Georgian Capital Market

Capital market formation faces several problems: small volume of transactions and low liquidity; undeveloped informational, depositary and clearing networks; indirect governmental intervention through National Bank of Georgia (commercial bank securities control) and Ministry of Finance (control of non-bank financial institutions); high level of risk and the absence of business ethics. Besides the economy is characterized by instability not fully following free-market rules and despite recent expansion in trade volumes, the level of security emissions is still low. Due to these reasons capital market is still weak and does not satisfy needs of the economy.

The success of capital markets depends strongly on an appropriate and effective functioning of joint stock companies. Despite the fact that currently their number in the economy is 1773 forming 2% of all legal persons registered at the tax department, GSE could not transform into the alternative to banking sector and the means of efficient fund-raising. Georgian business environment is not yet ready for participation in capital markets. The reason for this is that the managers lack the knowledge of capital market functions and fail to use all the fund-raising benefits it provides. Therefore the levels of security emissions and exchange activities remain low. Currently Georgian financial system follows German model, where bank loans are highly favored at corporate level. Since further improvement of corporate governance is among the country’s principal interests, the Corporate Governance training program was organized by GSE leadership that aims to increase the awareness of benefits an organized stock exchange provides.

It is worth noting that mass privatization scheme that was implemented in Georgia did not serve as a factor for triggering development of stock exchanges in the country. Privatization vouchers were not listed at stock exchanges and transfers of ownership rights were mostly done through individual direct transactions. Eventually, approximately 1300 joint stock companies and half a million shareholders emerged; however the role of capital markets in this process was minimal. Even at the second wave of privatization capital markets were left out of the process and major part of privatization was conducted mainly through auctions, buy-outs and direct-sale methods. Only in 2002 first medium-scale transaction on the sale of 36646 shares (10148 GEL) was made on stock exchange.

Resumed privatization process uncovers new prospects for Georgian securities market. It is expected that new wave of privatization will trigger GSE, since nowadays holding of privatization auctions at GSE is backed by the adequate legislative bases. In addition, there were substantial foreign direct investment inflows in previous years and even larger inflows are expected to take place next year (approx. 2 billion US dollars). It is strongly believed that this will substantially contribute to the development of the capital market and improvement of investment climate in the country. To meet new demand the trading sessions must be held on a daily basis.

Be Successful At Direct Marketing The E-Mail Way

As I write you are probably sitting on a very usual list of customer contacts – past, present and potential (my 3 Ps of customer type). So how do you get the most out of it? Your next step is to utilise this database by communicating with your customers in the most economical way – e-mail.

E-mail marketing is not only the cheapest form of Direct Marketing known to man it is also the quickest way by which you can communicate with customers and the most effective method (see below) but also you can ‘tailor’ you message to suit:

The Customer Profile
The information you wish to impart
All the while bearing in mind that the purpose of your e-mail is to:
Build a business rapport with existing customers
Encourage customer loyalty
Encourage repeat business
Encourage additional business from existing customers
Introduce new products to existing customers
Advise special offers/ sales and more to existing customers
Acquire new customers
Before you begin creating your ‘missive’ that you wish to e-mail then you need to remember key factors about the e-mail screen.

First of all let’s ponder a moment on who the mail is from. Yes, it is you (idiot I hear you call me) but there is a couple of important questions that must be considered here.

Is your business known to the recipient?

If it is are they likely to want to read what you are e-mailing them about?

If you business isn’t recognised by the recipient then again -

Are they likely to want to read what it is you have to say?

Whichever, former or latter, you need to have a distinctive ‘subject’ – the next section of an e-mail.

If the recipient has agreed to receive information from you (recall your database laws!) then you still need to be concise about what your following message is all about. So it could be something as simple as Newsletter No:23 or Special Offer or Sale Now On – or something along these lines that is attention grabbing.

The same but perhaps even more importantly so, the subject needs to make the recipient want to read on as to what it is you are actually contacting them about.

Thus your third area, the message itself, needs to be as concise as possible, not beat about the bush, no waffle, just warm interesting information within which, or at the end is a call to action. This can be as simple as asking them to open up an attachment that might have further details, a discount voucher perhaps, a revised/ sale price list, full details of a new product…you get the gist of it. Or it could be a ‘hotline/ VIP’ telephone number. A website address or even a discount code to enter when buying on-line.

A word from the wise. People don’t just open up attachments ‘willy-nilly’, especially from an unaccredited source. There are many horror stories and warnings about opening up an attachment from an unknown business so make certain that the message area of your e-mail assures people who to open an attachment will not bring down their entire computer.

Engagement Marketing: Changing the Relationship Between Businesses and Consumers

A hot new spinoff of social media marketing has altered the way companies are engaging their customer base. It’s called Engagement Marketing, also known as “participation marketing,” and is a strategy that is specifically designed to engage consumers and allow them to have an influence on the brand. It is no longer about companies relying on passive marketing and persuasion to gain new clients; it has become an interactive two-way street.

Branding has also become easier and allows for businesses to cultivate more personal relationships. As we move more towards a “relationship age,” and away from an “information age,” interactions between consumers and companies are becoming more closely connected, and the value of these relationships is now more important than ever.

1. Branding: Give Your Company Exposure and Build an Online Presence

Branding is an important aspect of every successful business. Recent studies show that building a social media presence can boost your company’s search engine rankings. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is only one part of the overall ranking, and other factors such as the popularity of your website are included. Social media links and blogs can help give your company exposure, as well as build an online presence by engaging consumers and giving them an opportunity to have a voice. The easier it is to find your company and see that other people are involved online, the more business you will get.

2. Lead Generation and Networking: Getting New and Potential Clients

Engaging customers and building your brand online is becoming an important facet of everyday business. By using online networking tools such as live chats, blogs, and webinars, companies are able to become more transparent and trustworthy. By offering ways for people to interact on a personal level, consumers will begin to trust your products and services.

Also, the more attention your website receives, the more potential your company has to gain new clients. People tend to trust companies that have a strong online presence over companies that don’t have active websites or social media profiles. If your company Facebook profile has a lot of “fans,” or supporters, it will bode well for cultivating new clients.

3. Product Research: Test Your Products and Services via Social Media

Creating a direct and open dialogue with customers allows you to ask them how they feel about your products and services. By including comment fields on your blog and sending out surveys or emails, you can get a good idea as to how your company is doing and how satisfied your customers are. If you were planning on coming out with a new product, but weren’t sure how your loyal customers would receive it, you can ask them online. Perhaps you can offer your fans on Facebook a trial period for your new product and see how customers react. It will save you time and money in the long run, and you can get your product on the market faster.

4. Improving Customer Relations

By improving the way you interact with your customers, you can improve how your business operates. As you find out new ways to incorporate your customer’s opinions and feedback, you can change your business model to adapt to market trends.

There are many ways to gather this information such as including a field on your website that allows for customers to send you an email and tell you about how you’re doing. If you have a blog, leave room for readers to comment on your articles to get them thinking about the services your company offers. The more opportunities you provide your customers with to give you feedback, the easier it will be to meet client needs and expand your business.