If you are reading this you are a photographer looking for a way to get your photography business started, or get an established business growing. Or maybe you have had a photography studio for a few years, and are stuck and cannot think of new ways of getting more customers.
Having owned a photography business for over 40 years, I guess the reason why you decided to set up your own photography business in the first place, was mainly to achieve FREEDOM.
Financial freedom, freedom to work for yourself, and the freedom to spend time with your family.
That was the reason that I loved having my own photography business. Being my own boss, living in a dream home, driving a fabulous car, and having some great holidays with my wife and kids!
Whether it’s the freedom to work for yourself and never have to work for a company or boss that you did not like, or to achieve financial freedom for you and your family, your quest to pursue freedom is an exciting challenge.
Some people only dream of financial freedom.
Others put a plan together to achieve it.
There is only one way to achieve financial freedom in your photography business. That is have marketing strategies to attract prospects that will lead to the acquisition of new customers, have a shoot for sales system, and have a proven system of selling the resulting images.
Getting customers is the biggest challenge in business, and it is also the area that photography business owners struggle with the most.
The good news is, once you understand that the business you are really in is the getting leads, and you when you get very good at it, you are virtually guaranteed success. Photographers tend to spend too much time behind their computers perfecting their images, and their marketing becomes almost non-existent.
I’ve spent the last 10 years as a photography business coach helping photography business owners around the world grow their businesses and profits by teaching them the art of getting a continuous flow of leads.
From my experience of starting a photography business from struggle to growing it to making millions of dollars over many years I created my unique “The Photographers 5 Steps to FREEDOM” coaching program.
The strategies contained in this E-book are based on a small part of what I am working with photographers every day right now.
I have other E-books in the series that cover Pricing, Products,
These are available in my Coaching Membership, details here
1. Learn To Overcome Objections
This is an area people tend not to focus on, and yet it’s so incredibly important. Business owners tend to focus on “I want more customers. Where am I going to place the advert for maximum exposure?” Yes, that’s important, but once you have their attention, you also need to look at any objections to the sale.
Let’s turn the tables and think of it like this: What’s stopping you getting more customers? I’ve already touched on leads, and about people inquiring. Every business has a conversion rate, which is the percentage of people who contact you and become customers. A percentage of people who visit your website, walk onto your premises, or phone you up have the potential to become customers, but it’s never 100 per cent. It could be anything from 1 per cent to 60 per cent, depending on who you are, where you are, and what you’re doing. It’s normally way under 50 per cent.
Understand that if you’ve paid for your marketing and advertising to bring that person close to becoming a customer, the cost is already there for you. So if you can increase that conversion percentage, that’s a very effective use of your time.
Why would somebody go to the trouble of inquiring about your business, filling in a form on your website, or picking up the phone to call you and then not buy? They’re obviously interested in what you’re selling. Assuming what you have is of good value and meets their needs, why wouldn’t the figure be 100 per cent?
The answer is customer objections. The thing that stops a sale happening is rarely that you don’t have what a customer needs or wants. Obviously, if you don’t have what they need or want, you let them go, but that’s not normally what’s going on. Normally, there’s an objection in your customer’s head.
Some of the big objections are money and time. “It’s too expensive,” is a big objection. “I don’t have time to invest in doing this,” would be another objection. You’re also going to have objections specific to your business.
If you pay attention to what your customers tell you, you – and your colleagues if you work in a larger business – should become very clear on what your customers’ objections are.
Literally list them one by one and, between you, work out smart answers to those objections. There will only be three or four objections you hear all the time, and you can get really good at answering those.
One of the big objections I hear from business owners is “I haven’t got time to do this. I’m busy.” I have an answer to that; if you’re a business owner who’s not willing and able to spend three out of 365 days a year immersed in the leading-edge, latest internet marketing because you’re too busy, you have big problems.” There’s a reframe or an answer to nearly every objection.
Obviously, to use testimonials, you have to ask for them. Please actively ask your customers for testimonials. Video testimonials are powerful and effective so it’s worth going to the time and trouble to record testimonials of your customers wherever possible. If you have customers coming to wherever you are face-to-face, keep a video recorder at hand to record them, with their permission of course. If you go out to them, take one with you. If you don’t have much direct contact with your customers, it’s worth you or somebody going out to them and recording these messages.
You must have written testimonials, but there is an issue that people don’t always believe their authenticity. That is why you need to at least have the person’s name. If they work for a business, include the business they’re in. Ideally, include a photo of the person. People can still be suspicious, but if they see a normal person just like them on your web page describing the experience they’ve had with you, it’s powerful. Just doing this one thing can boost response on a sales page by 30 to 80 per cent.
3. Multiple Follow-up
Focusing on those unconverted leads is crucial for any business. They should be number one on the list. Work those leads until they buy, die, or tell you to go away. The principle way to do that is with multiple follow-up, because most businesses give up far too easily.
Let’s say somebody emails or phones you about what you have to offer, and you have a record of who they are. Most people will reply to the email or phone the person up, and maybe they’ll send something in the post or send an email with additional information attached. In other words, they’ll follow up with that customer once or twice. That is what 90 per cent of businesses do.
There have been so many interesting studies on this, it’s been researched again and again. On average, if you do multiple follow-ups properly, it takes seven points of contact to convert a lead, a potential customer who has inquired with you, into a buying customer.
The form of contact is going to vary slightly depending on the business you’re in, but the principle is always the same. On average, your customer is going to need an email, another email, maybe a phone call, maybe another email, maybe something in the post, maybe a face-to-face meeting if it’s appropriate for you, maybe another email or two, and only then do they become a customer.
I ask a question at our Entrepreneur Summit, and the answer never fails to amaze me. I ask, “Who’s been on my
email list for three years, and this is the first time you’ve actually spent any money with me?” Every year, there are 30, 40, and sometimes 50 people who raise their hand. If they’ve been on my email list for three years, they’ve probably had 150 to 200 emails from me. Most businesses and entrepreneurs give up at just one or two.
You absolutely need to do multiple follow-ups. If somebody comes within a mile of your business, you want to have a system in place for this, whether it be email, direct mail, telephone calls, or other forms of good marketing. We’re going to touch on some of those other forms of marketing as we go through our 77 steps. As a basic principle though, you’ve got to have a strong multiple follow-up system in place and be communicating with people again and again.
4. Use Snail Mail
Going on for over 100 years now, direct mail has been an incredible way of getting customers into any business, but it’s not used by small businesses anything like as much as it should be.
Everyone is excited about the internet, and I’m generally well-known for the internet material I do. I’m a raving fan of the internet as much as anybody else, but if direct mail is still an equally valid source of new business and new customers for you, why wouldn’t you use it?
The challenge of getting somebody who doesn’t know you and who’s never spent money with you to give you money is a significant one. A lot of that can be done on the internet, but there is a big proportion of the population who still value and want something physical to look at, understand, and literally hold in their hands before they give you money.
The beauty of direct mail is that it’s so personal. How else can you get right in front of people having a direct conversation with them, saying whatever you need to say to them, in their kitchen or as they sit in the garden? Use direct mail.
