Searching for new business? Start with your current customer base

Marketing planning cards

I find myself telling people all the time, “I don’t care whether you took a high school economics class or graduated from Harvard… the most basic foundational lesson you learned is that your No. 1 source of new business is the person you are currently doing business with.”This philosophy lies at the core of any effective marketing plan.These customers already exist, have already had the experience, and are aware of the good and bad associated with buying from you.Existing customers are without question the most overlooked source of new business for any retailer.The challenge for most businesses is the absence of an exact marketing plan on how often previous owners should be contacted, or what message will make them respond the most.The way to combat this is to build a marketing plan that allocates enough resources on a monthly basis to send out communications to your previous customers to generate a response that results in new business.I have broken a pre-planning strategy down into five points. Regardless of what industry you are in, these must all be addressed before a plan can be created.1 What’s the size? The size of your owner base will be the greatest factor in determining the amount of effort and dollars required for effective marketing. Once total audience is determined, you can apply the frequency of how many people are contacted every week, month, quarter and year to effectively market to this audience. Once the frequency is applied, you can set a calendar or schedule of events to take place in your plan.2 What’s the message? The greatest point of all in terms of a message is that no message is a bad message. Every piece of direct mail or email that gets sent ultimately makes an impression. The bottom line is that a message should always be sent and it should be created by knowing what a customer base is most likely to respond to based on what are the best products or services you sell.

via Searching for new business? Start with your current customer base – Birmingham Business Journal.

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