New client does NOT want to make money ....

31 replies
I got a referral call in last week, the guy is a forensic researcher.

I had no idea what that really means, so i did some research, and
i don't really know too much more about it.

So in a nutshell, this guy has about a dozen people that work for him,
and they are shooting a series for it, to start showing next year.

He wants to set up a website, generate a ton of traffic.
slap banners up every where, brand the heck out of it.

And he want to do all of it before the show airs.

But he doesn't want to sell anything.

I cannot see this going too well, you can only throw so much money at
something, without seeing a return, before you have to shut it down.

The more i talk to him the more it sounds like a passion project
with no real objective.

But he is prepared to spend gobs of money.

It literally took me 2 hours to convince him to at least
set up a newsletter, with auto responders.

I'm not really comfortable with setting this up without monetizing it.
paraphernalia, phone apps, sales, ect.

but he is dead set against it.

Has anyone dealt with a passion project before?

What did you do? Did you take the money and run?
Did you manage to convince them to make money with it? if so how?

Any thoughts are appreciated.
#client #make #money
  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    He is the customer.

    Give him what he wants, or tell him to find someone else.
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  • Profile picture of the author George Wright
    I've had several customers who did not want to make any "MORE" money.

    From mechanics to beauty shops, all they wanted is help to manage their businesses.

    They wanted to give their current customers information about their businesses, I.E. hours of operation, prices, services, etc.

    I gave them what they wanted.

    That is why I get amused when some here insist that if you don't "make more money" for your clients you are not doing your job as a webmaster.

    Give them what they ask for, provide great customer service and CHARGE.

    George Wright
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  • Profile picture of the author Iriss
    It doesn't matter and it's not your concern.

    You only know this because you are an Internet Marketer. You are aware of this. He isn't.

    You will not talk people who are like that out of what they believe is the best thing to do. Even if your suggestion is superior. Make sure he pays you 50% forward, finish the site, take the last 50% and move on to your next client.
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  • Profile picture of the author AlphaRosa
    Sounds like he just wants promotion and marketing. You don't have to make a sale or push sales when you are in promotion mode. Unless he is hiring you to be his business coach/mentor, just provide him the web services he is asking for.
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  • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
    Are you kidding me? This is the ideal client you want... one that doesn't care to sell or have any kind of measure of what is success and what isn't lol. So easy...People like this typically just want what they want and don't want much input on it. Passion projects usually have a lot of money behind them.

    I have had a few like this and they're absolutely wonderful.

    If they are hiring you as a business consultant, then lay out your plans and analysis. It isn't YOUR business, and isn't your decision. Just go with the flow, he wants you to do what he wants, if you don't like that I'll take em

    The main thing is finding out what your client needs. It isn't your perception of what they need... there is nothing hidden or secret about it, it is usually straight forward and they tell you what they need. There are many things I would want to do and money would not be the focus. Maybe he has enough money and doesn't care.

    Some things and projects are worth more than a monetary amount. Some have more meaning and are close to the heart, that is the real value behind it in their eyes.
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    • Profile picture of the author FredJones
      Go ahead. Help him.

      I know what a forensic researcher is but I am sure you have already read through in the Internet more than what I can write in a post, and honestly the fact that he is a forensic researcher does not matter for you.

      Simply go and do his job. His source of income is elsewhere (the way that he sees it) so let him be happy with his sources of income. Once he does it and comes out of his frenzy, he may listen to you then if you do a good job now.

      For now, go, do the "lesser challenging job" and earn your money.
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Chicas
    I would tell you the same thing. Why? Some projects are more of building an audience, trust and long term goals instead of hawking some generic product right off the bat.

    Don't get me wrong, there is a time and place for everything, but not every website needs a commission based product.

    Some of my websites I would never even put adsense/PPC on them because it would lessen the integrity of the site. And from my point of view, trying to be sneaky with an audience doesn't work anymore. The same goes for trying to be "sales-sy"

    Anyway, everyones way of doing things are different. That's just mine.
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  • Profile picture of the author princecapri
    See, thing is - not every part of a project is supposed to make money. Some of them are for promotional purposes only. Ask yourself, has HR ever directly produced money for a company?

    Nope, it hasn't!

    So maybe this project of his is for administration only. Putting affiliate links everywhere might muddy what might be his social efforts.
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  • Profile picture of the author dsouravs
    Dont think everybody as IMer.
    He is a researcher....He has passion for his job and he wants future gen. to come to it...He earns a lot of money....so he dont want to earn money from IM (nor he needs money from IM)....Nor he has the time to sit and study this IM ****....Yes we human beings love our job and think others job as ****...

    Give him what he wants...But yes...yes yes yes I respect Ur consultaton, guidance and honesty with the client.
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    • Profile picture of the author princecapri
      Originally Posted by dsouravs View Post

      Dont think everybody as IMer.
      He is a researcher....He has passion for his job and he wants future gen. to come to it...He earns a lot of money....so he dont want to earn money from IM (nor he needs money from IM)....Nor he has the time to sit and study this IM ****....Yes we human beings love our job and think others job as ****...