We’re focusing here on getting new customers, but the nice thing is you can use this for your existing customers too. It has to be said that it’s easier to get your existing customers to spend money with you through any form of marketing, including direct mail. You definitely want to do it with existing customers, but I really hope you’ll try this out with new customers as well.
Next is getting your existing customers to give you your new customers. Before you spend any marketing and advertising money, you should encourage your customers to give you new customers for free, through referrals.
Pretty much everybody gets referrals. A lot of businesses actually exist on them. Almost without exception, the referrals are accidental. In other words, they sort of happen by accident because the business owner does nothing to get them, other than providing a good product or service to the customers they have. They are in no way being proactive in getting referrals.
You want to be proactive about this. You want to have a system in place. The absolute first thing you want to do is have a referral culture in your business. A referral culture involves your customers understanding that referrals are a core part of how you grow and that they, as your customer and as part of the relationship, almost have a requirement to give you referrals.
That might sound a bit strong, but you can do this effectively, build it into the system, and have a dialogue with the customer when they first become a customer of yours. You can say, “I build my business primarily through word- of-mouth recommendation with individuals like yourself. If I do a great job for you, would you be willing to recommend me to friends, family, and colleagues?” Who’s going to say no to that?
The interesting thing is just putting that concept in people’s heads, literally implanting that idea in their mind, will increase referrals on its own. If every customer that became a customer of yours next week brought one person into your business, and then that person brought one more person into your business, you’d never have to do any marketing or advertising again. That is the sheer power of referrals.
6. Improve Sales Skills
Your ability to sell effectively is as important to your ability to get customers as anything else, and it always will be. If you have a team around you, the same obviously applies for your team.
I highlight this because most business owners don’t go into business to sell. They don’t think, “I’d like to leave this lousy job I’m in and spend all day selling things to people,” because most people don’t particularly like the idea of selling. You normally go into business because you really want to get out of the job you’re in, or you’re really motivated to carry out a service or offer a particular product. Which is great, however, as I’m sure you’ve realised by now, this is nowhere near enough to be successful. Everything in your business success boils down to just two things. Sales and marketing.
Whether you’re growing a huge company or starting a little business from your back bedroom, you are an entrepreneur. As an entrepreneur you have to get great at selling, not just so you yourself can sell, but so that you can also make sure the key people on your team are also doing it well.
There are all sorts of ways to improve your sales skills. You can take courses, read books and attend seminars, but my core message to you is that you need to understand the fundamental importance of sales as part of the customer attraction and acquisition strategy within your business.
One thing, if you hope to have a successful photography business, is to learn how to sell.
Once you have selling skills, you will never be short of money.
7. Ask for The Sale
Another thing in the sales process is going to sound ridiculously obvious, but it’s important. You must ask for the sale. It’s a tragedy how many salespeople, but also business owners generally, do everything well when they communicate to a customer – they present what they have, answer questions, and even sometimes overcome objections well – but when it comes to that key moment to say, “Should we confirm the order now?” or “How would you like to pay?” they don’t say it. Maybe they have some psychological hang-ups in place. You must ask for the sale, and you must make sure your team asks for the sale.
There can be many people involved in your business, whether they’re salespeople or the receptionist. If you think the receptionist who answers your phone isn’t a salesperson involved in the sales process, you’ll want to think again. Anybody involved in the sales process needs to be awarded and compensated in a way that is linked to the sales.
8. Send More Emails
Let’s jump to the internet briefly and talk about email. If you want more customers, send more emails. Nobody is sending enough emails. You want to send at least one email a week to your customers, if not more. Ideally, you want to have a relationship with them where you can send more because not every single email you send is a sales marketing email. Some are just adding value by giving useful information. According to a 2018 study, there will be more than 3.8 billion email users world-wide by 2019, over 100 million more than the previous year. So not only is email use increasing rapidly year-on-year and is many people’s preferred way of communication, it enables businesses to tap into customers around the country, around the world, and at no financial cost to you and your business. And, perhaps more importantly, your email subscribers have already explicitly told you they want to hear from you by giving you their email address. Capitalise on that. Send more email.
9. Get Your Emails Are Opened
If you want to get more customers, you need to send more emails, but there’s no point in sending them if your customers are not opening them. If you look at open rates in email delivery, they are often not very good. Photographers should expect a 25% open rate, but if you don’t use the right subject line and the right content then that it can be as low as 10 or 12 per cent.
When an email comes into a prospects inbox, they are going to be selective about the ones you open, so you must use strong subject lines in your email.
10. Test And Measure
Test teaser copy on the outside of the envelope. Again, you’ll see this on the mailings you get from big companies. Why don’t small businesses do this? This is copy on the envelope, words that encourage and entice people to read. It could be a couple of sentences or just one word. It could simply say “private”, “private and confidential”, “top secret”, or something similar to increase intrigue, and therefore, readership.
If you look at the copy on the envelopes from bigger companies, it’s the credit card companies and people like that who tend to use teaser copy, but a lot of the copy is not very good. It’s not being written by people whose income depends on it. If you’re willing to do this strategy well, it will make a difference.
By now hopefully you’re beginning to see you have an awful lot of options for getting more customers. This next strategy can be applied to direct mail, but it applies to all of your marketing.
You must use testimonials. They are a great way of getting more customers. There is a proportion of the population, probably 30 or 40 per cent, for whom social proof is a key element of their buying decision. Social proof is the thinking that, “Everybody else is doing this. Let’s do this too.”
Think of the growth of Apple’s products, like the iPhone. Would it be fair to say that social proof is playing a part in its growth? If you look around you, everybody is doing this.
Everybody has an iPhone. Everybody is going to the Apple Store. Social proof is important. For a good chunk of the population, it’s really important to the extent that they actually won’t do business with you if there isn’t some social proof.
Having real-life stories and case studies from people who’ve experienced and benefited from what you’ve got can’t fail to increase your sales, so you want testimonials on your website and any written material you have. You can even include testimonials in your emails.
If you meet customers face-to-face, you actually want to have a book of testimonials ready to pull out. The time to pull them out is when the customer comes up with the objections we talked about earlier. “Your product is a bit expensive”, to which you can reply “Can I show you something? Here are some people who also raised the issue of price, and here’s what happened when they went ahead and did business with us. Here are their stories.” Use testimonials.
12. Facebook Live
Before we had conference calls, teleseminars, and webinars, we’d do the same thing at a live event. This is still a great opportunity for you. It’s as good for local, regional businesses as it is for nationwide businesses. A live event is where you get prospective customers into a room, and you essentially sell to them en masse by providing them with information about whatever it is you do.
An example of a business this works well in, is financial services. Let’s say you sell pensions, life insurance, or investments. You put on an evening event in the town you’re in, at a nice hotel meeting room somewhere, about how to retire rich. Call it something enticing like “Seven ways to retire rich when no one is able to do it.”
