ATTRACT MORE BUSINESS
Big businesses often allocate large chunks of money to their marketing budgets, but for smaller players, word of mouth can be one of the most powerful tools you have to attract new clients. Better still, it’s free. So, how do you leverage your current, loyal clients to promote your business to their network of family, friends and colleagues?
Be proactive, not passive
If you’re just waiting for your clients or friends or anyone in your sphere of influence to go talk to people on your behalf, then you’re waiting for them to take action, and that’s not a good marketing strategy. Casually asking clients to tell any friends who need a trainer that you’d be happy to help, then sitting by the phone hoping for the best, is unlikely to pay off. Instead, you need to be strategic.
You need to give your clients the ability to easily refer and make that a fun thing for them, not a hassle. As an example of a proactive approach, you could tell clients you’re searching for people just like them, looking to improve their health and fitness, then ask them to pop down the names and emails of people they know who may be interested, showing them the message you intend to send to their contacts.
“As fiercely independent business owners, we forget that asking people for help is one of the most powerful things we can do.”
Hold ‘bring a buddy’ sessions
Inviting your clients to bring a friend along to a session to train for free is a great idea, but for it to actually translate to solid client leads (and not just a bunch of one-off freebie seekers), it has to be done properly. For starters, limit your ‘bring a buddy’ promo to a specific timeframe. If it’s just anytime, there’s no urgency or motivation for people to do it, whereas if it’s happening on certain dates and you ask clients to nominate which session their friend is coming to, there’s a much clearer call to action. Capturing their contact details in advance or at the start of the session means you can follow up with them afterwards, and nurture the relationship from there.
Be strategic with social media
Social media can be an incredibly useful tool for tapping into the networks of current clients for potential leads. One simple strategy is to post useful content, then ask clients to tag a friend who may benefit. Another idea is to post a video or photo from a training session, tagging clients and asking them what they thought of the session. “Not only will people in their social media network seen that they’ve been tagged in the post, but hopefully they will respond to your post, which makes you a trusted source of information [in their friends’ eyes],” explains Isaac. He also recommends being proactive and reaching out to people in your clients’ network who’ve liked or engaged with your post.
“You can say ‘Hey there xx [the person’s name], I saw that you liked this post, I’m really passionate about helping people with their health and fitness – what’s your top health and fitness goal right now? Or ‘what are the biggest challenges you’re facing with your health and fitness right now?”. The key point here isn’t that you’re trying to get a sale, but that you’re aiming to find out whether or not you can help the person.
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