Do you want more qualified customers?
Do you want to connect with them in a powerful way?
If so, you’re in the right place.
Developing quality customer relationships is essential for a thriving business. Finding them is tough enough. But getting them to fall in love with your brand is even more difficult.
In this article, you will learn:
- What farmers know that can help you get more customers
- What your customers want that you probably don’t have
- How your free offer makes you more money than any other
- The three types of benefits every irresistible offer has
Here’s the biggest obstacle that stands between you and the customers you want:
People are being bombarded with thousands of marketing messages every day. They all make big, bold, promises. Some deliver, most don’t. This has made consumers skeptical and cynical. They don’t trust anyone, including you.
This puts you in a difficult position. First, you must show people how your business can help them in a unique and special way. Then, you must earn their trust before they will buy.
As hard is this may seem, premium brands attract new customers that love them and buy again and again.
Read on to find out how premium brand strategy will help you attract the kinds of customers you want.
Attracting Customers Is Like Farming
Each marketing activity is like a seed planted in the ground that will (hopefully) produce a crop. Since you never know which seeds will yield fruit, you must sow as many as you can.
But successful farmers know something that many business owners don’t.
More seeds will grow when you prepare the field.
Most small business owners think getting in front of as many people as they can is the key to hitting sales goals. This is true to some degree. But they are missing an important piece of the customer acquisition equation.
Business owners want leads but aren’t prepared for them when they show up.
Businesses spend so much time trying to get leads and make sales, they forget the prep work than must be done first. As a result, they end up spending more time and money on marketing than they have to. Meanwhile, they fail to make the most of each opportunity.
What’s more, they aren’t set up to make the most of every new customer they get.
Now, I will show you how to avoid this problem and what you can do that will change the way you market your business.
Create a Customer Journey to Increase Profit
When you find a potential customer, the ideal goal is to sell them your premium product or service. Not only will you make more money, it’s the one that delivers the most value. Your premium offer is you at your best (at least, it should be).
But not everyone will buy your premium offer right away. Some people won’t see the value of it, others simply don’t need it. When business owners sense this, they usually present a lower-priced solution instead.
Sometimes this is in the form of a compromise with the customer–fewer benefits at a lower price. Other times, it’s a limited supply of a product or only one part of a service.
And why not? After all, selling something is better than selling nothing. Right?
There are a few problems with this approach, among them:
- you have de-valued your premium product or service by compromising your offer
- in the customer’s mind, you have given them what they want and they no longer have incentive to buy more
- the customer may end up disappointed with the new compromised (“scaled-down”) version
There is a better way to manage those who don’t buy your premium offer up front. It starts with having an offer to accommodate prospects in each step of the customer journey.
Create contrasting offers for customers with a variety of wants or needs. Each of these provides a benefit while leading them to another sale, usually at a higher price.
Free or low-priced offers introduce people to your brand. These are people who have never heard of you before and aren’t familiar with your solution.
Mid-level offers are for those with specific problems. These offers come with an opportunity to upgrade. As always, your premium offer is still available to anyone who wants it.
To illustrate how this works, I’ll use an example for a brick-and-mortar store. But the model is even easier for an online business.
Let’s say you sell tires. Some of your customers will only want cheap ones. Others may need a replacement tire and will only buy one or two at a time. There are others still who will want the best tires available.
You could run a promotion to repair flat tires for free. People that come in for this free repair would get a credit toward a new set of tires. This gives them an incentive to buy from you when they are ready.
If someone only wants one or two tires, you could make them a limited time offer to get four tires for the price of three. Adding a free oil change if they buy sweetens the offer.
In the meantime, you can stay in touch with them through an occasional email. This gives you a chance to run special promotions or educate them on other services you provide. You could also sell a membership that customers can use to get oil changes or discounts on repairs.
The possibilities are endless. But the point I want to make is that you should build a bridge between offers. Each one should deliver a benefit and encourage people to buy a higher-priced offer.
Keep in mind that there must be significant contrast between each offer. Having two that are similar—if only in appearance—will hurt sales.
As an example, let’s say you’re a service provider with a $900 package and a $1,500 package. If you don’t give significantly more for the $1,500 version, people will always think the $900 one is the better value.
Creating a customer journey can be a complex process, so take it one step at a time. Don’t try to do too much at once. Focus on your flagship and free offers first, then build others around them.
How Free Offers Attract More Customers
One day, my dog Rusty started licking his feet and wouldn’t stop. I didn’t think much of it at first. Finally, I broke down and took him to the vet.
It turns out he had food allergies.
I went online and found a website that explained which foods caused allergies in dogs. As I began to scan over it, a pop-up form appeared. It asked if I would like to have a list of ten recipes, each made especially for dogs with allergies.
The recipes were free. All I had to do was provide my email address. So, I did.
In the marketing world, this free list of recipes is an example of a lead magnet. A lead magnet is an offer with real value. It’s free on one condition: the prospect must give the business an email address to get it.
This is a common marketing strategy that most of us have seen before.
The idea is that once you have the prospect’s email address, you can stay in touch with them. Over time, a percentage of the people on your email list will become customers.
This is a great strategy, yet many of them don’t work well.
