A very convenient filling station that was set up recently 5 minutes from my house in Mbabane was a ghost town for months. The only people you found there were the petrol attendants standing in large groups chatting away as if that’s what they were hired to do and the shop attendants eager to greet you with a wide smile even when buying gum (that’s what I call service with a smile). There was often no car in sight and none bothered to use their shop. Fast forward about 6 months later, the filling station is fast becoming the busiest in town. Drivers within its neighborhood have gradually realized its convenience – to be so near to their residents and have started adopting the filling station as their first choice to fill-up and buy the everyday goods (newspapers and bread) from.
So Customers typically go through 3 stages when deciding to choose a product or service as one to use permanently. (1) they first try it out to find out what it is really all about or how different it is (2) then buy it again just to be sure it’s consistent and then (3) they decided to be permanent customers.
Most business owners are fooled to think they have won a customer over when a customer is just at the trial stage – just checking out the product. They fail to realize that the customer requires that gently push to make the second purchase for irrefutable evidence that the product is really a suitable one. The last purchase is usually without much of the business owner’s push but an earlier “marketing investment’ made such that when the customer requires the product he/she easily remembers yours – this is known as top of mind (TOM) awareness.
As you can probably see, this is linked to the business life cycle above. This means you can influence the rate of your business growth by tweaking the customer product adoption process. Discover what makes a customer buy, as discussed earlier, and FastTrack the process and your business will realize faster growth than most.