Top 3 things that SUCK about Offline Internet Marketing

30 replies
Ok well to be honest, over all I LOVE offline internet marketing.

I'm fairly new to it, but everything is going great so far.

I wanted to know if there is anyone on this forum who is an offline internet marketer that has at least a top 3 list of things that really annoy them about offline IM and even a top 3 list of things they like the most about offline internet marketing.


Mine:

Top 3 annoyances:

1. Cold calling
2. Getting turned down due to poor service from another offline internet marketer
3. Getting stubborn small business owners to understand the benefits of SEO, internet marketing, and an online presence

Top 3 things I like:

1. Helping local small businesses
2. Very flexible
3. Complete control and lots of human interaction

Can't wait to see what everyone comes up with....I'm also interested in any road blocks/bumps you've encountered that newbies to the offline scene may encounter.

*Cheers*
#internet #marketing #offline #things #top
  • Profile picture of the author Lou Diamond
    Hello,
    I do offline marketing and seo,when I cold call the first thing the owner says to me
    if you are selling something I am not buying.
    I just say to them I am here to make you money.
    That's when they start to listen.

    I am a ex car salesman and you have to have all of the objectives rolling off the tip of your tongue with no pauses and then you have them.

    Just keep practicing with anyone that will listen to you.
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    • Profile picture of the author NyceGuy
      Originally Posted by Lou Diamond View Post

      Hello,

      if you are selling something I am not buying.
      I just say to them I am here to make you money.
      That's when they start to listen.
      Of course, all of us, whether we realize it or not, always want to know what is in for us. The easiest way to catch the customer's attention is to first tell them how we can benefit them...make them money...help them lose weight etc.

      After all who likes to be sold?
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  • Profile picture of the author nicholasb
    we currently have 5 full time people who do just cold calling for us and we are getting a great response, we are not just limiting ourselves with local businesses though.

    we do deals all over the country, and not just seo we offer a ton of services including web design and creative marketing, there is nothing I hate about it it is always a blast.
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  • Profile picture of the author tecHead
    Might not eliminate your cold calling, but could significantly lessen it. A Warrior named George did a post about this technique in much detail, a while back, (you should search for it).

    Basically, you approach your local pizza shops and work out a deal to take over their "on box advertisements"; meaning those little flyer type sheets that come with every pizza box delivery. Work it out with other local advertisers to give them slots on the flyer; (this is so you're not fronting the production costs); and charge them a good rate. Do the math so you're maybe even making a little profit.

    You take the dominant ad spot. Advertise your services.

    Again, this is the simple version. Find George's post for the details.

    HTH
    PLP,
    tecHead
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    • Profile picture of the author smallbusinessfire
      Originally Posted by tecHead View Post

      Might not eliminate your cold calling, but could significantly lessen it. A Warrior named George did a post about this technique in much detail, a while back, (you should search for it).

      Basically, you approach your local pizza shops and work out a deal to take over their "on box advertisements"; meaning those little flyer type sheets that come with every pizza box delivery. Work it out with other local advertisers to give them slots on the flyer; (this is so you're not fronting the production costs); and charge them a good rate. Do the math so you're maybe even making a little profit.

      You take the dominant ad spot. Advertise your services.

      Again, this is the simple version. Find George's post for the details.

      HTH
      PLP,
      tecHead
      That's a pretty good one...I've never heard that one. I'll have to look into it!
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  • Profile picture of the author s4nt0s
    First of all I want to say this is an awesome post.

    I too have suffered the wrath of close minded business owners who don't want to hear a word I say regardless of my approach. Cold calling officially sucks!

    I would love to hear what other IMer's are having problems with in their offline ventures? What are the big obstacles that you have to face?

    I'm in the beginning stages of getting my feet wet in the big offline market and would love to hear what problems you face and how you've overcome them?

