To sell well, you must truly love your customers

Benetton Oliviero Toscani

I was an immigrant several times in my life. I immigrated to Nigeria, USA, Italy, France, and South Africa. At some points I was also an illegal immigrant because, when I was younger, my attentiveness to bureaucratic deadlines was lacking. Personally, I found living in different countries to be a wonderful experience and I hope my children emigrate in the future.

However, not everyone thinks about immigration as positively as I do. There is currently a lot of negative content towards immigration. It is a prolific and harmful trend shaping the global political and economic scene. Regressive attitudes towards immigration are correlated with tariff wars and fragmentation of bigger entities, which impact all levels of business.

Most companies are trying to avoid any kind of direct involvement in any such trends. However, the damage to sales sometimes can not be avoided. Governments have an enormous power to build the soft brand equity for their economies, but they can also cause harm. When a government spreads a divisive message regarding immigrants, this is interpreted as having a negative bias towards other cultures. Members of these cultures represent a large customer base and their response to these messages results in poor sales. Business is based on universal respect and trust, which can be fragile.

My advice to all companies is to make an active effort to minimize this damage. They must include different cultures in every aspect of the business whenever possible. There is no need to participate in the public discussion. What is needed, however, is companies taking positive actions towards different cultures. For 2019 I am suggesting that every company makes an effort to become multicultural by being more accepting, more open, and less homogeneous.

To sell well, you must truly love your customers; and to maximize real growth potential, everyone must be your customer. Successful companies never accepted borders.

Have a great 2019!

Written by: Nikola Tosic
Publishing date: 31 Dec 2018