Just like your spring wardrobe, you may not have spent a lot of money on giving your business a new look but with a new shade of lipstick you are attractive and in style. You studied trends and shopped wisely while continuing to invest in your image.
If we look back to September 11th, one of the most dramatic events in our recent history, we will discovered companies that continued to invest in themselves reaped the rewards of increased business. They stayed in front of their customers and demonstrated their true belief in our country and in their business. Their investment softened the long term effects of the economic downturn and created success.
Recently, some business owners got spoiled with rapid growth and high dollar receipts. They did not spend time training employees on cross selling, customer service or enhancing their technical skills. Educated and happy employee are less stressed, more effective and motivated to support their companies.
Look to your Customer Service Department. Your customer service staff receives and delivers valuable information to your customers every single day. Why not teach them to sell and keep them motivated to act as sale representatives. Incoming calls are much easier to convert into a sale than a cold call. Invite your customer service representives to marketing and sales meetings to develop their sales skills. When the phones are not ringing, discuss call trends. What are your customers saying? Are they suggesting new products or services. When customers have a complaint what are customer services representatives doing to change the customers mind about your company? What seems to motivate your customers to call in? What incentive do you offer your customers to continue to do business with you?
Cutting back on your marketing budget and overallimage will not only get tongues wagging, it will not provide you withcontinued exposure. If you move to a cheaper location you will be less visible and the your existing customers will get the impression that you may be edging closer to going out of business. Your employees must believe that you firmly believe in your business and are striving for success. The more positive your customer’s and employee’s experience is withyour company, the more word of mouth marketing you will receive. As our economy begins to become more positive you will find yourself ahead of the competition.
- What is new in your industry?
- What seems to be working for your competitors and those in complementary industries?
- Who can you collaborate with to create a non-competitive canpaign?
- Do you have an interesting story?
- Is your website easy and fun to use?
- Do your employees survey their customers?
- Do your employees really know about your products and services?
- When was your last positive all hands meeting?
- Do you have a customer and employee incentive program?
- Have you considered moving to a better location taking advantage of lower rent?
- Have you taken advantage of a marketing interns?
- Do you reach out to your community? Do you host open houses and fun events?
- Do you post interesting and informative blogs each week?
- Do you research current and effective keywords?
Put some lipstick on your business and go out there and make them take notice!