Here at Intentional Marketer, when we get a new email subscriber, they are asked to fill out a quick survey asking what is the biggest challenge you struggle with in your business? I am sure you will not be surprised when I tell you that the overwhelming commonality we see in our responses is this:
Get more customers.
Watch the video:
Maybe you started your business thinking; this will be fun! I’ll post a few things on Facebook and the sales will magically start rolling in! For many new business owners, distributors, affiliates, crafters, freelancers, consultants, coaches, realtors….basically ANYONE who sells something for profit, has learned the hard way that this is simply not the case. (myself included)
Having a great product or service that you are sure will be able to help so many people is not good enough. Having a website, Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter profile is not good enough. Customers will not find you ~ YOU have to go and find the customers!
And, when you are doing business online, not only are you responsible to find the customers, but you will get them to buy by attracting them to you, not pushing your sales message on them uninvited.
Now what do you do?
Here are 5 ways to find customer for your business:
- Create a Plan – Yeah, yeah, yeah….I know you don’t want to hear it but I’m going to say it anyway: You need to figure out your ideal customers.
Years ago, I started a business in the direct sales industry. When I would jump on the weekly calls, I would hear many questions called out, “who do I try to sell my product to” and they would answer ANYONE. EVERYONE could use this! Well, that simply is not true. It CAN’T be true. Does a 6-month old baby boy wear mascara? Would a 70 year old woman be interested in testosterone supplements for body building? Probably not. (I’m not say these examples couldn’t happen, we are just talking about the majority, the top of the bell curve)
We call this the “spray and pray” method. Spray (spam) out your message to anyone and everyone and see who bites. Don’t you think this is a waste of time? I certainly won’t spend my time on this tactic. I want people who are actually interested in my product.
So, think about your current customers. What do they have in common? Do you see a trend? If you don’t have any customers, take a piece of paper and write down gender, age, marital status, children, income, education level, ethnicity.
Then, break that out into interests. What do they care about? Where do they live? What do they read? You can get really deep with this, but you should get the point.
- Find and Follow Potential Prospects on Social Media
Now that you’ve identified that person who is most likely going to purchase your product, now it’s time to figure out where are they hanging out online? Do you see people you think could be helped by your product in a particular Facebook group?
Go to your biggest competitor or peer in your industry. Start looking at the people who liked the page. When you go to the person’s profile, you can see what groups they belong to. Join the same groups where it makes sense. You can also see what Pages they like, so like those pages too.
On Instagram, do your hashtag research. For example, if your ideal customers is a young mom looking to get in shape, then check out hashtags around #fitmom or #momoftwo. Search by hashtag and start following Instagram users who use that hashtag. Do not try to sell on social media. Instead, try to build relationships. Like and comment on their posts. Retweet or @mention their tweets. Your goal is this: to be seen as a friend.
Selling is a lot easier when people know, like and trust you.
- Provide Your Product or Service for Free in Exchange For a Testimonial
If you are a service based business, offering your service for free can be a great way to get new clients.
You’re probably thinking, how does offering something for free make me any money? This is part of the trust factor. You will be offering the service for free in exchange for the client providing you a detailed account of the benefits and/or results from your service that you can publish on your various channels.
This is a great way to get new customers because it assumes that your service does what it says it does, provides great results and yields happy customers.
How to find someone to test drive:
- Ask a friend ONLY where your friend meets your ideal customer profile
- Join Facebook groups in your industry niche Ex: If you sell fitness services and/or products, join a free healthy eating or fitness group; If you sell marketing services, join a small business or entrepreneur Facebook group. Answer questions and provide value to the group and you will begin to create relationships
- Attend local groups like the chamber of commerce, Meetup.com groups, etc.
- Target and Engage with Top Influencers in Your Industry on Social Media
This is a great way to bring awareness to your brand. Find accounts of users that are thought leaders in your industry. Then, follow them and engage with their posts, tweets, photos, etc. Be consistent so you can start to be noticed and recognized when doing so.
Write a blog post about a particular problem in your industry and the solution to it. Use a quote and link your influencers website in your content. Then, send out a tweet or post mentioning them. Chances are they will share it out to their thousands of followers!
Example: I just wrote this article on Facebook and how Digital Genius rocks their Facebook game so well! @DigitalGenius
- Treat Your Customers Right and Publicly
Happy customers who get their issues resolved tell 4 to 6 people about their experience. (Source) This means it’s a great way to spread the word about your business. Don’t be a “wizard of Oz” behind the curtain when you respond to your customers. Shout it out! Reply and address people by name. Talk to them like a real person. This will show others that you are trustworthy to work with and buy from.
And don’t forget – warm referrals are like gold!
Check out these stats thanks to Kissmetrics, if you’re not convinced:
- Only 37% of brands received good or excellent customer experience index scores in 2012. Whereas, 64% of brands got a rating of “OK,” “poor,” or “very poor” from their customers.Source: Forrester Research
- As many as 89% of consumers began doing business with a competitor following a poor customer experience.Source: RightNow
- Up to 60% of consumers will pay more for a better customer experience.Source: Desk
- Average annual value of each customer relationship lost to a competitor or abandoned – $289.Source: Genesys Report
You can grow your business if you put in the effort. You just need to TRY! Are you up for the challenge?