Offline Warriors - How do you get clients? Seriously :)

57 replies
Hey Warriors,

I got laid off this week, and I'm taking my IM knowledge offline to make some green. I refuse to stand in line at the local unemployment office, or look for another 9-5!

I've read the offline gold and similar reports, I've tried mailers in the past, and also tried leads from sales genie, but Im looking for something new. I don't like cold calling - so that's out for me.

I want to know what you do to get offline clients. I've heard of going to BNI meetings, chamber of commerce meetings, and using meetup.com but I want someone who's actually out there doing this for a living.

What else can I do? If I were a business owner, I wouldn't want someone walking into my storefront trying to sell me on social media & SEO, so Im not sure that walking into businesses is the proper thing either.

I really need to know what works and get a hand-full of clients paying me $1500 - $3000 per month for services.


Thanks in advance.
#clients #offline #warriors
  • Profile picture of the author Nic Lynn
    Referrals are always best, but...

    1. Speaking engagements in front of warm leads are fantastic (not just chamber meetings, but specific workshops that you put together)

    2. Creative, concise, extremely targeted direct mail works surprisingly well (think post card type marketing)

    3. AND in-store walk ins can work... IF you are a customer. For example, when finishing up a meal at a non-franchise restaurant, call the owner over and ask him about his marketing and the thoughts you had about his establishment while eating this great meal).

    4. The easiest for you may be to hire sales reps on a commission structure to book you an appointment -- either the appointment itself is a $500 consult with the rep taking 50%, or the appt results in a sale/agreement of which the rep gets a re-occurring 10% (the numbers are examples, you can negotiate whatever you can negotiate).
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  • Profile picture of the author Jagged
    Do a search in your area for any meetups (meetup.com). Sign up for some of the business networking groups....good way to get in front of a group of 10-25 at a time.

    Also...check into your local chamber of commerce....most are having "networking breakfasts, lunches, speed networking sessions, etc....usually get a large response to these, another good lead generation method...

    Do a targeted search in Google for what ever niche you want (chiropractors, dentists, lawyers, hair salons, etc...), look at the google 10-box or 7-box results....look particularly at the ones that have maps.google.com. This is a good indication that they do not have a website...contact them in person or by direct mailing....

    Or...if you know of specific business in your area that when you do a simple keyword search, they do not show at all in the google 10 / 7-box....contact them about gtting listed on page 1 with Google local business center.....also offer Yahoo local & bing local listings....

    Just a few...good luck,
    ~ken
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    • Profile picture of the author Julie Suplour
      Get in touch with advertising companies in your area that don't offer web services. Ask them to refer any customers looking for these services to you for a fee.

      There is enough methods just in these few posts for you to start generating some leads. It's just a matter of getting out there and getting it done. Don't stop when the first 3 things you do don't produce anything.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
    Thank you all so much! I will try some of these tomorrow!
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  • Profile picture of the author Jagged
    Come back & let us know how you make out Tim. What worked...what didn't work & so on......Good luck,

    ~ken
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    • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
      Originally Posted by Jagged View Post

      Come back & let us know how you make out Tim. What worked...what didn't work & so on......Good luck,

      ~ken

      Will do! Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    Not too hard. Call a few local companies until the phone call isn't being answered correctly. Then do a keyword search for that biz, see if he is missing a few COMMERCIAL keywords with decent search. See if he is in Google Biz, Yahoo Biz and Bing Biz listings as well as maybe 50 or so other local biz listings.

    Sooner or later, (probably sooner if the phone is answered incorrectly) Call and ask to speak to the person in charge. (whose name you already know). When he is on the line, introduce yourself, but not what you do. Ask a few client type questions. Mention you are sure he has gotten emails and or calls about his website and having it place higher in the rankings for a number of keywords. This is where it gets tricky because if he wasn't aware it was a sales call, he is now. Assure him that is NOT why you are calling him, as an aside mention you do do that, but that you are pretty sure he is missing some business that unless he is not experiencing the recession most of us are, you could help him retain.
    At this point you should have his curiosity up. Assure him you don't need any money and would like to meet with him for 90 minutes or so uninterrupted and talk with him about it. A negative response and let him know if he changes his mind he can have your number if he wants it. If he wants it, give it, if not wish him a great day and move on.
    Eventually you will procure a meeting. Before the meeting be sure to call several times as a potential client and make a note of every faux pas. The meeting is nothing but having him fill out a questionnaire. Actually you ask him the questions and write them down. Then schedule a 2nd meeting. Do NOT ask for money.
    At the second meeting you point out all the mistakes you have identified through your calls and the questionnaire. Go through them point by point. at about halfway through; some of the problems are on-line problems. Ranking, lack of social media, backlinks, email campaigns, etc. (always let on you are a big fan of 'free'). Basically take a good 30- 45 minutes and hurt him bad.
    Then go on to part two, solutions. Phone training and fixing any other profit leaks you have identified. About halfway through you start moving into the on-line stuff.
    When talking about keyword ranking be sure to say you could have him rank for 100 keywords tomorrow, unfortunately, no one entering those keywords is buying anything. 99% are students researching a paper, that is why it is so easy to rank for them.
    Then propose he hire you to A-fix his current problems (even if it means spending 4 hours teaching the desk person how to answer a phone and to do so with-in 2 rings.) As well as instituting other procedures that will plug the profit leaks in the business he all ready has and is not getting the most from. Teach the sales staff how to up-sell/down-sell and cross sell. whatever will make an immediate difference and B- to increase his on line presence. At this point feel free to ask for a check.
    As you go through each solution to a problem (vaugely) ask him what percent he feels fixing that problem will net him. Before you have even hit the on-line stuff you should be up to 20-40%. In a 1 mil company (Very small) that is 200-400k that HE has given you as what he thinks will be saved by fixing those problems. You are NOT telling him, he's telling you! If you want ask him what it would be worth for him to hire you to fix those problems AND wave your hand up the sheet and mention we are only hlafway into our (notice 'our') solutions. His answer may very well be larger than you would have charged him. If so ask him to have a check drawn up while you draw up a contract "and oh... BTW... there is a $1497 (or whatever) monthly fee in addition, but I am sure you can see the value in that." (As if he is astute enough to realize it is obvious)
    If his answer to what you would be worth is too high, back it down a bit. If not high enough, tell him he is close. Decide whether the amount he says the service is worth is worth your time. If so, concede you will do him a favor on this deal.

