How to get more clients with social media

How to get more clients with social media

Stop selling, get social and gain more clients

Do you want to know how to get more clients with social media? If so, I want to share a little tip with you if you use social media for business, and I also think it can be applied if you use social media for personal use. It is quite a simple tip really. Here it is in all its simplicity:

Put the social back into social media

So often I meet clients who complain that they are not getting the results they want from their social media efforts but when I review their sites, all I see is ‘me, me, me’. They are constantly trying to sell to people.

As I always tell people, when posting on social media sites such as Facebook, it is important to be consistent and post regularly but not to constantly try to sell.

The aim is to interact with others, or be social, (the tip is in the name ‘social media’) on these sites to in order to build a relationship with them so that people/potential clients come to like and trust you. They are then more likely to want to listen to your message in the future and interact with you and will remember you when they need the product or service you offer.

You wouldn’t go to a dinner party and just constantly talk about yourself and how wonderful you are, or if you did I suspect you wouldn’t be invited back again. So why behave in this way on social media.

Post on social media sites as though you were talking to someone in person. Give them hints and tips for solving problems related to your business offering and provide interesting information.

Let people see the real you so let your personality shine through. Join in groups where your target market hang out and join in conversations. Give some free advice. This can then be interspersed with a sales message on odd occasions rather than turning people off by selling to them constantly.

I had a message from a wonderful lady I have been working with recently. She had just been posting sales messages and getting nothing back. She changed tactic just a week ago and has already seen her likes and followers grow daily.  Even better, she has gained 3 new clients. In her words “Amazeballs!”.

You see, it works!

And in your personal life, don’t just talk about yourself. Take an interest in others. Ask how they are, what they are doing and help them if you can. No one likes to spend time with someone who is only interested in themselves.

So if you want to get more clients, start being more social on social media and see how your success increases.

How The Collapse Of Thomas Cook Affects Your Business

How The Collapse Of Thomas Cook Affects Your Business

This week has seen the very sad news of Thomas Cook going into administration.

And let me tell you if a long-standing firm of 178 years in business can collapse, then we should all sit up and take notice.

Why?

Because if it can happen to a household name paying directors huge sums of money, it can happen to ‘amateurs’ like you and me.

In my humble opinion, there are two key reasons for the collapse of Thomas Cook.  And they can both easily happen to you.

They didn’t manage the money

The first and most easily identifiable reason is they simply didn’t manage the money.  End of!  A business is only successful if it is profitable, and Thomas Cook wasn’t.

Yes, that is a hugely simplistic statement to make but I see all too many small businesses go under for the same reason.

They forget to review their outgoings and make changes or cuts where needed such as Thomas Cook keeping over 500 high street outlets when other travel companies moved solely online.  They make investments that haven’t been researched thoroughly enough and which don’t give a return on investment.  Thomas Cook merged with a company that had only ever once made a profit itself.

This causes the business to sink deeper and deeper into debt and take riskier gambles to try and recoup their losses.  It’s a road to disaster.

Cashflow isn’t planned such as with Thomas Cook taking booking payments in the first part of the year but then having huge costs going out in the latter part of the year when income was low.

And owners keep paying themselves even when the business is in financial trouble.  Thomas Cook continued to pay dividends right up to last November even though they had been in serious trouble for some time.  If the profits aren’t there, stop paying yourself until they are!

They didn’t keep up with the changing needs of customers

The holiday choices of Thomas Cook customers have changed, but they didn’t identify this and react quickly enough.

As already mentioned, Thomas Cook kept 500 outlets on the high street with high rental and staffing costs where most people started to book online.
The holiday choices of their customers changed.  Rather than the traditional beach holiday, customers started to book more city breaks.  Thomas Cook failed to react to this and other travel agents picked up the city break business.

And of course, the B-word had an impact.  Brexit!  With the uncertainty of the British population not knowing what was going to happen economically, many decided to stay put in the UK to take their holiday.  Thomas Cook didn’t take advantage of that.

Harsh lessons here and it is terribly sad that such a long-standing company is no more.

