This week at Access Salt Lake, we asked business owners to tell us about some of the challenges they face in business. Several put "Marketing/Sales" at the top of their lists.

Salt Lake City business owners agree that effective and affordable marketing that leads to sales can be hard to find. So what's the secret sauce? The be-all and end-all fix? The Game Changer? We asked Ty Copier, a Marketer and member of Access Salt Lake.

"The first step is to stop separating marketing from sales. If your current marketing plan isn't generating sales, it's time to start a new plan. Impressions and Likes are no longer enough, you need a plan that drives sales. If your current marketing strategy isn't producing a ROI, start over!"

Where's a good place to start?

"Many business owners spend a lot of time and money trying to find new customers, while failing to capitalize on the influence of their existing customers," said Copier.

"For thriving product and service based businesses in The US, approximately 80% of sales come from returning customers."

-Crushpath 2016

"If a person does business with you once and is satisfied, there's a good chance they will return," says Copier. "It's important to stay in constant contact with your customers, reminding them that your products and/or services still exist, and they are still awesome."

What's the best way to keep in touch with existing customers?

"People trust recommendations from family and friends FAR more than they trust an ad for a company talking about how awesome they are personally. Influencer marketing should be at your plan's foundation."

Copier gives a few influencer marketing tips to consider:

Send an email to your customer immediately following a sale and include the following:

  • A link to leave a review on Google, Yelp, Yellow Pages, etc. (Great SEO)
  • A discount coupon they can use for their next visit
  • A bonus offer if they refer a friend
  • A newsletter containing valuable, engaging information

"These are great places to start. There are systems that can do this for you automatically, though it's very manageable on your own," said Copier. "Be sure to collect all of your customers email addresses at the point of sale. From there, you're well on your way to an influencer marketing plan that will take your bottom line to a whole new level!"