    Stay in control throughout the process. YOU are the expert. 1st start plugging profit leaks. You should be able to make instant increases in his net if you found the right company, know how to answer a phone and sell. meanwhile work on the on-line stuff at your lesiure. Out source as much as you can. If the biz doesn't have a Twitter and/or face book page, that's two easy things that are tangible the person hiring you can see. Do a Press release or two, some article marketing, back-linking, etc. each month for your $1497 do a little more each month. Go for a one year contract, 6 months if you have to, but if he is chopping you, he may understand that the majority of the work is done the 1st 60-90 days.

    I'd do more public speaking... but the damn
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  • Profile picture of the author JustMint
    Great post on offline techniques as always DogScout. Thanks.

    When you set up facebook for offline businesses - what works best? A regular page to link with clients etc, or a fanpage?
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    When you make a fan page, you end up having to make a personal page for him. Make his birth-date wrong but close, as much as possible private and email him a link and the user name and password.
    You can take most of the info for the fan page right off his website usually
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  • Profile picture of the author Mr. Enthusiastic
    DogScout: Wow, Mark, that is one of the most comprehensive & powerful guides to offline sales that I've ever seen. It looks like every element of the recipe has been careful tweaked to maximize results. This could be a superb WSO, yet you're sharing the model here for free. Thank you!

    What kind of % rates are you finding - calls to appointments, appointments to sales presentation, presentation to closing a deal?

    Nic, in your experience, how open are business owners to spending $500 "just for advice" with a paid consultation model?
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  • Profile picture of the author DogScout
    charge 10-30%what you save him a year. He thinks you will save him 200k the 1st year, 1497 x 12 = 17,964; get 13k upfront (if you can-that is 15% -997 x 12 =$11964 at 10% get 8k upfront) ... be flexible, especially the 1st go around. As you keep doing this your confidence will grow and grow.) if it is a little mom & pop and you get 1k up front and $500 a month, it is training for you and they may can afford it. Many will be skeptical, even after they are the ones giving you the numbers. Plus the ones that need it the most really can't afford big upfront fees. Be kind, be gracious, be helpful but feed your family and make the car payment.
    (If it is a tiny business and operating on a shoe string and after a 2nd meeting your gut says he is a man of his word, take a chance on him. I do a client for a monthly fee only, no upfront. I did a month of different things before he gave me the 1st payment. Worse case I spent a few hours for free. best case, I have a client for life. 10 clients for life at 1k is $120,000 year and maybe 10-15 hours of work a month.

    Close one customer. referrals will be all you will ever have time for after one.

    (Forget the one time $500 deals, may as well get a job)
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    • Profile picture of the author donhutchinson
      DogScout: a distilled course in consulting - excellent.
      GoGetta: 4-ways to get moving.

      Tim: take action on the info in this thread and you'll get results. Then review, refine and do it again.

      Good luck,
      Don
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  • Profile picture of the author GoGetta
    Hi,

    Thought I would chime in with my experience,

    If you have just been laid off, I think you need to do everything possible to gain clients. I did something similar when I got into this, I didn't get laid off, I just quit. I then did everything I could to gain clients as I didn't have any other choice, except going back to the 9-5!

    Cold Calling - I don't mind it, most hate it, everyone is different. But, if you think logically, its probably the quickest way you can set up a few meetings with potentially interested business owners.

    You can pick up the phone right now, today, and potentially setup a few meetings. Not everyone gets it right first time, but like with anything, persistance pays off!

    JUST BE YOURSELF!

    Sure, you will get NOs, so what, its another NO that leads to a YES, just keep going!

    Meetups/Chamber Meetings
    - These work and are great for networking, but can take a little to get your foot in the door. The chances are, there is almost always at least another few "Web Guys" already with their foot in the door. This business is actually more competitive than many think.

    There is plenty of biz to go around, but local meetups and chamber meetings can take a while to get your foot in the door, they do work though. While youproactively go out and call clients, setup a few meetings as well!

    **So, far 2 ways to get clients in the motions**

    Classified Sites - Post ads daily on Craigsslist or if your in the UK, Gumtree. This will generate enquiries, but like anything, you can't expect to see diamonds from one ad, you need to keep posting. Do this in the background of your cold calling and meeting setups!

    **3 Client Gaining Ways in Motion**

    Ask Friends & Family - Find out if any of your close friends or family have a business, or know anyone that has a business. This can be a quick way to gain a portfolio, some testimonials and of course, some moula! ; )

    **4 Ways In Motion**

    Ok, I am sure you get the picture. If you really want this and want clients, you can get them, anyone is capable. You just need to do everything possible to get them. Depending on how quick you need to get them, mabe you will have to do things you don't necessarily like doing, but they pay off, that's business!

    I hate article marketing, but it generates online sales, so I have to do it! When you gain clients, you can get other people to do the jobs you hate for you!

    Do whatever it takes to succeed!


    I say all this from experience, doing all of the above and doing whatever it took to get my offers in front of business owners allowed me to quit my day job in 7 days!

    It's possible, you just need to DO IT!

    Hope that helps,

    Good Luck! ; )

    GoGetta
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    • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
      Originally Posted by GoGetta View Post

      Cold Calling - I don't mind it, most hate it, everyone is different. But, if you think logically, its probably the quickest way you can set up a few meetings with potentially interested business owners.
      Do you have a sample script you'd mind sharing. I will cold call even though I hate it. I gotta eat ya know :p
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  • Profile picture of the author thunderbird
    Some great ideas here.

