Building Trust with a Transparency Statement

This blog is best read in order. If you find yourself a little lost, you may want to begin with the first post.

4 email programs
Popular Email Programs

Now you know how to construct an “Introduction” letter. What’s next? As discussed in the last post, your potential customers know your business on a human level through your “Introduction” letter, now it’s time for them to get to know your business on a professional level. You need to follow-up your “Introduction” with a “Transparency Statement”

The Transparency Statement is usually sent one day after The Introduction in your automation. In the Transparency Statement email you want to lay out the facts of your business, your processes, and your prices (if the latter makes sense for your business). The email should lay out the reality of your business and give your potential client the tools they need to evaluate you. Just like your Introduction is used to build trust, your Transparency Statement is your opportunity to be up-front with your potential clients and build credibility.

An example boomtime Transparency statement might read as follows:

It starts with an in-depth Business Analysis, a proprietary consulting process that uncovers the drivers in your business. We use your time judiciously while your new boomtime marketing team puts in all the hard work to plan out your new Word of Mouth marketing program.

Then, every month your boomtime marketing team analyzes the data, updates your marketing plan and focuses on amplifying your results. Imagine having a whole marketing team, always at your beck and call!

Your existing referrals feed the marketing program, which is focused on getting even more people talking about you, which generates more referrals!mail graphic

We knew it wouldn’t do any good to build another marketing program that was priced out of reach to small business. With four years of development by one of the best digital marketing teams in the industry, we’ve built the automation that allows us to deliver amazing services at an affordable cost.

Finally, the Transparency statement should have a “Let’s Talk” call to action. Though the Transparency Statement isn’t in itself a sales proposal, your “Let’s Talk”
call to action will open the door for anyone who is ready to contact you. Also, by proposing a conversation you’re creating another level of intimacy with your potential clients by presuming the
right to ask.

Are you ready to take your Word of Mouth Marketing to new heights? Let’s Talk. I’ve got an offer your guaranteed to love, but only if you email me right now.

Your “Let’s Talk” call to action is just that, an invitation to open a conversation about your business. The letter is structured in a way that allows your potential customers to internalize your offering and capabilities and make a series of emotional and mental micro-commitments in the process. Your opportunity to close will come later in the Call to Action letter which I will explain in the next post.

Using Rewards to Capture More Prospective Customers

This blog is best read in order. If you find yourself a little lost, you may want to begin with the first post.

“82% (of marketers) use word-of-mouth marketing to increase their brand awareness, but 43% expect word-of-mouth marketing to improve their direct sales.”

Word of Mouth Marketing
Word of Mouth Marketing boomtime

You’ve done the work to ensure your Google+ profile is current, and you have a steady stream of good reviews, now it’s time to capture the Word of Mouth referrals coming to your website. As I mentioned in my last email, you can capture a much larger portion of your Word of Mouth referrals by turning your website into a 24/7 sales person that is constantly engaging new website visitors with a compelling offer. What do I mean?

Well, you have to design your website so that it will pro-actively offer help, capturing your potential customers email addresses in exchange for a reward that gives them a reason to try your business. In turn, you will use that email address to deliver a reward in the form of a compelling offer that provides value to your potential customer.

Most often, rewards are presented in the form of a “lightbox”. A lightbox is a window that appears when a first time visitor arrives on your website or takes a certain action on your site that prompts a pop-up to appear, presenting them with an offer.

Remember, not just any offer will do for your reward. At boomtime, we put considerable effort into crafting great offers with each of our clients. You should spend time creating your reward, taking into account who your customers are and what they value about your business. Ultimately, the type of reward you offer depends on your business. There are two general categories most rewards will fall into: Information Rewards and Value Rewards.

Information rewards show off your expertise, demonstrating a solution to your prospective customer’s problem. For example, an accounting firm can provide a free report, 2017 Tax Guide for Small Business.

Information Reward
Information Reward Example – Word of Mouth Marketing

Value rewards provide a tangible value for the potential customer. A restaurant can offer a coupon (free lunch entree when you bring a friend!).

Value Reward - Word of Mouth Marketing
Value Reward Example – Word of Mouth Marketing

Your prospective customer’s email address IS valuable – that’s why it is only fair that you give them something of value in exchange for that email address. Remember, your website visitors will arrive at your site because they have a need. They have a problem that needs to be solved and they are ready to take action. Whether they need professional services or they are looking for a new place to try for lunch, your offer should solve their problem. When you have a compelling offer that hits the mark and presents the right solution, many more potential customers will be happy to give you their email address.

