Your business is built on a foundation of 3 things. Your Market – Customers, Competition, Unique Sales Benefits. Your Message – who are you going to talk to and how are you going to say it. Your Media – choose the right channel of communication with which to make sure you get the attention of your customers and prospects.
What does your Market look like?
What is your Message?
Through What Media?
Your business relies on Customers to survive. No matter what size your prospect is, it is really important to do your research. The more information you have about your market, your customers’ business, the better prepared you will be and you will demonstrate an interest in their business. Also look for the best type of customers for your business – don’t sell to everyone. Your customer database is your most valuable asset and is vital for your success. To this end you must make sure that your database is up to date, normalised, deduplicated, GDPR compliant and centralised in a CRM.
You must understand your customers:
- What did they buy from you?
- How much did they spend?
- Why did they buy from you?
- What are their profiles? Demographics (Who are they), Geographics (Where are they) and Psychographics (What are they interested in).
- Who are your best and worst customers?
Understanding this will start to show you where you are perceived as “different” in the market place so you know know your Unique Sales Benefit is for your business.
“So what makes your offering different?“
Profiling your existing customer database will help you to understand who your ideal customer is – this is called an Avatar or Persona. It is likely that 80% of your income will come from 20% of your customers. Once you have a profile of your customers, you will be clear as to what sort of businesses typically want to do business with you. You can then use the intelligence to create or purchase new suspects/prospects. Furthermore, make sure that you are maximizing your effort by developing stronger relationships with your best customers – the 20% – so you can up sell and cross sell. From the 80%, select those you wish to nurture to turn into better customers and then manage the lowest 20% and “keep in touch” over longer intervals as you don’t want to waste time on those customers who are not doing much business with you.
Your customer list is really important to get right – they are your lifeblood so it is important to nurture and maintain this list at regular intervals to keep the database clean and compliant.
And when you do communicate your product/service offerings, this understanding will ensure you know your customers extremely well and be able to offer them timely and relevant solutions to meet their business needs.
By adopting this process will help you to develop a strong relationship with your customers and will be the reason why your customers buy from you. Like any good relationship, keep in touch with them and ask why they buy from you and how they want to grow their business as it is possible that you could plan for new product/services to supply them with in future.
Finally, know your competition by understanding what they are able to offer and if any are being considered by your customers. The stronger the relationship that you build with your customers, the more likely they will stay with you.
Once you understand who you are talking to – and once you have segmented and profiled the database, you need to think about what messages will be most relevant.
For example; the top 20% get upsell, cross sell and personal contact. 50% to 60% get a nurture approach and the bottom 20% or so get the polite “Let’s re-negotiate our business relationship” letter. The objective is to get them to buy your new product or service – NEW being the operative word. If something is not new or different; why should anyone want to buy it – providing of course you have ascertained that it is relevant to them.
Any message needs to switch on the emotions in a person. It needs to appeal to their desires and get them to do something.
All your communication should follow the A.I.D.A principle – Attention. Interest. Desire. Action.
So when targeting one of your selected segments, rather than have a headline which says:
“This “product/service” will give you the edge you have been looking for”
Say instead for example:
“7 important reasons why your competitors will be sorry that you bought “this product/service”.
A headline like this will get the ATTENTION of the reader. The purpose of this headline is to get them to read the next line and get their INTEREST. This creates a DESIRE and finally a call to ACTION. Writing powerful copy is an art on its own right and you need skilled people to create and deliver this.
You then can test your message with small campaigns (e.g Google AdWords and Facebook) that leverage the internet with different headlines. You can then monitor and measure results using Google analytics or similar so your communication can be fine-tuned so that only the best results are being paid for.
To stand apart from the rest you need to “Break the Mould”. People like to buy the unusual not the ordinary.
All very well to have your Market and your Message – but how are you going to get it out there?
I have already mentioned online media like Google AdWords and Facebook as these are low cost and high return options if done properly.
Traditionally companies blanket the media options using, to name but a few, newspapers, radio, email, leaflets and direct mail and where they can afford it, TV. Not a bad thing to do but the targeting can be too broad.
There is still a place for traditional media such as Direct Mail and many company owners still like receive post which when done creatively, can work wonders. Leave the TV and radio to the big bigger organisations as these are not for limited budgets.
Now you know what your Avatar or Persona looks like, you can concentrate on where these target customers live; the geography – and the who your market is; the demographics – and what motivates them to buy; the psychographics. Then choose the media to fit the message more tightly.
Getting and KEEPING Customers should be the main focus of any business and should be driven from the top. Using a CRM solution tailored to your business processes you can develop the relationship and the TRUST of a customer and as a result they will become a powerful ally for you and refer you to other businesses.
Contact Jamie here if you would like to talk further about this and other ideas.