5 Underused Tools for Achieving Business Goals

business toolsOne of the critical keys to building a successful business is to fully utilize the skills and abilities of everyone on your team—from top management on down.

Still, all the talent and motivation in the world will not be enough if certain tools that could help spell success go unrecognized and underutilized – and there are many you could be using.

With that in mind, here’s a look at 5 underused tools that businesses both large and small would be wise to adopt.

Business Software

When it comes to business software, most companies have the bases covered. From antiviral software to office management and accounting software, there are many popular packages to choose from.  Still, many of these software tools are underutilized.

  • Excel is an extremely powerful tool that many businesses are not using anywhere near its full potential.
  • Cloud based software is another example of software that many businesses aren’t yet sure what to do with. And yet cloud-based tools such as SEOMoz and HootSuite have been shown to help businesses grow dramatically while saving both time and money.

Promotional Wall Calendars

In this age of Tweets, texts, and emails, promotional gifts such as wall or desk calendars serve as a tangible reminder to your clients and customers that they are appreciated. Wall calendars are also a great way to promote brand awareness by keeping your company name and logo in front of customers both past and present.

And what better way to alert customers of special promotions throughout the year than to have them printed as red letter dates on the calendar they’re looking at on a regular basis?

Customer Testimonials

Endorsements from satisfied customers can be very powerful in persuading others to do business with your company. And yet many experts in sales suggest that testimonials are being underutilized by businesses for two main reasons.

  • The first reason is that businesses don’t know how to look for and ask for testimonials from their customers – no matter how enthusiastic they may be about the product or service they’ve experienced.
  • The second reason is that once testimonials are obtained, businesses don’t know how to use them to their full potential. When customers give positive feedback about your company, product, or service, ask them if you can use their comments in the client endorsement section of your website.

Related: Find a sales consultant for your business, today.

Online Surveys 

Online surveys are a very effective way for businesses to obtain customer feedback that can be used in testimonials. They are also a way to receive unbiased opinions – the kind of honest and relevant information that can be used to help a company improve in the critical area of customer service.

Effective online surveys should be simple and engaging, and should be designed with the end in mind. Surveys that offer respondents promotional incentives such as discounts or special offers have been shown to have typically higher response rates, as do those that tap into an already loyal customer base.

Social Media

Not all that long ago many companies dismissed Social Media as a fad that would have little effect on business success. Now you’d be hard pressed to find a business without a Facebook and Twitter presence of some kind. Yet, Social Media is still being underutilized.

The beauty of Social Media, if used correctly, is that it allows customers to connect with one another and effectively build traffic for you. Newer sites such as Pinterest are giving savvy businesses a whole new way to connect to very specific target audiences.

Photo credit: newmediadl.cas.msu.edu

Bio: Rick Delgado is a passionate freelance writer in the tech and business space.  For more technology and business updates, circle him up on Google+ or follow him on Twitter (@ricknotdelgado).

Business.com Editorial Staff

Business.com Editorial Staff

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The Business.com Editorial Staff writes on topics relevant to small and medium-sized business (SMB) owners. Posts cover best practices, top tips, and studies that deliver insights specific to SMBs.

Our team has backgrounds in journalism, English, philosophy, marketing, entrepreneurship and management, providing us the opportunity to share unique viewpoints on all things affecting small and medium-sized businesses.

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4 Responses to 5 Underused Tools for Achieving Business Goals

  1. I have to agree that social media is still underused by some businesses even though we already live in a computer world. As I have observed some small business / growing business are the ones who doesn’t used their resources, most especially social media. I don’t know why but for me it is one of the most important thing to consider because aside from it is free to use, you can access it easily.

    • business says:

      Definitely – who doesn’t want a free way to reach customers across the world or in their own backyard. Not to mention potential partners and employees.

  2. I just hired a company to manage, host, and help develop a new website so I can have a more professional presence in the web. But, although I don’t even own a cell phone, don’t have the time or desire to be on all the social networks or blog, they will be setting all these things up for me as well. People will be able to find me on their phones, facebook and other outlets I am not using. It will be interesting to see how this brings more traffic to my site and how it will build the revenue I need.

    I am a grandmother but an entrepreneur who works from home. You are never too old to learn and grow. If you don’t want to be left behind, I suggest everyone considers what Rick Delgado has to say in this article.

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