There are many different ways of marketing your business on a very small budget.
I have started two very successful optical stores from scratch using these methods and have proof that they work. You do not have to have a huge budget to make a difference to the bottom line.
With today’s economy, we need to look at different marketing ideas to attract new business and to keep the old. In order to do that, our marketing plan needs a shake up. To follow up on the previous tips to promote your practice in Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of Marketing on a Budget, the following are ideas and examples on what you can do without much effort or expense.
Join the Chamber of Commerce and participate in Leads Groups. A Leads Group is a group of business representatives or owners who give each other leads to do business. If someone needs eyeglasses or contacts the group members will send that person to your business. I usually get two leads per month from this group.
Talk to your PTA group about eyes. Show parents that yours is the place to go to for eyecare. PTAs are always looking for topics for their meetings. Talk about safety glasses or sports glasses for children.
Donate old lenses to schools for science projects.
Befriend school nurses and educate them about safety eyeglasses for sports. Be the specialist for eyes. Get referrals for eye exams to your practice.
Start a Laughing Yoga club. Laughing Yoga is a very happy event. It was started in 1995 by an Indian physician, named Dr. Madan Kantaria. He realized the positive benefits of Laughter Yoga: “You do not need a reason to laugh. We can laugh just for the sake of laughing.” Laughter Yoga has four parts: gentle stretching, breathing, laughter exercises, hand clapping, and a little meditation at the end so the body absorbs all the endorphins it has created from the laughter. The club can be held in your place of business since it does not require any special equipment. It is a free club, but the benefits for both you and your potential customers are enormous! Yours will be the place for happy eyeglasses. Laughter exercises will reduce stress and increase the bottom line by attracting new potential customers.
Wear unique eyeglasses yourself, even if you do not need them. There is much more empathy with an optician who wears glasses. You will be surprised how many comments you will get and at the same time how many opportunities to talk about your business. This will happen at the grocery store, gym, restaurant, and just walking down the street.
Use your clients in your advertising. Take pictures of them and hang the pictures on the I-love-my-customers wall. My best word-of-mouth advertiser was my UPS person. He told everybody about his picture on my wall!
When you have “lookers” in, instead of giving them the frame information, take their name and e-mail address and keep it on file. Send an e-mail to remind them about the frame and how fantastic it looked on them.
Above all, think and grow rich. The universe is your oyster when it comes to marketing your business on a budget.