- by Trish
Recently, I took a workshop that REALLY helped me to be able to not only help my own business but also be able to offer helpful suggestions to my customers for their businesses. During this workshop, one of the tasks that were asked of me was to contact my customers with either an email or a telephone call asking pre-selected questions.
Most (if not ALL) of my customers are very busy with their businesses during work hours. So, I decided to setup a simple survey with a link sent, in an email. With the information collected from this survey I have been able to help several of my customers with suggestions. One such suggestion follows here…
6 Cost Effective Solutions to Gain New Customers
1) Make sure your business has social media accounts setup (and that you are using them properly). Twitter, Facebook (Fan Page), and Google+ accounts are (at the very least) what ANY business truly needs. LinkedIn is another good one to have. Pinterest and Instagram might also be considered, depending on the age range of your potential customers. Here’s a guide to using social media for marketing, from start-ups to existing businesses.
2) Testimonials from past and present customers posted on the different social media accounts AND published your website are an EXCELLENT means of getting the word out. All businesses depend on word-of-mouth advertising. Testimonials are considered the “formal form of expression” helping you tell your potential customers what others have had to say. Don’t believe me? Please, check out the importance of testimonials …and, how to use them effectively!
3) A press release can be a business owner’s greatest tool, if used correctly. If you make yours sound more like a story …and submitted to your local newspaper, a press release could gain you FREE advertising should the paper publish it. With so many newspaper writers losing their jobs now, you’re more apt now than ever before to have your story published … IF you make it sound interesting. Here’s 29 press release examples from pros.
4) Coupons 4) Coupons are a great way to gain new customers! You might even consider offering coupons at random. Everybody loves a sale or a special, so why not offer one? You could offer a printable version from your website and even set it up to no longer display once the coupon reaches the expiry date. Here’s an easy way to create and distribute coupons effectively online.
5) Full MONEY BACK GUARANTEES keeps those hard-to-please customers from hurting your business.
I’ve had it COST me to refund an unhappy customer in full. In the end, I was GLAD I did it. Turned out that the customer I refunded was lying about their business location, and I only found THAT out when sending their full refund by registered mail. If that was a lie, what else was this business owner lying about? Distancing myself from them saved me from any potential lawsuit, never mind any nastiness they might have spread by word-of-mouth about MY services.
Unhappy customers COULD cost a business far more money than a customer’s payment could EVER gain you. Here are 10 ways to guarantee more sales and conversions.
6) Pay for referrals – personally, I like using the following quote on all my invoices; “the greatest compliment you could give us is a referral”, because that is how I truly feel. Referrals are as complimentary to receive as a testimonial. However, by paying for referrals you may receive a lot more. Make sure you qualify EVERY aspect of your referral offer, making sure there are no misunderstandings. Happy referrers make for more potential customers. Here are some referral program examples for businesses of all types.
Being on the lookout for workshops to help local businesses that are either offered online or locally could be another great means of helping businesses to gain new customers.