Why in­for­ma­tion is cur­rency

Australasian Timber - - ASSOCIATIONS - Prin­ci­pal, The Mar­ket Bytes

THE BIG­GEST chal­lenge any busi­ness has in this dig­i­tal age is to un­der­stand the cus­tomer. There are nu­mer­ous ar­ti­cles and blogs in the dig­i­tal space that say the con­sumer has changed. I would be one to agree with that viewpoint.

But, as I have learned, if we are not care­ful we will end up eat­ing our own heads off in try­ing to re­spond to that sense of ur­gency that seems to be per­vad­ing ev­ery­thing that comes from the bl­o­go­sphere and the dig­i­tal en­vi­ron­ment.

The big ad­van­tage of the TADC (i.e. the tim­ber ad­vice and dis­play cen­tre) is that it has a lot of re­search and data (that lay well con­cealed in its ar­chives) that can help us have a great deal more con­fi­dence about what we can do, and what we should be fo­cus­ing on to un­der­stand the cus­tomer and es­tab­lish real time re­sponses and ser­vices.

Data and re­search is a crit­i­cal el­e­ment of what we have done over the years and it will con­tinue to be an im­por­tant el­e­ment mov­ing for­ward. And data we have lots of it. We just need to make sense of it.

First and fore­most the data points to one in­trin­sic fact, that when it comes to the home for con­sumers, ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion is key. In the dig­i­tal age in­for­ma­tion is ev­ery­where. Read­ing and ac­cess­ing in­for­ma­tion on line is one thing talk­ing to some­one is as much con­fir­ma­tion as it is in­te­grat­ing ex­pe­ri­ence into the over­all analysis.

This is per­haps why the TADC gets so many peo­ple con­tact­ing us as their project evolves. In fact we are edg­ing close to 25% of the ren­o­va­tors in Vic­to­ria con­tact­ing us. For the tim­ber mar­ket this is a sig­nif­i­cant pro­por­tion of peo­ple want­ing in­for­ma­tion and pro­vides a guide as to how we move into the fu­ture. The mar­ket sees us as a hub for in­for­ma­tion and this pro­vides us with in­sights that can be used to align the dis­tri­bu­tion chain to the needs of the mar­ket in a far more fo­cused way.

The fact so many con­sumers, ar­chi­tects and builders con­tact us on a daily ba­sis for in­for­ma­tion in­di­cates we are a bell weather for the in­dus­try. The re­search con­firms this. His­tor­i­cal trends of ac­tiv­ity in the cen­tre were re­flec­tive of trends in the mar­ket some months later. To have an anec­do­tal bell weather that can then be sub­stan­ti­ated with ad­di­tional re­search is a pow­er­ful tool for those who elect to use it.

So, as we progress with the changes in the cen­tre and build­ing on the hub role the cen­tre play us­ing re­search to of­fer in­sights to ar­chi­tects, builders, mer­chants and of course con­sumers will be front and cen­tral to what we are do­ing. This builds more in­for­ma­tion as to what prod­ucts and ser­vices are needed and so for the TADC and in­dus­try in­for­ma­tion will re­ally be a form of cur­rency that we at the cen­tre will use much more.

If any­one would like us to share what and how this in­for­ma­tion can be used please do not hes­i­tate in con­tact­ing us at the cen­tre.

By Eric Siegers

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