How to Generate Offline Leads?

27 replies
Hi guys,

I am looking for some brainstorming ideas for generating leads for a offline business. A friend of mine is working with a big company in a outlet store with very few walk-in customers. Now that he is off the fixed training-wage of $9.50 he gets $4.50 plus the commissions. At the moment he is working for putting the money back in his car in form of gas. The problem is that he gets also paid for online orders, but he has to order it at the store with the customer (no affiliate program to go just online)

I hope we can create a neat topic with plenty of ideas for others that are captured in the same trap.

I will start with some points (just ideas no plans for exact implementation)

Craigslist Classified Advertising

I never had experiences with advertising on Craigslist, but I heard that some member are having success by doing this. I guess the biggest advantage is that if you found a way that works your are more independent from Google. I think I read a case study were someone was advertising for webdesign services and outsourced it then to Indian freelancers. Any tips on how I could use this lead source effectively?

Google Places or Google+

To stand out of the massive amount of businesses I always read the advice to use Google Places and set up a local business profile on Google+. I never used this before and have no clue or data about the usefulness of this way. I guess it might be a good try. Does anybody have tips how to optimize the Google Places entry with f.e. keyword research?

Local Business Directories

I know that Google Places is more or less a local business directory, but I thought about mentioning others as a separated point. Do you think it is good to create additional listings on sites like yelp, yext, yp.com and so on...

Keep in mind that the interested people need to come into the store. So I guess it would be good to use a separated Email-Address and maybe a extra phone number to handle the business stuff.


Now I would like to hear your opinion and tips. Any good case studies?
#business #generate #leads #local #offline
  • Profile picture of the author digichik
    Perhaps I'm missing something... but why doesn't the large company he works for have a marketing plan in place. Why does he need you to come to the WF to put together a strategic marketing plan together for free, if he is working for a large company. What kind of ideas and programs does their marketing department offer.

    If this large company needs a marketing plan, then that will probably cost the tens of thousands of dollars; they should be more than willing to pay that, in order to make million$$$
    Signature



    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7528258].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Dr Boom
      Originally Posted by digichik View Post

      Perhaps I'm missing something... but why doesn't the large company he works for have a marketing plan in place. Why does he need you to come to the WF to put together a strategic marketing plan together for free, if he is working for a large company. What kind of ideas and programs does their marketing department offer.

      If this large company needs a marketing plan, then that will probably cost the tens of thousands of dollars; they should be more than willing to pay that, in order to make million$$$
      Good question!
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7528359].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
        Thanks for the posts, although they are not very goal-oriented.

        I guess the big corporation has no interest to advertise for a outlet store, where they sell all the products for low prices and the profit margin is lower.

        I think they know exactly what is cheaper for them: paying a higher fixed wage per hour or a minimum plus the commissions. Pretty tough, but as far as I know not unusual in the US and the corporate world. :rolleyes:

        Let's go back to the topic and make this a useful resource for others who try to sell goods/services local.
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7528882].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author umc
          This sounds odd. I've never heard of any big company that would allow their in store sales guy to produce marketing materials in the form of online or offline ads for their brand. They provide all of the advertising for their own stores, and if they don't, they don't stay open very long. Why is it the responsibility of your friend to market the store that he works for, and why would they let him do that? And if he only gets commission for online orders if those people actually come into the store, then he's not even getting paid for online orders in reality. Sounds like a really crappy job to me. To be honest, I've never heard of anyone being expected to market the outlet store for a big company that they work for. Is this just some idea he's cooked up in his head? I ask because the company could get really mad if he went out unilaterally and promoted the brand in a way that they did not approve.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7528955].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Mwind076
    I agree, something is weird. I do see that the OP is in Austria, but it's not clear if this business is there or here in the US. Maybe they do things WAY different there?
    Signature

    Looking for answers on how to SUCCESSFULLY market your company?
    Cold Calling, Appointment Setting, Training, Consulting - we do it all!
    PM for more information

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7529028].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
    This can be done.

