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EXECUTION Building a six figure per month business at 17

Telamon25346

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Hello, my name is George and im an entrepreneur in the dallas area.

some background before i get into this:
I've been on this forum for a bit, I read Mj's book last year in winter, im currently in the middle of unscripted. but Ive since spent my time reading other books and just thinking of business ideas.

I go to an engineering school here in dallas, courtesy of my parents and my original motivation to be an engineer. But I've quickly found out that i do not want the life that they are promising me. theres weekly college fairs and internship partners at our school and every person preaches the same thing: come with us, you might end up with a high paying job that involves painful commutes and overworked hours, and chances are you'll be doing lots of menial projects. but hey engineering everyone will be proud of you!

I've since decided to look for alternatives. hence why I'm here. I've been looking for a business that I could work on while i attend this school. this is when i found sean marshalls thread. it sounded great and perfect for my situation, and i figured i have nothing to lose.

that was around last month, but here's what ive done since then. I got my company registered as an LLC, set up my website in a few days and all that www.vitreousmarketing.com. took a couple of brief courses on SEO so i can understand what im selling. and now my main focus has been actually selling to clients. I want to build this from $0 a month to a large number, something that i can always work towards, i settled on $10,000 a month as my first goal. six figures a month might be next years goal or this year's, depending on how quick i can get to $10,000 first.

anyway, aside from the numbers, my main goal here is to
1: prove to my parents that i dont have to attend an ivy leage college and spend my life working at a large engineering facility like boeing or bell to be happy and successful.
2: get my teachers off my case, I'm really afraid of living the workslave life that they're selling me, every day im at school im reminded of what my future will be like if i choose to become an engineer.
3: live an unscripted life. i eventually want to sell this marketing business and create a product or a service that's truly fastlane, something i can enjoy. and then use that to start accelerating my wealth and retire early, or simply just have the option of retiring :)
4: help out my family. I was born in zambia, and I'm fortunate enough that my father managed to move me and my mother jere in the U.S. we're not exactly struggling, but the majority of my family is. i want to help them move over here and escape the situation that they're living in currently
5:use this thread as accountability and a documentation for anyone else that's in my same situation. this forum had been so helpful to me and i thought id help out as well.
and yeah, that's the situation...

I'll update this thread with the details of how im approaching clients, my sales pitch, calling and meeting them, and my current routine, but I'm on the bus to school right now (can you believe i typed this on my phone ). so ill get back when i have the time.
 

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Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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Dallas, Texas
alright, update for how i'm trying to get new clients. I've had a few failed approaches, I tried cold emailing in a weird way that basically made my emails look like spam. I've now changed it up.

What I do is I record a 5 minute video or so talking about the clients website, What they're doing good on, how they can improve, what I do, etc. and then I show them what their competitors are doing SEO wise, and the results that (i'm 100% confident i can deliver) they could get if they improved their SEO. If I get no response from this email in the first few business days, I'll send them an email asking if they're still interested, and I'll add a website Audit PDF into the email. I'm also planning on calling them, as a check up to make sure they know that i'm interested in helping them and that I've already contacted them a few times.

My main goal with this method is to show them the benefit of working with me. I'll show them who I am and my company site, so they know i'm not some anonymous salesperson, and then I'll show them the statistics behind SEO and a working example (their competitor) using tools like ahrefs and SEMrush. this will hopefully put some value on the table, and also add some perceived value of having SEO/marketing work for their company.

I've been sending out these videos every morning (I wake up at 5, do my resistance training, then record these videos and email them out) and so far I've sent 3, it's been 3 days since I've decided to use this approach. so I'm staying on track so far :D it's been cold, but it's only been 3 days and my first videos definitely won't be as good as my last few videos. it's always an improvement. I might pick up a book on sales soon. to make my videos better, but for now I've been winging it trying to make them seem as appealing as I know how. If you'd like to give me any help on the videos or my approach. please tell me! i'm always looking to improve my way of doing things, especially with my site and my approach.
 

