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Newsletter #820: The “Earn the Repeat Sale” Issue

[Welcome back to the Damn, I Wish I’d Thought of That! newsletter. This is text of the great issue all of our email subscribers just received. Sign yourself up using the handy form on the right.]

If you’ve earned the trust and respect of your customers, selling to them is much easier than selling to strangers. How a few smart marketers are doing it:

1> A gift card for next time
2> The inside scoop on the new thing
3> Access to the member discounts
4> Check it out: Abandoned bowling alleys

1> A gift card for next time

When you make the initial sale, consider it the beginning of the second sale. Geja’s Cafe in Chicago is a high-end restaurant — it’s the type of place people go on special occasions. But they do something that makes the next visit seem a little less expensive: They give you a $25 gift card that you can use yourself or send to a friend. The gesture is not only a great sales tool, but they also get great word of mouth when you use the gift card to bring in a new friend or two.

The lesson: Look for small perks to make sure the first sale isn’t the last.

2> The inside scoop on the new thing

When you’re launching something new, try giving your existing fans and customers the first peek. When TripAdvisor launched SniqueAway — their member-only club for hotel deals — they sent the first invites to their TripAdvisor subscribers. Giving their fans the early access to this “exclusive” club meant they instantly got a bunch of new members for SniqueAway, as well as a bunch of happy talkers sharing the new deals.

The lesson: When you’re coming out with your next new thing, get things off to a strong start by sharing it with the people who already love your stuff.

Learn more: SniqueAway

3> Access to the member discounts

Earning a single sale is nice, but earning a subscription means you’ve earned sales for a year. At Becker Vineyards near Fredericksburg, Texas, new visitors can get the insider discount on all wines (usually around 20% off list price) if they sign up for a membership as well. The membership itself is a nice deal (they send you monthly wines at friendly prices), but getting the same-day benefits when you sign up closes the deal for a bunch of folks who might otherwise pass. Whatever margin they lose on the individual sales they more than make up for in long-term subscriptions and customer loyalty.

The lesson: Are you spending the same energy and resources on that one sale as you could on a year’s worth of sales?

Learn more: Becker Vineyards

4> Check it out: Abandoned bowling alleys

Not long ago, bowling was one of the most popular family sports around. But with the decline in popularity, many have gone dark — which is what this photo tour is all about.

Check it out: Web Urbanist

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