You send out a mailing – this is great for postcards – or an email telling people about this. You say, “In this economy, people are not getting any return on their investments. They’re not able to retire, let alone retire rich. Come to this free event,” and they’re always free, “where we’ll show you seven things you must know about retiring rich.” It’s free, and we’ll give you a cup of coffee and biscuits, whatever it may be.
You get 20, 30, 40, or 50 people into the room. For an hour, you show them how good you are at your subject. You blitz them with great tips, information, and tools. Then you present and sell your stuff. You may only convert 10 per cent of the room, but if you sell investment advice and you
13. Shopping Centre Displays
Could you be using conferences and tradeshows to sell more of your products and services? If you do, there’s a secret. Most people pay all this money for a stand or store, stand there all day hoping and waiting, and then wonder why they don’t get any sales. You want to use your stand at the conference or tradeshow as a lead generation tool. Have some kind of incentive or offer to motivate good prospective customers to do business with you. Any form of marketing needs to be eye-catching and provide some kind of reward. Tradeshows and conferences are no exception. Treat your stand as if you would any other marketing strategy. Be smart, spend some time thinking of ways to attract potential customers visually or with an offer they can’t refuse, it will absolutely pay off.
14. Facebook Advertising
There are a lot of myths and nonsense spoken about social media, including Facebook. You must be careful because a lot of it is a complete waste of your time and resources.
The truth of the matter is there are very few businesses making significant money by tweeting all the time and playing around with their profile pages on Facebook. However, there is significant money being made from advertising on Facebook. You can start playing around with this for a few pounds or dollars. It’s incredible.
There are two key things to understand about Facebook advertising. The first is the phenomenal reach that this has. Fifty per cent of all internet users spend an average of half an hour a day on Facebook. It’s unbelievable. Personally I think it’s a complete waste of time, but that’s what people want to do.
If 50 per cent of all internet users spend half an hour a day on Facebook, that also means 50 per cent of your customers spend half an hour a day on Facebook. On its own, that would be significant but the real icing on the cake is that Facebook also has amazing targeting. You can find your customers without having to spend a fortune reaching everybody else.
Half your customers watch TV every day, but you can’t run TV ads to reach your customers. The cost is prohibitive because you have to run ads to everybody, including people who will never be a customer of yours in a million years.
However, on Facebook, you can target people very specifically. You can target them geographically, so you can just reach people within 10, 20, 30, or 40 miles of where you are based. You can target them by age, by the relationships they’re in, or whether they’re male or female.
There’s also a huge area where you can target them by their interests. You can target them if they’re business owners, if they’re into horse riding or design, or if they’re fans of Coronation Street. You can target them if they’ve read certain books. The list goes on and on.
Here’s the thing. Your customers, the people who spend money with you, have certain things in common. If you’re in the wedding industry, that certain thing your customers have in common is they’re getting married. You can easily find them on Facebook because there’s a category for people who are engaged. Maybe you sell fashion products to people who are into certain designers, read certain magazines or books, or like certain TV shows. You can target them precisely on Facebook.
If you’ve not done this before, go to www.facebook.com/advertising. I should get paid for this by them, but I don’t. Just start playing around, you will learn a lot just by playing around with the options you have. Maybe set up an ad and put 20 pounds or dollars in there.
15. Local Publicity
Here we are in this amazing internet world with many online choices when it comes to your marketing, customer acquisition, and business growth. There are more choices than most of us have time to deal with. That has led to people regarding traditional advertising in newspapers and magazines as almost old-fashioned. That’s one issue. The second issue is that in an economic downturn, the first thing most business owners do is pull back on their marketing and advertising spend, which is a really counter-productive thing to do.
The combination of these two factors means that people aren’t advertising as much in newspapers and magazines. This is a real mistake, and I would strongly encourage you to look again at the idea of newspaper and magazine advertising.
Readership is going down slightly because of the move online but there is still a huge readership for these publications.
This lack of advertising in traditional media means two things. First, the prices have gone down considerably. You can often reach people for 50 or 60 per cent of what it would have cost you three or four years ago. That can turn an underperforming ad into a profitable ad. The other really cool thing is, because a lot of business owners have pulled back, there’s often less advertising in the publications, so
there’s less clutter. This means your message jumps out more than it would otherwise.
Bear in mind that I’m not telling you to throw huge amounts of money at any of these strategies. I am strongly encouraging you to test on a small scale. The great thing about traditional advertising is, if we can get newspaper and magazine ads to work for you, they can run month in and month out – and maybe week in and week out – for years, to bring in an ongoing stream of new customers at very little cost to you.
16. Call to Action
Make sure your ad, marketing message, or web page includes a compelling offer and a proper call to action, or “CTA”. A CTA is telling people what to do. It’s a really important part of any marketing piece.
We’ve already discussed how salespeople and entrepreneurs often don’t ask for the sale, and the same is true of many marketing pieces and ads. They could be really good, but they let themselves down at the end because they don’t tell people what to do next.
If you want more customers, you need to tell your potential customers precisely what to do. Tell them, “Go to this website,” or “Pick up the phone and call this number.” It may sound obvious. It may even sound like it’s a bit too much, but it isn’t. People are busy and they often need leading. They need to be told what to do.
17. Phone Calls
The key to using telephone marketing is to serve and not to sell. The big objection most businesses have when I talk about this is, “I don’t want to pressure and pester my customers.” No, you don’t.
You’re a customer of various businesses, both as an individual and in your own business. How many of them call you up the week after you spent money with them just to check how you’re doing with what you’ve purchased? If they did that, wouldn’t you respond positively?
If that turned into a conversation where they didn’t push stuff on you but asked about what you’re doing and what your needs and interests are, there’s a reasonable chance you might buy from them in that phone call. If not, in the days, weeks, or months ahead you will be more predisposed to that business. You want to use the telephone as part of an overall strategy of adding strong value to your customers and potential customers.
18. Use Deadlines
A great strategy for increasing your sales and attracting more customers is to use deadlines. There’s a saying that a sales offer without a deadline isn’t an offer. A deadline is a very important and powerful element of marketing.
We deliberately use a lot of deadlines in our marketing. You may have gotten this from one of our weekly offers. We offer certain products at certain prices up to a certain point. There’s a clear deadline, and then it’s cut off. Deadlines encourage people to act.
Here’s one of the secrets about being an entrepreneur and marketing. Everyone thinks getting your customers to buy is like an on/off button where they decide to buy or not buy from you but that’s simply not how it works.
The people who buy, do decide to buy from you. But it’s not that the people who don’t buy decide not to buy from you; it’s often that they never decide. They postpone the decision, so the decision never happens.
If you understand only this, it’s huge. It’s not that the non-buyers say, “I don’t want that.” They’re postponing the decision, especially if it involves spending money. If I can think about it tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year, I’m going to do it. If you can force your customers to make a decision within a certain timeframe, your sales will skyrocket.
Think of how this works in the high street. Sales have deadlines attached to them. They don’t go on forever. How many ads do you see in newspapers and on TV? “It ends at 5pm on Friday.” They do that because it works. It forces you to make a decision. If you know when the sale ends, you’re interested in buying, and if you don’t do something by 5pm on Friday, you are effectively making the decision to do nothing.
