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5 Great Tips to Attract New Customers If You Are a Small Business

5 Great Tips to Attract New Customers If You Are a Small Business

Building a steady stream of new customers can seem like a complex task, especially if you are a small business. You have a great vision for your company, but you can’t prosper only on word of mouth. Try these 5 tips to get your company noticed and attract new customers.

Register on Lead Generation Platforms

To build a solid client portfolio, you need to attract visitors to your website, convert them into leads and only then can you close them as customers. But how can you accelerate this process?

There are websites and platforms that help small and midsized businesses generate leads right away. Thumbtack, BuyerZone, Opporty, Kinnek, ZocDoc, BuildingPros, HomeContractors.biz, Upcounsel.com, Service.ariba.com – just to name a few.

There are niche-focused lead generation platforms, as well as general purpose ones. Just google a platform for your industry and start attracting solid leads in no time. Leads from such platforms are more interested in a product or service your business offers, and, therefore, they are a much safer pick if you are a beginner and push hard to cut marketing costs.

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Nurture Relationships with Businesses & Professionals

Referrals and recommendations play a huge role in attracting high-quality customers. According to the recent report provided by Ambassador, over 80% of Americans seek recommendations from family, friends, professionals and other businesses when considering a purchase. It’s crucial to mix in with people who can refer prospects to your website and popularize your brand.

How do you get noticed and make the right connections?

  • Attend industry-related events and make sure that you stand out from the crowd. For instance, you can make a presentation to showcase your company.
  • Ask questions and start conversations with influential professionals and local gurus. Don’t be afraid of approaching a pro – they seek attention themselves and will be happy to help you (if it’s in their interest, of course).
  • Mention those professionals in your blog posts. Most likely, they will mention you back. Some of them will refer clients to you as well.

As soon as you have nurtured fruitful relationships with influential businesses and industry leaders, you will see a positive difference in traffic, clients and conversions.

Differentiate Your Business from Competitors

What kind of business are you? Have you ever given it a thought? If your answer is ’no’, right now is time to think about that.

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Most likely, your business fills some sort of a void in the market. If it doesn’t, it didn’t make any sense to start it in the first place, right? In any case, you should focus on breaking down your core values because they help differentiate your business from competitors.

Differentiation is by far the most powerful marketing strategy. Your job is to figure out how you stand out from the others and then communicate it to your potential customers. Even if you own a run-of-the-mill business, you can differentiate yourself. Make a unique offer, solve a problem, or just provide top-notch customer service.

You can also build your brand around how different you are (even if you are not). Position your business against competition or let your customers uncover why you are the best in the niche. Just stick to it and be patient. The payoff will be huge.

Understand Why a Customer Should Choose You

To drive traffic and customers to your website, it’s crucial to play to your strengths. Why should customers choose your company over the others? What’s your competitive advantage? Is it high quality? Reasonable pricing? Or unrivaled customer service?

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You must be able to answer the questions above. If you cannot, it simply means that you don’t know your business as you should. And if that’s true, you will never be able to showcase its strengths, not weaknesses, to prospective clients. Identify these strengths and focus your marketing efforts to highlight these reasons.

If you have to operate in a versatile industry, don’t be afraid to collect feedback from your returning customers. Create a brief or survey and ask them to help. No luck? Sugar the deal by offering discounts or special offers to anyone who sends feedback.

Hire a Digital Marketing Agency that Provides Services for Your Niche

If you lack the expertise or time to do this on your own, ask for professional help. Research and hire an agency that provides digital marketing services in your niche. Certified pros will utilize the power of search engine optimization, pay-per-click marketing, and social media marketing to keep the juices flowing to your website.

How to choose a digital marketing agency? Ask your friends and relatives for referrals; check reviews on Google, Yelp and LinkedIn; search for companies that cater specifically for your industry.

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Basically, you need to find an agency that is experienced in your industry niche and ready to go the extra mile for you. Let the professionals audit your website and devise a detailed digital marketing strategy for your business.

To Sum It Up

Finding new customers is often a fundamental problem for small business owners. Their companies are flexible, but lack marketing dollars to fortify their position in the industry. Don’t worry, you can still attract paying customers without huge budgets.

Use four of the aforesaid tips first and only then consider hiring a digital marketing agency. Most likely, you know your business better than anybody else, so take advantage of it. Create a buzz about your strengths (e.g. expertise, product quality, huge price discounts) and eventually customers will flock to your website.

