10 Secrets To Growing Your Business

September 24, 2018 | By Scott Snyder

Do you want to grow your business?

Then you’re in the right place.

Because today I’m going to reveal 10 secret strategies that can help you grow your business as much as 100%, 200%, even 500% or more…

You might be wondering as a company how do you do that? 

Well the answer is, It's magic!

That's right have you ever marveled at a magician's magic tricks as a child or adult? 

Of course you have! And you probably asked the Magician at one point or another, "How did you do that?" 

As you know, a Magician can never reveal how their tricks are done because it's against their code of conduct. 

Lucky for you, you're reading this today! Because I'm going to show you a behind the curtains look at the infrastructure that you have to put in place to grow your business. 

Once it's in place, be prepared, people marvel at your success and ask how did you grow your business? 

And you can answer them with, It's Magic.

So, let's get started.

Don’t have time to read the whole post right now?

No worries. Let me send you a copy so you can read it when it’s convenient for you. Just let me know where to send it (takes 5 seconds):

Secret 1. The Strategy

According to Jay Abraham there are only 3 ways you can increase revenue:

  • Increase the number of customers
  • Increase the transaction size
  • Increase the purchasing frequency

So what’s the best approach to doing this?

In making your decision you should consider The Pareto Principle. It’s states that in general, 20% of your customers represent 80% of your sales.

If that’s the case, you should be racing to find out who are the top 20% of your customers.

Once you do, I’m willing to bet you’re going to want to find more customers like them, right?

Hell yeah!

Now,  I know you wish you could just wave a magic wand to find them, but I'm going to show you something even better, I'm going to show you how to automate this entire process. 

Let’s take a look at how to figure out who your best customers are? And how to find more of them.

Secret 2. Identify Your Best Customers

Ok, so it's no secret anymore that you need to find your best customers, but it’s not enough to just find the ones that make 80% of your sales.

You’re going to want to know:

  • Who are my most recent customers?
  • Who are my most loyal customers?
  • Who are my biggest spending customers?

If you can do that, you’re going to be able to focus your marketing efforts on these high-value customer segments in order to drive profit.

In Peter Fader’s book, Customer Centricity, he says you should focus on the right customers for a strategic advantage so that you can invest your time and money where it matters most.

So how do you do it? How do you determine who your best customers are?

It all starts with market segmentation.

Segmentation

Segmentation tools are usually found in most CRM software platforms, it gives marketers a way to slice and dice their database into different customer segments so they can profile and target their prospects with much more precision.

Here’s some of the different ways you can segment your database.

Geographic Data (Where they are)

Geographic data tells you about where the customer is located.

For example, you may segment your database by city, state, region, etc...

Demographic Data (Who they are)

Demographic data tells you about who the customer is.

For example, you may use a prospect’s contact profile to create segments based on job title, age, and much more...

Behavioral Data (What they are doing)

This type of profiling is more concerned with what the customer is actually doing. It cares only about customer activity.

For example, you may use behavioral data such as website pages visits, email opens, clicks, purchases and much more to segment your customers

Psychographic Data (Why are they buying)

Psychographic data tells us the “The Why”. Why are your customers in the market for a product or service?

One insight that can go a long way is to realize that, "People do not buy products or services, they buy solutions to their problems". 

Let’s take a look how you might use a behavior segmentation called RFM to find out identify your best customers.

What is RFM?

Recency Frequency Monetary Value (RFM) is a quick way to segment a your database based on purchasing behavior.

It’s a marketing technique used to determine quantitatively which customers are the best ones by examining how:

  • recently a customer has purchased (recency)
  • how often they purchase (frequency)
  • how much the customer spends (monetary).

Recency

Recency (R) is defined as the amount of time since the last purchase your customer makes.

One way to calculating recency is to look at the amount of months since the last purchase, but you could also measure it by weeks or days...

Frequency

Frequency (F) is defined as how often a buyer has a monetary transaction. You would typically query all your customers transactions up to the current date. It’s the accumulation of all your sales to a given customer.

Monetary

Monetary Value (M) is the sum of all revenue earned throughout the life of a customer doing business with you.

How do you perform RFM?

First you need to determine if you want to perform RFM on your entire customer database, or just a subset or segment.

For example, you can segment customers based on a geographical area (ie. State = California), and then use RFM for transaction based segmentation.

