Apparently so. A bit off -topic for me, but this is important, none the less.
This morning I met with a small business owner (don’t want to expose him), who is in a high tech business, providing services based on new technology, being in business for 23 years (!).
What amazes me, is that people like him exist, operating a business with no marketing efforts, no plan, no unified approach to treating customers, getting new ones, or keeping existing. The guy has been doing very well up until now, just by being LUCKY!
I’ve discoverd that he never “had the need” for a website (elementary, Watson!), never had “DataBase Marketing” activities, just did the right thing, and hoped for the best.
For me, it is difficult to understant, but I can’t argue with the result. For MOST businesses, this approach will send you bankrupt! Very few businesses have their stars lined-up like this dudes’. It is absolutely essetial to be visible, to keep in touch with clients, to keep them updated with latest trends, products and services, and keep a close watch on their businesses, to be able to offer a solution, even before they have a problem.Sounds like a lot of work? It doesn’t have to be.
A monthly, bi monthly or quaterly (at the minimum) newsletter will do the trick. if you’re more current, you can send personalized emails periodically, or if you’re really tech savvy – a blog is a great tool to keep in touch. It is also very important to LISTEN to the clients, “milk” responses and comments from them – testimonials are great, but compaints and constructive criticism are even better – it will help you grow properly!
It is important to have a strategy ( 1 page will do) of :
1. How to gain market share – increase the number of clients you have.
2. How to gain wallet share – to increase the account size, sell more products to existing clients.
3. How to maintain the client base – what can you do to make sure the clients you’ve acquired, will stay with you.
Someone once said :” The best way to predict the future is to create it “. Don’t be lucky with your business. Plan ahead, and succeed by design.
If you have stories of “succeeding against the odds”, please share with me.