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Small Business Marketing Tips How to Get Your Customers to Buy Over and Over Again

I'd like to share with you one of the most inspirational success stories I've ever heard.

During the Great Depression of the 1930s, a boy named Joe Girard was born. He had an abusive father and lived in one of Detroit's most deplorable ghettos.

Impoverished and struggling, Joe began shining shoes as a 9-year-old boy just to survive. He remembers nights as a young teenager when he slept in boxcars after bitter arguments with his father.

But through it all, Joe learned important lessons of honesty, integrity, and hard work. And from those humble beginnings, Joe rose to become the world's greatest car salesman. The only salesman to be inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame, after his fifteenth year in business, Joe had singlehandedly sold 13,001 cars--the most ever recorded in history. His secret? No, it wasn't high-pressure techniques or dishonest tactics. After all, the vast majority of his business came from repeat customers--and you don't get repeat customers by treating people badly.

No, Joe had a simple system. After every phone call or personal contact he made, Joe would write down the person's contact information. Then he sent everybody on his list a greeting card every single month. Now, these weren't pushy, salesy mailingsbut positive, kind messages that built long-lasting relationships of trust with everyone he met.

By the time he retired, you had to wait months to get an appointment to buy a new car from him--and he hired two personal assistants JUST to help him send those cards out.

Talk about a return on the investment of a postage stamp!

It's the principle of "constant contact," and it's one of the most effective strategies you can install in your business.

Here are just a few of the rewards you'll reap:

1. Your customers will come to really know and like you. And, of course, we tend to do business with people we know and like. Putting a name and a personality to the products and services they're buying will keep them glued and loyal to you.

2. Your customers will think of you first. This is what I was getting at when I talked about "the only kind of top of mind awareness that matters." When you're staying in touch, you're at the top of their mindsnot the other guy.

3. Your customers will appreciate you. As long as you're providing products, services, and information that really will enhance your customers' quality of life, solve their problems, and meet their goals, they will come to rely on you as a trusted advisor, a never-ending source of solutions! And that's a great place to be!

4. Loyalty will improve. Because of the tremendous value you're offering, people will become loyal to your brand, making it extremely difficult for your competition to make any headway with your customers.

5. Sales will increase. Because you're asking for sales consistently, you'll get more. It's that simple.

6. Referrals will increase. The more satisfied your customers are, the more likely they are to refer. What's more, you set up systems to consistently ask for referralswhich of course will lead to more of them!

7. You'll retain customers longer. Remember this profound truth: "When you stop selling to your customers, they stop being your customers." This single principle is so powerful, I actually recommend you make yourself a sign with those exact words and put it someplace you can see it every day. The better you are at keeping in touch with your customers, the longer you'll retain them.

8. You'll reduce your marketing costs. Remember what we said in our previous chapter about spending at least 50% of your marketing budget on your existing customers? Well, that still stands. As you do, you'll get better response for less money.

9. You'll increase your revenue. Because your overhead will decrease, your revenue will go up!

10. You'll increase the Lifetime Profit Value of your customerswhich will make your business more and more profitable over time.

11. You'll be more attuned to what your customers need and want. This is one of the greatest benefits of staying in constant contact with your customers. When you make it a point to interact with them, they'll let you know what they need. And that will give you the information and power to make your products and services even more valuable.

12. You'll feel good about your business. Knowing that you're making a real difference in the lives of others is one of the greatest thing about being in business for yourself. What kind of an impact you're making is never more apparent than when you've built solid relationships with your customers, and they show you with their pocketbooks.

So get out there and touch your customers! Make an offer! And watch your business explode.

About Author Katie Langston :

Katie Langston is a direct response marketing coach, helping small and midsized businesses get more customers who will pay them more money, more often.&nbsp; See <a href="" target="_blank"></a> for more free, no-nonsense marketing tips, tactics, and techniques.

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Article Added on Sunday, May 3, 2009
Other Articles by Katie Langston

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