It’s simple! A more compelling offer results in more potential customers claiming that offer and more new customers trying out your business.

At this point in the process, you’ve gotten the attention of your potential customer and they have volunteered their information in exchange for a compelling offer. This is where most businesses stop, being content with getting their promotion into the hands of more of their website visitors, but it is only the beginning of the process. In the next post, I explain how you should communicate with those on your email list and use marketing automation to increase repeat sales.

The Secret to Great Reviews

This blog is best read in order. If you find yourself a little lost, you may want to begin with the first post.

“88% of people trust online reviews written by other consumers as much as they trust recommendations from personal contacts.”

Secret to Great Reviews
boomtime Word of Mouth Marketing

If only it were so easy. Asking for reviews on a consistent basis is tough to do, but if you are serious about keeping your referrals it needs to happen. The best way to ensure you get the reviews you need regularly is to automate the process. In this post, I’m going to explain exactly how we do that.

Why should you care so much about online reviews? Well, they are the key to Word of Mouth marketing. As I explained in the last post, when your business generates a referral what they’re going to find first in Google isn’t your website. It’s your Google+ page. Which is why great reviews on Google have to be your top priority, but the problem is that consistently getting quality reviews is not always an easy task.

Luckily, there is a trick to getting great feedback for your business while simultaneously increasing your positive reviews! It’s all in the timing of when you ask.

The perfect time to ask a customer for a review is right after they’ve received a compelling offer from you. They are already in the right state of mind, they’ve just had a great experience with your business, and that sets the stage for the best reviews.

At boomtime, we ask your customer to rate you from one to five stars. For those that pick one to three stars, we ask them for more feedback and send that to you. But, for all of those customers that click on four or five stars, we then ask them to review you on Google. The customers reporting one to three stars present an opportunity for you to address the core issue underlying their mediocre review and give you a constant pulse on how your business is doing.

The end result? A steady stream of positive reviews. When you occasionally have something that goes wrong or a customer that simply isn’t possible to make happy, their negative or neutral review makes all of your great reviews appear more realistic! The assumption is that the reviews cannot possibly be coming from real customers. No one believes it when they see too many good reviews which is why, believe it or not, an occasional bad review can actually help your reputation.Review image

That is the secret to great reviews, and great reviews are the cornerstone of Word of Mouth Marketing. Now that you know how to get referrals coming to your site, in the next post, I will explain how to turn your website into a 24/7 member of your sales team to convert more of your website visitors into paying customers.

Picture of a Shack…

I was working with the owner of a great local business that helps put on weddings last week, and they were sharing how tough business has been this year. They do amazing work. Brides just love them and that creates a lot of Word of Mouth. So why the tough times? The number of couples getting married hasn’t drastically changed.

For one, the work from Spicture of a shackEO company they were paying hundreds to every month wasn’t working anymore. What they and the SEO company didn’t understand is that local SEO has drastically changed. The days of referrals simply picking up the phone and calling your business are over. Your referrals aren’t going to go directly to your website after first hearing about you. Instead, they will search your business in Google where they will encounter your Google+ page and it is THAT which has to do the work to win your referrals over and get them to your website.

Using the scenario from the wedding business above, a local potential customer will likely hear about your business from a friend. The referral is great, but in-between hearing great things about your business and picking up the phone they search your business on Google. If they see a “picture of a shack” they will move on, likely comparing you to competitors with a better web presence before making a purchase decision.

 

Once they get to your website, if they see a page rich with the right content they stay, learn about your business, look at reviews, and click through the content you carefully laid out for them to walk them through your process. Great click through content is critical. You have to offer something of value whether it is a coupon, a contest, or a sample of your product. That is what I like to call the Reward (I will explain Rewards and how to use them in an upcoming post). The key is to offer something worth them giving you their coveted information so you have permission to start a conversation.

This is what we mean when we talk about the Convert step in Word of Mouth marketing. You’ve done all of the hard work to create referrals in the market, but you have to make sure they are able to find you, and when they do, like what they see.

Google+ Local SEO
Google+ Local SEO

That’s why I focus on creating amazing, always up-to-date Google+ pages for our small businesses with a steady stream of great reviews. Then, compelling, visually driven, mobile-first websites that communicate what you really do, acting as a 24/7 salesperson for your business.

In the next post, I discuss the second most important part of keeping your referrals in “The Secret to Great Reviews”