In an attempt to better connect with the customers in their areas, many small businesses rely on being able to collect large amounts of contact information for these people, and they often do so for a number of reasons.
Today, 57 percent of small business owners say they're trying to increase the size of their email messaging lists in a number of ways "at all times," according to a new poll from Constant Contact. Meanwhile, 44 percent of those polled said that the potential for repeat business is the reason they try to build these email lists, while 39 percent believe it's important for maintaining relationships with customers.
"List growth, and the business benefits that come with it, are clearly on the minds of small business owners today," said Christopher Litster, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Constant Contact. "They realize that engaging customers is a key aspect of both maintaining old relationships and finding new ones – and one of the best ways to do that is through their email marketing. More than two-thirds of the survey respondents said that they train employees to request customer contact information at points of interaction."
When it comes to how they collect this type of information, two-thirds of respondents say they train their employees to ask for some sort of contact data from customers, while nearly half rely on online tools that help them gather this information, such as Facebook. Meanwhile, more than nine in 10 say that they have forms to join mailing lists on their websites.
Further, nearly two-thirds ask customers for contact information directly, while 42 percent collect business cards from patrons, the report said. In addition, about three in five also collect information using sign-up sheets at events they attend.
The ability to develop large customer bases is one of the most important aspects of increasing the size of a small business, but with that type of growth can potentially come other issues, including increased small business insurance costs. As such, owners looking to build out operations in some way may want to consider the ways in which doing so might increase their general liability insurance or workers' compensation insurance premiums going forward, and better plan for their future success in this way.