As a business owner, you know you must constantly acquire new customers to grow and thrive. That’s why marketing and promotion are such important parts of running a company. Here are seven tips to help you garner new customers.
Word of Mouth
Word of mouth is a powerful tool to promote your business and generate new clients. Why? According to Nielsen, 92% of people trust recommendations from friends and family more than advertising. Furthermore, 74% of people base their purchasing decisions on word of mouth.
Approaching everyone in your daily life, from your relatives to your mail carrier, is the best way to spread the word about your business. Have your elevator pitch down and ensure you mention at least one specific benefit you can provide for clients.
Another way to persuade customers to talk about your business is to offer a referral discount. It’s a win-win for both parties. You’ll bring in new clients and your existing customers will reap the benefits of your discounted services.
Optimize Your Website
A website is a must not only for tax businesses but for all small companies. Create a website that’s responsive, user-friendly and easy on the eyes. Making your site mobile-friendly is essential, too, considering about 50% of website visitors use a cellphone or tablet to do research.
Aside from design, you’ll want to make sure you’re creating relevant, SEO-friendly content (content that is search engine-friendly) and track your website’s performance. All of this may require outside help from an experienced digital marketing agency, but it’ll be well worth the investment in the end.
Another important aspect to consider is getting your business registered with Google My Business. Ensure the phone number on your website has a click-to-call function, and make it easy for a customer to find your contact information when searching online for your services.
Despite the sea of social media platforms available now, Facebook still reaches the broadest audience, as 68% of Americans use Facebook, the third most-visited site in the world. Now, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use other channels since 25% of people use LinkedIn and 24% utilize Twitter. But focus on Facebook first, grow your audience and market share, then expand your social media portfolio by adding in additional channels once you’re ready. With Facebook, you can upload your customers’ email addresses and it will match them to their profile, so you can target ads directly to them. Having your business on Facebook also allows you to stay connected with existing clients and answer any questions or concerns they might have.
When it comes to attracting new customers for your business, it’s a little trickier, but the next tip could help narrow your prospects.
Find Your Target Audience
According to Bain & Company, acquiring a new client costs 6 to 7 times more than retaining an existing one. To avoid wasting money, you want to create strategic ads tailored to your target audience. You might be wondering: Who is my target audience? One way you can find out is to look through your current client database and find common characteristics among them. As you look through your clients’ information, ask yourself questions such as:
- How old are they?
- Do they file as married or single?
- Are they homeowners?
- What is their income bracket?
The answers to these questions can help you develop a customized targeted ad that could lead to more potential clients.
In addition, be cognizant of what social media platforms your clients typically use most often. If you primarily prepare taxes for individuals and families, you might want to focus your efforts on Facebook. If working with business owners is more of your specialty, LinkedIn might be a more suitable route.
If your business isn’t utilizing email marketing, it should. After all, the return on investment is substantial. For every $1 you spend on an email advertisement, you can expect an average return of $38. Email marketing will help grow your business, as 80% of professionals say it drives customer acquisition and retention. Rather than manually entering email addresses and sending out hundreds of separate emails, utilize marketing software such as MailChimp, which pulls email addresses automatically from your customer database and allows you to send one mass email that includes a special offer. Make your emails concise and send 2 to 4 per month to keep your customers engaged.
TaxSlayer Pro offers great tools to help you with your email strategy. We provide a client retention database that allows you, the ERO, to retrieve customer data by exporting it into a list for marketing purposes.
You can consider postcards the precursor to email marketing, but rest assured, sending them is still an effective way to market your business. For direct mail campaigns, the average return on investment is between 18% and 20%. In addition, 56% of consumers who responded went online or to a physical store, and 62% who responded in the past three months made a purchase. When it comes to obtaining new tax clients, focus on new businesses and new homeowners since both will likely need a tax professional.
This might seem like an old-school method, but posting and handing out flyers in your local area is tried and true. Flyers are usually inexpensive to make, so they’ll hardly put a dent in your marketing budget. Plus, you can stick them almost anywhere (be sure to get proper permissions if required): bulletin boards, pizza shops, grocery stores, utility poles, etc.
Your flyer should be attractive enough to catch the eyes of passersby. If you’re not well-versed in graphic design, it may be best to outsource this job to a professional. In addition to being pretty, your flyer needs to be well-written, include an enticing offer and have a strong call to action. Once you complete your flyer, you’ll be surprised how beneficial this marketing tactic can help grow your tax preparation business.