    I find just casually chatting it up with a business owner *after* giving them some business can get nice results. Just saying something like "I haven't checked out your website yet. What is it?" got me gigs.

    As for strategy, I've come across very different schools of thought from successful IM marketers for offline businesses. One is get in cheap, create site or offer initial IM services for a bargain, get results build up trust with business owner, then offer extra services at extra cost. Net spreads wide, small money from lots of businesses adds up. One person I know (and you probably know too) has literally cornered the market of an entire country this way. The other approach is cater primarily to profitable businesses with significant advertising budget, reaching them through networking channels (eg business associations, yacht clubs, what have you).

    Me? I basically like helping small businesses, so I personally don't take the route of schlepping my way into exclusive equestrian clubs (as I saw a guy on reality show Housewives of Orange County do) or whatnot. While it's not where you'll find a peasant like me, that is where the real gold is for sure. Don't worry about fitting in and NEVER be apologetic about who you are. If you're a Neanderthal, own it and flaunt it, and they'll love you for it.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
    Another question. Do I incorporate a biz name, or just have cards made as an independent consultant. Some businesses prefer independents, while some will only work with another biz. What say you?
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    • Profile picture of the author sdentrepreneur
      I use most of the above, I didn't see visiting BNI International - Business Networking and Referrals or Business Networking and Business Referrals by LeTip International, Inc. Groups mentioned. I also created a basic website to send to offline clients My Business Marketing - My Business Marketing

      I charge between $1,500 to $4,000 per month to my clients.
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      • Profile picture of the author Riz
        Hi,

        1) Aside from the ideas already stipulated above one of the best methods to start your offline business is to start with business owners you already know. This takes away the cold calling aspect.

        You could possibly start your first client without charge to use as a testimonial and offer the services in return for referrals. This will quickly get you in front of more prospects.

        2) As mentioned above by other posters, one of the best methods of getting clients is via seminars.

        Now, how can you easily fill a room?

        There are many ways to do this but here is one of the easiest and most lucrative.

        JV with another business owner who has business clients, ie accountant, printers etc. They have a ready made list of clients that they can market your seminar to.

        How the JV works?

        You can then either charge for the seminar (50/50 profit split).

        Provide a free seminar and sell the attendees on the backend (%age split on fees achieved between you and your JV partner)

        Have a paid seminar with all proceeds from sales going to your JV partner. You will then get to keep 100% of all backend sales.

        Hope that helps.

        Riz
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    • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      Another question. Do I incorporate a biz name, or just have cards made as an independent consultant. Some businesses prefer independents, while some will only work with another biz. What say you?
      Disclaimer: I am not an attorney nor an account.

      There's no reason to incorporate at this early stage. It's just adds headaches at tax time.

      You can register a fictitious name with most states (DBA or "doing business as"). You'll need to do this before you can set up a bank account in that business' name.

      A business name isn't what will give you credibility with your prospects, however. Lack of one is just an excuse for not getting started. I know. I used that excuse when I kept avoiding pulling the trigger.

      I still operate under my name. Think of it as "personal branding."
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    • Profile picture of the author Nic Lynn
      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      Another question. Do I incorporate a biz name, or just have cards made as an independent consultant. Some businesses prefer independents, while some will only work with another biz. What say you?
      Tim, at some point you should likely form an LLC for liability protection as your client base grows, but that is a much longer conversation where you are going to have to do some due diligence as to what legal entity is right for you.

      As far as how you present yourself to the the prospect and what your title/status is, I actually just put up a free WSO today on how to exactly position yourself with offline prospects. It even discusses that very issue (short answer: don't use any title, including consultant). Check the link out in my sig or PM me if you don't want to deal with the WSO.
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      • Profile picture of the author Sink or Swim
        Great info in this thread. From this, the thread started by Dexx, and all the knowledge shared by everyone, I am going to be able to lay out a business plan.

        Have a construction company lined up (wife's grandfather's cousin owns it--her grandfather is a figurehead in the Korean community) that grosses 1m/yr.

        Also going to work something in with my doctor at my appt, and wife and kid have to go to the dentist soon (before COBRA runs out). Plus I am going to hit the restaurants and specialty shops in town. This is like a 'business in a thread'.

        Thank you all for putting it all together for me.
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        • Profile picture of the author DogScout
          Originally Posted by Sink or Swim View Post

          This is like a 'business in a thread'.
          Don't give Allen any ideas
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          • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
            Originally Posted by DogScout View Post

            Don't give Allen any ideas
            Ha! I love that.


            So, here's what I accomplished today.

            1. Designed and paid for new biz cards
            2. Made phone calls to a few friends & family to get biz leads - no luck
            3. Started designing a personal website that lists services, etc.
            4. Got 100 free leads from sales genie that I'm going to mail to, though that is not a lot, but it's a start
            5. Complied a list of dentists that i "used" to work for. Will contact them next week.

            I figure this is a decent start to make contact Monday & early next week. I will keep you guys in the loop with any new info.


            What do you guys think about marketing over the weekend? I kind of want to stay away from restaurant owners because of the local competition, but since it's sink or swim time - I'm not turning anything down.

            Thank you all so much for the advice and tips! It's so refreshing to be a part of this community of marketing minds.
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            • Profile picture of the author Sink or Swim
              I was going to hit my local restaurants today, but it snowed and school was cancelled so I built a snowman with my son at the park.

              Yesterday I asked one of the servers at a pizza / restaurant near my gym, 'how's business,' he said monday thru wednesday are slow. They don't have a website but they are the only restaurant in town.

              Took a peak at the counter (mail had just been delivered), and found Ms. owner's name. Have spoken with her often but never known her name. No website, etc.

              I found some review sites and wrote a few articles.

              Besides from all the restaurants on the strip there are specialty stores, like one with unique glass and iron sculptures. Gonna check those out for Monday.

              Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

              Ha! I love that.


              So, here's what I accomplished today.

