In our daily engagements, we are involved and surrounded by numerous businesses and work environments. Every single passing day, a person is always in need of buying something while another is in dire need of selling something. Be it in the form of goods or services, the question a majority of businesses and companies ask is, "How can I win more clients?" In this post, we have consumer behaviour explained together with the different strategies that can be applied to win more clients in your business.
How do I bring more customers to my business? Without a doubt, there is no single easy or supernatural solution to attain more clients, but a combination of several techniques can come in handy for the business. Winning more clients is significant since clients are considered the lifeblood of any business. Therefore, the more clients are in the business, the higher the growth and expansion of the business, in addition to attaining more profits. To get a steady flow of clients into the business, one must invest in creating and maintaining relationships and enhancing proper networking as well as strategic marketing. Therefore, the strategies outlined below will come in tandem to ensure that you acquire and maintain more customers. But before we get down to listing these strategies, let us give an overview of what exactly consumer behaviour is.
What is consumer behaviour?
In layman understanding, consumer behaviour is the conduct of consumers under the influence of certain external and internal factors. However, as we are going to discover in this article, consumer behaviour is actually very broad. It encompasses those decisions and actions that influence the purchasing behaviour of a consumer. So, what exactly is consumer behaviour? Apart from the actions of consumers in the marketplace, consumer behaviour is also a study of how consumers (both individual customers, groups, and even organizations) select, buy, make use of, and dispose of those ideas, goods and services to satisfy their needs and wants.
The nature of consumer behaviour
Here is what characterizes consumer behaviour:
- It is constantly changing
- Varies from one consumer to another
- Varies from region to region and country to country
- Influences purchase decisions
- Varies from product to product
- Reflects status
Factors affecting consumer behaviour
It cannot be affirmed that the same factors influence certain consumer behaviours in all people. What drives a consumer to select a certain product may be different for another person. In most cases, the consumer selection process is informed by emotions and reasoning. These are the things that make people different. However, prudent business people do not wait for consumers to make such decisions at their own time. Below are the factors that are important in influencing consumer behaviour:
1. Purchasing power
The purchasing power of a consumer is critical in influencing the consumer’s behaviour. It is typical of consumers to analyze their capacity to purchase before they can actually decide on a product or service. This means that although a product is good, it cannot sell if it does not meet the purchasing ability of the buyers. The solution to this is by segmenting consumers according to their buying capacity. By so doing, you are able to determine eligible consumers thus improving your performance.
2. Group influence
People are easily swayed by group dynamics. The most basic societal groups have the biggest role to play here. Groups consisting of family, classmates, close relatives or neighborhood friends have a strong influence on the purchasing decisions made by a consumer.
3. Personal preferences
On a personal level, consumer behaviour is determined by what someone likes, dislikes, their priorities, values, and morals. When it comes to some industries such as fashion and design, food and beverages or even personal care, it is upon the company to take into consideration the personal view and opinion of consumers.
4. Economic conditions
This is one of the most influential external factors affecting consumer behaviour. Consumers are known to base their purchasing decisions on the prevailing market conditions not only during the time of purchasing but also before and after. This factor is considered most for expensive purchases such as a house or even a vehicle. When the economic conditions are favorable, consumers tend to be confident hence they can make purchases without even thinking about their personal financial liabilities.
5. Marketing campaigns
This strategy works well especially with people who are easy to influence. Some people only need to see something and they will buy it. This makes advertising a good choice for influencing the purchasing decisions of consumers. Marketing leads to great shifts in market shares of competitive industries through the influence they bring on consumers. Regular marketing may make consumers prefer one brand over another, hence establishing customer loyalty.
Types of consumer behaviour
Personal, social, and economic risks come into play when it comes to making important purchases. However, this is not always the case especially in purchases where consumers are not highly involved. To understand this concept better, here are the major types of consumer behaviour:
- Impulsive buying: Consumers that fall into this category are those who wake up with no plan to spend any money, but whenever they step out, they make purchases without even thinking twice. This type of buying is done without planning for it.
- Extensive decision making: Such people cannot make a purchase without careful analysis and planning. To them, even the smallest purchase is a decision to be made and it has to be budgeted for. Every purchase decision comes with economic risks. If the consumer feels like the risks are too much, then the purchase will not be done.
