If you run a business and you’re interested in extending your reach and spreading the word to as many potential customers as possible, then ignoring social media is simply not an option. Social media is an incredibly powerful tool for any business that wants to promote itself to a large audience and has been instrumental in the success of many modern products and services.
In case you’re still thinking you can do without it, read on to see five of the reasons you should definitely be using social media.
1) The Market is Huge
It’s a well-known fact that Facebook would be the third largest country in the world were you to take every member and put them in one place. That’s an absolutely insane number of users that you can gain access to then, simply by signing up to the platform and starting to promote yourself there. Then if you consider all the other social media platforms available, this is simply too huge of an opportunity to miss.
2) It’s Conducive to ‘Virality’
If you want an idea, video or article to ‘go viral’ then you need social media. Social media’s design makes it perfectly suited to helping media to go viral Ð as all the tools for sharing and are right there and the networks are already in place.
3) It’s Interactive
Social media isn’t just about reaching your audience though Ð it’s also about interacting with them. Because social media lets you respond to comments, it means that you can actively engage with them and thereby build a relationship.
4) It’s Personal
Social media is also personal and often the networks that are in place are based on real-world social networks. So when you see that someone ‘likes’ a product that isn’t just a meaningless statistic Ð it is a referral from a friend or colleague who you trust.
5) It’s Targeted
When you sign up to a given social media channel as a user, you will start out by giving your personal details. These include your name, age, marital status and more. In other words, you are providing tons of information that can then be used by businesses to identify their precise target demographic. You don’t just have a huge market here but a tailored one!
And there’s more!
Social media has many benefits beyond these five though. Whether it’s the incredible networking possibilities you’re interested or the tools and apps that make it so easy to manage your accounts there are many more ways that social media sets itself apart as one of the most powerful tools available to businesses of all sizes.
The three P’s to Profit are
P – Phone you – getting their attention and persuading them to pick up the phone (Before)
P – Pick You – positioning yourself as the only logical choice, converting your quotes to sales (During)
P – Promote you – leverage happy customers to get more repeat business and referrals (After)
When talking to business owners about what they are currently doing in their business I am always really interested to know, how they are marketing to their customers before, during and after.
What’s that? After? What do you mean after?
Well there are plenty of ways that you can help your customers coming back to you each year but today I wanted to give you a way to get them to continue to give create business for you after the sale by promoting you.
The number one thing that I my clients implement to market to their clients is what I call the worlds simplest referral system.
This simple method can be done easily and cheaply.
You can buy packs of thank you cards from Officeworks, or you can have them made.
Inside on the card write:
Thanks for your business.
It was great to work with you.
Please don’t hesitate to call me when you need my services again.
In the meantime I would like to work with more clients like you, so if you know of anyone needing an electrician, I’d be grateful if you would pass on one of my cards to them.
Make sure that the card and the address on the envelope is handwritten too.
Pop in a few business cards and you are done.
Think about it.
When was the last time you got a ‘thank you’ from anyone?
In fact, when was the last time you got something in the mail that was handwritten?
It sticks out in your mind and a simple, elegant and effective to get your customers to remember you and recommend you too.
If you want to know more strategies to create more money from you existing customer get in touch via PM or email email@example.com
When you are actually talking to potential customers it’s really great to be able to talk about the benefits of your work but is a lot easier if you’ve got other people doing the talking and selling for you.
For many businesses, 20 to 50% of their work comes in from referrals from others so having testimonials is a really powerful thing that you can have within your marketing.
A testimonial is described as a formal statement testifying to someone’s character, qualifications and skills.
So why are testimonials so effective?
Testimonials build trust
Whether your customers are raving about what your product has
done for them or about the great service you gave, they’re telling your potential customers first and foremost that they had a positive experience with your products and company
Testimonials aren’t “salesy.”
Because testimonials aren’t written in your “voice,” they stand out in your marketing as candid and unbiased accounts of how well your service and products works
Testimonials overcome scepticism
A good testimonial has the power to convince even your “tough sell” customers that your product or service really made a difference in your customer’s life–and can help them too
So, how do you collect the testimonials you need and keep them coming as you grow your business?
You need to ask!
But most tradies would rather pick out their nose hairs with tweezers than ask for a testimonial, it is painful and often embarrassing.
So I’m giving you my three top templates to make it less awkward and uncomfortable for you.
Ready to go?
Simply click the link below for your exclusive access
My clients always want to know how I manage to get so much writing done everyday.
‘I don’t know how you do it, I go cross eyed at the computer’ they say.
Given a choice I would hand write out everything before I would type a word.
My brain to pen speed is a lot faster and smoother than my brain to keyboard speed.
And, with today’s technology you have options for old school writers like me.
Lifescribe Pen – this gives me the ability to handwrite into a workbook then using Livescribe aps and Evernote transfer it to my computer.
I use it a lot when I am at my kids sports, where I only have 30 mins to write. It is faster than getting the laptop out. I have been known to write an entire sales page at a karate class.