              1. Designed and paid for new biz cards
              2. Made phone calls to a few friends & family to get biz leads - no luck
              3. Started designing a personal website that lists services, etc.
              4. Got 100 free leads from sales genie that I'm going to mail to, though that is not a lot, but it's a start
              5. Complied a list of dentists that i "used" to work for. Will contact them next week.
              I figure this is a decent start to make contact Monday & early next week. I will keep you guys in the loop with any new info.


              What do you guys think about marketing over the weekend? I kind of want to stay away from restaurant owners because of the local competition, but since it's sink or swim time - I'm not turning anything down.

              Thank you all so much for the advice and tips! It's so refreshing to be a part of this community of marketing minds.
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              • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
                Originally Posted by Sink or Swim View Post

                Yesterday I asked one of the servers at a pizza / restaurant near my gym, 'how's business,' he said monday thru wednesday are slow. They don't have a website but they are the only restaurant in town.
                I could be wrong, but if they are the only place in town, they wouldn't necessarily need a website with SEO because odds are everyone in town already knows they are there :p
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                • Profile picture of the author Sink or Swim
                  Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

                  I could be wrong, but if they are the only place in town, they wouldn't necessarily need a website with SEO because odds are everyone in town already knows they are there :p
                  She's a nice woman and a widow to boot. I wouldn't mind helping her get more business from google maps and autoresponders. would be my first account anyway, maybe she could pay me in pizza and reviews.
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                  • Profile picture of the author Sink or Swim
                    Only restaurant in town, but a sh!tty area.
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                  • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
                    Originally Posted by Sink or Swim View Post

                    She's a nice woman and a widow to boot. I wouldn't mind helping her get more business from google maps and autoresponders. would be my first account anyway, maybe she could pay me in pizza and reviews.

                    Haha! I'd accept pizza, wings, and beer as payment!
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  • Profile picture of the author MJ Sterling
    For me most of my web design and SEO work came through word of mouth..

    On average for every one happy customer you'll get another six through word of mouth. Once upon a time that alone was enough for me to quit the nine to five rat race crappy office JOB and go it alone.
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  • Profile picture of the author Adam Nolan
    I hire staff on commission base only. I've got about 4 working for me now and I'm pulling in 2-3 contracts a month at 2500 upfront and 250 recurring.
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  • Profile picture of the author Toby Lewis
    Word of mouth and referrals are definitely the best way to go. Here's a trick I learnt right here on the forum:

    Approach a community, a church or a charity group that doesn't have a website. Offer a free website to the person in charge. Yes. FREE. You can host it and knock up something nice and simple in wordpress which shouldn't take much.

    Now you've got your name on the bottom of the site, and everyone in the club will be talking about the fancy new site and how great it is. All the business owners in the club will want one just like it for their business, or they'll have a friend that is looking for new site. It doesn't matter, word spreads - just make sure they know who you are and can get in contact with you.

    To sweeten the deal, tell the person in charge that you'll donate XX% of the fee to their cause for anyone they refer, that way they'll actively be thinking about the people they know that need a site.

    That's the "idea", it's up to you to be a bit savvy. Go for things like horse or boating clubs that might have more of the business type people (although churches generally have a good cross section). Get amongst the club, talk to people, get your face seen. When the site is launched, get a blurb in their newsletter explaining the new features and include your contact details.

    The easiest place to start is friends, friends of friends, family, clubs you're in, clubs your parents are in etc. Just recently I did a 5 page wordpress site for an aspiring actor friend who sent 3 referrals in a week! 2 other small actor site, and 1 business that wanted an eCommerce site
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  • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
    Hey Dogscout, what you've recommended here is what I call
    "stalling", which is an amazing selling technique for the complex
    sale. I don't think I've ever made a sale to a person who wasn't
    hot to buy - because I'm not really that smooth at selling in
    person... All my sales at bigger-ticket rates come as a result
    of gradually winning the client over and at some point the client
    comes out and admits "I'm desperate/ready to move forward on
    solving this problem," - and then the sale is not hard to clinch.

    I think you only ever sell to a hot prospect. You learn to get a
    feeling for the pace the prospect is moving at and YOU move a
    little bit SLOWER, which applies pressure to HIM, and then he,
    if you've installed desire, HE puts pressure on YOU to get started
    and solve his problem.

    Of course the check comes naturally.

    I'm not saying I'm an expert at this or anything - just that it
    is something I've been observing and thinking about and working
    to develop as my personal selling system. It fits my personality
    and skills because I don't do well with the "pushy" sales approach.
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  • Profile picture of the author Josh T.
    Dogscout, et al.

    Incredibly helpful thread. Thank you for this. Got my thinkin' wheels moving for sure. I've tried a number of methods from offline WSO's, but there's probably more value in this thread than stuff I've paid $17 for.

    Thanks again guys.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
    Well I have been busy this last week! Im finishing up on the website with a lot of my time, and I picked up a client from asking around family and friends! I'm redesigning a website (easy one too), and charging a monthly maintenance fee for backlinks only (that Im going to outsource). Im only charging him $500 for the site redesign and $125/mo because he is a friend of one of my good friends.

    Its not much, but it's a start. He is a small biz owner, so he knows people that will hopefully one day turn into referrals.

    Thank you to everyone again for your tips. I still plan to approach biz owners, hopefully this week. I have been delaying due to the site not being done as soon as I expected. I will keep those interested posted on my results weekly.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Riddle
    Tim,

    This is not a direct answer to your question, yet it is crucial to your long term success.

    DON'T BE A WEB SITE SALES PERSON!

    Focus on getting profits to your clients.

    You can increase profits before a website is launched.

    Simple things, like a uniform way to answer the phone, or my fav list of Cash register questions that will boost profits.

    Websites can be seen as commodities, then you are competing with high school kids and off shore workers.

    Get to know what business the people are really in (Most shoe stores aren't in the shoe business, they are in the make a woman feel complete business).

    Congrats on making progress, keep at it and you WILL Succeed.