Maxboost

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alright, update for how i'm trying to get new clients. I've had a few failed approaches, I tried cold emailing in a weird way that basically made my emails look like spam. I've now changed it up.

What I do is I record a 5 minute video or so talking about the clients website, What they're doing good on, how they can improve, what I do, etc. and then I show them what their competitors are doing SEO wise, and the results that (i'm 100% confident i can deliver) they could get if they improved their SEO. If I get no response from this email in the first few business days, I'll send them an email asking if they're still interested, and I'll add a website Audit PDF into the email. I'm also planning on calling them, as a check up to make sure they know that i'm interested in helping them and that I've already contacted them a few times.

My main goal with this method is to show them the benefit of working with me. I'll show them who I am and my company site, so they know i'm not some anonymous salesperson, and then I'll show them the statistics behind SEO and a working example (their competitor) using tools like ahrefs and SEMrush. this will hopefully put some value on the table, and also add some perceived value of having SEO/marketing work for their company.

I've been sending out these videos every morning (I wake up at 5, do my resistance training, then record these videos and email them out) and so far I've sent 3, it's been 3 days since I've decided to use this approach. so I'm staying on track so far :D it's been cold, but it's only been 3 days and my first videos definitely won't be as good as my last few videos. it's always an improvement. I might pick up a book on sales soon. to make my videos better, but for now I've been winging it trying to make them seem as appealing as I know how. If you'd like to give me any help on the videos or my approach. please tell me! i'm always looking to improve my way of doing things, especially with my site and my approach.
cold emailing is a numbers game. You are wasting time if you are only doing 3. You need to be sending at least 50-100 emails per day to get your sales pipe full.

I would cold call them first to gauge interest, before making a video that eats up your time.
 
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Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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cold emailing is a numbers game. You are wasting time if you are only doing 3. You need to be sending at least 50-100 emails per day to get your sales pipe full.

I would cold call them first to gauge interest, before making a video that eats up your time.
Hm, good idea, I sent out cold emails originally but I thought I should focus on offering value instead of having an email that looks like it would get sent to the spam folder.

I'll take your advice and add calling as well as sending out my videos, I'm basically going for a shotgun approach here, going with every method in the book.
 

amp0193

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What I do is I record a 5 minute video or so talking about the clients website, What they're doing good on, how they can improve, what I do, etc. and then I show them what their competitors are doing SEO wise, and the results that (i'm 100% confident i can deliver) they could get if they improved their SEO. If I get no response from this email in the first few business days, I'll send them an email asking if they're still interested, and I'll add a website Audit PDF into the email. I'm also planning on calling them, as a check up to make sure they know that i'm interested in helping them and that I've already contacted them a few times.
You're on the right track here.

I've gotten hundreds of spam emails offering web services. If I ever got a video or an audit like this, I would 100% read it in it's entirety. It's free value. I want to know what sucks about my website!

Keep doing it, keep refining the pitch. You'll figure it out.
 

Maxboost

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You're on the right track here.

I've gotten hundreds of spam emails offering web services. If I ever got a video or an audit like this, I would 100% read it in it's entirety. It's free value. I want to know what sucks about my website!

Keep doing it, keep refining the pitch. You'll figure it out.
GIANT WASTE OF TIME. I used to do quick landing pages in my pitches but got no where with it.

Short, personalized emails with a ONE sentence that piques their interest works best. You should be giving follow up emails as well if there is no response.

Good luck its tough out there
 

amp0193

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Short, personalized emails with a ONE sentence that piques their interest works best. You should be giving follow up emails as well if there is no response.
I could see this being really effective.

Every spam email I get is paragraphs long.

A 1 sentence one would stand out... and even seem personal.
 

Danny01

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Hello, my name is George and im an entrepreneur in the dallas area.

some background before i get into this:
I've been on this forum for a bit, I read Mj's book last year in winter, im currently in the middle of unscripted. but Ive since spent my time reading other books and just thinking of business ideas.

