Recently, we have been reminded of something we already knew that could change our business, and yours, forever. That thing is so simple and so obvious that you may already be doing it and don’t realize it yet. Chances are though that you are not likely to use it for the purposes we will discuss here. We’re talking about a customer list. Do you have and maintain a list of your customers, your leads, your prospects, and those who were customers but haven’t been in a while?

That list, divided up appropriately into the categories above, is what will see your business through this tough economic time that is 2022. If you weren’t broken by the pandemic, you could be by the high prices for goods or services you must purchase to provide for your business. But that list is your lifeline and chances are you are not using it to its full potential. We’ll start with how to develop a list and hope to pick up everyone along the way, then try to tackle why it’s so important.

Any contact list should start out as that, a way to contact people. It should have 4-5 columns depending on whether you are a B2C or B2B business. Name (can be divided into first and last of course), Business Name (if applicable), Phone (good phone to contact them directly), E-mail and a “tags” category we will use in a moment. You can make this on a spreadsheet, in Outlook or Gmail/Google Contacts, iCloud, or our Works CRM system if you’re one of our customers. Social media doesn’t really count as a Contact Manager but any contacts, friends or connections you have should be a part of your list with as much information above as you can harvest.

The “tag” column allows you to classify what stage of your relationship they are in. For example,a prospect, a lead, a current customer, a former customer, and a favorite customer. Classifying each of these types of customers lets you offer specific things to specific groups to help keep them in your business or reactivate them. We’ll dive into customer retention more in later posts.

Why do this? Two statistics should jump out at you from a blog post by CRM company Hubspot. It’s 6-7 times more expensive to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing one. This is also why our referral system works well and is included in all of our systems. Second,  we often quote that referred customers are more than 75% likely to buy if they are referred by a customer, on your list. Even past customers who may not have a need but had a good experience can be ambassadors for your business but not if they’re not contacted, or updated, or nurtured.

So your absolute best tool to generate sales and revenue for your company is possibly, and literally, right under your nose. If you don’t have a list then start making one and pull contacts from every place you possibly have. Then, when you’re ready, we can show you for free how to generate real sales from that list. To learn more click here.