Client's Business is Booming - Here's What I Did

29 replies
I thought I would post here as an example of what most any of us can do for a local business owner if they simply give us offline marketers a chance and let us help them.

If you are new to offline and don't have one client yet, don't despair, they are out there and they need our help so keep at it.

Here's the story....

I had lunch with the sales manager of a restaurant client of mine today, who just about 1 year ago came on board after I demoed an SMS system (using Twilio) for him and the owner. (I originally sent a letter to them about SMS and the owner called me back about 2 weeks later)

The manager told me business is booming, off the charts, and much higher than they ever imagined. ( I personally witnessed this last Friday when I went there to get take out and I couldn't even find a parking spot!) The Chinese place next door was half full, and my client's place was packed.

Now this place does have great food, but I know that the things I have done for them have made a big difference in their overall marketing, and overall internet presence and as a result has helped sales big time.

Below is a list of the things I have done for them over the last year. (There are a bunch of people in this forum whose WSOs have helped me learn some of this stuff, and a special thanks goes to Chad Wyatt for introducing me to Twilio in April of last year, and subsequently OpenVBX.)

1) I got them set up with an SMS system and helped them begin getting subscribers. They haven't really pushed this as much as they could have over the last year, but have still managed to put together a list of a little over 750 subscribers. The sales manager sends out messages about once every 3 weeks. He "gets it" so about 3 months in I set him up so he could send the messages from his cell phone to the list. Works like a charm.

2) Last fall I took over their website because they were basically getting hosed from the guys that were doing it previously. I converted their existing ASP site to a wordpress site (a guy on Fiverr did a terrific job on that) so I could incorporate some good plugins. When I did this, I included a php mobile site (thanks Kevin Kooch!) with a redirect as well. (G analytics shows they get 30% of visitors to the mobile site very consistently.)

3) I added a reviews page (thanks again to Chad Wyatt again for his terrific plugin!) and also added their facebook fan page onto their site (Thanks Zesh Ali for your WSO on that!)

4) They really wanted to increase their dine-in business, so I originally suggested an email birthday club. The manager at first said he wasn't into that, then later on when someone inquired about it on their Facebook page, he asked if I could incorporate that too. So I did. (Another helpful WSO using Aweber for this - Thanks Peter Beattie!

5) I added the opt in form to the website and also I ran some ads on Facebook targeting people in my town for the birthday club. The response has been terrific, and after only a couple months that list is close to 300 subscribers - so every month people are coming in now to redeem their birthday coupons - dine-in only of course! cha ching!

The manager would now like to have some sort of coupon for first time visitors to come back within a certain amount of time, so I suggested a mobile "redeemable" coupon and he was very interested in that. So I'll be incorporating that very soon as well, probably with a QR code or something.

I think the key is to start with ONE thing.

Had I gone in guns blazing and told them all of these things they could do at one time, they probably would have kicked me out of the place. I started with SMS, but I could have started with the email birthday club too, or maybe even the Facebook page on their site.

So choose ONE thing and show them how it can help increase their business. When that works, suggest another, and another, etc. We know this stuff inside out, but most business owners do not.

This was my longest post ever I think, but hopefully it will provide a good case study for you of the possibilities!
#booming #busines #client
  • Profile picture of the author businessnewbie
    Thanks for sharing this, sounds like a great formula for making things stick. Keep up the good work and keep sharing it with us newbies
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  • Profile picture of the author wilder1047
    This is awesome man.

    This is the sort of stuff I'm interested in seeing now, exactly HOW to incorporate a marketing plan that kills it for a client in a particular industry.

    I've currently got something in the works for a furniture store that is converting half decently, if the furniture store can take advantage of it, I'll share the method here, once we have a thread full of tried and true methods we'll be more powerful then any yellow pages 360, or intuit or whatever the hell us the big corps can throw at us!!

    Thanks,

    James
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  • Profile picture of the author IMHunter
    Thanks for sharing this great information. You are doing great. I also have some offline clients.
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  • Profile picture of the author Bryan V
    Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

    Had I gone in guns blazing and told them all of these things they could do at one time, they probably would have kicked me out of the place.
    Lol, coming in guns blazing. Can't stop laughing picturing that happening. True though.

    Anyways good share! What are you doing to help grow their SMS subscriber list?

    Are you doing anything other than straight up asking people if they're first timers, to hand out coupons to them?
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    • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
      Originally Posted by Bryan V View Post

      Lol, coming in guns blazing. Can't stop laughing picturing that happening. True though.

      Anyways good share! What are you doing to help grow their SMS subscriber list?

