From boutiques to restaurants to hotels, entrepreneurs often face similar challenges when it comes to managing operations and growth. That’s why, in celebration of National Small Business Week (May 5-11), Comcast Business recently rolled out programming and resources to help small business owners ensure their technology services work for them.
As part of the effort, Comcast Business invited South Florida small business owners to Tequitzlan in Miami Beach for networking and a lunch-and-learn webinar produced in partnership with Entrepreneur, “Turn Small Biz into Smart Biz: Technology for Growth, Productivity and Customer Experience.”
The webinar featured Entrepreneur VIP Contributor and Dynamic Communication author Jill Schiefelbein, who led a panel on how technology can help small businesses be more efficient, more effective and more productive.
- Anna Copley, co-founder of Seattle-based Pickleball Central, a family-run company dedicated to providing quality pickleball products and experiences
- Ben Jo VandenWymelenberg, founder of Woodchuck USA, a manufacturer of high-end wood products
- Christian Nascimento, vice president of Product and Premise Services at Comcast Business
Together, they examined the many ways tools like the internet, voice commands and cloud-based services help level the playing field for small businesses.
Smart Infrastructure: Put the right technologies in place so your business is set for growth
Life happens fast at a small business. For VandenWymelenberg, he recognized early on the need to “build a scalable machine” as he managed his sales pipeline and cash flow forecasts. Small business owners don’t have time to pull these reports manually, but when they’re automated through technology, it gives the owner those insights immediately – allowing them to make smarter decisions more quickly.
Copley cited Comcast’s Voice Mobility phone services when discussing how her business grew 64 percent over the last year. Not to mention, she was travelling internationally and working remotely most of that time. She said that, in addition to 20 percent of her sales being attributable to calls, her ability to communicate with her customers from the same line no matter her location was imperative to her success.
Smart Customer Experiences: Meeting and exceeding customer expectations is essential
In today’s marketplace, the customer experience is everything. Embracing that spirit, Nascimento affirmed the importance of customization and personalized offerings to keep customers coming back. He described an action sports store in Philadelphia that uses Comcast’s Xfinity X1 Voice Remote to host viewing parties, which help build customer relationships and trust, and allows the store to better cater to their needs.
Copley talked about how services like Video Monitoring help people feel more connected to the sport of Pickleball, which combines tennis, badminton and table tennis, and the Pickleball Central brand after her team placed cameras at their courts.
“People are able to see who is at the courts and decide if they want to go play,” she said. “During one of the tournaments, we had over 76,000 views.”
It’s these types of rich engagements and higher-quality interactions ultimately drive the bottom line.
Smart Customer Service: Leveraging tech to enable you to better server your customers and run a more efficient business
Thanks to smart devices, the world is just a tap away. Since easy accessibility is now standard, it’s critical that small businesses act responsively and expediently, according to VandenWymelenberg. Utilizing automated customer relationship management tools helps, but it’s even more important to add personalized human touches to let customers know you value them. This builds loyalty in the long run.
Nascimento reiterated that, whether it’s through internet or voice or phone services, Copley and VandenWymelenberg’s stories are bright examples of how businesses big and small can incorporate advanced tools into their operations to do what matters most: serve their customers.
For more information on Comcast Business products and services, visit business.comcast.com.