Customers (or clients) are the most important part of any business. How do you get more than what you had last year? I love the saying that goes “Keep doing what you’re doing….and you’ll keep getting what you’re getting”. So how do you find more customers and improve your business in 2019? Here are my 3 top tips:
1) Improve/Increase Your Online Presence
Are you still spending money on Yellow Pages or newspaper ads? If they work for you, great. But consider adding (or increasing) a presence online. If you don’t have a website yet, get one. And if you DO have a static website, it’s time to add a blog-component. While a static website is a good start, keeping that site ranking high on google (and having your potential customers actually FIND it) will get tougher over time. This is where a blog will help, so long as it is updated regularly with new and relevant information.
Websites, once created, are relatively cost effective. They work for you 24-7 and have their greatest effect when a potential customer FIND them. Unlike newspaper or other printed ads, your site is most likely going to be seen by interested customers who are looking for you at that particular moment
If maintained and updated, it will take either time or money. If you can do some of the work yourself, obviously it will save you the former. But publishing regular blog posts and updates about your services will get tougher over time. Thats when a service like textbroker will come in handy. For as little as $20, you can have a nicely written article which many of your customers may find interesting.
Adding a website or blog is a simple way to improve your business next year.
2) Improve your business via referrals
Assuming you do a good job with your current clients, having these same clients refer their friends and relatives to you is a logical next step. There are several things you can do to encourage referrals
- Start a mailing list
- Start an e-mail list
- Offer a customer appreciation reward
- Offer discounts for referrals
For example, if you are a store front business, ask your current customers to leave an email to you can send monthly specials or news to them. Stay in touch with your best customers and encourage them to return.
3) Join a local Business Referral Network
All major cities (and most smaller ones as well) have organizations which can help you improve your business. The most obvious ones are your local Chamber of Commerce and Better Business Bureaus. These are great for getting added exposure for your brand and they can help answer some of your business questions and concerns.
Even more effective at getting you actual referral business are local chapters of the B.N.I. (Business Network International). These are local groups, usually between 15-50 local businesses, whose sole purpose is to give each other business.
For example, if you’re a travel agent, imagine creating a close relationship with a wedding planner, a florist, a photographer and a hair salon. You’ll be able to receive AND GIVE referrals to and from these other businesses at will. Local BNI chapters often have these members in their group, waiting and ready to give YOU business. (If you’re in Winnipeg, and would like to increase your business by referral, contact me anytime 204-333-2202)