5 Simple Reasons why you should do your internship in Estonia

In March 2018 I moved to Tallinn, Estonia to do my internship at Katrium OÜ. An Estonian company that does market research and business support services for customers based in Scandinavia, Russia and the Baltic countries. If you are like me and are having trouble deciding where to do you internship, here are five key reasons why you shouldn’t miss out on the opportunity to live in Estonia:

 

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  1. Tallinn looks beautiful

Tallinn is a quickly developing and bustling city with an amazing medieval center that is the best preserved medieval center in Europe. The city is littered with many options to do cultural, sport and other activities. Whether it is the weekend or a weekday, there is always something to do and you will never be bored for a moment.

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  1. Estonia is leading the way to our digital future

With the support of the European Union, Estonia started building its e-government program since 1996 with the introduction of e-banking. And henceforth the country rapidly digitalized many aspects of the government, allowing even foreigners to sign up to be a part of the digitalization with their ambitious e-residency program.

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  1. Work in an international environment

Doing an internship abroad is a great opportunity to gain relevant working experience in an international environment, which will help you secure your future dream job. Estonia’s positive reputation abroad will ensure that a work placement here will make a great addition to your resume.

 

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  1. You will meet the best people in Estonia

Tallinn is a great place for making both local and international friends. It is truly an international city and houses many expats and foreign students. That combined with the city’s excellent night life will guarantee that you will have a great time.

 

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  1. There are many great countries at your doorstep

Given Estonia’s good position and great infrastructure, it is easy to travel to neighboring countries such as Finland, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia. For example, you could take a ferry from Tallinn to Helsinki in Finland and arrive in only two hours. And finally, over 50% of Estonia is covered in forests. So if you prefer nature over sightseeing in cities, there are many possibilities to do so

Are you interested in learning more about a possible internship at Katrium? Send your CV to hr@katrium.eu today and we will contact you as soon as possible!

Let your competitor show you how to perform better

 

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Today’s market is very volatile, nothing is constant anymore. Customers buy from you and tomorrow they change their mind and turn to your competitor. It is vital to fight for your customers and a business constantly needs to innovate how to keep them also not forgetting to attract the new ones. There are very few virgin customers on the market, those that have never bought from you nor from you competitor. Their percentage is so minimal after all that they do not deserve so much attention especially if your reputation speaks for your quality and is thus attract sufficiently new buyers. It is a huge mistake to disregard a huge amount of customers that could be yours – yes, those that are buying from your competitor.

Businesses must stay original, keep on learning and it is vital to upkeep constant excellence in performance. And where best to learn than from the competitor?

If you will understand your competitors, you will better understand customers that you do not have. Knowing your competitor is a key to understanding your customers and their behaviour – why do they buy from you; and as importantly; why don’t they buy from you.

Best market strategies are to offence and defence – surprise your competitors and overwhelm your customers.

What shall I look for?

First of all understand the market size – who are the most important players and how important they are to your customers. There are different kind of competitors, direct and indirect. Understanding both of them will unseal the market potential and will give you a sight of the whole market horizon.

Next things are the pricing, positioning and customer service of your competitors. All important factors that deserve your attention.

So what are the tools to learn from competitor?

  • Visit your competitor – go and explore their store, visit the office, send them an email, call their customer service, act as their customer
  • Talk to your customers – it is amazing how much your customers know more about your competitor than you do, find out if your customers previously have used the services of your competitor and how did that go
  • Take a look in the social media and internet – read reviews, look at the new products and services launch, see their blogs and company press, there is so much information available online
  • Follow up yearly the progress – document the data and benchmark yourself to see yearly trends

Finding out the competitor’s strength and their weaknesses will definitely give you a new perspective. It will give you fresh ideas how to develop yourself in the eyes of your customers, it will give you tools to understand your market potential and customers deeper than ever before and re-evaluate your market position because in the end – it’s a key for better business.

Katrium offers its customers a set of tools to perform a realiable competitor analysis on yearly basis.

What to do if customers do not buy?

pexels-photo-355988.jpegLet’s imagine a situation where Company A asks an offer from Company B for their services. Company B sends their best possible offer to Company A, but eventually they decide to buy the service that they need from Company C. How often has this happened to you and what did you do?

In this kind of situation you can either leave it or you can take a look at the whole picture and ask yourself where did you possibly go wrong. One option is to ask Company A why they chose to buy from someone else instead. Clearing this out will help you to improve your business and maybe even make Company A return when they notice that you care about your customers’ opinions. So, how do you make such enquiries politely and without getting the other party’s guard up? Here’s how:

WHY?

Customers are the ones who bring you the profit, not you or your staff. Understanding customers’ needs is essential – not just because they bring the money to the company – but also because it gives you an advantage over your competitors. No one else knows better than customers themselves what they want. And who ever does the best job in listening to their customers wins the market share.

Talking to and thanking customers who bought something from you is important, but asking “why” from the ones who did not buy from you should be at least at the same level. It could be that they did not like the product, price, selection, customer service or maybe you did not interact with them enough. There are a million different reasons, but you cannot know for sure unless you ask. Assuming that one of the aforementioned issues was probably the reason why they did not buy sends potential customers straight to your competitors’ door.

By asking the customers “could you please elaborate what was the reason that made you go for our competitor’s offer instead of us” will help you to meet customers’ needs and improve your own business. Of course, asking ten customers, who decided to not buy from you, and getting ten different answers will not lead anywhere, but if four or six out of the ten customers name the same issue, maybe you should take a look at that particular aspect of your business/offer and think what you could do differently, better. The more satisfied your customers are with your services and products, the more likely it is that they become your loyal customers and recommend you to their colleagues and partners.

SOLUTION

So, how should you ask this easy question from the customers who chose to go with the third option instead of your offer? The answer is easy; by asking them for feedback. But this takes time and effort. Also; you need to know how to ask the right questions. You do not want to waste your own or the customers’ time with irrelevant questions, which do not provide you with any further information, and thus risk the chance of getting any responses at all. A good option would be to outsource the feedback process to an external survey company that has the resources to create a survey with relevant questions that fit your company’s needs and make the interviews to the customers who slipped away from you.

Here are the two best ways to gather feedback:.

You could create your own online survey. Creating an online survey is an easy option for you to set up and analyze, and it gives a chance to the current as well as potential customers to decide when they want/can answer. The survey could be sent to them by email or you can set it up into your website where everyone can complete it whenever they want to give you feedback or explain what qualities they look for in a cooperation partner.

But if you want to ensure a larger number of answers and to reach people directly then phone interviews are a better option. Making a phone call to your customers has higher survey response rate than online surveys, and what would be a better way to find out what your current customers as well as the lost customers think about your company and your ways of doing things than by talking to them? Also, human contact affects how the survey questions are answered and makes the respondents trust you. On the phone you can ask follow-up questions from the respondents, which helps you to get a better overview of their thoughts and ideas. That way you get more detailed responses which can help you to have a clearer idea of how you are doing as a company.

However, all of us know that most of companies do not have enough time to call all the customers that chose to go for another company’s offer instead of yours and sit all day on the phone asking questions. This is the point when research and consulting company steps in and asks the questions for you. Outsourcing the service to specialist in this field saves you time and gives you high quality analyses. All you need to do is to let the specialists do the work for you.