But whatever the size of your company, the basics are the same for all.

  1. Constantly track the finances.  The essentials are to track money coming in and money going out.  You need to look at ways to make more money and save more money if things are tight.  Don’t stick your head in the sand.
  2. Keep up to date with the changing needs of your customers.  Trends come and go.  Changes happen to your industry.  Economic pressures change consumer spending.  You need to keep on top of this.

P.S.  If you want help to track your finances and to keep up with the changing needs of customers, come join the members club.  Don’t get left behind.

Little things that make a big difference

Little things that make a big difference

As you may already realise by now, I am a stickler for customer service.

And I believe it’s the little things that make the big differences.

As Maya Angelou famously quoted:

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Think about how you leave people feeling in your business.  Are there any small changes that could make a big difference in how you make prospects and clients feel?

Customer service isn’t rocket science.  It really is the little things such as a smile, a handwritten note, or a follow up to see how they are.

We tend to spend time focusing on wooing our prospects to turn them into clients and a big failing is stopping this once they have purchased.  These people can become our best marketers if we continue to show we care about them.

Send a thank you card, email to see if they are happy with their purchase or send a client only special offer for a future purchase.

I’ve got a touchpoint checklist with some ideas to get you started thinking about how you can wow your prospects and clients.  You can download it here for free.

And here are a few examples that I have come across just recently.

Good customer service

Good customer service

Received a package on a low-cost item where they had included a small bag of sweets – nice touch.

Had an online chat to discuss a problem.  After the chat, I received a lovely email with the direct contact details for the person I had been chatting to so I could go to them directly if any further problems (no having to repeat the problem again which is so frustrating).

An order was messed up and after trying to find out what happened, the customer services chap gave me false information to try and fob me off (very bad customer service).  I emailed a complaint and with no further fuss I had the product delivered along with a full refund to apologise (they have now kept me as a customer)

After a long tiring drive to stay at a hotel, upon arrival the lady at the desk said she had heard there were long delays on the motorway.  She said she thought we would be tired so had gone to our room to draw the curtains and turn on the lamps so we could have a lie-down and a rest.  A small but hugely appreciated touch.

Bad customer service

Poor customer service

I paid next day delivery for an item which didn’t arrive.  I contacted the company to find out what had happened.  There was no apology but just a barrage of excuses that drivers get tired and sometimes deliver to the wrong address, can’t find properties in rural locations etc.  Yes, they said they would investigate where the item was but no refund on delivery cost and didn’t seem to care.  They have lost a long-standing customer.

At the same hotel mentioned above, upon coming downstairs in the morning, my husband and I both said good morning to the new lady on the desk, but she couldn’t be bothered to lift her head and smile. She only just muttered ‘morning’ whilst continuing to look at her mobile! This made us feel rather unwelcome.

I emailed to book an appointment with a health and beauty therapist, gave her the dates I was available, and she simply said: “no, can’t do those” in her reply.  No other dates suggested, no saying ‘unfortunately I’m booked up’ or ‘I’m so sorry I can’t fit you in’.  The message was so short and snappy I won’t be going to her again.

I purchased a product on an ongoing subscription.  It was something new and I was a little nervous about trying it as the retailer knew.  After my first purchase, the only time I heard from the retailer was to let me know my next month’s payment was due.  There was nothing wrong with the product, but I didn’t feel valued as a customer, or that they cared if I was getting on with the product of not, but that they were only interested in getting money out of me.  Their direct competitor has been in contact more than them and so I am now in the process of switching.

Does any of this resonate with you either as a seller or a buyer?

If you receive either good or bad customer service, take note of it.  If you receive bad customer service, are you guilty of this also?  Be honest with yourself.  If you receive good customer service, do you do this with your business or could you incorporate it in some way?

I’d love to hear any stories of your own that you may have so let me know in the comments below.

How To Know If You Have A Business Or A Hobby

How To Know If You Have A Business Or A Hobby

Are you running a business or hobby?

