I’ll admit that the positive cash flow generated by a purchased is welcomed, appreciated and needed BUT every customer as the potential to be a great asset OR liability to your business.
Happy customers may or may not tell their friends about your business but I can almost guarantee you that every unhappy customer will repeat their dissatisfaction at every opportunity. This talk among friends is word of mouth advertising at its best and worst.
You can encourage the good word of mouth advertising by offering a discount to your current customers when a friend of theirs, that isn’t an existing customer, mentions them during their purchase. The discount might be 5-15 percent depending on your profit margin, lifetime value of your customers and how much you are willing to pay for advertising that generates results.
Your customers are the best way to get an idea on how you can improve your business. Before you decide on a direction, survey existing customers to find out what they want or need most. Their answers might surprise you and they might even open up areas or directions you hadn’t considered.
Review your support requests and you might find ways you can modify your business or create a new product or service to solve problems you didn’t know existed or you didn’t think were worth the effort.
Think about holding a contest where customers are encouraged to make funny, entertaining, wacky or informational videos that are promoting your product or service. Have each video posted on YouTube or some other video site with the number of views being the deciding factor of who wins the contest. A promotion like this will cost you some product BUT the potential advertising benefits will far outweigh the monetary outlay.
A report recently aired on CBS where a guy is making 6 figures a year from the amateur jingles he does on YouTube for various contests and sweepstakes he enters. The money comes from banner ads YouTube shows with his videos. To earn THAT much from YouTube, you know his videos are viewed a LOT and the companies mentioned in each video must be doing very well too.
If you have an online business, you might think about holding a contest to see which customer can create the best banners for your business. Use tracking stats that they can see and determine the winner by conversion instead of looks.
There are many ways your customers can become an invaluable part or your team instead of just being a customer IF you are willing to think outside of the box and use them as the business asset they are.
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