    Great post smallbusinessfire!
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    • Profile picture of the author Handsome J
      1) The inept contractors that have provided horrible results and service prior to my meeting a potential client.
      2) The scriptlance wannabes that cant deliver when you need them.
      3) The fact I have not started offline 10 years ago.
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      • Profile picture of the author jan roos
        Some business owners think they will get a website like staples.com for a couple grand. Making them understand the difference between flashy billboard websites and direct response sites is what I dislike the most. Other than that I dig the offline niche. Lots of money to be made.

        Cheers
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        • Profile picture of the author TimCastleman
          Instead of focusing on on what you don't like in offline marketing why don't you focus on the positive.

          Sure there are drawbacks but I don't worry about those, instead I focus on the positive and more importantly I focus on businesses that get it instead of trying to change the direction of the Titanic with a paddle.

          Focus on those who need and want your help - forget the rest.

          Tim
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          • Profile picture of the author Jagged
            Originally Posted by TimCastleman View Post

            Focus on those who need and want your help - forget the rest.
            Someone sends out 100 intro letters to local business owners...only 2 reply....
            we are to forget the other 98? No way!!
            They need you too...most just don't realize it yet.
            With a little eye opening education, they can see the benefits of your services...
            you just can't be affraid to work a little...
            I never throw away a potential customer...
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            • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
              One thing that you have to remember too is that even though you might only sell one product line...You have to make that one product line into 4

              Confused?

              A couple of examples....

              1. I was talking to a guy at a local tattoo parlor. I could show him hard evidence of local searches that I could help him benefit directly. So, I was able to sell him on the idea of additional leads/conversions into his shop. Done deal - Sold for $1000

              2. A locksmith came to our office to make us some extra keys. While he was there, one of my partners started talking to him about getting a website, BUT we couldn't find any evidence of local searches. So, are selling it to him as a "web presense" with no mention of leads. Basically he is getting a website to put on his business card to give the impression of him being bigger/more established than he really is.

              We are doing the exact same thing for both people, but packaging it differently. Your services won't mean the same thing to all people and can't be priced/pitched the same way either...
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            • Profile picture of the author letsgetitstarted
              Cold Calling

              Cold Calling

              Cold Calling

              oh, and cold calling!

              If you're selling any kind of internet service, try to explain you can send loads of leads their way instead of getting them on google, they understand that better.
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            • Profile picture of the author TimCastleman
              Originally Posted by Jagged View Post

              Someone sends out 100 intro letters to local business owners...only 2 reply....
              we are to forget the other 98? No way!!
              They need you too...most just don't realize it yet.
              With a little eye opening education, they can see the benefits of your services...
              you just can't be affraid to work a little...
              I never throw away a potential customer...
              Yawn.

              I never once said to forget the business owner, what I said is if they don't want your help forget about them. There are plenty of fish in the sea and plenty of businesses in your local and not so local area that want and need your help. So when someone says no thanks move on to the next one.

              Preach to the converted.
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  • #1: That it's thinly disguised as a J.O.B.

    You only get paid for the hours you put in (stupid simple cash cow for instance), what sort of long term business model is that?
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      I had to really stop and think about this one - most of the stuff listed here I've always regarded as going with the territory.

      So here are three of mine...

      1. One-trick ponies who think (fill in the blank) is the beginning and end of helping businesses. SEOs tend to be particularly myopic about this.

      2. Other consultants who pee in the pool by treating offline business owners like retarded children because they don't know all the IM jargon and need to understand how they get their money back before writing the check.

      3. Would-be clients who want me to work on spec, while they would never consider doing so themselves.

      Originally Posted by George Montagu Brown View Post

      #1: That it's thinly disguised as a J.O.B.

      You only get paid for the hours you put in (stupid simple cash cow for instance), what sort of long term business model is that?
      George, if that's how it's working for someone, they are doing it wrong.

      Web design, SEO, adding email marketing - those should be just the foot in the door, the icebreaker in what should be a long and profitable relationship for both parties.
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    • Profile picture of the author EndGame
      Originally Posted by George Montagu Brown View Post

      #1: That it's thinly disguised as a J.O.B.

