I recently had a client who had an off week in business and sent me and email sort of freaking out. It went a little something like this:
“We need to bring people in quickly with a loss-leader and once I bring them in I can hook them on my other product. So let’s discount the heck out of the product sell it cheap cheap cheap and that should increase our business. Run the sale!!!!”
So that is the Cliff notes version but you get the point. How many of you have done this in your business? Probably a lot if not all of you. It is common and easy to do, you get scared and think I will bring a bunch of people in and they will love me so much they will become loyal. That is not really what happens though. When I got this email I first thought “What the heck?” That is not the direction they want to go, they are scared. So I responded by asking them the following questions:
1. What plan do you have in place to convert the people who are coming in to get your super cheap product? This particular customer is down one staff member and the rest are pretty busy as is so will they really be able to give all the “new” people coming in the best possible experience to make them a loyal customer?
2. Who are you going to tell this message to? You can’t just send this out in newsletter form and tell it to your existing customers who have paid full price all along, that will really tick them off. Besides, the point of this is new customers, not just existing ones right?
3. Typically the best way to get a “sale” message out is Radio or TV, you hit it heavy and hard and bring in TONS of people. Great! But………now these “new” customers associate your brand with “Discount” is that really how you want these new customers to view your product or brand is discounted? You are training them from the beginning of the relationship to expect a discount or wait until you lower your price.
After asking them these questions they thought about this “sale” and decided against it. We held steady and the traffic has leveled out. Sometimes being still is the best thing for your business but do you have someone telling you that? Most agencies would have picked up the phone and placed the order for the radio or tv schedule, but I knew that wasn’t the best thing for the client. Do you have someone working with you in any part of your business that will be your level-headed thinker when you want to have a “knee-jerk” reaction? If not get one, if you can’t think of one, call me. I love what I do because I am not going to tell clients what they want to hear, I am going to tell them what they need to hear and knowing that I am making a positive impact on their business is the best payoff I could ever want!