19. Add Bonuses
Another great way to increase sales and attract more customers is to add bonuses to your offer. Hopefully, one of the things you’ve learned so far, is that getting customers into your business is not one-directional. There are levels of strategy, and if you work on all the levels at the same time, you will do extraordinarily well.
Some of the things we’ve covered so far, are at the level of finding people who don’t know about you yet. If you do advertising, pay-per-lick, or direct mail, you’re going out there and getting new customers. That’s one level of doing things but there’s a whole other level we’ve alluded to several times, which is increasing the percentage of the people interested in what you have, who will actually buy from you. That alone is transformative for any business.
In some businesses, 90 to 95 per cent of the people who enquire never buy, so how can we get that figure higher? If we can get those conversions higher without spending any money, it’s wonderful, and one of the easier ways to do that is to add bonuses to incentivise people to buy. You can say, “I’m going to give you this product. It’s £100, and I have all these bonuses to add on and give you as well.”
People often laugh at infomercials, but they’re worth paying attention to because it’s extremely difficult to make an infomercial work. The people who do make it work put a lot of time, energy, and testing into it. If you watch carefully, one of the things they do is make the bonuses seem to be worth more than the actual product. You may have heard them say, “But wait. There’s more.”
Tie this in with what smart marketing is all about, which is buying customers. It’s not about “Can we get this sale, and how much money can we make on the first sale?” It’s about “Can we get this customer through the door in the first place so that we can sell to them for the next 100 years?” We’re willing to do whatever works. So in this way It’s worth adding bonuses.
If you can, add bonuses that don’t cost too much money. Even if they do cost you some money, try to add some bonuses that really will incentivise and push more of your customers over the edge.
20. Buy Your Ad Space Cheaper
You can buy your advertising space cheaper by calling the salesperson just before the copy deadline. This is a really underused strategy. If you are on a sales team selling advertising at a newspaper or magazine, or even some of the internet outfits out there, you’re on a bonus; you tend to get paid very high commissions which tend to be group commissions. They are normally set as monthly bonuses but it depends on the publication.
Let’s say you’re selling to a monthly publication or a radio station. They are going to have certain days, probably at the end of the month, when they tally up everybody’s sales and dish out a bonus if you hit target, meaning everyone is trying to hit target.
Here’s how to take advantage of that: Call them the day of the deadline. Call them on the last day of the month, or the day before the deadline, and say, “Here’s the deal. You offered me this ad at £600. I just can’t do it. It doesn’t work for us. If it’s of any interest whatsoever, I’ll give you £300 to run this ad.” If they know they’re hitting target, they’ll often go for it. That’s a 50 per cent saving in your advertising cost.
Try to find out in your casual conversations with them when the deadline is, they’ll more often than not tell you. They’ll say, “I need a decision on this. The deadline is Tuesday for the next publication.”
21. Third Party Affiliate Gift Programs
You could do all these strategies we’ve covered so far very effectively for the next ten years, and you will get a lot of customers. If you and I met in ten years’ time, you could tell me, “This is what we did, and we attracted 5,000 customers as a result.”
But what if we could go to somebody who’s already done the equivalent of that work. What if we could go to two, three, or four companies who’ve done the equivalent? They’ve put in the grind, spent the advertising money, and gotten their customers. What if we could do a joint venture with them to access those customers without having to wait.
I started off a long time ago doing marketing consulting one at a time in companies. I did a lot of traditional marketing, like direct mail, and when I look back, I actually think: “That was a bit daft.”
Let’s say you took everything away from me, dumped me in the centre of Britain, and said, “You need to start fresh to make your money, and all you’re allowed to do is marketing consulting.” Assuming nobody knew who I was, I could start knocking on doors and proving what I could do.
Or instead, I could sit down with a big or medium-sized accounting firm that had 400 small or medium-sized- business owners and say, “I can show these business owners how to make more money. If they make more money, you make more
them, and I’ll also give you 20 per cent of the income I get from them forever. All I need you to do is send them a letter. I’ll even pay for posting the letter to them. Send them an email too.” If we were in a local area, I could say, “Get them all into a room one day, and I’ll do a free seminar for them.” Overnight, I could get myself 20, 30, or 40 clients rather than doing all that legwork.
The question to ask if you want to pursue joint ventures is (excluding competing businesses) “who already has access to the people you want to reach?”
It’s kind of crazy that retail stores don’t do this more often. If I’m a hairdresser and there’s a beauty salon down the street, why aren’t I working with the beauty salon, swapping customers, and doing joint ventures together?
Think of people in industries that provide things around the home, like people who sell curtains or sofas or gardening services. Why on Earth do they not have joint
ventures with the local estate agents? This stuff is not complicated, it’s really straightforward, but not a lot of businesses are doing it properly.
22. Create Time
There’s a lot going on in your life that’s directly linked to the number of customers you get and the amount of money you’re making, that may not seem obviously linked to the number of customers you have and the amount of money you’re making.
As the owner of a business, whether you are a one- person business or a large business, chances are you play a key role in getting customers into your business. If we made a note of every single thing you do in your working week from when you get up in the morning until you go to sleep at night and then we highlighted which were playing an important role in getting more customers into your business, you would be shocked at what a small proportion of your week that is.
It is a small proportion both in terms of what you’re doing, and the time spent on it. Normally, about five to 10 per cent of the business owner’s week is spent on getting new customers or effective marketing. Call it marketing, advertising, or whatever you want, but it’s stuff that directly relates to everything I’ve already covered.
It’s not that the other things you’re doing aren’t necessary or even important. The question is whether they should be done by you. I would suggest that getting customers is the most
Therefore, getting better at it is the most important thing in your business. If we could take care of that, providing you have a good product or service, everything else falls in place.
You want to be very focused on the use of your time. Unless your business is in this extraordinary place where it’s already making tons of money for you, you want to start getting quite ruthless about anything using up your time that is not helping get more customers into your business.
You can’t outsource this. You can’t pass this buck to other people in the business. I have a lot of people working with me in various ways to get new customers into my business. My web developer, the people who run the back- office side of things, and the person who looks after the direct mail are all playing a big role in getting customers into my business. I have people who help me hands-on with marketing campaigns.
However, I don’t pass on the overall responsibility for getting customers into my business. First, it’s too important. Second, nobody is going to do it as well as I do. That is not because this is my subject but because, as the business owner, nobody cares more than you and me about this.
This is too important for other people to do, so start getting ruthless about using your time wisely. You want to make a really tough decision about anything you’re doing in your business that doesn’t involve getting new customers.
If you’re going to carry on doing it, you must be pretty certain nobody else can do it or that you can’t outsource it to somebody else. You may start letting things go, and they may not be done quite as well as they used to be done. That
doesn’t matter because you can sort that out if you start spending more time in your business. My advice as an entrepreneur is that you should spend at least 50 per cent of your time working on getting new customers into your business.
