can benefit not only the receiver but also the giver. These donations may take various forms, including money, alms, services or goods such as clothing, toys, food or transportation services.

But, what do those three things have in common?

Let’s turn to the relationship you find when you look at Coller Industries Incorporated and the Granite Education Foundation (GEF). For nearly 10 years, the relationship between these two companies has been a stable feature in many lives. From recognizing outstanding teachers and other educators to winning over the hearts of students in the Salt Lake Valley, Coller Industries’ reach into the Granite School District is felt by many. And not only felt, but appreciated in a plethora of ways.

Yes, this relationship is primarily built on product and monetary donations. However, it is also formed on trust and fellowship. From name tags for school events to money for shoes and coats for students in the school district, everything Coller Industries gives to the Granite Education Foundation builds into a network of creating community understanding. This understanding reaches far beyond what even we could initially see.

Creating Community Understanding

Understanding the community concept teaches that no matter the setting, there are things which must be done to keep it healthy. These insights are supported and managed by people feeling that they belong somewhere. And this comes with accepting each other and the diversity of those around you. This community understanding makes us responsible for those around us. In turn, this community responsibility not only aids those in need, but it assists everyone influenced by any actions in that community.

Donations are one way that makes us more responsible in our community. And, building trust in our community is not only a requirement but also the best way to maintain any community. This is why we, as a company, are always looking to help out in our neighborhood and surrounding areas. And what better way than in our local schools. The Granite Education Foundation manages the school district where our office is located. Its reach, however, is so much farther. And, by partnering and networking with the GEF, we can extend our reach as well.

Here’s to Thank Yous

Every year the GEF sends Coller Industries tokens of the student’s appreciation for our donations. These wonderful expressions of thankfulness have touched all of us here at Coller Industries. And, in turn, we want them to reach out into our community so that everyone can see the benefits of community networking.

valentines from our community of students in the Granite Education Foundation

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Granite Education Foundation and students from across the district wanted to express a heartfelt thanks for all you do. Enclosed you will find hand-made Valentine’s Day cards our students created with YOU in mind. Thank you for being a part of our last 30 years, and we look forward to spending many more with you.

Yours truly,

The Granite Education Foundation Team

 

Seeing these simple expressions of gratitude helps us to understand what these continued donations provide for our community. And, they also help us to know where we can make more of an impact. Although our brand reaches out in our community and networks with other companies, it is crucial that we focus on the humanity of these donations.

This expression of gratitude gives us the opportunity to learn from other businesses and continue to grow and maintain our networking experiences. And, through this networking in our community, we can show how to sustain a positive business culture of quality and understanding. Networking is vital to this development. We are continually working with our customers to retain and develop working relationships through other donations means as well.

Bringing Community into Networking

By reaching into our community and taking part in networking opportunities for organizations like the GEF, we can see how much our brand resonates in others. We also find how our brand reflects in our community.

One of the most important benefits of networking that people tend to overlook is that it allows you to help other people. Granted, our motives in the professional world are rarely altruistic, but helping someone else with their career goals can be truly rewarding.

By finding and networking within your community, you can become a trendsetter and an industry leader. And, isn’t that what every business desires? To take a lead and direct their community should be every entrepreneur’s dream and goal. So, by donating time, money or product to your community, you are not only giving someone a hand up in life, but you also help your brand. While this may seem a little selfish at first, these donations help sustain the growth and reach of your community. So, don’t take these business relationships for granted. Use them to support yourself while helping others.

Improving your reputation and finding support are also benefits of networking.

If you are successful at networking, you might get a reputation for being a person people will want to talk to and get to know. A good reputation leads to support. You may have valuable information, ideas, and resources those in your network may need. Establishing your desire to assist a colleague increases your credibility. The important thing to remember about networking is the growth you will experience by putting yourself “out there” and taking steps to improving yourself and your organization.

By donating to the Granite Education Foundation and helping them with their needs, we benefit the lives of countless children. In turn, this helps each student’s family retain their position in their neighborhood. And that’s only the beginning of the chain. By paying our efforts forward, and nourishing our networking relationships, we are cultivating our community. We also set higher standards for those around us.

And this is how businesses thrive. So, by donating in your community, your networking experiences flourish, and your business grows. Commit to your business quality and brand all while helping those around you by this simple method: donations.