Monday, March 31, 2014

Non-Profit Organizations


Non- Profit Case Study

A registered non-profit is managing several yearly events to create awareness and receive donations for its causes. 
Although the overall economic impact to the community of a successful event can be measured in the millions of dollars, it is about more than just money – it will help the lives of those among us who need it the most. The organization pledges to end child hunger, keep youth sports safer, put our community back to work and put on display the dignity that is so proudly our tradition. 

1. Improve the donor feedback process
2. Increase the number of potential donors joining their loyalty program and mailing list
3. Increase sales and improve the visibility of events and their sponsors
4. Decrease the number of negative public comments on online review sites
5. Increase the audience of at-event donations and gauge more feedback from participants
6. Provide incentives for increased sales to potential sponsors
7. Manage information and metrics to measure customer satisfaction and brand reputation

The Results

1. Increased donations and pledges by 15%
2. 95% increase in real-time feedback
3. Identified top 10 trends associated with the event
4. Improve by over 20% the number of people signing up for mailing list.
5. Reduce negative comments and online reviews by 60%

The Loyal Channel Solution- What We Did 

The Loyal Channel comprehensive solution, helped to capture the data needed to analyze and help the organization understand donor and participant issues and respond to their needs in real-time. Via strategically placed displays and media advertising, donors or participants were encouraged to pledge, locate the Non-Profit’s newest event, purchase raffle tickets or leave detailed written feedback using the SYE digital comment card using their smartphone. All responses are received instantly so any problems and issues can be resolved. All feedback is then transferred to the Loyal Channel Social Sentiment Dashboard. 

Loyal Channel’s Social Sentiment Dashboard helped the organization monitor and analyze written feedback from the SYE digital comment card, as well as, social media comments about the events and organizations. The solution helped the Non-Profit analyze information and metrics to identify trends, communicate with participants and manage brand reputation. 

Interaction and feedback has greatly increased, the mailing list has grown and they have been able to quickly respond to comments, preferences and trends. Loyal Channel’s data analysis and reporting capabilities have provided information that will allow them to improve their program for next year’s events. 

To deploy a free trial or solution in your organization to improve your customer service and sentiment, contact us at: 
experience@interstack.com or +1 (206) 826 2216
www.loyalchannel.com - Customer Experience Management Solutions


Saturday, March 15, 2014

Fraud: Something that can be managed


Fraud is found in nearly every industry, with different levels of employees: from peons, to upper management, to the board of advisors. We often think of fraud on a large scale, such as the scandals within Enron and WorldCom - and people like Charles Ponzi and Bernie Madoff will forever be immortalized. As a matter of fact, all of these examples were mentioned in my accounting classes.  

However, fraud isn’t always detectable, nor will it ever go away. There will always be someone wishing to climb the ladder of power. Management can put measures into place to protect their company, as well as its shareholders, and keep them secure.

Pyramid schemes and changing a few numbers around are only a couple ways fraud in business is executed. What is vastly different now is that companies make more use of other businesses, partners, and contractors to get their job done. Employees feel more pressure than ever to perform up to par, with employers keeping their wages as low as possible, while giving management significant raises and bonuses. They aren’t necessarily complete sociopaths set out to scheme and embezzle. In fact, they probably aren’t having a laugh at the thought of getting away with it. They might even be ashamed. These are ordinary people who start out small. Maybe they steal supplies from work and work their way up to fudging the numbers. Maybe their house is being foreclosed on. Maybe they’ve got medical bills piling up. Or maybe they really are just greedy bastards.

While at the same time fraud is easier to pull off than ever, thanks to the internet (Hello, BitCoin), punishments are more severe than decades ago. Have you seen the number of years in a sentence for someone committing a white-collar crime, versus a violent or deviant crime? It’s a bit surreal how much longer someone can be locked away for committing fraud. Other punishments include: losing licenses, losing customers, and a harmful online reputation of the company. Laws have even been put into place to protect the welfare of victims from fraud. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act, (one of the first things mentioned in my Accounting class in college), passed after the Enron and WorldCom scandals, to protect investors from fraudulent accounting practices.

So, how do you control fraud from happening? Well, you can manage it as closely as possible. You can implement a system of checks and balances within each department. You can download anti-spyware/malware onto your computer. But ultimately, fraud is detected from the inside. Misconduct is often reported by “whistleblowers”. Whistleblowers are to be protected by law for reporting misconduct in business; however, employees are fearful to step forward because of intimidation and threats to their job and/or livelihood. It’s best for employers to assure their employees that stepping forward and alerting management, including the CEO, is the necessary thing which should be rewarded.

After all, when the damage is done, you won’t have your job, reputation, or freedom. 


Read more about fraud here


Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Sales Meeting: How to Sell your Case



In our previous blogs, we’ve talked a little bit about where sales take place and how to prepare for a sales meeting. This post is going to be about how to conduct yourself in a sales meeting, as well as, best practices. Here is our (brief) list for sales best practices.

1. Show up on time

            Basic enough. However, if you are running late, make sure to call or leave an email with an apology and an expected time of arrival. This makes things a lot easier for the other person if they know how to rearrange their schedule.

2. Dress Appropriately

            Research the other company and get a feel for what their atmosphere is like. If they are a startup or work in an environment where business casual is the norm (almost all of Seattle), jeans and a nice blazer work well. And, you know, if you work from home and do most of your sales over the phone go ahead and wear your PJs. Although, studies show that if you dress the part you will act and sound more professional and achieve better results.

3. Be Honest

            If you are honest about your company, products and services, you will be respected. No person, product, or company is perfect. Give a run down about your product with carefully curated demos and case studies. Don’t bother embellishing. When the time comes, your client will soon find out if you’re full of value or just full of it.

4. You’re Not Smarter than Your Client

            You may be an expert in your field, but coming in acting like a know-it-all is a huge turn off. Letting your client know how you may be of assistance is one thing. Telling them what’s wrong with their business is a sure way to get the door to hit you on the way out.

5. Your Sob Story Doesn't Matter    
              
            While personally, I will feel empathy for your dog passing away; it’s not going to sway my decision whether or not your product is going to be a good fit. First impressions happen within the first 20 seconds of meeting someone. You have maybe an hour tops to sell yourself. You need to showcase your professionalism first. Strong relationships, and even friendships, develop over years. And while we’re all human, I’m not interested in purchasing a friendship.

6. Don’t Be Pushy

            After your meeting, send over a summary of the conversation, your company and products. After that, it’s their call. If you keep badgering them about making a decision they will feel pressure and most likely will choose to stay safe than sorry. Remember, it’s not in the bag until they have signed the dotted line and forcing someone towards a decision is probably going to do more harm than good.

Again, these are just a few basic principle’s to guide yourself through a productive sales meeting. You've heard it all before. Be on time and dress to impress. Don’t sell yourself short, but don’t exaggerate either. Don’t humiliate your client for not partnering with you and don’t try to have them empathize in order to purchase your product. Lastly, don’t force them to make a decision. Sales can take as little as a few weeks to a few months. Be the trusted advisor they need to make an expert decision.