23. The AIDA Principle
AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action. There is a core principle in all marketing for attracting more customers that works everywhere. This will work on your website, sales letters, brochures, emails, and in actual conversations with potential customers. The AIDA principle is the formula a customer goes through in their head that leads to them buying. The more you can direct that process to occur, the more money you’ll make because the more sales you’ll get.
If I arrive at your web page, there’d better be a compelling headline that grabs my attention and keeps me reading. You need to keep my interest, or I’m gone. Interest isn’t enough though. It’s not enough for me to read and be interested in your newspaper or magazine ad. You need to turn the interest into a desire. Get people wanting something. You are 80 per cent there once you have the desire, but that’s still not enough. There are a lot of things people want, but do they actually take action and get them? You now need to turn all that desire into action.
If you start talking to your customers about taking action and buying something from you, but you don’t have their interest or desire, you’ve missed an important step.
If you’re on the phone to a customer, or if they’re physically with you and you feel that you’re losing them a bit, ask yourself where you are in the AIDA process.
24. Complimentary Photography Sessions
Free trials are a great way to get more customers. When two parties do business with each other, one of the two sides are taking on the risk, and it’s normally the customer.
If you sell me a nice table for 500 pounds or dollars, who’s taking on the risk? I am because if I give you my money and decide I really don’t like the colour of the table after three days, that’s tough. I bought the table. I’m taking on all the risk.
If you can reduce or eliminate the risk for your customers, sales will skyrocket. Any time you can let your customers try something out risk-free, it will have a dramatic impact on your profits.
For some businesses, that’s very easy to do. For others, it’s not. If you sell brand-new cars, you’re probably not going to lend them the car for a couple of weeks to try it out, although I still think it would be an interesting strategy to test.
Sometimes you have to let people have the experience of an element of the business. If I’m doing complex, high- end office installations, I’m not going to install a new office on a free trial basis where, if you don’t like the six months of work I’ve done, I’ll unpack it and take it away in boxes. But if I can sit you down with an incredible 3D example of what this is going to be like for you, that’s a form of a free trial.
Here’s the question for you to ask. How can you give your customers and potential customers an experience of what you have to offer without them having to give you any money? The more radical you’re willing to be with this, the more effective it will be.
I mentioned restaurants earlier. If I could cook, I would open a restaurant because my biggest frustration at bad marketing is that done (or not done) by restaurants.
There was a series on TV a few years ago about people starting new businesses. Two or three of them were restaurants. The basic story was these people, who were often couples or families, would give up their jobs, re- mortgage their home, and spend a quarter of a million opening and fitting out this restaurant, getting everything done, and employing staff. Then they would struggle because there were no customers.
There was nothing wrong with the restaurant or the cooking, but they had no idea when it came to marketing. They assumed that if you build a great restaurant, people will come and sit in it. That is simply not true. If you build a great website or sell a great product or service, that has nothing to do with whether people are going to buy it or not. It’s all about the marketing.
If you want to open a restaurant, find an underperforming restaurant that already exists and do a deal with the owner to sort out their marketing. It will save you a quarter of a million (Send me a commission cheque if you do this).
Instead of spending £250,000, all you would have to do is allocate £3,000 to £5,000 for the following: When the restaurant opens, send an invitation to every qualified customer. This would be everybody who would potentially be a good customer, which would be anybody living in a reasonable home who has a reasonable income within your area, and you can buy lists with that on, and possibly businesses if you’re doing business lunches. Send all these people lovely-looking invitations to have a free meal. You’ll even throw in a glass of wine.
How much would that cost to give somebody a free meal and a glass of wine? Let’s say it’s £10. To get 1,000 people to try out your restaurant would cost you £10,000 of your £250,000. If you do a great job with those 1,000, you give them another voucher. When they come back to have their next meal, they get another free glass of wine. Out of the 1,000 people, you probably got 300 or 400 raving customers. Give them a referral system to bring other people. Sorted. Providing your restaurant sells decent stuff, you’re done. That’s all you have to do, offer a free trial.
25. Expand Your Reach
So far, everything has been around doing what you currently do in exactly the way you currently do it but doing the marketing better. That’s great, and you want to be doing all that, but next, I want to expand your thinking a little bit.
Chances are you are selling what you are selling in a limited geography. You may be a local business, and you’re selling within a few miles of where you’re based. You may be a regional business, and you sell within your region. You may sell nationally. You may even sell to some other countries. Whichever one of those categories you fall into, if I were to ask you if you can sell what you sell in other geographic areas, chances are the answer is yes.
If you’re serving an area that has a certain population and we could double, triple, or multiply by a factor of ten the population you service or sell to, that would be a great way of bringing in more customers. What about doubling, tripling, or quadrupling the customers you bring into your business? Bear in mind, as you get better at your existing marketing, all these strategies can be rolled out as well.
One of my big messages to entrepreneurs is that wealth is a choice. The amount of money you have in your bank account is a choice. Everybody thinks the world decides how much money you’ve got. Well, not at the level you’re playing at. Once you’re a smart, marketing-savvy entrepreneur, wealth is a choice. What choices are you making about how much money you earn?
You might not want to sell to the whole country. You might not want to sell to Europe and America. That’s fine, but it’s a choice. Consider expanding your geography.
26. Create Unique Products
Consider expanding your products. There’s a truth about every single business out there. If we took your top 20 or 30 per cent of customers, there’s almost certainly stuff they’re not buying from you now that they would be willing to buy if you offered it to them.
That stuff might be directly related to your product or service, or it might be something unrelated. When I discussed joint ventures, I asked why estate agents aren’t teaming up with all the other companies. It works both ways. The sofa company, the curtain company, and the gardening company are a bit daft for not teaming up with the estate agent.
The estate agent, if they were willing to effectively expand their product base, would benefit incredibly. The estate agent will tell you, “I can’t expand my products because I only have one thing I sell. I sell houses, and people live in a house for eight years. There’s nothing I can do.” This is nonsense. The real power in your business is the relationship you have with your customers, and we’re talking about leveraging that relationship. It’s a very powerful thing to do.
27. Measure and Test Your Marketing
Testing is the foundation of all marketing. It directly relates to getting more customers into your business. The basic principle is you want to test all your marketing. First, you want to test new marketing methods, like some of the ones I’ve been offering you here. I’m not promising every single one of these will be wonderful for you. I am promising that if you’re willing to test and find out which ones are, some of them will be game-changers.
Finding out that something doesn’t work is really important and useful. It’s just as important as finding out what does work.
When we do any form of marketing, like the pay-per- click ads, we want to test different ads to improve the response. Any form of testing that improves the result of your marketing brings you more customers. If you’re running a successful ad in a newspaper or magazine, test it with a completely different headline. If that gives you a 15 per cent increase in customers, there you go. You must measure and test all of your marketing.
28. The 80/20 Principle
This is a more advanced strategy, but you definitely want to do this. You want to attract new customers into your business, and you want to do it fast. If you want to be successful and wealthy, you don’t want to spend all your time thinking, “How can I get more customers?” You want to ask, “How can I get more really good customers?” It’s a different level of thinking.
