Let your visitors do your marketing for you
Have you tried letting your visitors do your marketing for you?
The 'normal' ways to do this is through word of mouth recommendations. I'm suggesting going a step further with four different ways to encourage your visitors to help promote your business - without being pushy.
First of all, you can encourage word of mouth recommendations through social media, simply by suggesting people follow you or asking happy customers to post photos of their visit.
The second way is to think about offering some kind of loyalty voucher or incentive to encourage visitors to return or recommend you to others.
I've talked about the third way of getting your visitors to do your marketing for you in a previous blog - deliberately using a talk trigger, something that gets people to spread the word.
The final way is a little different. Few people do it, yet it's incredibly powerful.
Get your visitors to write your website for you. Without them realising.
When you write about your business - whether in an email or on your website - you do so from your perspective. But visitors see your business from the outside-in. They may view it differently. Their favourite bits of your business might not be the ones you expect.
If you can write more from the perspective of a customer, you may be able to convince future customers more easily.
There's a simple and incredibly effective way to do this.
Take a look at the best reviews for your business and compare them with what you say on your own website.
You'll almost certainly see that some visitors really praise aspects of the experience that you barely mention.
I just looked at the website for an outdoor activity provider, and compared it with their reviews.
On their website the activity provider talked about the range of activities they offer, their qualifications and their location. In the reviews one thing really stood out: many happy customers talked about the way they felt nurtured, how their confidence had increased doing the various activities thanks to the very patient instructors.
Another example - a bed and breakfast business. The owners talk about the Georgian architecture of their home, the soft furnishings, choice of rooms and location. Yet the stand-out factor in almost all their reviews is the breakfast, where guests rave about the quality, the choice, the size, and above all the 'best sausages we've ever tasted'.
What can you do? It's easy...
Just pick out the words and phrases that visitors use in your reviews that really praise what you do.
Use those same expressions within the description of your business.
For example, instead of just mentioning their qualifications the activity providers in the example above can write things like "our visitors tell us they love how our patient instructors helped them to feel safe and build their confidence. We love using our experience to nurture things they never thought they could do".
The bed and breakfast business above could say "come and try the breakfasts everyone loves to talk about, including the best sausages you've ever tasted".
Doing this simple activity has many benefits:
- it's authentic, and brings the language you use alive. It will help you sound natural and 'real' - a good way to talk about your business
- it highlights the aspects of your business that visitors love and are interested in
- it will make sure you don't miss anything when you describe your business
- it can help your search engine optimisation as you'll be using the kind of words that visitors use to search for businesses like yours.
Just to be clear, I'm not talking here about simply repeating a testimonial or cutting and pasting a review on to your website - that's a good idea, but this goes a step further. It incorporates the words used by visitors about their favourite aspects of your business, bang slap middle of your marketing. Just like a mind-reader. Without the effort.