Ever since coming into this industry back in May 2005, I’ve found a large majority of small business owners are operating without a real marketing strategy. It becomes one of the main reasons they struggle to reach their growth goals.
Now… I get it, no one gets up with an intentional plan to fly by the seat of their pants.
However, that is what so often happens when there is no strategic plan on how the business objectives will be accomplished in the midst of the everyday occurrences we all face.
That’s why I’m writing this brief post to share 5 marketing strategies proven to double sales each of them are acted upon.
Seriously… the first strategy alone is responsible for boosting sales and revenue in one failing businesses by more than 300% in just 60 days.
I’ve decided to do this both as a video and regular text and images. Grab whichever one works best for you. (In reality… I’ll add a few additional nuggets inside the video.)
# 1: ADDRESS A DESPERATE PROBLEM
The number one rule of effective marketing and advertising is… we MUST capture the attention of our intended audience. If I have the world’s best treadmill, but am unable to capture and hold the attention of my ideal customer long enough to get my message across, nothing else matters.
The image you see to your right pictures an explosion happening at someone’s home.
You and I both know… if there was an explosion in the place where we eat our meals and sleep at night… this kind of problem would demand our immediate attention. In the short-term, we’d spend money for things like meals, a hotel to sleep, and other necessary items.
My point is… people spend money to solve problems.
The better we get at identifying the primary and secondary problems our ideal customer is challenged by and desperately want eliminated… the easier we’ll find it to grab and hold their attention.
What’s More Important Than the Problem?
Even after we pinpoint the core problem we need to go one step further. The real question becomes, ‘WHY do they want that problem eliminated?’ How will their life be different once the problem is gone (or at least minimized)?
The reason identifying the why is so critical is… the emotional buttons that move people to make buying decisions are locked up inside of their why.
It’s like one of my clients who reached out to me because he wants to grow his business. Sure, it’s good to know that he want to double sales in 12 months. But what’s more important is understanding why doubling sales is important right now. In his case, he has a wife, a son, and a daughter on the way. The business growth is connected to his desire (AND NEED) to provide for his growing family. If he doesn’t achieve his growth goals, it could mean his family will struggle and he’ll feel like he’s failed in his role as a provider….
Now that I know his why… I’m in a position to better serve what my client really wants.
On one hand, he wants to see his business growth. But what he really wants is to provide for his family in a way that satisfies his sense of what it means to succeed as a husband and a father. Tapping into that emotion is what really grabs his attention.
Far too often, I see small business owners who don’t understand the need to tap into the why of their ideal customer. Making matters worse… they often don’t know how to get those answers.
Without that level of insight… a lot of promotion efforts fail because what really matters to the customer is not being addressed.
At this stage of a sales process, it’s critical to pinpoint the problem and the buyer’s why. Agitate the problem to help them see the short and long-term consequences of not taking action.
Once our ideal customer knows we can relate to their problem… we can transition to giving them a sense of hope.
# 2: MAKE A UNIQUE PROMISE
If you have a product or service that solves your ideal customer’s problem, how does your solution solve their problem in a unique way? I’ve spoken to life coaches, CPAs, massage therapists and other experts who delivered superior solutions. What hurt their marketing efforts was… not knowing how to effectively communicate the value of what they were delivering.
The two most important questions we need to answer if we want to boost sales is:
- “Why should your ideal customer do business with YOUR COMPANY instead of any other option in the marketplace (including their option to do nothing at all)?
- Also, “Why should your ideal customer buy YOUR PRODUCT OR SERVICE instead of any other option available to them?
That’s the starting point. If you want to really strengthen your positioning, a third question to consider is, “Is there an ONLY factor you can deliver on?” An only factor is a one-of-a-kind attribute that is seen as desirable by the ideal customer… like a fingerprint.
If a jeweler could legitimately position themselves as the only place where 25 karat gold is sold, can you imagine how easy it would be to see that product to people who were in the market for that kind of product?
If they could make that type of promise, one of their biggest challenges would be that of credibility. A good number of consumers a guided by a healthy level of skepticism.
This is the reason why the next step is so critical.
# 3: PROVIDE SOCIAL PROOF
It’s common knowledge that we live in a reputation economy. Consumers want to see reviews before they make buying decisions. The numbers prove it:
- 97% of consumers look at online reviews for local businesses in 2017. (Bright Local)
- More than 88% of online shoppers incorporate reviews into their purchase decision. (Vendasta)
- 49% of consumers need at least a 4-star rating before they choose to use a business (Bright Local).
