We all want to generate new business. Networking events, tradeshows, books, and advertising are all time consuming (and expensive) ways of generating sales. If you haven’t had the pleasure of taking a collegiate marketing class then here’s a tip; “Start Growing your Business from your Current Base of Satisfied Clients”
Marketing 101 tells us that referral marketing within your current base of satisfied clients is a strategy that is extremely rewarding for professionals who do good work. In other words, if you’ve sacrificed quality for high turn over, then this article isn’t for you.
It takes a lot of time and energy to to find new clients but if you’re confident in the quality of your work, then you may have a team of marketers and not even know it. Customer lead generation is all about positive word of mouth promotion.
Don’t sit back and wait for the phone to ring. Perhaps your service isn’t as buzz worthy as the latest Hollywood flick but a little encouragement could be the key. Every small business needs leads; if you haven’t tried actively leveraging your current client base then why not give it a shot?
Here are some examples:
1. My accountant Dave had a few cancellations and he’s looking for a new clients to ensure this tax season is as profitable as the last.
He’s currently running a promotional campaign with about 50 of his past clients. He’s offering them dinner for two at Legal Seafoods for every sale they send him.
Did it work?
Dave’s already filled his schedule to the brim and now he’s passing on some of the leads to other accountants he knows. This good karma will ensure Dave has plenty of referral sources to rely on next season.
2. Lauren, a mortgage broker, works in an office adjacent to mine. She’s looking for real estate agent referrals to pass on to her associate who’s been sending her quite a bit of business this quarter. What’s interesting is that she’s actually running a promotion campaign to find leads for her colleagues, not herself. She knows that many of her past clients may be interested in realty services. Couple that with a juicy incentive and Lauren’s been able to balance quite a number of profitable referral relationships with a diverse group of realtors.
3. Warren is a computer repair/networking guy we know and he’s one of the best in the city. He also happens to know the power of a morning coffee. In this economy many of us are even second guessing that morning cup of designer coffee. Warren has a customer base of several hundred. If they send Warren new business, he’ll send them a $10 gift card to Starbucks. This is an example of a great word of mouth marketing strategy and it certainly wouldn’t be possible by sending stationary or joining an expensive business network.