Debbie Mayo-Smith

A motivational speaker gives her tips on business success

Debbie Mayo-Smith: Use downtime more productively

One of the most important things you have to do is  learn how to market yourself. Photo / Thinkstock
One of the most important things you have to do is learn how to market yourself. Photo / Thinkstock

Want a surefire way to increase both revenue and income? First I bet you might have a quiet period in the day, or perhaps a day of the week where you consistently have a lighter work load?

Next establish a few processes and procedures for staff or yourself to use these quiet moments more productively. Pick up the phone and start calling past customers?

First, decide what you want to achieve. Survey them about how they liked doing business with you? Add value with a personal hello from your business? A special offer to bring in more repeat business? How about reviewing your database and calling to fill in any holes you have?

Write a script or two for yourself or other staff. Ask them to document the results. You'd be surprised at the amount of business that is just waiting for you at the other end of the phone. Be sure to compliment or even reward staff for the new work you've asked them to do.

A simple idea, easy to implement and use if relevant is to annually wish your customers a happy birthday or anniversary of a special occasion. You could also include a special offer. With the information in a database, or perhaps put in separately in an excel spread sheet with contact details, the quiet time can be used to sort the list and do a mail out to those with current birthdays.

Alternatively you can create an annual recurring Task in Outlook or Gmail (or To Do in Lotus) for the customers you would like to send the birthday wish too. When they're due, a prompt pops up. Again the quiet time can be used to email, phone or create the letter to the customer.

Written by international speaker and bestselling author Debbie Mayo-Smith. For more tips, over 500 how-to articles visit Debbie's article webpage.

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