If nothing helps, don’t be afraid to contact a professional. The chances are your website isn’t optimized properly, or suffers from poor usability, etc. Invest in digital marketing and, in most cases, you will see the results within a month.

Featured photo credit: startupstockphotos.com via pexels.com

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Jane Hurst

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Last Updated on August 4, 2020

The Gentle Art of Saying No For a Less Stressful Life

The Gentle Art of Saying No For a Less Stressful Life

No!

It’s a simple fact that you can never be productive if you take on too many commitments — you simply spread yourself too thin and will not be able to get anything done, at least not well or on time.

But requests for your time are coming in all the time — through phone, email, IM or in person. To stay productive, and minimize stress, you have to learn the Gentle Art of Saying No — an art that many people have problems with.

What’s so hard about saying no? Well, to start with, it can hurt, anger or disappoint the person you’re saying “no” to, and that’s not usually a fun task. Second, if you hope to work with that person in the future, you’ll want to continue to have a good relationship with that person, and saying “no” in the wrong way can jeopardize that.

But it doesn’t have to be difficult or hard on your relationship. Here’s how to master the Gentle Art of Saying No:

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1. Value Your Time

Know your commitments, and how valuable your precious time is. Then, when someone asks you to dedicate some of your time to a new commitment, you’ll know that you simply cannot do it. And tell them that: “I just can’t right now … my plate is overloaded as it is.”

2. Know Your Priorities

Even if you do have some extra time (which for many of us is rare), is this new commitment really the way you want to spend that time?

For myself, I know that more commitments means less time with my wife and kids, who are more important to me than anything.

3. Practice Saying No

Practice makes perfect. Saying “no” as often as you can is a great way to get better at it and more comfortable with saying the word. And sometimes, repeating the word is the only way to get a message through to extremely persistent people. When they keep insisting, just keep saying no. Eventually, they’ll get the message.

4. Don’t Apologize

A common way to start out is “I’m sorry but …” as people think that it sounds more polite. While politeness is important, apologizing just makes it sound weaker. You need to be firm, and unapologetic about guarding your time.

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5. Stop Being Nice

Again, it’s important to be polite, but being nice by saying yes all the time only hurts you. When you make it easy for people to grab your time (or money), they will continue to do it. But if you erect a wall, they will look for easier targets.

Show them that your time is well guarded by being firm and turning down as many requests (that are not on your top priority list) as possible.

6. Say No to Your Boss

Sometimes we feel that we have to say yes to our boss — they’re our boss, right? And if we say “no,” then we look like we can’t handle the work — at least, that’s the common reasoning.

But in fact, it’s the opposite — explain to your boss that by taking on too many commitments, you are weakening your productivity and jeopardizing your existing commitments. If your boss insists that you take on the project, go over your project or task list and ask him/her to re-prioritize, explaining that there’s only so much you can take on at one time.

7. Pre-Empting

It’s often much easier to pre-empt requests than to say “no” to them after the request has been made. If you know that requests are likely to be made, perhaps in a meeting, just say to everyone as soon as you come into the meeting,

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“Look guys, just to let you know, my week is booked full with some urgent projects and I won’t be able to take on any new requests.”

8. Get Back to You

Instead of providing an answer then and there, it’s often better to tell the person you’ll give their request some thought and get back to them. This will allow you to give it some consideration, and check your commitments and priorities. Then, if you can’t take on the request, simply tell them:

“After giving this some thought, and checking my commitments, I won’t be able to accommodate the request at this time.”

At least you gave it some consideration.

9. Maybe Later

If this is an option that you’d like to keep open, instead of just shutting the door on the person, it’s often better to just say,

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“This sounds like an interesting opportunity, but I just don’t have the time at the moment. Perhaps you could check back with me in [give a time frame].”

Next time, when they check back with you, you might have some free time on your hands.

10. It’s Not You, It’s Me

This classic dating rejection can work in other situations. Don’t be insincere about it, though. Often, the person or project is a good one, but it’s just not right for you, at least not at this time.

Simply say so — you can compliment the idea, the project, the person, the organization … but say that it’s not the right fit, or it’s not what you’re looking for at this time. Only say this if it’s true — people can sense insincerity.

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Featured photo credit: Kyle Glenn via unsplash.com

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