There is nothing (well almost nothing) worse that spending your valuable time and hard earned cash on a marketing program that gets no results. It's a double-whammy: You've invested time and money in something to grow your business, but got nothing in return and you've incurred the opportunity cost of not doing something else that might have yielded a return.
Sometimes the most obvious things elude us all. With that in mind, here are few things, that cost little to nothing, and are guaranteed to increase your success rate in attracting new business.
- Make it easy to join your mailing list - We talk to clients all the time that want to convert more visitors from their website to leads. The easiest way to do that, have a sign up form prominent on your home page and on every page. Most E-mail marketing packages include copy and paste code to make this easy. Best practices dictate the left or right margin at least. If someone has to go looking for a way to get your blog feed, newsletter or seminar invitations, they probably aren't going to sign up.
- In all your prospect facing communications, talk about what they get, not what you do - The more a prospect has to think about how your services or products relate to their needs, the less likely they are to engage. Your prospects are as busy as you are - don't make them think. Make it clear that they get X when they work with or buy from you.
- Follow up - Woody Allen said it and it is true - 80% of success is showing up. That means responding to an email, a phone call, a referral. You follow up you say? Well make sure you have a follow up process that is documented completely so that everyone in your company understands the timeframe and expected response.
- Include a quote -What are the nice things your customers say about you? Write them down every time you hear one. Then send a note to the customer to ask if they mind if you use the quote in your letters and website (they probably won't). Then use them - have quotes in your proposals, your website, your newsletters, your social media sites.
- Ask for the referral - We have moments of truth with our customers when they say thank you, or great job. That's the time to ask for a referral. A simple "we're always looking for more great customers like you. Do you know anyone else in X area or Y business that you could introduce us to?" 8 or 9 out of 10 times the answer will be "not that I can think of right now"; but 1 or 2 out of 10 gets you a lead and it always gets them thinking of you in the future.
- Have a plan - A written plan. Whether that's a marketing calendar (see the webinar we did on this) or just a listing of things you want to do and the timeframe, written on the back of napkin, you've got to write it down so you can reference it again.
- Use your email signature line - To promote an event, or a special offer or just to get people to join your mailing list. If you send 20 emails a day, that is 100 offers you put out there every week. If there are 10 people in your company doing the same, then it is 1000 offers. And it costs you nothing.
- Get your listing in Google - Go to google.com/lbc and get your business on the map (literally). For Free. And Bing and Yahoo have similar services that are worth spending 5 minutes to do.
I could probably write another 15 or 20 easy wins, but the list above is a good starting point. If you'd like to brainstorm on more ideas, call us. We offer a free 45 minute marketing evaluation that we know will provide you with take-away value.