      Are you doing anything other than straight up asking people if they're first timers, to hand out coupons to them?
      Their SMS list could be double what it is now but the staff just doesn't push it at all, and the manager isn't there all the time and he knows they don't push it. There are a couple of tiny flyers posted at the front and that's about it. I do mention it in the autoresponse for the birthday club, and there is a page for it on the mobile site, so that is probably where most of the subscribers come from now. At a certain point though its bound to slow down I guess. They have not done much promotion at all and a list of 750 is pretty good for a neighborhood place.

      The email Birthday club is up to about 250 though now, and from a revenue standpoint, that will probably bring in more dollars over time. I've suggested tracking total sales from the tables that use the birthday club coupon, but that fell on deaf ears. Too much work for them I guess. It would be nice to know just how much revenue one of those birthday coupons brings in total though. Then they could project for the year roughly how much the program is adding to the bottom line. X number coupons redeemed times $XXX average table revenue = $XXX

      I would definitely like to know because then I can go to another place and say "Listen, I helped your competitor bring in $XXX in more profit last year with one simple marketing method. Want me to do the same thing for you?"
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      • Profile picture of the author hockeycoachdoug
        xlfutur1- congrats on your success- I do have a question, not sure you will be willing to answer- you obviously have increased the guy's revenue substantially (do you actually know by how much?), so how much do you charge this guy for the services you are providing- is it monthly, one off, percentage of gain? Just curious- the guy should be paying you dearly and hoping you never decide to leave him.
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        • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
          Originally Posted by hockeycoachdoug View Post

          xlfutur1- congrats on your success- I do have a question, not sure you will be willing to answer- you obviously have increased the guy's revenue substantially (do you actually know by how much?), so how much do you charge this guy for the services you are providing- is it monthly, one off, percentage of gain? Just curious- the guy should be paying you dearly and hoping you never decide to leave him.
          I don't know exactly how much these programs have increased revenue, that's why I suggested tracking the revenue made from the birthday club coupons. I do OK with this client, but I don't charge them enough for the results they have gotten. This was one of my first offline clients so I wanted to make sure everything went well so I would have some credibility with future clients. I will probably be raising my prices soon though with these guys.
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          • Profile picture of the author bulerouk
            xlfutur1, thanks for this post. it really has hit home and clarified a few strategies for offline marketing using sms. thanks for sharing.
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      • Profile picture of the author sowens
        Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

        The email Birthday club is up to about 250 though now, and from a revenue standpoint, that will probably bring in more dollars over time. I've suggested tracking total sales from the tables that use the birthday club coupon, but that fell on deaf ears. Too much work for them I guess. It would be nice to know just how much revenue one of those birthday coupons brings in total though. Then they could project for the year roughly how much the program is adding to the bottom line. X number coupons redeemed times average table revenue =
        "
        They apparently own the mailing list so you will probably need the owners permission to do this:
        Survey the mailing list:
        1) have the survey form on your own website so any business owner can see you are the business providing the sms services
        2) in the survey, ask how many text subscribers ate there for the first time because of a text promotion
        3) ask how many new diners they brought with them when they cashed in their birthday dinner.
        4) if you think you can get away with it, ask them how much they spent and/or if they had anything from the bar, maybe a specialty drink.

        From now on, always include the right to survey the mailing list in your contract with the business.

        In my area, the average ticket is $9 at lunch and $14 at dinner. If a regular customer brings in a spouse/regular diner and 2 new customers for the price of one free dinner, I've just earned that restaurant $42 (minus the food and overhead for the one free birthday dinner) plus any drinks they may have purchased. If staff did their job, these new customers will return at least five times and bring in a minimum 2 additional new diners over 6 months.

        You should be able to calculate a minimum return on marketing effort with the information you already have on hand.

        Also, if the restaurant has a point of sale system with a scanner, you can embed a UPC-type bar code into the sms email and have the server scan it from the phone to apply the discount. That incorporates the discount into the POS and makes tracking the marketing effort as easy as falling out of bed.

        Thanks for the great thread -- Shelley Owens
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  • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
    I will actually be making a thread exactly like this later tonight. Except I'm using older & more traditional forms of marketing. People on here should know how hard its been for me working for these 2 business's (basement waterproofing and energy audits) as I've been complaining a ton in these last few months.

    But this week things finally changed for the better! Right around the time I was begining to suspect both businesses would be out of business by next month. Thats how bad things got. The owner had to forfeit his insurance, like $70,000 in debt, a lot of bad things started going on, and I'm just so happy we were able to pull ourselves out of this situation. Well were not out 100% yet but we have leads coming in again and thats all that matters as we're strong on sales just weak on our marketing.

