For many small business owners their flow of leads is up and down. One week there’s lots of leads and they are flat out keeping up. The next week there are not many leads and things are quiet. So there ends up being an inconsistency of work flow happening in the business. Or worse still they just sit around waiting for the phone to ring.
Consistent workflow comes from consistent sales. Consistent sales comes from consistent marketing.
Here’s four steps that you can take to ensure that you’ll get a consistent flow of leads happening in your business.
1) Be clear on who you are targeting
The first one is to be really clear on who you are targeting. Who is your target market? Get really specific. If you try to be everything to everyone then you’ll end up being nothing to no one.
Not all customers are created equal so target the ones you love to deal with and you would like more of. In the ideal world you would market individually to each customer. This is a bit impractical so come up with a profile (or avatar) of your ideal customer and build your marketing around this.
To get started focus on one key type of customer. To identify where to start, think about your top and best customers. Create a profile based on what they have in common. Ask questions like:
- What’s important to them?
- What product or services are they often buying?
- What are their fears, their wants, their hopes, their desires?
Take the time to really understand who you are targeting. By focusing one, it makes marketing so much easier. When you are creating any marketing you can focus as if you are writing to that one person. That way you’ll start to attract others like them.
2) Identify where you can find your target customer
Next is get clear on where can you find your ideal customer in high concentrations. Where are they? Where do they hang out? For example, you may find that your ideal customer lives or works in a certain suburb or area. What publications are they reading? What social media platforms are they on? What websites are they visiting? Get into the daily life of your customer and work out where they are.
Next identify how are they making decisions. Where are they going to research your product or service.
- Are they going online?
- Do they do a Google search?
- Are they looking on social media?
- Do they seek advice from their friends?
- Are they talking to their advisors?
- What other companies are they dealing with at the same time they are purchasing your product or service?
Wherever they are, that is where you want to target your marketing efforts. This way you can be really targeted at getting in front of your ideal customer in places where they are looking.
3) Work on one marketing strategy at a time
Next, focus on one strategy at a time. Choose a marketing strategy where your target market is looking, and work on it until you get it right. And by right, that it is producing a consistent flow of leads. Here are some examples…
- If you know your customers are Googling your type of industry, then go to work and get a Google strategy working. This could be a pay per click strategy or an SEO strategy. Whatever you choose, choose one and work until it is producing leads for you.
- If they are talking to their friends, see how you can put a referral strategy in place.
- If your potential customers are talking to other businesses, see how you can put some referral partners in place.
Work out where your customers are and get that strategy to the point where it is producing leads. This could take a few months to get right, but by getting it right, you’ll have a consistent flow of leads.
4) Add new marketing strategies to build a consistent flow of leads
The final step is to add additional marketing strategies one at a time. Once you have got one working and it is producing leads, then you can add your second. And then your third. Most small businesses (depending on their size) just need two or three strategies working really well. If you are a bit larger then you might need a couple more. By having a number working at the same time, means your business won’t stop if one of your lead sources starts to slow down a bit. You are not just relying on one strategy.
So just to recap, to get a consistent flow of leads in your business:
- Get clear on your target market.
- Identify where you can find your ideal customer in high concentrations.
- Work on one marketing strategy so that is producing a consistent flow of leads.
- Add additional marketing strategies over time to build a more robust flow of leads into your business.
By doing this, you’ll get a consistent flow of leads in your business and start to iron out all those ups and downs when it comes to running your business.