The Miracle On 34th Street: Business, And Marketing Success Online
I'm sure most of you have seen at one point in your lives, the movie "Miracle on 34th Street". Do you recall the scene where the Macy's Santa Claus tells one of the children that he should go to Gimbals' department store because they had exactly what the child wanted? The Owner of Macy's was furious at the Santa for sending a customer to the competition, but as we all know, in the end, the Santa's actions created a wealth of goodwill for Macy's.
Now you're probably asking yourself what in the world does this have to do with marketing online. Well, it has a LOT to do with it.
With virtually every marketing site filled with so much hype, and pure garbage to outright lies and scams, people don't know what to believe anymore.
Let me tell you one of those so called 'secrets' to marketing that really isn't anything new, but is used by so few people. When I tell you what it is you'll probably think I'm crazy but I'm going to tell you exactly how it can turn your business around in a short period of time.
The secret? "Honesty" Now what do I mean? Let me first give you a real world example. A few weeks ago I received a call from a potential client ready and willing to spend several thousand dollars on a search engine optimization project. This person has a legitimate health oriented product that can sell very well. I needed some background so in the course of the conversation I discovered that this individual had already paid another company over $1000 for search engine optimization but he was unhappy with the results. The potential client was very unfamiliar with how SEO works, and was not really sure what he had spent his money on.
I did a little research and lo and behold, when I entered his main keyword into a major search engine, he had a page 1 #1 ranking for his MOST IMPORTANT term. Now it doesn't get any better than this.
Now here's where the connection to the movie comes in. Are you willing to tell a potential customer that
1) The company that they hired did a good job for them
2) You can't improve on what they did because nothing is better than a #1 position, (assuming you were in the same line of work as me)
3) That they should save their money
Or are you so desperate that you will make up any story to get the big $$$ deals from a potential client who is not really sure of the entire process. Are you willing to be the Macy's Santa Claus who will send a customer somewhere else if they can do it better than you can? Or are you only driven by the money you can make.
But here's another little secret. Honesty will in the long run, pay far more than trying to make that one time quick sale. You see, virtually all of my customers now come from word of mouth referrals, and in many cases from people who I sent elsewhere or told that they didn't need to spend any more money. One of these customers I turned away has sent me 6 clients this year. That is a lot of money. And I wouldn't have received any referrals if I just would have taken the potential customers money for something they didn't need and you know why? Because people are smart. They may not know at first that you are just trying to make a quick sale, but they will when they see the results. Never EVER take a job unless you feel you can deliver what you promise, or greatly improve upon what the client already has established.
Be honest with the client, You'll find that building this type of relationship with a potential customer who pays you nothing, can have tremendous benefits. They WILL send people to you because they trust you, and in the world of online marketing, trust is not something most businesses have achieved.
Your customer base is FAR more than just those who give you money, it includes anyone and everyone who calls you, or contacts you in any way with any type of question about your products or services. While most will not buy from you, how you talk and treat that person could go a long way to that person recommending you to someone else who WILL pay.
It's all about credibility. It's so easy to know who will be the winners and who will be the losers from answering a few simple questions.
1) Do you answer your customers email inquiries promptly? At the very minimum the same day and even better, within minutes to a few hours? If you do, you are going to be a winner.
2) Or do you let your customer's email sit around unanswered for days at a time? If you do, you will be a loser.
3) Do you give contact information on your web site, including an address where they can contact you? If you do you will be a winner. Don't want to put your home address on the site? Fine. Get a P.O. box, They cost $40 per year.
4) Or do you make yourself completely anonymous, no name, nothing about who you are? If you do you will be a loser.
5) Do you have a phone number where you can be reached, posted on your website? If you do you will be a winner, a toll free number and you get even more points! Don't want to use your home phone? Fine get a second line for $15 per month with limited outgoing calls. It's less than $200 per year.
6) Not having a phone number is not always fatal if, and this is a BIG "IF", you have done all the other things correctly. Having an immediate way to let customers get in touch with you, even in the internet age, still can't be beat and a phone call is still the fastest way to resolve a problem.
Now, only you know if your marketing efforts are paying off. If they're not ask your self how many of the things above are you doing. Honesty is more than just telling the truth to a potential customer, it's also believing in your product. How many of you are running ads for something that you know in your heart, is at best, stretching the truth, that your great product is not going to make someone $10,000 a month like the ads say. Are you making $10,000 a month like your ads say? This is all part of becoming successful, you can't build long term success based on a lie or false or misleading information. It just won't work. Your reputation alone can bring in more business than you could ever want, and it's something you are in total control over.
It all comes back to being the Macy's Santa Claus. Be honest. If someone can do what the client needs better than you, tell them. If they really don't need to spend a lot of money with you, tell them. In the end, the reputation you build will be worth far more than any one sale.
About the Author: This article provided courtesy of www.marketingtips4u.net