By Nomali Cele
New year, new you? Stuck on how to get started with your goal to get new business? It is possible for your business! Not only that but getting new business, diversifying your business’s income stream and increasing revenue is something most business owners work towards. And it’s completely possible. These three tips are a good way to start your quest to get new business, right now:
- Ask for Testimonials
Word of mouth is an invaluable tool in business. Though pioneering is an admirable trait, not many people want to be the first to do most things, especially when their money is involved. Getting recommendations and testimonials from past customers who are happy to have done business with you is a fabulous way to put future clients at ease.
When pitching or quoting to provide a service or product, offer to put uncertain clients in contact with people you have successfully done business with. Hearing somebody who has worked with your business and loved it, will put potential or new clients at ease about doing business with you.
Types of testimonials:
- You can get written recommendation from past customers and put them on your website or in your proposals;
- You can request that clients consent to their contact information being given to customers who have questions about any aspect of working with you on projects (This may be a difficult type of testimonial to get); or If you sell products, you can encourage customers to send and share reviews of their experiences of using your products.
You believe in your business and what you do; let your potential customers hear if from someone else who also believes in you.
Collaboration is often overlooked as an avenue to expand your horizons and get new business as it’s usually seen as something that may take away from your business in the way of profits. But don’t write collaborations off before you’ve tried! Getting together with industry peers and working together is a move that could get you new business.
You should collaborate if:
- You have a specialist skill or offering in your field;
- You have jobs that require external expertise; or
- You want to create a supportive environment for other young or small businesses in your field.
- Follow up
When you are starting out, rejection is so commonplace that it’s easy to view even positive meetings and proposals that don’t go your way as rejection. It’s easy to hear, “not now” as “no” or “never.” As you go about trying to get new business this year, go back and follow up with the people who were receptive to your business, ideas of services in meetings. People who said they like what you’re doing but couldn’t commit at the time.
Get in touch with them again, request a coffee meeting and let them know about new developments in your business that might be of interest to them. Whether you have good news to share or have been experiencing challenges, these are the people who might surprise you.