To Mr. and Mrs. Smith,
So Johnny has brought to my attention that he has asked if you would be willing to consider establishing a bigger presence online for your store, but that you have some concerns and are wary of how technology would help your business, much less trying to maintain it constantly.
Let me start by saying that I know it’s a daunting concept to put your business out there on the Internet not sure of what might happen or whether or not it would even work, but I can also say beyond a shadow of a doubt that it worth the risk because if done correctly you could improve on your existing customer loyalty, and gain some word of mouth which would lead to new customers not just locally but maybe even state or nationwide.
As an example of this I would like to show you what my business plan would be to help you advertise your business on various social networking services, bear in mind these are all simply ideas:
Facebook: This would be the start of the framework, as I would make a lot of the other services I would suggest all feature here for all your customers and potential followers to see. Here you could focus on customer loyalty being your company has been around for a long time with a great deal of history. Wouldn’t it be fun to share some of the stories you remember of your customers while also getting to see their point of view?
This would be the focus as loyal customers would immediately wish to friend you just to see if maybe you have some kind of anniversary or seasonal sale that they can capitalize on and therefore get the chance to come visit you again. Or you could possibly even reward their loyalty as a customer not just through a gift card or something like that, but by asking via facebook what are your best moments in life that we have been able to help you enjoy like say a wedding and then ask them to share the story via a kind of contest and the best story gets some kind of coupon or one free repair job.
Twitter: Twitter would be a great way to focus in on gaining new customers, and being most buyers these days like their sales pitch to be “short, sweet, and to the point” this would also be a great service to test out new slogans and catchphrases which could be broadcast out via twitter. This would also be a great venue to advertise a sale in the store on this day this could potentially get new customers to check out your store, where you can also pamper them a bit by saying since they found out about you on twitter they get a coupon for say 10% off on their first purchase.
Now just as this could work locally you could also do this concept online where you could broadcast that on Valentine’s Day were selling unique custom-made diamond earrings but only over the internet. This would work in two ways for you first it lets the niche market of custom jewelry fans out there that you do that as well, and second it’s a great way to test out new custom designs for jewelry to see how popular they would be. Heck you could probably start with just 5 of them and see how they sell if they don’t it’s not a horrible loss, but if they sell out then you can provide them again say with only 10 available.
Pinterest: This is the place I would do a lot of the online advertising I was talking about with twitter and would definitely emphasize your custom-made items. There is a niche market for these kinds of objects especially if you’re willing to accept ideas of what a customer may want, so for example if a customer gets to design the piece themselves or one of your employees got creative one day and you liked what he/she came up with. You could then in turn put it up on Pinterest in short quantity for a short time and see how well it would sell. This is also where you could potentially start gaining some state or even nationwide sales as people might want to come to you for other jobs they want to do and like the work you’ve done for them on other projects.
Vine/YouTube: This would be a two-pronged venture on my end simply because small companies these days like to give their customers a “behind-the-scenes” perspective on how said company works. The same could be applied to your store as you could use Vine to do a quick reveal on the latest new designs you’ve come up with that would go on sale on Pinterest. Or at anniversary time you could ask your customers to answer a few questions of why they love your company in front of a camera, then post it on YouTube to later show on your Facebook page. This would be a concept to help your customers get to know your employees and feel even more attached to your company and want to continue to buy jewelry from you.
Flickr: This would be yet another way to advertise either your current products or possible new custom designs for jewelry, being you can take a picture of them and show them off via Flickr to your Facebook and Twitter feeds. This would again work more in the favor of having sales increase locally if say you were only selling this design for 7 days, or if you sold them online only via Pinterest. This could also be a way to broadcast whom the employee of the month is or if some major event is happening to them like say Joe is a father for the second time.
Now I know I’ve only shown how this could positively for you but it can also go negatively as well. Specifically if you’re wishing for an instant profit on this you might be mistaken sure it could happen but more than likely this would take time to create the framework and possibly even the interest in what I have been suggesting to do.
The advice that I would on this matter again if I was the person to do this is I would advise you to start in a small way and gauge the interest as you go along that way your company isn’t suffering a horrible loss in the process and you can still keep business as usual. At the most for a while you would have to treat this as a side project and let things build with time for how long it will take them to build. Also there is a possibility that this wouldn’t happen at all that’s why if you start small it won’t hurt your company that badly, so this protects your business while also testing the waters for a new potential audience for your product.
Well I think I’ve talked your ear off at this point but if you wish to speak with me more on these concepts I would be more than happy to answer any questions you have on the matter I’m sure Johnny has given you my contact information as I asked him to do. In the meantime consider my ideas and see if you would like to try and implement something to this effect or also at the end of this E-Mail I will leave some resources for you to look into as well. Thanks so much for taking the time to listen to my ideas!
P.S. Here are the Articles I told you about: