5 Ways to Stay Ahead of Your Competitors
If you are looking for ways to increase your sales without spending too much, online marketing is the way to go. Many entrepreneurs are under the impression that marketing is expensive and that the only way to sell products or services is through door-to-door or one on-one sales methods. This month’s blog article will give you 5 easy and cost effective ways to increase your sales without breaking the bank.
Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing but nobody else does. ~ Steuart Henderson Britt
Imagine making money while you sleep, literally! Here’s how:
1. Advertise on Google eg pay per click / Google adwords.
2. Advertise on Social Media eg Facebook / Twitter etc
3. Setup an online store complete with a built-in card facility from WAPPoint or link your facebook account to an online payment method through WAPPoint and your website will make money while you sleep.
4. Build up a database of your customers or leads and use email marketing to communicate at regular intervals. This will also increase your sales from existing clients and potentially give you new clients through referrals.
5. Register with Google Analytics, Google Places and other free services to monitor your online statistics
Defining your financial goals and marketing strategy is the first step to achieve the results that you want and marketing is the psychology of business. You need to put yourself in your customer’s shoes in order to attract the right people to your products / services and understand their needs in order to give them what they want. For example, a guest house owner should spend a night in his/her accommodations to experience what their guests experience. By doing this, the guest house owner will realise any problems a guest would have and be able to fix these problems before they cost him / her many future lost clients.
Here are a 5 key points that you need to incorporate to help you maximise growth:
Know Your Target Market
Identify your ideal customer. An ideal customer is a client that generates a good profit for your business or someone who will be loyal to your company or brand for many years. Good clients can also be clients who are simply hassle free. Defining your target market is key because the wrong clients can cost you money, time or resources. Many sales people / business owners waste time on chasing leads that will never buy from the company – cold calling can be seen as a numbers game but is it actually a waste of time? Rather put your energy into the clients that will buy and without too much convincing. Not everyone is a customer so the basis of principle is “Don’t spend money on people who won’t spend money on you”.
- When looking at potential marketing strategies, define your ideal customer profile.
- Understand your demographics better by choosing the age, gender, social and income groups that suit your product or service best.
- Location location location! Define where your target audiences are based. If you are a restaurant in Cape Town, there won’t be any point advertising to people in non-surrounding areas.
Use this information to setup your Google ad words campaigns or social media campaigns. These demographics and location based settings will tell these systems to only advertise to your ideal customers and soon the inquiries or sales will begin poring in from the right sources.
Know Your Product & Position in the Market
Keep up to date with what competitors are doing and ensure that you offer something unique and valuable to make you stand out to potential clients. The following characteristics will help you define your position in the market and help you to then establish how to attract the customers you want.
- Price – Do you want to be defined as the low-cost, premium or niche market solution?
- Product – Is your product packaging doing you justice to create brand awareness / if you are providing a service, is every “touch point” in your delivery of the service creating a good customer experience? This may include your website, the way your employees work with customers, email communication, pamphlets etc. To get help with graphic designs, creating a new website or explainer video, we recommend a website called www.fiverr.com as they offer low cost design solutions on a project basis.
- Place – Is your location attracting the right customers to your business or are you easy to locate when customers need you? Link your business location on Google Places so that it can come up in search engines. If you are not tied to a brick and mortar solution, can customers find you online?
- Promotion – Are you promoting your business in the best possible methods? Does your marketing communication effectively catch the interest of your target market and does it generate reliable business opportunities? For example, a garden service dropping flyers in local post boxes may be very successful but a retail store following the same marketing method would not benefit as much. Email marketing is also a very effective way to engage customers who have subscribed to receive email from you. We recommend using www.123media.co.za as they offer user friendly technology with built in unsubscribe functions, statistics, click tracking and more.
Once you have your facebook page or website setup, chat with us about integrating a card payment method into it. Our solutions are low cost and easy to integrate and having this benefit will increase your sales and close rate drastically.
Keep Track and Measure everything
- Now that you are spending some money on marketing whether it was on building a website or advertising, measure the success of this by creating a Google Analytics account and checking your website statistics. These can show you how many visitors went to your website, where they come from and how they travel through your site. These statistics can help you make adjustments where necessary.
- Take your strategy and find numbers that will indicate whether it is working or not
- Financial (sales revenues, profits, losses)
- Marketing (traffic, incoming leads/opportunities, outbound opportunities)
- Sales (time taken to close a sale, production to sale time, frequency of sales)
- Customer Service (number of complaints, refunds/cancellations
- Compare stats!
- Here is a quick example of how to calculate the value of a lead and align it with your financial goals.
Financial Goal = R100 000
The Value of 1 sale = R1000 profit
Lead Conversion Rate = 20% (2 sales/10 leads * 100 = 20%)
Average Lead Value = R200 (R1000 * 20%)
Leads needed = 500 (R100,000 / 200 )
Get in touch with our team today and find out how you can take your business where it’s never been before.