Why Empathy Could Be the Key to Unlock Your Online Business Growth as a Small Business owner.
Why should every Entrepreneurial parent be empathetic to the needs of their customers? How can empathy be the key to unlocking your online business growth? Read on to find out!
The first time I heard the word empathy was from my mom. She was recovering from an illness. And someone used the word empathy to describe his feelings towards my mom and her condition. It was not so much the word empathy. But it was how my mom said she felt due to that particular word. Someone had emotionally identified with my mother’s pain. There was a general feeling of community and sharing of the burden. Indeed, you always remember how someone made you feel.
As a business owner, you also need empathy for your customers. You should feel and share in their pain and use your entrepreneurial mindset to devise a solution that meets their needs and delights them. If you have reached a point in your entrepreneurial journey where you have stopped feeling empathy for your tribe and your customers or have compassion but do not know what to do, this article is for you to read.
Empathy Is the Starting Point for Your Business Model.
Are you a reluctant entrepreneur? Thrown into the beautiful world of ‘Do-it-yourself’ income generation through no fault of your own? I empathise with you because that was my journey. Sometimes entrepreneurship is thrown at you. You have no choice in the matter.
You could also belong to the group of individuals with a knack for seeing opportunities around them and being able to monetise those opportunities as products that solve problems.
It really does not matter how you came into entrepreneurship because once an entrepreneur; the entrepreneurial playing ground is level. Your success is, in some respect, proportional to your ability to connect with your dream customer. And your ability to move your customers away from pain or towards pleasure.
As a third-generation entrepreneur, I saw first-hand the benefits of owning a legal entity that also generates income for the family. Families flourish and prosper when income is consistent. Especially for entrepreneurial women, this literally makes a difference between educating and supporting girls’ education.
As an entrepreneurial parent, you have the independence and freedom to create a business model that works for you and your family. At Hippos to Horses Marketing, we advocate the ‘Parents who Biz’ Model, a sequential business framework that lets you build your online business from the inside – out.
The ‘Parents who Biz’ business model lets you build online businesses that generate income for your family and serve the community. And whilst allowing you the time, freedom and flexibility to be present for family and loved ones.
Empathy Leads to Product Development and Design Thinking.
There is a new concept that has come up known as design thinking. What is design thinking, you ask? Design thinking is a repetitive process in which you seek to understand your customers, challenge any assumptions you may have about them or yourself, redefine problems and finally create innovative solutions. As a good business practice, you can make a prototype and test it, and if successful, go ahead and market your solution. If not, design thinking is an iterative process you can start again.
The exciting thing about the design thinking framework is that you must start with the customer in mind. The first step is to empathise with the customer. Do you see a pattern here – empathy is a building block for successful product development.
Entrepreneurial Parents! be empathetic with your customers. Empathy will help you develop ideas, concepts, and products that will better meet your customers’ needs. And if you think about it, if you’re a unique person, there is no one else in this world like you. Your empathy towards your customers will also be exclusive to you. Therefore, the products (goods or services) you design will be distinctive.
Right there, you have your competitive advantage and value proposition all wrapped up in one bundle of empathetic DNA. Your business will serve its customers with products, customer journeys, and customer service that competitors will find very hard to replicate. Your business will stand out because it has its own unique empathetic DNA.
Empathy for your customer will motivate you to consistently improve on your current offering only because you want to give the very best value to your dream customers. Empathy from this side of the world looks like a solid business strategy.
Think about it, entrepreneurial parent, you not only design distinctive products but you will, with time, improve their quality.
It’s Kaizen, the Japanese word for continuous improvement. You have the best product today, but because you connect deeper with your customer, you still feel their pain and continue to harbour a strong desire to serve them.
Business parent, you will naturally lean towards redesigning your existing products or innovating new products. You will have an attitude of always giving the best. And isn’t that what Enterprise is all about? Marketing the best product at the best price that your customers can afford?
Empathy Leads to Business Model Innovation.
Just like there is product innovation, you can also innovate on your business model. A term often referred to as business model innovation. Some of the outstanding business model innovations companies have been Amazon, Uber, Airbnb, Netflix
What Is Business Model Innovation? Let’s keep things very simple. Business model innovation is the art of enhancing your business’s competitive advantage and value creation by making synergistic changes both to an organisation’s value proposition to its customers and its underlying working model.
It’s just designing the model of your business. Hippos to Horses Marketing operates under the big umbrella of an online business model. Maybe in the not-so-distant future, we may consider opening offices where we will have face-to-face interactions with you. If we do that, then our business model will be a hybrid.
How does empathy fit into business model innovation? If you want to be the hand that helps your customers across the bridge, away from pain to joy, you will have to develop a business model that works for them.
You can ask simple questions to audit your current business or the business you want to start. How are your customers accessing your product? How are you presenting your product? Is it easy for them to come across your online properties? Is it easy for them to interact with you? Can your customers easily perceive your value proposition?
What is your business model, and is it the ideal model for you and your customers? When answering these questions, put yourself in the shoes of your dream customer – be empathetic. Articulate your customers’ fears and desires as only you can. Change their fears to hope and give them solutions to dispel fear and meet those desires. As best you can as an entrepreneurial parent
Final Thoughts on Why Empathy Could Be the Key to Unlocking Your Business Growth Online.
We have seen the reasons why empathy could be the key to unlocking your business growth online.
Empathy is an innate quality that we all have. You can empathise with others to be the best entrepreneurial parent possible because empathy will help you to stand out from the rest of the industry. You will not only have a competitive advantage over your competitors but a superior business value proposition.
And if you can, then go ahead and say, right, if I have been able to use my design thinking to empathise and improve my current products. Better still to innovate new products. I can apply the same thinking to design a business model that works for my consumers and me.
You get to decide what your business model is and what niche you want to target with your company’s products.
Remember to grow and nourish your empathetic entrepreneurial mindset. And it’s not a weakness. It is a strength. In a previous blog, I mentioned how humility is a strength, these soft skills that people often overlook are the weights that tip the balance in your favour. Your business will flourish.
After all, empathy could be the key to unlocking your business growth online.