Nothing here is complicated, clever or difficult. It just needs to be done consistently. Do these steps consistently and I guarantee you will be successful.
You will see that we have illustrated how we can help with each step. Yes, this is a sales message, but you can also do each step for yourself without paying us or anyone else. If you want help, call me, text me or email me – I won’t charge you for my time – promise!
Step 1 – Be visible
You will only get enquiries from people that know you exist! That may be obvious, but how many times have you had the conversation with someone who said “if only we’d known you were here…”?
So, are you visible to your target audience if they choose to go looking?
- Ensure that your website looks great. If it doesn’t, change it or remove it. No website is better than a bad website.
- Have a blog that you update weekly, as a shameless example here’s ours
- Consider other social media such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Friendfeed, etc.
So, follow these steps and you will be visible and credible should your ideal client come looking for you.
Step 2 – Be Credible
If your potential clients do go look at your public presence (website, blog, brochure, etc), will you look credible? Will they feel like getting in touch?
Here is what we recommend:
- Have great testimonials on your website, blog etc. Nothing is more compelling than having others saying nice things about you.
- Actively solicit testimonials from past clients. (Hint: tell them what you want them to say. Write it for them and just ask them to put their name to it.) Most will happily oblige if you gave them a good experience. From these testimonials create case studies that you can put on your website and send to prospective clients.
- Make sure that your phone is always professionally answered by a human being who can answer questions about your business. Answer phones and calls diverted to mobiles will lose you both business and credibility that you will never recover. If you want help with this, we’ll happily put you in touch with a great telephone answering service.
So, follow steps 1 & 2 and you will be visible and credible should your ideal client come looking for you.
BUT you cannot rely on potential clients to find you once they have a need for your product or service. They should know about you first so you come to mind when they have a need.
Step 3 – Be Memorable
It doesn’t matter how great your products or how wonderful your service, if no one knows about you, they are not going to buy from you. So, step 3 is to make sure that your target audiences always think of you when they have a requirement.
Start with your target audiences: who are they? Be specific. For example: Businesses within 40 miles of you with more than 10 employees; Accountancy practices in Southern England; UK charities; and so on. It’s fine to have more than one target audience. Next identify the people in these audiences that are likely to make an enquiry.
Once you know who you want to talk to, you can talk to them in lots of different ways. My experience is that the most economical and effective method is to email them initially then follow up by phone with the ones that are interested.
Here is what we recommend:
- Acquire lists of contacts in your target audiences to add your existing contact database. (We can help you find relevant contacts if you are struggling).
- Email them regularly (each month) with short, simple messages linking to more information. DO NOT SEND THEM A NEWSLETTER this is the sales equivalent of getting a megaphone and shouting in a prospect’s face!
- Analyse the responses to your emails, tracking who opens and clicks on the links.
- Target the best responders for follow up in step 4 below.
There are many email marketing packages available but most are quite complicated to use. We recommend a couple that work well. Contact me if you want to know more or if you want our help with email marketing. We can do as little or as much of the process as you want.
Step 4 – Be persistent
You must send out these emails every month. Your potential clients will only take action when they have a requirement, so you need to ensure that you are always in the front of their mind. This is why you need to keep your emails short, light and chatty – so they don’t offend those who don’t have a requirement right now. We can help you write these emails.
Step 5 – Be Personal
If you know anything about your potential customers, use this in your communication with them – make the emails as specific and personal as possible. If you know their name, use it in the salutation and maybe even the subject line. If you know someone is interested in one aspect of your business, send them content relevant to their interest.
Remember: it’s about them not you!!
The more personal and relevant you make your communications, the more interest you will generate. But you need a more advanced system to add levels of personalisation to your emails. And this can add cost.
We’ve developed a specialism that creates targeted and personalised emails to help clients generate more business from their email marketing. If you want help, just ask.
Step 6 – Be consistent
Through your awareness raising in steps 3 & 4, you will have a list of people expressing interest each month. Call these and record the outcome of the call. Most importantly, if you have committed to doing something during the call do it!
The trick here is to set aside time each week to make the calls and take the actions. Schedule it in your diary, turn off email and all other distractions and just get on with it.
Do it. Measure it. Evaluate it. Change it. Do it again.