Let’s go through an example:

Before you can begin, you’re going to need to export your purchase history for each customer in your database based on a time frame that you want to work with.

Here’s what you’re going to need for each customer:

  • Recency: The Date of Last of Purchase
  • Frequency: Total Number of Orders
  • Monetary Value: Average Order Value
  • Timeframe: Orders in the last 12 months

The next step is to compare all your customers or a segment of customers in your database. As we have already discussed you can slice and dice your database by using any of the following types of segmentation.

  • Geographic
  • Demographic
  • Behavioral
  • Psychographic

In this example we will rank all customers in California across our chosen metric, and then score them based on how well they perform relative to the other customers that have purchased in the last 12 months.

You’re going to want to determine what is the primary metric that you want to compare each customer on. 

Is it recency, frequency, monetary or time frame?

For this example we are going to make the time frame from last order the primary metric.

Tip: The more recent a transaction, the more likely your customer will respond to sales and marketing efforts like: email, phone calls, direct mail...

To get started, open your exported data in a Google Sheet.

Next you need to add a column to the right of Last Purchase and call it Days Passed. We need to calculate how many days from the current date to the Last Order.

In the current date column D2 add this formula:

=-(C2-now())

This takes the date of purchase and subtracts it from today’s date.

Next, let’s add the three columns for your RFM scores.

Add them across the top R for "Recency", F for "Frequency", and M for "Monetary Value" as illustrated in the image below.

Navigate over to your Recency KPI Days Passed, and sort the list in Ascending order to make sure the most recent orders are first.

Take the total amount of customers exported and divide by 4. In this example there are 100 customers that I exported for the last 12 months.

Create a separator line after each 25 customers. Now you will have 4 sections as we are using quartiles.

Give each quartile a score reflective of the position.

  • First Quartile: 1
  • Second Quartile: 2
  • Third Quartile: 3
  • Fourth Quartile: 4

Frequency

Now do the same steps for Frequency, but we will order descending so the number highest numbers appears first for number of orders.

For frequency we are using the total number of orders over the 12 month period as the Frequency KPI.

Once they are sorted we will give each quartile a score reflective of the position.

  • First Quartile: 1
  • Second Quartile: 2
  • Third Quartile: 3
  • Fourth Quartile: 4

Monetary

Finally we will follow the same steps for Monetary using a descending order of Total Revenue.

Congratulations. You have everything in place to do your analysis.

The next step is to use your RFM score to segment your customers and assign them to data driven personas that update over the course of time.

Your Best Customers

Profile:

These are your best customers who have bought the most recent, the most often, and generated the most revenue.

How do your market to them?

Show them your appreciation for your business by rewarding them for their loyalty. These customers are ideal for up-selling and cross selling as they have demonstrated that their willingness to pay. Tap into their buying preferences and make recommendations for other products that they may be interested in.

Marketing Strategies:

  • Rewards
  • Up-sell
  • Cross-sell

Your Most Loyal Customers

Profile:

These are your customers that buy most often from you.

How do your market to them?

Your customers have unlimited choices, so you should consider implementing a customer loyalty program to reward these customers. Everyone wants to feel appreciated and there are numerous ways you can do this.

Marketing Strategies:

  • Rewards 
  • Discounts
  • Free Shipping

Your ​Highest Paying Customers

Profile:

These customers are spending the most money on your products and services.

How do your market to them?

You’re going to want to consider testing how much they are willing to spend by offering them premium products and special offers.

Marketing Strategies:

  • Up-selling
  • Cross Selling

Secret 3. Implement The Right People, Process, Technology

One thing is for sure, if you want to grow your business you’re going to need the right people, processes and technology to do it.

Let me introduce you to my two friends, TOM and COM that will help you get on the right path.

Target Operating Model (TOM)

Your TOM helps you define the processes required to support your “Target” State.

This includes your technology infrastructure, and necessary data and analytics tools that you need to ensure that your business can achieve its objective to increase revenue.

Current Operating Model (COM)

The “Current” State, represents your Current Operating Model (COM) and how your organization is configured today. It’s your As-Is State.

In order to get to your target state you need to take an inventory of what you have today and how much it’s costing you.

Download this Technology Stack Checklist. You can use this checklist to determine what technology you have today and what you need to achieve your TOM.

