Training: Don’t Forget Customers
When the issue of training comes up, it usually pertains to employees or prospective hires. Whether it’s training new hires on their job responsibilities or retraining current employees to obtain new skills, employee training is vital, especially in today’s highly competitive and complex environment. However, so is educating clients and prospects. In fact, making them smarter is an objective shared by many State of the Industry participants.
As discussed in the recently unveiled State of the Industry Report, Eleventh Edition (sponsored by KBA), more than half (56.4%) go beyond “answering questions as they come up, providing direction as required, etc.,” educating clients and prospects through instructional newsletters and booklets (57.6%), seminars (50.6%), a section of company website devoted to business tips and FAQs (38.8%), webinars (22.4%), blogs (20.0%), and online videos on YouTube, company website, etc. (8.2%). Among the important insights they shared:
• Don’t forget about traditional topics. Yes, we need to establish our expertise is areas such as variable-data digital, wide-format, social media, etc., if that’s the direction our company is taking. But, subjects such as file preparation, postal regulations, paper, and training on graphic arts software (InDesign, Illustrator, etc.) are often just as popular.
• A successful program is educational, not promotional. These programs must be about what’s most important to clients and prospects, not what’s most important to us. In other words: Resist the temptation to put the focus on our newest capability. Instead, let the program focus on how clients can save money, save time, minimize error, increase revenue, create a very effective marketing piece, etc.
We will be discussing the State of the Industry Report in an upcoming NAPL NewsTalk Live on Tuesday, September 24. For more information, please visit www.napl.org.
Andy Paparozzi Joe Vincenzino