    I will post a thread about it later but I love stories like this, especially when things go bad and you don't see a way out of it. Its an important experience for me too consider these are the first 2 companies I've been acting as a consultant for, so I had to learn a really tough lesson during an even tougher time.

    When business is NOT booming, and your weeks away from going out of business... that is not a time to start investing in more online advertising. Especially when the little bit of advertising you have online already isn't working. We wound up doing so many things and were so desperate, that online marketing ruined our focus and our overall strategy.

    Wound up being offline marketing that saved the day, and I'll be posting a thread about it later. Really is such a great feeling once all that hard work finally pays off. Moreso the relief you feel, like a breath of fresh air.

    -Red
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    • Profile picture of the author sowens
      Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

      I will actually be making a thread exactly like this later tonight. Except I'm using older & more traditional forms of marketing. People on here should know how hard its been for me working for these 2 business's (basement waterproofing and energy audits) as I've been complaining a ton in these last few months.

      But this week things finally changed for the better! Right around the time I was begining to suspect both businesses would be out of business by next month. Thats how bad things got. The owner had to forfeit his insurance, like $70,000 in debt, a lot of bad things started going on, and I'm just so happy we were able to pull ourselves out of this situation. Well were not out 100% yet but we have leads coming in again and thats all that matters as we're strong on sales just weak on our marketing.

      I will post a thread about it later but I love stories like this, especially when things go bad and you don't see a way out of it. Its an important experience for me too consider these are the first 2 companies I've been acting as a consultant for, so I had to learn a really tough lesson during an even tougher time.

      When business is NOT booming, and your weeks away from going out of business... that is not a time to start investing in more online advertising. Especially when the little bit of advertising you have online already isn't working. We wound up doing so many things and were so desperate, that online marketing ruined our focus and our overall strategy.

      Wound up being offline marketing that saved the day, and I'll be posting a thread about it later. Really is such a great feeling once all that hard work finally pays off. Moreso the relief you feel, like a breath of fresh air.

      -Red
      I look forward to your post, Red;
      After Hurricane Sandy, I would think there would be a lot of call for both of those services, especially as insurance pay-outs flow into the area. Do you think that other marketers/contractors were talking people out of using the services your clients advertised on line? Are there other reasons you feel the face-to-face strategy works better?
      sign me- A hurricane tested offline Warrior from Florida -- Shelley Owens
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  • Profile picture of the author patking76
    Great post! Thanks for sharing your success with us!
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  • Profile picture of the author Lori Kelly
    Good thread. You have included some very helpful information but I believe this is your key:

    I thought I would post here as an example of what most any of us can do for a local business owner if they simply give us offline marketers a chance and let us help them.
    With that mindset, anything is possible.

    Failure comes in when people care more about selling than helping the business owner.
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    • Profile picture of the author spainops
      Great post.

      I think what you said about not going in with tons of stuff is a great idea - slowly slowly catchee monkey !

      Si
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  • Profile picture of the author quercus5
    Awesome! And also great knowing that internet marketing techniques can work in the real world too!
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  • Profile picture of the author australianfranchises
    Banned
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  • Profile picture of the author Rick Britton
    Great post

    Could you explain how you go about pricing the services?

    thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author azurews
    Great tips! Maybe they could motivate the staff by having a competition to see who gets the most subscribers and offer a prize to the employee who wins.
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  • Profile picture of the author him77
    Did you get the sales letter from a wso? And if so could u name it?
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    • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
      Originally Posted by him77 View Post

      Did you get the sales letter from a wso? And if so could u name it?
      No WSO, I wrote the sales letter myself. My advice is to just sit down and write something that addresses and identifies a pain or problem they already have, and how you can help them solve it. I would suggest dealing with just one niche. So if you are going to send to restaurants, choose a certain niche in that and make the copy just for that niche.

      My letter was to pizza restaurants, so my headline was something like: "An Open Letter to Pizza Restaurants in [My Town Name] Who Want to Get More Customers and Increase Customer Loyalty - While Cutting Ad Costs at the Same Time"

      Any owner who wants more customers and is sick of paying for all the print ads that don't result in more business will want to know more. If you don't know a prospect's frustrations, it is a good idea to find out by just asking them. You could hire someone on fivver to simply call restaurant owners and tell them you are doing a survey. Then ask them what their single biggest frustration is in marketing to get new business.

