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What are ways to increase my SEO ranking in Google for my start-up photo booth business?

Is Facebook a good way to advertise my business? Is it worth paying to promote my page? What are... read more

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Evangelo Rosal Senior Test Consultant at Supa Slow Mo
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What are the most important elements in building customer loyalty?

I've learnt that retaining existing customers is just as (if not more) important than pursuing new... read more

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Phil Khor Founder at SavvySME
Jef LippiattCo-founder at Startup Chucktown
I believe that some of the most basic building blocks of customer loyalty are honesty, transparency and timely communication.It only takes one mishandled bad experience (notice the word mishandled) for a long time customer become a so long customer. One bad experience doesn't mean a good customer will leave, but how you handle that bad experience could drive them out the door. If user data was compromised send a communication, that explicitly lists what information, when it was accessed and how you resolved (or are resolving the situation). That is also a good time to offer a discount, special sale or complimentary identity theft protection.Customers want to know you are also listening to their feedback. You should communicate your appreciation for their feedback and let them know when customer feedback has been implemented (even if it wasn't theirs). That will drive home the point that you are listening to your customers.Actively involve your customers in what you are doing. Have a contest to let customers send in photos of them using your product or service then have your team (or your customers vote for the winner). Make your content easily shareable on social media and other outlets. You want your loyal customers to spread your message if they are passionate about it.I am only scratching the surface here. Think about what you appreciate for companies and services you use yourself. Why do you like those brands so much? Brainstorm on those thoughts and start integrating those ideas into your business as they make sense. The last thing to keep in mind is be willing to continuously adapt. Your customers and business will change over time, so should your approach to your customers.
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Customer acquisition and retention

5 Steps To Mystery Shopping Your Competition

Say what? “Mystery Shopping” might bring to mind images of Nancy Drew and her teen friends hitting... read more

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Lisa Ormenyessy Business Coach and Marketing Specialist at Straight Talk Group
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Customer acquisition and retention

Plug the Bucket

If you think that marketing activity should be solely focused on gaining new customers, you need to... read more

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Lisa Ormenyessy Business Coach and Marketing Specialist at Straight Talk Group
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Lisa OrmenyessyBusiness Coach and Marketing Specialist at Straight Talk Group
Yes, its really not brain surgery is it Yee :-)
Yee TrinhCo-founder at SavvySME
You get out what you put in after all.. Great article
Questions

How do you sell something that is free?

It has confounded me with a deeply researched value proposition that we are finding it difficult to... read more

Asked by:
Steve OsborneOwner at Smarthinking
Hi Michael, as Lisa says, Ripe Near Me appears to have somewhat stolen your thunder. Also, I can’t see anywhere in your model where revenue is going to come from. I have assumed there is an up-sell planned in the future. To answer your question, I took a look over the Fresh Near You site, searching for reasons your uptake is failing. I have drawn just one conclusion. It is this: despite your research and admirable endeavour, the value proposition is not powerful enough. Here’s why. The single most important reason a vendor will sign up is if you show or prove she will enjoy an increase in traffic to the farm gate. Not just any old increase mind, but ten fold. Anything less and natural human apathy kicks in. It’s not enough to promise a doubling of traffic. If she currently has one walk-in a week, two is not going to rock her boat. Ten just might.  So what you’ve got to do is get them over their (quite reasonable) ‘can’t be bothered/where’s the benefit?’ attitude. In other words – show me the money. The way to do that is to work really, really hard on developing your end-user base. You must create demand amongst your secondary target audience of food buyers, in order to on-sell the benefit to your primary target audience of vendors.  So the question now becomes: is there a big enough market to support the business model/service? And only more market research will answer that. But not the kind of research that has you asking people whether they would buy the service if provided. Because of course, people will say yes. They just won’t actually do it. You’ve got to find a way to test people on their behaviour, not their intention. The reason most people (and I’m grossly generalising here) will say they want the service but fail to act, is that there are already enough low-effort alternatives available. With the best will in the world, why would I trek miles out of my way to buy 2 x kilos of organic potatoes when I already shop at the local farmers market, or can buy them at the supermarket? You have to overcome the convenience factor.  And to do that, you must demonstrate to the end-user (again, as a ten-fold increase) the compelling benefit of making the journey. In your case, a tough ask. Clearly, there will be a die-hard core of anti-supermarket, support-the-farmer, dedicated organic produce buyers. But your competitor is wherever they are currently buying the same service from. It will take a gargantuan effort to change that behaviour. I ask again: is the audience big enough to support the model? In my view, for this model to work I think you need to forget the minority targets. They are buying the products anyway. Just not from you. Find a way to tap into the mass market. Your audience is the cashed-up, Masterchef obsessed, full-blown foodie. There are a lot more of them about than the organics-only crowd. And what you’re selling is: exclusivity.  The rationale is: superior taste.  Translated into marketing as: to put real love into your cooking, you must use authentic flavours. Authentic flavour comes from the freshest ingredients. And they are only available from authentic growers. In summary – unless there is sufficient demand from end-users, vendors will continue to ignore you. Create demand in the biggest sector you can find. Give end-users a compelling reason to use the service. When demand has risen to a sufficient level, convert your free subscription vendors to a paid version of the model. And there is the revenue stream. Now the question becomes: is it worth it? I hope you'll forgive my long-winded answer and find this (extremely condensed) marketing strategy of some use.
Julie alexis at web development New York
If you want to sell your product free then compare it with other products which is similar to your item and used by users. You can convince customer by telling about the difference and qualities of product. Hope it really works in business marketing. Most of the offshore web designers also use this trick to give some services in low cost to their clients.
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Customer acquisition and retention

