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Accounting is Just the Beginning

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8 Easy Ways to Collect Prospects Contact Details

In a recent blog I discussed 6 easy ways to collect customer names and addresses but I missed one, a really obvious one, which is to offer guarantees or after care – e.g. this works well for jewellers.

It’s also important to collect the names and contact details of prospective customers, or prospects, so you can work to convert these into customers, since one of the three ways to grow your business is to get more customers or clients, so here are eight easy ways to do so:

1. Seminars/Workshops
Organising seminars or workshops is a fantastic way of capturing prospect’s names and contact details providing you have something interesting to say or focus on the two most motivating factors in life – pain (or fear) or pleasure, especially if you can piggy-back on the customers of another businesses.
Effectiveness rating – 9/10

2. One-to-One Networking
Right now on-line networking is very popular but I find there’s like meeting people for coffee, especially if you can leverage off the person you’re meeting i.e. they have a client base and will refer you to their customers. It’s easy – when you meet people, just ask them out to coffee on you.
Effectiveness rating – 8/10

3. Networking Events
The best networking events are not networking events as such but things like the Home & Garden Show, the Business Expo or other seminars or workshops run by other businesses. Just turn up and talk to other attendees or exhibitors, invite them to coffee or talk about them or their businesses, not you or your business. Excellent because you’re meeting them face-to-face.
Effectiveness rating – 9/10

4. Free Stuff
A great way of capturing people’s contact details is to give them something of low cost to you but of high perceived value to them. If they want what you are offering, you can dictate exactly the information you require. There are loads of examples but it could be a free report, a free sample or free trial. It’s also effective because you can insist on meeting them before they get their free whatever-it-is!
Effectiveness rating – 7/10

5. Local Knowledge
This is harder but can still be useful. If you’re out and about just be aware of local businesses of potential interest to you & get their details – an increasing number of businesses are now displaying their emails addresses. To make this easy, in Hastings drive up the Omahu Road and down the side-roads. In Napier, go to Onekawa. The problem here of course is that you will not have any personal contact so this should be regarded as just the first step in the process of building a relationship. Be careful here of the anti-spam laws here, see http://www.dia.govt.nz/diawebsite.nsf/wpg_URL/Services-Anti-Spam.
Effectiveness rating – 4/10

6. Pop-Ups on websites
These are the most effective way of capturing email addresses on-line, either on entry or exit, and much better than an invitation to subscribe. However, they may be time-wasters, not local to your business and you’re still a long way from getting to know them.
Effectiveness rating – 5/10

7. Contests
Everyone loves them so they are a great way to capture people’s contact details as of course they have to give you their contact details to be notified of their winnings, and cheap too, given the cost of the prize relative to the numbers involved. Again though, there’s unlikely to be much personal contact involved.
Effectiveness rating – 7/10

8. Ask Them!
The most obvious but often overlooked, just ask people who enquire by ‘phone, walk-in who don’t buy or when you quote but they go to the competition. If you ask the right way and explain the benefits (perhaps offer a draw or say they will be notified of special deals or new lines first) your success rate will be high, so why be shy? The odd rejection or two shouldn’t be too depressing as persistence pays off!
Effectiveness rating – 6/10

Our Advice:
I haven’t mentioned buying a database here. That’s because they often are out of date and may put you at a liability risk under the anti-spam legislation. The Department of Internal Affairs is currently taking legal action against several firms who purchased commercial databases, wrongly assuming deemed consent by the firms included on the database. For guidelines, see the DIA website.

If you need help collecting prospects names and addresses or advice on the anti-spam laws call 0800 ASK NICK or contact me by email.