One of the more colorful moments during a recent small business marketing presentation came when someone mentioned their biggest challenge was that people didn’t seem to know all they offered. It seemed everyone could relate. It didn’t help later when I asked if anyone in the room sold life insurance and my friend, who I knew sold home and auto insurance, very exasperatedly said “Well, duh!”
Even though you spend all day, every day, dealing with the minutia of all the things your business can do, most fail to let their prospects and customers know about what they can do. In short, you’re leaving money on the table. Prospects and customers are going elsewhere because they do not know what they can get from you.
If you’re not sure if this applies to you, start listening to your customers. Are you hearing them say anything that sounds like, “I didn’t know you did that.” When prospects and customers are surprised to hear you offer something they didn’t expect you to offer, this applies to you.
Of course you make sure prospects know where to find you, your hours, what great customer service you offer and this month’s specials, but do you really lay it out there for them to see. Apparently most do not.
When considering all the options to remedy this situation, the simplest is to simply start mentioning your offerings in your customer and prospect messaging. Email signatures, newsletters, advertising, signage and even invoices can be used to provide “Did you know we also offer …” messages. But be wise when doing this. Don’t pile everything on at once. Mention each of your less-known offerings one-at-a-time. Let them stand on their own. This will give them the greatest chance to be recognized by their best prospects.
A more effective method is likely to come from your sales force. They should be making prospects and customers aware of additional offerings when prospecting and doing post-sale follow ups. This is especially effective after you’ve earned their trust with your primary offering.
It will take getting the word out *repeatedly* in emails, newsletters, advertising, signage, etc. and then making sure your direct sales efforts include cross-selling everything you do when appropriate. This won’t be an overnight fix. And it will require ongoing support and emphasis from management.
So remember, just because you spend every waking hour dealing with all that comes with what you do, it doesn’t mean anyone else knows what you do. You still have to tell them.
About Joe Beaulaurier
Joe Beaulaurier founded Whatcom Marketing in Washington State and has decades of previous experience in sales and marketing, most notably as marketing manager at PRWeb.