How to take a simple idea and use it to grow your sales four ways

Let me introduce you to Tracy, a business owner how, like you and other thousands of small business owners around the world, are juggling a start-up, a part-time job and the ever challenging task of raising kids.

Tracy was tired of wearing uncomfortable PJs and decided to start Skirties Sleepwear

Not being a designer herself, did not stop Tracy from creating her own range of comfortable PJs.  How did she go about it?

By hunting and finding offshore manufacturers to produce the range.

Did it work?

In a way it did. Tracy's new line of extremely comfy sleepwear is now starting to be stocked in stores and on her online shop.

There was only one problem.

The same problem that hunts most small business owners.

A shoestring marketing budget.​

Tracy approached me to help her work on her most recent sales growth tactic (She was very kind and  allowed me to share it with our readers).

Working with Tracy, we found the same challenges as working with any other small business owner with budget constraints. So, the main goal in these very common cases is to find ideas that:​

  • Grow your sales​
  • Are easy to implement
  • Don't take too much planning or setup
  • Are inexpensive

Does that sound familiar to you?

Bet it does.

Increase sales and Find New customers - your top two priorities.

To begin implementing our plan of action we decided to start tackling two main priorities:

  1. Increasing sales of her uniquely comfortable products to existing customers
  2. Finding new customers.

After brainstorming with Tracy, we came up with a new topic for her products:

'Getting caught out in your PJs'

We felt this cheeky theme would create some interest and hype around her business, particularly with people who like to wear PJs outside the bedroom. It would make prospects see that you could wear your Skirties at home during the day without having  to feel too embarrassed if visitors dropped in (does that resonate with you?). 

Above all else we wanted a campaign that:

  1. ​Highlighted the value of her product, and in turn
  2. Attracted the right kind of audience who would then become her potential new customers
  3. It would also be a reminder to existing customers about why they loved Skirties in the first place and why they would not hesitate buying them again.

So how did we translate our goals into a real like campaign?

Planting one single seed to make it grow four ways​

The following steps will show you how we stretched the 'Getting caught out in your PJs' idea and worked it into four different marketing strategies, all designed to generate more sales and repeat business.​

Sales Step One​. Let your customers do the work

Tracy's Facebook page has over 1,000 likes. We felt it was a good base to start with because if she could get some comments and sharing on Facebook, it would create some tracking and would help her grow her page out to the likers' tribes as well. 

Let's think about this for a second.​

On average, a Facebook user has 200 friends. Tracy has 1,000 likers, so that gives her a potential viral reach of 200,000 people. ​

How did we plan on getting out into the newsfeed of her liker's friends?

By encouraging them to comment on the page.

How did we do that?

Tracy decided to give away some candles as a prize for any comments, something she will not need to do in the future, as most of the time people love to share stories and opinions without a prize or incentive to do that.

To make sure that she got into the newsfeed of her likers, she also asked them to SHARE the post.​

Viral campaign ad

Skirties Sleepwear Facebook Post Asking for Funny Stories

She found that not only did this post get great comments, people also spent some time writing their story. They wanted to share the story, regardless of how long it took them to write it. 

how to get facebook comments

Step Two: Repurpose Facebook content as a blog post and work on SEO

Armed with many interesting and amusing stories from her Facebook likers, Tracey turned them all into a blog - www.skirties.com.au. And since these stories had already been written on a public Forum, she didn't really need to ask for permission to use them.

Adding content to a website that uses actual phrasing and words from existing and potential customers is not only a quick way to build content, but an excellent way of building organic SEO (search engine optimisation) because in SEO terms, many of the phrases that these people used would be considered 'long tail keywords'.

This amusing blog is the perfect platform to attract potential customers looking for her type of products in the future.

Blog created from stories collected from Facebook.

Step Three: Repurpose into an email and ask for the order

With the blog in place and all that interest generated from her activity in Facebook, it was time to drive some sales in the campaign – it was time to 'ask for the order'.

The next step was to write an email with users’ stories as the main point of interest.

The cheekiness and uniqueness of every single one of these stories gave Tracy a 'reason' to share them with her email newsletter subscribers and created an opportunity to highlight which products Tracy thought the readers might like to 'get caught out in'.

What did the email include?

  • Descriptions and images of several of her products
  • A direct Call To Action to buy the products from her website.
  • It also drove her newsletter readers over to her blog to read more stories.

The newsletter had the double benefit of moving people to her website, where they could browse through all the other products in the Skirties range.

Our main goal in writing this email for Tracy was to include several Calls to Action (i.e. asking for the order). So these were placed right next to the product and were highlighted by using a different colour ensuring the reader could not miss them.

Here’s a close up below to show you how this was done.

Ask for the order by email

A snapshot of the whole email with several products

When we wrote this email for Tracy, we wanted to have several calls to action (i.e. asking for the order). These were placed right next to the product and were in a different colour, to make sure they were obvious. I've included a close up below to show you how we did this.

How to write an email and ask for the order

A snippet of the email

​Step Four: Get free press to grow the business

All the hype provided by her Facebook, blog and email campaigns, gave Tracy a good reason to contact the press and leverage some free editorial around her products and business.

How?

We wrote a Press Release that started by highlighting those very funny customers’ stories, and then providing the 'solution' to their problems. In this case, the solution to “Getting caught out in your PJs” was to make sure you are wearing 'daywear' PJs. ​

That’s right - Press Releases announcing a new product generally fall on deaf ears.

However, a Press Release that gives journalists something new, interesting, amusing, newsworthy or dramatic, is sure to get the results you are after.

Affordable, clever marketing for small businesses – is this something you could apply to your business?

For similar marketing ideas and tips you’ll love, join our mailing list today. Simply scroll down and be part of the SpringintoSales community. Register now.

And if you are ready to grow your business quickly with well executed and practical advice, join Tracy and many other businesses like hers by working with me today.

Find out more about my services here.

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