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 In Managing & Growing

For most small businesses, the quest for new customers is never-ending. Consumers today are more empowered than ever, and businesses need to work hard to replace lost customers and continue building their audience.

1. Start a blog

A blog (standalone or on your website) enhances your online presence. With the right SEO keywords for your industry, it can attract customers through Google. By creating interesting, shareable content, you can have others promoting your business and introduce new customers to your digital doorstep.

2. Give back advertising dollars

Consider a letterbox, email or social media campaign where you give customers vouchers – instead of spending that money on advertising – to buy your products or services.

This strategy is particularly useful where communities may be looking to support a local business. In your communication, make it clear this is a gift certificate to spend with you, and advertise what they can spend it on.

However, you need to be sure that your cash flow can handle a reduction in profit margin before you commence the campaign.

3. Be interactive

Never underestimate the value of being seen out there. The digital world offers many opportunities to engage with like-minded people to build your contacts, brand and customer base.

Methods include:

  • Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Reddit.
  • Online forums for particular industries and interest groups.
  • A regular newsletter with interesting and engaging content.
  • Sharing useful information through online slideshows or webinars.
  • Getting to know people in your industry association.
  • Attending organised networking events.

It’s important to note that the point of interacting is not selling – it’s positioning yourself as an authority who is all about listening, sharing and learning.

4. Incentivise repeat customers

One of the oldest tricks in the marketing book is still the most effective. Offering an incentive program for repeat customers can give you the base you desire to keep cash flow ticking along, and enable you to refine your popular products or services while developing new ideas.

The incentive can be members-only discounts, a freebie once a specified dollar amount has been spent or access to special sales or new items.

5. Be a host

Host an event or class to teach a skill. It will attract new customers to your business and create goodwill in your community.

Seek out new customers through notice boards (at libraries, coffee shops, etc.) and online forums and hashtags. If your business has a broad location base, you may want to conduct the event online through a service such as Google Hangouts. Don’t forget to offer your class or event to your existing customer base as a reward for their loyalty.

With all this new business walking through your door, don’t forget to assess your capital requirements. Speak to Prospa on 1300 882 867 or apply online for a loan to help grow your small business.

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