All you want are new customers, right?

If only more new customers would walk in your door, thrilled to have found you, ready to spend money. Without having to do any work on your part.

New customer acquisition marketing is essential for your business; bringing in new customers as often as possible is necessary. If not, your business will die.

There are only three ways to grow your business:

  1. Acquire New Customers.
  2. Increase Your Average Transaction Value.
  3. Increase Your Customer’s Frequency of Purchase.

It’s a three-legged stool; you can’t focus on only one. Each one needs the other. Without new customers, your existing customer list doesn’t grow, and the pool of people you’re marketing to needs to increase to prevent natural customer churn. People move, die, divorce, or find another business to frequent, so your funnel always needs replenishing with fresh, new, long-term customers.

New customer acquisition should not be the only focus of a business. In fact, retention is just as important as new customer acquisition because it’s the best way to ensure a positive return on investment (ROI). Existing customers come more frequently, spend more money, and cost less to get in the door. Acquiring new customers is expensive – but businesses HAVE TO spend money on advertising, marketing, and sales to bring in new business.

Pro Tip: Don’t focus on the first transaction when acquiring a new customer. “He who can afford to spend the most to get a new customer wins!” – Dan Kennedy.

Retention, on the other hand, is much cheaper. It costs far less to retain customers than to acquire more customers. In fact, it’s estimated that it costs five times more to acquire a new customer than it does to keep an existing one.

It’s estimated that customer acquisition cost through marketing and advertising ranges from 5% to 25% of the customer’s lifetime value. So, if a new customer is worth $1,000 over their lifetime, a business would spend between $50 and $250 to acquire them. Of course, these costs can vary significantly depending on the business. For example, companies that sell high-priced products or services can expect to spend more money to acquire new customers than businesses that sell low-priced products or services.

So, why do so many businesses focus on new customer acquisition instead of retention? The answer is simple: new customer acquisition is sexier. It’s more exciting to bring in new business than it is to focus on existing customers.

But just because new customer acquisition is sexier doesn’t mean it’s more important. You need to be doing both. After all, what good is acquiring new customers if they’re just going to churn?

Today, though, we’ll focus on NEW customers. They don’t come cheaply! New customer acquisition is expensive and complicated. Convincing someone to come to your business is a considerable challenge.

How NOT To Get A New Customer

A new customer isn’t thinking about you all day, wondering about your products and services. They don’t know who you are, where you are, or how to get to you. Maybe they have to drive by a bunch of your competitors to get to you; that’s a distraction. Or perhaps a friend’s personal recommendations sent them somewhere else. Or they have another business like yours that they have used before and have little motivation to find an alternative.

But first and foremost, THEY DON’T TRUST YOU!

It takes far more energy and money to convince them to come to you. So if you are going to spend all that effort, time, and money to get new customers into your business, you had better put your best foot forward.

Imagine you’re going on a first date. It took you weeks to get the courage to ask the person out. You rehearsed your lines, brushed your hair, practiced your charming smile. Then, after they said yes, they started asking others about you. Mutual friends, people at the gym, your boss, or even an ex.

Are You Clean?

That’s what’s happening when you put out your new customer acquisition marketing. They are intrigued, they are making plans to do business with you, and then they go online and “ask their friends” about you. Which in today’s lingo means: they GOOGLE YOU.

The internet has made it easy for customers to research businesses before doing business with them. Consumers trust online reviews. Yep sorry to drop that on you, but they trust what other people say more than they trust what you say. And a negative online review can quickly turn a potential customer off if it isn’t handled well, and many negative reviews will eliminate their interest entirely. Many positive reviews will validate their interest and make them more likely to discredit a few negative ones.

That’s why reputation management is so vital for new customer acquisition. By monitoring your online review sites, responding to negative reviews quickly and professionally, and engaging with positive reviews, you can protect your reputation and ensure that new customers are more likely to do business with you.
To read more details about handling positive reviews AND negative reviews, check out the previous blog post: How To Answer ANY Review.

