Business As Usual: 3 Areas Technology Has Altered

In recent years, businesses have had to change and adapt in ways previously unimagined. Many new companies are now birthed online and never see a brick and mortar store. With social media saturating the digital world, companies can interact with their consumer on a level not possible before. Customer service is on a new level of personalization and consumers have more say in what products they want to see. Businesses are also able to communicate with each other in ways not possible before technology permeated industries. Included here are a few ways that technology has changed the way business is conducted.

Marketing

Choosing a target audience for marketing and being successful at reaching them has always been a delicate dance for businesses. However, with recent data mining techniques being implemented, companies get a more intensive glimpse into how their products relate to their consumers. Never before have box stores been able to predict pregnancy in young women or market menopausal products to the exact demographic.

Technology creates a world where Google, Facebook and your phone know more about you than your loved ones do. Imagine a world where Google pitches you ads for feminine products at a certain time of month or even knows when you suffer from depression based on a family loss or seasonal change. With nearly everything being documented online or through apps on your phone, every life event could feasibly be marketed to at the exact moments you are most likely to be receptive.

Customer Response

Social media has created the ultimate interactive space for businesses and consumers. While in the past, companies could pitch their own products and ideas to the consumer, social media has given customers the chance to pitch right back. Focus groups are quickly becoming unnecessary as Facebook becomes a platform for surveys and questionnaires.

Not to mention, you now have the chance to deal directly with customer complaints in a public forum. While the less-charismatic business owners may suffer, those who seek good PR should benefit from this opportunity. Failing to respond to customer service complaints could result in your reputation taking a nosedive overnight, while simultaneously, good response can put out fires before they take off.

Business Communication

One of the most brilliant things technology has done for business is allowed it to reach new vistas it has never before seen. International business meetings can now be conducted quite simply through Skype, Google Hangouts and more. With the power of cloud systems online, you can have multiple employees working on a single project from different places.

Businesses no longer have to hire employees from a single geographic location. With more and more business being conducted online, employers can find specialized personnel from around the globe. You could be hired and paid for a job without ever meeting your employer, which leaves room for countless possibility and plenty of scams.

Larry Alton (@LarryAlton3) is an independent business consultant specializing in social media trends, business, and entrepreneurship. Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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