      You only get paid for the hours you put in (stupid simple cash cow for instance), what sort of long term business model is that?
      Offline marketing is a thinly disguised job?

      I agree with John Mcabe, if that is how some one is doing it, then they are doing it wrong.

      I think perhaps you and many others on the forum don't appreciate the potential of the business model and I think that is often down to the way the business model is discussed here. I know several companies who in the last three years have gone from a revenue of zero, to 6 figures a year, with six figure profits.

      I know of one company that has a client that is worth £180,000 to them a year. Thats a pretty decent retainer to be receiving!

      As your business grows, employ people, outsource work and increase your sales. The trick/skill is to provide an on-going service to a client who needs it and is prepared to pay you a retainer. In this sense, the business model is much the same as many classic marketing and PR companies. There are companies paying tens of thousands of pounds for search engine optimization a month. I have a friend who worked in London and did almost £30 million worth of PPC business with a very famous pizza chain brand (They take 15% of that £30 million by the way).

      If the above doesn't sound like a good business model, I don't know what does.

      Can any ole' entrepreneur from this forum go to their local pizza shop and do these kinds of numbers? Not likely. But everyone has got to start some where.

      The business model is solid and very successful when applied correctly by the right people.

      So I would conclude, the business model is actually a very good long-term one.


      My dislikes about it though:

      1. The first contact. Be it cold calling or mail outs etc. I much prefer to network and meet potential clients that way.

      2. Chasing the money you are owed. Some clients just aren't going to pay and no number of legal letters etc can convince them to pay up. That can suck.

      3. The wait to hear back from the client. Some people will wait two months to get back to me to say if they want my services and more often than not, I won't have space in my calendar to fit them in.

      But for those minor negatives, there is a lot I love about it as well.
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      • Originally Posted by EndGame View Post

        Offline marketing is a thinly disguised job?

        I agree with John Mcabe, if that is how some one is doing it, then they are doing it wrong.

        I think perhaps you and many others on the forum don't appreciate the potential of the business model and I think that is often down to the way the business model is discussed here. I know several companies who in the last three years have gone from a revenue of zero, to 6 figures a year, with six figure profits.

        I know of one company that has a client that is worth £180,000 to them a year. Thats a pretty decent retainer to be receiving!

        As your business grows, employ people, outsource work and increase your sales. The trick/skill is to provide an on-going service to a client who needs it and is prepared to pay you a retainer. In this sense, the business model is much the same as many classic marketing and PR companies. There are companies paying tens of thousands of pounds for search engine optimization a month. I have a friend who worked in London and did almost £30 million worth of PPC business with a very famous pizza chain brand (They take 15% of that £30 million by the way).

        If the above doesn't sound like a good business model, I don't know what does.

        Can any ole' entrepreneur from this forum go to their local pizza shop and do these kinds of numbers? Not likely. But everyone has got to start some where.

        The business model is solid and very successful when applied correctly by the right people.

        So I would conclude, the business model is actually a very good long-term one.
        Still, you are still getting paid per hour to do more SEO/PPC for that person. It's not setting up an affiliate website, leaving it running and never touching it again. It's not really hands off.
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        • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
          Originally Posted by George Montagu Brown View Post

          Still, you are still getting paid per hour to do more SEO/PPC for that person. It's not setting up an affiliate website, leaving it running and never touching it again. It's not really hands off.
          George, you're painting the entire model with the same brush.

          If you trade dollars for hours, it doesn't make a difference whether the client is an online business or an offline business. There does tend to be more money and opportunity available working with physical businesses.

          On the other hand, if the consultant sets up a promotion, say for a pizza shop to look on the low end, that sells 100 more pizzas per month, and the consultant gets paid a percentage of each extra pizza for as long as the shop uses that promotion, it looks a lot like that magical affiliate site you describe.

          Online or offline, pay for performance models can yield big returns over a fee for service model.

          Which circles back to my original position...

          If you set up your business so that you only get paid when you work, you're doing it wrong.

