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Customer Experience

How one strategy can add thousands to your database

Ben Angel
Entrepreneur

Ben Angel is an author of three bestselling business and personal development books. He specialises in helping small business, entrepreneurs and companies become more appealing to the media and their customers

Ben Angel
Entrepreneur

Ben Angel is an author of three bestselling business and personal development books. He specialises in helping small business, entrepreneurs and companies become more appealing to the media and their customers

Regardless of the type of business you have, or product or service you sell, there is massive untapped potential in email marketing and the automation of your campaigns.

In an ideal world, our marketing would attract people who are ready to buy what we have to sell, and our databases would be teeming with hot prospective customers ready to take action. Sadly, that isn’t always the case.

However you can execute an incredibly simple marketing strategy that attracts the right kind of prospects. Prospects that create buzz around your brand, grow your social media following, and most importantly, help build a database of customers ready to open their wallets.

This is the strategy I’ve personally used to build a list of over 30,000 email subscribers, as well as how others are applying it to their businesses globally.

And it’s simple: Run a competition or give away something of high-perceived value for free. To do this, we must follow five simple steps.

hands typing on an open laptop

Step 1: Choosing the right prize or freebie to give away

We rarely enter a competition just for fun. We enter because it has a great prize: one that stops us in our tracks and makes us say, “I need to have that.”However it’s important not to give away something that’s worth a lot of money if it’s not directly related to your business. While a diamond ring might be a drool-worthy prize for a jeweller’s customers, it isn’t going to attract the right people to your list if you’re a landscape gardener.Define your prize by what your best customers are drooling over.  Ideally this is one of your products or services, as it will ensure everyone who enters is interested in your business. If you don’t know what prize to offer, ask your customers though social media or when you’re talking to them. 

The Diamond Candles Promotion

Diamond Candles is a US business that sells candles, each with a ring at the bottom. The rings have codes that can result in prizes up to $5000 in value. Diamond Candles wanted to reach one million likes on its Facebook page, so it promised to run a competition once it reached that milestone.

This was a clever promotion because:

  • It made people want to like the page so they could reach one million fans and launch the competition.
  • It encouraged sharing, which spread the word further
  • It gave away their own product, which allowed people to try it.
  • The prize was appealing to the ideal customer.

The results speak for themselves: There were 59,307 entries and the current number of likes has surpassed one million. They achieved their goal of boosting their page likes and built their customer database in the process.With the right strategic forethought, this could work for any business. And while your figures might be smaller, if you have 1000 entries and one quarter of them become a fan of your page, it's equal to some of the winners in this years Shorty Awards.

Step 2: Build the need

If you decide to give away lots of prizes, you should choose those that also build the need for your business’ main product or service offering. As you build the need, make sure there is an up-sell or a natural progression from free into paid products or services.  After all, the end result is for you to make money.

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Step 3: Communicating your promotion

Don’t just set up your promotion and expect people to find it. You need to find a way to bring the competition to people’s attention, and drive them to the entry page.  A simple way to do that is with a Facebook ad.  You can set the parameters for the ad so that it targets the people you want as clients, maximising what you spend your money on.While your ad can direct people to your Facebook page, it’s more effective to direct them to a landing page on your website, allowing you to track the results.

Step 4: Converting the leads

Once they’re on your landing page, keep it simple. Don’t ask for too much information or you’ll lose them. Ask for the basics, like a name and email to enter. Later, in your ongoing marketing, you can ask for more information.It’s also worth investigating installing a Facebook Conversion Pixel on your landing page.  This tracks the movements of your visitors as they move through the site, allowing you to measure conversions. 

These five steps can be distilled into two critical points:

  • Choose a prize your ideal client will drool over
  • Communicate with your customers before, during and after the competitionIt’s a tried and tested strategy that, with some savvy thinking behind it, can help deliver results time and time again.
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