We asked one of our friends, Mike Karlsrud who is an expert in the sales cycle to give us a series of posts about buying cycles. This is the first in a series of finding and keeping patients.
There are six phases in the buying cycle. It begins with the prospect or customer first knowing about you. Today more than ever the concept of “knowing” has changed from the traditional way of doing business. It used to be “knowing” was just where are you located? Who owns the company? And what eyecare services did you provide.
Today, “knowing” is all of that and how do I find you on the web? What are people saying about you? Who are you aligned with? What differentiates you from everyone else?
The challenge to businesses today is cutting through the clutter so people can find you and then get to know you. Putting up a webpage and keeping it current and fresh is mandatory in todays new world of work. It is the new “Yellow Pages.” However, unlike the “Yellow Pages” of old, people search the world to find you, not just the book they have on their desk. Perhaps the biggest misconception about the “know” phase of buying is that “if you put up a webpage, they will come.” It simply isn’t true. You must then tell folks that you have a web presence and how to find you through the clutter.
There are many strategies to help you accomplish you goal of awareness.
First, if you launch a new web page, tell the trades! Release a press release. They are free of charge and it is the best way to get your name in print.
Second, take your current customer list, or utilize a third party vendor, and send a email blast announcing that you have arrived.
Third, get on social media. Put up a FaceBook page and invite all your customers to find you and “like” you. Then, leverage your new found fame. With each “like” comes a new network of colleagues, friends and influencers that you now have exposure.
Fourth, every brand needs to be recognized, whether it be by color, logo, or imagery. Do some quick, inexpensive print ads that help build your impressions in the minds of the industry. In the future, business will belong to those who go after it and invest in their own brand, not the ones wait for it to come to them. Knowing starts simply with just being “found.”
Guest Post by: Mike Karlsrud is an optical professional who “makes brands come alive” for optical practices nationwide. He is owner of