In my conversations with business owners I come across many common “themes”.
One of those “themes” is a waste of resources…usually on the newest “shiny object” they think will help their business.
I will write an article on what I call “The Shiny Object Syndrome” at another time.
Resources are at a premium as you are certainly aware when owning or running a small / medium enterprise. And by resources I do not mean simply dollars and cents.
Time is a more precious resource as we can never buy any more of it.
So, money and time are your primary resources that as an owner or business person we need to protect and not waste away.
Today my focus is on how to find a target market of potential customers, so you aren’t wasting precious resources on blitz marketing.
So, the two questions you must ask yourself are:
• What do people really want to buy from me?
• What related products are they already buying?
Once you figure this out you will know who is more predisposed to purchase your products/services. Then, you find other businesses with the same customer base who you can customer “share” with.
How do you customer “Share”?
Come up with an incentive and great arrangement to encourage both of your customer bases to shop at, both of your stores.
The basic concept is this:
You want to find existing businesses who have the customer profile that you are looking for to market your products/services to.
Then strike up a relationship with those business owners to work out an incentive for customers to purchase from both businesses.
As a result, you have an audience to market to and the other business owners will generate an added value from their current base.
So, how do you figure this out? There is a great formula from Jay Abraham you can follow with great success.
LV = (P x F) x N – MC
Here’s what it all means:
• LV is the life time value of a customer
• P is the average profit margin from each sale
• F is the number of times a customer buys each year
• N is the number of years customers stay with you
• MC is the marketing cost per customer (total costs/number of customers)
Once you know how much you need to spend to attract a new customer, you will know how much of an incentive you can offer to a business to help attract new customers.
Here is a link to Jay’s website which has fantastic content and is worth visiting:
So, here’s your step-by-step process:
1. Find companies who already have the customer base you are looking for.
2. Negotiate an incentive for them to share that customer base with you.
3. Focus your marketing resources to this group of predisposed customers.
If you need help working through this process, check out our no-cost test drive for the most comprehensive system of marketing tools and resources.
Thank you again for reading. Make it a great day.
Educate them about what, you may be thinking.
Well, consider this, many businesses focus solely on attracting new customers, but you NEED to spend a good chunk of your time retaining current and former customers. These are people you already know to be a good sales potential…they’ve already bought from you!
Take the time to market and sell new products to your old customers and less time trying to sell old products to new customers and you will see a drastic change in your sales, customer quality and branding position.
Here are a couple of key elements to use to retain your current customers:
1. Stay in contact: This means by phone, email, e-newsletter, in person-by pigeon if you have too!
2. Post-Purchase Assurance: This means you need to follow up with customers. Your customers need to feel like they are being supported for their purchase and with the item they purchased. How many times have you purchased a product, then felt completely abandoned? Something as simple as a Thank You note with your contact or customer service information can go along way in retaining a great customer.
3. Deals & Guarantees: Always offer your current customers the best deals and guarantees you have. Show them you appreciate their business or even come up with a club specifically to reward loyal customers. You can also do this with a preferred pricing option.
4. Integrity: Using good business practices and simply upholding integrity, dignity and honesty go along way with customers. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of swindling out there and the safer and more confident you make your customers feel, the more they will trust you and that makes for an amazingly supportive and loyal customer.
There are three cornerstone ideas to a successful business:
* Quality product/service
* Offering useful products/services that solve a problem for or enhance the life of a customer
* Offer subjects your customers find interesting
Use this approach of educating your customers and offering them real information and insight and you will be rewarded with loyalty and success.
Stop wasting all your time on new prospects while your current customers fall by the wayside!
As Jay Abraham says, “Your best prospects are your existing customers. If you’ve been putting all your marketing efforts into acquiring new customers, stop and diverts some of your resources into reselling, up-selling, cross-selling to those same customers. In every way possible – through package inserts, regular mailings, special offers – stay in touch with those customers and get them used to buying from you.”
So, there it is! Educating your customers.
Give us a no-cost “test drive” and we can help you put together the resources and tools to do exactly that. We can help you educate your customers and you can watch the benefits pay off many-fold.
Thanks for taking the time to read this.
Today we’ll talk about shameless self-promotion. That’s right, I said it! Shameless! After all, we are learning from Paris Hilton here.
It’s all about self-promotion! Self-promotion comes in many forms and you can use different tactics to get your name out there. Look at politicians! Talk about self-promotion and in some not so discreet ways, at that. But, seriously, consider some of the major superstars we all know. Madonna, Donald Trump, Howard Stern and Bill Clinton, just to name a few.
We all self promote. Did you raise your hand in class to show the teacher you knew the answer? Of course! That’s self-promotion. This is the kind of self-promotion we are talking about. With dignity, class and the knowledge to back it up. If you self-promote only to prove you don’t really know what you’re talking about, you’re going to lose business.
Natural self-promoters are the former and I want to tell you about the three major traits they have and use to build themselves and their businesses.
- The first is position. You need to position yourself around people who can make a difference in your life. You need to do this frequently. You need to wake up every morning and ask yourself “Who can I meet today who will make a difference in my success?” In fact, go a step further, write it in big, bold letters and tape it on your bathroom mirror.
Who can help me meet my goals?
Is it a prospective customer/client? A colleague with contacts? An association with key members who may become prospects?
Don’t settle into interacting with the people who are the easiest to access. You need to reach outside your comfort zone and there you will find a wealth of new connections that will bring you great success.
- Now, let’s talk about Style. No, this doesn’t mean you need an Armani suit to bring in more business (though, let’s be honest-it wouldn’t hurt) J What this really means is how are you different from your competitors and others in your industry. What makes you memorable with customers?
If you are meeting a lot of people and they don’t remember you once you leave the room, you have a serious problem! This means you have an opportunity to present yourself in a more memorable way.
There are lots of little subtle changes you can make. Reassess your:
- Business cards
- Company message
- Your picture
- Your wording
Maybe even, your hairstyle (of course, now we’re back to the expensive suit, but it really works!)
You get the idea. There are lots of little ways you can work on making your image and business more successful. Also, consider how you sound on the phone and how you greet people at meetings or other events. Think about your 30-sec elevator speech.
- The third trait of natural promoters is repetition. You can’t say it once and leave it at that. Successful self-promoters say it as many times as they need until they get a response. Would you remember a commercial for Coca-Cola if you only saw it once, no! You see it over and over and eventually you head out to the store.
You, also, have to make multiple impressions on those you are networking with in order to build brand awareness. Repetition is in direct connection with positioning. Once you find people to network with, reach out and find hundreds more who can help in your success as well.