2. Compete basedon value.What will make customers or clients select your company vs. your competitor's? Most choose the service provider that offers the greatest value for their money. In many competitive markets,there's price parity among the principal players. So the best way to win business is not to cut your prices or rates, but instead add products or services that elevate your offer--making it too good toresist. This is called "bundling."
Take time to develop a service bundle that you know will appeal to your best prospects. You may need to test various offers until you find a winning combination;then modify your offer periodically to keep your incentives fresh.
3. Tempt customers with incentives.Customers who've had positive experiences with your company's services in the past will happilyreturn. But tempting new customers requires making a special offer. Businesses that provide home services, such as rug cleaning, painting, home heating or air conditioning, can benefit by sendingconsumers coupons through a marriage-mail provider, such as Valpak. You can choose households by ZIP code, and your coupon offer will be mailed in an envelope with others. Although you won't have theundivided attention of your consumer, mail from a known marriage-mail provider is often well-received, and runs for a fraction of the cost of stand-alone direct mail. For long-term results, create a specialoffer that will motivate new customers to make more than a single purchase.
4. Keep in touch.It costs considerably less to keep a customer than to win a new one, so it's smart to maintain a...