Offline Business Marketers How Do You Handle Client Competition?

by JRG
39 replies
I recently started working with offline businesses in my area. I have had some decent success with it and as I do more work I ran into a competition issue. If you are doing the offline to online model as well I wanted to see how you handle this.

I received a call from a company who saw the work I did for a client who is their competitor. They are impressed with how my client is now #1 for their keywords in all the cities in the area.

So they asked if they can hire me to do the same for them. But being that I have an ongoing relationship with their competition, I am not sure how to handle that.

Do any of you set up non compete agreements with your clients like for that specific area or something?

Thanks in advance.
#business #client #competition #handle #marketers #offline
  • Profile picture of the author James English
    When you say you have an ongoing relationship with them, does that mean they are still paying you on a monthly/yearly basis?

    If there is any sort of financial commitment on their part still, I would say your choices are to either optimize the new client for a different set of keywords, or to decline until something changes.
    Signature
    HandRaise.co Performance Driven B2B Prospecting and Appointment Setting
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446570].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author JRG
      I am doing additional work for them but at this point no monthly fees. That was kind of what I thought. He does have some additional keywords for services not offered by my client.

      If I finish the work and do not have a monthly payment with them for maintaining then I'm thinking it shouldn't matter. If their competition was smarter to pay me monthly to keep them ranked then so be it.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446596].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Jagged
    How big is your town / city?
    How big is their market?...is there room for both to survive?
    Are they close in physical proximity?

    I have clients in similar niches....like Chiropractors. I've worked with 5 in my Area, but I make sure they are not in direct competition with eachother...meaning same zipcode. But then again, my town is large enough to do this...
    If your in a larger municipality, such as pittsburg, boston, oakland or tampa, which you are....fine, but if your in squirel nut, oklahoma...population 5,000....I might reconcider.

    You state that you are not on any kind of monthly payments or retainer. I see no reason why not to work with the competitor. Like you said..."if they are smart enough to pay monthly to keep them ranked...so be it"

    Good luck,
    Ken
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446721].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author DogScout
      I think I'd offer the 1st guy a monthly contract which would include the no-compete thing. If he doesn't find value in that, you shouldn't feel like working for the other company would be a problem.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446755].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author cdhartpence
        I get most of my income via the "hybrid" (online/offline) route, and I've never had a problem working with clients in the same industry.

        Part of that, of course, is that I live in a smallish town, but the other part is simply this: where keywords are concerned, there are so many that there's certainly enough room to carve out niches for everyone. Aside from that, what's wrong with having five of your clients in slots 1-5 on google's first page?

        That smells like success to me!

        -=Vel=-

        EDIT: If I'm working with a client in the same industry as a client I've already got, I can usually guide the keyword selection in such a way that there's no direct competition anyways, but again...small town...it has its perks!
        Signature

        Want to cash in on site revenue streams that almost no one is talking about? Are you in the know? If not, meet me at The Crossroads...

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446830].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author TheRichLife
        I agree with DogScout, and would add that you should make this part of your original sales process and contract. When pitching your services, give the client a choice between open competition with others in their same line of work for $X, or a no-compete for $X+.
        Signature

        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446837].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Riz
          This is exactly what i do and recommend that route for future clients.

          However, your situation is different and you need to analyse if your city is big enough for both to be on the first page google. For example one could be on the west side and the other on the south side. Of course this depends on the niche and if it is affected by these factors.

          I would talk to your existing client. Tell them of the interest from your competitor. Ask them if they would like to move onto a monthly contract which will ensure that they remain at number 1 position. Without ongoing seo they are not likely to remain there anyway.

          If they agree you can work with the other client for different keyword terms or offer them different IM services, ie Email marketing, Video Marketing etc etc.

          If your current client disagrees to the monthly service there is nothing stopping you from working with another client in the same niche.

          Hope that helps :-)

          Riz

          Originally Posted by TheRichLife View Post

          I agree with DogScout, and would add that you should make this part of your original sales process and contract. When pitching your services, give the client a choice between open competition with others in their same line of work for , or a no-compete for +.
          Signature
          NEWBIES - Stuck on Technical Issues?

