Everyone resolves to do things better when a new year rolls in. Here are 4 things that people always talk about making a focus for their trade shows, but in the business of day-to-day work get forgotten by February:

1. See if my clients can send me more clients

Everyone dreams about gaining business from referrals. But what specific actions has your business taken to attract referrals from your current customer base? Do your current clients know what would make  a good new client for you?

  • Do your clients know you would like to grow your business?
  • Do they know your full list of services on offer?
  • Do you have a process that makes referring easy?

2. Start giving back to the community

Taking a simplified, black-and-white view of your community, do you think people would consider your businesses a givers or taker? To have a successful business you must already have people in your community supporting your business. What are you doing in return? In return for the community in general. You might already support causes and charities, but are people aware of that?

3. Find Your Target Audience

Common thinking would be that any customer is a good customer. But have you spent the time trying to pinpoint who the most ideal customer is, and how to gain more of those?

Instead of broadly and ineffectively casting a wide net, take the time to define your target audiences so that your marketing  efforts are focused enough to have a meaningful effect for your business. Determining exactly who your target markets are — starting with the who, when, how, and why — gives your business the benefit of being able to appeal to those most likely to engage with you. No business can’t be everything to everyone, so don’t try.

Do the research, identify your key personas, and run all of your promotions and messaging with this in mind.  If you use specific bait you might catch less total fish, but you’ll catch more of the right fish.

4. Communicate Better

Focus on quality over quantity. There is a fine balance between being informative and being obnoxious. How can you curate your communication to be interesting, timely information that encourages your audience to interact with you or share your content?

Quick ways to do this via social media:

  • Respond to comments on your posts.
  • Leave comments and like content on other pages.
  • Include personal notes on pictures or posts that you share.
  • Take the time to make a few real connections every day and you’ll see your relationships strengthen.