A pesky fly. A trusty boomerang. An old penny. In life, some things are fleeting, but others just keep coming back. In business, you have a substantial impact on the “coming back” of your patrons. Effective entrepreneurs know that the key to maximizing customer value is by growing retention and increasing repeat business.
How can you make your marketing magnetically attractive to new and existing clients? Through two systematic strategies: front and back end marketing. As you develop these priorities, seek to continually present answers to these two questions:
- “What’s Great?”
- “What’s New?”
Front-end marketing refers to outreach that attracts leads, prospects, or customers. This type of word-of-mouth marketing is extremely beneficial because what others say about you is ten times more believable than what you say about yourself.
How do you grow referral marketing? Walt Disney said it like this: “The way to be very successful in marketing is to do what you do so well that people can’t resist telling others about you.”
“What’s Great?” You are!
Blow people away with your creativity, quality, or generous service. When you do, immediately ask for a referral. For example, when your client says, “Wow, this is fantastic!” say something like, “Hey, you know we’re trying to grow our business, and we really depend on clients like you to get the word out. Could you help?”
Have business cards or referral forms ready and ask clients to write down three names and contacts on the spot. Or send several promo flyers and coupons with them and challenge them to give them to friends by the end of the week. This is a fast, very soft request that costs you next to nothing.
Bored customers tend to look elsewhere, so back-end marketing should push you to reinvent your business frequently. It’s important that you always have an answer to that “What’s New?” question. Whether it’s a new widget, streamlined incentive program, or a fresh service package, regular content keeps your vision energized and your base encouraged.
As part of your regular content, your business should have a monthly newsletter hitting customer doorsteps each month. Why? Printed newsletters have greater perceived value, a higher open rate, and a more memorable, influential presence.
Your monthly newsletter should highlight your uniqueness and confirm the value people are receiving through your business. Demonstrate your industry authority in ways that are helpful to customers as you talk about problems you know they have: time management strategies, outsourcing options, technology helps, etc.
Also, include lighthearted content just for the sake of fun: cartoons, jokes, or embarrassing moments from your staff. Finally, keep featuring “what’s new” with Q/A articles, product promos, testimonials, and more.
Engaged, interested customers buy more frequently and refer more often. Every business will benefit from front- and back-end marketing strategies!