I go to an engineering school here in dallas, courtesy of my parents and my original motivation to be an engineer. But I've quickly found out that i do not want the life that they are promising me. theres weekly college fairs and internship partners at our school and every person preaches the same thing: come with us, you might end up with a high paying job that involves painful commutes and overworked hours, and chances are you'll be doing lots of menial projects. but hey engineering everyone will be proud of you!

I've since decided to look for alternatives. hence why I'm here. I've been looking for a business that I could work on while i attend this school. this is when i found sean marshalls thread. it sounded great and perfect for my situation, and i figured i have nothing to lose.

that was around last month, but here's what ive done since then. I got my company registered as an LLC, set up my website in a few days and all that www.vitreousmarketing.com. took a couple of brief courses on SEO so i can understand what im selling. and now my main focus has been actually selling to clients. I want to build this from $0 a month to a large number, something that i can always work towards, i settled on $10,000 a month as my first goal. six figures a month might be next years goal or this year's, depending on how quick i can get to $10,000 first.

anyway, aside from the numbers, my main goal here is to
1: prove to my parents that i dont have to attend an ivy leage college and spend my life working at a large engineering facility like boeing or bell to be happy and successful.
2: get my teachers off my case, I'm really afraid of living the workslave life that they're selling me, every day im at school im reminded of what my future will be like if i choose to become an engineer.
3: live an unscripted life. i eventually want to sell this marketing business and create a product or a service that's truly fastlane, something i can enjoy. and then use that to start accelerating my wealth and retire early, or simply just have the option of retiring :)
4: help out my family. I was born in zambia, and I'm fortunate enough that my father managed to move me and my mother jere in the U.S. we're not exactly struggling, but the majority of my family is. i want to help them move over here and escape the situation that they're living in currently
5:use this thread as accountability and a documentation for anyone else that's in my same situation. this forum had been so helpful to me and i thought id help out as well.
and yeah, that's the situation...

I'll update this thread with the details of how im approaching clients, my sales pitch, calling and meeting them, and my current routine, but I'm on the bus to school right now (can you believe i typed this on my phone ). so ill get back when i have the time.
Nice Concept. However, you should start from the person closest to you. Your friends, relatives might have businesses that may need an online presence. You could build your portfolio from there. Read this: Andy's Inbound Braindump
 
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Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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Okay, Big update time. So it's been a few days since my last post, here's what's happened so far.

I've changed my email plan to something that I'm 100% sure will work for me. I listened to what @Maxboost told me.

I bought a lead generator service called D7 lead generator,
I also signed up for a program called MixMax, It's just an email automation service.

It's been running perfectly so far, I'm just playing the statistics game now.
upload_2019-2-12_9-52-19.png
These are the results, It's been running for 30ish hours, the first group of emails was sent yesterday at 8 and the second set of emails started today at 8 as well. 9 emails bounced, 241 have been sent, and 31% opened and 4 people replied.

Those 4 replies made me super happy, even though all 4 of them basically said "not interested" or something like that: this is the most recent one:
upload_2019-2-12_9-55-33.png

I'm in a bit of a time crunch, because even though I paid for the lead generation service, I didn't have enough cash on hand to pay for the email service as well. it expires in 14 days. so I've got 14 days basically to get a client working with me or I'll have to go work/gather money to pay for the service. But So far so good!
 

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Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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Here's some detail to what the emails i'm sending look like for anyone that's interested in doing the same.

So the first thing I do is use D7 lead generator to generate a list of leads for companies in my area. I look up something like "roofers in Dallas" and then the results populate a large spreadsheet (about 500 or so leads on average).

what I do then is go through the entire lead list and visit the sites to make sure they work, figure out which people might be good potential clients, which people might need web design instead of SEO or something, etc. It takes me about 4 or so hours to get through an entire list, but I like doing it this way because it helps me sort out a lot of junk leads.
here's what the spreadsheet looks like after I go through it:
upload_2019-2-12_10-6-36.png
red means not good, green means they've been added to the email list, orange means they have a terrible website or something like that, and I'm adding them to the email list for Web design instead of SEO. (I only offer those 2 services, easier that way)

Once I've sorted through the lead list, I create a custom spreadsheet. This is the email list spreadsheet.
upload_2019-2-12_10-15-0.png
The 3 columns in the spreadsheet, are the top 3 websites that show up for the keyword that I used to find their site. the rank column is self explanatory, it's the rank that the lead was at for the same keyword.

what I do with this information is I place it into my email software (I export and import as a CSV, and it lets me send customized emails depending on the company).

