HER FACE SAID IT ALL
The pained face of this retailer was all too familiar. “People are coming in less… sending less, ordering cheaper stuff online.” Barb explained. Like many business owners, she was experiencing lower sales as a direct result of the credit and stock market crunches. “I can’t do anything about the economy,” she said, “can I somehow use marketing to get out of this mess?” “No, Barb,” I replied. “But you can do better marketing to get you through it, and if you do it right, you can end up ahead of your competitors at the end.”
Many businesses are reining in marketing budgets because they don’t believe it will be possible to get a return on their investment during these troubled economic times. But with few exceptions, cutting spending is NOT the answer. Spending more efficiently and being more effective with your marketing will not only keep you going, it will help you get in great shape for the future.
HERE ARE THE STEPS I SUGGEST:
#1 CUSTOMER RESEARCH –
you should have done this long ago, but now it is critical. Make sure you are giving customers what they want and need right now. Find out what
you do well and what you could do better. Ask those who come in your business, or get on the phone and interview customers, and take
detailed survey. Use a professional or do it your self. Just get some feedback now.
#2 EXISTING CUSTOMERS –
focus more of your promotions on existing customers. They are usually your best source for revenue in the short term. Like research, this is a program you probably should have done anyway. And this group responds best to your offers, so get busy.
#3 BECOME ESSENTIAL –
if you are a jeweler, you appear to be a luxury. You can’t become essential by taking their kids to school though that may be appreciated. You can offer free minor repairs, free cleanings and help selling old gold and jewelry. Every business must find a way to become essential to customers.
– Instead of price cuts across the board that will ruin you in the long run, now is the time to run promotions that encourage multiple or additional sales.
Customer rewards programs are great and don’t have to be fancy. For example, you can ask customers to save their receipts and bring them in. For every $125 worth of receipts, they could earn a $25 gift certificate good on a purchase of $50. Host a “Wall Street Sale” with prices “lower than the stock market” for one night only. Coupons are making a huge comeback. Don’t forget the online versions for the 18-25 year olds. Let a coupon
code be as good as the actual coupon.
Stay Tuned and Stay Smart.
Questions, comments?Questions, comments?
Contact George Farris at firstname.lastname@example.org@farrismarketing.com