The 80/20 principle applies in virtually every business. We find that about 20 per cent of your customers generate about 80 per cent of your profits. There are all sorts of reasons for this. We don’t need to go into them here, but it’s a very standard rule. It can vary a bit, maybe it’s 70/30 or 85/15, but the point is it’s never evenly proportionate to the effort you put in. Not all your customers are worth the same to you. There’s a chunk of your customers who are worth more, normally a lot more.
Let’s suppose you acquired 1,000 customers over time, and of those 1,000 customers, 80 per cent of the profits in your business only came from 20 per cent of them. We can go out there and get another 1,000 customers, which is great because that would double the size of your business, but what if the next 1,000 customers all came from the same category of that 20 per cent? I can’t even do the maths on what that would do to your business. It would be incredible.
In the back of your mind as you implement all these strategies, you also want to think about how to get not just new customers, but the best new customers.
As far as you can, start profiling your customers. First, identify the groups spending the most money with you. See what patterns and commonalities there are. They’ll possibly be in a certain age group or in certain types of businesses. If you sell to consumers, there may be bias toward male or female. Maybe women are your best customers. There may be a bias to certain geographical areas or toward income levels. You may do better with wealthier people.
You want to know all this so that when you do your marketing, you can target people, and there are two ways to do this.
You can do this informally yourself if you’re a smaller business. Think about the customers, talk to them, look at their lives, and find out what’s going on. If necessary, survey them. Send them an email to one of those online survey systems.
If you have a larger business, you can do this professionally through a company. We did this process last year. You give the company all your customer information, including how much these customers have spent. They do whatever they do with their computers and numbers, and they come back with a report showing that your best customer is in this age group, this social group, or lives in these kinds of areas. Then we can go back with our marketing and target the right people.
I mentioned guarantees when we talked about risk elimination. If you want more customers, guarantee what you sell. It’s as simple and straightforward as that. You should have strong, compelling guarantees throughout all your marketing and advertising. People understand this logically, but they’re not always doing it.
If somebody spends money with you and they absolutely hate what you do for them, chances are you’ll probably give them a refund or partial refund, depending on what you’re selling. Given that’s the case, you want to be explicit about that. You want to make it a core part of your marketing message. On your website and marketing material, guarantees should be everywhere. Trust is important, and it sells.
30. Sell Benefits, Not Features
Make sure all your marketing is talking about the benefits and not the features. This is one of the fundamental marketing mistakes that people still make, and they make it a great deal.
If I want to buy a new Hi-Fi and the salespeople start telling me about how many decibel levels are coming out of the woofer and the speaker, and that it took 19 hours to make in Taiwan, then, unless I’m a complete Hi-Fi geek, I really couldn’t care less. They’re just listing me the features, not the benefits. The benefits are that this is going to look lovely in my home. It’s going to produce amazing sound. I’m going to listen to stuff, and it’s going to feel like I’m in a concert venue where it’s taking place.
You need to know what is important to your customer. Some people will buy a Hi-Fi because it will impress the neighbours. If that’s your customer’s thing, you need to hammer home on that. You want to sell benefits and not features.
If you’re selling hammers, you’re not selling a hammer or even the hole in the wall; you’re selling the ability to put an amazing picture, photo, or painting on the wall and give that person a wonderful experience every time they look at it. You need to apply this. Look at all your marketing, particularly things like the home page of your website. You need to start telling your customers about the benefits within the first one or two sentences.
When you talk to business owners, one of the things that always happens is they stop doing the stuff they did at the beginning that was really successful for them. It’s sort of understandable because you end up busy doing 101 other things. Sometimes it can be so easy to radically change what’s going on in the business.
In the early days of a business, most business owners have to sell their wares wherever they can. You want to be out there interacting and networking with fellow human beings as much as you can. It is one of the most obvious but underused ways to get more customers.
This is going to depend on what you sell. If you sell to consumers, where are the consumers? Where can you hang out with them? If you sell to businesses, where can you hang out at business breakfasts or whatever it might be? Do things really well when it comes to networking or mixing.
The internet is wonderful. We tend to think we can achieve all this online. Obviously, we now have social networking sites. Many people will say Facebook is the equivalent of traditional networking, but it’s not. That’s complete nonsense when it comes to owning a business because you do not have the influence you would have over another human being when you are looking at them face- to-face and networking with them.
I’ve already covered a bit on advertising and spending money on advertising, and it’s well worth you doing that. But before we go spending a fortune on advertising, how about getting advertising for free in the form of free PR, or public relations. It’s a great open book sitting there for business owners.
There’s a core principle for you to understand about PR. Everybody thinks it’s difficult to get into the media, but actually the opposite is the case. I used to work in media. I used to work in radio, so I know exactly how it works.
In any newspaper or magazine or on any radio or TV station, there are producers or journalists almost pulling their hair out because they have to fill hours of radio or TV time or pages in newspapers and magazines. They have to fill it with interesting people and interviews, and that’s hard to find.
For example, when you’re looking to fill a radio show that has some speech content on it, not only have you got to find a subject that’s interesting and somebody who knows what they’re talking about, but that person has to be able to communicate and be somewhat eloquent.
There are things you know about; either the type of business you’re in, the product you sell, or the arena you work in that segments of the population out there are also interested in. Providing you’re able to meet the needs of the producer or journalist on the other end, you will find they are far more receptive than you might think to giving you PR coverage.
33. Premium Pricing
Everybody tends to assume that putting your prices up or selling more expensive stuff can have a detrimental effect on your ability to get more customers. That’s not always the case. There is a segment of the population reluctant to spend money on products or services that appear too cheap. This applies more to the wealthier and affluent buyer.
Regardless of what you’re selling, you will find that a very interesting approach which very few people use, is to target your customers accurately, so you need to know who your customers are. For those who have the ability and any sign of willingness to pay for more expensive products and services, make sure you have a premium-priced version to sell to these people.
By premium pricing, I mean a more expensive and more high-end version. If you sell shoes, and your average shoe is £50, make sure you have a £500 or £600 option in there. You won’t lose anything because if you keep the lower- priced option, you’ll keep the customers you get that way. The addition of a premium-priced option can actually bring you in new and more customers who you would not have reached in the first place.
If I’m looking for a product or service or someone to help me with a certain area in my business, I’m going to think twice if it’s too cheap. Suppose I want the world’s greatest search engine optimiser to work on my business. If I hear recommendations, and finally find somebody who
tells me their rate is $10 an hour, I will question whether they’re good enough to do what I want doing because shouldn’t they be charging more than that?
The whole area of pricing is fascinating because when you set your prices higher and move to a more high-end business, it helps convey a completely new level of doing business. Premium pricing can be a customer acquisition strategy, and very few people
34. Payment Plans
If you are able and willing to give your customers the option to pay in monthly instalments, you will normally see an increase in sales in at least the 20 to 40 per cent range. If you normally have a one-off payment and you let customers pay over two or three months, that will normally give you a significant increase in sales, depending on where you are priced at the moment. If you sell particularly high-end expensive products or services, you can extend that to even longer.
