Give them a taster - the ‘Pringle’ effect
As mentioned elsewhere on this site, the internet has ‘moved the free line’ – customers are able to find more free information than ever before, so this has raised expectation. Prospects now need to have an average of 10 interactions with a business before buying from you. They have to ‘knowy ou, like you, trust you’ ... and only then buy from you. So, find something which is low cost to create but represents high quality and value to the customer, and give it away. This can be a free sample, or information - tips, tricks and resources relevant to your business and something your customer needs and will appreciate. They will remember you when they are ready to buy. In exchange for the free information, you can collect details of prospective customers – their name and email address at minimum. This is the beginning of your customer list which can then be used to offer further products and services later.
Theatricality – not drama!
Be theatrical in your creative business, be dynamic, be attractive to your customers ... but remove the ‘drama’ from the purchase process, and make it as smooth and easy as possible for the customer to buy from you. Make sure your ‘customer service’ supports the whole process every step of the way, including ‘after sales’.
Work as a team
The Olympic opening ceremony was an incredible exercise in team work. Despite most of the 10,000 volunteers being untrained, they attended 100’s of rehearsals to learn to movese amlessly in unison. Apparently the show Directors used specialists in ‘crowd movement’ to organise the movements of all those people with mathematical precision – resulting in the smooth flow of the action witnessed on the night.
All elements of your business should work together. Marketing should dovetail with production - if you can’t produce the item the marketing department directs customers to, the customer will soon go elsewhere. If customers are flooding to a special offer but the sales department is not staffed well enough to handle all the sales, the same will happen. All this applies even if *you alone* are the production team, the marketing and the customer service department all rolled into one!
Leave happiness in your wake
The 80,000-strong stadium audience left the opening ceremony on a ‘high’ after the amazing spectacle they witnessed, and audiences around the world endlessly discussed it with friends and colleagues the following day. A business needs to go the ‘extra mile’ to delight their customers nowadays, and keep them coming back for more. It is 5 times less expensive to sell to a current customer than to find a new one. So nurture your customers consistently, and keep them coming back for more.
Depending on the type of business, you could follow up a month or so after a purchase to find out how things are going, or offer them an upgrade or complimentary product which would dovetail with what they have bought. Many businesses even go so far as to send customers a birthday card – this is an especially good idea if your business offers something to do with ‘life events’ e.g. birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, event management, gift supplier, and so on.