Every new business tries to attract as many new clients as possible. But it’s also important for established businesses to constantly acquire new clients. No matter how well you operate your business, you can expect to lose 10-25% of your customers each year according to Marketing at Work. Previously, we discussed 4 ways to retain your customers and generate repeat business and today, we are going to focus on how to attract new clients to replace the lost ones.
Identify and understand your ideal client
Before you start making strategies to attract clients, think about who you want to attract. Have a clear and specific image in your head of who you’re targeting. How old are they? Where do they spend time? Why are they coming to your business? Asking yourself these questions can help you create a detailed profile of your target customer. This profile can help you narrow down the focus of your efforts and customize your strategies for your new clients.
Freshen up your offline and online image
View your business through the eyes of a prospective client. A well-maintained store image creates a good first impression on your new clients. Similarly, it may be necessary to upgrade your website and improve your online presence if you want to attract new clients. Your clients are increasingly accustomed to finding information about businesses online — 42% of consumers rely on search engines as their primary method for looking up local businesses. By becoming more discoverable online and ensuring the accuracy of your business information, you’ll enable a broader audience to find and book you. You can learn more about how to optimize your website for search engines in our blog post here.
Become a trusted resource
You’re an expert in the services you provide. By creating and publishing useful content that’s relevant to your target market, you can attract them to your website. More importantly, it helps you gain new clients’ trust — if the information you share with them for free turns out to be helpful, it is much more likely for them to make a purchase when they come back to you next time. You can also submit your blog articles, photos, and videos to related third-party sites to increase exposure. Since you already know who your target customers are, you can figure out which networks they use and build a presence there. Eventually, you will bring them back to your site. Research shows that small businesses with a strong web presence grow more than twice as quickly as those that have minimal or no presence.
Develop new sales and marketing channels
Maybe it’s time to sell products or allow booking online, if you don’t already. More than half of purchases were made online in 2015. It might also be a good idea to build partnerships and do cross-promotions with non-competing local businesses that serve the same target market you want to attract. You can both take advantage of the co-marketing — their clients can become yours and yours can become theirs. If you can work with someone with a large audience, the exposure you get through them is enormous, and it won’t cost you much. Collaboration is not limited to other businesses, though — you can also ask your clients who have large followings to promote you in exchange for free or discounted services from you.
Encourage reviews and referrals
Your happy customers can become the most effective unpaid sales force for your business if you give them a little nudge. Most people trust online reviews as much they as they trust their friends and family’s recommendations. You should remind your customers to give you online reviews. Instead of having customers simply check-in to your location, encourage them to take pictures of your products and services to share on social media sites. You can reward them with discounts and special gifts to show appreciation and drive referrals.
Offer introductory giveaways
A proven strategy to attract new clients is to give away something of value for free. A limited-time offer can create a buzz in your community and let more people know about your business. Those who have been hesitating to visit your store may finally take action. Offer your new clients a risk-free opportunity to test your service and recognize its value, and you will be rewarded with more paying clients in the future. The key is to be genuine about your offer,providing something that’s valuable to your clients but doesn’t cost you much.
Growing your client base is a constant endeavor. None of these methods are easy — they all need your consistent attention — but they are critical to the success of your business.
Find out how MyTime Marketing can help you attract more new clients here.