Finding the right way to approach your customer

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When you start a new business the hardest thing always is to reach your customers. Did you find the right way? Have you presented your product in a good way? There are always million questions and you usually don’t have the answer.

So where to begin?

Before we give you some tips about ways to approach your customer it is important first to assess who your customers are and determine their needs and interests. This may save you a tremendous amount of effort to properly define specifically who your customers are: demographically, geographically and as much detail as you can.

Once you do that, it is more feasible to approach them with your product or service, knowing there is a need that you can fill. You are then moving forward with your marketing campaign and it may be important to get your brand out there, so they will see it often.

Advertise somewhere new. Research publications that would appeal to your target market. Start with your local press and then consider regional and trade publications. Look for free sources of advertising, such as local authority magazines and community websites that list small businesses.

Encourage word-of-mouth recommendations. Satisfied customers are the best advocates for your business, so urge them to pass on your details to people they know. Ask friends and family to do the same. Give your referees business cards to hand out and encourage them to provide testimonials for promotional literature.

Offer free samples at local events, so people can try your products before they buy. If you offer a business service, consider offering free advice or an audit. If your samples impress, they will bring new customers through your door.

Get involved in your community. Hold an event for charity, offer your service to a local good cause, volunteer as an expert at talks and events, or back a national awareness week. Send out press releases to local publications in response to current news and trends that are relevant to your industry.

Build partnerships with other businesses. Ask neighbouring businesses to promote your products or services in exchange for mutual recommendations. Advertise Exchange leaflets and business cards so that you can refer new customers on. Look for related businesses to partner with: if you’re a car dealer, for example, hook up with a vehicle repair shop.

Promote yourself with a mailshot. Create and distribute leaflets or carry out an email campaign. Make your marketing eye-catching and consider including a promotion. Make sure you also include your location and contact details. Target your marketing to your local community and beyond to increase your chances of finding new customers.

Call other businesses. If you sell to other businesses, dedicate a day to calling prospective customers. You could be following up on a leaflet drop, mailshot or introductory email. Gauge the level of interest before offering to follow-up with a meeting if necessary.

Start trading online. The Internet is an enormous marketplace in which to find new customers, and gives you the potential to sell to people across the world, 24 hours a day. Test out your online market first by setting up a small shop on ebay, before you invest in a website with a payment facility.

If you would like to add some tip or share your experience feel free to write in comments below.

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