          Jay Abraham recently started an apprentice program aimed at teaching students to make upfront fees and ongoing retainers/royalties.

          Clayton Makepeace has a program for copywriters that teaches the same thing - his way of landing clients and getting paid on the results obtained, in the form of ongoing royalties.

          Even that magical affiliate site you described is going to take some maintenance - algorithms change, vendors come and go, products come and go, security holes come up. You may not have to actively work it for stretches of time, but I haven't seen a true 'set it and forget it' model over the long term.
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        • Profile picture of the author EndGame
          Originally Posted by George Montagu Brown View Post

          Still, you are still getting paid per hour to do more SEO/PPC for that person. It's not setting up an affiliate website, leaving it running and never touching it again. It's not really hands off.
          George what you are describing is more in-keeping with a freelancer's business model. What I am talking about is building a business that leverages it's resources, staff and infrastructure to make more money and grow itself.
          Thats a model that a lot of businesses use, long-term and short-term.

          It is a business model, and a good long-term one at that. Not dissimilar to the business model of many ad and marketing agencies out there today.
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  • Profile picture of the author romanzick
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    • Profile picture of the author TimCastleman
      Guys this is a really a mindset thing.

      Rejection happens - a lot in any business, at any time, for many reasons.

      Think about this - in business, in life, to an idea, in everything there isn't a second that goes by that someone isn't telling people no.

      Now you can focus on that if you want. You can dwell on these facts and let it prevent action on your part or give you a reason never to get started in the first place.

      OR ...

      You can focus on the ones who are interested, the ones who say yes, the ones who are willing and want to give you money.

      When I started dating again after my first marriage I got shot down a ton. I mean I heard no so much it started sounding like yes.

      Most were nice about it, a few weren't.

      Now I could of stopped right there and done nothing.

      But nothing worth finding is in your comfort zone.

      Instead I pressed on. I didn't focus on the no's because I knew that women were in abundance. Seriously I could get rejected by 100,000 women and there would still be millions more to go through.

      The result - I found and married the woman of my dreams. None of that would of been possible without focusing on the yeses and the positive things I was doing and forgetting the negatives.

      Try it, it might just change your life.
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  • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
    Look,

    Sales is the driving force of business. Without salespeople
    and their skills, and the big brass ones to go out and prospect,
    business growth would grind to a halt.

    Sales takes guts. That's why doing it terrifies many, many
    people. But the truth stands - unless somebody is there
    moving the sales process forward for your business, your
    growth will be fitful... and in tough times it will be really
    hard for you.

    Get a CLUE about sales. It's totally true that cold-calling
    sucks. I've hired salesmen in the past who claimed they
    loved cold-calling... well, when a guy tells you that it means
    he's hungry to make money, but he's lying about his love
    for the cold call. Truth is, prospecting sucks, and the more
    your marketing supports your sales personnel, the more
    they'll be inclined to stick around and do the work you
    need them to do.

    Expecting sales people, without support from you, to build
    your business on a commission-only basis is just plain
    foolish thinking.
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  • Profile picture of the author iw433
    Great post guys. Although I know about all of the negatives it is good to be reminded every once in a while. "It's not personal, it's business."
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

      Tim, do they know each other? :p
      Originally Posted by TimCastleman View Post

      Out of everything I said in the message you focus on my grammar?
      Seriously, you made a great point. It's just that particular typo caught my attention. Freudian slip, maybe?

      Feel that tug on your leg? That's me...
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  • Profile picture of the author Joseph Ratliff
    Originally Posted by smallbusinessfire View Post

    Ok well to be honest, over all I LOVE offline internet marketing.

    I'm fairly new to it, but everything is going great so far.

    I wanted to know if there is anyone on this forum who is an offline internet marketer that has at least a top 3 list of things that really annoy them about offline IM and even a top 3 list of things they like the most about offline internet marketing.


