The Importance of Word-of-Mouth Marketing for Independent Contractors

by Emily Retherford

2 min read

As an independent contractor, time and money are typically both at a premium. So, developing a word-of-mouth marketing campaign is an excellent strategy for pulling in new customers. With almost all of your time spent in the field, it costs nothing to allow customers, friends, and family to promote your business. Social media platforms also offer no cost to small business owners looking to gain market share. Furthermore, statistics show that referral marketing is highly effective. A 2013 study conducted by Nielsen revealed that when deciding where to purchase goods or services, 84% of potential buyers look to recommendations from friends and family. Discover these methods to maximize your marketing efforts while minimizing expenses.

Reliability

There are three key elements for getting customers to spread the word about your work. You show up on the job when promised. You perform the tasks at hand with professionalism and timeliness. Your rates are competitive and reasonable. No customer can ask more of a contractor. If you’re willing to set these standards, those people you’ve serviced will be happy to refer you at the next opportunity. The best part of the deal is that you’ve created an advertising network by doing nothing more than the right job at a fair price. Building a great reputation costs nothing, but speaks loudly.

Social Media

The value of social media to small business should not be discounted. The number of [users across all platforms in 2016] (https://www.statista.com/statistics/273476/percentage-of-us-population-with-a-social-network-profile/) is about 1.96 billion. This number is expected to grow to 2.5 billion by 2018. Take advantage of the sheer number of customers and prospects that log on daily. Build your presence on sites such as Facebook and Instagram, which enables satisfied customers to “like” your page while touting your business on their own pages. 58% of consumers use their personal cyberspaces to share positive comments about business encounters while seeking referrals from others they know and trust.

Existing Customers

Acquiring new customers requires more money and effort than keeping existing customers. Therefore, it’s beneficial to coddle existing clients while searching for new ones. Established customers serve as a great word-of-mouth advertising source, and you may want to give something in return. All clients appreciate tokens of gratitude for their patronage, and offering coupons or discounts helps [customer loyalty] (https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/233362) and retention. The small dollar amounts you may forego in revenue will be regained through the reduced costs of paid advertising campaigns.

Traditional Media Testimonials

By being reliable and taking care of loyal customers, you may have an opportunity to leverage more traditional media outlets. Do you have a contact at a local newspaper or television station? Community-minded reporters are always seeking to promote local businesses. A news brief or feature article helps reach populations to whom social media is not a primary option. Unlike placing an ad in newsprint or a 30-second TV spot, these exposures are free, and limiting out-of-pocket costs will help grow your bottom line.

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