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How to increase your customer base

Elsewhere on this site we’ve discussed the importance of maximising your customers. If you’re not sure of how to increase your customer base, you might be glad to know it’s not a dark art – a little planning and common sense can pay off handsomely.

The process of widening the reach of your business is fundamentally one of marketing, but that can come in many forms. Networking with other businesses is a great way to discover new sectors and reach a new audience, and often doesn’t feel like you’re “doing marketing”. Build relationships with your suppliers and existing clients, find out where they do business, and instigate conversations within those areas. A few strategic phone calls or emails will put your name in front of lots of new people.

Another answer to the question of how to increase your customer base comes in the form of making your existing clients do the work for you. Set up a referral scheme whereby they earn rewards by sending business your way, and they’ll do so all day long. This can open up your business to a huge new audience… make sure that every new customer has a first-class experience, and they’ll start referring their contacts too. This can start a highly profitable snowball effect.

Submit articles about your business to trade magazines, business journals, industry websites… anywhere you can think of, really. This kind of marketing has to be carefully judged: you can’t send out the same article to every publication and expect great results. Editors aren’t interested in giving you a free shout out, but if there’s an interesting story that presents a solution to a perceived problem, you could well be on to a winner. If you’re not confident about writing it yourself, employ a professional copywriter to create the articles for you; when considering how to increase your customer base, you must always be aware that you’ll have to speculate in order to accumulate.

As you can see, if you’re unsure of how to increase your customer base, there are plenty of options out there. Think creatively – if you aren’t getting what you need from your existing clients, chance are you’re not venturing out of your comfort zone. Try a few different things and see what works best for your particular business – you might be surprised!

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