It may still feel like winter. The skies might still be grey. But spring starts on the 20th March and that means there will be plenty of pools to open and hot tubs to service.
There’s money to be made and businesses to grow, so you better get ready to make the very best of it.
Friday 6th April to Monday 9th April 2012
That’s when the Easter Bank holiday weekend is and that, if the last few years are anything to go by, is going to be one of the busiest weekends of the year and it really is just around the corner.
There are things in business you can put off or postpone or do when you want, but the Easter weekend isn’t one of those things.
Some regular customers are going to be coming through your doors and hopefully some new faces as well. So, what do you need to get ready to make the most of that?
Here’s a checklist of some of the things you might want to have prepared complete with links to articles that will give you more tips and advice on each one:
Open days and wet testing.
People are going to be looking for things to do on that weekend. The garden centres are going to be busy; your showroom should be too. Invite people to come and jump in a hot tub. Letting customers experience something is one of the most powerful ways of encouraging them to buy.
Events and shows.
Once again, people will be looking to go out with the family. Are there any events or shows in your area that you could have a presence at? There’s advice on how to get the most out of an event if you follow this link and much of that advice will apply to an open day or wet test offer as well.
Press releases and PR.
When you do an open day or take a stand at a show, it’s important to make sure that as many people know as possible beforehand and PR is one of the best ways to do that. Get a press release written and get it to the right people. Want to know how best to do that? Just click on this link.
Your local paper is going to be very well thumbed over the Easter weekend and so it is an ideal time to run an advert. You might want to advertise a special offer or promotion or you might want to keep your business front of mind with existing customers and introduce yourself to some new ones. There are hints and tips on how to design a powerful press advert if you follow this link.
So, open days and local shows and events supported by great PR and powerful advertising should get as many people as possible walking through your doors or even dipping their toes in the water.
There are plenty of things that you can do to maximise on that increased traffic.
Use cross selling to get as much value out of each customer as possible.
Cross selling is easy to do, but far too few of us take advantage of it. It’s a simple enough idea; someone comes in for chemicals so why not see if they could be interested in some new pool furniture or perhaps the latest hot-tub toy as well? There is more about cross selling here.
Make sure your customers stay as loyal as possible.
It costs a lot more to attract new customers than it does to maintain existing ones so every new customer that all this activity gets you is well worth keeping. When you are busy, it’s easy to just serve one new face and then move on to the next but if you take a minute or two to get their details and some contact information then you can take action later to make sure that they keep on coming back to you. There are some great tips on maintaining customer loyalty here.
Make sure that busy weekend keeps you busy throughout the year.
You’ll have seen some old faces and some new ones; you want to stay in touch with all of them. Keeping an up-to-date and accurate database of your customers is the best way to do that and there are some insights about Customer Relationship Management (CRM) if you follow this link.
We’ve talked a lot about customers coming to you, but as spring begins and pools need opening, you may well be going to see some of your customers and there is an opportunity there as well.
Incentivise your service engineers to look for products that need replacing or could be upgraded
That point of contact with your customer could be the opportunity you need to sell them something like the water-saving MultiCyclone or one of the new, retro-fit Badu counter-current units.
The Easter weekend is the best possible opportunity to kick-start your season and set you up to keep your business growing for the whole year.
There is a lot of work to do but it’s work and effort that will pay dividends.