      Give him what he wants...But yes...yes yes yes I respect Ur consultaton, guidance and honesty with the client.
      Actually, researchers earn crap! They are not highly paid, unless they make something revolutionary, in which case someone else (a marketeer) piggybacks them to the bank. I know 'cos I am both
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      • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
        Originally Posted by princecapri View Post

        Actually, researchers earn crap! They are not highly paid, unless they make something revolutionary, in which case someone else (a marketeer) piggybacks them to the bank. I know 'cos I am both
        You didn't read closely enough... this guy isn't just a
        researcher... he's a forensic researcher... Big Difference.

        If he's not earning big bucks I'd be shocked.
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        If you knew what I know you'd be doing what I do...
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        • Profile picture of the author Joseph G Spiteri
          I don't see where the problem is if you have explained all the things
          he needs to do to monetise the site and he still wants to go ahead
          with his model then that is his choice.
          Do what he wants and get paid for it.
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  • Profile picture of the author BIG Mike
    Banned
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    • Profile picture of the author Fernando Veloso
      Originally Posted by BIG Mike View Post

      Marketing isn't always about turning a quick buck...
      Amen to that Mike.

      People are so freaking obsessed with IM, sales, sites, AR, autothis, autothat, rankings, serp's... they forget "marketing" is the keyword.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andrew S
    he's preselling his audience and building anticipation for his upcoming project

    that is selling
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  • Profile picture of the author pandadoodle
    Do you even know what marketing is?

    He is selling his show not some crummy PPC Ad where he gets 2% if someone buys a product related tool.

    My advice to you is to pass the job onto someone who has a few more eggs in their basket
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  • Profile picture of the author jbearnolimits
    I think this sums it up from a quote I read somewhere:

    "The customer doesn't have to understand. The customer is the customer."
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    • Profile picture of the author rosetrees
      Originally Posted by jbearnolimits View Post

      I think this sums it up from a quote I read somewhere:

      "The customer doesn't have to understand. The customer is the customer."
      It helps, though, if the web designer understands. I always start by talking to my customers and finding out what THEY want from their website. Do they want to sell directly from it (believe it or not, most don't)? Do they want it to showcase their services? Do they want to build a list of contacts (again, believe it or not, most don't). What DO they want?

      I have one customers who sells a physical product who doesn't even want their website to be FOUND apart from the people to whom they give the web address. Seems daft to me, but I rarely argue with a client unless I know them very well! I even have one client who paid me good money for (what I think) is one of my best websites - and he's never even let me make it live as he can't get his head round the idea of letting go of the totally c*** website he already has!!!

      If your customer is going to be featured in a tv series he most probably wants a site that will showcase his services and give his contact details. That is actually what most offline customers want.
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  • Profile picture of the author dipsx129
    You need to look at this as a branding excercise!

    Remember big companies throw away millions every year on marketing that is for PR and awareness. He has a show that will be aired and what he wants to do is create awareness around it before it air's.

    Whilst he may not want direct sales from the traffic you drive to his site, what he wants is engagement. So look at what his site should have to create engagement and get visitors interested in his upcoming show.

    I can reiterate more that this is all about branding and awareness, awareness, awareness. The conversion is engagement and whilst it is not a direct sale their is a end goal.

    What is the end goal?
    The end goal is to build engaged visitors that become fans and are looking forward to the show to air. I put down every engaged or returning visitor as a conversion.

    The more people that are engaged by the time his show starts the more likely his show will succeed which will lead him to maybe get more slots on TV and really build his reputation to another level. It could make him a celebrity forensic researcher that is paid big money just to speak at high profile events as well as more TV time as the TV networks role with whatever gets the viewers.

    I hope this helps. Message me if you need any help.

    Thanks
    Dips
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  • Profile picture of the author Webpromotion
    He is monetizing it... just on a larger scale.

    He wants the "branding", his series could make him millions.
    but not if no one see it.

    Give him what he wants.

    PM me if you need resources to handle this project.
    It kind of seems that it might be over your league.
    No disrespect intended, of course.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rus Sells
    He needs viewers plain and simple. A show will die or survive on the ratings and number of viewers, this is what he's trying to accomplish with the marketing efforts he's employing to you to do.
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    • Profile picture of the author nik0
      Banned
      I would have ditched you immidiatly cause I would get extremely annoyed by your pushing sales thing.
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      • Profile picture of the author ArthelJoyVallon
        Your client's decision may seem like an absolute waste of earning opportunity to you, but remember- he is your client. Client satisfaction is always the utmost priority of anybody who's into business. You don't have to get too worked up about it, you know you have done your part in presenting him with options. If he still insists,then do what you are paid to do, give him what he wants (you never know, it may be just a part of a bigger picture your client has in mind). It's still a win-win situation - the customer is satisfied, and you get paid for what you are hired for.
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Burton
    Originally Posted by kenmichaels View Post

    I got a referral call in last week, the guy is a forensic researcher.

