Ways Businesses in Kenya can use Invoices as Sales and Marketing Tools
Small business owners and freelancers are always looking for new ways to market their businesses. Invoices are one of the most overlooked tools in marketing but they shouldn’t be. There are several types of incentives, offers, and marketing messages that can be communicated to your clients via your invoices. Unlike many marketing messages customers get through email or print they can easily ignore, most will usually take the time to go through the invoice with more focus.
Modern invoicing solutions should provide your customers with an analysis of the services they used, their costs, and any additional important information. Your customers need the ability to track and compare their usage, to see trends develop, and to identify problems in their early stages. Most importantly, they need transparency regarding charges, discounts, and extra charges.
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One way to keep your customers coming back for more is to use your invoice as more than just a payment document. The following are ways a small business owner can convert their invoices into a marketing and sales tool;
- Encourage referrals and testimonials
Your customers can be valuable partners in growing your business. They know your products and how you work, so they are in a great position to recommend your business to their contacts. Ask them for a referral or a testimony.
When filling out an invoice, your client always remembers how well your product worked for them and they are evaluating their experience. Take advantage of that by asking them to share what they thought. Be careful to not be overly aggressive with your request.
You can offer them incentives to recommend your service or products such as discounts and referral bonuses, or simply make your invoice something to talk about with their friends; this is a perfect way of trying to boost your sales.
- Boost your brand strength
Often, invoices are seen simply as necessary business documents that can be plain and to the point. They are a document outlining the work and products that you have provided your customer, and how much they owe you.
But a well-designed invoice can strengthen your branding and improve your customer’s perception of your business. Even if you don’t add any other marketing features to your invoice; you should make sure that your brand is apparent in your invoice. Use designs and copy that resonate with your company’s vision and values.
- Request for feedbacks
Invoices are a great opportunity to get feedback from your customers as they look back at the work or product you’ve given them. It’s easier to tell you how to improve or to give praise when your work is at the top of their mind.
If they offer you suggestions for improvement, always thank them sincerely and take this great opportunity to make your offering stronger. You can even use their suggestions as a way to sell your services to them again, by thanking them again later on when you have implemented their suggestions.
- Make announcements through the invoice
If you want your client to return to you, demonstrating that their experience will be even better the next time is a strong selling point.
Keep your customer interested in your products and services by using your invoices to announce any special events or offers that will be coming at a later time. This allows you to build up interest in your customer. If you’re adding a service that would matter to them, try and emphasize it. If you’re improving upon a negative experience they had, letting them know will bring more value. Here, you can show them that you care about their experience, even after they’ve paid you.
- Offer a discount
Offer a discount code only available through the invoice. The purpose of the discount code is to persuade customers to come back for second, third, fourth purchases and demonstrate you value their loyalty. You can offer something like a 10% discount on their next purchase or a buy-one-get-one-free.
- Acknowledge loyal customers
Show your customer how much you appreciate them with a short and personalized note. Acknowledging how much their loyalty means to you and how it nurtures a relationship and builds your business. Make sure your note reflects your overall brand messaging. It is really easy and simple to do with online invoicing software, but you can also work it into your paper invoices and invoice templates. When your clients feel recognized, they will be more likely to come back for more.
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These are only some of the best ways that you can use your invoices to not just send a payment request to your customers, but also to use that space to create loyal customers and increase your sales. The invoices you send to your customers are a part of your corporate communication, just like newsletters, business calls, messages on social media, and your website. It is an opportunity to communicate the benefits of using your services and them being your customer.
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