You’re out on a first date. Maybe you found each other online, or maybe this meetup is the result of an enthusiastic matchmaker friend’s encouragement. Either way, you’re both here and you’re definitely glad you came. There’s good conversation about things you both value, the atmosphere is good, your date is well presented and, better yet, is giving you their undivided attention! It’s definitely a five star date. As it comes to an end, you find yourself thinking ‘I really hope I hear from them again!’.
The next day, you tell your friends about how well it went and that you’re looking forward to seeing where this goes. Not that you want to jump straight into a lifelong relationship with them, but hey there’s always the possibility. You wait to hear from them. Nothing. You kind of feel like you left the ball in their court, so apart from letting them know you had a great time, you don’t initiate a next step. Weeks turn into months and you let it go, just occasionally thinking ‘We could have had something great…’
This is how the story ends between your business and your customers when you – you attractive, attentive date you – don’t build or use your database well. Without regular, intelligent, and well thought out interactions, those enthusiastic, delighted ‘first dates’ with new customers become nice memories and nothing more. However, with regular, intelligent, and well thought out interactions, those enthusiastic, delighted ‘first dates’ with new customers become long-term, trustworthy, mutually beneficial relationships! And this, fellow business owner, is the key to building a sustainable business.
For some people, ‘building your database’ may seem a bit too clinical, or it may make it feel like yet another thing that really should be getting done, but isn’t. Let’s rephrase it then shall we? ‘Building your database’ is just business speak for maintaining and growing your connections and relationships. We’re a community dependent species – we’ve literally always relied on ‘databases’ a.k.a an extensive network of connections and relationships. The viability of your business hinges on your ability to connect with the right network and to build those relationships. It’s not optional; it’s essential.
Given today’s web savvy world, the most common way to connect with and build your network is online. There are multiple ways to do this, and this will differ depending on your market. Here at Web-Sta, we’ve combined our ongoing research into effective e-marketing approaches with knowledge of our client’s businesses, and predominantly their feedback, to focus in on two key emarketing strategies. These focus areas are: 1) Blogging and 2) Email marketing.
As in our story above, when you find or attract a new potential customer, it’s up to you to show them you’re interested. It’s up to you to offer new ways for them to say a bigger and bigger ‘Yes’ to working with you. Blogging is a great way to do this. Good blog pieces tell your customers more about your business, offer them snippets of genuinely helpful information, and can also include introductions to special offers and new products or services. Through your business’ blog posts, your customers begin to feel like they know your business and the relationship is strengthened.
If you need more motivation to invest in blogging, know this: Google really, really likes it when you blog. Know what’s going to really, really help your business succeed and grow? Being easily found on Google. We’ve gone more into depth about why that’s so in our post You need more than static content. The mysteries of SEO revealed.
Custom created, SEO optimised, original and engaging content is one of Web-Sta’s specialties. Yes, we write for you. Whether you have strong ideas you’d like optimised and fleshed out, or you’re completely new to the concept and you don’t know where to start, the Web-Sta team can meet you there and help get you wherever you want to go.
We have many clients already making use of this service including Mobile Towbar Fitting, Cane Toad Tough, Drama Works Academy, Deutsche Property, and Woongooroo Estate. Is your business next? Let us know!
- Email Campaigns
If you’ve been given an email address through any format – online sign-ups, business cards, hard copy workshop sign-ins, or as part of a customer’s billing information – you’ve been given a way to proactively connect with this person. Don’t waste it!
When it comes to storing these precious email addresses, Web-Sta use a program called ‘MailPoet’ and offer the option to have this feature fully integrated into your website. You can then track how an email campaign is going with specific statistics on who opened each email and who clicked on a link in the email. In this way you can determine who your ‘warm’ leads are, and which topics or offers are most attractive to your database. You could then make follow up contact that could lead to stronger wonderful connections and increases in sales.
Web-Sta provide detailed support in best using MailPoet in our Tech Hub. However, if you’d like something even simpler to start with, a basic template such as this one will put you on the right track.
Whichever online vehicles you choose to use, remember, it’s about the connection and growing the relationship. If a customer (or potential customer) is happy for you to regularly be contacting them, it means they like something they’ve seen or experienced about your business. Don’t let that interest slowly die – connect, build that relationship. After all, this could end up being the greatest business love story there ever was!
If you’re feeling a little lost about the best way to start growing your database, never fear, the Web-Sta team are here! ( 🙂 there’s always time and space for some corny).
When it comes to database building there are two vital pieces of information to gather, a first name and an email address. Here’s that link again to an Excel Spreadsheet template to get you started. Be sure to download a copy to your hard drive before you begin filling it out!
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