- the free offer isn’t valuable enough
- the free offer doesn’t lead the customer to the next step in the buying process
A lot of business owners are afraid of giving away too much value for free. I know because I used to be one of them.
But think about it. You only get one chance to make a good first impression. So, your first offer must be really, really good.
If it isn’t, most people won’t consider buying anything from you.
Unfortunately, many business owners don’t make their lead magnet valuable enough. When it doesn’t yield the response they’re looking for, they wonder why.
Others have a great lead magnet but don’t use it to lead prospects to the next step. Your lead magnet should generate more interest in your business. It should also prompt people to buy something from you.
Keep in mind that people aren’t likely to jump from a free offer to your high-end product or service. You need to bridge the gap with a lower-priced offer. Having only one of these lower-priced offers will make a difference.
Why an Ideal Customer Profile Is Critical for Business Growth
Now let’s explore another piece of the customer acquisition puzzle–the ideal customer profile.
It’s impossible to hit a target if you don’t have one at which to aim. Having an ideal target will help you stay focused on exactly who you should be looking for.
Vince Lombardi, Hall-of-Fame NFL Head Coach
“Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence.”
There is no such thing as the “perfect” customer. But if you pursue them, the quality of the ones you get will naturally improve.
Your ideal customer profile is part of your brand identity. Your business can’t exist without the group of people it serves. Your goal is to meet their needs at the highest level possible.
To do that, you must know who they are, how they think, and what is important to them.
Having an ideal customer persona gives you a competitive advantage. Most businesses only go surface-deep when profiling their customers. They usually rely on basic demographics like sex, age, income, and net worth.
Knowing your ideal customer better than anyone else helps you connect with them better than anyone can. Let’s look at a two-fold approach to profiling that will help you discover who your ideal customers are.
If you want to exceed your customer’s expectations, you must first know what they expect.
To do this, use the “pain-solution” method popular among marketers today. Start with the problem your product or service solves (solution). Then identify the group of people who have that problem (pain).
This group of people becomes a target customer segment.
Remember, consumers don’t care that you think you’re great at what you do. They only care about what matters to them.
Many businesses want people to know how great they are and how much they care about their customers. But people don’t buy from a business for these reasons.
Instead, they buy because the business has something they need or want.
PRO TIP: The degree of your customer’s need or want will help determine how much you can charge for it. This is a must if you want to sell your products and services at a premium.
- What do people want more than anything else that you can help them get? To help with this process, think about what a typical day looks like for them.
- How do their problems make them feel, physically and emotionally?
- What are their frustrations?
- Where do they spend a lot of time?
- Where do they look for solutions?
It’s tempting (and easier) to make assumptions in this step. You may think you already know the answers. But feedback and insight from your actual customer base often tells another story.
Many times, you will uncover needs and wants you never knew existed, simply by asking them. This information will also give you a better idea of the people your business is best qualified to serve.
While putting your customer first is critical, you must also think about your goals.
How many of us would stay in business even if we never made a dime?
Probably not many.
That is why you must consider your business goals as you develop an ideal customer profile. After all, you have needs too and if those needs aren’t met, you won’t stay in business.
I see it all the time. Well-meaning business owners go to great lengths to make customers happy. They want to help people and make an impact. But they also have salaries and bills to pay.
To please customers, they meet every demand, discount prices, and run themselves ragged. Eventually, the business owner burns out and closes the shop.
What they’re making isn’t worth the headaches or loss of sleep.
The customers you pursue must align with your business goals.
Check your current customer base and write down the names of your top five or ten customers. They should also be the ones who provide a large percentage of annual revenue.
What common characteristics and traits do they have?
These people are your best customers for a reason. This should give you some insight into the types of prospects you want to target going forward. Don’t rely on surface demographics, look for people you enjoy working with.
Build a Bridge
You must position your product or service as the perfect solution for your customer. The best products and services help people on many levels. You can to this too.
List all the benefits of your product or service. Write down as many as you can.
Then place each benefit into one of the following categories:
Functional benefits represent what the product or service does. As an example, a hammer drives nails in the wall.
Technical benefits refer to the features or specifications of a product or service. A better hammer is higher in quality and will last longer.
Emotional benefits give the customer a special feeling when engaging with your brand. A hammer made for builders may give the user the feeling that they are somehow a better carpenter.
This may sound silly, but emotion is a powerful buying motivator.
If you deliver all three types of benefits, you will have an advantage over competitors. Most businesses haven’t developed this kind of depth for their offers. They have only one or two benefit levels, but not all three.
The process I have outlined in this article is simple but is not always easy. Remember the following:
Prepare the fields. Spend time creating your customer journey. Be ready to meet every prospect in each phase of the buying process. Have lower-priced offers that provide value and leave customers wanting more.
You only get one chance to make a first impression. For that reason, your free offer must be great, not just good.
Create your ideal customer profile. Perfect customers may not exist, but the best ones do. This profile keeps you looking for customers that will help you achieve your goals.
Make sure every offer delivers three types of benefits. These are functional, technical, and emotional benefits. Remember that emotional benefits are the most powerful.
If you want to know more about how to do this, click here and read this article.
Remember, we are here if you need help. Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Until next time,