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Steve Marr Blog

Steve Marr's contributions
Category >> Getting and Keeping Customers
May 24

Don’t Market to Everyone

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

At times I review a client’s marketing materials. Frequently the sales pitch is too broad.  The client is trying to reach everybody in town. As a result they will likely snare fewer customers. I believe the issue is that the businesses failed to properly identify the target customer; therefore, they really have no idea who they’re trying to reach.  The result is wasted advertising and fewer customers.

My marketing strategy is to think through who my target customer is.  I need to identify the exact person I want to reach, the person who will buy my product or use my service. Then, I write my ad copy specifically for them. 

Living in Arizona I worked with an exterminator who told me that there was a specific part of town with a severe rat infestation which was annoying and destructive. “Nancy” was going to mail their standard brochure to this area in an effort to snag new customers.  I suggested that rather than send their regular piece, they needed to write something specific on eradicating pack rats and send it instead.  Prospective customers concerned about rats would not be as concerned about scorpions or other insects their service brochure addressed. Their target customer was those who have problems with rat infestation. After changing their brochure and sending it, the response rate was considerably higher than expected.  I believe the reason is because they effectively identified their target customer.

May 11

Paying for Advertising Results

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

A general rule I share with clients is that 50% of advertising cost brings little results. It means that business too frequently wastes advertising dollars.

I was talking to one business person who spent $450 a month on a Yellow Pages ad. That is $5,400 dollars a year, more than pocket change for most of us. I asked the business owner how many calls the Yellow Pages ad generated and how many of those calls resulted in business? After thinking through my question the owner acknowledged little or no business came from the ad. 

Apr 21

Establish Quality Standards

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

Frequently I hear business people make statements about their high quality, how they do the best job, that their delivery is better than their competition or that nobody does it better than they do. While the statements are impressive, they don’t tell me much about quality.

Mar 20

Improve Your Email Responses

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

Every day you probably send emails and would like a timely response. I’ve learned two techniques that are easy to apply to improve your response consistency.

Based on a study from Boomerang, a business that creates apps, the most effective ending for an email is “Thanks in advance.” This ending out-performs some of the more common endings such as regards, thanks, cheers and sincerely. The study showed that you can gain as much as 20% improvement on your response rate, a significant number.

Mar 02

Customer Sales

Posted by Steve Marr in Untagged 

From time to time I receive questions about the value of holding sales to attract customers. Some business owners feel it is a waste of time, or they don’t like to discount product. Others believe the concept may work, but they’re not quite sure how to implement a good sale.
Sales do work. Everyone wants to believe they are getting a bargain. One tactic is to sell some items at or below cost and focus on these bargains. Your goal is to lose a little on the sales, but bring customers in the door who will buy other things to increase profit.