You don’t need a ton of customers to make your business successful but you do need to have a passionate following.
People who are passionate about your business are essential to your success for two reasons:
- They are very likely to buy your product or service over and over (repeat business doesn’t add any cost to your marketing budget)
- They will tell their friends about you (remember, referrals are the best kind of marketing)
It is much harder to land new customers than it is to appeal to satisfied customers who have worked with you in the past. Do a good job with your current customers and they will volunteer to do all your marketing for you.
They will reach out to friends and family to rave about their experience. They will tell them how you went out of your way to help them and make sure they are satisfied. Most importantly, they will convince them that your company is the best one for the job.
Here are some things you can do to ensure you start to build a loyal customer base.
It Starts with the Product
The best way to build a solid following is simply to put out a great product. It allows you to completely differentiate yourself from your average competitors.
How would you rate your customer service? Do you accept returns? Your return policy can help people be more confident in their purchases especially for big ticket items.
As powerful as marketing is in its ability to transform a business, it starts with the product. Make sure your product, whether a website, a store, or a service, is top notch. Make sure it is a product that customers fall in love with and would want to recommend to their best friends.
Ask your customers for feedback. When you are falling short of your customers’ expectations, many times they will let you know. A lot of times though they simply just walk away from your business never to come back. Connecting with your customers and asking them for their feedback will let you understand how to better serve them and continue the relationship.
Word of Mouth Marketing (WOMM)
Satisfied customers are much more likely to tell their friends when they are impressed with your business. Customers don’t take recommendation lightly. They are much more likely to buy from you if their friends recommend you. In fact, Forbes states that 92% of consumers will believe their friends and family over any form of marketing.
With that in mind, here are some ways you can help facilitate word of mouth marketing:
- Make sharing easy: We’re in a sharing world, that means your business needs to be easily shareable online and offline.
- Incentivize sharing: Can you give customers a monetary incentive to share? Giving customers credit for inviting their friends and family means that you get the initial customers and their those they’ve invited to use and interact on your platform.
- Ask customers for their feedback: Getting customers involved in your business makes them feel connected. They feel like they have a personal stake in the business’ success. By asking them for feedback on your product or service, you get to better understand your customers but also make them feel like they are part of the family.
- Give them something to talk about: Not all businesses are sexy. Many don’t easily lend themselves to excitement shareability. What they do have is the ability to go above and beyond the rest of the industry (usually in their customer service), enough to spur conversation and good will.
Building Your Following Online
Whether you have an online presence or not, you know the importance of it. Social media as a marketing tool is critical to building and maintaining a strong relationship with your customers.
It’s important to remember that you are asking people for their most precious asset: their time and attention. That means you have to provide value online that warrants their attention.
From creating blog posts and videos to sharing interesting articles and facts, you have to engage your audience no matter the platform. Create content to share on your website and share it with your Facebook followers.
Engage them in conversations, ask them to give you feedback on your content. The aim of social media is to connect and provide value to your followers.
With the introduction of social media, email marketing’s effectiveness has not been as strong as it once was but it remains a powerful tool. It is one of the only uninterrupted avenues you have to talk directly to your customers. No social media giant can take that away from your with an algorithm change.
If you haven’t started building your email list, you need to start right now. If you have a physical location like a store, then incentivize your customers to give their email. On your website, add email magnets (offers that entice your visitors to give you their email, something like a free ebook).
It remains a marketing pillar because it works. You can use it to send coupons, updates, and get feedback from your customers. Your mailing list is also vital as you grow your marketing footprint.
Adding a new social media page? An email list helps you market the new page to those who have already supported you in the past.
Bring it All Together
We’ve discussed an email list, social media accounts, and word of mouth marketing. It's important to make sure all your marketing efforts are cohesive.
Your Facebook and Twitter should lead to your website. Once visitors are on your website, make sure to capture their emails. Cross promotion between email and social media helps you grow your following and have multiple contact points with your followers.
PS:Need marketing help?
Midtown offers a free marketing consultation. We can build a marketing plan that works for you and your business. Reach out to us on Facebook to talk to one of our representatives.