Just splitting a payment into two or three changes the perception because the customer will be very focused on that monthly payment amount, rather than the total amount. Making higher priced products and services more affordable, without reducing your costs is a very effective strategy.
35. Radio Advertising
Radio advertising can be a great part of the marketing mix, particularly for a growing business and particularly if you have a strong local or regional presence. There are lots of businesses who created themselves off the back of good radio advertising. If you’re a national business, it’s something to test doing nationally.
You need to be careful because it’s easy to spend a lot of money, and you don’t want to do that without getting any return. It’s certainly worth doing low-cost tests on the radio, especially if you are a local or regional business. Local radio reaches a good percentage of the population. If it’s done right and you’re not paying over the odds, it can be a worthwhile strategy.
Going back to one of our earlier points, you may want to get people doing your media buying for you and this applies to radio too. If you buy radio advertising on the rate cards these radio stations try to offer, you’ll be paying far too much money.
Radio advertising is something to test, but please follow our golden rule: You must test and measure all your advertising. Radio advertising, like all marketing, is well worth testing.
Using your contact list is a strategy that’s overlooked. You and the people in your business have a network of people in your phone books or mobile phones, and that is your contact list. Within that contact list, you have people who might become customers or people with access to potential customers.
When I talk about your contact list, I encourage you to look at yourself, your life, and your history, and all the people you’ve ever had contact and good relations with.
One of the things that most successful, wealthy entrepreneurs are very good at is tapping in to the people they know or the people who know the people they know, even if some of those links are tentative. If we have a relationship with somebody or a relationship with somebody through somebody else and we’re asked a favour, most of the time we will do it.
If you’re trying to get access to a certain type of business, a specific person in a business, or certain types of people to reach as customers, take a good strong look at your contact list. There are people you could contact if you needed to, either personally or by phone, email, Facebook, or whatever it is. Ask yourself who in that list could be a customer or potential customer.
The network marketing industry, which I am not a huge fan of, is a big industry that makes a lot of money. It doesn’t always make a lot of money for most of the people in it, but that’s a story for another day. One of the ways they do this is to convince the new member, the new person selling their vitamins, health products, or whatever it may be to tap in to their network of people. In some cases, it works.
We’re going to do all this more advanced marketing and advertising, but isn’t it a bit silly to not first tap into your own existing contact list? Have a think about that and focus on areas or people within that list that you can tap into. Think of colleagues of colleagues or friends of friends. If you know someone whose sister is in that industry, go for it. Being an entrepreneur, you have to push the boat a little bit and sometimes go a little bit beyond your comfort zone. This is important because it doesn’t matter how great your product or service is, if nobody knows about it or buys it, it’s all about getting more customers.
37. Have A Strong Niche
Niching is such a great source of potential new customers. It involves something fundamental about how people buy. People will be more inclined to buy from a company that is more focused on their specific needs.
Suppose you needed heart surgery. You had a choice of two good surgeons. All Surgeon 1 does is the particular heart surgery you need. It’s complicated, but they do it every day. In fact, they’ve done it for the last ten years day in and day out, and they can do it with their eyes closed. Surgeon 2 is an equally good surgeon, maybe an even better surgeon, with an outstanding reputation. Surgeon 2 has a gift that they can do hearts, legs, knees, brains, and anything at all. Every couple of weeks, they’ll do heart surgery, and every now and then they’ll do the type of surgery you need.
Which surgeon would you pick? You’re probably going to pick the first one because they have gone into a niche. So as consumers or buyers, we are more inclined toward that niche.
This is something to start thinking about within your business. It doesn’t mean you have to stop or change what you’re doing necessarily, but you may want to introduce elements of your business that are just for that niche.
Financial advisors can advise on mortgages or insurance, and maybe they work on helping business owners get loans. They have that skill and ability. If I was doing the marketing for one of those businesses, the first thing I would do is divide them up. I would have them as separate entities, possibly with separate names and certainly with separate websites.
If you are looking for insurance as a business owner, the website you end up at is a website just about insurance for business owners. It’s not also about mortgages and this, that, and the other. There’s no great logical reason to that because there’s no reason somebody can’t multitask, but we’re just more comfortable. Your sales will increase if you target a niche.
If you fix cars for a living, and you move into a new city where you set up a garage fixing cars, one of your challenges is you’re the new person, and there are 27 other garages in town. Why on Earth should they come to you? If you’re willing to be the person who focuses on just fixing BMWs and you set up a BMW-fixing garage, you narrow your market, but it makes the sales message to that customer so much easier. It also makes the customer easy to find. All you have to do is market to BMW owners, and you can get mailing lists of BMW owners.
How could you niche in your business? How you do this is up to you, but it makes the marketing a lot easier if you can just go for specific people and reach certain people within that arena. Niching is an effective strategy for customer acquisition.
38. Remarketing With Facebook Pixel
Remarketing is proving one of the most effective and powerful internet marketing methods for attracting more customers into your business. When somebody visits your web page but doesn’t buy from you or give you any contact details, until now you’ve had no way of following up with them. If they’re one of the 99 per cent of website visitors who go to a site and just move on without buying, normally we’ve lost them and can’t follow up with them.
Remarketing solves that problem. When somebody comes to your website, a cookie is placed on their computer. Then remarketing banner ads, banner advertising, is served up to that person for days, weeks, or months ahead. On Google, you can do it up to a year and a half after they’ve visited your website.
You can do remarketing at a very advanced and sophisticated level and it is worth studying remarketing in detail. On a very basic level, you can do this in your Google Ads account. You just set up a separate campaign using their remarketing system. If you haven’t got my programmes on remarketing, you can just search within Google. There are some help videos that show you how to do set it up.
It’s very simple. You or your web person puts a little bit of code on your web page and from then on, you will be able to serve up banner and display ads to those same people. What we’re doing here is stacking the deck in our favour. We’re piling on various methods on top of each other to increase your ability to attract new customers. Remarketing is a very effective way of compounding your marketing efforts.
39. Bundling Products
You can bundle the products you offer together to create packages, to increase sales. If I owned a camera shop selling digital camera stuff, I could measure how many people buy from me. Maybe one out of ten spends on average £70 or £80 on a camera. I could try not changing anything that’s already working, but additionally have a bundled option. If they want, they could get the camera in a bundle, with a tripod and a lovely full colour book with 101 photography tips for just £99.
Bundling works because it greatly increases the perceived value. Suddenly, I’m not just getting a camera. I’m getting the camera, the tripod, and the book. Combined, that has a reasonably good perceived value for only £10 or £20 more than the customer was paying for the camera.
If you do this properly, it’s not going to cost you much more. You may not even make additional profits per sale. In other words, you might give them the tripod and the book at cost price, but what if that gets two people out of ten instead of one person out of ten who come into the shop to buy from you?
