In the near future, the way businesses interact, engage, and sell to customers will be entirely different.
As this year draws to a close, we’ve come up with some predictions for your business to look out for in 2016.
Today, businesses can be online 24/7, thanks to all the handheld devices that are available. Operating systems are allowing users to work on the go; this means that the 9 till 5 could soon be a thing of the past. Your working hours could be all round the clock, providing flexibility and a greater work/ social life balance.
On the other hand, some workers could find this difficult, not knowing when to switch off!
Social Media as a News Hub
Not so long ago people learnt about the world around them using magazines, newspapers and television. The rise of social media has opened up a world of opportunities for businesses to access fast and relevant news and information at the touch of button.
This can also have it’s downsides of course – news travels fast! So if something happens within your company, good luck trying to keep it quiet!
As the number of online shoppers rises, new payment methods and systems are becoming available. Credit cards could well become obsolete and replaced with mobile phone apps and other touch friendly devices.
From a customer service perspective, it’s no longer acceptable for companies to tell customers, “we’ll get back to you in 1-2 days”. Now, your business must provide on-demand answers and support. So much so that the expected time for a response is 3-5 minutes.
We predict this will only shorten in the coming years. Social media has provided a platform for customer service and if you don’t respond quickly, you could risk your company’s reputation!
Messaging Over Email
Mobile messaging is simple and accessible. You can use your phone, smartwatch, tablet, and any device for most platforms, and some countries are ahead of others in the messaging space. WhatsApp, Messenger, Weibo, GroupMe, and Snapchat are just a few.
These platforms simplify communication exchanges, yet incorporate the necessary features of email such as attachments and threads. They also offer users the opportunity to be more productive. Messaging is so much quicker than emailing! We expect to see some changes regarding messaging for business in 2016.
Photos, videos, and other visual information is processed 60,000x faster than text-based content.
One can even build a business and media empire out of his or her bedroom via video content. YouTube creators, Snapchat artists, and Vine celebrities take advantage of this shift by consistently producing videos and visual content to their dedicated audience, and there are no signs of this trend stopping.
The next phase for video content, both from influencers and popular creators, is the implementation of data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to create more engaging content. AI will enable businesses to customize and personalize video content for specific individuals, and the next amazing story you ready might not be created by a human.
If you want your business to stay ahead of competitors and on the cutting edge of progress, you need to stay proactive. That doesn’t mean go out and buy every new piece of software on the market, but it does mean you need to assess your customer’s needs and your objectives, then find the necessary technology to move forward.