As the world continues to try to figure out how to handle COVID-19 and allow society to function, many businesses are still struggling to attract customers. Depending on the nature of your business, there are lots of strategies that might work for you. Today we’re going to dive into the nuts and bolts of one of the most tried and true methods: the sale.
But where do you start? What do you do?
Coming Up With a Discount
There are a couple of things that go into this.
First, you have to choose a product or service both that you can afford to discount and that you think people will be interested in right now.
Then you have to decide on an amount. Too high a discount and you won’t make money. Plus, you may be unintentionally devaluing your offering. Too low a discount and people likely won’t be interested.
The specifics of your discount amount are going to be highly personal to your business, your audience, what you’re offering, and so on. You have to decide what’s best for you.
One area where we can offer more specific advice is on how you present your sale.
Communicating Your Sale to Potential Customers
You can break this one up into two parts.
The first part is the actual language that communicates the sale or discount. Some of this will, again, be dependent on your business and how you brand yourself. Make sure you stay close to the voice and tone you’ve always used.
That being said, you also want to make sure that you don’t appear tone deaf regarding the larger situation in your area/the country/the world. For example, even if your previous tone was salesy and “in your face,” you might want to pull back and show empathy for, say, a worldwide pandemic and/or the financial ruin it has caused for many.
But you do want to create a sense of urgency, so make sure it’s a limited-time offer. This both increases the chance that more people will buy and helps you get more cash-flow faster. If you’re worried about missing out on some sales, remember — there’s no reason you can’t have another sale later. You just want people to feel like this is their big chance to take advantage of your offer.
Perhaps the most important part of the “actual language” is how you write the discount amount itself, and here we have a tip that is quite a bit more general and straightforward: use a percentage rather than a dollar amount.
Seriously, that’s the whole tip.
Why? Because research has shown that it is significantly more effective — even if the discount is exactly the same. For whatever reason, people automatically feel like they’re getting a better deal when they see a percentage off rather than a flat number.
There are all kinds of ways you can get word of your sale out there. From the really expensive (TV spots! Radio ads!) to the less so (Pay-to-Click ads!). And they are all potentially effective depending on what kind of business you do and what kind of people you’re trying to reach.
But we’re going to recommend something a lot simpler.
It’s relatively cheap. It has one of the best ROIs out there. And it tends to elicit a pretty quick response.
What are we talking about? Email.
Use your email list and send out a special deal to past and current customers. It can be a quick email blast, a drip campaign, a newsletter, or a combination of the three.
Why does email work so well? Think about it for a second. When you send to an email list, you’re working with a group of people you already know are interested in your business. Because there’s a history there. And you can exploit that from both directions, making them feel like you’re giving them a special deal as loyal customers and asking them to be loyal to you in this time where businesses everywhere are struggling.
You can go beyond email if you want. Social media updates are also relatively successful at reaching people where they are in a quick and efficient way.
But it doesn’t feel as personal. And you’re less likely to reach as many people in your target audience without paying.
Still feeling a little lost? Want help making sure you get your message just right?
We can help! Reach out anytime and we’ll work with you to help you increase conversions.