    I had no idea what that really means, so i did some research, and
    i don't really know too much more about it.

    So in a nutshell, this guy has about a dozen people that work for him,
    and they are shooting a series for it, to start showing next year.

    He wants to set up a website, generate a ton of traffic.
    slap banners up every where, brand the heck out of it.

    And he want to do all of it before the show airs.

    But he doesn't want to sell anything.
    Look at it this way. He *is* selling something... The purpose of the site is to sell the airing of the program. To get it in front of an audience.

    Not knowing the details I can't speak to specifics, but as others have suggested, if that's what he wants, he's going to find someone who will give it to him. It can be you, or the next guy, or the one after that (etc).

    It's a bit like the websites that are built to promote quitting smoking for health's sake. Some of them aren't SELLING anything (well, they are selling the principle you'll be healthier without cigarettes) but they aren't trying to make money.

    But in this case, the money for this may be coming out of a grant, or the airing that it is promoting may be a preliminary which is expected to then lead to being picked up elsewhere (or expanded upon) generating a future revenue source.

    But the bottom line is, as long as you are absolutely clear with the customer they want to spend money on this, and what it's going to cost them, and they are certain they don't want to build any method of selling something else, or otherwise making money. It's their option to NOT make money.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Keith
    He is selling his "Brand".

    lots of people do advertising for the purpose of exposure / branding. In fact, until google and the adwords thing came along, a huge percentage of all advertising money was spent on branding style advertising rather than direct response type of campaigns.
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  • Profile picture of the author marketingva
    I've noticed that many famous and successful reality shows have a huge web presence that gains them fans and allows fans to interact. I would think a producer/director for a series would insist that your client build a web presence without selling at first. It builds loyalty. Later down the line he will sell DVDs of past seasons, t-shirts, mugs, etc. By then you will have helped him build his brand and his viewership and things will progress naturally.

    Good luck!

    Bonnie
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  • Profile picture of the author pamon
    he's looking for marketing vs income and building that marketing will help his exposure. grab the money and say thanks. guy like that can help build more clients, especially if he's known well in that industry. lots of $$ there
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  • Profile picture of the author R Hagel
    This:

    this guy has about a dozen people that work for him,
    and they are shooting a series for it
    And this:

    But he is prepared to spend gobs of money.

    And then this:

    Originally Posted by kenmichaels View Post

    New client does NOT want to make money ....
    No, it sounds to me like the new client already KNOWS how to make a lot of money. Maybe his outlook is just a bit more broad.

    Seems like he's got more money to burn than a lot of people here probably even make. Maybe he knows what he's doing.


    Becky
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  • Profile picture of the author cashp0wer
    Just think about, if you do as he wants and you do a great job he then might want to do another passion project and you will be the first place he tries. Repeat income you just can not beat. But if you keep pushing for things he does not want at the moment he probably will not come back.
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    • Profile picture of the author Black Hat Cat
      Banned
      This cannot be a serious thread. Not sure I've ever seen such a silly......sheesh, it's so silly, there just are no words for how silly.

      OP, I hope you took a pass. You're not really qualified for the job you're pretending to do.
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      • Profile picture of the author DGFletcher
        You said he's doing a series? As in a TV show?

        Online, here's generally how money works: (insert small amount of money or start out free, get a bit more back, insert a bit more money, get more back, repeat process until you're making as much money as you want)

        For videos and TV shows, here's generally how money works: (invest a bunch of money in the show. Invest in the set, the actors, the cameras, the marketing (which is what you're doing) etc etc etc. Then the how comes out. That's when you make your money back if the show works.)

        Given that I'm not sure how professional this guy is, he *really* needs help with his marketing, getting the word out that this series exists and making it at least a cult classic.

        It'll be a bit weird, but doable. If you don't want that client, I'll take him. I've worked with film/marketing and probably would be able to help him get where he wants to go.

        On the other hand, if you mean something other than a TV show... ignore this post.
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  • Profile picture of the author Troy_Phillips
    I can't believe they are still your client.

    You ask if they wanted to monetize and they said no. Should have left it that.

    Do you not realize the branding of the series is what is important to them? Try to get past the $7 ebook mentality and understand that trying to sell on this site could easily turn off a percentage of readers. In this persons opinion (the only opinion that counts is the one who holds the credit card) any person they turn off to the website is someone they turn off to the series.

    Same situation with a lot of clients I build and manage email list for. Except the opposite is at play. They want to monetize way too soon.

    I feel it my duty to explain my view one time but ... they hold the credit card and if they want it .. they get it.
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