Keeping in touch with your clients can be the single most cost effective marketing program that you can implement in your business. The cost to acquire a new client can often be many times higher then the much easier option of selling again to an existing client. Of course this is not to say that you should not be advertising to both new and existing clients, as you cannot sell again to existing clients without them purchasing previously.
The ways and means to advertise to existing clients can be very much varied, and range from unguided to highly targeted offers. Of course the better methods which will generally yield you better results are the highly targeted and often specific to a small group of clients. The biggest problem for many businesses is how do you gather the information to allow you to highly target your marketing to existing clients.
It may depend on how targeted you want to get, but really there are quite a lot of ways to gather information on your clients that you can use to better target your advertising. I will go through a few here, however this is really where you can get creative in your business. You as a business owner and your sales people dealing with clients all the time are faced with so many opportunities to get information on your clients.
Probably the easiest and most direct way is create a client list, either using microsoft Excel, or even a exercise book where you record your client’s name, address, phone number, and any other details you may think the client is willing to offer and would be useful. Once set up it is as simple as asking if the client would like to be added to your mailing list to receive information on future offers. If not a physical mailing list then you can always try a Email List. If no computer is available at your cash register create some cards for clients to fill out and enter the details later, this is the easiest way and most over looked way to get client details.
Customer Loyalty Program
Most customers love the idea of saving some money or getting extra bonus, and it is all the better for your business if by helping them save money they are spending more, or more often to do so. This method would be best done in a similar fashion to the Client List, however you would be looking at giving either a small discount on every purchase or a gift voucher after the 10th purchase for 10% of the value of the 10 previous purchases, or even a bonus every 5th purchase. There is in almost every business something that can be done, even if it seems like something really small for you it may mean a lot to your customers and they may be more interested in working with your business.
Get their postcode
The simplest method to better define your market area, or the area where most of your clients come from is to simple ask every customer as you are processing their sale for their postcode. Many Electronic POS systems already have the ability to do this, or just create a small system of cards or a listing for your sales staff to record the post codes. Even within the first week you should start to see a trend and be able to see where the bulk of your customers are coming from. You can bring it down even closer by asking for a suburb as often one postcode may cover multiple suburbs. Once you have an idea of where your customers are coming from it will give you an ability to focus marketing either in areas where your you have no customers or promoting extra services to your current customers and their neighbors.
Online Newsletter or Report
While not suitable for every business, offering a newsletter, or report to clients when they visit your website. Once they have provided you your email address, especially when expecting to receive a newsletter, it opens up two doors. Once to provide experienced knowledge to your clients, on the area that your products are in. Also to include some advertising along with the quality information you are offering. This establishes your business as an expert in your field as well as offering your clients products and offers.
There are a few ideas to get you started on better marketing to your customers and staying in contact with them. Of course it is always best to put your own twist on marketing to your clients so that they do not see it as a blatant marketing attempt, and try to offer them more value in this marketing. Feel free to comment and leave more ideas on staying in touch with your clients.