Consider how you can bundle. You can do this with services too, we’re not just talking about physical products. When a free service warranty is added onto a product, that is a form of bundling. When postage, packing, and shipping is added on free to a product, that is a form of bundling.
Have a look at that. That shift in the perception of that first product can really make a difference to your sales so it’s well worth
40. Having A Core Product
Most successful photography businesses have one, two, or maybe three main products that new customers buy. In a lot of businesses, there’s one thing you sell at one level, and that’s what you do.
When one product is selling well, then that is the time that you put the price of that product up.
Consumers and a photographer’s mindset will respond easily to small, price increases.
You can add to the products that you offer a bigger, more expensive one. That can be very interesting to do because sometimes you can get an increase in price without losing your sales rate, which is great because it’s giving you more money immediately. Reshaping your core product by giving extra perceived value like including the digital files, is a good way to get increase sales.
41. Become A Leader
As you go through these strategies, there are a couple of things that will make a difference to all of them working well.
When you use direct mail, do something online, or have online video, there are certain layers you can add that will help each of them improve significantly. One of them is the extent to which you or your business is regarded as an authority in the marketplace. You want to claim the leadership position because in any type of business or arena, there is a leader.
If I say “fizzy cola drink,” you probably think Coca- Cola. If you’re in Britain and I say “a really famous hypnotist,” you probably think of Paul McKenna. There are other cola drinks out there, and there are thousands of hypnotists, but Paul McKenna and Coca-Cola have established themselves in the leadership position.
I mention Paul specifically because I know him. We worked together on a radio station a long time ago before I was doing this and before he was doing what he now does. I know for a fact that he decided to establish that leadership position and started pushing himself forward as a leader in that field before he’d done all the things that would naturally have him labelled as a leader. He understood either intuitively or he learned that if you wait for somebody to label you as leader, often you will have a very long wait.
Some of our members and customers have done very well. When I go to their websites, I smile because I see the phrase “Britain’s leading wedding photographer” or “Europe’s leading manufacturer of screwdrivers” or “America’s leading real estate,” whatever it may be. They’ve claimed that leadership position.
If you’re willing to be bold – and you do need to have a bit of boldness as an entrepreneur – you want to claim that. Someone is going to claim it in your industry if they haven’t already. Why not you? That will have a direct impact on attracting customers.
You must back that up, but I’m giving you all the strategies here to do it. For example, your use of online video can back up your leadership position because you’re online as an expert and an authority. Getting PR coverage and appearing on your local radio station is going to back up your leadership position.
Hopefully one of the things you’re seeing here is the sum of these is much greater than the parts. Any one, two, three, or ten of these strategies are great. If you start doing them all, they have a huge knock-on effect for your business.
42. Action and Implementation
This is the foundation on which everything is built. Hopefully, you understand that you have more than enough strategies now to get as many customers as you want. Why wouldn’t you go out there and get them? The only reason that you would not succeed at this, is by not acting and not obsessing about implementation.
If you’re smart enough and determined enough to still be reading this far, please don’t let yourself down by not taking action, by not implementing these marketing strategies in your business. This is all about implementation. You don’t have to be a great or experienced marketer; you just need to be willing to take action, and more action than anybody else.
Remember the importance of this subject here. You’re not actually here because all you want is more customers. You’re not even really here because all you want is more customers to help the company grow.
The truth of the matter is you’re a business owner. As a business owner, everything financially in your life, the financial wellbeing of yourself and maybe your family, and the property you own, all depends on your ability to get customers.
I hope you’re inspired and excited at the opportunity here. Please do something with that excitement and inspiration. Take action.
If I was to say to you before today, “What business are you in?” or you came to a seminar and asked everybody in the room one by one, “What business are you in?” you’d probably get 200 different answers from the 200 different people in the room. “I’m in the wedding industry”, “I’m in the portrait business”, “I’m an image consultant.” But that’s not the real business that you’re in.
The real business you’re in is marketing. The real business you’re in as an entrepreneur is getting customers. Unfortunately, we take for granted the quality of the product or service we provide. Obviously, that needs to be in place, but that’s like getting up in the morning. It has to happen anyway. That’s not the real business you’re in, or what will determine your success or failure, or the level of success you experience. The thing that will determine your success is how many customers you get, and the thing that’s going to determine how many customers you get is your marketing.
Start every day focusing on your marketing. This is where you should spend most of your valuable time. I would reinforce the message that the amount of time you are willing to spend on marketing is a vital part of your success because that’s the business you’re in.
Your photography business is a moving thing. You must make changes constantly, either to create better processes, more creative photography, fine tune your selling or implement new techniques or strategies into your marketing.
As a photography business owner, the biggest problem you face is getting customers. Once you solve the ‘getting customers’ problem, you are guaranteed the financial freedom that led to you starting your business in the first place. In my book “Success Secrets Of A Professional Photographer”, I share the big moments in his life, and also sets out some strong strategies to help photographers grow their business.
BIO BERNIE GRIFFITHS
Born in England and started as a professional photographer at just 16 years of age working for the local newspaper and photographing his first wedding.
Worked for a Cruise line photographing passengers while travelling around the world. Staff of 3 photographers.
Emigrated to Australia and opened a studio within 6 months.
Announced a Winner of the World’s Ten Outstanding Photography Professional Awards (WTOPP) for photography business coaching. The Award recognized Bernie’s contribution to the photography industry, as a photographer and as a worldwide photography business coach
Spoken at Australian Institute of Professional Photography 3 day event and various other one day events.
Conducted many seminars on photography and business around Australia, New Zealand and US.
Regularly featured in the AIPP newsletter.
Books on Amazon “Success Secrets of a Professional Photographer” and
“Quantum Leap My Life.”
Over 10 years of photography business coaching.
Coached and mentored hundreds of photographers around the world.
Conducted over 4,000 one hour Zoom coaching sessions with photographers.
Global Influences on the photography industry
Created a unique “Soft Sell Portrait System” for portrait photographers that produces solid, predictable and consistent selling systems that has proven effective to maximize sales at all photography experience levels.
Developed an “Album Planning System” that totally changed the way wedding photographers did their wedding album sales, creating thousands of dollars in revenue.
Structured “Bernie Style Facebook Ads“ that went viral and is being used by photographers around the world.
Founded Advanced Success for Wedding and Portrait Photography to facilitate seminars for photographers and educate.
Over 40 years of owning three successful wedding/portrait photography studios, with a yearly turnover of almost a million dollars.
Special guest on Photobizx (6 times), The Profitable Photographer, Beginner Photography twice), Pro Photographer Journey (4 times), Six Figure Photography Photoprofit, and So You Want To Be A Photographer.
Raised over f$150,000 for various charities through his initiative National Family Portrait Month, which is in its sixth year.
BERNIE EDUCATES, COACHES AND MENTORS PHOTOGRAPHERS THROUGHOUT THE WORLD, VIA ZOOM AND PERSONAL VISITS, TO HELP GROW THEIR BUSINESSES AND CREATE FOR THEM A BETTER LIFE.