In India, family businesses, it is estimated, contribute more than 75 percent of national GDP annually.
These businesses represent a wide cross section of industries. Wide range of turnovers. Different geographical presence. Often focusing on a smaller range of products, over the years they grow with deep and selective customer relationships. These relationships assure them of stability, growth and even immunity from competition. Often, it is the promoter who is directly responsible for several key functions (Sales and Marketing being one of them) and acts as the adhesive holding the company together.
One of the key conversations we have had in recent weeks with family businesses is how the Covid situation has turned their world upside down.
Existing clients have shrunk their business, because their customers have reduced spends.
Revenue growth has disappeared. Existing clients have become more difficult to reach out to. And new ones, hard to find.
Hard to find, but not impossible.
These family businesses are now exploring online customer outreach and engagement, as physical presence in the market is still largely restricted and controlled.
Websites are getting upgraded, new content is being put out there. Digital campaigns, outreach on Facebook and Linkedin. A lot of effort to move into a new way of working.
In all of this, one goldmine we discovered is the founder’s own experience.
Founder’s in family businesses have fascinating journeys. And family businesses that have been around for 2 decades or more, have unique perspectives in
- Finding clients
- Managing clients
- Working through ups and downs
- Client testimonials (massively valuable)
- Client success case studies (key differentiator)
When we start speaking to these entrepreneurs, their own awareness of the power of their customer relationships and impact comes alive.
We have had content writing teams create powerful narratives and create great newsletters and emailers as a tool for these founders to engage with old and new clients.
What we started to see is a remarkable open rate and click through rate for these pieces of communication. And thereby increase mind share and positive recall.
While the whole internet marketing piece is driving brands to create and share more content, we often struggle with creating new content. And this is where, the experience of founders of family businesses, becomes a very powerful source of quality content. But its eye opening that they didn’t realise the power of their own experience in creating powerful stories.
We are all brought up on stories. They are the foundation of our ability to empathise, internalise, and grow. In some times, we count on stories to find motivation and direction.
I would encourage experienced entrepreneurs, especially in the B2B space to start working on these stories that come from their rich experience, and share these with prospective and current clients to build their brand in these times.
Blogs, case studies, interviews, testimonials: these are all easy to produce well and distribute. Good luck.