Contrary to popular belief, the most important commodity to a garden business isn't money.
The mysterious asset we're talking about has nothing to do with the monetary economy.
What is it?
Your brand's reputation.
You need to understand where your gardening business stands in the marketplace in order to continually improve your position.
To do this, you'll first need to measure your reputation.
Keep reading to learn 3 ways you can measure public opinion about your garden business.
Online and Print Reviews of your Garden Product or Service
In the court of public opinion, reviews carry a massive amount of weight. Positive reviews can draw potential customers to your garden business while negative ones can drive customers right to your competitors.
The most obvious way to measure what percentage of your reviews are positive and negative is by looking at your overall rating on big retailers' sites. This gives you an idea of what customers think of your garden business while also helping you evaluate where your garden business stands.
So how can you measure your reputation on dedicated review sites like Yelp and Angieslist?
There is more than initially meets the eye on these sites.
Dig deeper and look to identify strengths and weaknesses in your garden business.
Many review websites offer consumers the chance to evaluate different aspects of their experience with a product or company, and your garden business can (and should) use this data to your advantage.
Survey Your Garden Customers
Another efficient way to measure your public standing is to conduct customer surveys.
It may seem like second nature to you, but the fact of the matter is many businesses don't take the time to ask customers what they think.
Simply, if you want to want to know where you stand, you need only ask.
Conducting surveys can be done online via email links, online free services such as SurveyMonkey or even good ol' fashion in-store receipt survey codes.
And remember, people love incentives. Offering rewards for completing surveys will surely improve participation and generate goodwill toward your garden business.
Monitor Social Media Buzz
The utility of Facebook and Twitter cannot be overstated. They are live 24/7, and the pulse of the nation and the world can be measured through them.
Your garden business needs to keep track of that pulse, sensing the high and low points while learning from them as well.
Social media is built on public opinion, so keep a close eye on your Twitter feed to see what people tweet about your garden business.
On Facebook, you can measure "likes" and other data using Facebook Insights. More likes typically means that your brand is growing, but always read comments and respond to them quickly to ensure that your reputation gains clout as your business grows.
Plus, reading comments, not just monitoring your number of fans, allows you to see where you're really wowing your fans, and where you could improve.