Okay, I’ll say it. Things aren’t what they used to be. Consumer buying habits have changed. Traditional media channels are losing listeners. Hundreds of your client emails go unopened. Getting social becomes a whole new way for customers to ignore you. Blah, blah, blah. For any business owner who has sat looking over last month’s sales and wondered “What’s happened?” this is for you!
If this sounds all too familiar, let me pose this question to you; how do we gain the attention of an over-scheduled and over-stimulated new consumer? It’s a complicated problem, but I believe I have a solution to restore some optimism in your outlook. To borrow a quote from the famed Steve Martin, “Be so good they can’t ignore you.”
I love this quote so much. I have it pinned to the bulletin board in my office. It reminds me of what it takes to be successful in this business, or any business—Persistent Excellence. From what customers see online to my storefront, merchandising displays, selection, design, and most importantly, customer service, maintaining consistent quality is the key. Excellence is what builds a reputation and keeps customers coming back.
Maintaining a high level of excellence takes a well-crafted plan and the discipline to stick to it. So, if you’re ready to take the next step and to turn your customers into business boosting referral machines, I’ve got five critical ways to get more customers to notice you.
1) Become an Expert
Inspire customer confidence by becoming a source of valued advice in all kinds of ways. Fill your website with helpful information that customers are searching for, like “how to hang artwork”. Write articles, teach classes, and host business meetings at your shop. By explaining the value of custom framing to customers and potential customers, you build credibility for your company brand.
2) Your Silent Salespeople
Help customers visualize what great custom framing can do with inspired frame displays. Please, I beg you. Don’t be merchandising your store walls with tired, outdated moulding, and boring double mats. Your walls are your resume. Treat them like it! Put those silent salespeople to work by showing off your framing talents.
3) Wow Your Customers
The best way to get referrals is to be so good they want to brag about you. Look for ways to improve the customer experience at the counter. Show them creative ways you can design their project with one-of-a-kind mats cut with your Wizard CMC. Let customers see your care in wrapping their art in tissue paper. Offer a guarantee or free delivery and installation. Showing your expertise, professionalism and personal service is the best way to earn customers referrals…and the best part, it doesn’t cost you a thing.
4) Design Like a Star
Ordinary doesn’t inspire. Get customers excited with creative touches that encourage repeat business. Stack the frames. Show them what your Wizard can do. Be enthusiastic during the design process. It gets them energized about the buying experience, and sets you apart from your competition. Need new ideas to incorporate into your frame design? Check out the Wizard inspiration gallery, or get inspired on Pinterest. You can check out my pins at: https://www.pinterest.com/finerframes/
5) Ask When They’re Smiling
The best time to ask a customer for a referral is when they’re smiling with delight at their new frame. Even if it’s a simple phrase, “Don’t keep us a secret. We love referrals,” don’t miss the chance to let them know how to help your business grow. More formal referral and incentive programs keep customers coming back. But how about trying this to get started? Hand customers a printed “thank you” card asking them to “share the love”. Be sure to include ways for them to leave reviews on your social media platforms.
“Being so good…” takes diligent work and a commitment to excellence in every aspect of your business, from your product to customer care and creativity. Not being ignored is the trick. Following these tips is an important start. Adding a concentrated online marketing strategy that includes a branded website and social media platforms will keep you at the center of attention.
Want more ideas?
Get more business building tips and how-to’s including a detailed year-long marketing plan in my book, “Recharge Your Business” available for purchase via digital download at: www.megglasgow.com