Get your marketing plan in full swing in 90 days

Would you rather have only a couple customers visit the store or the door constantly opening with people flowing in and out? 

Easy question. Of course, you’d rather have more customers bringing more money and freedom for you. But how? Does it feel sometimes like you’ve tried everything short of hiring a marching band?

Here are three great ways to bring a flood of shoppers right now.

Make Friends with Facebook Ads

If you’re still hoping your followers will start seeing all your posts again free, that ship has sailed. It’s easy to waste money on Facebook ads if you jump in without a plan, but it can be simple and inexpensive to have great success there, too.

First, quit measuring success in likes. Use “Will it bring people in the store?” as a measure of where you put your ad money. Start with ways for new customers to connect by running ads for in-store events. Once they’re in your store, wow them! (Use Facebook’s advanced targeting to reach those who are already your customers for sales and products!)

Use local-specific words and pictures from inside your store. People see hundreds of ads every day for national brands and things to order online, but they tend to scroll on past. When you pop up and mention your local area or something that clearly says, “Hey! We’re right here for you!” you’ll stop them in their tracks.

Remind Them You’re Awesome

Once you get them, make sure you don’t just wait for them to think of you. Reach out by phone or email to people who haven’t been in your store for the last 30 to 60 days. We all sell pet food, so unless you live in a heavy tourist area, people should be coming by at least once a month.

If you’re not sending an email to your customers weekly, biweekly or monthly (pick an interval you can commit to and stick with it!), you’re missing out on major traffic. (And if your email is a sale notice once a week with nothing else — you’re missing out, too!) Let them feel like they’re a part of the family and don’t drop the ball. Keep in touch to keep the door swinging!

Send Mail — We Mean Real, Actual Mail

Once upon a time we were all enchanted by the little ding of a new email. Exciting! Now most of us have at least 10 (and some have 10 thousand) unread emails in our inbox.

What don’t we get anymore? Real mail. Reach out to your top customers with a direct mailer. It can be as easy as a postcard or note, or a printed mailer with a fun offer or small gift. Entice them into the store with a tangible reminder of how cool it is there.

As a store owner, your to-do list is extremely long. So give yourself 90 days to conquer a full-on marketing plan. Give each of the ideas above 30 days of planning, implementing and systematizing, so that 90 days from now your marketing plan is in full swing, bringing a consistent flow of new shoppers and regulars ... all resulting in your registers ringing over and over again. 

Tips for Posting Effective Facebook Ads

  • Jot down some key ideas, points and messages.
  • Pick just one goal and make that focus.
  • Identify what specific customer experience or need your offer will fulfill.
  • Mention your business’s name in the text at least once.
  • Include an offer and a call to action — what you want the reader to do and how you will reward them.
  • Set a time limit to create a sense of urgency to act.
  • Include a branding message in each post.
  • Use a photo that includes people’s (or pets’) faces, not just products.
  • Write your post with a clear idea of who you want to attract to your store.

 

Candace D’Agnolo owns successful pet business, Dogaholics, and offers business consulting at Pet Boss Nation. For help creating a customized 90-day plan to tackle all your business goals, download a free worksheet, at petbossnation.com/petsplus. Contact her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

This article originally appeared in the March-April 2017 edition of PETS+.