The doors are wide open, the website is up and running, but you have yet to make a substantial sale. This scenario is quite familiar for small business owners, especially those individuals who are just starting out as entrepreneurs. Today’s consumer is savvier than ever, always doing price comparisons online while browsing a brick-and-mortar store. An advertisement in the newspaper will not be enough to increase footfall to the storefront. What your business urgently needs is an unusual approach to marketing to draw in new customers.
Become an Expert
One foolproof method in establishing your presence in an industry is by talking about it. It will serve you well to begin researching and writing about issues that affect your particular business or trade on a blog. Remember, this blog must be linked to your online store or website! You can begin with writing brief blog posts, from 300 to 500 words in length, about a particular topic that is of interest to your customers. For example, if you are in the landscaping business, you can write a series of blogs covering lawn care for the autumn season. If writing does not seem appealing, you can always commission a professional content writer to develop the posts.
Reward the Repeat Customer
All this effective marketing strategy requires is a storewide discount, say 5-10%, for online customers who complete one of the following requirements:
· Dedicate a day of the week to a particular demographic, like College Students, Young Moms, Gardeners or Formula 1 Fans. That is when they can avail the special storewide discount.
· Place more than 3 orders equal or more than $75 in a month’s time (This tactic encourages your customer to keep checking out deals on the site and boosts sales as a result.)
· Refer the website page or a social media account to friends who sign-up for the weekly newsletter (This approach builds brand awareness and brings more eyeballs to your online store)
· Include a limited time 50% discount flyer inside every online-order package, to be redeemed within 48 hours of receipt.
Do What Sephora Does
The reigning online beauty brand, Sephora, has maintained its hold on both their customer’s hearts and wallets with their freebie strategy. There is no order too small, as the beauty store will always throw in a surprise mini-lipstick or a trial spa mask for the customer. Including freebies for your mail-order customers makes excellent financial sense, in the long-term. If you sell custom-designed planners, you can include a mini sticker set as a gift. Something as humble as a mini sticker set may turn an occasional customer into a repeat customer! Freebies are a tried-and-tested offline marketing approach, especially for those business owners who cater to niche markets like kawaii, home-made decor or organic spa products. Make sure to include your business cards in every order package, in case the customer wants to refer a friend or family member.
No matter which strategy you choose to try first, the objective remains the same: it is to make a sale without hounding or boring the customer. Choosing to be innovative with marketing tactics always pays off in the marketplace.