What if you could push a button to get good customer leads? Do you want more customers? If the answer is yes, read on, you’re going to find this article is full of juicy tidbits to help you achieve your goal. You’ll begin to think about building and scaling your customer database, i.e., your list differently.
If the answer is no, then you can stop reading now.
It doesn’t matter what you’re selling; everybody needs more customers. If you don’t need more leads, then you’re probably going out of business. Leads are the life-blood of every business. You’ve probably heard that before, and it’s still true.
When you push that button, you get buckets of leads every day, so many leads that you’ll need to hire people to help you sort through them. But wait… won’t I go out of business like that?
Not the way I’m going to suggest you look at it. It would help if you structured your flow of leads to match your business needs.
Let’s make-believe that we’re having a party.
Good leads are like your invited guests to your party. You want the very best people who want what you’re serving. Imagine having a feast of all things Italian; you want to be sure you invite people who love Italian food as much as you. You don’t want those folks who are allergic to garlic, red sauce - aka gravy to Italians, or on a keto diet. Maybe not vegetarians; they might not have a good time with all the meatballs and sausage.
And let’s not forget the wine. Red wine flowing like a river. You’ll want people who enjoy the vino as much as you do. Good red wine and gravy - oh, so good.
Now we have a theme - an Italian food feast with wine. What do people who love Italian food desire most in the world? It could be many things, but they might like the recipes for these delicious dishes. You decide to get their attention with an invitation to your Italian feast with all the fantastic food they’ll experience and, a bonus, all the recipes to take home.
You ask them to respond with their email address to get on the waiting list for the party date. Like magic, people start to reply. Your Italian Party-list is beginning to grow.
Now you have a database of people who love Italian food to start your relationship with them. You begin by sharing with them like you were talking to your friends. What’s happening in your restaurant, introduce them to the staff - like it's their family. Create a bond that makes them feel good.
Where do you place this invitation, you ask? Social Media, Facebook, Instagram, or anywhere your people might hang out. Use your Facebook page to promote your business. Share all the fun events and people who have come through your place.
Once they start coming in, they have enjoyed excellent food, wine, and atmosphere. Now give them a reason to come back. How do you move them up your value ladder? You are only a restaurant for gosh’s sake.
Take a lesson from Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurants with their Wine Club. Their patrons pay a monthly fee for their exclusive wine through the membership. The membership offers different options for one or two bottles, discounts on merchandise, and premium wines. Wines can be picked up or delivered. However, most people come in to pick up their wines, and what do they do next? Come into the restaurant to eat.
To sweeten the offer, even more, they offer wine tastings for their members. The tastings are extremely popular (having enjoyed many of them myself), giving you a chance to do what… buy more wine.
Of course, they help you celebrate those birthdays too with discounts and sweet treats.
Kind of a sweet arrangement, right? They have captured their patrons with treats, good food, the feeling of being part of an exclusive club, and the warmth of belonging. When you’re piling all this on your customers, they don’t think twice about that monthly membership. Coopers Hawk has skillfully created ‘the pain of disconnect.’ The customers don’t want to walk away from all those perks. Even during a pandemic, their customers hung in there, coming by to pick up their wine. When they could reopen, their customers were back too. I have been eating and drinking good wine there for years now.
They have taken being a restaurant to new heights. Imagine what else you could do for your customers to make them loyal to only you. People are creating memories there. That’s the kind of loyalty you want. Restaurants aren’t known for this kind of continuity programs that bring in money each month, rain or shine.
Yes, there are loyalty programs with random discounts and a free cookie on your birthday, aka Panera Bread, but it’s free. How could they generate cash every month through a membership?
Let’s create some leads. What do you offer that is better than your competition? How could we highlight your service, making it sparkle and shine? It starts with something your audience desires. This is a sticking point for many people. They don’t know what they are sitting on. It is common not to know your sweet spot and leverage it as if it was a tasting.
Have you ever seen a person handing out samples of food at a food court? One little taste to lure you in for a complete meal. Aren’t we doing the same? Here you are handing out samples of what they desire most—knowing that some will want more.
Think about what people desire most from you? What is a simple way to give them a taste of what you offer? That’s all there is to it. If you don’t get it right the first time, there're more chances, more tries on your horizon. While we’d like to hit a home run the first time at bat, there’s nothing wrong with getting on base. Once they’re in your database, you start building a relationship making them feel part of the family. You can move along to score once they’re comfortable with you. win: win.
Building and scaling your list is a foundational ingredient of every business. The value of your business is in your customers. How much money do your customers generate? And now, how much money can you generate from those customers - on demand?
If you need help developing the strategy to build your list, reach out to me at Linda@shinyobjectmarketing.com. Once you get leads flowing in, you'll soon be celebrating.
Linda James Bennett; day 45 of 365 writing an article every day and making you a shiny object in the world.