Small Business Owners Marketing and Customer Service
Marketing can be time-consuming, but it doesn't have to be hugely expensive now, thanks to the Internet. By using e-mail and keeping in touch with your clients on a regular basis, you can increase your business without any mail costs.
One big problem for small business owners is the tendency to try to do everything themselves. You have to learn to lead and to develop other people. Also, it is worth the expense to hire an accountant, have a lawyer on call, and use other outside services. If your business is at all profitable and worthwhile, you need time to develop your business. Whether you are in the food and restaurant business or writing e-books and marketing them, you need to devote your energy primarily to what makes your business function.
Take the time to socialize with business people. Even if you are doing the best kind of internet research possible, you have to get out there and talk to business people to know how to ask the right questions. By going to classes and seminars you can learn new ideas and get a chance to network with both clients and vendors so you can both improve your business' operations and also find more clients. Business to business sales operations tend to accelerate more rapidly for small business people because the orders are larger than clients one by one. Going to a business associate's Christmas or New Year's party can be much more than an opportunity to get drunk on five martinis. Once you are over 40-years-old, your acid reflux problems will probably preclude you from doing that in good conscience anyway. So get out there and talk about the real estate market, computer aids to business, or whatever relevant topics there are for you, and get some business cards. You'll feel a lot better about it later, and you won't have a super hangover.
Work on your customer service, it's what keeps customers coming back. Many small business owners spend huge amounts of time and money on advertising and public relations, but tend to neglect the important area of customer service. When you fill an order on a mail-order or electronic information product, do you take the time to email the customer after the order to make sure that they are as satisfied as possible? You can do this by an automatic e-responder, but often, a simple and short note that you compose is worth the effort.
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