    Mine:

    Top 3 annoyances:

    1. Cold calling
    2. Getting turned down due to poor service from another offline internet marketer
    3. Getting stubborn small business owners to understand the benefits of SEO, internet marketing, and an online presence

    Top 3 things I like:

    1. Helping local small businesses
    2. Very flexible
    3. Complete control and lots of human interaction

    Can't wait to see what everyone comes up with....I'm also interested in any road blocks/bumps you've encountered that newbies to the offline scene may encounter.

    *Cheers*
    Top 3 things I like:

    1. It's an easily scalable business model where you can use JV's or even hire people to do some of the work with you and take on more and more projects.

    2. When you target the market correctly, the business owners you interact with are a pleasure to share resources with and learn from as well...leading to other "automatic opportunities".

    3. And yes, I love the social aspect of this business model as well. It's not a "by yourself" business, you're interacting with people quite a bit.

    On the "marketing for clients" topic I did it "old school" with 2-step marketing:

    1. By having the business owner call a 800-number and get a free report mailed to them (not so much) and following up on interested parties...

    2. Or I just hand-delivered the report to a concentrated group of local prospects after researching what I could using an online database from my local library (they subscribe to Reference USA).
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    The off line marketers in this forum aside,
    I run into a LOT of 'SEO' companies that do not keep up with the changing times. They end up being ineffective and many times give those who do care that we deliver value for a buck, a bad name. I have seen contracts for $20.000 that contain zero off page SEO, zero off-line marketing, Zero lead capturing, just a 20-40 page information site and bye-bye.

    So the 'trust' issue is usually a hurdle for people that have been burnt before. For that reason, I prefer referrals. I also prefer local businesses so I can 'hang out' at their place when I want and shoot videos or verify business listings etc. One client a long way a way is still not listed in several business directories because he is either too busy to send me the verification number or they lose it. (So I got to go to a sunny location this winter to rectify that. It's a tough life sometimes.). Lol. Also because I like to do the graphics for their off-line printing which saves them a ton of money. I really like throwing in freebies as they come up sometimes. I have trademarked stuff for people gratis. It is easy, takes no time and means the world to them. It is fun when they have a problem that is beyond me and I drop by with a book that has the solution in it and hand it to them. Accepting no payment for the book, just because I was thinking about their problem and found a possible answer and wanted to share it with them. (Try to fired after that.)

    The great part is watching a small business grow as a direct result of your involvement. When done right and in an on-going basis the need to cold call drops off dramatically. (Actually, I have never found a need to cold call. At least not for the last 10 years or so. I get them and when I do I ask them why they are still cold calling? The answers are fascinating.) There is almost no business that cannot use one of you continually. Every week the SEs change their algorithm. Other competitors enter or leave your client's market and if you are able to get involved in their 'off-line' sales and marketing, you become their own little sales team. Your worth to them is huge and way more than you are likely to charge. This is especially true as there are businesses run by people that are afraid to sell, and there are a lot of those around. (I am an ex-car guy, too. Selling is second nature... well first nature really. Lol)

    At the same time, the time it takes to deliver, what to them is 40 hours worth of value, may take just a few. That allows you to both get paid well AND over-deliver on your services. (and at the same time enjoy some extra free time.) If you are willing to continually keep your knoweldge current, where in my experience most are not, your 'expertise' is always in demand. The best way I like to think of it is like, I sell $100 bills to my clients for $20.

    What's not to like? If a client has unreasonable expectations or doesn't like what you do, you don't work for them. I usualy don't 'sell' a client. I 'sell' FOR a client. Lol. I don't need the aggravation of a client with unreasonable exceptions. There are plenty of companies around here ready to take his money.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jackie Tulos
    I think these are all great ideas and valid points. However, my goal is to get a system in place and then hire some one to manage it for me. Therefor it will not be a job but, a long term business with a revenue stream.
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  • Profile picture of the author MarkAse
    Cold calling is definitely the worst! I can say that as IMers having more human/human interaction is definitely a good thing. It can get lonely writing by yourself all day!
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