Most business owners have heard the term “The Gold is in the List” or some version of that “happy” phrase. And it is true. Lists are what millions are made from. Lists help build fortunes, help build communities and more.
And building your list to market your small business offline is not that difficult. After all, companies have been using mailing lists since long before the advent of the Internet. In this day and age there is no reason for that to change, when in fact there is still a benefit to sending things via snail mail – especially since most companies are NOT doing that these days.
Building a contact list is something that every company should be doing. With the right contacts it is possible to reach a market and share information with them in a way that lets them know you are serious about building a relationship and keeping it.
Here are just a few ways to build your mailing list to market yoru small business offline:
If you sell a product or service that requires someone to receive a receipt, include a comments slip with every purchase. Feedback will not only help build those relationships it can help build your database or list. When the customer fills it in and sends it back, you have their contact information.
Every time someone makes a purchase you have the opportunity to build your list. Collect the necessary data to stay in touch with them. This makes it easy to send them information about additional services and products that they might be interested in, and clue them in on special offers. You can do this by sending a flyer, or by writing a more personal letter which speaks directly to the customer as a person. In doing this, you retain an element of trust and straight-talking which can persuade a lot of people to do business with you.
Host a seminar or event and gather contact information on all interested parties as well as those who register. Offer some sort of premium to encourage people to leave their valuable information.
When you meet a potential client or customer, exchange contact information on the spot. That way you can follow up with the person and “add her or him to your list.”
Point of Purchase: Simply place a sign up form at the cash register, and make sure your sales team knows to ask customers to provide their name and email address when checking out with their purchase.
Trade shows are another exceptional way to grow your list. But the only challenge here is that so often the “list” is not of real candidates. Strategize a way to filter out those “tire-kickers” from real prospects and gather their information to add to your list.
When people call your business line to get more information, everyone responsible for answering the phone should let the caller know about your product offers, and company news. Ask for their information so you can follow up with them when you are running specials. And then do it!
Capturing contact information of potential customers and clients offline is another great way to build your list. After all you need that list to continue to spread the word about your company. Remember, the “GOLD” is in the list!