Are you showing up in your business the way you would show up for a ‘real’ job working for someone else?

What I mean is… are you completing your money-making and key tasks daily? Even when you’re tired and don’t feel like it.

When we work for someone else, we always show up.  We drag ourselves to work even when we don’t feel like it.  We might be feeling de-motivated or stayed out too late the night before, but we still show up.

But so many times we give ourselves excuses in our businesses and the work that matters never actually gets done.

  • “I’m tired today. I’ll do it tomorrow.”
  • “The sun is shining.  I’m off to the beach for the day.”
  • “There’s a sale on in my favourite shop.  I think I’ll skip work and go to that.”

Yes, we work for ourselves to give ourselves the flexibility that a 9 – 5 job doesn’t allow.  Yes, there are times when you should take a day out and do some self-care or indulge yourself.

But, if you truly want a successful business for the long term, you must stop the half-hearted excuses and step up to create that future you so badly want.

Think of yourself as an employee of your business.  Would your boss allow you the number of excuses you are coming up with on a regular basis such as showing up late, leaving early or procrastinating over key activities?

If you are not working to the same conditions that you would for someone else in your business, you are giving excuses!

This is the difference between having a business or a hobby.

I see a lot of people with hobbies. And it’s because they aren’t focused on doing the work that matters.

Write yourself a contract of employment.  Set out your responsibilities and set your working hours.  Factor in how many days off you will have.  Set yourself targets and what reward you will have for achieving these.

It’s your business on your terms.  But treat it as a business and not a hobby if you truly want a different life than you have now.

How confident are you in your pricing structure?

How confident are you in your pricing structure?

I’m asking this question, purely from the fact that if you’re not fully confident in your pricing structure and what you’re charging, this will come through when you are talking to potential clients.

And this is whether you feel that your prices are too high, or whether you actually feel they’re too low.

Two examples of this.

Example one – no confidence in pricing structure

Just this week. I found a potential business coach for me, booked a call and the conversation was going quite well.  But then it ultimately came down to pricing.

I suspect that she had looked at my website and my online profile and put me in a category of earning six or seven figures, which, quite frankly I don’t.  And so she quoted me $25,000, per month.

Yeah, you read that right, $25,000.

After nearly falling off my chair and reaching for gin and tonic to take a good hard slug I informed her that this was completely and utterly out of my price bracket. She instantly discounted. And so, I thought I’ll see how far I can push her.

Within, literally one minute, two minutes maximum, she had bought that price down to $500 per month.

Now, what did I think? “Wow, this is fantastic. I can now afford her I’m going to sign up with her.”

No!  In fact, the complete opposite.

I instantly thought if she is discounting by $24,500 in less than two minutes, she’s a fraud. She’s making this up. She’s not confident in her pricing. She has no idea what she’s doing. And she’s certainly not someone that I want to work with.

Example 2 – 100% confidence

On the other hand, many moons ago when I was moving from employment to self-employment, I called a business coach who I really wanted to work with. And yet, yet again, she was out of my price range. I asked her what she could do for a lower finger, and she would not budge.

She knew her worth, she completely stuck by her pricing, she said to me, this is what it is. if you want to work with me. That’s what you’ve got to pay. She wasn’t quite that blunt, but that was the message that crystal clearly came across. What did I do? I found the money, and I went with her.

Do you see the difference? If people really believe in you, they will find the money and they will work with you if you’ve got something they really want. But you must believe in yourself. Instantly going into discount mode screams desperation, it screams you don’t believe in yourself; it screams you don’t really know what you’re doing.

Set your prices, believe in them. And as I mentioned, if your pricing is too low it’s going to come across because you’ll falter when talking, you’ll feel a bit icky inside.  You’ll think, bloody hell, I’m going to be doing all this work and I’m not really going to be charging my worth. It’s not a good feeling and it will come across in your voice.

Go sort your pricing structure out. Be 100% confident that you’re earning what you’re worth, but you’re also not pulling the wool over people’s eyes and just simply trying to rip them off.

Any thoughts? Let me know below.