If your ideal customers are going to respond to your unique promise, they have to believe what you’re saying. This is where social proof is critical. Consumers are quicker to believe the reviews and testimonials coming from buyers like them who have nothing to gain from the transaction.
Small business owners of all kinds need to be aware of what their previous and existing customers are saying about them. Even more… they should be asking their customers to leave feedback on a regular basis. What better way to deliver an exceptional customer experience than to survey customers about their experience.
When it comes to boosting conversion, reviews and testimonials should be placed prominently on landing pages and sales pages. People who run brick and mortar locations should have printed copies of their 4 and 5 stars reviews in places where buyers can see them.
For those who’ve never asked customers to leave a review, here’s the 4W Formula:
- Who are you?
- Where are you from?
- Why did you do business with this company / buy this product?
- Why would you recommend them to friends and/or family members?
Prospects who pay attention to reviews and testimonials are probably getting close to purchasing. This leads us to our next key for doubling conversion.
# 4: CREATE JAW DROPPING OFFERS
It wasn’t that long ago that I learned about creating compelling offers. This goes far beyond lowering the price during a sale. An offer has several elements included:
- Reason Why
- (There’s actually one more… we’ll reveal it in just a moment.)
To lower the price of the product or service alone is not an offer. That’s a product sale, or product promotion.
A jaw-dropping offer is one that delivers an exceptional value to your ideal customer in such a way that they find it almost impossible to say no. (Of course, not everyone has the ability to buy everything that’s offered.) However, if they had the means… the conversion rate of those who buy would always be higher because of the perceived value of what’s being offered. (I give additional details inside the video – be sure to watch when you can set aside 20 minutes.
# 5: GIVE THEM A REASON TO TAKE ACTION NOW!
This is about the old-school principle of scarcity. I bring this up because it flat-out works.
One of the examples I’m most familiar with is that of coupons. I can remember my mom using coupons since I was a kid back in the 80’s. Most coupons I know of have expiration dates.
Then we have those infomercials that present everything from makeup, copper cookware, exercise equipment, real estate investing coaching programs, to the latest and greatest air-fryer. Most people who’ve lived a while are familiar with the pitch that goes something like,
“If you order in the next 10 minutes, you’ll get not just one, but two for the same price!”
While the approach can be one of hype and exaggeration, there are ways to use scarcity without feeling like you’re a used car salesman trying to beat some granny out of her social security check every month.
I would with my clients to create “legitimate scarcity”.
You see… if your service requires a significant investment of your personal time and attention, there’s only so much of you to go around. It’s easy to create legitimate scarcity around certain offers. A solo life coach or real estate agent is limited in the number of people they can service with 5-star service. When they attempt to service too many people at one time, the service level will take a nose-dive.
A proven way to offer scarcity is to use the date and quantity combination.
Example of Scarcity in Marketing:
We’re selling 12 seats to our Breakthrough Coaching Masterclass for Authors, normally sold for $797. The first 12 action takers can get access for only $497. The coupon code expires automatically after 12 action takers or, on Sunday night February 4, 2018 at 11:59 pm EST. While we love investing in our client’s success, we have to limit this to 12 seats in order to maintain a high service level, and to make sure everyone starts at the very beginning of the masterclass which begins the following Tuesday, February 6, 2018.
Once the enrollment closes, many people place an optin on the sales page to build a waiting list for the next time the Masterclass will be offered.
Statistics on Scarcity Marketing
- An Experian report found that promotional or emails conveying a sense of urgency had at least 14% higher click-to-open rates, 59% higher transaction-to-click rates, and twice as high transaction rates compared to their average marketing emails.
- Experian’s report also noted that by using urgency in their email subject lines, their transaction rates on sales increased 16%. For them, and many others, it’s most effective to mention the discount as well as the time limit in email subject lines.
- When Noah Kagan created his free email course on marketing, he initially allowed only a seven day enrollment period. Eventually, he created a wait list for second round of enrollment.
- Using this scarcity tactic, he tripled his email subscribers (from 12,000 to 50,000) for his OK Dork marketing blog.
Summary of the 5 steps needed to capitalize on what’s covered in this blog post:
- Identify the desperate problem your ideal customer is facing
- Find a way to make a unique promise
- Provide social proof to support the promise you’re making
- Make a jaw-dropping offer
- Give them a reason to TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW!
SO… what action do you need to take? Do you know? A suggestion… prioritize building your email list. Getting to know your audience is critical to any success when marketing online or offline. I’m recommending an app called ConvertBar because it’s made especially to help boost conversion at every stage of the sales process; Awareness, Consideration, and Decision. Click the link at the end of this blog post for details. For a limited time, you can make a single investment and own it before it requires a monthly recurring payment.