But, people laugh when they see me out writing with ‘a pen’ saying it so old school and that I should just ‘use a computer’.
If only they knew!
My other favourite go to is Dragon Speak Software.
It is basically the ability to speak your words and have them transcribed onto your computer.
You can do it from your phone or straight into the computer.
Many of my posts and emails to you have been recorded on my phone, transcribed, tidied up and then sent out.
Neither of these is perfect but to me it’s certainly a lot easier and smoother for me than typing away at the computer every day.
With the rise in popularity of internet, online marketing tips and strategies are everywhere.
Courses on how to build your websites, the do’s and don’t’s of SEO, where to list to boost you Google ranking the list is endless.
And online marketing is one of the strategies that you should have in your marketing arsenal.
But it should not be the only one.
Many proven offline methods are simply forgotten when marketing campaigns are planned.
Building your presence through tried and tested offline methods is also going to help you to boost your bank balance, with a distinct value that shouldn’t be forgotten.
Often forgotten methods include:
1. Signage at your venue
2. Turning your vehicle into a moving billboard
3. Community or sports sponsorship
4. Donate gift certificates or products as prizes for a local fundraiser
5. Special offers to groups
6. Trade shows
7. Writing articles for the local paper
9. Hosting events
10. Printed brochures
11. Local paper ads
12. Client newsletters
14. Entering awards
15. Speaking at events
Remember, you don’t have to adopt all of these offline marketing strategies. Just try one. Enter for an industry award. Who knows what could happen.
These days we told time and time again about the importance of creating content to help market our businesses.
It’s the information age.
Content is king.
Content and SEO is the key to your success.
My clients often say to me things like ‘ I am a plumber/electrician/fencer ( insert any trade business here), no one wants to know about that.’
And whilst I don’t really want to know how to unblock a toilet, it is only so I can say I don’t know and it is not my department, but we are aspects of everyone’s business that people find really useful.
But where do you start and what can you do to ensure that it is relevant to your products and services?
My suggestion is to reverse engineer your content from the product or service you are selling.
Think about what they end result is first (ie: getting them to call you) and then figure out how to get your potential customer to the same point (ie: thinking, ‘I really need to call a plumber’)
Here is a quick way to get it done.
1) Write down all of the services that you provide.
2) For each services, write down why people call you to get it done.
3) Record the early warning signs of when it might be going pear shaped.
4) Think about what you might tell a customer who is waiting for you to go out.
5) Is there something that they can do to make them more safe or reduce the damage?
In my experience, my clients could write a book on all of the information that they know about their industry and whilst I don’t recommend a whole book, tips and tricks are something that we call want to know. So here is a few examples, 5 Signs Your Toilet Is Blocked, 3 Things To Do Before You Call A Plumber, The Main Cause Of Damage To Your Pipes, How To Clean Out Your Guttering To Avoid A Fire This Summer.
So go forth and inform the people so that they can become your paying people.
· So many things going on in the mind, it is impossible to focus on one thing?
· Trying to juggle too many balls in the air – and dropping them?
· Short tempered easily tired, feel it is all like treading water?
· Feeling unable to take any time off at all, that you have to be "on" all the time?
· Fearing being unable to continue, the stresses are so much that there is no longer any enjoyment in life?
· Constantly worrying about everything that running a business demands?
The stresses of life can have a crippling effect on us, so that our day to day lives seem too challenging, there is no time for yourself; just you on autopilot day in, day out.
Modern life is filled with hassles, deadlines, frustrations, and demands. Stress is so commonplace that it seems like it is just "natural," "the way it is" and something that cannot be avoided.
The number one cause of overwhelming stress for so many business owners is completing tasks within the business that they don’t enjoy doing. Or feel that perhaps they are not properly qualified to do.
There is no glory in thinking that you must complete all the tasks yourself, when you know you would really prefer to hand some of them to someone else.
When you come to understand that outsourcing your requirements can be beneficial both to you and to your business. The relief and sense of freedom will be enormous!
Last year at a meeting with a new client, we discussed his day and how he was struggling to manage it all.
I suggested that he outsource his bookkeeping to a professional service, because:
1) they were properly qualified, and therefore could do the work much more efficiently and in a shorter time frame; 2) they picked up errors that he had been making and under invoicing for 3 months and 3) he was able to focus more on the income producing aspects of his business, such as following up quotes.
His cost for getting the bookkeeping done was under $200.00. The amount of new business he was able to bring in? Over $10,000 worth!
Here are my top three reasons for outsourcing and winning back valuable time:
1) You can boost your own efficiency. Outsourcing can help you focus on the jobs that do matter. For example, bookkeeping isn’t my strength. By hiring someone else do it for me, I have the time to focus on creating content, working with clients and pitching new business. And I know that my accounts will be done correctly.