- Limited decision making: In this case, a consumer is going to make a purchase anyway but they have to go with what seems most practical at the moment. Purchases made here cannot stretch the budget, therefore, the consumer may go to great lengths researching on different brands.
- Routine response: It is a kind of conditioning that makes consumers select products they are accustomed to. A good example of a routine response is when a consumer buys a product with the smallest price tag without giving it too much thought.
Consumer behaviour: A strategic approach
The strategies outlined below will come in tandem to ensure that you acquire and maintain more customers.
1. Ask for referrals
Referrals are the most widely known form of attaining more clients. However, the problem arises as a majority of the individuals in business just sit back waiting for referrals. The mentality behind this relaxation is that any happy and satisfied client will definitely preach out your name out there to others. Unfortunately, this is always not the case. Even with great satisfaction from your goods or services, some of the clients may fail to refer you due to conditions such as being extremely busy with their schedules.
Therefore, to win more clients, find two or more happy and satisfied clients, instead of waiting, and ask for referrals from them. Rather than beating around the bush, first, you should check on the client then go directly into asking them for referrals. For instance, you could say something like this,
“Hello, how is your company fairing? It was a pleasure working with you and it is my hope that the project has been nothing short of a success. However, I am searching for more clients. Kindly connect me to other individuals or businesses that could be in need of my services. Thank you”.
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2. Partnership with other agencies
Another great way that you can win more clients into your business is through partnering with other agencies. In such a partnership, the agency can commit to bringing a certain number of clients on a weekly or monthly basis. For instance, you can enter into an agreement that the agency will send you at least three clients every month. One insightful tip in agency partnership is considering an agency that is larger or bigger than your business to reduce competition and the eventual loss of potential clients.
When you partner with an agency bigger than your company; the likelihood of getting more clients through them increases. In most cases, larger agencies may turn down certain offers when the budget is low, when they are not interested, when they are unavailable, or when they are lacking in the required expertise. In case this happens, the big company will definitely refer the potential client to another smaller business which could probably be yours.
3. Networking follow-ups
Once in a while, it is advisable to go through your old emails and browse for potential clients. These could be colleagues, schoolmates or other important individuals whom you had conversed with. Make a follow-up with such individuals and ask them if you could be of any help to them. This might not necessarily be in the form of the goods or services you are offering, but they could be in search of advice, feedback or a tip. By doing this, you are able to reconnect and recreate relationships with the correct individuals. Always remember, whenever you freely offer a helping hand to another person, they will one day come back to you to help you back or to return the favor.
4. Follow up on the lost clients
How do you retain clients? Every once in a while, you lose some clients. If this has ever occurred to you, it is high time you went through your old email conversations and look for such lost clients. Secondly, send them a message inquiring how their project is fairing and also ask if you could be of any help to them.
The technique of following up on the lost clients is worthwhile as it shows them that you care about them as well as their businesses. As a result, you could end up gaining another small task or even stimulate a new discussion in regard to seeking your services or goods, especially under the circumstances that the client is not satisfied with their current selection. However, even if you do not get lucky with getting hired, there is an opportunity that the client could refer you to another potential client.
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Starting a blog is another great way to win more clients. In blogs, people comment while others subscribe to the blogs that have appealed to them. To run a successful blog, begin by speaking about topics that relate to your business and that are appealing to your potential clients. You can blog about the goods you sell or the services you offer. By posting stuff relating to your business, your readers will view you as an expert in that particular field as you offer them with the right type of information. Therefore, in case any of your readers get the need to obtain something relating to your field of expertise, they will definitely seek you first as they are already aware of your expertise.
Upon successfully starting a blog, you may wonder how to attain more readers to read the posted information. To do this, you can mention a number of other successful bloggers or blogs that are connected to your products. Furthermore, you can also send the link of your blog to the various people around your network that you think might be interested or that know some other interested parties or individuals. By doing all these, you can be sure that the blog will get quite some traffic which is a great sign of prospective clients on the way. Even though blogging is time-consuming due to its need for consistency, it is a powerful means of winning more clients.
