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How to Cet You r Customer

Eva ngel ists to Sel I for You ByTed lanusz

Mary KayAsh,thefounder of Mary KayCosmetics, said After dinner, askyour Advisory Council some quest: ,
that she belreved that everybody she met had an invisible lrke, "l'd liketo giveyou a sneak peek at some new p,-
sign on their forehead that said, "Make me feel impor ucts and services we are thinking about roJling out
tant "And makingthem feel important was one of the key doyou think?"or "This rs our new bus ness plan for -=
factors to her success. year What advice would you give us?"

lf you think about it, her entire business mode was based
on making other people feel important. Her best sa es-
s?) :
And you know, it really doesn't matter what they
important thing is thatyou madethese people, who s..
people drove around in pink Cadillacs. And by the way it to know everybody in the community, feel important
wasn't.1ust a limited numberof hertop salespeoplewho
drove those Cadrllacs. No, if you achieved a certain goal, Not onlywilJthey be happyto meet other like-minde ,
anybody on the team cou d been seen driving around influential members of the community at the quarte
town in a Cadillac And how did you as a salesperson meeting, they are likely to become lrfetime custome,:
ach eve that goa , by makrngyour customers feel more themselves. (After all, who amongyour competrtors;.:
attractive a nd i m porta ntl treating them so royally?) Best of ail, they likely will b.
unable to contain their enthusiasm around others ab:
Ratherthan you as a sma I business person spending howyou make them feel specia .

your hard-earned money on marketing or advertising,

wouldn't it be great f you cou d getyour customers to
sell foryou? Well, you can ... simpiy by making them feel Once a quarteh take your best cusfumers out
important. to dinner to a foncy restaurant or country
Here are three ways to accomplish that:

Form an Advisory Council

Aftertheir quartery meeting with you, if they overhea,
One of the ideas I like to share with my audiences is for
sor'f eone shopping for products or services thatyou o*.
each of them to form an Advisory Council. Here is how it
they a re lLkely to chime in to the conversatron, beginnir
works: Once a quarter, takeyour best customers out to =
with words ltke, "You know, if that is whatyou are cons
d nner to a fancy restaurant or country club. lt especially -
ering,you really need to see myfriends.They'lltal<e rea
helps if these customers are what best selling author
gooc care olyoul'
Seth Codin ca s "sneezers," people who are most influen-
tial in your community. And we all understand the power of personal recomm€,
dation a nd that word of mouth is the most infl uentia
and effectiveform of marketingyou can get.

And you too can get it, forthe price of dinner and some
drinks, simply by makingyour best customers feel
i m po rta nt.

Farm a Fraternity
We tend to like, trust and buy from peopJe who are like
us; we tend to not like, trust or buy from people whom
we perceive are unlike us. There are plenty of potential
customers in the communitywho are.lust likeyoul Hou.,
doyou know? They share the same interests thatyou dc
urh ch is a great starting point for building a business

So, to what groups do you be ong?

. Chamber of Commerce

Continued on page a.
Continuedfrom page 12

How to Cet Your Customer Evangelists to Se I I fo r Yo u Byred tanusz

. Other business and civic grouPs these benefits by once a month makingtwo future lnsu '
. AlLrmniassociations and PTAs ance clients feel irnportant.
. Fitness centers
. Toastmasters Team Up for Fusion Marketing
.Church groups A customer database is oftentimes the most valuable
. Softballteams asset any small business possesses.
. Klds'baseball, basketball or soccer eagues
Another business may not want to give up or se you a
list of their va ued customers, but you don't need to bu,t'
But be sure to do this right. We've all been to events and
their list.You can simplyteam up with a non competing
encounter people trying to build business re ationships
but com plementa ry busi ness to promote you r prod ucts
tie wrongway. They wa k around the room, movingfrom
pe rson to person, repeatingthe same proc amation,
and services to those customers and share the marketing
ex pe ses.
which is something like, "Hil l'm Joe! lf you ever need your

computer fixed, call mel"while shoving a business card in Exam ples have included :

your hand. . An auto dealer and a car wash owner

. A veterinarian and a pet store owner
"Networking ls not se ing,"warns Pattl DeNucci, author
. A sports bar proprietor and a sporting goods owner
of The lntentronal trtetworker: Attracttng Powe(ul Relation-
. A restaurant owner and the communitytheater
ships, Referrals & Results in Business. "Network ng ls about
One of the best places for the resta u ra nt to advertise
relationships. lt's about conversattons. lt's about getting
o r offer a cou po n wa s in the p rogra nr for the th eate r
to know people as people."
. A hair salon and a clothing boutique
When I was presenting to a group of CPAs, one attendee
For the ast example, the hair salon had a displayforthe
told me that every partner in the f rm was required to.loin
cLothing boutique;the clothing boutique had a displayfor
one of these affinity groups, any Sroup of their choice. The
CPAsfound that instead of advertisingto a community,
the hair salon. The on y real cost was the time it took for
the two owner-s to get together to devise the drsplaysl
once they got to know the members of the group, lt was
a far easier and more effective wayto market. And, of
Further, the other business person can become an
course, onceyou satisfy a few members of the group, the
evange istforyour business, andyou can dothe samefor
word will easi y be spread by these evangelists through
out the rest of the group like a wild fire.
ln fact,.lim Kel y, the former CEO of UPS said, "The old
An interesting side note: my insurance agent sponsors
adage'lf you can't beat'em,loin 'em'is being replaced
an "athlete of the month" at the local high school. He '.loln 'em and you can't be beat "'
regu arly runs an advertisement featuring a prominent
male and female athlete in the community paper. Not Ted ,tanusz, MBA, has been honored to contribute artrcles to all
onlywillthose ath etes clip outthe ad (Who cuts out and nine annual PIA Agency Marketrng Cuides and has conducted
saves the advertisements of insurance agents with the multiple webrnarsfor PIA on marketing. Because Baby Boom
agent's name, agency ogo and contact irrformation?), ers learn about and use social media differentlyfrom other
g e n e rat i o n s, Te d co n d u ct s h i s wo r ks h o ps fo r i n s u ra n ce a g e nts
they will also send copies of the ad to their family and
and insurance companies who want to use soctal medta to
friends. This marketing activity also allows my agent
y:roduce a bottom line rmpact for their agencies and compa
to get to know the schoo administrators, coaches and
n,e>. teOrn mOre At
parents-who also need to buy insurance. He gets a1 of

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