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Marketing - The Secret to Expanding Your Customer Base

Wednesday, August 10, 2011   By Mike Reddy

 



If you want to expand your customer base, a good place to start is by asking yourself if your marketing is clear, sound and persuasive. Does your marketing convince sceptical customers that your service is the one for the job? In our role as a business coach we find a lot of opportunity here where it's just not working to your advantage.

An image overhaul is the first step, including a newly revamped marketing plan. Consider what has worked and not worked in the recent past and also consider future plans for the company.

Here are some more business coaching tips: 

  • Make deadlines and timetables for making sales: treat the sale like any other task in your 'to do' list with step-by-step plans to completion. Mark tasks, starting with initial sales calls, and map out step-by-step follow up-plans, ending with closing the deal.
  • Don't discount the little things or the more classic and traditional methods - not everything has to be new fangled and fancy. A solid and information-rich, easy to use website; or brochures and flyers still have credibility. Employing both the classics and the trends can broaden your target audience and generate the maximum amount of business.
  • Include more customer-friendly information such as testimonials, guarantees, feedback, referrals and surveys that offer real life 'proof' to your advertising campaign. Plus you can align yourself with recognisable groups that stand for solid and sound business to classify your business as trustworthy and secure.
  • Never let your own belief in your product falter - stay enthusiastic and find ways to truly believe in what you are offering. Upgrade and maintain your service levels so that you always feel that what you are offering is honestly the best product for the job. Potential customers can see right through an insincere sale and will look immediately to the competition.
  • Look into offering specialty services, or find a hole in the market that might need to be filled. Engage your employees with these challenges by offering incentives or recognition for instigating new strategies or generating new business.
  • Don't discount the continuous exposure that advertising can provide. Try something new and venture into a niche previously ignored. Be creative and think outside of the box on how your service or product can benefit non-traditional markets and venture into them with zeal.

Successful marketing comes from a clear understanding of your unique core differentiator - that's what differentiates you from your competitors. Shape Your Business coaching has published a video on how to develop your own UCD (otherwise known as a USP - Unique Selling Proposition). Feel free to click on the link and explore the topic.

If you aren't sure about the compelling reason why your prospective customers should be contacting you then it might be a great time to contact a Shape Your Business coach. Our business coaching system includes a tried and tested process to ensure you can develop this essential marketing ingredient before you waste precious marketing dollars.

As a normal part of monitoring your marketing activity you should be mindful of the leads being generated by your various marketing channels. Ensuring you are aware of each channel's Return on Investment will also ensure you make the best marketing choice in your business and can spot any changes in the responses from each sector.

With this knowledge you can constantly review your marketing spend to ensure you receive maximum exposure from your target market.


Mike Reddy is a Chartered Accountant, business coach and advisor helping businesses in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Gold Coast to easily increase their profits and cash flow. He is currently President of the North Sydney Chamber of Commerce, a Regional Councillor for Sydney North East and a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants Sydney leadership team. As well as advising businesses, Mike presents business development seminars and webinars and is regularly contacted by the media to comment on small business matters. You can connect with him on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.