6. Design creative and attractive business cards
Upon proper execution, business cards are another profound way of marketing thus winning more clients. The business cards should be of high quality and creatively and attractively designed to make a great first-hand impression to the people. When you design creative and high-quality business cards, individuals who get a hold of them are immediately impressed as it is a reflection of the business.
Many are the times someone gives you a business card and you immediately throw it away or forget it in your wallet. However, if the business card is of high quality, creatively designed, and attractive, there is a likelihood of properly preserving it. In addition, if the card advertises something that appeals to you, higher chances are that you will definitely reach out for the quality services as depicted in the business card. Therefore, business cards that create a good and lasting first impression have a higher tendency of being passed around which means that there are higher chances of them landing in the hands of potential clients.
7. Network offline and online
Creating both offline and online networks is instrumental in winning more clients. To network offline, commit yourself to plan for and attend meetings and conferences where potential clients could be present. However, you should be very keen and wise in choosing the meetups to go to or the conferences to attend. For instance, if you go places full of your competitors, you will definitely have a hard time selling your brand.
On the other hand, online networking can be done through a number of ways. One of the best online platforms to network on is on LinkedIn. To effectively do this, fill a LinkedIn profile, giving updated information in regard to your business and attach samples. LinkedIn news feed offers you a place where you can share your website, blog posts or other materials relating to your work. You can also join groups on LinkedIn that are related to your field of expertise and there, you will obtain prospective clients.
8. Speak in public conferences
As I mentioned earlier, attending a conference is a great way of winning more clients. However, speaking at such conferences is a totally different and strategic technique of winning more clients altogether. As a way of winning more clients, find conferences that relate to your areas of expertise and reach out to the organizers of the conference for an opportunity to speak. In the conference, when given that platform, speak in regard to your business and back up the information with a show of your abilities, experience, and proficiency in addition to sharing your blog and website.
Although this technique is not easy for all to embrace such as those afraid of speaking in public, it is one of the greatest ways of building up your brand in a personal way. In addition, you gain the ability to forge new relationships with the audience at the conference. These individuals act as potential clients who could come knocking on your doors for your goods or services as exemplified in your expertise.
9. Social media
Proper use of social media is a great technique that you can use to win more clients. For instance, you can make use of Twitter Search to find potential clients. This search engine gives you a chance to get tweets from both people as well as companies that are looking to hire. In the search engine, the use of keywords or phrases such as 'hiring' or 'looking to hire' will help you to easily locate potential clients.
A majority of individuals use social media for entertainment and to have fun. However, proper utilization of sites such as Twitter goes a long way in helping you win more clients. For more success in Twitter Search, one useful tip is searching for different keywords and phrases. As a result, you will land on potential tasks and thus win more clients.
10. Be exceptionally personal
How do you improve clientele? Be exceptionally personal. When you become extremely personal as you reply to an email or a job advertisement, it helps you stand out against all your competitors. In most cases, potential clients receive numerous emails containing just a biography of the business and their website's link. To be different, put some effort into your response by getting personal but not too much overboard that could irritate the potential clients.
A majority of clients want to work with people who show that they understand exactly what the client needs. Therefore, as a way of winning more clients, you should strive to show your prospective clients that you really understand what they need. You should make them feel that your expertise is aimed at providing them with the best of services. Although it may take quite some time and energy, getting personal is an outstanding way to win more clients.
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11. Guest blogging
Even with a personal blog, guest blogging is another great technique to win more clients. In guest blogging, your task is to find out some of the blogs most read by your probable clients and request the bloggers for permission to guest-post on their blogs. When the permission is granted, you should aim at posting something that fits within the content of that blog but also mentioning information about your business that will be of great value to the readers.
Starting an individual blog offers you with the freedom to post any type of content you would want your audience to read. However, in guest blogs, the posting limitation is set by the bloggers, hence minimizing the freedom. Even with this restricted freedom, guest blogs are an important technique in winning more clients. One of the main benefits you can attain from a guest blog is the ability to share your proficiency as well as growing your brand with the use of another blogger's audience.
There you have it: consumer behaviour explained as well as different strategies that you can apply to see your business flourish as you win over more clients. Use them today to boost your business.
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