    I used to sell for a major wireless carrier (back in the 90's) and I had many more accounts than others. The other sales people were sticking to the company marketing plan, which was terrible. I came up with my own set of practices to draw in referrals. Working inside the company allowed me to come up with all sorts of benefits I could offer...I bent the rules in my favor.

    Without knowing what industry he is in, it is hard to help. The fundamentals of sales can work for him. Tell him to find ways to:

    1) Upsell
    2) Cross Sell
    3) Get referrals
    4) Build a list

    For example, he could begin to keep a private list of his customers. Tell them that he will let them know the next time there is a sale or new product. He keeps his own list and tells the customer it is his private list. If they trust him, they will have no problem giving their name, phone, and email. After they leave he writes down what they bought and any other notes he could think of about what they like.

    He then looks through the list regularly and calls the people on the list that he can offer a product to. If he gets no answer, he can just leave a message and say he is emailing them the info. He gets them to come in and makes the sale - attempting to bundle in some additional complimentary products.

    I'm not sure if he can personally discount products but if so, perhaps he could offer a discount for a referral name and phone number that he could contact. That's off the top of my head, I am sure there is much more he could do.

    If he really wanted to push the line, he could find other companies who sell complimentary products and ask if he can sell for them on a commission basis.
    Signature
    Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7529403].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
    Thanks for the posts. Yes it is a real crappy job, but he had to take it after 19 months of unemployment. Honestly a sad story, being an electrical engineer (more than $50k in student loan debts) and selling appliances, electronics and credit cards for a corporation on a minimum wage, when other people are preparing to retire slowly.

    I am currently in the US and I just wanted to help him. I would appreciate more useful tips. And we could discuss the new slavery by the big corporations somewhere else in the Off-topic section.

    @Dan McCoy

    Thank you for the hints. He is allowed to advertise on his own and acquire customers through contacts and family members etc. They don't pay commission if he is not doing the order in the store over their internet listings.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7531971].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author umc
      Dan's post made me think about how some people will go to outlet stores and buy items to resell on sites like Ebay. So, maybe he could make some bigger deals in bulk if he could find some good Ebay sellers locally that would be willing to buy a bunch of merchandise kind of at wholesale at the store. I've heard of people doing some similar things with watches at certain outlets. In fact, I used to buy watches at an outlet store and flip them on Ebay many years ago. I didn't have the funds to be more than a hobby seller, but I heard that I could have gotten better deals if I had bought more. Maybe he could provide those goods at wholesale and close some bigger deals that way.

      Sorry he got stuck with such a crappy job. Hopefully he can find some engineering work to justify his loans at some point and help him repay them.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7532687].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    The phone. Mail. Walking in and introducing yourself.

    Great ways to generate leads.
    Signature
    Final Expense Agent Mentor -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7532725].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
      @umc

      That sound like a good idea. I will definitely check out this method.

      @Rearden

      Okay this is something that I guess will be very work intensive and not very effective if he calls a bunch of people in a metro area of more than 1 million inhabitants. I assume the probability that he will spend more money on his phone bill then finding someone who needs a new fridge is much higher.

      I do appreciate your tip, but to make this valuable for me or someone else ,looking for information, it would be great if you could explain your approach more precisely.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535019].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    Don't have much to go on when you haven't explained exactly what your comrade is selling and to whom.

    Pretty basic...

    -Walk into businesses/knock on residential doors, introduce yourself, what you're offering, and ask them if they'd like to hear more.
    -Cold call businesses and ask for the owner, introduce yourself and what you do, then ask for a 5 minute appointment to show him what your company does.
    -Mail postcards to a well-defined, high odds list of businesses or residentials, and schedule appointments at their home or your office to show them what you do for a living.
    Signature
    Final Expense Agent Mentor -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535197].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
      @Rearden

      You should read my entire posts. I mentioned that he is selling appliances (fridges, etc.) and electronics

