This is part two of a three-part series on how to profitably translate advice from old-school marketing guru Dan Kennedy to a new online environment.
Last week we looked at the first 5 steps in Dan Kennedy’s Ultimate Marketing Plan, and how you can translate those old-school ideas into an online marketing strategy.
This week we’ve got five more for you.
6. Get Free Advertising
In the book, Kennedy focuses on methods for getting free advertising through traditional media. However, times have changed. These days, it’s social media that can best butter your bread.
If you’re comfortable navigating online, you have a clear advantage here. Other than the expense of time, the majority of social media tools are entirely free. There have never been more easy to implement and widely available instruments to help you smartly promote your business.
If you’re a regular reader of Copyblogger, you already know this goes hand-in-hand with the content marketing gospel flowing from the pulpit, day in and day out.
If you deliver value on a consistent basis, eventually others will help you with the hard work of promotion. They’ll spread your influence and draw prospects to your business like metal to a magnet.
7. Become Hot!
Trends are great; fads are not.
The last thing you want is to be here today and gone tomorrow. Getting people engaged so they are not only talking about whom you are but also what you’re doing is a tremendous way to increase business.
Once in your sphere, you can groom your one-time prospects into evergreen customers.
Kennedy cites seven ways to get people talking:
- Gain prestigious recognition. Get name checked by someone in the know. Perhaps Chris Brogan or Darren Rowse mentions you, thus instantly putting you on the radar of a wider audience. Guest posting is a great shortcut to accomplish the same thing.
- Offer new products. Offer something new or put a unique spin on something old. Offer something decidedly different or measurably better than your competitors, and people will be talking.
- Offer new services. Find a unique way to service your clientele, or create an unbeatable guarantee and people will naturally want to share it with their friends.
- Tie into trends and news events. Always have an open ear for what people are discussing these days. This doesn’t mean you need to jump on a Tiger Woods Infidelity Special!, but you can find ways to make the headlines relevant to your business.
- Tie your business to seasons and holidays. From Groundhog Day to Christmas, there’s always a jubilee to jump on. Be creative. Why wait for a “Harvest Sale,” when you could promote your business during “Talk Like a Pirate Day?” The possibilities here are endless.
- Tie your business to movies and entertainment events. We love to talk about the latest movies we’ve seen or television we’ve watched. Even if we pretend not to, most of us glance at the tabloids while paying for our groceries. Make your business a part of the water cooler conversation.
- Piggyback off the fads of others. Fads are here today and gone tomorrow. Though you wouldn’t want to build your business on a passing whim, it can be great to ride the waves while they’re good.
8. Poor Boy Marketing
It’s easy to fritter mountains of money on poorly placed advertising, but moving your enterprise online has made it far easier to avoid this tragic mistake.
See #6 – Get Free Advertising. Get online and get going. Don’t spend tons of money on Adwords or banner ads when you’re getting started. Instead, spend tons of time making connections and getting your message heard.
9. Maximizing total customer value
The life of a customer over time is, by far, one of the biggest assets your business can have. The cost to gain a new customer is substantially higher than that to keep an old one happy. Yet a common mistake many business owners make is giving too much attention to getting new clients, rather than focusing on their existing loyal customers.
Losing some customers is unavoidable, but there are many things you can do to avoid the fallout.
According to Kennedy, businesses lose customers because:
- 1% die. Until we figure out how to cyborg ourselves, there’s not much we can do about this one.
- 3% move. Offline, this is due to geography; online, it’s due to shifting interests. You must do all you can to hold the attention of your audience. Some loss is acceptable over time, but stay remarkable and you will minimize the losses.
- 5% switch to something else due to a friend’s recommendation. There is no more valuable referral than that from a friend. Yet, if your customer is truly happy with your product or services, the odds of them leaving are slim.
- 9% switch to a better product or service. The best way to fight this is to make sure your products, services, and offers are simply the best around.
- 14% leave for general dissatisfaction. Again, it’s a good idea to trim the tribe, as you’re never going to please everyone. However, if a customer leaves, make sure you did everything within reason to keep them.
All together, those five reasons only add up to 32%. A staggering 68% of customer loss is due to indifference.
Appreciate your customers, give them value at every opportunity, and allow the relationship to grow over time.
10. Fueling Word-of-Mouth
Online, we call this going viral. The best referrals come from other happy customers. Your job as a business owner is to fuel that praise.
Kennedy suggests using the “EAR” formula:
- E- Earn your referrals. Do what you do so well that others can’t resist talking about you. Publish content that makes others eager to share.
- A- Ask. It might make you uncomfortable, but you shouldn’t be shy about asking for referrals if you are doing a job that warrants praise. Give your customers the tools they need, clearly communicate your desires, and watch your business grow.
- R- Recognize and Reward. Acknowledge your customers when they give you the gift of a referral and never fail to reward them for their efforts. Reciprocity goes a long way, both online and off.
That’s it for this week. The final four elements of Kennedy’s Ultimate Marketing Plan applied online will be in next week’s final installment of the series.