Start-up companies are the darlings of the business world. They have that new company smell. No messy paper records, or unfinished business. No broken equipment, or people. On the other hand, existing businesses, have history, traditions, loyal customers. This is for owners of existing businesses who want to rediscover their loyal customer-base before they disappear.
For existing businesses, rediscovering success doesn't require investors, new equipment or technology. All you need is a new attitude. What you need is a new mindset. It's not that business technology has changed. It's the way customers use technology that has changed. Each day the gap between you and your digitally savvy customers widens. Here are 3 steps you can take today to close the gap and help your customers rediscover your business.
Share the News - Reconnect via Email
When's the last time they heard from you? Once a month is too long. All you need is a bit of good news, a place to share it, and a way to invite them to hear your story. Start with their contact info. No Email addresses? Print a postcard-sized invitation they can use to request a coupon or receive a special discount. To take advantage of the offer, they need to visit your website and fill out a request form. You're not asking for their email address. You're extending a special offer to your loyal clients.
Once you have a way to connect via email, start looking for some good news to share. There must be something your organization is doing that's worth a celebration! Publish a digital newsletter, blog post or even a social profile update. Send a link to your good news to your loyal customers.
We Will Be Right With You - Reconnect via Voicemail
Have you ever received an call from an irate customer? Not their first call, the second one. It starts with, "I left a message, did you get it?" Congratulations! At least they called back. Call your business when you're sure no one will answer. (I hope it's not during business hours!). Listen carefully to the message for the following. Does it include the business name, instructions on what to leave, and when you'll get back to them? Setting a reasonable expectation as to when you'll return their call is good business. Give them a digital alternative if all they need is when you're open, your address, other ways to reach you. All customers have access to the Internet. Don't bog down your outgoing announcement with information better accessed via the web. If you simply must record a message longer than 30 seconds, give them a way to opt out. "Press xxx to bypass this announcement."
Come on Down! - Reconnect via Live Video
This is not only cool, it's fun and unexpected. Go stand in front of your business and shoot a quick video. Make sure it contains your name, business name, what you're celebrating, and end with an invitation to stop by. Publish it to social and you're done. Don't worry about your hair, I don't.
Innovate or Die
These ideas can be accomplished using the technology you already have. All you have to do is decide, and take action. You can do it, or your competition can, It's up to you.