      Thanks you anyway! I am sure it will help someone.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535731].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Rearden
    Tell him to go door-to-door with a brochure or to do a survey style approach where he can gather intel on which product to pitch (fridges, washer/dryer units, TVs, etc.).
    Signature
    Final Expense Agent Mentor -- Providing On-Going, Personalized Mentorship And Training From A Real Final Expense Producer To Agents New To The Final Expense Life Insurance Business.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7535957].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author umc
    To be honest, I think I'd spend my extra time and energy on finding some other work to make more money instead of investing more time and maybe even money into that job, unless there is a really large upside to what he's doing. If the commissions are really large, maybe he could make good money, I don't know. But I'd probably be looking for other ways to make more money instead of settling in there. I hope it works out for the guy.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7536039].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
    Thank you.

    @umc

    Yeah he is applying for other jobs (mostly with the State of Kentucky). I think he sent out more than 190 applications or more, but he is relatively old. He went back to college after the Navy. I guess it is everywhere the same - Companies want young graduates with the knowledge of a 60 year old worker. I hope he will find a better job, but at the moment he has to make the best out of the situation.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7537886].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author umc
      Originally Posted by Kaizen5 View Post

      Thank you.

      @umc

      Yeah he is applying for other jobs (mostly with the State of Kentucky). I think he sent out more than 190 applications or more, but he is relatively old. He went back to college after the Navy. I guess it is everywhere the same - Companies want young graduates with the knowledge of a 60 year old worker. I hope he will find a better job, but at the moment he has to make the best out of the situation.
      I live in Clarksville, IN, right across the bridge from Louisville, Kentucky. First, there are jobs to be had, but I will say that it can be tough to find one unless you know someone. This area, in particular, is quite tight knit and people seem to stay friends with people they went to high school with forever, and if you're in one of those circles it is good, if not, I would imagine that makes it hard. Still though, there are ways (see 48days.net and Dan Miller's books) to get jobs.

      Honestly though, I don't understand why more people don't strike out on their own like I did years ago. My wife and I have been successfully self-employed for 13 years. I just shut down my detailing business because there is too much work there and I can't handle it all. Why? Because my cleaning business is going so well, and I have too much work there too. Did I mention that I have people wanting to pay me to watch their pets when they go out of town, at their house, but I can't do it anymore because I clean too much? Or that I've had to turn away carpet cleaning work because of that same issue?

      What is my point? There is work out there. If you can do any of those things that I just mentioned, nobody cares how old you are. Your friend could hustle up self-employed work. I don't know what area of Kentucky he's in, but certainly in the bigger cities, there is work to be had. There are lots of people gainfully employed and working long hours that need someone to cut their grass, watch their kids or pets, paint some rooms, pick up dog poop from their yards, clean their house, etc.

      People have all kinds of reasons as to why they can't find work, all the while someone like me is turning it down because I have too much. My friend has a handyman business, and can't find anyone to work, so he can't keep up with his workload either. I could go on and on.
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7538226].message }}
      • Profile picture of the author DABK
        He could make friends with companies that manage apartment buildings... every now and again they need a new fridge or stove.

        He could join real estate groups (Kentuckiana Real Estate Investors Association @ www.kreis.com,Louisville, Kentucky Real Estate Investing Meetup Group @ http://real-estate-investing-clubs.m...ky/louisville/), investors who remodel...
        He could make friends with remodelers... home inspectors, real estate agents, real estate attorneys, real estate appraisers... have an agreement with them... I'll give you xzy for a lead... assuming he can afford...
        {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7538386].message }}
        • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
          @umc

          That's funny, because I live here in Louisville
          Thank you very much. I will check out the Dan Miller book and the 48days thing.

          @DABK

          Thanks man! Your mind is sharp like a razor. Great idea! This is the kind of input I like.
          {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7538869].message }}
          • Profile picture of the author umc
            Originally Posted by Kaizen5 View Post

            @umc

            That's funny, because I live here in Louisville
            Thank you very much. I will check out the Dan Miller book and the 48days thing.

            @DABK

            Thanks man! Your mind is sharp like a razor. Great idea! This is the kind of input I like.
            Louisville, Austria?

