“In this economy…” How many times have you heard someone start their conversation with those three words? It seems that more and more people are struggling to find customers. If you’re looking for ways to generate new leads and bring people to your website, business or community, consider some of the ways “they” used to market. Perhaps one of these old techniques will get you a new client or two this week!
1. It’s not just what you know (to do), but who.
One glance at your LinkedIn profile will remind you that the world is a small place. As tempting as it is to wait for the phone to ring, hope for an email order to arrive, or wish more customers would walk through the door, this non-action may actually wind up hurting your business. Over the next week, read about “Asking for the referral.” If you’re looking for a book to start with, pick up a copy of “Influence” by Robert Cialdini.
2. Of course it takes more time, but call them anyway.
The phone…yes, that “extra” thing that most of us have within 2 or 3 feet of us at almost any time. Use it more. As an experiment in customer service, call 1 person a day to thank them for being a customer and offer them something live. You might say, “Hey, come find me the next time you come in to the store so I can give you a 10% off coupon,” or “I’ve got a discount code for our online store, do you have a pen to write it down? It’s good until next Friday.”
Often, people aren’t used to a phone call where you’re just calling to thank them, or give them something. This could be a story they tell a friend! (See point number 1.)
3. There’s something about holding a “Hello” card.
Focus on the next few people you meet in your business. Learn something about them, and if possible get their business card (or find their address online). Within two days, write them a “Hello” card. Where it is appropriate and/or possible, thank them for their business and write a short story about something you remember working on together. Let them know something specific about any upcoming sales, events or even sponsorships (if you’re involved in your local community).
When was the last time you held an actual written letter in your hand? It may seem old-fashioned, but this kind of gesture can really make you and/or your organization stand out as “different.” Continue working to create an environment where people know how to refer you. This kind of “Old” marketing just may turn the dial for you.
Be careful with that adage: Out with the old, and in with the new. Generating leads today requires you create, implement and test ideas from across traditional and technological spectrum. Be unique in your market by creating business practices that appeal to more of your market. The decision you make today to return that call or send that card just may get you the next referral!
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