Help Gaining Customers

Discussion in 'Growing and Managing a Business' started by ACV, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. ACV

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    Aug 11, 2014
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    Hi everyone, I need a bit of help to gain customers. My business is selling electronic cigarettes, or personal vaporisers, via an online store exclusively to Australia. We order from China and while the products are fairly good quality, they are what is considered "clones" because their design is "copied" from the original Chinese manufacturer who made them. Just like a BMW is a copy of a Porsche because it has four wheels and a horn. The customers we're trying to target feel very strongly about what is considered original or a clone but the products we stock are made very well compared to most of the electronic cigarettes out there and we certainly don't consider them cheap Chinese imports. There are different types of customers, those that buy only name brand and think anything else is evil, those that buy clones because named brands are expensive, and those that don't care either way as long as it stops them smoking cigarettes. Most of the named brand stuff is from the same province in China anyway so I can't see why they're any better than anything else out there.

    Anyway we posted on the only Australian vaping forum saying we are a new Australian based business with low cost high quality electronic cigarettes, etc and the response we got was that our prices were insanely high for cheap copies. We've checked our prices against other Australian vendors and they're inline within a few cents of "authentic" as well as "clones", so this confused us. However we dropped most of our prices to below local vendors but still we're having a hard time getting any sales.

    There isn't a whole lot of room to lower prices any more but we wanted to be able to market to customers that they're not cheap copies but instead do the job. The hard part about marketing is that most classifieds and Google etc. lump e-cigs in with tobacco products even though technically they're not tobacco products and still legal to sell but that's a whole other story and debate.

    We want to be able to turn this negative feedback around and somehow prove that what we sell is much better than what they think. We use the products we used for the photos ourselves as we couldn't sell them and they're fine, they work, they haven't broken or anything which most lower quality e-cigs do. They'll happily pay half the price for cheaper clones from China and wait 4 weeks for postage then complain about the quality on the forum, rather than paying an extra dollar or two and get it within 3 days.

    Is there a way to turn negative views around? Should we offer specials? Respond and try to prove them wrong? Lower prices more?

    I'm not sure if I'm allowed to post links so if you'd like to check out our site and the forum post to gain some more insight then pm me and I'll give them to you.

    Thank you for your help.

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