    Mark Riddle
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    • Profile picture of the author McBrett
      @Tim - I feel your pain on this one. I went through pretty much your exact situation last year.

      I think @NickLynn has some great advice. Referrals is what has worked best for me by far.

      One thing I do is simply let people know what I do. Dinner parties, the bar, friends of friends... Let them know that you are an expert in internet marketing and search engines. You'll be surprised at how people will offer out leads and provide referrals for people you can help. Of course, this is more of a long term strategy. It sounds like you need clients now.

      If you're going to be approaching businesses. Set up a professional website and gather up your past clients or people you've worked for. Let your past clients know you've set up shop for yourself and are looking for clients. Again, just ask your past clients if they know of anyone who might be in need of your services. Don't demand an answer immediately, but be sure to follow up regularly. You've got to train clients to be on the look out for you.

      Chamber of commerce is a great idea. It's a strategy I'm still trying to hone for myself though. I can't really speak on it from personal experience. Although I have offered to do some free work for the Junior Chamber in my town. I'm hoping to build up good will with a new network of people and also get a reference on their website.

      If you're looking for clients fast, go after small businesses. Larger ones will be RFP after conference call after meeting. This is a huge waste of time in my experience and if you don't have notable past clientele they won't be interested.

      My advice would be to get to know a local niche like lawyers in your town. They're everywhere and they all need websites. Send them an email with a short 2 - 3 page white paper explaining how their competition is being listed for "town name lawyer" or "town name attorney" and they are not. Therefore they are losing out on business.

      If you need to drum up biz fast for SEO. Play on their competition.
      Signature
      www.500aMonth.com - This is my blog.
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  • Profile picture of the author sdentrepreneur
    I created a program that I sell to offline businesses. It's called MyBusinessMarketing.
    I charge between $1,000 to $2,500 per month to retail businesses, self employed and larger companies.

    My Business Marketing - My Business Marketing

    My clients find me from my own marketing efforts but I also go to local Business Networking and Business Referrals by LeTip International, Inc. and BNI International - Business Networking and Referrals as well as Chamber of Commerce.
    It really helps to brand yourself as a leader with Social Media like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn SD Entrepreneur - James Hickey ? Internet Marketing Expert and Mentor

    This helps you get credibility with your clients. People will research you before they hire you. Good luck my friends.
    Signature

    Learn to become Digital, Internet and Social Media Marketing Consultant to Business Owners
    Click here to learn more - Internet, Digital and Social Media Marketing Training Course

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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      If you're serious about making money you need to stop trying to gather more information and start taking action immediately.

      Here's why...

      Every person in every area is in a different situation, has a different set of skills and will get different results with exactly the same actions.

      Anything that puts you in contact with business owners in any way gives you a chance of getting hired.

      Your highest chance of getting hired is if you've been recommended by another business owner.

      So that leads to:

      # 1: Ask everyone you talk to who they know who might benefit from your knowledge.

      Referrals are the easiest to convert to paying clients.

      The easiest way to get started from zero is to talk to people and business owners you already know...

      # 2: Talk to the business owners you already know.

      # 3: Talk to the owners of businesses where you're spending money (as was mentioned above...if you're a customer spending money they're far more likely to want to talk to you and you can lead into a business conversation more naturally when you're already talking about a product or service you're buying).


      # 4: Ask all your friends who they might know.

      OfflineBiz.com members use the Offline Gold Client Flood system to do this but the bottom line is that you systematically ask for referrals from every living breathing person you know when you're starting out.

      Also remember that the advice you give when you first talk to a prospect is free so when you're asking for referrals you can offer to give the business owners people know a valuable gift consultation on their behalf.


      # 5: Go to business networking meetings and any meetings and groups where business owners congregate.

      Getting involved with a charity or two that has a lot of business owners can make these owners more interested in trying to help you in your business.

      At business networking meetings learn to ask questions and listen.


      # 6: Speak at as many business group events as you can.

      Being the speaker for a business networking group gives you great posture. You're immediately seen as an expert and business owners will usually come up and talk to you after you've spoken.


      # 7: Use direct mail. At OfflineBiz.com members use the Amazing 4 Line Letter which gets around 20%+ of business owners calling you.

      Direct mail used effectively can get a lot of business owners contacting you which also gives you great posture.


      # 8: Use email.

      Dropping an email to a business owner that gets his curiosity up or opens ANY kind of communication can work.

      Your response rate is likely to be lower but then it's very easy to send an email.


      # 9: Use your phone.

      All this carry on about "I don't want to cold call" etc etc etc.

      For God's sake get over yourself. Business owners call other business owners all the time when they have something valuable to share.

      Just remember these words: "I have my own business..."

      They work like magic when you want to talk to a business owner.

      Stop being a whimp and pick up the phone.

      One secret...you can call some business owners after hours and leave a message that forces them to call you back out of curiosity.

      Also if you've opened communication through email or direct mail the sooner that conversation moves to a higher level (phone conversation or face to face) the higher your chances of getting hired.

      If someone emails me back and I have their phone number I'm calling them on the phone immediately.

      That will convert a huge number of prospects into paying clients.

      It's also not cold calling (if you're still want to be whimpy about that.) Someone who's already contacted you has expressed their interest.


      # 10: Walk into businesses and talk to the owner.

      If you walk through areas that have businesses you can simply smile and say hi to every business owner you see.

      You don't have to try to talk to them.

      If you walk on the same route repeatedly those business owners will feel like they know you after you've smiled and said hi half a dozen times.

      Then you can stop and talk to them anytime you want and start asking questions.

      Last time I checked there's nothing scary about smiling and saying hi to people.


      # 11: Learn to ask questions and listen.

      If you're talking to business owners and trying to tell them about social networking, SEO, or any other service YOU WANT TO SELL then you deserve to crash and burn.

      Stop thinking about yourself and get interested in them and THEIR business.

      Ask questions and listen.

      Gather information.

      Then when you've built some rapport and trust you can use that information to create customized suggestions.

