Lesson 2: Creating Customers
Techniques for converting prospects into customers.
2.1 Prospects & Potential Customers
Follow-up really starts when you meet new people at events, conferences, networking groups, or just casually through introductions. Potential customers are at the supermarket, your child’s sports game, standing in line behind you, or in the dentist’s waiting room. The key to turning that casual meeting into an active prospect is follow-up.
In Lesson 1 we touched on how follow-up is applied to new leads acquired through networking. However, as you no doubt already know, there are several ways to generate leads. In this lesson we discuss how to apply effective follow-up to any lead source and how to turn those leads into customers.
2.1.1 Online Presence
If you’re in business today, an online presence is a must.
An online presence begins with a website. Depending on your industry and your specific business needs, it can be a simple one-page information site or landing page, all the way up to a complex, multi-page, full-on encyclopedia of your business and what you have to offer. You decide what will work best for you or contact us and we’ll help you figure out how to get online and give your business a competitive edge.
Consumers today are turning to online sources to help them make their purchasing decisions. They research the products and services, and the businesses that provide them; they read the reviews and testimonials; they poll their networks for recommendations and referrals; they are well educated by the time they are ready to hit the ‘buy’ button.
That’s why having an informative, easy-to-use website that is backed up by reviews and testimonials as well as an engaging social media presence is essential for directing customers to your goods and services.
2.1.2 Social Media
There are many social platforms to choose from today: Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, and Pinterest are just some of the mediums in a growing list of viable social networking sites.
With so many platforms to choose from, it can be overwhelming. The good news is, you don’t need to be on all of them! In fact, spreading your resources too thin is counterproductive. There’s nothing worse than Googling a business and finding an old, abandoned Twitter account sitting among half-baked hashtags and a default profile picture.
Pick the platform(s) that work best for you and your brand
In the beginning, choose one or two platforms, and start there. Do some research, and pick the ones where your target audience is present. The quality of your content reflects on your company, so don’t create profiles for the sake of it. Put your energy into developing and maintaining relevant platforms to avoid seeming like someone who isn’t committed to their business. If you’re looking for some assistance with this aspect of your online presence, contact us and we’ll help you figure it out.
Each connection, response, and follow-up you can make in your social channels solidifies your brand in a consumer’s mind.
Social Media Tips
Choose profile and cover images that accurately reflect your brand – a logo, product sample or a professional image of the business owner are good choices.
Complete your biography, using both the short and long business descriptions, with interesting content that piques the reader’s curiosity.
Fill in all available and applicable fields, especially the contact information.
Add a ‘contact now’ button to Facebook and Instagram so people can call you as an easy next step.
Start by sharing your page with friends and family or people in your company.
Share links with your email contact list.
Follow, join, retweet, share and connect with other users and/or relevant groups.
On sites with tags (like Twitter and Instagram), adding useful tags will help you get discovered.
Make sure to keep your content updated. A page or feed that hasn’t seen new content in weeks or months is worse than having no social media presence at all. It doesn’t have to be daily but once a week is an effective minimum. If you have a blog or newsletter, link that to your social media.
You can hire a social media manager to lighten the load here. Contact us and we’ll put you in touch with someone you can trust.
Most humans have a ‘what’s in it for me’ instinct, so once your immediate friends and family have liked and shared your page, it’s helpful to devise incentive-based offers to create a traffic boon.
Offer goods such as discount vouchers, a free product, or entry into a competition* for sharing a post.
Your pages should be a welcoming environment where people can hang out, express their opinions, and feel included, so always acknowledge people who respond to your content.
Tag people in comments, and like or reply to reviews and posts on your page; even the negative ones. Remember that these people have followers too and every time you engage with them you are building your audience so be kind with your words and keep it light.
Most platforms now provide free analytics which you should take advantage of.
Useful metrics to pay attention to include:
– Number of reactions/shares/comments on a post
– The days and times that users are most active
– How many clicks a link receives
– Demographics of your audience: age, sex, location, interests