2) You can grow your business. When you free up your time, you can actually focus on building your business. You can create the time you need to follow up leads, launch products or services and basically, take your business to the next level. all in the time you have.
3) You can build your network. Yes, outsourcing is a great way to grow your network. You hire someone to do your web design or accounting for you and they’re bound to think of you or refer you when they need someone with your expertise. Outsourcing is a great way to support another business while freeing up your time and growing your professional network as well.
You might like to consider outsourcing some or all of the following: accounting and other financial matters; stock management; marketing; using social media effectively; materials & product ordering; diary management - the list goes on.
So, what are you going to outsource this year to boost your efficiency, grow your business and build your network? And get back some worthwhile enjoyment in life!
There are many things that you can do to build your business and reach more customers and one of the great ways to do it is through a strategic alliance.
In fact you are probably already doing it but don’t realise.
Here is what I mean.
You are a plumber and want to add installing air conditioning system to what you do for customers.
You know that it will require some electrical work in most cases, so you have an electrician that you work with so that you can get the job done.
This is basically an informal strategic alliance.
An official definition of strategic alliance from BusinessDictionary.com is
Agreement for cooperation among two or more independent firms to work together toward common objectives. Unlike in a joint venture, firms in a strategic alliance do not form a new entity to further their aims but collaborate while remaining apart and distinct.
More and more small businesses are banding together in less formal ways to form strategic alliances of their own.
What are some of the benefits of forming small business strategic alliances?
As a small business owner, how can you reach out to start conversations with potential allies and what should you look for in a strategic partner?
Small businesses can also use strategic alliances expand their service offering. Establishing strategic alliances with (like minded) businesses that share the same target market and provide products or services that compliment yours. So consider, who has your customers before you? What other trades do you work with? What else do your customers need done to get the job completed?
How do you start the process of creating strategic alliances?
Well, who are you are you already getting in to work on your projects? Who do you refer your customers too? Who refers their customers to you?
You can keep it simple with an email or phone call to have a chat about what you see as the potential benefits to working together are.
Before you start any business arrangement, be it formal or casual, is the performance of due diligence. Like the level of effort required to effectively and efficiently pursue new business, the same research and scrutiny should be leveraged when seeking to develop partnerships.
Make sure that you know that business you are forming a strategic alliance with ticks all the boxes in regards to services, licenses and that you know that they are reliable and do a great job.
After all you have to put your reputation on the line every time you bring them in on a project.
When you are a small business owner, you have to wear many hats.
With 98.6% of construction businesses with fewer than 20 staff their often isn’t money in the business for staff to source new business and new contracts. And this is something that falls to the business owner.
Did you know that the average company with 100 employees has a marketing team of 11 people?
So these companies would spend roughly 11% of their human resources on marketing of the business.
Say you work 40 hours a week (I know, you probably do more) and you spent an hour a weekday on your marketing then that’s roughly 12.5% of your time.
But I know most tradesmen don’t spend anytime actively marketing until they run out of work.
Known as the feast and famine cycle.
Many clients come to me as they don’t have any time or the resources to do the marketing for their business.
And that is normal for small business owners.
They have hit the DIY Ceiling.
You have hit the point where you are no longer able to achieve better result if you continue to do it yourself.
Marketing and sales are a key component to your success.
Nothing takes place without a sale, an exchange of value.
And you can’t sell a secret. If they don’t know you exist, how can they hire you?
The good news is you don’t need a huge marketing team to succeed.
It’s not the size of the marketing department, it’s how effective it is.
Most of these bigger companies make their marketing worthwhile, effective and systemised.
And you can too.
Something that is paint-by-numbers.
So simple even a first year apprentice can do it!
With 90% of the work done-for-you all you need to be able to do are: copy and paste an email, take a USB stick to Officeworks or address an envelope.
See if you qualify to have this system built out for you by booking a Profit Pipeline Audit, to see how to fill the gap in your quotes to sales method.
Have you ever gone out to quote a job that sounded like it was a bit of an issue only to get out there and think ‘I could have told the client how to fix this themselves’ or fixed it for them and not charged?
It happens quite often but I think I might have a suggestion you can try, using something you already have.
I rang my husband today, who is known in some circles as MacGyver, he can fix anything with dental floss, a safety pin and couple of pieces of chewing gum, because I needed him to tell me how to fix something that wasn’t working.
So I tried to explain it in what probably could only be described as ‘Lady’ language and when speaking to tradesmen this often does not compute, so he said to me, ‘Can you Facetime me so I can see what you are talking about?’.
I did and he walked me through how to fix it. Easy.
It sounds so simple and what I’ve realised is that this might be something that is really useful for those of you who constantly finding that you’re dealing with customers that don’t explain something to you and you would benefit from ‘seeing’ the issue.
My tip for today, if you are unsure and would like to see exactly what the client is talking about, you might like to try video calls or Facetime.
Most of us have the facilities on our phone to do it anyway.
It might save you time and hassle when dealing with clients in the future.