One of the toughest steps in growing your revenue is finding new customers. It is the single hardest step for many. Yet, new customer acquisition can make or break your business. It may be the most important element to your success as a business owner or sales professional. The challenge is finding prospects. This article gives you a few ideas to build a long-term list.
First, let’s get it out of the way… the cold call. This is not a long-term strategy, it is a short term technique. Many rely on the cold call to fill their funnels and it can be a good way to build your list. There are few people who are great at establishing relationships and rapport on the phone and in email, but the cold call is not for everyone. It can be a big time waster if you do not warm up the call first. The focus here is to warm up prospects or get them to call you. There are several ways to do that using the giving first principle.
In the giving first principle, the idea is to give value to your potential customers to build a relationship. Educating prospects is the new marketing strategy. You can educate your prospects in the following effective ways:
- Seminars: host a one-hour live or online event full of valuable tips and information using your expertise to create the program. Offer it for free or a small charge, then make them an offer for another program or a discount on your product or services.
- Social Media: there are many options to choose from and it can be overwhelming to work all of them. Start with Twitter, a Facebook Business Page and a LinkedIn account. You can publish your articles in LinkedIn. Also, write them in WordPress and post them to Facebook and Twitter at the same time. Give your future customers helpful content they can implement right away. Be consistent and post at least weekly. Once you master these two social media sites, you can try others like YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, and Periscope.
- Bonus tip 1: give them a Free Super Valuable Offer to join your email list and you can send them private messages.
- Bonus tip 2: do not send them mass messages in Facebook or LinkedIn, only individual messages customizable to them personally.
- Netweaving: the new networking! Attend networking events with the idea of giving value first. Go where your potential customers are and meet people who you want in your circle. Find out how you can help them first. Can you make a connection for them? Can you help them with a concept? Can you share valuable information to help their businesses? Would they make a good person to have in your mastermind group? Help others and they will want to help you too. Build your community by netweaving.
- Small Group Seminars: gather and group of five to eight people for an in-person brainstorming session. Choose people with similar goals. They can be in the same industry or not, it depends on the goal of the group. Competitors can be your best allies if you are in an industry where you can support each other. For example, many people are in sales, but not all sales programs are created equal. Do your programs complement each other? If so, it would be a good fit.
- eBooks: these are an excellent freebie to offer people to provide value. You can print a small workbook and offer it at a low-cost or give it free at any of the opportunities above. It will have a long shelf-life, so if your future customer is not in the right place for you now, they will have your eBook or workbook to remember you when they are ready.
Building your business is not all about the cold call. Use the methods above and discover prospects who will turn into long-term customers. You must be consistent and do not give up. They work, however, they take time to build and the result is 100x better than cold calling.
About the author: Jennifer “is a powerful, enlightening, positive force to be around!” Jennifer Darling is a business growth coach. She has worked with 1,000s of small businesses in strategic planning to grow their businesses. She provides consulting for small to medium businesses, and personal development coaching for individuals. Jennifer possesses 20 years in sales, marketing, leadership and personal development for companies such as NBC, CBS, and Comcast. She holds a Master’s Degree in Management and a Bachelor’s Degree in Advertising & Promotion.