      When the business owner gets excited about one of your suggestions you can establish the value of that idea to the owner, ask for 50% in advance to get started and run with it.

      That's the easiest ways I know to get hired.

      One final tip:


      # 12: Stop talking about what you WON'T do.

      In many cases the thing you have so much resistance to doing may be the EASIEST way for you to get paying clients.

      You're creating mental barriers in your mind...making that task seem a whole lot harder than it really is.

      "I won't walk into businesses and talk to business owners" for example.

      What do you have against walking past, smiling and saying hi to business owners you see?

      That's not scary. And then talking to them after you've said hi half a dozen times and they feel like they know you.

      In some cases they'll start a conversation with you when their business is quiet.

      Also not scary.

      But if you keep telling yourself over and over you won't do something you're making it seem scary.


      It's the same with calling a business owner of the phone.

      You call your friends all the time on the phone.

      Stop making mental barriers for yourself by saying you won't do something.

      Think of the business owner you want to call as a friend and just do it.

      Sometimes things might not go as well as you'd like but who cares?

      If they do go well you get some money and the business owner gets a service that makes him some real money.

      Everybody wins.

      I would give you one suggestion that will change your outlook on life and business forever.

      Today DO the thing you're most afraid of doing.

      Don't think about it or analyze it just do it.

      Even if you take action almost certain you're going to fail it's better than not taking any action at all because you'll get some real live feedback and you'll see that the things you fear really aren't such a big deal.

      There's an old saying:

      "It's hard to steer a car that's not moving."

      All the information in the world is not going to help you get hired if you're not taking any action.

      We can't help you adjust what you're doing to be more effective if you're doing nothing.

      There's a big long list here of things you can do.

      If you want to get hired and make some money it's up to you to take some action NOW.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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      • Profile picture of the author McBrett
        @AndrewCavanagh Wow. You even got me inspired with that one. Kick Ass!
        Signature
        www.500aMonth.com - This is my blog.
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      • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
        Originally Posted by AndrewCavanagh View Post

        If you're serious about making money you need to stop trying to gather more information and start taking action immediately...........

        Kindest regards,
        Andrew Cavanagh

        Wow! Mr Offline Gold himself! Thank you so much for that post. I really this forum, and it's really cool that you took time to read, and comment on this thread. I loved the Offline Gold thread (that disappeared) and the report, etc. Do you offer any mentoring for this stuff? I guess I need to get into a different mind-frame and just shut up and do what's necessary.

        Thanks again Andrew
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  • Profile picture of the author RentItNow
    One thing I have learned is to make businesses chase me. If you MUST cold call or cold show up couple tips:

    1) Buy something from them at a none-busy time and strike up conversation. Then leave it.
    2) Come back again and mention marketing.
    3) Send them to a website that explains it more.
    4) Come back again and have a limit on a special you are running on a simple service.
    5) Sell the $100 service to them and then give them the works for a monthly fee.

    Now, I must say this is only creating opportunistic customers as you are in a bad negotiating position at the time.

    I am trying something very new and will only deal with the biggest firms in the city now that have high-value customers. The amount of time I am going to spend to make $100 is the same to make $1000 or even $10,000 and NO ONE ELSE IN MY CITY IS DOING IT! Big advantage.

    Once I realized this advantage I put a hell of a lot more value in my services.

    Good luck!

    PS: Only deal with markets that are presold on Internet Marketings advantages
    Signature
    I have no agenda but to help those in the same situation. This I feel will pay the bills.
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
    If I could ask.......

    What is the best type of business to approach for offline/online services? More specifically, have you noticed better take rate with small auto dealerships, nail and hair salons, pizza joints, etc.????

    I'm going to approach 5 businesses today and call 5 more (just to start). I heard somewhere it takes 10 "No's" to get one "Yes". I can do this each day, but it would be nice to hear if you've had better results with a certain type of business.


    Also, what fee's do you charge for services? Here's what I'm going to be offering:

    1. Social Media Marketing (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn only)
    2. SEO On-page & off (by me at first, then outsourced)
    3. Video & Content Creation - (TubeMogul submission)
    4. Submission to Google, Yahoo, Bing local, Yellow Pages.com, etc.
    5. New Web sites (Wordpress, by me at first, then outsourced)
    6. PPC
    7. Business Blogs
    8. Email Autoresponder Campaigns
    9. Competition Analysis
    10. Misc. other little services on request


    Thanks in advance!
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    • Profile picture of the author Kelly Verge
      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      If I could ask.......

      What is the best type of business to approach for offline/online services? More specifically, have you noticed better take rate with small auto dealerships, nail and hair salons, pizza joints, etc.????

      Those who are already paying a lot for advertising (billboards, radio/tv spots, newspaper ads, yellow pages).
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    • Profile picture of the author RentItNow
      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      What is the best type of business to approach for offline/online services? More specifically, have you noticed better take rate with small auto dealerships, nail and hair salons, pizza joints, etc.????...

      Also, what fee's do you charge for services? Here's what I'm going to be offering:...
      Only businesses with high value customers (doctors, lawyers, new car dealerships, manufacturers, contractors). Any business will want your services but only those are likely to most benefit from it and more importantly PAY YOU! The idea is each customer is MUCH more valuable to a contractor than a guy that owns a pizza place.

      Believe me, everyone will be interested in what you are offering, but the hardest part is making money doing it.

      Ok, on the fees part...

      I have used MANY price models in businesses before but the best one to me is to have a package ready for a set price. Any deviation from that package can be adjusted for with either a 'menu' of prices or per hour or the big money maker, per month with a minimum of months.

      For example

      Silver Package: Ad design, Squeeze Page, Thank You Page, Autoresponder setup and 12 months of emails, $1,500. $250/MN FOR 12 MONTHS to maintain webspace/aweber/etc.

      Gold Package: blah blah....