            Since your friend has the go ahead to represent the company in sales, maybe put some up on Craigslist. Offer a small percentage off if they come in and ask for him (if he's allowed), or he could find another small business around that wants business and would donate some free gift certificates in exchange for him getting the word out. They win, because he promotes them and they need business, and he wins because he has a little something extra to offer to those that buy from him.

            Apartment communities do buy appliances at times. We used to work for a bunch of them years ago. Most of the cheaper apartment communities try to get used ones, so go for the more upscale apartments. New communities could be great if he could sell a bunch of a particular model.
            {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539386].message }}
            • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
              @umc

              No, I am from Germany, but lived for some months in Austria. Now I live in Louisville, KY for 1 year. I am here with a scholarship from the US Congress and was an exchange student for one semester, but beginning with January I will work in Frankfort

              Thanks for another good point!
              {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539396].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author cash89
    He could contact local appliance repair companies or providers and maybe offer them some type of incentive to refer people who are in need of new appliances. Many people try to get their appliances repaired first, if it can't be repaired they will need to buy. If you can get a few a these repair men to refer you, you should be able to generate a steady amount of business.

    The trick would be finding an incentive to offer the repair man and/or prospective customer.

    I also would not count out cold calling and walk in visits like rearden suggested. I personally know people who have made over 70k a year selling appliances door to door.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539046].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
      @cash89

      I do appreciate that hint, but I guess most repair shops also sell new appliance, but I will note it down and checkt this out, too.

      Maybe I underestimate the cold call and walk-in business But this is at least something that I personally would try to outsource somehow
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539076].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author cash89
    I'm not talking about repair shops, i'm talking about appliance service companies that come out to your home to fix your fridge or washing machine. Many of these companies do not sell their own appliances, especially the smaller providers. They mainly work on the road doing house calls. It would hurt to pick up the local phone book and give them all a call. You won't get any leads from them if you assume that they can't help you.

    I'm not sure what kind of job you or your friend has, but outsourcing cold calls and visits won't be very effective. No one is going to work as hard as you to make the sale, and most won't have the product knowledge. If the retail store is slow on a particular day, whats so horrible about visiting your neighbors to see id you could offer them anything? Even most businesses have a fridge for employees to use, if they don't sell them one!
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539131].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author tryinhere
    A majority of his efforts should be in finding alternate work or starting his own business / services as mentioned, the company will only pimp him like a cheap whore and then spit him out and find a new sucker to come in spinner.
    Signature
    | > Choosing to go off the grid for a while to focus on family, work and life in general. Have a great 2020 < |
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7539554].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author MarkLee743
    Adwords campaign is one of the best way to generate leads.
    Signature

    Wish You Happy New Year 2018 in Advance

    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7540088].message }}
  • Profile picture of the author xlfutur1
    One idea is get to know landlords in the area and offer to sell them appliances cheap when they need them. I have some rental properties and I wouldn't mind having a guy to go to when I need a really cheap refrigerator, stove or microwave.

    The other thing he could do is get a list of recent movers and send them a letter letting them know about his great deals. I subscribe to infofree.com and you can get lists of people who have recently moved or bought a house. Those people will be looking for new appliances and electronics.

    Lastly, maybe your friend should visit the warrior forum often and learn some skills to break free from the minimum wage gig selling appliances with no marketing support.
    {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7540410].message }}
    • Profile picture of the author Kaizen5
      @MarkLee743

      AdWords is one possibility, but targeting the US or Canadian market I would also suggest to try bingAds. They have decent traffic and lower prices than Google. :rolleyes:

      @xlfutur1

      Yes landlords or owners of rental property sounds reasonable to go for.

      I looked up infofree.com and from my first impression I think this tip is precious. Can you give some more information about the depth of the provided data? I saw they don't give you the email addresses due to regulations.

      :rolleyes:

      Thank you guys for all the input! Collaborating with you rocks and we build a value for the whole warrior community
      {{ DiscussionBoard.errors[7541828].message }}

Trending Topics