12 quick cheap marketing tips for all businesses that work

Today’s market is tough.  Competition has never been more intense and it’s getting harder to earn... read more

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Allan Bennetto Founder at JMango
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Customer acquisition and retention

Who is your ideal client/customer?

Recently, I was chatting with a small retail business owner. We were discussing why customers... read more

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Neil SteggallPartner at Wardour Capital Partners
An important article Selina. It is surprising how often the basics are overlooked. I look forward to future articles, Cheers, Neil.
Selina ShaplandOwner at Selina Shapland
Thanks so much for your support Wendy. I appreciate hearing your thoughts.
Customer acquisition and retention

“Sorry?” where does it belong in business?

During the past few weeks the word “sorry” has been said to me on a few occasions, from... read more

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Thanks for your comments John and Wendy.
Wendy HuangFull Time Blogger and YouTuber at A Custom Blog in 4 Minutes
Hi Warren, I also do feel sometimes sorry feels like an empty reply to tick off the box of "politeness" vs. actually being sorry. I also never really thought much about it. Thanks for promoting more integrity in the business world :D!
Customer acquisition and retention

True colours, why my foul mouth makes my biz more money than anything else!

I have a confession to make. Actually if you know me you will laugh, because it is hardly a... read more

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Adam BeanOwner at Jark Projects
Lol John, glad you enjoyed it!
Adam BeanOwner at Jark Projects
Hey Trish, you are spot on, it has to be appropriate and authentic. Other wise it just won't work
Customer acquisition and retention

8 Steps to Make Customers Love Your Brand

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Streamlining the Customer Experience with Social Media and Mobile Tech

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Customer acquisition and retention

Create Customer Happiness with a Simple Act of Kindness

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Customer acquisition and retention

5 Ways to Keep Customers Knocking on Your Door For More

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Customer acquisition and retention

That Pesky Qualitative Side of Digital Customer Engagement

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Customer acquisition and retention

Netflix Goes Where No Customer Service Has Gone Before

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Customer acquisition and retention

How You Can Use Content To Increase The Quality Of Leads

At the heart of every marketing strategy lies a piece of purposeful and compelling content. From a...read more

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Customer acquisition and retention

How to Dominate Your Competition With 'Reciprocal' Customer Loyalty

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Customer acquisition and retention

Stop Losing Money and Focus on Customer Service (Infographic)

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Customer acquisition and retention

Is Gamification More Than Just a Buzzword?

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Customer acquisition and retention

How to Find More Customers Now

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