The lifeblood of a business is sales and most businesses owners spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to generate next month’s sales. But what if I told you that you could do this without spending a lot on acquiring new customers?
It’s easier than you think and the answer is right in front you – it’s your current customers.
Before you start looking for new sales leads, look at what you can do to get previous and current customers to generate the sales you need. That’s why it is important to keep in touch with your customers; they are your greatest source of repeat business and are much easier sell to than new customers. They’re your secret goldmine.
Here are some stats to perk you up (yes, sometimes numbers can be as eye-popping as coffee!):
- 90% of sales come from current and returning customers.
- It costs 6-7 times more to gain a new customer than to retain an existing customer.
- Repeat customers spend 67% more.
- After 10 purchases, a customer has already referred up to 7 people.
How can you stay in touch with customers? The most cost-effective way to stay top-of-mind is with email marketing. So, be sure to collect email addresses at the point of sale, your website and social media.
Next, have a plan in place for communicating with current and past customers.
Let’s look at a few email marketing strategies to address each of the strengths we mentioned:
Generating Next Month’s Sales: Look at past sales to determine when your best months are. Also take into account traditional sales periods for your industry.
Then create an editorial and promotions calendar for your communications. This way, you’ll be communicating with your customers at a time when they are most likely to purchase.
For example, a florist interested in capitalizing on Mother’s Day will start emailing their Mother’s Days Specials in April and have a strong promotion in May, a week before the holiday.
Ensure Customer Satisfaction: If you want customers to come back, you’ll need to ensure they have a good experience when they purchase. A great way to do this is by surveying your customers periodically to get their feedback on their most recent sale.
Get More Revenue Per Transaction: It’s easier to upsell a current customer. If they’ve already purchased your basic line of products, you could get them to purchase additional items as well. Or, create a buy one and get a discount on your second purchase deal that you can promote exclusively to existing customers via email.
Get More Referrals: Encourage referrals by offering a friends and family discount they can forward to a friend or share on social media. You may also consider a referral program.
Another way to encourage referrals is with a customer survey as we previously mentioned. You can also ask your customers to give a testimonial you can share on your site. Or, better yet, share a review on LinkedIn or Yelp.
Let’s get those sales caffeinated! If you need a little help with your email marketing, give us a ring at 305.507.7199 or just shoot us a message firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Author
Sandi Abbott is a professional marketer with more than twenty years experience in advertising and marketing. As principal of Xpresso Content Cafe, she helps small businesses increase sales and referrals through interactive digital marketing campaigns. Sign up to receive her monthly digital marketing tips in your inbox. Follow her on Twitter: @xpressocc