Here's what the email looks like:
upload_2019-2-12_10-17-12.png
so you can see, it reads through the email list spreadsheet, then fills in the variables with the information in those spreadsheets. this makes my emails look a little more personalized, and it saves me time. I have 2 more emails that I send as follow ups after this one, and they use the same process and variables.
 

Maxboost

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Here's some detail to what the emails i'm sending look like for anyone that's interested in doing the same.

So the first thing I do is use D7 lead generator to generate a list of leads for companies in my area. I look up something like "roofers in Dallas" and then the results populate a large spreadsheet (about 500 or so leads on average).

what I do then is go through the entire lead list and visit the sites to make sure they work, figure out which people might be good potential clients, which people might need web design instead of SEO or something, etc. It takes me about 4 or so hours to get through an entire list, but I like doing it this way because it helps me sort out a lot of junk leads.
here's what the spreadsheet looks like after I go through it:
View attachment 23670
red means not good, green means they've been added to the email list, orange means they have a terrible website or something like that, and I'm adding them to the email list for Web design instead of SEO. (I only offer those 2 services, easier that way)

Once I've sorted through the lead list, I create a custom spreadsheet. This is the email list spreadsheet.
View attachment 23671
The 3 columns in the spreadsheet, are the top 3 websites that show up for the keyword that I used to find their site. the rank column is self explanatory, it's the rank that the lead was at for the same keyword.

what I do with this information is I place it into my email software (I export and import as a CSV, and it lets me send customized emails depending on the company).

Here's what the email looks like:
View attachment 23672
so you can see, it reads through the email list spreadsheet, then fills in the variables with the information in those spreadsheets. this makes my emails look a little more personalized, and it saves me time. I have 2 more emails that I send as follow ups after this one, and they use the same process and variables.
I tried this method. It's too long. I would have trashed it right away if you sent it to me. I would use 1 sentence ONLY until they reply back. Keep sending short emails with 1 sentence until they reply or until you decide to call them.

Send the second half of the email as a follow up.

The call to action is weak and forces the recipient to "think" about what to say.

It's tough out there and there is a lot of noise.

Keep your powder dry...
 

ZeroTo100

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You’re doing a good job, keep grinding!

Here’s what I suggest you do, stop pitching so hard. Really, stop!

Couple of things I wish you would think about...

I think you should demonstrate on your blog a strategy you use in full depth. I also think you should talk more about SEO on your blog and sort of prove yourself in that you know what the heck you’re doing.

I also want you to think about who your customers are..Are they people that know SEO and just don’t have the time to handle SEO or are they people that don’t know SEO and are putting their trust in...YOU?

Additionally, I think social signals will help with that trust as well as guest posting.

You really want to build a business where your reaching out all the time or do you want your future customers reaching out to you? This usually happens through word of mouth.

If I never heard of you, why the hell would I trust you with my business.

Another idea...and I think this might help you get a foot in the door - is to give away the first month free or at least at a significant discount. If you’re charging a % over what you are paying your freelancer, eliminate that % or margin as a discount or trial for your first month.

Lastly, with SEO you have to be honest to who you’re selling to. They won’t see results over night and you should be transparent about that.

Stay local man!
 

NMdad

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And test a different subject line--one that doesn't look like a veiled pitch. For example, for roofers:
  • Subject: Do you fix flat roofs?
  • Body: I help other roofers in [Plano, TX] get more customers/clients who need flat roof repairs. Reply back if you want me to send some of these leads your way.
You'll probably get a way higher open & response rate.
 

emphasize.v1

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Good luck buddy, subscribed to track your progress. You're not alone on this journey.

Sent from my Mi A2 using Tapatalk
 

Andy Black

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I got started leveraging my personal network. Once the ball is rolling referrals start coming in and it snowballs.

