Once you’ve launched your business and built up some loyal customers, sustainability and expansion will be the next things on the agenda. How do you maintain and grow your client base? While marketing your business is crucial to bring in more leads, we look at the non-marketing ways you can win more customers.
1. Define your process
Having a clear and transparent process that you can easily communicate will give your prospective clients an understanding of how the work will be executed, from start to finish. They will feel much more comfortable in their investment because they will have insight into the work you will be doing, how it will be done and what the final result will look like.
A great way to communicate a process is to create an acronym that summarises each of its stages. For example, as a Health & Safety Consultant, you might implement a process like this:
The S.A.F.E.R Process
S - Specific safety goals of organisation are identified
A - Assessment of the current environment
F - Finding and presenting of solutions
E - Engagement of staff in the implementation of solutions
R - Reviewing and reporting on results to ensure success.
This memorable acronym is an example of taking someone on the journey they will experience if they invest in your services.
2. Customise your proposals
You might be used to sending out proposals that consist of a breakdown of each stage of a project, what the deliverables are and the cost. You may also include a spiel on your business and what makes you good at what you do.
While this is all relevant and important information to include in a proposal, it puts the emphasis on cost rather than value. In contrast, providing a proposal that demonstrates your understanding of the client’s needs, how you intend to solve their problems, and the experience you have to do so, will refocus their attention back to the value you offer, rather than just the numbers.
Of course, it’s still crucial to include a detailed breakdown of cost to keep things transparent.
3. Deliver above and beyond
We all know that feeling of relief and satisfaction when our problems are not just solved, but we have our expectations exceeded. It’s that feeling of getting something delivered earlier than expected, or walking away feeling you got more than you paid for.
Find unique ways to delight your clients and turn them into advocates for your business. They will then be more than happy to provide you with testimonials, case studies and the all-important referrals!
4. Nail down your business plan
You can’t have a destination without a roadmap. So in the same way, you can’t have the goal of growing your business without a plan of how you are going to achieve this. Small businesses and consulting professionals often have a long term goal in mind but don’t take the time to adequately plan for it. They also tend to focus on the immediate; the bread and butter of any business being the servicing of customers and the generating of new leads.
By taking the time to create a solid business plan, you’ll better understand who your target market is, how to reach them and what makes your services special.
5. Automate where possible
Streamlining your processes will make it easier for you to meet and exceed your clients’ needs and deliver that amazing quality service you want to be known for. This is where technology can be life-changing! There are so many different ways to automate processes that would normally steal your time and efforts. You can communicate easily with your client base through e-newsletters, you can maintain a social media presence efficiently by scheduling posts, or you can generate and send invoices instantly. These are just a few examples, but there are a host of different automation tools that will save you time, effort and money.
By doing these 5 non-marketing things, plus some marketing activity, your business will be on the right path to grow and be as successful as you want it to be.
If you're a Health & Safety consultant looking to further your business, check out the Vault Partner Program for a host of benefits to help you take your business to the next level!