Learning how to build your customer base is the cornerstone of thriving in your industry. The longevity of a business relies on sales and customers, so what if you could expand your consumer base? Even connect with customers outside of your target audience?
Try diversifying your customers.
Diversifying your customers mean reaching out to consumers beyond the “regulars.” Perhaps you could sell your product to both the young millennial and the elderly customer, or offer your services to animal lovers and vegans. To diversify your customers is to broaden your target audience, and thus how to build your customer base effectively.
A company should never rely on one customer base for the majority of its revenue. In an uncertain economy and with the holiday season approaching, diversifying your customer base is essential.
How to Build Your Customer Base: Never Rely on One Customer
For the longevity of your business, avoid relying on one customer to contribute to your revenue. Try broadening your audience to prepare for different seasons and reasons why people shop for certain products and services. Fall, for instance, has parents and children shopping for back-to-school, while the beginning of summer attracts shoppers seeking beach and outdoor gear.
If the majority of your sales depend on one customer—say, elderly customers over the age of 65—then you would most likely lose business during the fall and summer shopping cycles. Rather, your product or service would need to be tailored toward the elderly cohort.
Expanding your target audience would also cover all of your bases when it comes to achieving brand recognition. When you sell products and services to multiple customers, for example, you may be branching out to those who live in different geographic locations, which is a huge benefit to your company in the long-run.
Diversifying Your Customers for the Holiday Season
Businesses are cyclical; therefore, diversifying your customers will be important for the holiday season. During the holiday season, people will shop around for the same item at differing times. Some look to purchase electronics during Black Friday while others buys electronics toward the New Year.
For businesses, the holidays are a season of highs and lows. When diversifying for the holidays, consider your budget. Businesses tend to cut budgets around the holiday season, and to make up for a possible deficit in revenue, consider diversifying your customers. If you focus on earning the majority of your revenue from one type of consumer, then when it comes time to cut your expenditure budget, you may be losing out on what you can offer to one specific audience.
People have different needs for shopping around during the holidays because many buy gifts for others. While customers may not necessarily need a specific product or service themselves, they will most likely purchase them for their friends and family as gifts. Take advantage of seasonal customers and use the holidays as a reason to diversify your customers.
How Businesses Can Prepare for a Recession
Think about how advantageous it would be for your business to diversify your customers before an economic downturn. To ensure your company is prepared for a possible recession, diversify products, services and customers. Diversifying products allows you to reach as many consumers as you can by fulfilling more than one need.
One way to diversify products is to offer the same item seasonally to attract and retain customers. Think: the same product, but slightly adjusted to meet seasonal needs. At Yankee Candle, for example, certain scents are tied to specific seasons like pumpkin for fall, Evergreen for winter, and wildflower for summer. Though candles are one product, adjusting the scent to correlate with the appropriate season continues to attract and retain customers.
When diversifying your customers, consider growing with your main target audience to retain your main source of revenue while expanding to other consumers. Gap, for instance, targets families of all types through Gap, Gap Baby and Gap Kids. Even during a recession, Gap has been able to survive while other competitors have been closing due to the fact that they appeal to consumers of all ages.
Diversifying Your Customers: When is it Too Late?
If you are already working toward diversifying your customers, then continue to do so until you feel you have maximized your audience.
For those who are looking to diversify the business, one of the best ways to start is by advertising via multiple media. Each medium provides the opportunity to reach a different customer, so try advertising your company through a printed newsletter, broadcast television commercial, social media, or digital advertisement.
It is never too late to diversify customers, and there is always room to improve the ways in which you can diversify your business to ensure long-term success.
Unsure of how to build a customer base? If you’re looking for new ways to reach different audiences, give our team a call at 813-990-0501 or reach out via our contact form. We’re happy to provide a free 30-minute consult!