Are you in a business where it is a limited niche market? I’ve come across businesses whose market is so specific that their ideal customers are not easy to come by. In fact, in certain scenarios, doing business in a niche market does not make spending much on advertising feasible at all.
Businesses in these niche markets may need to grow their business with existing clientele. And such a strategy isn’t limited to these types of businesses. Many other businesses will do well to grow their business with the same client base.
Why sell to the same customer base?
Why should businesses spend their resources on existing clients when they can focus on acquiring new customers? Because it costs far more to gain a new customer than it is to keep an existing one. It is far easier to sell products and services to existing customers than to someone you don’t have a relationship with. They know who you are and what you can offer, and this makes it more likely for them to buy from you instead of your competition.
How do you sell more to the same customer?
The main strategy is to ensure that your relationship with your existing customers is a strong one. The idea is develop your current customer base into a pool of loyal clients—the kind that your competitors will be hard pressed to steal away from you.
Step 1: Address your customer service gaps
Look at and identify any customer-related service gaps within your operations. Are your customers satisfied? Are they happy with you?
If they aren’t happy, do you know the source of their unhappiness? Is there anything wrong with your product or service? Do they sufficiently address what your customers need?
Are your frontline and sales staff equipped with the rights skills and knowledge to address customer needs? Do they need further training?
Are you responding to customer inquiries and requests in a timely and prompt manner? Are you meeting customer expectations? Are you meeting expected deadlines? Do you deliver what you promise and when you promise them?
These are the questions you need to honestly answer. From there, you need to identify what you need to do to resolve these gaps.
Step 2: Get to know your customers better
Theodore Levitt famously said, “People don’t want to buy a quarter-inch drill. They want a quarter-inch hole!” Your customers want solutions to their problems.
Do you know why your customers buy from you? Do you know what problems you are addressing with the sale of your product or service?
Customers shift to the competition because either they perceive or your competitor convinced them that the competition provides something better or something that you cannot provide. To prevent this from happening: you need to understand not only why your customers need certain things, but also what they need it for.
Step 3: Be proactive—offer more
Increase your product offering. In doing so, you can increase opportunities for your customers to purchase from you.
Offer related products or create a system where your different product offerings can be used in a variety of ways. For example, Gilette introduces new products that complement its existing products. Apple designs gadgets that run proprietary software, encouraging consumers to use many of its products.
Offer your other products and services. When ordering in McDonald’s or any fast food, the person taking your order will always ask, “Do you want fries with that?” How many times have we said, “Yes!” to that offer? Customers need to be reminded of what you can do for them—and what products provide.
Offer your expertise and other things that provide value, such ideas, suggestions, and tips. These will unlikely cost you anything to give away but what your customers would find valuable.
Customers come to you because they think you’re an expert. Leverage on what you know by sharing what you know and what you have learned. Doing so helps build customer trust in you and your products as well.
Enhance the entire customer experience. How do you make it easier for your customers to reach you when they need you? Is it easy for your customers to do business with you? Use technology to build and maintain a relationship with your existing clients.
If you are interested to know more about what a business has to go through when facing exponential growth, you can download the first chapter of the book, ”$20K to $20 Million in 2 Years” absolutely free here. The chapter talks about the differences between a good and a great business and puts out questions that make you consider how you can turn your business from good to great.