Every customer, or business owner for that matter, needs to have a solid customer base. In order for them to be part of the elite group of photographers who eat and live out of their salary as a paid photographer, they need to have as many customers as they can handle.
Now, when you were starting with your photography business, I’m sure you were very focused on finding customers. You did all the marketing strategies in the book and you never stopped handing out your flyers and business cards.
Although these are all good practices for any entrepreneur, should you really spend all your time finding new customers?
Well, the answer may surprise you.
Old Versus New
In the tough times we all live in today, the creativity, patience and determination of a business owner to succeed is tested more than ever. That is why the demand for more marketing and advertising strategies is growing.
Now many big business owners focus much of their resources in finding strategies to attract more customers. That’s common knowledge. Unknown to budding and some veteran entrepreneurs, these successful companies also focus and allot their time in keeping their existing customers.
Granted, new customers mean more customers, you should never neglect the importance of making sure that your customers would come back and avail of your services again.
Remember, when it comes to customers for your business, your mission is to turn non-customers into new customers and turn these new customers into old and existing customers.
As a photographer who is looking for customers, new does not necessarily mean better.
Customer Loyalty Benefits
Aside from it being cheaper way to get profits or sales, building customer loyalty and trust offers another inexpensive (in fact, it’s free!) way to market your business: word-of-mouth advertising.
Have you ever found yourself talking non-stop about a product that you really loved? Well, the same applies to your business. The more satisfied and happy your customers are, the more you’ll get recommendations, free advertisement and it would look great in the “Testimonials” section of your photography website!
Now, the most obvious benefit of having a steady and happy list of customers is the fact that you will never not have any customers. No matter what type of photography services you offer, chances are, your customers will always have a need for more.
Building Customer Loyalty
As a consumer, I want to buy things that are worth every cent of my hard-earned money. This is what your customers want too. The first rule of building customer loyalty is making sure that your photos and the services you are offering are of quality.
If you follow this rule, getting customers to come back to you and become your loyal friends is almost a certainty.
Then again, you can never have too many techniques to keep and maintain your customers.
Another technique for building customer loyalty is to offer different discounts or promotions they would not receive as a member of the general public. The more you show them that you value their loyalty, the stronger it will get.
Honoring and asking their input and suggestions (through surveys, customer feedback forms, etc.) is also a great way to make sure that your customers feel valued. When you show them that you think highly and more importantly, want their opinions, the more they will trust you.
If you have the means for it, you could also print out regular newsletters that would showcase some updates on your business, new services and other photography-related information. But if you’d rather go paperless, sending newsletters is a very effective and cheaper alternative to keep in touch with your customers.
If you have read this far we probably have the same focus and interests. That said, if you ARE interested or indeed serious (serious is more relevant) in customers you can learn a great deal here about getting and keeping customers.
I hope this has got you thinking.