Marketing Key #7 of 13

Marketing Key #7 – Be a resource to your customers.

You absolutely have to be more than just the person/company your customer calls when they need to purchase your service. Do whatever it takes to be the industry expert in your customers eyes.

1. Send them the occasional email with a link to an article that relates to their business. Google News Alerts makes finding articles very easy.

2. Stop by with a magazine or newspaper article that relates to their industry.

3. Share information about one of their competitors

4. Share ideas about their website

5. Introduce them to people in your network that they would like to meet.

6. Basically, be proactive in providing your clients with information that will make them more informed, more successful and more reliant on you as the go to guy/girl.

If you really want to be viewed as a business partner versus a business vendor, this approach is an absolute must.

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People buy people

Its important to remember that when customers or companies buy a service, they are really buying the person selling the service. Do your customers want to buy you? Do you have people within your company that customers want to buy?

Your service is doomed to fail if you don’t have “buyable” people selling it.

Marketing Key #6 of 13

Marketing Key #6 – Customer referrals are key to growth

Referrals and endorsements are an important part of any business. There is nothing more powerful than a friend or trusted colleague recommending a product or service. But there is an important difference between product or service referrals. Let’s examine.

Product: Let’s say your neighbor knows you need a new lawn mower. He loves his and recommends that you buy the same model. At this point there are a number of things you might do. Maybe ask your neighbor if you can try his lawn mower out. Maybe head to the local Home Depot to speak with someone and see how much it costs. Maybe even check out Consumer Reports to see how they rate the model. Lot’s of solid options to take advantage of before making your decision. And let’s say you do buy the lawn mower and it does not work out, you always have the option of returning it.

Service: Let’s say the same neighbor knows you are looking for someone to mount a flat screen TV on your wall. He had someone do the same thing about 6 months ago and has all sorts of good things to say about the guy. So now what are your options? You can have the guy come out and give you a estimate, but that’s about it. There’s no testing. No expert at your local store. And certainly no returning it if you are not happy.

This is the main difference. I have said this many times, its all about trust when it comes to purchasing a service. And for the most part, people trust referrals from people they know. Referrals are a key component to growing a service business.