Chances are, the number one reason more people are not doing business with you boils down to this: they do not know you exist.
They may not know you have the perfect solution to their problem. Although you may know your product or service is fantastic, unless they know it too, you will not get their money.
There are hundreds of genius ways to start attracting customers faster. Grouped together, they are called “Platform Building.” Here are three of them that will get you more attention, traffic, customers and money in the next three weeks or less.
1. Create a contest.
Come up with something people can win and the rules for winning. It may be a week of getaway, it may be a month of your services, the prize itself does not matter so much as long as people see it as valuable enough to motivate their participation.
Then market and promote the heck out of the contest. The real benefit to you is not that someone wins, although you should publicize that heavily. It is not even how many people who might enter. It is the marketing attention you can get because you are even doing it!
Ideas for how people can win the contest:
• Have them post on your social media page some kind of testimonial.
• Name as winner the customer who refers the most new customers.
• Create a treasure hunt for adults or kids around your town (could be done with photos, as in “Where is this?”).
• Online only? “Hide” clues on your website or require participants to acquire obscure research related to your business, e.g., a tire store might invite customers to create a mini-documentary film or essay on the history of rubber or when tires became made out of rubber, etc.
Remember: it is the attention you get by hosting the contest itself that matters to you, not the specific details. But do make a fanfare when you finally award the prize.
2. Create a mailer.
If you have a mailing list (and I sure as heck hope you do!) that features your past customers’ physical emails, send a unique and interesting mail piece. If you only have their emails, adapt accordingly.
Inside, you can offer:
• A customer appreciation discount if they buy before the end of the month.
• A special gift they can get (something small but relevant) if they stop by your shop before the end of the month.
• A simple, sincere, maybe hand-written thank you note.
• A hyperlink to some special video you put on your website for them.
• An invitation to VIP customers only party.
If you are doing this via email, the way you get them to open the email is with the subject line. Probably half will never be seen by the intended recipients anyway, but try subject lines that are refreshingly different or focused on them:
• “What I like best about you, ”
• “The Most Surprising Thing I Know About You,”
• “Why I Don’t Believe and You Shouldn’t Either”
• “3 Tips to Help You Get More from ”
3. Build an email blast.
Stand in front of a video camera (even an iPhone will work) and teach customers something they do not know but that will help them get more benefit from your product or service. It might be the thing you keep shaking your head over, “Why don’t they ever learn?”
If you do not want to be on camera, maybe one of your employees can do it? Your goal is to record three to six mini-videos, four to five minutes long that have real, tangible, practical value to your customers. The production quality is not as important as the speaker’s smile, commitment to truly serve and valuable content.
Email all your customers and prospects saying, “We’ve got a brand new series coming out to help YOU. To watch the first one…”
Then, four to six days later, release the next one. Repeat. Each time you release the next video, write ALL the people on your list that you have done so and enthusiastically describe the benefits they will get from watching it. “In this video, you’ll discover how to…”
It is like a micro-course, for free, compliments of you. Of course, at the end of each one, invite them to your website or offer a discount/promo code just for watching or give them the chance to sign up for a free eBook or whatever in return for their name and email address. (This works because some of those who watch it will not be on your list; and because when those who are choose to re-enroll, you will know who your active, interested customers are.)
What other great ideas can you think of? You can put together a contest, a mailing or a blast in less than a day and the amount of business you attract can be phenomenal. You could roll out one of these ideas per month for the next three months. You could make a lot of money this year and satisfy a lot of customers.
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This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editors.
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