      As for the letter, don't make it hypey copy, just be honest and tell them how you can solve a problem they probably have already. Mine was showing them a simple and inexpensive way to get more customers, increase their loyalty, while reducing ad costs at the same time. My service focused on SMS marketing.

      Wrap up the letter by making and offer of some kind and make it easy for them to call or email you. Once you get the appt, set up a demo that is specific to that business. So your SMS reply would have a sample coupon and mention the business by name in the reply. For the call portion, record a custom greeting or get someone on fivver to do it for you. That extra effort will do wonders for closing the sale.

      Hope that helps!
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  • Profile picture of the author kyle4hire
    What's wso him77?


    This is really awesome men.. Thanks for sharing this kind of thought of you, I wish I could apply this also on my business.
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  • Profile picture of the author EdKirby
    Very cool post! Thanks for sharing. Are you working within that one niche?

    Some of the other experts on this forum have indicated that it's better to focus you energy on one niche at a time. It sounds like good advice I've yet to take myself.
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  • Profile picture of the author mayankgangwal
    Wow cool post i will try and will reply you if i get success
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  • Profile picture of the author Claire Koch
    now i knowwwwwwww *-)
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  • Profile picture of the author qrjunkie
    [QUOTE=xlfutur1;6136761]I thought I would post here as an example of what most any of us can do for a local business owner if they simply give us offline marketers a chance and let us help them.

    If you are new to offline and don't have one client yet, don't despair, they are out there and they need our help so keep at it.

    Here's the story....

    I had lunch with the sales manager of a restaurant client of mine today, who just about 1 year ago came on board after I demoed an SMS system (using Twilio) for him and the owner. (I originally sent a letter to them about SMS and the owner called me back about 2 weeks later)

    i need your help to sell this service... what letter did you send.
    thank you. you can pm as well
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    • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
      [quote=qrjunkie;8089866]
      Originally Posted by xlfutur1 View Post

      I thought I would post here as an example of what most any of us can do for a local business owner if they simply give us offline marketers a chance and let us help them.

      If you are new to offline and don't have one client yet, don't despair, they are out there and they need our help so keep at it.

      Here's the story....

      I had lunch with the sales manager of a restaurant client of mine today, who just about 1 year ago came on board after I demoed an SMS system (using Twilio) for him and the owner. (I originally sent a letter to them about SMS and the owner called me back about 2 weeks later)

      i need your help to sell this service... what letter did you send.
      thank you. you can pm as well
      It was a 3 page sales letter as I remember and I focused on 2 points - how to get more customers, and how to reduce their ad costs at the same time. Looking back, I would probably write the copy differently, but what the heck, they called so it doesn't matter. Turns out their print ad costs were killing them so that message definitely hit home.

      The key to getting the gig though was to set up a custom demo for them before I met with them. When we sat down, I asked a few questions as to what they were trying to do, I explained how SMS marketing worked briefly, then simply had them text: pizza to a local phone number. They got the reply back and I explained they were now inside a database for future marketing.

      I then had them CALL the same number and they reached a prompt saying "press 1 to join our awesome list, or press 2 to connect with our store". When they pressed "2", the phone rang at the business. This was all set up before the meeting.

      This stuff may sound simple to us, but to a local business owner they are very impressed. All the other website, email, and adwords work came after I had developed a relationship with them over a period of the first 6 months.

      Business is still booming by the way, both the restaurant and the catering business.
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  • Profile picture of the author qrjunkie
    2) Last fall I took over their website because they were basically getting hosed from the guys that were doing it previously. I converted their existing ASP site to a wordpress site (a guy on Fiverr did a terrific job on that) so I could incorporate some good plugins. When I did this, I included a php mobile site (thanks Kevin Kooch!) with a redirect as well. (G analytics shows they get 30% of visitors to the mobile site very consistently.)

    WHICH PLUG INS?
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy Lemos
    The fact that you offered exceptional value to this business puts you in the front. This a key most people miss and you described it- ONE THING AT THE TIME. This is how any business become affective. You add more and more value through time one step at a time. Congrats to your success man.

    You should definitely create a WSO on this man.

    Andy
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    • Profile picture of the author KMalo
      Originally Posted by Andy Lemos View Post

      The fact that you offered exceptional value to this business puts you in the front. This a key most people miss and you described it- ONE THING AT THE TIME. This is how any business become affective. You add more and more value through time one step at a time. Congrats to your success man.

      You should definitely create a WSO on this man.

      Andy
      Why should he? He's just told everybody here step by step what he did.
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  • Profile picture of the author FitMarketer
    Great share of an exact proven method.

    I will definatly look for a way to impliemt this into my current strategy.

    Thanks
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