With increasing innovative products and services, it’s not easy for a business to survive, unless it makes an effort to analyse the market trends and maintain a competitive edge.
According to Anupam Gupta, chairman, IT and Innovation Committee, AIMA (All India MSME Association): “The growth of products or services depends on brand value and customer engagement.”
Gupta underlines the need for a change in business approaches—technology adoption, marketing, value building, etc. He feels there are several challenges an MSME must address in order to grow faster in the market.
In a highly competitive world, brand building plays a major role in offering the essential differentiation for a company’s products and services. Despite maintaining good quality, many SMEs have not been able to build that brand value. “There are other brands leading the market to strike you off the market,” says Gupta, warning them about the competiton.
A brand cannot be built without consumers. The customer engagement process takes time, effort, and adaptability. It is vital for MSMEs to understand the fundamentals of connecting with the customers to promote and publicise the brand. Anupam says: “More the number of customers, more recommendations will be made in the community, which results in building the customer loyalty.”
Changing marketing trends
With social media, the advertisement space is evolving fast. Gone are the ads in a petite corner of newspapers or journals. Social media marketing is the way forward. Anupam feels that the MSMEs are not exploring alternative avenues to market their products.
According to a GoDaddy and Redshift Research survey in 2015, 63% of small businesses don't have a website and 76% of them plan to have one in the next two years. While ecommerce is gaining prominence with the increasing mobile users, MSMEs are neglecting the platform as an avenue to sell goods and services due to their lack of awareness.
Lack of vision
Long-term vision is critical for sustainability of a business. Customers tend to be inclined towards a brand that offers the best and consistent experience. As Anupam says: “Consumers prefer products or services that have stable performance than those which provide temporary outputs”.
Picture courtesy: Nathan Sudds (freeimages)