Congratulations! You’ve made it through one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year. You worked hard to prepare your small business for Small Business Saturday (SBS), armed it to collect in-person and online leads and received your customers with open arms. Hopefully, you’re seeing the fruits of your labor in purchases, organic traffic, new contact data, click-through rates, etc. While we think all of that is worth celebrating, it’s not time to slow down—yet. In the final of our three-part SBS blog series, we’ll show you how to keep this momentum going through the end of the holidays and into the new year.
First up: track your interactions
If you incorporated any kind of digital contact-collecting tactics during SBS, like a landing page or email campaign, you should be using the data from these avenues of interaction to track your visitors’ behaviors. The further a lead has interacted with your business after the initial lead magnet, the hotter they are and the more likely they are to purchase from you.
Some benchmarks to track include:
Asset downloads: If your asset was downloaded, hooray! It could mean it’s helping your prospect find a solution for their needs. This lead is interested in your brand, so focus your efforts on nurturing him or her through the sales funnel.
Email opens: Whether or not an email was opened, or which ones were opened more than others, gives you valuable insight into what type of content is landing with your leads, and which kind could use more work.
Click-through to webforms: “Webform” is just another way to say digital contact form. When tracking this, you’re looking for whether a lead provided all their contact on the webform to retrieve your asset—you’d better have a follow-up plan for these people. Yet, even if they don’t submit their phone number for a call, they’re still showing a level of interest just by virtue of the fact that they clicked through to your form. Take advantage of this by adding them to a lead nurturing email follow-up campaign.
Request consultation: If a visitor has requested a consultation, act now. This is a contact you don’t want to lose track of because they could be ready to purchase.
Reply to your reviews
When you’re making an important investment or a significant purchase, do you look at online reviews on whatever it is you’re about to put money toward? Your prospects do.
Like word-of-mouth advertising, shoppers tend to trust and seek online reviews from real customers before they even visit your business. Take this as an opportunity to engage with both your satisfied customers and displeased visitors.
According to a survey by ReviewTrackers, an online review management tool, 52 percent of customers expect a response from businesses within seven days of writing a review, especially if it’s negative. If you receive a less-than-positive response from a visitor, be sure to thank them for their feedback. You should also show empathy in your response, suggest a solution to their issue, and offer to escalate the conversation offline to a phone call or direct message.
You should also respond to your positive reviews, too. Thank them for their remarks, show your appreciation for their business, and ask them for feedback on what made their experience so enjoyable (if they haven’t already shared that information with you).
Simply replying to your reviews shows your prospects and customers that you genuinely care about their experiences and needs, are listening to their feedback, and constantly trying to improve your service.
Follow up, follow up, follow up
If you haven’t already followed up with those who completed your lead capture form during SBS, stop reading this and do so now. Timeliness is of the utmost importance when following up with your leads. According to the Harvard Business Review, businesses that contacted their leads within an hour of their query were seven times more likely to qualify their leads than those that waited an hour or more, and 60 times more likely than companies that waited more than 24 hours.
Following up, whether by phone, email, or social media, helps cement your connection with your leads and builds their trust in you. It’s your job to reinforce that they’re making the right decision by doing business with you, so include verifiable results, testimonials, or metrics that emphasize your business promise in your follow-ups.
In our last SBS blog post, Get ready for In-Person and Online Leads on #SmallBizSaturday, we recommended deploying a marketing automation tool for the follow-up cadence needed to keep your leads on the line. When used properly, marketing automation allows you to create email campaigns that fire based on where your prospects have interacted with your digital marketing efforts.
Use social media to encourage repeat business
You’ve probably already been using your various social media platforms to advertise your promotions and encourage your followers to #shopsmall on #SmallBusinessSaturday. Don’t stop that engagement now. Use your various platforms to respond to the feedback or reviews you receive, and use them as another channel for customer service. You can also retweet or share your visitors’ and customers’ posts about your business that show their satisfaction.
Courtesy of Business2Community
Practicing this kind of engagement and interactions with your SBS visitors on social media shows you’re paying attention to what they’re saying about your business. It also helps to create a sense of community or familiarity between them and you, which encourages brand loyalty, repeat business, and word-of-mouth advertising organic of your own efforts.
Don’t forget to enjoy yourself
We know how hard small business owners and employees work, especially through the holidays, so we really want you to be able to sit back, relax, and focus on the important things in life. Set yourself up for this kind of success by tracking your leads, responding to your reviews, following up with your leads, and engaging on social media. When all's said and done, you’ll be enjoying that glass of eggnog in no time. Cheers to you and all your hard work!