Here are 10 simple methods to get new customers for Small business.
If you have a small business, then you know that the biggest struggle is getting new clients for that. To expand your small business, you need to constantly keep getting new customers, which is very difficult, especially in today’s highly competitive environment.
However, there are some simple things that you can do to attract more customers. These are time-tested things that work like a powerful magnet to get more customers for business.
How to Get New Customers for Small Business
These tricks to get new customers involve both online activities as well as offline activities. Both areas are important because your new potential clients can be basically anywhere and you need to ensure that you don’t leave any stone unturned.
Also, if you are not able to do all these by yourself, there are things that you can outsource at a small price, which frees up time for you to explore other avenues of getting new customers (especially the ones where you need to be personally present, like trade shows).
Here we go.
1. Revamp Your Website to Get more customers
A lot of small businesses think that having a good website is not something that they can afford to do, or should focus on. On the contrary, not only should you have a website, you should have a great looking website that is always updated. This is because a website is your permanent salesman that is working for you 24*7. It needs just a small money and time and then it keeps working for you in the background. More importantly, as your competitors might not be doing a good job at managing their website, this gives an advantage to you.
If you already have a website, there are things that you can do to get more customers from website. These things ensure that there is a better chance of conversion of the people who are already visiting your website. Again, this gives you an advantage over your competitors. Something as simple as removing “Not Secure” error can help you get more customers from website.
In addition to converting existing website visitors better, you also need to try to get more people to your website. There are a lot of ways to do that, some of which are covered in the points below, but we will probably come up with an entire post around this topic.
As we mentioned earlier, there are some areas that you can outsource, and website management is definitely a good candidate for that. For a small monthly cost, our website management company can completely manage your website, while you focus on other areas mentioned below.
2. Visit Trade Fairs and Conferences to Get New Customers
A very good method to connect with new potential customers for your small business is by visiting all the trade fairs and conferences that happen in your area. You can see listings of trade fairs here and here.
A simple fact is that a trade show or conference is a gathering of businesses who are looking to sell services or looking to buy services themselves. So, they are ready to be pitched.
More importantly, you get to pitch multiple businesses together at one place. This is an opportunity you do not get often, as you have to spend time in finding potential customers, then try to set up a meeting, and so on. On the contrary, you can do multiple meetings in the same day in a Trade show.
Make sure you talk to as many people as you can and keep passing on your business card as well as collect business cards of others. They would give you an easy follow up option after the Trade show (and make sure you do follow up).
And if you somehow manage to become a speaker yourself at a conference, then it will become even easier to get new customers, as the attendees would directly approach you to provide your services to them (recently we got a pretty big client exactly with this approach).
3. Referrals from Friends and Family to Get New Customers
All of us have friends and family. And they further have friends. So, the network that we have access to is pretty big.
When we start trying to get new customers for small business, the first thing we need to do is tap into this network.
Reach out to all the family members and friends and tell them about your business. Then, explicitly ask them for referrals, as there is a probability they know someone who needs what you are selling.
One thing that comes very handy is give them some sort of information card about your business that they can share with others. It could be in form of a WhatsApp graphic that describes your business and also provides your contact information (you can make that easily with free tool like Canva). Then, your friends and family can just forward it to their network so that the same information reaches a much larger group of people.
Also encourage them to share Facebook posts about your business on their personal timeline. If you have 200 friends on Facebook and they have 200 friends each, and all of your friends end up sharing your post, then your post will reach out to 40,000 people!
So, make sure you tap into this network as actively as you can. More often that not, you will end up getting some new clients for your small business from this.
4. Referrals from Existing Clients
Your existing clients are also a good source for getting new customers for business. This is similar to getting referrals from friends and family, but is also different in a lot of aspects.
- First of all, your clients are already aware of exactly what you provide and they are (hopefully) happy with your service, so they are actually in a better position to pitch you to others.
- Secondly, they would already know other businesses like themselves who can potentially use your services, so you will get more relevant leads.
- Thirdly, and most importantly, it becomes easier for other people to trust those who are already using your small business and are happy with you.
So, make sure you get referrals from your existing clients, by explicitly asking them for it.
Note: Make sure you treat their referrals well, even if you don’t decide to go ahead with them. Any wrong behavior at your end could directly impact your existing client as well.
5. Advertise Yourself On Your Car
This is an often ignored but really easy to implement strategy to get new clients. There are good chances that you have a car and it goes everywhere with you. So, it is like a big billboard that is going all across the city and also to other cities.
How about you advertise yourself on your car?
Sounds a bit strange, but if you think about it, it makes a lot of sense.
Wherever you drive, people will be able to read name of your business as well as your phone number and website name. And there is a possibility you might get a call from a random stranger who saw that advertising.
This works especially well when your car is parked in a high visibility area where a lot of people can see your ad.
Go ahead and get your car converted to your billboard today. Its a small one-time investment that will keep paying for itself over and over.
And if you have multiple cars, even better.
6. Use Social Media to Get New Clients for Small Business
Social Media is an especially powerful medium to get new clients for your small business. There are multiple social media networks and each of them has to be used differently.
Here we are going to talk about how you can use different social networks to get new clients:
- Facebook Groups: Facebook Groups are a very powerful part of Facebook. Start by finding Facebook group that has the type of people you cater to. For example, if your small business is for plumbers, then start by finding groups of plumbers. Join those groups. But don’t start advertising yourself as you might be kicked out. Add posts that provide value. Answer questions to help others. And genuinely establish yourself as someone who has a lot of knowledge. Then people would start getting in touch with you to avail your services. There are many more strategies to properly leverage Facebook groups, but we will leave that to another post.
