Word-of-mouth advertising is the most effective and affordable way to get new business (92% of consumers believe a recommendation from a friend or family over any other type of advertising).
Here are a few ways to get people talking about your business and sending new clients your way.
- Make your customer service so memorable that people are compelled to tell others (for example, send handwritten thank-you notes or give small gifts on clients’ birthdays).
- Add a line at the end of your e-newsletters encouraging readers to forward to their friends.
- Create a referral program to motivate customers to send new business your way.
- Create a company page on LinkedIn and share valuable content your target audience will want to read and share.
- Send press releases about your company’s newest products or latest achievements to trade magazines.
- If you’re quoted or featured in a news story, share it on your website, push it out on social media, and include it in your e-newsletter.
- Attend industry events to build your network of referral partners. Make sure you spend time talking to people and learning about their businesses; networking is a two-way street.
- Speak at conferences, networking events, or even the local library. Hand out business cards and encourage attendees to share your contact information with anyone who may need your services.
- Ask current customers for testimonials you can add to your website.
- Refer business you can’t handle (whether you’re too busy or it falls outside of your scope) to other businesses, and they’ll be more likely to return the favor.
- Run a highly targeted Facebook ad focused on influencers in your niche.
- Join LinkedIn, Facebook, and Google+ groups where your customers spend time. Contribute to the conversations and provide helpful information (not promotional content).