I’ve never done cold emailing, but really like the guys on this podcast:
 
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Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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exactly 1 week since my last post. here's where I'm at:

I had a few problems with my google account, the email software, and learning how to use it. But I've gotten better. The first set of leads yielded 1 promising lead. After my 2nd follow up email, the guy emailed me and introduced me to a different person on his team, he says she is who I should be talking to.

So I went ahead and made a 6-minute video going over 3 competitors in their market, showing them how they get their backlinks, their monthly traffic, what they're ranking for, etc. I also sent them a website audit, Just trying to provide lots of upfront value. I sent out that email yesterday, and nothing yet. From a new list of leads, (this one is under pest control) I had one guy email me saying: "if you are so confident in your abilities you should have no problem giving me the first 6 months free". I can't afford to do that, So I instead offered him a very large discount. No response yet.

I know it's not much but I'm really excited that I even got responses from 2 people. I feel like I'm moving in the right direction. My routine every day hasn't changed though, I wake up, do my homework and read, go for a morning run with my dog and exercise, all that stuff. But I feel like I'm not giving myself enough work. So far I've just been emailing these companies and creating leads lists, I was doing much more work when creating my website and learning SEO and all that, but now it seems kind of stagnant.

Anyone else ever been in this situation? Or am I expecting things to move too quickly? I don't doubt that I will gain a client and can actually start growing and providing my service but I feel like I'm not working as hard as possible to make that happen.
 

robotunicr0n

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alright, update for how i'm trying to get new clients. I've had a few failed approaches, I tried cold emailing in a weird way that basically made my emails look like spam. I've now changed it up.

What I do is I record a 5 minute video or so talking about the clients website, What they're doing good on, how they can improve, what I do, etc. and then I show them what their competitors are doing SEO wise, and the results that (i'm 100% confident i can deliver) they could get if they improved their SEO. If I get no response from this email in the first few business days, I'll send them an email asking if they're still interested, and I'll add a website Audit PDF into the email. I'm also planning on calling them, as a check up to make sure they know that i'm interested in helping them and that I've already contacted them a few times.

My main goal with this method is to show them the benefit of working with me. I'll show them who I am and my company site, so they know i'm not some anonymous salesperson, and then I'll show them the statistics behind SEO and a working example (their competitor) using tools like ahrefs and SEMrush. this will hopefully put some value on the table, and also add some perceived value of having SEO/marketing work for their company.

I've been sending out these videos every morning (I wake up at 5, do my resistance training, then record these videos and email them out) and so far I've sent 3, it's been 3 days since I've decided to use this approach. so I'm staying on track so far :D it's been cold, but it's only been 3 days and my first videos definitely won't be as good as my last few videos. it's always an improvement. I might pick up a book on sales soon. to make my videos better, but for now I've been winging it trying to make them seem as appealing as I know how. If you'd like to give me any help on the videos or my approach. please tell me! i'm always looking to improve my way of doing things, especially with my site and my approach.
You need to up your copy game, in my opinion! Check out IceCreamKid's Astonishing Secrets thread on this forum, and here's a shortcut to one of ICK's recommendations: read The Boron Letters by Gary Halbert.

Specifically for sales, I HIGHLY recommend you obtain a copy, study it, and keep by your side at all times Unlimited Power by Tony Robbins it's been helping me a ton recently with my mindset (which affects how you sell!)

Looks like you have a good course set, keep plugging!!
 

Maxboost

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exactly 1 week since my last post. here's where I'm at:

I had a few problems with my google account, the email software, and learning how to use it. But I've gotten better. The first set of leads yielded 1 promising lead. After my 2nd follow up email, the guy emailed me and introduced me to a different person on his team, he says she is who I should be talking to.

So I went ahead and made a 6-minute video going over 3 competitors in their market, showing them how they get their backlinks, their monthly traffic, what they're ranking for, etc. I also sent them a website audit, Just trying to provide lots of upfront value. I sent out that email yesterday, and nothing yet. From a new list of leads, (this one is under pest control) I had one guy email me saying: "if you are so confident in your abilities you should have no problem giving me the first 6 months free". I can't afford to do that, So I instead offered him a very large discount. No response yet.

