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11. Sell With Store Signs.
Use interior signs to tell customers about the goods and services you offer, such as free delivery, free alterations or free trials. If you stock a specialty line, like environmentally-safe products, point it out. If you’ve just received merchandise with a high-demand feature, let customers know.

Signs also provide an easy way to answer customers’ most commonly-asked questions. Post explanatory labels to help customers differentiate among various models. Write out shelf signs describing special features that make products outstanding values or unique in their field, or telling customers where to find accessories.

Use signs, in short, to tout your company’s competitive advantages and to make shopping easier, more informative and more motivating for your customers.

12. Act Now to Extend Your Seasonal Sales.
Is your business seasonal? If so, suggests business writer Carol June, utilize year-round marketing to improve your sales. Before the season, stimulate repeat sales by sending coupons to current customers for upcoming purchases or offering special deals on early orders. After the season, use follow-up mailings or phone calls to stay in touch with customers and encourage their loyalty. Or maintain interest with an end-of-season or off-season sale of leftover merchandise.

In the longer term, consider a second-season business or product line that would both be a logical extension of your current operation and appeal to your customers. A holiday fruitcake company, for example, might branch out into year-round baked goods; a ski shop, into camping gear. Or, if you’re a retail firm, expand not your season but your customer base by adding a catalog or direct-mail wholesale operation.

To sum up, marketing is a 365-day-a-year job. It demands persistent attention on satisfying customers’ needs. Equally important, it requires a constant program of efforts to develop your customer base and stimulate sales a program initiated and implemented most effectively by putting your own twist on direct, hard-working, tried-and-true ideas such as the 12 described above. For it doesn’t take novelty or large sums of money to succeed in marketing; first and foremost, it takes action.



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