As a business owner looking to earn more income, one of the easiest ways to do this to increase your ROI, your Return On Investment. To put it simply, the more you can earn in exchange for your time, energy, effort and expense, the more your business will be able to operate leanly, meanly and efficiently, leading to lower costs and higher income.
Here are three easy ways to increase your ROI without increasing your workload.
To leverage means to use a tool or asset to make your work easier and gain some form of advantage. Think of all the tools and software you currently have in your business. Are you really making the most of them? Or is there more value you can squeeze out of them with just a little additional work and some creativity?
For example, think of the content you create for your site. What if you were to also use it for your email marketing, social networking, PowerPoint presentations, quizzes, fact sheets and tips sheets? Take that one set of data and transform it into a podcast, video, checklist, or other item for your intended audience. Remember, people learn in a lot of different ways, so offering them free and paid items in the format they are interested in should keep them coming back for more. These items also make great free bonuses, handouts, items your affiliates can use, and more.
Take a survey of all of your assets. Do not just list your computers and software. Also think about the following items as assets:
* Business relationships and partnerships
* Current customer communications
* Knowledge and skills
* Marketing tactics
* Policies and procedures
Then make a few notes next to each about how you can get more out of that asset easily. For example, if you have an association with a graphic designer and you are a writer, you can leverage your relationship and provide more services to your clients by referring them to the designer, and vice versa. The designer will often have clients who are eager for good content related to their niche, so everyone cooperating is a win for everyone.
You can leverage your partnership and cross promote. You can leverage your partnership into a referral reward system. There are many opportunities to make the most of your current business relationships and partnerships by staying in touch, telling them what is new or what you are working on, and asking them if they either need your services, or know anyone who does. Word of mouth marketing is very powerful and could get you more clients easily without you spending any money to get them.
Another example might be leveraging your current customer communications. Maybe you have an existing newsletter that is just trundling along with nothing too exciting in it, or a blog that is performing well but not making the kind of money you were hoping for.
Supercharge your newsletter or blog with guest content from your readers or a top person in your niche or industry. Host a sweepstakes or free giveaway. Give them a chance to connect with you as an affiliate so they will get a special code. When they pass it along to others, they will get credit for it through an an additional entry to the sweepstakes. This is another form of word of mouth marketing that earns money for all parties, and helps people find what they really need and want online, so everyone wins.
2-Make the most of your data
Your current data and analytics are marvelous tools for increasing your return on investment if you track and test your online success. You can use this information to dig deep and determine what strategies are working and which ones are not. You can then use the information to fine tune and optimize the strategies that are working, for even higher conversions and return on investment.
For example, if you’re spending a lot of money and energy on a PPC (pay-per-click) program, you can use your data to eliminate the ads that aren’t performing up to par. You can then use the data to create PPC ads that have a higher click-through and conversion rate. You can also use what you learn to improve your social media messaging to drive more traffic to your site, for more sales.
Sometimes a tiny tweak or two is all it takes to turn a donkey into a thoroughbred. If your sales letters are not performing as well as you might wish, choose one you know there is a market for, and track and test with a view to boosting sales and turning it into a star in your product line. Not all of them will be, but any sale is better than none and it is better to expend a little more effort to boost your ROI, than give up on the product and write off all your efforts as a waste of time.
3-Plan all future products as assets
One of the biggest mistakes we see business owners make is in getting carried away with a supposedly brilliant idea without doing the research first to discover if there is actually a paying market for the product or service. Someone might have already tried the idea, and failed. There might be an item like it on the market, with flat sales. So unless their item is definitely superior, me too marketing is not likely to work that well. Some markets are full of people only looking for free things or bargain basement prices. Simple but effective market research can tell you how large the market is and how much they might be willing to pay.
If you are already selling products and services, look at the ones that are the most popular. Can you spin off any new ones from them? Create an intermediate or advanced version? Or add more value to the existing offer, to come up with a silver, gold and platinum package at price points that will increase the average dollar value of each customer?
Can you bundle items together as super value deals or seasonal and holiday promotions? All of these types of sales strategies, package deals and bundles give you the chance to make the most of what you have while increasing perceived value in the eyes of your customers.
As we said above in relation to content, you can also easily increase the value of any offer with free bonuses. Image you have a 50-page special report on a hot topic in your niche that you are selling. Create a short version to give away to boost your email subscriber list, turn it into emails, an ecourse, blog posts, articles for article marketing sites, social media content, and more. Then the time you spent will be more valuable because you will be creating so many potential new streams of traffic and possibly even revenue to your site.
Also remember the 80/20 rule in business, that 80% of your income comes from 20% of your customers, a solid, loyal core of users who can boost your ROI even more provided that you pay attention to what they really need.
A lot of business owners make the mistake of spending so much time chasing new business that they neglect their existing customers, at their peril. Just think about it. You see a great new deal on cable TV from your current company at a fraction of what you are paying. This can lead to resentment and a lower perceived value-if they can really make a profit on the service at only $10 a month for 12 months with the price locked in, why am I paying $100 per month, is a logical question.
So by all means craft great deals that will entice new people to try out your products and services, but survey your existing customers regularly with the question, how can we help? What more would you like us to offer to make your life easier.
Planning ahead based on what has happened in the past in terms of sales and in the present regarding your existing customers can be one of the best ways to ensure a bright future if you make the most of the assets you have and lever them to create more.
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