Every offline marketer in the world loves lead generation methods that don't cost us a penny.
However, I've also found that while I may not pay cash upfront for free lead gen methods, I always end up paying in "time" currency.
However, I also noticed something else.
Using only free lead gen methods causes me a certain level of anxiety that eats away at my peace of mind.
Maybe it's just me and my quirky personality.
Maybe it's because I'm trying to build a real business that will stand the test of time.
Or maybe it's because I like the feeling of knowing that if something happens to all the no-cost lead gen stuff I'm doing, I can still hit all of my income goals for the month.
That's what using paid advertising does for me.
And no I'm not talking about spending thousands of dollars per month. I started by spending $50 here and $75 there.
(Although I can make a bulletproof case that you should be more concerned about your return on your investment than the cost of a ad.)
Even that little bit of advertising money, when done with the right message to market match, can reap a really good return on your investment.
Now, just to be clear.
I'm not saying that there is any virtue or value in using paid advertising, just for the sake of doing it.
You should ONLY use paid advertising if you're striving to build solid, consistent and predictable lead sources.
Here's the best way I can explain it:
Your paid sources are your pillars. So, that could be the following:
Pillar #1: You invest $150 per month to have a flyer for your local chamber inserted into their monthly mailers.
Pillar #2: You invest $100 per week in banner ads on your local industry association websites.
Pillar #3: You invest $100 per week in facebook ads that target local business owners.
Pillar #4: You invest $200 per month to get display ads in your local industry association magazines.
Then, you layer your free lead gen methods on top of those paid strategies to give you additional streams of leads and to fill your time with productive and profitable activity.
In every busines (except in the internet marketing guru's business), there are always slower and busier times. It's the flow of life.
See, the paid strategies that I love are the ones that I setup once a month or week and just check my stats and results to see what's working.
Yes, that still requires work like copywriting and design but it still does wonders for my mindset knowing that I have systems setup.
But, you have to do some self evaluating and find out what excites and energizes you more.
Having ads and lead gen funnels that are setup and are stable or hoping that your free ad, listing or post stick long enough for you to get a deal?
Plus, it's much easier to get into the right mindset when you're paying for advertising.
The mindset of "setting up a complete funnel that gets results because I'm paying for it".
That's a far cry from the just throw something against a wall and see what sticks, because after all it's free.
Now, go close some deals,
P.S. I know you may be short on cash right now, but as soon as you get some breathing room, you have to fight to get at least one effective ad setup that you can pay to get placed in front of your target market.