      Little piece of advice, if they ask you, "How much would you charge me to do XYZ"...answer them RIGHT AWAY or tell them, well in my experience my GOLD package would cover that for exactly $2000 and $100/mn". In other words, don't say, "well let me think about that and calculate that and get back to you" If you give them a fair package offer, they will take it and it saves having to "prepare a proposal" (the guys way of brushing you off).

      This is why you hopefully chose a client that is going to pay you for the valuable customers you are bringing them. For instance, do you think a guy with a pizza place that you sent two customers worth $50 is going to pay you $2000 easier than a dentist that makes $4,000 for that same amount of customers?
      Signature
      I have no agenda but to help those in the same situation. This I feel will pay the bills.
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    • Profile picture of the author Maria Gudelis
      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      If I could ask.......

      What is the best type of business to approach for offline/online services? More specifically, have you noticed better take rate with small auto dealerships, nail and hair salons, pizza joints, etc.????

      I'm going to approach 5 businesses today and call 5 more (just to start). I heard somewhere it takes 10 "No's" to get one "Yes". I can do this each day, but it would be nice to hear if you've had better results with a certain type of business.


      Also, what fee's do you charge for services? Here's what I'm going to be offering:

      1. Social Media Marketing (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn only)
      2. SEO On-page & off (by me at first, then outsourced)
      3. Video & Content Creation - (TubeMogul submission)
      4. Submission to Google, Yahoo, Bing local, Yellow Pages.com, etc.
      5. New Web sites (Wordpress, by me at first, then outsourced)
      6. PPC
      7. Business Blogs
      8. Email Autoresponder Campaigns
      9. Competition Analysis
      10. Misc. other little services on request


      Thanks in advance!
      Tim - you've got great pearls of money making action items from everyone posting here in this thread - Andrew Cavanagh's post sums it up

      Take action - test - tweak - take action - get confidence - go JUST DO IT!

      in reference to your question about fees for services
      -

      check out my sig link below for free cool stuff on that including my own packages my consulting company sells.

      what type of businesses - some things to think about

      1. - go after ones with high customer lifetime value (e.g. a plastic surgeon who gets one new customer that is worth $10k plus...has the marketing budget to pay YOU four figures per month to get new customers...''

      some restaurants believe it or not - have high CLV!

      2. ONes with a marketing budget already established -

      e.g - call / email / direct mail to companies already using PPC campaigns - heck -they have already RAISED their hand to say I want to be on first page of googe

      3. Try to understand the 'pain ' of one particular niche and capitalize on it - solving that pain and understanding how to talk to the prospect about the pain....so for instance - alot of professionals (dentists, optometrists, chiripractors) are starting to see a 'pain' of 'what is being said about them on the social mediasphere....

      yes - I pay researchers to find that out - eg - do you know a hot topic at dentists' conferences right now...- 'what is being said about them online"

      ...ding ding - reputation management, social media services to that niche - HOT

      You know what I mean - talk to your prospects not as a salesperson - as a consultant, developing a relationship with him/her, finding more about their industry to then understand how you can help them better.

      4. Get other clients in that niche - go to other cities etc. get referrals from your clients for that niche

      5. other important stuff on what customer to go after -

      get a pad of paper out - write down right now your background experience - where / what industry have you worked in and understand.

      reach out to that niche you have a background in.

      E.g. I have a background in real estate and venture capital - talking to those prospects is easier for me than talking say to a niche I"m not as familiar - say dry cleaning
      \
      make sense?

      Next - and important - some may disagree - it's not about money money money honey...also ...

      write down what niche your 'dig' or are passionate about that you would enjoy consulting to. This can give you long term rewards beyond money!

      That's some pieces of action items to add to this great thread....

      ONe other point, if you are wanting to outsource the cold calling....

      do what the best 'sales floors' and 'big boys' do...

      The Two Step (note this is great also to do with 'warm leads' you perhaps got from a Chamber presentation, an educational webinar etc.)

      You have one person (you can hire via odesk, craigslist advert. etc.) be an 'appointment setter for you'

      YOu then take that appointment with the prospect (or perhaps you hire a 100% commissioned sales rep you also found via CL or other means)

      Note - it is rare to outsource both steps to one person - you typically find one type of person GREAT at chit chatting, starting the relationship...

      and another type of person GREAT at closing.

      Good luck and you've made the right choice -owning your own consulting biz is da bomb!

      HOpe that helps! Cheers, Maria

      ps - I'll pm you a link to a free audio I had with JJ Childers where we discussed how to set yourself up as a consultant...

      my recommendation is to first boot strap it with little expenditure possible, reinvest profits into your biz
      Signature

      Brand NEW: How To Dominate Facebook SEO - LIVE Coaching - Closes SOON! Get In Now Click Here


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  • Profile picture of the author mikemac1
    Great Thread!

    Just to add, one thing that always helps offline biz owners is to see something that is already producing results.

    Other WF members, such as GoGetta, have released some really good WSOs about creating an online product, getting results and then renting or selling this product to a business (don't want to give away too much of their WSOs).

    It shows that you have something that is working, gives you confidence on your sales calls and is something that you can replicate with other biz categories.

    Good luck and can't wait to hear how your day went.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
      Originally Posted by michael-mac View Post

      Great Thread!

      Other WF members, such as GoGetta, have released some really good WSOs about creating an online product, getting results and then renting or selling this product to a business (don't want to give away too much of their WSOs).

      Good luck and can't wait to hear how your day went.
      I'm actually going to try this as well. I have a website (more like a webage) in the Dental niche that is ranking quite nicely, AND I also got a Google Favorite Places award for it! Im not sure how or why they gave me that seeing as how there is no physical building, nut I got one and im going to use it to my advantage.

      I thought either creating a separate webpage for each city surrounding Phoenix, and renting the page out to ONE dentist in that city for a monthly fee....or....renting the entire webpage out to one dentist for more money. Im sure it would be easier to convince dentist into advertising as opposed to 10 or 12 in different cities....

