To grow your business, follow the right sequence of steps.
Here are four ways to grow your business.
A. You can focus on market penetration and sell more of the same product or service to more of the same people. This notion is commonly known as up selling or cross selling.
B. You can sell different products or services to your existing customers.
C. You can take your existing offerings out to new markets.
D. You can create new products and services for new markets and customers.
The highest probability, lowest risk strategy is “A”. The second lowest risk, fastest payback is “B.” Yet, time and again business owners by-pass these two steps and leap right into higher risk “C” and “D” strategies. Never make this the first thing you do. Instead find ways to increase the effectiveness and productivity in step “A” before moving on.
Improving your “A” game will take your venture up the growth ladder, and that will be great, and great is good, you want as much of great as you can get.
Here’s what one business owner I know has done to improve his “A” game.
Jack Wilson, (not his real name) owns a local floor and window covering business. It doesn’t really matter what kind of business Jack owns because any business owner can do this.
To play the “A” game to win, Jack regularly and routinely makes something we call Customer Care Calls. The profits from this activity are enormous and easy to generate, especially when compared to all other growth activities.
Here’s what Jack does.
Every Tuesday morning Jack sets aside a time block of one hour, between 10:00 AM and 11:00 AM. During this dedicated Focus Time period Jack is on the phone. He makes calls to some of his existing customers. He sets aside one full hour as his objective is to keep dialing until he actually speaks to six individuals. If he speaks to his six in the first 10 minutes he’s finished.
If Jack does not get through to the person he is trying to reach, and there is a way for him to leave a message, he simply says, “This is Jack Wilson from Carpets Are Us and I will try reaching you at another time.” Then he calls them back the next Tuesday morning.
For the six individuals he does reach on his phone call, the conversation goes something like this. “Hi Bill, this is Jack Wilson from Carpets Are Us. As you know, we installed new carpeting in your living room about three weeks ago and I’m just calling today to see that everything is fine and dandy. Is it?”
Bill answers and says he and his wife and kids love the new carpet and that things are just fine.
Then, and here’s the good part, Jack says, “Well, I remember when we were out there that your wife asked me to take a look at your kitchen floor. Apparently she thinks the linoleum is starting to look a bit dated. So I was just wondering if it might be time for me to come show you some samples of what we might do to brighten up your kitchen for you. I have my appointment schedule in front of me, do you think later this week or early next week I might stop by?”
Then he stops talking and waits.
About half of the time this works, Jack gets an appointment to come show his previous customers something else. And most often his follow-up appointments and presentations result in more work and more income for Jack. This is very good of course.
Here’s the thing. When you make Customer Care Calls, you are talking to people who already know you, like, and trust you enough to have recently already purchased something from you. Repeat sales are so much easier to make than brand new ones for this reason.
Now Customer Care Calls are not going to be possible for every type of business. For example, owners of grocery stores and many retail establishments rarely know the phone numbers of their customers. For them up selling and cross selling can happen in other ways, but not by Customer Care Calls. But for those businesses where customer’s phone numbers are known, it ought to be full speed ahead.
To set started with Customer Care Calls for your business, simply make a list of recent customers or clients, whatever term you use to refer to recent buyers, and set aside a time block when you can call them without interruption. You get to decide how any individuals you wish to speak to, six, four, or eleven whatever. And I recommend that you leave no message other than that you called and will try again at another time.
This always works.
Over the years I’ve coached all sorts of people through this process, you name it, insurance agents, real estate agents, construction company owners, caterers, sign makers, investment advisers, accountants, advertising executives, IT company owners, automotive repair shop owners, dentists, dog trainers, psychotherapists, and more.
So do the proactive thing. Instead of waiting around for potential customers to contact you, make a few strategic phone Customer Care Calls and generate some easy sales every week.
Any business owner and/or professional person, utilizing targeted Customer Care Calls, can sell more of the same stuff to the same buyers who already know them. There is no rocket science to this. It’s just the smart thing to do.
There is never sense in ignoring opportunity so you should start making Customer Care Calls tomorrow.
Of course, there are other ways to up sell and cross sell – to play the “A” game – Customer Care Calls just happen to be one of my favorite because you are totally and fully and completely in charge of this make more money activity. That’s a good thing.
If you are reluctant to do this for any reason please call me immediately and I’ll convince you to incorporate this top money making activity as part of your regular routine. Then INCOME DOUBLE & HALF THE TROUBLE will be right around the corner.
Seriously, if you have trouble dealing with any part of your business life at any time, you call me, okay.