My personal approach is to stroll casually up towards the bar, pretending to eye up their beer with a faux decision-making face on, before veering off suddenly towards the toilets whilst giving the staff behind the bar a clear “just a minute!” smile
This raises the question, though: what is a customer? If I had been in the bar paying for drinks or food, then I am most definitely a customer but what if I had been in the bar the previous night with friends and might feasibly return again? Surely I am technically still a customer?
This might be a light-hearted example but it is illustrative of a more serious question businesses need to continually ask themselves: Who are your customers?
You will know who your existing customers are of course, and you will most likely know who you would like your customers to be but how many of the total visitors to your website are ‘ideal’ customers, and perhaps more importantly why are there visitors landing on your website who are not ideal potential customers?
Working out who your customers are
There are many resources out there to help you go about doing this but the value of knowing this information is that it allows you to begin to develop one or more marketing strategies that will resonate more effectively with each of your identified target markets.
Sell more often
Knowing who your ideal customers are allows you to sell more often by being more tailored with the content of your website, thereby increasing conversion rates of visitors to customers. The practice of conversion marketing is an effective way of monitoring how well specific areas, pages or pieces of content on your website are performing and making changes where necessary to maximise performance.
Generate more revenue
It also allows you to sell at a higher value as you can spend less time with customers who are not a good fit and more time developing relationships with those who are more likely to convert into long-term commercial partners
Working out how they buy
Having identified your target market, the next step is to work out how they buy your service. With this information you can develop a content or digital marketing strategy which can be syndicated beyond your website to attract potential clients whilst they are in ‘Buying Mode’ as well as being used throughout your own website to increase your conversion rates of, say, visitors to enquiries.
Furthermore, you can then begin to optimise the layout of your website to enhance their user journey, making sure the most relevant content is readily accessible at each stage of the customer journey.
That is not the end of it, though. Best practices can change, economies fluctuate. New technology is unlikely to cease offering up ever-increasing methods of interacting with people and your business itself may evolve its service offering.
So it is important to look at this kind of activity as an on-going concern because it is likely that your competitors will be and, well, you might find yourself getting caught short.