# 1 and 2 below tend to be best and easiest regardless of the business type. The other methods will vary based on the type and budget of the business.
1) Current Clients – As long as you have provided them with good service, they already know you, trust you, like you, and are happy with what you provide. When there is a new opportunity for them to buy from you again, they likely will.
2) Referrals – People who receive a recommendation from someone they know and trust about a particular product and/or service provider, will be much more open to connecting with the referred provider and to buying from them. – Joining Exclusive Business Referral Groups has been shown to exponentially increase new sales for Solopreneurs and Small Businesses. – GTApreneurs has taken Referral Groups to a whole new level with a Business Coaching and teamwork format for meetings and a unique and exclusive, “Suggestive Referring” mechanism.
3) In-person Networking events – These could be business specific events or social events. The more people you talk with and let them know about what you offer for your business, the more new sales you are likely to get. *Keep in mind that you need to follow-up with the people you meet or they will likely forget about you and your business offerings. This means sending an email or phone calls within 48 hour of meeting them and if they agree, adding them to your email marketing list. GTApreneurs hosts great networking events where you can pitch your business to the group, talk one on one with other entrepreneurs, enjoy food and beverages and have fun.
4) Website with high SEO – Websites are essential for businesses today. A website gives your business legitimacy and shows that you are serious about your business. Having your site rank high in search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo or others, can be very effective at attracting new clients, but, it can be costly. Talk to several Digital Marketing Specialists about how they can help you and their rates before making a decision to pay for SEO (Search Engine Optimization), then evaluate after a few months if it is bringing in the amount of new prospects to create the income you want and compare that to the cost of keeping up a monthly SEO plan.
5) Social Media direct messaging – This can be very effective. I regularly get and send messages on Facebook and LinkedIn. They are great for both telling people what you do and MORE IMPORTANTLY for asking for phone or video appointments where you can get to know each other and your businesses better.
6) Social Media posts – These are good for building your brand. They remind people about what you offer. They can lead to people contacting you about your business. But, don’t rely on them exclusively for your advertising. With so many service providers and so many people promoting their businesses online, just posting and expecting a flood of people to continuously knock at your proverbially door, is not likely to happen, unless you are Apple, McDonald’s or another billion dollar international company who have virtually bottomless pockets and can blast information about their new products both organically and through paid advertising on social media as often as they want to.
7) Cold Calling – This can only be done to business owners without their prior permission. You need to have prior permission before calling people you don’t know to solicit business. If you are a B2B business, an initial phone call coupled with a follow-up email can be effective, but, it takes courage and well prepared scripts to get started. Once you’ve nailed your script and your used to making the calls, this would be a good prospecting method to use at least once a week.
9) Door Knocking – Going door to door, whether it be to residential homes or businesses, this is the most challenging way to get new clients. It takes a lot of courage, pre-knocking practice, time and energy to do; but, it has been shown to be an effective prospecting method for many different businesses like Real Estate Agents, Financial Advisors and others.
8) Paid Ads – These tend to be more effective, I’ve found for product-based businesses than relationship-based businesses, and they can be very expensive.