          Ask me For a FREE copy of my upcoming course that will eliminate all your technical gremlins....:
          SEND ME A PRIVATE MESSAGE NOW!
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446990].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Mr. Enthusiastic
          Originally Posted by TheRichLife View Post

          I agree with DogScout, and would add that you should make this part of your original sales process and contract. When pitching your services, give the client a choice between open competition with others in their same line of work for , or a no-compete for +.
          How much more do you charge for the non-compete, and how long does it last?
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1446996].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author TimCastleman
            You guys can tailor the pitch to each client and their specific situation. Maybe one offers a service that the other doesn't. Or maybe one goes after a different target market then the other.

            Tim
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447072].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author AP
            Many of you are doing this wrong from the get-go, that is why these issues come up later.

            All my clients have "Protected" Territories. I live in a large city in the US. Depending upon the Niche, I have between 6-8 protected territories that are drawn up in advance.

            I'll give an example. I have one niche filled with (6) companies. Each company pays me $1,497 per month, or $9,000 to me ;-)

            They all know they have protected geo-targeted areas and there may be some small overlap of marketing.

            Bottom line is that I do everything to get each client enough business so that my management fee never becomes an issue.

            Never lost a client in over 2 years. Sometimes my client will actually refer me to a friend in the same biz on the other side of town, I simply tell them "Sorry, all my areas are taken." I'm more concerned with keeping my Continuity money coming month after month, rather than make more money.

            Once that Niche above was filled, I simply started marketing to another niche. Rinse and Repeat.

            It's similar to a WSO, once it's Sold out, it's gone.

            BTW, once your client understands that if he leaves the program, you will have him replaced very fast, they never leave.
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447101].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author Xebec
              Originally Posted by AP View Post

              All my clients have "Protected" Territories. I live in a large city in the US. Depending upon the Niche, I have between 6-8 protected territories that are drawn up in advance.
              Forgive the newbie questions, but how does that work when what you're competing for is listings on Google Page 1?

              A guy searches for "My Big City Dentist" or "Dentist in My Big City", right?

              Now, you've got My Big City divided into 6 different "zones". But, Google doesn't know what those zones are, right? So, all 6 of your dentist are competing for the same 10 slots on page 1. And, only one of them can be in the number 1 slot.

              So, even though the dentists aren't competing for the same customers, they are competing for the rankings, aren't they?

              Thanks for your insight into this. It's really been baffling me.
              Signature

              Keith Price

              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1492140].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author JRG
    Yeah in this case it is a service that is offered in several counties. A retail store would be easier to deal with cause they would not have such a broad reach. Thanks for all the ideas.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447057].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author kellysharali
    There are some great points here. I live in a small city here in the U.S. and I wanted to know what niches have you had success targeting for SEO work? Businesses that come to my mind are restaurants, dentists, salons, etc. Here is my dilemma though. For a lot of the business categories, there is not enough search data according to the google keyword tool. I know it is important for a business to be on the first page of google but how can they guage if they are getting clients this way?
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447288].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Jagged
      Originally Posted by kellysharali View Post

      There are some great points here. I live in a small city here in the U.S. and I wanted to know what niches have you had success targeting for SEO work? Businesses that come to my mind are restaurants, dentists, salons, etc. Here is my dilemma though. For a lot of the business categories, there is not enough search data according to the google keyword tool. I know it is important for a business to be on the first page of google but how can they guage if they are getting clients this way?

      My experiences tell me that just about any medical related field looks more into SEO. Not so much a regular physician, but Chiropractors, Plastic Surgeons, Eye doctors, other "specialty physicians"....they are so competitive, plus they generally have larger budgets to accomodate SEO packages, where as a small restaurant might shy away from a monthly 4 figure SEO package...

      As far as gauging if they are getting clients...
      It's all in the analytics...Most hosting control panels have website analytics and webalizers that you can see increases or decrases in traffic, where it's coming from, what pages thy are looking at most, how long they stay etc...
      If the client is in Google local.......stat's in there tell you how many click throughs to their website, how many click on coupons, how many clicked for driving directions, etc..
      Then there is Google analytics too......all kinds of ways to determine if they are getting traffic & new clients...

      Good luck,
      Ken
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447407].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author AP
      Originally Posted by kellysharali View Post

      There are some great points here. I live in a small city here in the U.S. and I wanted to know what niches have you had success targeting for SEO work?

      Businesses that come to my mind are restaurants, dentists, salons, etc. Here is my dilemma though. For a lot of the business categories, there is not enough search data according to the google keyword tool. I know it is important for a business to be on the first page of google but how can they guage if they are getting clients this way?
      Any of those niches you mentioned have a need for your services.

