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Watch: Innovation Spotlight – Area’s Lars Gooch

As part of our Innovation Spotlight series, we caught up with Lars Gooch, co-founder of Area. 

Area provides lead management software for estate agents, to make handling applicant and vendor enquiries quicker and easier.

During lockdown, Moneypenny and Area joined forces to make pre-qualifying leads even quicker and easier for estate and lettings agents.

We asked him his thoughts on the importance of innovation in business:

How do challenging times help businesses innovate?

“I guess I can speak first hand by the amount of new clients our software has onboarded during the pandemic – it’s almost ten fold.  So I think these challenging times almost force businesses to become more innovative.

Lockdown gave good business leaders headspace to reassess things.

“Not just the day-to-day business, but what could they do differently that they’re not doing now. That effectively is innovation.

“You’re thinking outside the box, you’re thinking about things you don’t normally get the time to do, and how you can improve systems and processes within the business.

“Challenging times do make people stop and think. Ultimately, that’s when good innovation comes about.”

How important is it for businesses to keep innovating?

“In a word, essential. Challenging times or not, any business that stops thinking about how to evolve, or improve the product that they’re selling, or their recruitment policy, or their systems or internal processes is effectively standing still.

“Which is effectively going backwards because the competition will overtake you at some point so if you stop innovating you’ll end up going backwards as a business.”

What effect does competition have on innovation?

“I think innovation comes from new start-ups, new companies, and new people on the scene, that are fresh and bright and not too blinkered about what’s happened in the past.

“They’ve not got too much history in the industry and they’re looking to overtake you. So innovation absolutely comes from competition.”

What is your one innovation tip?

To improve the customer offering, you’ve got to understand the customer journey.

“Once you understand it – where the customer enters the funnel, what all those key touchpoints are along the way, through to a transaction stage, and even post transaction stage as well.

“Once you’ve mapped that out, you can look to attribute marketing budgets, processes, customer service, and software. Ask yourself ‘where can software improve my customers’ journey?’.

“Software really comes into a customer’s digital journey, so ask yourself how it can make the journey more efficient and more effective.”

You can learn more about Area’s integration with Moneypenny’s Outbound Calling service here.

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