We did a small test to see what were some of the biggest problems business owners had and what we found was the biggest problem was “How to Get More Customers“
We know that in order to get more customers you must first figure out what your customers pain points are – find out what are the things they are complaining about that you can fix – and then determine if they are both able and willing to pay for them. The first part of that question is called a customer interview.
Here’s an example: a business owner complains of having too much spam in their email. You respond by creating or finding a product that helps the client reduce their spam and then asking the customer if they would be willing to pay to have their spam reduced. This is called a solution interview.
Customer and Solution Interviews are part of the Lean Startup methodology, which combines Customer Development and Agile Development to create a more sound Business Model that values learning. Agile and Lean both use iterative processes and the Scientific Method to hypothesize, test, and learn in order to create a product that customers actually want before building it. Once they have this “product/market fit” they built it as fast as possible. Erich Stauffer talks more about this cycle here.
If you’re solving clients problems you won’t have to do much marketing at all – the customers will seek you out. If they aren’t seeking you out, you might not be solving their problems.
How do you identify what your customers pain points are?
The simplest answer is to ask your target client or existing client base what things are bothering them most and when you start to see a trend, you can start to ask if they’d be willing to pay for it to get fixed.
A less effective, but quicker route is to find out where your customers are complaining or seeking out solutions online. A good way to do this is by using Google Discussion Search to search for problems people are sharing on forums and other discussion groups.
We did a test search with the term “my business” and this is what we found:
- My business keeps disappearing from Google Places
- I need a slogan for my business
- I need a logo for my Business and possibly a website
- I need help getting payments to my business
- What is the best CRM software for my business?
- Anyone using Dropbox for business file storage?
- I need a really good name for my business
- I need help with my business card
- A client owes my business money… what to do?
- Can I request to remove my business from Yelp / Qype?
- I need help getting my business off the ground
- How to promote a new site?
- How many of you have tried Offline Marketing ?
- What’s your most effective marketing method?
- What is the most important points of business?
- How to get more customers?
Once we started noticing a trend, we started recording things we could blog about, solutions for problems like which CRM is best, how to use Dropbox for your business, and how to promote a new website. Our first post is this post, which addresses the last question
How to Get More Customers?
- Identify a need by asking or searching.
- Find a solution for that need.
- Ask potential clients if they would pay for that solution.
- If so, write about it. If not, find a different problem or solution.
- Once you’ve written about it, promote it using SEO.
Essentially you start out with Lean methodologies, then do content marketing, then finish with SEO. So the key to getting more customers is not SEO, it’s knowing you have a product that solves a problem AND people are willing and able to pay for and then writing up content about it on your “home base” and only then doing search engine optimization.