- Twitter: This is an often ignored network to find new customers, but I personally find it more effective. This is the only social media network in which you can search all tweets for your keywords, hashtags, etc. and get real-time alerts. The tool to use for this is provided by Twitter itself: TweetDeck. In this, you can add multiple columns for your different search criteria and can see the tweets that match those. After that, you can respond to those tweets to get in the conversation.
- LinkedIn: LinkedIn is something everyone know about, but it is not easy to crack. You really need to build a very strong personal profile on LinkedIn in which you share news and updates about the industries you cater to as well as products / services that you provide. In addition to that, you need to follow people who are a good fit for you and then comment on their updates. If done right, LinkedIn can be a treasure trove of new customers for your small business.
- Instagram: Instagram is another good place to find some new customers. Start by identifying hashtags that your potential clients might be using and then follow those. Then, when you see relevant updates on those hashtags, reply to those to get attention.
Apart from the above, other networks like TikTop, SnapChat and Pinterest are also useful to look for new customers.
7. Google My Business
Google My Business or GMB or Google Listing has become a very powerful medium due to the popularity of mobiles. If people are doing searches for things around them, then Google shows results from Google My Business first. Users can directly click on those to call you or reach your website or find directions to your office.
So, apart from having a great website, it also becomes imperative to have a good Google My Business page as well. It is totally free, so there isn’t a reason not to have one.
Google My Business page also needs to be optimized so that it can outrank your competitors. There are many things you can do for that, like, keep it always updated, post regular photos, use keywords, etc.
A good GMB page is your additional source to get new clients for small business.
8. Partner with Complimentary Businesses
You are not the only one looking for new clients for your small business; a lot of other businesses are as well. And some of those businesses might not be your competitors, but would have a similar target customers.
For example, if you provide towing service, then a service station would be one such business.
If you partner with such businesses, then that means that both of you are working together on getting new clients. Not only that, you can partner to offer a packaged service to your customers so that they can avail services of both the businesses at a discounted price. This is win-win for everyone.
So, find the businesses that serve the same customers that you do, talk to them to partner with them, and then start working together to get new customers.
Tip: When you partner with a business, make sure you work honestly in that partnership. A partnership is 2-way street in which both the parties need to benefit. If you just look for your own benefit, the partnership will soon break.
9. Run Ads to Get New Customers for Small Business
All the strategies I mentioned above to get new customers involve spending time, but not money. However, if you have some money to spare, then running ads for your small business can give you instant boost.
Depending on what you are selling, you can go with Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads, Promoting your Google Listing, and LinkedIn Ads.
What type of ad network you decide to go with depends on your business as well as your target audience. Here are a few rules of thumb:
- If you are selling B2B, then Google Ads are the best choice. LinkedIn ads also work well for this.
- If you are selling something that is not an impulse buy (like, a mattress), then again go with Google Ads.
- If you are selling something that visually looks great and people can buy it when they see it, then Instagram and Facebook Ads look great.
10. Attend Parties
Yep, I mean it. And I am not saying that you attend parties to refresh yourself, but to find new customers.
Parties are another place where a lot of people come together. They are not looking to be pitched, but they trust the people who are there.
So, get into conversation with people and just talk to them. Ask them what they do. And when they ask what you do, that will be your opportunity to talk about your business. The more people you talk to, more people will come to know about your business. And there is a possibility that they need your services or they know someone who needs your services.
Our company has ourselves got many clients from such parties. Just make sure you don’t come across as someone who is desperately trying to sell.
Bonus Tips To Get New Customers
We have told you 10 kick ass methods to get more customers for your business. When you are following those strategies, keep the following bonus tips also in mind.
Tip 1: Network, Network, Network
As soon as you decide to start a business, you need to start networking. Network as much as you can. Whatever you do, wherever you go, your focus should be on networking with new people, dropping your business card in their lap, and getting their business card. The more people you network with, the wider your network becomes.
Tip 2: Always Keep Selling
A good salesman is one who is always selling. Never be ashamed of selling. Whenever you get an opportunity, subtly mention your business, and if the conversation moves forward, don’t be afraid to propose to setup a meeting to discuss it further. You really never know when the listener might turn out to be a potential customer.
We found one of our biggest customer via shared cab. Our founder was in a shared Uber cab and he pitched to his co-passenger. A few months down the line, the deal materialized and he is one of our biggest customer now.
Tip 3: Sound Like A Winner
Now, this is very important, if not most important. You always need to sound like a winner when talking to your potential new customers. Even if your business is not doing too good at the moment, you can’t lay out your sob story in front of everyone you come across to.
Instead, you have to sound like a business who is very successful and you don’t have a lot of bandwidth to take up new customers. Remember – People only like to work with winners.
Also, keep dropping success stories in your conversations. So, instead of talking about what you do, talk about what you did for your XYZ customer and how it benefited them.
This is how people will start trusting you that you know what you are doing.
Go ahead and find new customers:
So, now you know all these strategies that can help you attract more customers. Now, start implementing these. Choose some to implement actively, while some to implement passively.
If there is a strategy that has worked for you in the past in getting new customers for your small business, do mention that in comments below.