In these days of ever changing technology and lightning fast communications, it is vitally important to stay ahead of your competition for the attention of every single customer.
Face it: No one is getting the bulk of their retail information from the television or the newspaper any longer. They get all of that from their computers and from their mobile phones.
Everyone needs to be able to reach out and connect with their customers whether they are going to shop online or come to a physical location.
In fact, stores that have physical locations might benefit the most from the following tips.
1. Utilize Facebook
If you do not already have a Facebook page for your store, make one. If you do have one, make sure you are encouraging each of your customers to “like” and to “friend” you.
2. Use Google Local
Google Local is a tool that allows you to add the business location and other store information (hours, holiday closing, parking details) as well as allow for additions like special offers, coupons and others all sent to the user’s mobile phone.
3. Use Google Favorite Places
Another great tool from Google, Favorite Places sends the business a window decal with a unique bar code. The customer can scan that bar code with their mobile phone so that they can read reviews, star the business as a favorite in their phone and create lists of various types of places.
4. Email Campaigns: Build a Special Members Only List
Have your customers sign up for the email club but give it a catchy name that suits your business. In return, your customers can all then be entitled to special, members only discounts and drawings for great prizes.
5. Build Your List Further
Not only should you be asking for contact information when a visitor comes to your web site online but when they are coming into your physical location as well. Make sure that you are asking for this information at check out or offer a pretty book in a predominant location for the information to be written in. as much as 30-40% of people will give you this information if they are asked especially if you sweeten the deal a little. Offer a free gift or enter each email into a drawing for a great prize once a month.
6. Check in by Using Facebook Places and Similar Services
When people check in via Facebook Places they give their location by store and city which equal free publicity. Most will not only post the basic information on their own Facebook pages but will usually include a comment or two as well. Reward people who do this by giving them a discount on something special or offer a free gift.
7. Don’t Forget Twitter
You can market to Twitter, having Sweet Tweet sales that are revealed only to your followers. You can tweet that for the next hour you will be offering so much off a select item. The more people who become your followers, the more people will be in the loop for short term, deep discounts and will be likely to come to the store to check out items that might potentially go on sale next.