      What if there was NO internet? Are you then worthless?

      SEO has almost nothing to do with making Local business money.

      My clients get between 3-7 hits on Page 1 Google for major keywords.

      I do On Page SEO and very little backlinks. Think outside the box my friends.

      The problem with most people trying to work the offline market is they believe it's all about Online marketing. I can assure you my clients make a ton of money within 30 days after they sign with me even though any online presence has NOT started.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447530].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author DogScout
        Originally Posted by AP View Post

        The problem with most people trying to work the offline market is they believe it's all about Online marketing. I can assure you my clients make a ton of money within 30 days after they sign with me even though any online presence has NOT started.
        And it doesn't even take 30 days. Off-line marketing can and should (if you are concerned about your client's welfare) a part and many times a huge part of the picture. If you are an on-line 'expert', then your on-line work will shine; but the package can include any type of marketing. Direct marketing in particular. I am a member of the local chapter of GKIC and include those techniques and information on my clients behalf. I believe that the on-line work is only half (or less) of the 'battle', in much the same way as on-page SEO is only half (if that) the battle with on-line ranking.
        My sale is a 'sales' package, not a 'marketing' package, on or off line, but it is due to having the upper hand on-line that even allows me access to many clients.

        I have seen contracts that have made me laugh out loud. They look like they were drawn up in 1996, not 2009. These are the rule, not the exception! It is almost as if once they got their IT degree (or whatever degree it was) they stopped learning. As if the world would always just stay the same.
        Anyone at this forum cannot deny that what worked 3 years ago would probably not make a dent in a ranking today. (Except for me, I am new. Lol). There are tons of companies that promote local SEO services that have less than a tenth of the knowledge the newest person here has.

        "It isn't what you know when you know it all; it is what you learn afterward."

        lol

        Bottomline is: if the client decides to 'trust' someone with no clue, not much you can do about it. After you have gotten their trust, don't do anything to compromise it for mere money. In the long run, it will cost you money. As I see it anyway. Over-deliver and share every move as well as why. They won't understand anyway. lol. You don't say anything and take a big contract with a competitor, even using different keywords and in no way compromising the 1st clients position, doesn't matter. The chances of the 1st client understanding that are slim. (Otherwise he'd be doing his own work and not hiring you). He/she find out, kiss any referrals or future work from them goodbye. If you are in a small town market, and that client is a member of the Chamber, you may as well move.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447669].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author JRG
        Originally Posted by AP View Post

        Any of those niches you mentioned have a need for your services.

        What if there was NO internet? Are you then worthless?

        SEO has almost nothing to do with making Local business money.

        My clients get between 3-7 hits on Page 1 Google for major keywords.

        I do On Page SEO and very little backlinks. Think outside the box my friends.

        The problem with most people trying to work the offline market is they believe it's all about Online marketing. I can assure you my clients make a ton of money within 30 days after they sign with me even though any online presence has NOT started.
        Yeah I actually do some offline stuff for them too. It depends on the business and where their market is. Many times they are just not using the tools they have correctly.

        I have always loved marketing but never got into it until doing internet marketing. Then I started helping friends who own businesses and that turned into, my offline business.

        So I am still learning but love the success stories I am hearing from my clients. And that is from online and offline work.

        I can't tell you how many times I meet with a business that never thought of using separate phone numbers for that advertisements to track what each campaign is doing.

        I love both the online and offline side.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447829].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author JRG
          By the way. SendPepper.com is a great product. They do direct response mailouts with purls.

          So you are actually tying offline and online together for the best of both worlds.

          The mailer gets their attention and the purl notifies you that they are interested.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447850].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author Chadisa
            Originally Posted by JR Griggs View Post

            By the way. SendPepper.com is a great product. They do direct response mailouts with purls.

            So you are actually tying offline and online together for the best of both worlds.

            The mailer gets their attention and the purl notifies you that they are interested.
            That's a great find - never knew about SendPepper.com. I have been looking for something like this forever. I have been trying the whole postcard thing for awhile with not so fantastic results.

            My thought on the original point of the thread - if you aren't accepting a monthly retainer from the first company my thought is that you can totally work for a competitor.
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1451186].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author kellysharali
        Originally Posted by AP View Post

        Any of those niches you mentioned have a need for your services.

        What if there was NO internet? Are you then worthless?

