Slow payers with small projects. Does this sound familiar with regard to your customer base? Many business owners gladly accept any kind of project that comes their way. Most find out that, as time goes by, their company is not growing into the type of business they wanted it to be in the first place. Rather than targeting a preferred clientele and crafting a marketing program to win the big accounts, it becomes easier to continue dealing with the slow payers and small projects.
If you are not happy with your customer base and the nature of the work you do, altering the types of accounts you serve along with their size and location can have a big impact on your bottom line. Analyze what it would really take to bring your business to the next level. Rather than letting your current customer base define you, use target marketing to determine who your customers should be.
Your first step is to identify your best and most profitable customers, whether you’re marketing to other businesses or to consumers. Make those customers the focus of your sales efforts. Business-to-business marketers should build a prospect list. The proper “contact sequence” for B2B sales is “call, mail, call.” First make the call, then follow up with a mailing piece, or even a personal visit. Identify your ideal prospects by category: medical centers, hotels, restaurants, etc.
Focus on the criteria that are important to you, such as the geography and size of the business. Then decide who your contact person should be.
If your business targets consumers, create a “target audience profile,” instead of a prospect list. If you own a home-decorating company, you may want to target more affluent homeowners. Your target audience profile might say, “Upper-class homeowners with incomes of $100,000 in the surrounding three ZIP codes.” Your profile will help you evaluate the costs you will spend on marketing and customer lead lists.
When you target your particular market, you will have a better chance of growing your business in the direction you want and into the kind of company that you initially envisioned.
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