Getting and keeping new customers is always a tall order for a small business, one that seems to involve more than a little bit of luck. There are allegedly plenty of tried-and-true marketing schemes and strategies out there, but there’s never a guarantee that they will work. Some strategies may work just fine for some companies but may be dead ends for others. You should be looking for strategies that work for your company, but you should also be ready to change things up if things aren’t going your way and you aren’t attracting new customers. Here are just a few things that can help get things back on track when you find that you cannot reach your customers.
1. Identify Your Target Audience
The most important part of finding new customers is knowing who your potential customers are. To do that, you should try to identify as many segments as you can. For example, a clothing company will need to know not just what kinds of people buy their clothes, but why they are buying them. They should know where else they shop, what their hobbies may be, and where they might live. This isn’t easy, and there certainly is no one perfect way to do it, but it will at least give you an idea as to who your potential customers are and where you should be focusing your advertising and marketing efforts.
2. Listen to Your Customers
When it comes to finding out what your clientele really wants, sometimes the simplest approach is the most effective. Thanks to social media, people are able to voice their opinions more easily than ever, and they aren’t shy about what they have to say, either. If your business has its own Facebook page (and it should), take the time to poll the page’s fans about the kinds of products and services they might want. Actually, you may not even have to poll anybody, because chances are that some of your customers have already posted their thoughts already. In any case, pay close attention to what they have to say.
3. Give Something Away
Free or heavily discounted products can be great for attracting new clients to your business. While most people are reluctant to take a chance on something that is being sold at its regular full price, they are more likely to try something if they feel like they have little or nothing to lose. They might like what they see and become a repeat customer.
4. Stay Engaged 24/7
In the past, businesses only had to concentrate on tending to customers during regular working hours. Thanks to the Internet, those days are long gone. Many people do their shopping online these days, often during odd hours. While you don’t need to tend to all the customers who want to do business late at night, you should have a system in place that allows your business to be operational at all times. Of course, you should also advertize this capability whenever you can.
5. Use a Combination of Marketing Strategies
Part of making sure that you attract as many customers as you can is adopting a number of different marketing strategies. This means using Facebook, Twitter, email, word of mouth, and other advertising and marketing strategies to reach different people in different demographics. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket.