Most business owners, dry cleaner owners included, don’t have the foggiest idea where their new customers come from.
You might be asking, “Why do I need to know this Greg?” You don’t need to know it, but if you do know where they’re coming from, you could get lots more from the same place and you’ll also find out if these customers are worth the cost.
Before I specialized in consulting with dry cleaner owners, I did general small business consulting. One of my clients was a plumbing company. Moe was very successful. He spent a small fortune on advertising and had no idea where his customers were coming from until I showed up. Within three months, we had a good idea of where his business was coming from and how much it cost him.
Here is what I did (and I do this for dry cleaners now): I trained his office people to ask where they heard of “Moe’s Plumbing” when prospects called in from his ads. And another thing I did was to give each of his ads different phone numbers so that it was easily traceable. You can do this also with Kall8.com. It only costs $2/mo for a phone number with some usage charges tacked on. It’s well worth it to know where your business is coming from and how much it’s costing you per new customer.
Moe despised the Yellow Pages and loved the radio for advertising. So, he spent less in the Yellow Pages and more on the radio. After tracking his ads for three months, we found out something very interesting. The customers he got from his Yellow Page ads were costing him around $30 and bringing in an average of $480 in revenue. That’s pretty good!
The radio ad customers cost Moe over $500 each and were bringing in $430 in revenue. Now Moe loved the radio because all his workers would be on jobs and hear themselves on the radio and it made them feel good. However, what Moe didn’t know was that the every customer that Moe got on the radio was costing him $70 plus all the other expenses. Therefore, the radio jobs were costing him at least $300 in losses.
As it turned out, the advertiser that Moe disliked the most was the one that was performing the best for him. And that’s how most advertisers get you. You like the ads they create because they stroke your ego and you let them run those ads because it feels good.
Is that what you should be doing? NO!!
You’re not running a charity—you’re running a business. A business that is supposed to make a profit. Not a business that is supposed to lose money.
So, what are you going to do now? Are you going to start tracking where your business comes from? I hope the answer is yes!
Maybe you don’t do any outside advertising. Maybe customers just see your store because you’ve got a great location and they just pop in. Is there any tracking you can do with that?
You could find out why they’re stopping by. Maybe one of your customers referred them. Maybe they were going to Joe’s Cleaners down the street and they break too many of his buttons. So, what could you do about this?
First, you could offer an incentive for other customers to refer their friends and family. And those people that refer many, you could do something special for them like making a big fuss about them in your newsletter (if you have one) or put their picture up in your store with the special award you gave them.
If Joe’s Cleaners quality is getting poor, it’s time to attack. What could you do? You could advertise that if the quality of your current cleaners is not up to snuff, you’ll re-clean it for nothing. All is fair in love and war.
This is why tracking where your customers come from is so important. Track and find out where your customers are coming from and how much it’s costing you. I hope this helped.
To find out more quirky ideas on how to raise your revenue, go to my blog: DryCleaningMarketing.com