Create An Advocate System For Client Building

Build Connections And Grow Your Business Through This Effective Marketing Strategy

San Diego, CA Are you struggling to find new ways to build your clientele or to create the ideal clientele for maximum business revenue and success? Lauren Gartland is the founder of Inspiring Champions, a business and coaching company offering live training seminars and coaching services to the professional beauty industry. She regularly advises clients on how to use an advocate system to successfully build their clientele. “Most beauty professionals have zero communications with their clientele. This system is the best marketing strategy to build relationships, stay connected and grow your business,” Gartland says.

The first step to build an advocate system is to put together a list of the 25 most important people in your life who are in a position to impact your business. If you don’t think you can come up with 25, then start with 5 and build up from there. Choose your most enthusiastic clients, business people in your neighborhood, or people who believe in you and your work. Surround yourself with those true fans. Gartland notes, “Know the difference between an advocate and a supporter. A supporter is someone who may be a regular client or business acquaintance yet is not fully invested in your success. An advocate is someone who will go out of their way to help you and see you succeed!”

The next step is to ask each person in your advocate system for three referrals. Your advocates should know your ‘defining statement,’ which is an exciting definition that vividly describes what you do. This way, your advocates can create enthusiasm when they tell people they know about your services. You should supply them with plenty of business cards to have on hand. Joining a local business networking group is a great way to meet advocates. Contact your local Chamber of Commerce to get a list and visit at least three to five groups before committing to one. The benefits of a networking group are that it brings together business people from different industries who want to tap into other business experts. It’s an inexpensive and effective way to get new clients as the members will work for free on your behalf. You’ll also have the opportunity to make new friendships and meet business people outside of your industry who will provide support and inspiration to help you grow your business.

The most important step in forming your advocate group is keeping in touch with them. However, your connection should come from an air of neutrality. Do not continually ask members of your group for something or just contact them when you need them. Give back by also working on their behalf and investing in their success as well. Advocate systems are about building relationships and staying connected. Gartland says, “Never let an advocate get more than 30 days away from you in communication. Find different ways to contact them and get creative by mixing it up with phone calls, postcards, holiday greetings, small gifts or homemade items. Send them regular news on your services, seasonal promotions, inspirational messages or other fun communications.”

The best mode of contact for your advocate system is through email communications, Facebook messages, Twitter or e-newsletters. Every beauty professional should invest in owning a computer and becoming proficient in these areas. If you are not computerized, make it a priority to do so. As your advocate system and your clientele grows, you will need a simple way to capture their contact information and keep in touch regularly. Being computerized will be invaluable. Consider it a tool for building your business and get help if you need to for keeping your database updated and sending out regular communications. With today’s smartphones, you may not even need to own a computer to be able to email or join online social networking groups. You can hand your new clients your Blackberry or iPhone and have them enter their contact information themselves while you prepare for their service, giving you a technological edge.

Gartland concludes, “The difference between good and great is consistency. Good never got anyone to the Olympics! Be consistent with your client communications and with building relationships for your advocate system. Being passive will not bring you the dream business that you want. Get out of the bleachers and onto the playing field, with the champions!”

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Inspiring Champions is a business and coaching company offering live training camps, coaching and mentoring services, webinars, audio tapes and educational resources.

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Jenny Hogan is the Media Director at Marketing Solutions, Inc., a full-service marketing, advertising and PR agency specializing in the professional beauty business.

For more information:
email MktgSols@MktgSols.com.

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