Once you complete this checklist you need to make the following decision:

  • Should I use a whole bunch of different apps, from different vendors, using different databases in order to manage my brand?
  • Should I use a Unified Platform to save time and money.

The Right Technology

If you want to get on the fast track to calculating your RFM and have the ability to use different KPIs for RFM segmentation you’re going to want to  unify your customer data and one way to do that is to use a Unified Commerce Platform.

What is Unified Commerce?

You can think of Unified Commerce as an All-In-One System with a complete range of tools already integrated and available at your fingertips.

It unifies the following

  • CRM
  • Marketing Automation
  • Customer Service
  • Help Desk
  • Commerce

Why is Unified Commerce So Important?

One the main challenges businesses are facing today with Software is user adoption.

Industry research has indicated that one of the reasons why poor user adoption is pervasive is because businesses are using too many apps from different software vendors.

When you use too many apps you end up in what I call “The Integration Hell Zone”.

The Integration Hell Zone

Without all of the data from your interactions with customers available and unified, the ability of your analytics to model accurately what’s going on with your performance diminishes into vague estimation.

Some of the side effect of the Integration Hell Zone can dramatically reduce your ability to grow your business:

  • Data Silos
  • Poor User Adoption
  • Poor Employee Morale
  • Not Able To Be Customer Centric
  • Poor Sales Performance

This has become such a serious problem in the field of business intelligence that there are now entirely separate software packages just for trying to handle data analysis in a useful way across all your different software.

Benefits of Unified Commerce

A Unified Commerce solution has the following benefits:

  • Save Valuable Time
  • Eliminate Costly Apps
  • Access Better Business Intelligence (BI)
  • High Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Boost Employee Morale
  • And more...

At the end of the day two of the most powerful value propositions for products or services revolve around saving time and saving money. Unified Commerce is a great way to do both of these while giving you access to the tools you need to increase your revenue.

Save Time

Let’s look at what kind of time you can save by doing this. Let’s assume that you have a small team of 5 employees that need to log into at least 3 other apps a day across sales marketing and customer service.

I know for myself I loose at least 10 minutes of my day each time I log into another app. 

Why so long? 

Moving in and out of different apps is not fluid, each app has it's own user experience that takes time to adjust to. You're also going to encounter distractions every time you venture in and out of different apps like the following:

  • Viewing Web pages
  • Reading the News 
  • Viewing Blog Post

For this example let’s use only 2 minutes as the amount of time lost between logging in and out of each app.

If you have 5 employees you're looking at 30 minutes of lost time per/day (5 x 2 x 3 = 30). Multiply that by 5 days and we're at 2.5 hrs per/week ( (30 x 5) / 60 = 2.5 hrs   ) and 10 hours a month (2.5 x 4 = 10 hrs).

As you can see for a small operation an extra 10 hours a month can be a big deal and if your a medium and large organizations it can be a much more significant amount of time savings.

Save Money

If you add in an average salary of say $25 per/hour your loosing $250 per/mo from your employees logging in and out of apps. For a small operation that could be saving that could go towards a unified application. If you factor in closing a few extra deals a month, it starts to make even more sense.

Whether or not this is right for you, it’s important to know that he movement has already begun!

In a survey conducted by National Retail Federation, more than two-thirds say a unified commerce platform could improve margins, brand value and revenue. Additionally, over the next 5 years, 86 percent of retailers surveyed plan to implement a unified commerce platform. 

Secret 4. Build Data Driven Buyer Personas

In Conversion XL’s blog post, How to Build Robust User Personas in Under a Month they mention that using made up data is one of the biggest flaws in user personas today.

That’s why if you want to increase revenue for your business your going to want use data driven buyer personas.

So…what the heck is are data driven buyer persona?

A data driven buyer persona is a persona that is based on real life data that is constantly changing. 

In order to do this you need a tool that will allow you to segment your database based on the different segmentation types we described like the ones below.  

  • Geographic
  • Demographic
  • Behavioral
  • Psychographic

After you segment your database you need to be able to assign your segments to your persona in order for them to be data driven. 

If you’re serious about growing your business and increasing revenue you need to put the time into researching your customers so you can gain valuable insights into your target customers and segment your database properly. 

In the next step you're going to start to unleash your psychic powers and be able to read the minds of your customers. 

Just imagine if your sales and marketing teams could read the minds of your customers! 

