June 2016

channelchatgeneric120What are the highs and lows of working with the SMB customer? We decided to find out by asking a few questions of some industry leaders, giving them the opportunity to answer some or all of the questions, and not surprisingly, they had some interesting insight on what makes the SMB tick. Our panel this month:

Kelley120by Lindsay Kelley, Prospect Builder

It’s hard to run a small business. As a small business, we know that well! As a provider of marketing services to office technology dealerships, many of them also considered small business, we also see it secondhand. Many employees do double duty and we’re always looking for any edge we can find to help us be more productive and improve how we do business.

Roderick120by Brad Roderick, TonerCycle/InkCycle

You’re a revenue generator. Your company is relying on you. Your team is relying on you. Your family is relying on you. Your customers are relying on you. But who or what are you relying on?

Square9120by Lauren Ford, Square 9 Softworks

It’s time to get serious about your small and medium sized business (SMB) customers. You closed the initial sale – great – but it shouldn’t end there. SMB customers are frequently looking for that differentiator that will allow them to compete in a larger marketplace. Providing continuous support to SMB purchasers will have a tremendous impact on their overall business strategy, while encouraging additional sales opportunities for your company. By helping the SMB customer find ways to operate more efficiently, they can free up resources that will provide them with the edge they’re looking for. To maximize success in the SMB market, consider the following four areas of support:

McIntyre120by John McIntyre, The Imaging Channel

Can’t live with ‘em, can’t live without ‘em – the documents and records your business runs on (what did you think I meant?), and the need to process, store, and archive those documents and records for a variety of different reasons. While small businesses have been quick to embrace digital technologies to reduce costs, speed up business processes, accomplish more with less, and meet the digital communications requirements placed on them by customers and regulators, many have a dark shadow lurking over their operations: thousands of archived pages of paper files and their continued reliance on those archives for many business transactions. Some small businesses, while operating on mostly digital documents day to day, persist in printing a lot of pages, and often still rely as much on the manual filing and storage of printed documents for archival purposes as they did in the pre-digital era.

Cummings120by David Cumings and John M. Zindar for The Imaging Channel

There is good news: the digital age affords the opportunity to exponentially raise ROI on marketing expenditures and to deliver unheard of revenue and growth. Although most firms are slow to embrace the opportunity, big gains are available for the early adopters of new thinking in digital marketing.

HP120by Stephanie Dismore, HP Inc.

It’s often referred to as the rule of three — the principle that suggests that things that come in threes are more compelling, satisfying or effective. Whether we realize it or not, many people, when given three choices, have been conditioned to believe the one in the middle is often the best. Technology vendors keyed into this rule long ago, and it’s become almost standard practice to bundle products and services into three simple groups: good, better and best. Guess which one is most popular? The middle one. Most of us look at the entry level, good package and decide it’s simply too basic. And because we’re always trying to curb spending, the high-end, or best choice could be more than we need. But that one in the middle? It often looks just right.