Starting a business can actually be pretty easy. It’s making it take off and succeed that is the hard part. You can spend thousands on advertising and create a great business model, but without a customer base, you won’t get very far before running out of money. These days a person can get online or pick up the phone and do business with just about anyone they would like. New businesses pop up everyday offering new ideas and products that may actually be better than yours. There are ways, though, to make sure you don’t lose your customer base to your competitors.
An article from mashable.com offers a few good tips for growing and maintaining your customer base. It lists four tips that are easy to follow and can be integrated into any business plan and in any type of company. The tips include; Being Helpful, Guest Blogging, Traditional PR, and Excellent Customer Service.
When the author of the article talked about being helpful, she didn’t mean the “one-step checkout” kind of helpful. She means that you should be there when customers need you the most. Posting links to helpful tools or solutions on your website is a great place to start. Your goodwill will eventually be noticed. People will want to come to you to do business if they know you will be there if they have a question or problem. With the power of Word of Mouth on top of that, you may see an increase in your customer base as well.
The next tip is a favorite because it’s about blogging! We can’t stress how important a blog can be. Having your own company blog will introduce the reader to not only what is going on within your company, but it will introduce them to your writing style. Your voice can stand out in your writing allowing your customers know exactly what kind of company you are. According to the article, many people use guest blogging as a way of getting their name and company into the public rather than sending out the typical press release. One company in particular found that doing the writing themselves, and on topics that were interesting and helpful to the reader, actually boosted their exposure. The key was blogging on topics directly related to what the company does. Incorporating a catchy title helped too!
Creating traditional PR (Public Relations) can be key in communicating with your customer base. The article suggests that continuous updates about the company’s new features or even disasters will create a background for your company and will let the customer know your company doesn’t have anything to hide.
Just like positive Word of Mouth, negative experiences can have an impact on your company’s image and customer base. Comments, good or bad, tend to be voiced on sites like Twitter and Facebook more often than not. A quick response and resolution to a customer’s issue makes them realize that you are not only listening to them, but you are taking the time to fix what went wrong and make them happy.
Overall, maintaining and growing your customer base may be difficult from time to time, but there are ways to help keep them coming back for more. By being helpful, Guest blogging, maintaining traditional PR, and having great customer service, you and your company can get on the right track to where you need to be to have a successful future.
To read the full article, click here!