Hopefully you’ve written out your business plan and set your goals for the next 12 to 18 months. Perhaps you’ve even set goals for 2 and 3 years out. Reaching those goals will usually involve increasing your sales. Repeat customers are great; but we all need to find some new customers as well if we want to reach that BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal). This article will discuss strategies to obtain new customers. These strategies are best suited to business-to-business sales, or retail sales of high-ticket items.
In my experience, the strategy that works best is this one: Stop selling! Lead potential customers to make a buying decision. This works at all levels. People like the feeling that they are “buying” rather than the feeling that they have been “sold” something. In fact, people who make an educated decision to buy your product or service are more likely to be happy and loyal customers. They’re even willing to pay a little bit more for the privilege.
What leads a person to make a buying decision? Education!
Education empowers a customer to make a buying decision. Education places your product or service in a more credible light. When you bother to teach prospective customers why your product is the best, you put yourself in the position of being regarded as an expert. This credibility helps to elevate you above your competition.
Here are some action steps toward the goal of winning new customers:
If you have done this properly, you will have a repeat customer and your new customer will provide you with referrals that will be a lot easier to close. When you have properly educated a new customer, it is likely that your new customer will educate others (especially if you taught them well). Knowledge is power. People feel good about telling others they have had a good experience. They like to recommend good products/services to others.