Just before Christmas last year, Guy took the entire GSM team and their other halves for a long weekend at Soho Farmhouse to celebrate 20 years in business. As the weekend drew to a close and the anecdotes (I’m saying nothing!) were exhausted, Guy turned to the future and tried to imagine where we would be in a further 20 years.
Everything is changing and changing at an incredible pace.
The ubiquity of connected devices, social networks, biometric technology, blockchain and artificial intelligence will inevitably have an impact on how the traditional model of asset finance operates. From checking client backgrounds, identifying new leads, to instantly gauging their level of interest, to automated underwriting and instant decisions. It’s a brave new world, but one a million miles from the business Guy had spent the past 20 years building. But you don’t stay in business that long unless you’re prepared to adapt and change.
So when we decided to review our online presence, we spoke to a few of our clients and asked how we could improve our online offering.
The more we talked, the more we realised our clients were pretty happy. Yes we could update the design and functionality of the site, yes we could be more active socially, but fundamentally they liked talking to a human not a robot. Every business is unique, as is each and every deal. The feedback was that our clients valued our relationship-driven approach, our quick response times and our independent status meaning we were able to recommend the funder most suited to their needs, often being able to fund what others could not.
We won’t be replacing our sales team with robots nor will we be providing instant quotes with hidden costs and provisos, but we do want to find and help fund new customers, using our tried and tested methodology, but updated to reflect the changing world we live in.
The age old methods of direct marketing certainly have a role to play, but increasingly, prospects are more proactive, searching out deals via word of mouth recommendations over a longer period of time. Potential customers prefer to assess the credibility and relevance of a supplier thoroughly before even engaging in conversation. The way people search for finance has changed too, how they rate, review and share experiences within their network. How they interact and gauge relevance and empathy through your activity (or inactivity) online. These signals are powerful messages we telegraph to the world. Impressions are made in an instant but can last a lifetime. So we want to get it right.
We’re going to share the insight we’ve gleaned from over 20 years of helping to fund some of the UK’s fastest growing businesses and household brands. The trends and innovations we identify through our research. Interviews with the inspirational people we’ve met and the lessons they’ve learned, as well as showcasing the features and benefits of the products we use to raise finance.
We won’t use the blog as an excuse to spam you with generic promotional information about our incredible rates and swift turnaround.
We’ll let our customers do that for us, we’ll just try to keep you informed, entertained and engaged!