I don't know about you and how long you've been running your business, but my business started in 2001. This is about 16 years I've been doing business. Over the course of that time, I've accumulated a lot of assets. Some of it's hardware, software, what have you. Some of it's obsolete, but I can tell you there are three things that I want to talk about today that are assets that you have in your business that may be going unused. These are often untapped, hidden gems within your business that can reap HUGE REWARDS!
Hidden Gem In Your Accounting Software
The first one is your customer list. Now, granted, 16 years ago when I started doing business card CDs, those people may or may not be good potential customers for what I'm doing now, which is online marketing strategy. Doing social media, and email marketing, and websites. They may be, they may not be. When I was doing DVD ROMs, CD ROMs, and stuff like that. Some of them may have moved on, some of them may have closed. The bottom line is you have an asset in those people.
What can you do with that asset? Well first and foremost, if you're using something like QuickBooks, Fresh Books, or something like that, you have a database of people that have already purchased from you. If you're running an online sales page, or an E-commerce page, you have people that have purchased from you. I can tell you that most people will find it a heck of a lot easier to sell to people that have bought from them before, than trying to find new customers. As a matter of fact, I think it takes about 10 times more effort to get a new customer to purchase, than to convince an old customer that maybe it's time to purchase again.
Now sure, some of them have probably moved on, but there's probably a good chunk of people that at least would like to hear from you. What do you do with this list? Well the first thing I suggest that you do is to export it into some kind of spreadsheet. Put it into an Excel spreadsheet, or if you're on a Mac, put it into a Numbers spreadsheet. That's an asset that you have created. This customer list can then be imported into a whole bunch of other things. For example, you could take that list, and import it into LinkedIn. LinkedIn gives you the ability to upload a file, and what it will do is it will go through all of the emails that are in that list and say, “This person is on LinkedIn, or they're not on LinkedIn. Or maybe they've changed their emails, or changed jobs.” It will allow you to connect with your customers.
Use The List To Spread The Word
What can you do with those people? Well, one of the things I suggest that you do is maybe open up a business page — or even better yet, a group — and invite those people to like the group, join the group, and keep the conversations going. Now, not everybody's going to come to it. If you're going to invite them to a group, do it in a personal way. Go to each one of them (now, if you have hundreds, it may take some time; get a virtual assistant, whatever), but get it done. Talk to those people, invite them to a group, and then continue the conversations there. See if there are things that you're already doing, like I'm doing this podcast, and I do blogs. Maybe there's a way that they would be interested in finding that information there.
That's one thing that you can do with your customer list from QuickBooks. You can also import it into Facebook, and create something called a “lookalike list.” You can go into Facebook and import those people, and create a list. You could email them inside of Facebook via an ad and say, “Hey, I'd love to connect with you again. Come like my business page, come join my closed Facebook group.” There are tons of things that you can do with that. That customer list is a huge asset that maybe you're using, maybe you're not using.
The next thing you can do with that list, and the second thing I really want to talk about, is you could take that list and import your contact list into an email program. I use AWeber, but there are tons of them out there. There's MailChimp, there's Drip, there's Get Response, there's Icontact, Emailcontact — I mean, whatever flavor of email program that you want. You can import your list in there, and then send them an email. Say, “Hey …” This is the best thing you can do. “I'm sorry I haven't connected with you in awhile. I'd love to connect again. Would you have time for a quick phone call, or do you want to still be on this list? If not then unsubscribe. If you like this list, then I will email you some great content every single week.” The first thing you should do is say, “I'm sorry I haven't talked to you in awhile.” If you do that to that list, some people will unsubscribe. That's okay; they're not interested.
Some people will stay on your list, and some people will contact you. Maybe they'll find you on Facebook, or LinkedIn, or Twitter, or just respond back to the email and say, “Hey, let's do a phone call.” At least you're using that list in a way to communicate with them on a regular basis. Now, I do a weekly email broadcast to all of my lists, including my past clients. Now, my broadcast includes my two podcasts, my blog, and any speeches or presentations that I'm giving. Occasionally these people who I haven't worked with for years will show up. They'll show up by reading the content, listening to the podcast, or even coming to a presentation. As a matter of fact, I've used that to re-initiate what I'm doing today with a handful of clients, that didn't even realize that I do training through the Bacon System, or have a weekly mastermind like the Bacon Weekly Mastermind.
Some of them have joined up because of that contact that I gave them, that opportunity. Did some people unsubscribe? Yes. But that's okay, because they're just not interested in what you have today. It's up to you to give them the opportunity to choose.
Repurposing Old Content
The third thing that I want you to think about is all of the content that you've generated over the course of how many years? Now again, I've got 16 years of content. It is in the form of videos, audios, courses, E-books, blog posts, quotes — I mean I've got all this great content. Think about ways that you can repurpose some of that content.
I have so many different websites. I've got one for my books, which is NotAboutYou.com. I've got B2b-IM.com, where my blogs are. I've got the Bacon Podcast, which is BaconPodcast.com. All of those have content that I've created that are still up there in the form of blog posts, quotes, podcasts, you name it. That content can be repurposed. It could be put up in those email broadcasts that you do. You could go back and say, “This is what's happening this week. Here's a quote that I did back in (whenever, you don't even have to say the date)“. You can reuse those things because chances are it's going to be new to some of those people. You can use that in both your social media, and in your email list.
Think about taking some of that content and maybe forming it into a freemium, or giveaway. You could turn it into something that is an asset now, that maybe wasn't an asset than. Think about repurposing some of that content, and use that to reconnect with some of your audience. Give it away! Just say, “Hey look. I took all this content that I've been working on, and I want to be able to give it to you for free to let you know what I'm doing now.” Do that specifically to your customers and say, “I just want to say thank you for being a past customer.” Then you might have the opportunity to invite them to a presentation, to a webinar, to something that will help educate them as to the way that your business has changed and evolved.
Those three things are something that you need to think about. First off, make sure that you take your contact list from your QuickBooks, or whatever kind of accounting system you're using, and put that to use. Then add them to an email list and see if maybe you can use that to continue to communicate with them. Then feed them with new content, but also don't disregard the past content that you have. It's your opportunity to make what's old new again.