Some say psychopaths make excellent businessmen. They’re focused, they’re demanding, and they make great eye contact. When you’re running your own business you fill a hundred different roles a day, and it’s easy to lose focus. Whichever role you’re performing, you need to channel your favourite psychopath and keep your eyes on the prize: increasing your turnover.
These five steps are proven ways of using your existing customers to increase your turnover.
1. Get obsessed
Learn everything you can about your customers: are they Aldi or Waitrose, Midsummer Murders or Game of Thrones, Hoxton or the Home Counties? Understand their motivations, and develop different categories they can all fit into. If possible, gather information by speaking directly to them. Find out what they love about your business, what they hate, and what they would type into a search box if looking for a particular product.
2. Take aim
Tailor your business to your core market. Is there a product they often need alongside your product? Can you offer it too? Should your business open later or on different days? When they’re on your premises, do they want to feel like they’re in a nightclub, a sleek corporate machine, on holiday, or at home? Do they want chit-chat, or do they just want to pay and get out? Your brand should target your perfect customer, while not alienating your other groups. Certain products can be marketed at satellite niches, but not to the detriment of attracting your perfect customer.
3. Get stalking
Watch their every move in your premises and online. See how they interact with information and products. You can test new strategies in certain outlets or by sending different versions of newsletters at the same time. Be careful you aren’t too obvious or relentless. People are becoming accustomed to tailored ads, but if they think you’re getting too intimate they’ll run in the opposite direction.
4. Keep close but not too close
Offer a one-off promotion or giveaway in exchange for signing-up to a newsletter, which gets you their email addresses. During sign-up, you can ask up to three short questions to help fit them into a specific target group, for instance their age and gender. Send out regular e-shots, and if possible set up mailing groups according to customer categories, so you can include tailored promotions and product information. Do not bombard them with multiple emails per week. Remember newsletters don’t just have to be ads for products, but can build loyalty through providing useful information relevant to your business.
5. Hire hitmen
It’s no good you knowing everything about your customers if your staff don’t know too. Train your staff properly. Make sure they can spot different categories of customer and tailor their approach, even if you have a basic sales script. Give them results-based incentives and make sure they can handle anything with a smile.
Your existing customers are the most likely to spend more and spend again. The better you know them, the better you can market and develop your products. New customers are likely to fall into the same demographic, and will often have some link to your existing customer base; word of mouth is the best advertising you can get.
Get in touch if you're looking for accountants who see beyond balance sheets and are genuinely interested in your business growth and success.