        SEO has almost nothing to do with making Local business money.

        My clients get between 3-7 hits on Page 1 Google for major keywords.

        I do On Page SEO and very little backlinks. Think outside the box my friends.

        The problem with most people trying to work the offline market is they believe it's all about Online marketing. I can assure you my clients make a ton of money within 30 days after they sign with me even though any online presence has NOT started.

        When you say your clients make a ton of money within 30 days, do you advice them on how to better market their business offline? If so, what strategies do you use? If I was taking on a restaurant as a client, I would advice them collecting customer email addresses and possibly phone s for sms marketing in the future. Put their web address on receipt so customers can visit site to get a coupon. If there are any resources you would recommend for helping offline businesses becoming more successful, that would be great. I can think of guerilla marketing tactics that would work but not sure if these are what you are using.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447956].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
          Originally Posted by kellysharali View Post

          When you say your clients make a ton of money within 30 days, do you advice them on how to better market their business offline? If so, what strategies do you use? If I was taking on a restaurant as a client, I would advice them collecting customer email addresses and possibly phone s for sms marketing in the future. Put their web address on receipt so customers can visit site to get a coupon. If there are any resources you would recommend for helping offline businesses becoming more successful, that would be great. I can think of guerilla marketing tactics that would work but not sure if these are what you are using.
          Kelly, there are tons of things you can do or suggest that will help a restaurant make more money. The ones you suggested are a good start.

          You can also collect mailing addresses along with important dates (birthdays, anniversaries, etc.) so you can send greeting cards, post cards, etc. to generate repeat business.

          If you expand your mind, you can find lots of little things. One place I know of bumped their wine sales significantly by having the servers pour a taste in a glass when anyone of age sat down. Another gets glowing reviews in part because the chef/owner makes time to introduce himself and inquire how things are going.

          Here's a sneaky trick - go through the restaurant reviews, both online and in the media, and start making notes about the things people like and don't like. Keep those lists in mind when observing your clients' businesses, and simply offer suggestions based on what you see compared to those lists.

          As long as you add more value than you collect in fees, you're golden...
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1448164].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author joshril
    It's a big benefit to a client to have a "protected territory". You can add tremendous value and actually land more business by telling the client that you're interested in working with only 1 business category per geographic area.

    It's better for you as a consultant as well because you can charge more... I'd rather charge more and have fewer clients than charge less and have to go hunting for new clients all of the time.

    In this situation, the advice about going back to the first client and offering a monthly contract makes sense. If they don't bite, then do some work for the competitor.

    This thing really should be addressed in the beginning going forward, and as I mentioned, it is a big value add to the business that you're only working with them and not helping their direct competitors. Although, how this plays out with vary based on the product/service being offered. Some services and products will not require a non-compete or geographic restrictions.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447559].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Mr. Enthusiastic
      Originally Posted by joshril View Post

      It's a big benefit to a client to have a "protected territory". You can add tremendous value and actually land more business by telling the client that you're interested in working with only 1 business category per geographic area.
      I can see the appeal if there are businesses where you only buy from one at a time, such as car repair shops. Wouldn't an exclusive deal be counterproductive for businesses that could all thrive with the same clientele, such as restaurants all over town? Can someone clarify a rule of thumb about when to think in terms of an exclusive deal?

      Chris
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1449048].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author joshril
        I don't really know if you could define a rule of thumb on when to offer your services exclusively and when not to offer an exclusive arrangement. In many cases it would make sense... especially if you are doing SEO for local keyword phrases.

        As you mentioned, just because you are working with a burger joint does not mean you could not work with a local pizza place. I think it really boils down to the level of overlap of keywords, geographic location, etc.

        If I'm a business owner and someone is driving traffic to my site utilizing online means, I don't want them driving traffic to my biggest local competitor's site. It's just not good business and opens up liability with trade secret issues, etc. for the consultant.

        As mentioned, some products/services will not require an exclusive agreement.


        Originally Posted by Mr. Enthusiastic View Post

        I can see the appeal if there are businesses where you only buy from one at a time, such as car repair shops. Wouldn't an exclusive deal be counterproductive for businesses that could all thrive with the same clientele, such as restaurants all over town? Can someone clarify a rule of thumb about when to think in terms of an exclusive deal?