Read on to learn more

Secret 5. Conduct Qualitative and Quantitative Research

Many businesses assume to know their customer, but in reality they don’t know who they are, what they want, or what pain they’re trying resolve. That’s why you need to perform both qualitative and quantitative research.

Qualitative Research

Qualitative research is exploratory and it helps you discover information about people’s motivations, thinking, and attitudes.

Qualitative research is almost always the starting point when you seek to discover new problems and opportunities–which will help you do deeper research later.

While this brings depth of understanding to your research questions, it also makes the results harder to analyze and measure.

That’s why it’s best to use qualitative research in conjunction with quantitative research.

Quantitative Research

Quantitative research helps you measure data by crunching numbers, it’s structured and statistical.

How do you combine these two forms of research?

Let’s take a look at an example scenario where we use both.

Let’s say you sell online and want feedback from your site visitors. You can probably already measure several things with quantitative research with closed-ended multiple choice questions.

For example

  • how easy was it to use the site?
  • how would you rate the variety of products that we offer?
  • how did you hear about us?
  • how likely are you to recommend us to a friend?

All these questions are closed-ended and easily measurable.

But you also may want to provide a few open-ended, qualitative research questions to find out what you may have overlooked.

You could use questions like:

  • What did you enjoy most about our online store or website?
  • How could we improve your experience?
  • Do you have any feedback you think we should be aware of?

If you discover any common themes through these qualitative questions, you can decide to research them more in depth, make changes to your store, and make sure to add quantitative questions about these topics to your new site visitors.

For example, let’s say several said that their least favorite thing about the store was there was no easy way to get answers to their questions. Next time, your survey might ask quantitative questions like how satisfied people were were with the customer service on a scale of 1 to 10, or let respondents choose from a list of potential ways that customer service can improve.

These quantitative questions can then help your determine if the original feedback is an isolated problem or if it’s widespread. In essence your quantitative questions are helping you to validate your qualitative research.

Secret 6. Manage Your Touchpoints

Touchpoints are all the interactions your customer experiences before, during, or after they purchase something from your organization.

Fortunately, you have the opportunity to shape this experience, but you're not going to be able to do it unless you take an inventory of all your customer touchpoints.

To do this start with a piece of paper or an excel spreadsheet. Across the top row write the following column headers for the following:

  • Before Purchase
  • During Purchase
  • After Purchase

Next, you want to identify your customer touchpoints by making a list of all the places and times your customers might come into contact with your brand during each of these stages above.

After you have a list of all your touchpoints create another spreadsheet, we're going to add all your touchpoints one one column (Your Y Axis). Next we will add across the top the following steps as your (X Axis)

Buyer Journey (Before Purchase)

  • Awareness
  • Consideration
  • Decision (Purchase)

Customer Journey (After Purchase)

  • Use
  • Ask
  • Advocacy

This takes us to the next step that you need to do in order to increase revenue.

Secret 7. Ask for Customer Feedback

Each touchpoint in your organization is an opportunity for engagement that should be tracked, analyzed, and improved whenever possible.

If you want to increase customer loyalty and increase revenue you’ve got to maintain ongoing dialogue with your customers.

You need to Close The Loop on your customer feedback.

A Closed loop feedback initiative empowers employees to reach out to a satisfied or dissatisfied customer and gain insight into the customer’s experience.

Secret 8. Create A Customer First Culture

If you want to start increasing revenue you need to understand the importance of the customer experience you deliver.

And it starts with the first people your customers interact with — your employees.

If your employees create a good experience for the customer, chances are they’ll wanna come shop with you again.

The same is true on the flip side. If your employees are being nonchalant with customers, giving them the bare minimum level of service, your oh-so-impressionable customers aren’t going to be coming back anytime soon.

That means everyone in your company — from the CEO to the receptionist — must take customer experience very seriously. Your business depends on it.

Secret 9. Automate, Automate, Automate

If you want to grow your business,  you should focus on promoting efficiency within your organization. Without being increased efficiency, the amount of work done is normally  disproportionate to the amount of output produced.

So how do you promote growth while being efficient at the same time?

The answer is automation!

With advances in sales automation and marketing automation you can help your employees become more efficient.

You're going to want to automate as many parts of the sales and marketing process as you can, to keep track of a customer's interests, behaviors while on your site, and demographics, then leverage that information to make it easier to distinguish when your sales team should reach out and make contact with your customers.

