Let ’em Know What You Do

Over the weekend, I went with my twenty-one year old daughter to help her buy her first new car.  Normally you would expect me to rant about poor customer service, but I have to say that overall this wasn’t a bad experience.  It went much better than my own car-buying adventure last fall.

My daughter is a waitress at a sports bar/restaurant.  Not to brag, but she’s a gorgeous girl, the type that you remember. [Fortunately she takes after her mother.]  I bring this up because most of the salesmen at the dealership where she ultimately bought her car recognized her from the restaurant.    Apparently it’s a hangout for car salesman. 

The point is this.  Megan had no idea that any of them sold cars.  One of them is even the brother of another employee of the restaurant.  For the cost of a five cent business card, any one of them could have had the sale!  That’s a shame.  Not only did they miss this sale, but how many people does a typical waiter or waitress, especially in a casual, neighborhood kind of place, talk to on an average day?  How many waiters, waitresses, and bartenders in a place like that are young people, making decent money, possibly students, who either are or soon will be in the market for a car?  How many more sales might be out there, just waiting for someone to make a referral?

Of course, this leads to the question, How many people do you meet on a typical day at THEIR place of business?  Do they know what you do?  Have you given them your card and asked them to come see you when they’re in the market for what you sell?  Have you asked them to pass your card along to a friend?  If not, you’re leaving more on the table than just a tip for the waitress. 

Our friend Bob Negin suggests that you hand out gift certificates; not coupons that require a purchase, but gift certificates.  The object is to attract customers to your store.  How much is it worth to have someone new visit your business?  $5.00?  $10.00?  Only you can answer the question.  But a free gift, just for visiting, is definitely going to improve your traffic.  Turning the visitors into customers is YOUR job.

To build your business, you have to be a walking advertisement.  There shouldn’t be anyone that you meet that doesn’t know what you do for a living.

One Response

  1. Mike,

    Reading your post based upon the carnival

    Really liked your article! You have to ask for the business.

    In that same carnival was a highly related article on how to create awesome business cards. Thought your readers might want to know.


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