Julie Guest Direct Response Copywriter, Marketing Strategist, Best Selling Author

building a list

Christmas Craziness and 8 Marketing Secrets to Attracting a Never Ending Supply of Dream Clients

Santa
Santa

As I walk past pictures of angelic looking families gathered around a perfectly decorated Christmas tree, I laugh at how my Christmas experience at that exact minute is polar opposite. My arms are breaking from my shopping bags.

I’ve got an oversized dog bed hanging off of one arm (what was I thinking). My phone is ringing, it’s my printer on the line trying to get final signoff for an Everest sized project for one of my private clients. I’m carrying my toddler’s hat, gloves, coat on one spare finger, and she’s at my side yanking at my coat, too tired to walk because her new shoes she wanted to show Santa are hurting and is about to let the good folks shopping in this over crowded mall know just how much noise can come out a two year old’s lungs.

Ahhh, the holidays.

And a brand new year is peeking just around the corner.

If Santa asked you what you wanted for Christmas this year, would you tell him you wanted a bigger, more successful business? Would you say “hey Santa, can you bring me a boatload of new customers – and not those pesky, high maintenance kind who are always trying to drill me on price – but the kind who are funny, intelligent and fun to work with? And have the ability to pay me? You know, dream clients? Oh, and Santa, would you mind delivering me these dream clients every single week, to my front doorstep like clockwork so I never have to worry about prospecting for new business again and can really build my client base?”

Then the old man with the apple red cheeks and shiny black shoes would chuckle softly and say “well, it’s about time you asked…”

So here it is.

Straight from Santa’s sack.

The 8 Marketing Secrets To Attracting A Never Ending Supply Of Dream Clients For Your Business

  1. Know who your dream client actually is. Sounds obvious but few people have this part thought out. Most folk define their dream client by default as being – well, anyone who wants to pay me. Na-uh. Get clear.
  2. Make a list of 20 -100 companies or people who would be your dream clients. When I first started my copywriting business I set my eyes on working for the really big guys – the Fortune 100 Companies like Walt Disney, Coca Cola and Mercedes Benz. I made my list of 100 companies and looked at it every day, thinking of all the different ways I could “break in” to be able to work with them. I didn’t get to work with all 100. Actually I only got to work with 3 before I changed my focus, but those 3 big clients gave me more work than I could handle. Thing is I would have never have been able to work with them if I didn’t know from the start who I wanted to work with!
  3. Brainstorm how you could create the dream experience for those dream clients. Put yourself in their shoes. If it was you writing them the check, instead of the other way around, what would be the absolute ultimate, rave worthy experience if anything was possible? Now you have your new gold standard.
  4. Hold a focus group of your current dream clients. Take them out to dinner and ask them what you could better. You will be amazed at what they tell you and how much they appreciate you asking their opinion.  Work with your current client base.
  5. Truly there really is no marketing secret if you become a marketing nut. Marketing is the life blood of your business. Period. Remember that it’s not the best company who wins, it’s the best marketing. Make it your business to learn everything you can about real world marketing that has been tried, tested and proven in the battlegrounds of real life. Not crummy marketing theory that should work in principal but is unproven.
  6. Create a monthly, and weekly marketing plan for your business. Then implement it. Separate your marketing into 3 sections:
  • your lead generation
  • what you do to convert a prospect into a paying customer
  • what you do to keep a customer so they buy from you again and again.

7.  Make marketing your daily fix. Just like ordering your cup of Joe or having a lunch break. Spend a little time every single day working on your marketing. Don’t make your marketing a series of sporadic, haphazard events that happen in reaction to cash flow issues or “when you get the time.” Without marketing, you don’t have a business. So put it at the top of your list.

8.  Be remarkable at what you do. Give more than your clients expect. Follow up with them. Care about their success.

Photo Copyright (c) 123RF Stock Photos

Looking For Value In All The Wrong Places ...

If I was to conduct a straw poll of 100 different businesses and asked them just this one simple question: “What’s the one thing you have that’s of MOST value in your business?, what do you think the responses would likely be? Here’s what I think they’d be:

“Well, DUH – its in our super-fandangled-whiz-bang new product we’ve just released”

“It’s in our amazing customer service – our customers love us and refer us like crazy”

“it’s our incredible service”

“Our single biggest assest is that we have THE best storefront location in the city”

“My staff is my single biggest asset”

“Its our amazing technology”

The list goes on and on…you get the idea.

But here’s the thing. ALL of them would be wrong.

Unless, of course they made this one simple statement: ”It’s in our customer list – we’ve got full customer information for ALL our customers – name, address, mailing address, physical address, phone numbers, buying history, referral history …”

Most business owners mistakenly place high value on the physical or service aspects of their business – their location, factory, equipment, products or services. But all that is just “stuff”. Its easily replaced and easily duplicated.

