Wednesday 14 August 2013

How To Make Your Business Cool (And Why You'd Want To)

Cool Business
If you're starting a new business venture, then there are probably many things that you want to be. You'll be aiming to be professional. Hopefully of course you'll manage to be successful at some point. And it then follows that you should also be profitable.

But something that not many business people tend to think about is being cool. Just as in school however, there is something to be said for being one of the popular kids - it's just a shame that it's still just as difficult to be in the in-crowd as it ever has been. Here we will look at what it takes to be cool in business, at why you might want to be, and at how you can manage your coolness-factor with aplomb.

Why be Cool?

First of all, let's examine why a company might want to be cool - and the reason is simply that it will make your business more popular with a certain type of customer which in turn will help you to make more sales and even to get let off the hook when things don't go to plan.

This is something that will be more useful for some companies than others of course, and the question you have to ask yourself at this point is who your target demographic is: if you're aiming to provide B2B services then you might want to try and look professional rather than cool. On the other hand though, if you're selling fashion then being cool is almost a requirement - as you'll need to be switched on and up-to-date with the latest trends in order to provide clothes that will make the people wearing them look cool.

For everyone else in between, an element of cool seriously doesn't hurt. If you can poke fun at yourself, if you can try things that are a little different, and if you can set yourself out as fun and exciting, then you'll find that you generate more interest in your business and that more people want to find out about what your business do. The average Joe is always going to be attracted to the company with the less "stiff" image - why do you think that Apple is so much more successful than Microsoft?

How to be Cool

So the question is then, how do you go about giving your company that edge and avoiding being stuffy? Well generally that means having fun with your business and being a bit creative - whether that's through your advertising, through your web design, or through your packaging and copyrighting. At the same time being good at what you do and valuing customer service. If someone is frustrated at you because they can't get through to speak to a human being when they have a problem, then that's going to make you look out of touch and disinterested. Instead, make sure that you put your customer at the forefront of your business so that they can develop a relationship with you rather than seeing your organisation as "cold" and "faceless".

The pitfall to avoid here is trying too hard to force yourself to be cool - if you make it too transparent that you're trying to impress a youthful crowd then you'll only embarrass yourself and them. If you've ever cringed at old celebrities trying to appeal to kids through the medium of rap (normally sporting a backwards baseball cap) then you'll know the kind of vibe that you're trying to avoid.

The secret to being genuinely cool then is not to try too hard. While it might sound like a cliché, the answer is to be yourself. That means on the one hand that you can relax and loosen your tie when you're in meetings, and that you can create advertising that's a little off-the-wall and unusual; but at the same time it also means not trying too hard to be cool and not losing sight of your target audience.

The great news right now is that as a small business and a start-up, you are inherently going to be cooler than your larger competition (people love underdogs). The secret is to make sure that you remember why you got into the business in the first place, and to make sure you keep that enthusiasm even as you grow.

About The Author: The founder of Berkeley Sourcing Group, Greg Fisher, is the brains behind this article. When he is not busy working, he enjoys reading books or playing a good game of chess with his friends.

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1 comment:

  1. I never thought businesses could be cool but after reading this article, I can see the advantages it can bring. Great article Greg!


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