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  • #999465
    Brett N/Nerds Computer
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    • Total posts: 76
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    Hi and thanks for looking into my questions,

    I run a small technology company. We are in the process of developing a new product to help small retail chains improve their customer experience. The product will cost about $3k per store. I am thinking we will create an entirely new business around this product as there are limited synergies between this and my technology business. I have a few questions:

    1. Given the product’s purpose is to improve their in store experience what position would people generally hold to be responsible for deciding to buy a product such a product?

    2. Do you have suggestion for how we could purchase a list of such businesses? I already have in mind to approach them via LinkedIn but I know in Australia most people are not on LinkedIn. I do not have a wide network of friends and family and don’t have the budget to employ a sales person that comes with an existing network.

    3. Do you have suggestions on how to approach them? I want to approach them before we finish the product so we know that we are not wasting our time making something they do not want but I also don’t want to be see to wasting their time. How could I ensure I approach them in a way that is appropriate? I would like to call them but with telemarketing being so prevalent I am wondering if it is even possible to call up companies and not be screened out by receptionists.

    Thanks in advance for your answer,

    Brett

    #1219762
    Paul – FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 3,488
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    Hi Brett,

    You could do a website supported by Adwords with a opt-in or you could take out an ad in a trade magazine to see what interest you get.

    You could niche your product, especially initially to see if it had traction eg, to women’s clothing stores or to hairdressers etc

    I feel it would be important to link a better customer experience and a better ROI, if you have evidence. If you saw strong interest, but didn’t have evidence, you could trial some businesses in return for accessing their results and writing case studies.

    Alternatively, you could simply start to reach out to stores yourself ta gauge interest.

    This is obviously not scalable but could get you the answers you are looking for as well as it could put you in contact with people that could refer you to others.

    Some telemarketing companies will develop a list for you with your criteria – some are based here and some internationally. Cost is from $0.50 per lead.

    Cheers

    #1219763
    arrowwise
    Member
    • Total posts: 641
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    In the current retail environment $3k per store sounds like a lot for a chain without a very real and compelling ROI. Can you easily convey these benefits and value?

    There is a growing choice of customer experience solutions hitting the market place, so definitely worth trying to roll out some real test cases (even at little or no cost to the customer) to test your idea before investing too much into the tech side. Just my 1 cent worth without knowing your full idea.

    #1219764
    Brett N/Nerds Computer
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    • Total posts: 76
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    arrowwise, post: 265282, member: 54026 wrote:
    In the current retail environment $3k per store sounds like a lot for a chain without a very real and compelling ROI. Can you easily convey these benefits and value?

    There is a growing choice of customer experience solutions hitting the market place, so definitely worth trying to roll out some real test cases (even at little or no cost to the customer) to test your idea before investing too much into the tech side. Just my 1 cent worth without knowing your full idea.

    I guess my job is to learn how to easily convey the benefits and value.

    I do like the idea of a no cost trial roll out.

    #1219765
    Brett N/Nerds Computer
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    • Total posts: 76
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    Paul – FS Concierge, post: 265279, member: 78928 wrote:
    Hi Brett,

    You could do a website supported by Adwords with a opt-in or you could take out an ad in a trade magazine to see what interest you get.

    You could niche your product, especially initially to see if it had traction eg, to women’s clothing stores or to hairdressers etc

    I feel it would be important to link a better customer experience and a better ROI, if you have evidence. If you saw strong interest, but didn’t have evidence, you could trial some businesses in return for accessing their results and writing case studies.

    Alternatively, you could simply start to reach out to stores yourself ta gauge interest.

    This is obviously not scalable but could get you the answers you are looking for as well as it could put you in contact with people that could refer you to others.

    Some telemarketing companies will develop a list for you with your criteria – some are based here and some internationally. Cost is from $0.50 per lead.

    Cheers
    Thanks Paul,

    I want to know reach out to the stores. Said as a question, how would the telemarketing companies build their list? Can you think of a more efficient means than simply walking around the local Westfield to find out business names?

    Thanks again,

    Brett

    #1219766
    Daniel Courtney Gallery
    Member
    • Total posts: 21
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    Unfortunately a lot wrong with this idea as it stands.

