To Grow Creative Business Profits, Find Your Customers

Just because millions of people access the Internet doesn’t mean they’ll check out your blog, visit your website or even find out about your products and services, let alone purchase them.  The good news is that strategies to getting the results you want as a creative business leader haven’t changed, not much, anyway. 

Creative Business Profits Picture by Stilfehler at Wikimedia Commons

Where Do Your Valuable Customers Hang Out

One business sales strategy fact that hasn’t changed is that you still have to find your customers.  You got it right.  The Internet didn’t change that.  Perhaps nothing will.  Instead of taking the time to fill out long product patent applications, filing copyrights, hiring bloggers to create content for your company, etc. find out who your customers are (who’s most likely to purchase your products).  Then find out where these folks hang out (politicians might do this better than business owners!) and connect with them there.  Stop demanding that customers find and come to you just because you paid a lot of money for a high tech website or went out and hired a lot of workers! 

To find your customers you’re gonna need to know your products (e.g. books, jewelry, web design services, computers, university courses) from top to bottom.  Folks who’d plop down $1800 for a desktop computer might not pay you as much as $600 for a laptop if they’re adamant about not working away from home, don’t like laptop keyboards and feel a larger computer box offers them more benefits than a narrow laptop does (even if it really doesn’t).  Some people still listen to their music on record players.  If you’d have kept your old albums, imagine how much money you could be making providing hard-to-find music and customized services for this crowd.  And not everyone has a flat screen television, but I’m getting side tracked. 

Make It Easy For Your Customers to Buy From You

Here are a few steps you can take to find your customers (and trust me – if you had enough passion about a product or service to create it, there are people who share your passion and who will support you and purchase your product and/or service; of course, if you never find these people, you’ll probably always doubt that): 

  • Create products and/or services you’re passionate about (this is an effective way to find your customers as a creative business leader because the chances of you attending conferences, seminars, festivals and other events that are connected with your passions are high; other attendees at these events are likely your potential customers)
  • Search for events, discussion forums, books, magazines, television shows, radio stations and programs, newspapers, professional associations, etc. that feature products and/or services similar to the ones you offer (feature, not just mention).  Write articles for these periodicals being sure to include your contact information and website URL or small business street address.  You can also schedule informational interviews with radio show hosts, newspaper journalists, etc. affiliated with these organizations
  • Ask your friends, relatives and neighbors where they go to get products and/or services like the ones you offer.  For example, if you sell telephone headsets you could ask people you know to tell you the top three places they go to when they want to purchase telephone headsets.  Consider doing joint advertisements or cross advertisements with owners of these establishments
  • Attend large group functions and ask the functions’ coordinators where they go to purchase items, similar to the products you sale, in bulk.  Again, try to work out a joint deal with the establishment the coordinators are currently purchasing from or offer the coordinators a better deal than they’re currently receiving 

Make it your business to find your customersSure.  A lot of them will accidentally stumble across you.  However, you can sell a lot more products and/or services if you find your customers, meet them where they frequently hang out and put your creative business products and/or services in front of them there.  It sure beats throwing darts in the dark with a blindfold on, hoping to hit the bulls-eye. 

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