One of the most important things you can do to acquire new customers is to claim your online business listings. By doing so, you make sure that your contact information is accurate and up-to-date, and you can control the information that appears about you online.

Claiming your online business listings also helps improve your search engine ranking. When potential customers search for businesses online, the businesses that appear first in the search results are more likely to be contacted. The higher up you are, the more credibility you are given. By claiming your online business listings and monitoring your online reviews, you can ensure that your business is putting its best foot forward regarding new customer acquisition.

I Have An Online Reputation?

One of the best ways to keep track of how your business is performing online is to use a free tool like Google Alerts. With Google Alerts, you can set up specific searches for your company name and receive email notifications whenever new results appear in Google Search. This will help you stay on top of any new information, blog posts, or articles circulating online.

Another way to keep track of your company’s online reputation is to perform regular Google searches for your company name and related keywords. This will help you see what new content is being published about your company and give you a chance to respond quickly to any negative sentiment.

Don’t Ignore Your Customers

Pro Tip: If someone took the time to leave you a review, the least you can do is respond back to them. Good and Bad.

The Key To Reputation Success

Engage with your reviewers, both positive and negative. Thank people for posting. Let people know you are listening and appreciate their honesty about their customer experience. Be open to feedback, and resolve negative reviews professionally and respectfully. This helps the people reading the reviews know you are actively involved, a real person, and that you are accountable.

Finally, make sure that you are actively engaged in social media. Social media provides an excellent platform for monitoring your online reputation. By monitoring social media, you can quickly identify any potential problems and take steps to address them before they become serious.

By following these tips, you can stay on top of your company’s online reputation and ensure that new customers have a positive experience with your business. If you’re not already doing so, start implementing these tips today, and you’ll surely see a difference in your new customer acquisition rate.

Don’t let the Google Monster Eat You Up

Google is the big player – so the first place you need to go is Google to optimize your Google business account. Claim your listing if you haven’t already; otherwise, Google will search the internet for the information to fill it out, which may not be accurate.

Keep your listing up to date by posting updates about your business and responding to reviews. You will move up the search results, increase your star rating, attract new customers and grow your business.

Once you’ve claimed it, here’s a checklist of items you can use to regularly monitor it. We recommend tracking your results each time you review them with your number of reviews, star rating, and where you come up on an organic search.

  1. Make sure that your listing is complete and accurate. Include all the essential information about your business, such as your hours of operation, address, and contact information.
  2. Add photos and videos to your listing. People love visuals, so this is a great way to attract attention to your listing.
  3. Encourage customers to leave reviews. Google reviews can help you attract new customers and build trust with potential customers.
  4. Respond to reviews promptly, be professional and polite and if there’s a problem, offer to solve it offline.
  5. Keep your listing up to date. If you make any changes to your business, such as changing your hours or moving to a new location, update your Google Local Business Listing accordingly.
  6. Take advantage of Google’s “Posts” feature to regularly share updates about your business with potential customers.

Google is an integral part of your digital marketing strategy. Google’s reviews and listings are free, making it a cost-effective tool to get your business found by potential new customers online. You can attract new customers with less effort by claiming and optimizing your Google listing.

Create a Repeatable System

Like everything in business, you need a system. Build a checklist of the items and sites you regularly want to check, set time on the calendar at regular intervals to read your online reviews, and respond as needed. With the proper tools, it does not have to be the headache you might expect, and if you ignore it, the headache will be bigger! With a smart strategic plan, you can manage the tasks of organizing review processes easier.

Want to find out EXACTLY how you rank against your competition across Google and all your review sites?

Click the button and take our Review Analyzer Scorecard test and see how you compare.


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Michael Thibault

Michael Thibault

Known as “The Done For You Marketing Guy for Restaurants.” International Speaker on Restaurant Marketing. Published contributing author of 4 Marketing Books. Industry expert on Google Searches and Review Sites. Recovering Independent Restaurant Owner and Caterer of over 21 years. And, all-around good guy.

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