    I am a small retailer (photography gallery and cafe)

    – 95% of stores in shopping centres are chains. No one else can afford the rent.
    – Retail is contracting. No one is spending money without a proven ROI
    – It would take the world’s best salesperson to get me to part with 3k for something not tangible. That’s a lot of sales you have to make to cover it, like about 10-30k of sales depending on margins and overheads.

    You are probably best developing a killer app/presentation/ prototype and trying to sell it to the big boys, or even partnering with them to develop it exclusively. Someone like David Jones might be willing to pay 3k per store to increase customer experience, or even just for a differentiator.

    As a small business, things I will spend on in the customer experience realm are things like Hey You for coffee, where they waive the monthly fee, giving me a risk free trial.

    #1219767
    LarissaPopowski
    Member
    • Total posts: 7
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    Brett N/Nerds Computer, post: 265284, member: 30990 wrote:
    I guess my job is to learn how to easily convey the benefits and value.

    I do like the idea of a no cost trial roll out.
    Hi Brett – with regards to conveying the benefits and value of your product, try and convey what problem your product is solving. Try and be as specific as possible about the problem(s) your ideal customer is having and how your product will help fix the problem. Also, LinkedIn is worth exploring for your ideal customers (retail chain executives).

    #1219768
    Dave Gillen – Former FS Concierge
    Keymaster
    • Total posts: 2,566
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    Hi Brett,

    Walk into a store and ask them the questions from your post.

    That is, initially you’re not selling anything, just having casual conversations relating to your product. Be honest that you’re not ready to sell anything yet.

    Next phase you can offer free trials to get feedback and proof that it works, so then you can build a credible sales pitch (“We’re being used by ___, and so far the results have been ____, and made/saved them $X. We’re only charging $Y.”)

    Best of luck!
    Dave

    #1219769
    businesstrade
    Participant
    • Total posts: 215
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    Many technology companies are moving to a SaaS model. An ongoing subscription requires little risk for the customer and in many cases it is a freemium model where the customer tries and then subscribes.

    Outlaying $3k for a small retailer would be a hard ask especially in this economic climate.

    businesstrade.com.aubuy or sell a business
    #1219770
    HotelProducts
    Member
    • Total posts: 9
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    Brett N/Nerds Computer, post: 265278, member: 30990 wrote:
    Hi and thanks for looking into my questions,

    I run a small technology company. We are in the process of developing a new product to help small retail chains improve their customer experience. The product will cost about $3k per store. I am thinking we will create an entirely new business around this product as there are limited synergies between this and my technology business. I have a few questions:

    1. Given the product’s purpose is to improve their in store experience what position would people generally hold to be responsible for deciding to buy a product such a product?

    2. Do you have suggestion for how we could purchase a list of such businesses? I already have in mind to approach them via LinkedIn but I know in Australia most people are not on LinkedIn. I do not have a wide network of friends and family and don’t have the budget to employ a sales person that comes with an existing network.

    3. Do you have suggestions on how to approach them? I want to approach them before we finish the product so we know that we are not wasting our time making something they do not want but I also don’t want to be see to wasting their time. How could I ensure I approach them in a way that is appropriate? I would like to call them but with telemarketing being so prevalent I am wondering if it is even possible to call up companies and not be screened out by receptionists.

    Thanks in advance for your answer,

    Brett
    Hi Brett, First you need to make sure your product really works, and to do that you will need to offer it FOC to at least 50 sites to trial it. Because that is when you will find out what all the bugs are. I agree that 3k is a very high price, MYOB is only $700per annum. Most software now you pay by the month.
    Finding customers is not hard if the product can prove itself, but at 3k buy in price you could end up with legal difficulties if it cannot do what you are claiming.

    #1219771
    MH08
    Member
    • Total posts: 284
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    When I read the OP – the first negative is “improve”. A lot like others have said, people want pretty much the elusive guarantee that no one can provide in the current retail arena. If it were a subscription based model it would probably be better.

    Call them, we do it all the time just don’t make it a sales pitch, that’s dead. Take a look at some of the clips from Christopher Voss (I think that’s how you spell his surname), his way of thinking is very simple, his books are very recent and he looks for the No instead of the Yes from a negotiation, powerful stuff when someone say’s No to you and gives you all the reasons why compared to rapid firing Yes deliverance.

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