Secret 10. Product Market Fit

One of the ways to increase the number of transactions with your customers is to develop new products and services. When doing this you want to use a product market fit strategy.

What is Product Market Fit?

It’s all about align your products and services to a problem that people have. In essence product market fit is about creating value for your customers based on their needs.

Here’s a definition from Marc Andreesen, who originally described ‘Product/Market Fit’ in his post The Only Thing That Matters:

The key takeaway is to not develop products first and then search for demand. Instead, find a problem that has demand for a product or service (the solution) and then develop for that customer segment.

How do you do that?

As we have already mentioned, qualitative and quantitative research is critical to helping you identify the needs, wants and desires of your customers.

You’re going to want to use surveys, interviews and observations to understand your customer so you can make more informed decisions about your new products and services.

Alex Osterwalder and his team at Strategyzer have developed a tool called the value proposition canvas to help you understand your customers needs, and design products and services they want.

Here's a short video that explains it.

Bonus: Build Relationships

If you made it this far, you're well on your way to understanding what you need to do in order to grow your business. However, it would be deceiving to think that you would be able to do that with out building relationships. 

As I already mentioned, today's consumer has more choices than ever before and competition is fierce, that's why you have to build relationships with your existing customers, the community, and your target customers if you want to really start growing. 

Here's some ideas on how you can do that:

Customers Service

Whether you're a startup or an existing business that wants to grow, you're going to need to put in place the right people and technology to ensure that your customer service is exceptional.  

We already talked about touchpoint management. You want to make sure you are meeting or exceeding your customers' expectations at each one of your touchpoints. 

This will help reinforce your brand promise and increase the chances that your customers will refer other people to your business.

Attend Networking Events

I can't emphasize enough how important this is, you need to Invest time to build your networks! 

It’s not what you know but who you know and you're going to need to make it a top priority to expand your horizons and meet new people.

Social Media

Using Social Media to promote your business to potential customers is common these days, but you need to find ways to stand out from the crowd.

  • Stop trying to sell your products and services and focus more on the problems that you solve. 
  • Tell your story so people can relate to you and your business. Give them a reason to choose you over your competition. 
  • Remember, People Do Not Buy Products or Services, They Buy Solutions To Their Problems!
  • Put your customers in the spotlight of attention.

You also want to use Social Media to monitor what people are saying about your brand. You can think of it as an extension of your customer service. 

Host Events

There's nothing better than Face to Face interaction with your customers. That's why you should host your own event and get to know your customers and build relationships with them. 

Customer Loyalty Programs

We already went over how important it is to identify your best customers. You're going to want to show them that you appreciate them. That's why you need to deploy a customer loyalty program. This is a great ways to increase customer retention and sales.

You are 70%  more likely to get new business from your existing customers than getting new business from people you have never done business with before. It also costs up to three times more money to acquire new customers than it does to sell something to an existing customer. 

Partner Programs

Build strategic partnerships so you can open the door to new opportunities. 

Community

Your community is everything! Start building brand awareness and establish relationships with community leaders. Find ways to give back to the community.

Conclusion

For as long as I can remember it's always been the big corporations that had all the power. But everything changed during the great recession and today's consumers are in total control.

They have all the power, and all it takes is just one bad experience to make your reputation disappear.

  • They have unlimited choices
  • They demand convenience
  • They do research and read reviews before they buy
  • And they demand meaningful experiences

This new consumer is continuously evaluating brands before, during and after they make a purchase.

That means in order to grow your business you’re going to need to put in place the people, processes, and technology you need in order to win over the the hearts and minds of your customers during every stage of the customer experience lifecycle.

Today you learned the secret strategies to help you do just that:

  1. The 3 Ways to grow your business
  2. How to find your best customers
  3. Target Operating Model
  4. How To Implement Data-Driven Buyer Personas 
  5. Quantitative & Qualitative Research
  6. How To Manage Your Touchpoints
  7. How To Implement A Customer Feed Back Loop
  8. Why You Need A Customer First Culture
  9. How To Get Product Market Fit 
  10. You Need to Automate Repetitive Task
  11. Build Relationships



Scott Snyder is the Founder & CEO of Sellution. He is dedicated to helping businesses of all sizes gain access to the technology they need in order to grow.
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