        Chris
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1449261].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author charto911
    If you optimize for different sets of keywords and inform them of the matter it may be alright, besides you have a lot of the groundwork already laid out so that should make your job a lot easier.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1447840].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Mountainmotorman
    You have no non-compete with them and this is business! You get no monthly fee so it is NOT a conflict of interest by any definition I know of.... Hope this puts it in perspective for you. YOUR BUSINESS---YOUR RULES
    Signature

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1448192].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by Mountainmotorman View Post

      You have no non-compete with them and this is business! You get no monthly fee so it is NOT a conflict of interest by any definition I know of.... Hope this puts it in perspective for you. YOUR BUSINESS---YOUR RULES
      Sometimes it goes beyond pure legality. Sometimes you have to consider your rep within the business community. Even medium sized cities like Tampa/St. Pete can act more like overgrown small towns.

      Business owners gossip. Next to making money, it might be one of their favorite things to do.

      Since there is no ongoing retainer and it sounds like there are ways to accommodate both parties, I'd say work it out so everybody wins.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1448303].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author JRG
        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        Sometimes it goes beyond pure legality. Sometimes you have to consider your rep within the business community. Even medium sized cities like Tampa/St. Pete can act more like overgrown small towns.

        Business owners gossip. Next to making money, it might be one of their favorite things to do.

        Since there is no ongoing retainer and it sounds like there are ways to accommodate both parties, I'd say work it out so everybody wins.
        Yeah this is not some mom and pop shop that works with a certain part of town. This is a company that covers an enormous area and is well known by all of the competition so it is a customer worth keeping happy. In this case it is more like an "overgrown small town."

        Most likely after seeing the results I have already had with them they will be paying me on a monthly basis. But I thought I would get some advise on what others are doing anyway.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1450751].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author JRG
          And to the older guys who say

          These youngins are too hung up on the Internet, iPhones, Crackberries, etc... to understand true Marketing.
          Although I understand what you mean and slightly agree, you have to understand that us "youngins" will of course know online marketing much better than offline.

          This is also expected of us when it comes to clients. If I talk to a business owner about their marketing and start talking about direct mail and copy writing, not only have they heard that story by every marketing company who solicits them, but they also tend to trust a guy who has been marketing for 20 years when it comes to that.

          But when I start mentioning Google and autoresponders and PPC ads, their ears perk up. Why? Cause many of the old school marketers in the area haven't talked about that. They're still trying to sell them post cards. They also look at the internet as something the "youngins" control. lol

          As someone new to marketing I have a much better chance at landing a client with the online model and then when they trust me and see what I can do online, they let me advise them offline.

          Now eventually I do hope to be where someone like AP is and have the respect and track record to walk in and ask for $30,000. But I'm pretty sure you didn't do that on your first day, you had to work to that point.

          I know many of the online marketers do not plan on using both but that is a waste, there is money on the table still with offline marketing. In fact there are some nice services coming out that are bridging that gap, like a company I mentioned before Send Pepper.

          Outsourcing is of course big on the online model, although I still like to do some of the work myself. But many forget you can outsource offline too.

          And of course online is cheaper and if done correctly, more targeted. So I can work with a company that may not have a $30,000 budget and get them a great ROI on $1,000 and then work my way up to the $30,000 clients.

          So for me my plan is to use both, but starting out, the online way has been much easier to get my foot in the door and cheaper on the client so far.

          AP sounds like he has his act together and is using both very well. That is where I hope to be someday.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1450808].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author kellysharali
    Those are great ideas and I will definitely be jotting those down. I wonder if Dan Kennedy has some good marketing materials that I should read to help local businesses? Any other books or authors you would suggest?

    One really has to just sit down and think of how to help a local businesses (ex. restaurant). I am sure if I do that, I can come up with lots of ideas. I want to concentrate on one niche (restaurant, salons, bars, etc) and put my efforts into learning how to increase their sales. I have really studied sms marketing and I think a lot of businesses mentioned would be a great candidate for this kind of marketing. It is new and very under utilized.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1448208].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author DogScout
      Originally Posted by kellysharali View Post

      Those are great ideas and I will definitely be jotting those down. I wonder if Dan Kennedy has some good marketing materials that I should read to help local businesses? Any other books or authors you would suggest?
      Bill Glazer just published "Outrageous Advertising that's Outrageously Successful" Available at Amazon for around $15.00 or so. If you call the GKIC headquarters in Baltimore, I believe with purchase of 10 books (at $19.95 each) includes 3 or four day marketeers meeting in Orlando Jan 14th 2010. So for $200 you get great networking op, and 9 books to 'give' to good repeat and constant customers which they can implement in their own businesses. (with your help of course)