      Thanks for the kind words! I will post tonight or tomorrow how my day went. Off to shower and get dressed...oh yea, and TAKE ACTION
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  • Profile picture of the author ASM Marketing
    Tim,

    My strong advice to you is steer clear of one-off payments. By nature, we are marketeers and most of the strategies we employ take time and often their fair share of communication tennis (emailing, waiting for response, etc).

    Promote acquiring clients on a monthly contract, and explain that the fee covers any communication and ad-hoc tasks you may encounter whilst trying to achieve results for them. They should understand and if they don't, they're probably not the type of client you want anyway.

    I moved away from one-off's a long time ago, and now I know exactly what my base revenue is each and every month without having to worry about winning new work just to keep afloat.

    Regards,
    Alex
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by ASM Marketing View Post

      Tim,

      My strong advice to you is steer clear of one-off payments. By nature, we are marketeers and most of the strategies we employ take time and often their fair share of communication tennis (emailing, waiting for response, etc).

      Promote acquiring clients on a monthly contract, and explain that the fee covers any communication and ad-hoc tasks you may encounter whilst trying to achieve results for them. They should understand and if they don't, they're probably not the type of client you want anyway.

      I moved away from one-off's a long time ago, and now I know exactly what my base revenue is each and every month without having to worry about winning new work just to keep afloat.

      Regards,
      Alex


      It's good advice but I'd word it a little differently.

      When you're starting out you don't want to steer clear of any kind of payment (obviously lol).

      Any experience where you're getting paid by a client is valuable to you for developing your skills.

      One other thing you should keep in mind.

      Small ongoing payments (like $20-$50 a month) sound appealing but often they open you up for doing a whole lot of work that really isn't worth the effort.

      You'd be better off charging $250 to $600 a year.

      When you're thinking about charging ongoing payments you want to make it worth your while.

      Most people starting out in this niche simply don't charge enough which is fine with your first few clients but beyond that don't be afraid to charge...your clients will respect your time more and you'll make more money.

      The guy who's charging $50 a month gets treated like a lackey.

      The guy who's charging $500 to $1,500+ a month gets treated like an expert consultant.

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Profile picture of the author Tim Brendel
    So as promised, I'm reporting in and I actually have good news! I went to my chiropractor today to get adjusted and sparked up conversation about their website and marketing. Needless to say I wowed my doctor and she scheduled to have me come back tomorrow morning at 9:30 to talk some more!!!

    Now, onto my promise. I called 5 businesses and walked into 3 (not 5) yesterday. The calls were all a NO, ad the walk-ins were as well, BUT I realized that I need work on my phone script (actually, I don't even have one). I was stuttering and panicky, and it didn't go well but it was my fault.

    The walk-ins were similar. I'm not a good salesman - Im technical. I can do the work I advertise but i can't sell it. I just need practice I guess.

    Tomorrow is a new day and I plan on visiting another business or 2, and possibly calling a few more if I can find a good phone script tonight.

    I can't thank you guys enough for all of the support, tips, tricks, and advice that I got from this thread, AND the WF itself. I'm determined to make it, so therefore I will


    -Tim
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    • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      Do you offer any mentoring for this stuff? I guess I need to get into a different mind-frame and just shut up and do what's necessary.

      Thanks again Andrew
      Yes we do that for gold members at offlinebiz.com



      Originally Posted by Tim Brendel View Post

      If I could ask.......

      What is the best type of business to approach for offline/online services? More specifically, have you noticed better take rate with small auto dealerships, nail and hair salons, pizza joints, etc.????

      I'm going to approach 5 businesses today and call 5 more (just to start). I heard somewhere it takes 10 "No's" to get one "Yes". I can do this each day, but it would be nice to hear if you've had better results with a certain type of business.


      Also, what fee's do you charge for services? Here's what I'm going to be offering:

      1. Social Media Marketing (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn only)
      2. SEO On-page & off (by me at first, then outsourced)
      3. Video & Content Creation - (TubeMogul submission)
      4. Submission to Google, Yahoo, Bing local, Yellow Pages.com, etc.
      5. New Web sites (Wordpress, by me at first, then outsourced)
      6. PPC
      7. Business Blogs
      8. Email Autoresponder Campaigns
      9. Competition Analysis
      10. Misc. other little services on request


      Thanks in advance!


      Great to see you're taking action.

      If you focus on being low key and just asking questions you should end up converting a lot more than one in ten business owners you talk to into clients.

      Also remember that the business owners who don't hire you can be a great source of referrals.



      The fees you charge will be different for each project you do and based around a combination of:

      # How much you're happy to do the work for (you charge at least twice that as an upfront fee).

      # How much the service is worth to the business in terms of potential sales and profits (working with the business owner to establish an estimated value is crucial).

      # What the business owner is used to paying for other products and services (if you're inside his payment comfort zone then it's much easier to get him to pay you that upfront fee when you're first starting).

      Kindest regards,
      Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Profile picture of the author mtnbiz
    I opened the yellow pages and wrote down every industry that had full page ads. These guys have money to advertise. Now all I need to do is pick up the phone.
    Signature
    http://www.First-Page-Domination.com
    Helping "Brick and Mortar" businesses market on the "click and order" world of the Internet.
    Have a list of "Real World" business owners? I am always looking for JVs
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  • Profile picture of the author freudianslip27
    I also can't tell you how important it is to make sure your leads are "qualified", in other words they have the ability and willingness to pay $$$ for this stuff

    1) When I first started I targeted some businesses that were downright silly to be targeting. They met with me but realistically it didn't make sense for them to be able to pay XXX/month for internet advertising.

    If you find businesses by looking for those that are PAYING for advertising, you know they already have that mindset.

    2) Make sure these businesses will appreciate you

    When I first started my back was to the wall and I took some clients that in hindsight, I should not have. I bent over backwards for them and had to show them every step of the way how I was helping.

    Others understand the importance of internet marketing, and are happy to pay lots of $$$ for the pleasure. If a client is too "on the fence" don't go lower than you can afford just to get the money, you'll regret it later!

    Matt
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