How to fill up your calendar with paying clients (swipe this)
Is your goal for this year to figure out how you can attract a steady stream of customers to your business?
This topic used to be a mystery to me— I had no clue how to attract new clients to our business and we wasted a lot of time and money trying tactics that really didn’t work (I’m talkin’ tenders, in-person, mail drops and discounts— blegghh!).
I want to save you the heartache we went through by giving you a step by step blueprint you can use to attract new customers to your business. This is much more than a list of ideas, it’s the exact system that has worked for us and I hope it helps you to hit your revenue goals this year and beyond!
Step 1: Figure out who your ideal customers are
If you don’t have a clear understanding of who your ideal customers are, this will be your first step. You can’t attract them if you don’t know who they are! While it’s tempting to keep this description nice and broad, try and get as specific as possible so you can hone in on exactly what your ideal customer wants, needs and desires.
Step 2: Create a credible visual identity & website
Whether they find you through a referral, online ad, or SEO, your customer’s first pit stop is almost always your website, so it’s important that you build trust by showing off who you are and what you’re capable of.
Don’t have the budget to hire a pro? That’s ok! Simply start with something basic and work towards upgrading later.
Doing your visuals on the cheap?
If you plan to DIY or hire an inexperienced designer for your visuals, my advice would be to stick with a simple typography based logo (wordmark) and 2-3 colours in your palette to begin.
Looking for a website that won't break the bank?
Ask if your web designer can start with a template design and modify it for you, or find a template that suits your content and modify it yourself, just make sure you plan it out first. You’ll also find tips on crafting a killer home page and about page on our blog.
Writing your own copy?
For your website words, remember to position your customer as the hero, be clear about who you are and what you do, and don’t forget the social proof (reviews & testimonials). If it’s sounding a bit stodgy, here are 8 ways you can elevate your copy.
Step 3: Optimise your website for search engines
Want to attract customers who are ready to buy and already searching for what you sell? It’s a no brainer right? If you haven’t already, it’s time to get familiar with search engine optimisation (SEO) so you can help your website to gain more visibility in search engine results pages.
You can hire a professional to do this for you, or you can learn to optimise your own website. It sounds tricky, but is totally possible to learn. In fact, I think every business owner should have a basic understanding SEO if they are managing their own website content.
There are lots of great books, resources and courses out there to teach you. Here are some fantastic places to begin—
- Moz’s Beginner’s Guide to SEO (FREE)
- Google’s Search Engine Optimisation Starter Guide (FREE)
- SEO Fitness Workbook by Jason McDonald (2019) ($11.99 on kindle)
Step 4: Build your email list
I don’t know what you’ve heard, but email is definitely not dead. In fact, many of our amazing clients first connected with us by jumping on our email list!
Email allows you to stay top of mind and build trust by sharing helpful, relevant information and advice. And, you already know that people are much more likely to buy from those they like, know and trust.
Email addresses are valuable, and people want to know that what you’re going to be sending them isn’t going to be spammy or irrelevant. We’ve found the most effective way to build our list is by offering free valuable content (lead magnet). I outlined how to create your own lead magnet over here. Whatever you do, never buy email subscribers or add people to your list without permission. It’s spammy, and it won’t help you build any trust.
Here are my big tips for winning at email marketing—
- Show up consistently, without fail, no matter how busy or crazy things get. A weekly or fortnightly email is usually best to stay top of mind.
- Send helpful, relevant, insightful content that your ideal customer will benefit from.
- Make sure the people you’re emailing know what you do. It’s ok to invite people to buy from you every so often.
- Always try to link back to your website instead of to an external site (it’s good for SEO).
Step 5: Create and share content consistently
Whether it’s written, audio or video content, sharing your personality, ideas and knowledge online is a great way to stay top of mind, establish yourself as an expert and build trust and connection with your audience.
In addition to attracting new clients, showing up consistently in inboxes and online can also help you meet new people and expand your reach to new audiences. This could include opportunities to collaborate with another business or influencer, speak at an event, or write a guest post.
Once you’ve created content (on instagram TV, facebook live, or for your podcast, blog or vlog) you can re-purpose and share it on other platforms.
If you’re new to content marketing, or you’ve never been able to stick with it, I suggest focusing on 1 platform that your ideal customer is most likely to use. Once you’ve mastered posting regularly on this channel, you can add more to the mix if you think it’ll be beneficial to your marketing efforts. If your content marketing strategy is too complex, you’ll be less inclined to stick with it, so it’s really important to start slow and build up.
Here are some tips for creating great content—
- Address a challenge or desire your ideal customer might be dealing with.
- Don’t hold back, create your best content and add lots of value.
- It doesn’t have to be perfect. The more you create, the better you’ll get at creating.
- Batch your content to make the best use of your time.
Step 6: Drive instant traffic with ads
SEO, email and content marketing is a great long term strategy, but if you’re in a hurry to attract new clients, investing in paid advertising can speed things along and works really nicely in conjunction with the steps listed above. Paid ads can increase your reach and help you connect with customers who are ready to buy.
While it’s important to plan any marketing effort, paid ads can quickly rack up an expensive bill if they’re not set up correctly, so it’s essential that you have a clear budget and testing strategy. If you want to invest in some professional help, there are some great agencies or freelancers who can help you get setup or manage your ad campaigns for you.
Once you’ve optimised your paid ads, the cost to acquire a new customer or lead should be much less than the revenue you earn from them, so you can keep investing in paid ads to attract a steady stream of new customers to your business.
Which kinds of paid advertising work?
It depends on what your goals are, but here are some suggestions—
For growing your email list or filling up a webinar
I’d opt for social media ads (facebook, instagram pinterest). To learn more about facebook ads, check out some beginners guides here and here. For instagram and pinterest ads, check out Adspresso’s instagram ads guide and pinterest ads guide.
For attracting 'ready to buy' clients
I’d look into Google AdWords. If you’re not familiar with AdWords, it’s where people bid to have their website placed at the top of google’s search results pages. Neil Patel has a great step by step guide to AdWords here and Search Engine Watch has a beginners guide here.
Put it into action
Finding people who need your products or services doesn’t need to be difficult. Once you understand the basics, you can choose to hire help where you need it or learn the ropes yourself. If you follow the 6 steps outlined above, and implement them consistently, I have no doubt you’ll have customers knocking at your door before you know it!
Now, I want to hear from you— how many customers you’re hoping to attract each month? What action steps do you need to focus on to start implementing the blueprint above?
If you found this helpful, or know someone who needs a little help getting some more customers through the door, please give it a share!