If your business is like many business owners I talk to, I bet you’re profitable – but not in a way that will move it forward very far. Things may have even slowed more this spring, due to the economy and all the options your target market has lately.
So how can you re-energize your profits to continue to grow your business?
Here’s what really is happening: You are looking at your financial picture. It shows that you are doing repeat business with a loyal group of customers. We all need a solid customer base to build on.
Unfortunately, you are not building. That base is all you seem to have. What you want are new customers to grow out of that, and help you make your brand.
So, this will probably be your starting point when you think of ways to get profits rising again. So now is the time to dig a little deeper and see what opportunities you have right in front of you.
- Create a customer survey – You can send it as part of your email marketing campaign or include it as a link within your receipt page for existing customers. But, instead of asking customers only to make a comment, ask questions which will give you valuable information about your customers and what they want to see from your services.
- Offer incentives – Stores do it all the time and it works quite well. Here’s an example. Any customer that refers a new person to you can receive a free item or earn store credit for each referral up to a certain amount. Without spending extra money on advertising, you can gain new business profits.
- Revamp your website – You have created a loyal base of customers. Ask them for testimonials that you can use on your website, on landing pages or in your newsletter. If they want, add pictures of your customers as well to go with their comments.
- Add a questionnaire to your website – Find out how your customers can help you to help them. Car websites often do that to offer a list of results featuring potential cars to fit your needs. You can adapt this technique to do the same for you. Even if they don’t buy the most expensive item you recommend for them, there are others to choose from that they might buy.
- Offer new programs – Bundle services to offer discounts to existing customers. For new customers, if they know that they are getting more for their money, they are likely to give you a try. Then, you can impress them and keep them coming back.
© Copyright 2012 Shannon Cherry, APR, MA