The real value in your business is with your customers.

If you have a great customer list, then you, quite literally have at your fingertips the ability to create your own income on demand. Releasing a new product? Zaap! Send an email to your list with a great offer before you go to bed at night and cha-ching – you’re got money in your account when you wake up. Found a great product that your customers could really benefit from? Send an offer to your list and earn a commission off the sales.

If you’re not zealously collecting the names and contact details of not just your customers, but all your prospects too (especially your prospects) – you’re letting a HUGE amount of money slip through your fingers.

Stop the hemorrhaging and make this your number one priority starting today…

PS if you haven’t ordered yourself a FREE copy of my audio CD: 10 Secret strategies to get more clients, make more money, turn customers into raving fans and give more back in the new economy – you’re nuts. It’s a $97 value, yours FREE! Just visit my website at www.TheClientStampede.com and use promo code GetYerSpursOn at checkout.

Why Artists Are Starving

This last weekend I was at the Ann Arbor art fair, which is a pretty big deal in this part of the country. Hundreds of artists from all over the country sell their wares over a 4-day event downtown. The streets are closed to traffic and visitors flock to the event in the thousands. Unfortunately, the art fair ended up being held during the hottest week in recent history. Every artist I spoke to told me that this art fair was the worst one ever – many having attended for the last 10, 15, even 20 years. Weather aside, I made some very interesting marketing observations as to why these artists were REALLY experiencing slow sales, and none of it had anything to do with the weather.

  1. Very, very few of the artists greeted me when I came to look at their art. Most were sitting off at the back of the tent, fanning themselves with a newspaper or junk magazine, looking decidedly bored and frustrated. They didn’t get that people want to buy things from people. People want to hear stories; to understand how or why something is made. This is a HUGE mistake that, almost without exception, every artist I saw made.
  2. Very, very few people had any marketing collateral to give away – a few did have postcards, but there was nothing on them enticing to me to follow up with them. No irresistible offer - just pretty pictures; which doesn’t exactly get people rushing to the phone to place an order.
  3. I bought a couple of things including a pair of sterling silver earrings from a local metalsmith. NO ONE asked me for my contact information – not even for an email address. This is a giant mistake and shows that these artists have the mistaken idea that you get a customer to make a sale, instead of making a sale to get a customer. No matter how bad the weather, how poor the crowds, if any of these artists had been collecting contact details of past customers, they could have held a special pre-event show with special incentives next year for those VIP customers. After the art fair they could do a follow up “thank you” direct mail campaign to sell even more of their wares.

Instead the artists were 100% reliant on generating enough foot traffic and interest over the event not just to break even, but to actually turn a profit. I’m told that renting one of these booths cost in the thousands of dollars. Many artists schlepped their art, display cases and panels from as far away as California. No wonder they’re starving.

How To Use A Stealth Social Media Tool To Spy On Your Mailing List Subscribers

I recently stumbled across a fantastic tool that I want to share with you that answers that multi-million dollar question - how can I leverage social media to grow my business? (actually it's one of the top 3 questions I get asked by my clients all the time). The impact this one little tool could have on your business is monumental.  Are you ready for it?

The tool is called Flowtown and here's why it's incredible:

On Flowtown you upload an email or your entire email list.  FT  then trots off to all the major social networks and finds those people for you.  You'll be able to see WHO those people are and exactly what they're talking about.

That in itself is of huge value to your business.  But FT does a lot more than that.

(drum roll please)...

FT will then spider your lists to show you who your major influencers are, which of those people have others following them and how many followers they have.

Wow.  Imagine if you knew the top 5% of the most influential people on your list.  How would you treat them differently?  What kinds of relationships could you start up if you contacted them directly?

FT also enables you to hook a little script onto your opt-in forms, so when people opt in to hear from you - you'll be notified immediately when people of influence have joined your list.

The impact this one little tool could have on your business is monumental.  Just think about your mailing list for a second.  How much do you really know about the people on it?

If your mailing list is a bit, ahem, neglected - if you're missing major chunks of information about your prospects or customers, then not only can FT fill in the gaps, but you can know more about the people on it than you ever imagined.  And, almost in the blink of an eye you can know who the most valuable people are on it.

What takes most businesses years to figure out (if they ever actually do), you can know immediately.

So then you can treat these major influencers very very differently.  You can create special offers just for them - do whatever it takes to turn them into raving fans of your business, reach out to them for JV opportunities, ask them to become trusted advisers in your business and get their feedback on new products or services you're about to launch...  the possibilities are endless!