was in a store last night and they had a mailing list sign-up sheet on the
counter. It said “Give us
your address so we can let you know about specials, sales, and news about
our store.” Good
business owner has a private gold mine just sitting there and very few
seem to be taking advantage of it: their current customers. We all know how expensive it is to get a new customer, but
how many of us are getting all we can from the customers we already have?
This isn’t rocket science; you are providing a valuable product
or service and your current customers already know and trust you.
Be in a position to make special offers to them to get the biggest
bang for your advertising buck.
To do this, you must know who they are and how to reach them.
To do that, create a database that is just for customers.
Anyone who has ever bought anything from you or inquired should be
in it. START NOW, EVEN IF YOU
HAVE NO IDEA HOW YOU WILL USE IT; it takes time to accumulate the data and
enter it. Then, when you
decide how to use it you’ll be ready to rock ‘n roll!
the data may be easy or it may not, depending on your situation.
The retail merchant I mentioned earlier only had walk-in traffic,
so they had to ask for the information.
There’s nothing wrong with that.
It’s actually better, because their customers are ASKING to be
sold to! If your business is
mail order, you already have shipping information; be sure you have their
mailing address as well. If
you want, you can even keep track of what they buy, so you can send them
specialized mailings. If you
owned a pet store, for example, you could note whether they buy dog or cat
products. Then you could send
specialized mailings for each type of pet.
you are collecting the data, however, be sure to get their e-mail
address. It costs
nothing to ask for it, so ask for it!
Here’s why: when you
do decide how and when to contact your customers, you can send e-mail
instead of an expensive mailer to everyone with an e-mail address.
You save money on labor, printing, envelopes, and postage.
Plus, it gets there in minutes instead of days.
should you send to your list? How
about special offers to get people to come to your store during slow
periods, or sales on slow-moving merchandise?
You can start a newsletter; it doesn’t have to be fancy, just
keep your name in front of them and give them something useful such as
recipes or “newsy” things pertaining to your products or services.
Give them value. They’ll
give you business.
not miss this incredible opportunity!
Start building your database now.
Trust me, you’ll figure out how to use it and when you do you can
be very, very effective in very little time.
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