      Bill just wants to get on the best seller list before he retires... or so the story goes. Lol. If Interested check Small Business Marketing | Marketing For Small Business | Business Marketing for more info.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1450907].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Mr. Enthusiastic
    Thanks, that makes sense.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1449640].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    Keep in mind, Bill spares no expense. A Glazer campaign may cost 2-4 times as much as a 'traditional' one, but when the response rate is closer to 10%-20% than 1%, it begins to make a ton more sense.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1450915].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Jhf14
    My thoughts are this - never leave money on the table. Be creative about how you can make it work out. I would charge a high monthly retainer ($x,xxx) and say that with that you will not do work for competitors.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1450935].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    Once when pitching to lawyers, he could not get anything past the 'gatekeepers'. Not even Fed-Ex packs. So he bought a bunch of inexpensive DVD players, put the pitch on a DVD and put the DVD in each player and had those delivered by courier.

    Every player made it to the lawyer. It was expensive to do, but the campaign was highly profitable by the end. (It was a high dollar pitch). It's all about 'out of box' thinking. A well worn out phrase, but many who use it don't practice it.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1450937].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author JRG
      Originally Posted by DogScout View Post

      Once when pitching to lawyers, he could not get anything past the 'gatekeepers'. Not even Fed-Ex packs. So he bought a bunch of inexpensive DVD players, put the pitch on a DVD and put the DVD in each player and had those delivered by courier.

      Every player made it to the lawyer. It was expensive to do, but the campaign was highly profitable by the end. (It was a high dollar pitch). It's all about 'out of box' thinking. A well worn out phrase, but many who use it don't practice it.
      lol Now that's creative!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1451164].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author kellysharali
    As you can tell, I am new to this forum and I am amazed at all the ideas being thrown out here! You guys know what you are talking about and it is the out of the box thinking and just learning the basics of marketing that will help me succeed.

    Helping a local business owner getting an online presence is one thing, but you have to show educate them on how this will help them. Business owners are busy trying to run their business and when it comes to marketing their business, a lot of them are not very savvy. Give them a few basic ideas to incorporate into their business and this would be part of your consultation and I am sure they will come back to you when they see your ideas are working for them. When I first got into offline consulting, I could see the big potential in just letting restaurants know to start collecting email addresses so they can market to their customers over and over. Have them then sign up under your aweber affiliate link or another similiar company and earn residual commissions.

    Now that I think about it, that is just a drop in the bucket. You have to get your foot in the door with businesses and once you do, they will be a life long client of yours if you do things right.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1451292].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      The fact that you feel uncomfortable enough is probably a very good warning from your conscience to tread with caution.

      My guideline would be don't work with a direct "competitor" unless both parties agree to it.

      One thing you should be aware of is that many businesses that appear to be competitors on the surface actually serve different niches.

      If you find that situation and you can explain it effectively to both parties then you may be able to work with both businesses and get them to do joint ventures with each other for unconverted leads etc.

      But I think the most important thing is to maintain your integrity.

      In a local area you don't want or need a business owner telling everyone you screwed them by working with their competition.

      And you don't need that on your conscience either.

      Always do the right thing.

      Always do everything above board and honestly.

      That will pay dividends way beyond just one new client in the long run.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1451582].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author JRG
        Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

        The fact that you feel uncomfortable enough is probably a very good warning from your conscience to tread with caution.

        My guideline would be don't work with a direct "competitor" unless both parties agree to it.

        One thing you should be aware of is that many businesses that appear to be competitors on the surface actually serve different niches.

        If you find that situation and you can explain it effectively to both parties then you may be able to work with both businesses and get them to do joint ventures with each other for unconverted leads etc.

        But I think the most important thing is to maintain your integrity.

        In a local area you don't want or need a business owner telling everyone you screwed them by working with their competition.

        And you don't need that on your conscience either.

        Always do the right thing.

        Always do everything above board and honestly.

        That will pay dividends way beyond just one new client in the long run.

        Kindest regards,
        Andrew Cavanagh
        Thanks for posting Andrew. Yeah in this case I will be targeting the services that my current client does not offer and have already spoken with him about it. He actually knows the competitor and has no problem with that.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[1451710].message }}

Trending Topics