Mr R, 12 year old Sam, 9 year old Charlie and I all like sandwiches.
Sam, Charlie and I prefer wholemeal bread.
Mr R prefers a blend of white and wholemeal. (Only an engineer would specify 75% white and 25% wholemeal! )
Sam and Mr R like chicken and mayo sandwiches.
Charlie and I like cheese and tomato sandwiches.
At weekends, we all like Mr R’s famous cheese toasties.
Oh, and we all likes crisps with our sarnies. But then, who doesn’t?!
So, enter the (wait for it….) cheese and cucumber sandwich.
Who would be the most interested in those? Mr R and Sam? Or Charlie and me?
Yep…as Charlie and I already like cheese sandwiches, then trying something similar would be an easy sell.
What about if Company X (let’s call them SarnieCo) introduced a new line of roast beef and horseradish sandwiches?
SarnieCo could tell Mr R and Sam about this new range of sandwiches knowing that they already like chicken mayo sandwiches (ie meat based).
SarnieCo could tempt Charlie and me into trying something new to move us away from our cheese sandwiches. We try them; we like them. We now eat both cheese sandwiches AND roast beef and horseradish sandwiches.
In marketing terms, SarnieCo have just penetrated a new market and expanded their customer base (and potentially their market share).
What could SarnieCo do to tickle our taste buds at weekends when we all enjoy cheese toasties?
What if SarnieCo developed a range of premium crisps that go perfectly with toasted cheese sandwiches?
They send us some trial packets of crisps and a money off coupon. We try them; we love them; we buy them. They become part of our regular weekly shop.
SarnieCo have just diversified into a new market (crisps). Increased their sales to their sandwich customers. And will no doubt pick up brand new crisp customers too.
The CEO of SarnieCo becomes a very happy bunny and retires with a gold watch and a hamper of sandwiches and crisps.
Why am I telling you this?
Because this is what blue chip companies do to their customer base all the time.
They sort them into groups, and they target each group with messages written especially for that group. Those messages could be to tell them about products or services they’re already interested in, products or services they could be interested in, products or services that they ought to try, and run offers to help customers (existing and new) trial their products or services.
You are at the receiving end of this all the time. Watch the emails you get, and the post that lands on your letter box. Put your marketer’s hat on and you end up with a great deal of resource available for free at your fingertips, not to copy, but to inspire.
And you can very easily use what you learn from this resource and from this tactic in your business, and to great effect.
All you have to do is use your email marketing list (collated properly please, no dodgy bought in lists or email addresses picked up from business cards or leaflets) or use a physical mailing list to communicate to these groups.
Your first step – now – today – is to sit down with a pen and paper and think for a few minutes about your customer base. What categories or groups do they fall in to? Look for the similarities and look for the differences.
Write it out. I like to draw groups in different circles…but whatever works for you.
Work out what you currently sell to which group.
Then work out what else you could sell to each group.
Similar products or services?
Different products or services?
More premium products or services?
Write these out next to your groups.
And then communicate with each group separately, tailoring each message to each group accordingly.
In marketing speak, putting your customer base into groups is called “list segmentation”. It has two main effects.
It helps to increase your revenue AND profits in a simple and relatively easy way.
It helps you to build great relationships with your client or customer base. Which in turn helps you to increase your revenue and profit.
And your next step? Look for new customers that fall into your groups.
Repeat your targeted communication.
Result: increased revenue and profit.
Dedicated to your success