Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Freebies for your customers

     Free daily tips, information, advice and ideas
     to help you better manage your small business

     Showing you care about your customers is easy. It's a matter of staying on top of customers' expectations and interests.

     Example: Peg runs a specialized collectibles business. Her only store is her website. She sells vintage board games, computer games, video games, and related items. Peg promotes heavily on social media--Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. In prior years, she charged for shipping. Today, just about everything ordered is shipped for free. In addition, Peg encloses a small free gift in every package that goes out. Her customers are a specialized lot, they are very loyal, and they refer others to her. 

     Example: Ana runs a restaurant. She promotes on Facebook, entering her specials every day. She gets lots of "likes" and a few comments that are negative. Ana responds to every "like" that comes in, and she also responds to every negative comment--putting a positive spin on her reply and inviting the person to get a free dessert when visiting.  

     Example: Julie is a massage therapist. To promote her services, Julie gives free demonstrations and talks at senior centers, group meetings, and corporate venues. These activities bring additional clients to Julie's place--many of whom have never before had a real massage. New clients always receive a gift certificate that they can use themselves or pass on to others.

     Example: Ken runs an auto repair shop. Customers needing major repairs always get more. Ken checks wiper blades, tire pressure, and several additional minor items--listing all this on the final bill, but entering "Our gift to you" instead of a charge. This builds goodwill.

     Example: Pepe runs a bakery. Every customer is invited to take a free cookie from the sample table he maintains in front of his display cases. Outgoing orders are bagged with a free cookie also. And he always asks the recipient for feedback on the freebie. It's Pepe's way of testing new products--sort of like a focus group. 

     Freebies can take many forms--whether you provide goods or services. Or whether you sell on the net or in a shop. Use your creativity.

     Freebies create goodwill among your present customers and clients. And that goodwill gets passed around, resulting in more referrals for you.    


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