Attracting new customers to your business is the most important thing you'll do, but how on earth does a small business actually make that happen?
These tips are foolproof ways to get the word out, attract new local customers, and grow your small business.
1. LEVERAGE EXISTING CUSTOMERS
If you don't already have existing customers who love you, it will be a challenge to cultivate new fans. Nurturing a customer base who'll add tremendous value starts with OVER delivering.
Zappos is infamous for their over-the-top crazy customer service policy. They maintain a stellar reputation by exciting their customers into spreading the news about their experience. Their high intensity customer satisfaction objectives won't take a multi-million dollar marketing budget.
You can achieve the same results by going out of your way for your customers and hiring people who will do the same. Some people will naturally talk about you online, most people might need a little nudge.
Here are a few friendly nudge ideas:
- Give coupons or discounts in exchange for referrals & reviews.
- Offer commissions on referrals like we do.
- A review for a contest entry — “Review your experience for a chance at a $200 shopping spree!”
- Appeal to your social media followers - shout out customers publicly.
- Ask them! — send a handwritten note or make a personal phone call.
Treat them right, provide incentives, and you've got a great sales funnel at your disposal.
2. BECOME YOUR OWN PUBLICIST
Who needs a fancy pants, expensive publicist? Well, you do - but you can also be your own PR expert!
Resources like HelpAReporter.com (HARO) are fabulous ways to get your name in lights! Reporters, radio stations, magazines, newspapers cruise HARO looking for leads and sources for their stories. Journalists post queries and anyone can respond as a source.
Other DIY PR platforms similar to HARO include:
• Source Bottle
With effort, these free resources will get you noticed and have you saying buh-bye to the languishing world of anonymity. There's no excuse!
3. SOCIAL MEDIA
When it comes to social media, the benefits are far too huge to overlook.
A surefire way to tap into a whole new group is to explore new social media sites, especially ones where your customers are hanging out. Most of us can maneuver Facebook and Twitter, but what if you're not reaching the right audience?
Depending on the platform, the audiences on social media will vary from site to site, so do your research, find your market, and hang out with them!
4. SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS
In most cases, we want to hear from the expert, so defining yourself as an industry expert is a dynamite way to create demand for your business. Giving a speech is a surefire way to showcase your expertise. It’s that simple—talk about what you love, what you do, what you know, and people start to see you as a knowledgeable source. And it's not uncommon for speaking engagements to lead to free press. BAM! Insta-demand!
5. STEP UP YOUR ORGANIC LOCAL SEO
Google receives over 40,000 search queries per SECOND! Yes, you read that right — almost four billion searches every day.
Here’s the thing: you can buy a domain name and set up a website that’s perfectly designed to convert customers, but you need traffic. If you want to be visible to search engines and the people who use them (everyone), you have to wrap your brain around local search engine optimization (aka SEO).
Here are some quick & easy tips for improving your SEO:
• Keep your content fresh – update regularly.
• Don't be a wallflower – get on Google+, get on StumbleUpon, get on Yelp. Put your name as many places as you can.
• Spread Your Love - seek out guest post opportunities with influential bloggers & authority sites