I know it's not much but I'm really excited that I even got responses from 2 people. I feel like I'm moving in the right direction. My routine every day hasn't changed though, I wake up, do my homework and read, go for a morning run with my dog and exercise, all that stuff. But I feel like I'm not giving myself enough work. So far I've just been emailing these companies and creating leads lists, I was doing much more work when creating my website and learning SEO and all that, but now it seems kind of stagnant.

Anyone else ever been in this situation? Or am I expecting things to move too quickly? I don't doubt that I will gain a client and can actually start growing and providing my service but I feel like I'm not working as hard as possible to make that happen.
You should be building a website and ranking it to prove you know what you are doing. You really are learning along the way.... Right now, people are rightfully skeptical.

You are taking action and moving fast which is good but you need to establish credibility first.
 

robotunicr0n

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+1 to Maxboost, you should SEO your blog or make a demo site that ranks well (and dang if it's ranking well, maybe you could sell something else on it? get two income streams going)
 

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Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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I see now, I will definitely work on credibility now. I actually just had a response that said they looked me up for "dallas SEO" and found that I wasn't first in the rankings. I can see how this helps my company, but my only problem with working on credibility is it takes a considerable amount of time for SEO to work, I chose to do cold emailing because I don't have the money nor time to outsource the SEO for 6 months or do it myself. Nonetheless, I will make it work. I'll post an update when something major happens or if I find something valuable along the way.
 

robotunicr0n

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I see now, I will definitely work on credibility now. I actually just had a response that said they looked me up for "dallas SEO" and found that I wasn't first in the rankings. I can see how this helps my company, but my only problem with working on credibility is it takes a considerable amount of time for SEO to work, I chose to do cold emailing because I don't have the money nor time to outsource the SEO for 6 months or do it myself. Nonetheless, I will make it work. I'll post an update when something major happens or if I find something valuable along the way.
Proof is in the pudding my friend. Someone literally just asked :) I know it takes awhile, don't let this stop what you're already doing, just add it on as another thing you need to do. If more people mention you're not ranked #1, tell them you just started the business a week ago and you're still improving the rank. This is a good jumping off point to explain to them why THEY won't see an immediate increase in their rankings with your help. SEO can do that... make it look like you aren't doing anything, or only marginally, but when done right and optimized appropriately it's amazing. Keep cold contacting in the ways you have been, think of some new ways to do it as well.

Have you looked at sites like Upwork? You might be able to advertise your services on there, or find someone seeking SEO improvements to their site.. if you can find this, follow through with it as this will add another item to your portfolio.
 

NMdad

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I had one guy email me saying: "if you are so confident in your abilities you should have no problem giving me the first 6 months free".
He wants 6 months free? F that guy. Waste no more time on that lead--even if he replies to your discount.
 

Maxboost

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Proof is in the pudding my friend. Someone literally just asked :) I know it takes awhile, don't let this stop what you're already doing, just add it on as another thing you need to do. If more people mention you're not ranked #1, tell them you just started the business a week ago and you're still improving the rank. This is a good jumping off point to explain to them why THEY won't see an immediate increase in their rankings with your help. SEO can do that... make it look like you aren't doing anything, or only marginally, but when done right and optimized appropriately it's amazing. Keep cold contacting in the ways you have been, think of some new ways to do it as well.

Have you looked at sites like Upwork? You might be able to advertise your services on there, or find someone seeking SEO improvements to their site.. if you can find this, follow through with it as this will add another item to your portfolio.
You are going to waste months doing this (speaking from experience). Business owners don't value free labour or cheap labour for that matter. I literally did 3 business websites for free and the business owners didn't even want to pay for hosting!! $50/year..Some will go AWOL, won't answer your email, etc...

Just buy a domain and rank it as fast as possible than sell the domain. Pick a niche like dog grooming, it will save you time. I got a client to the top in as little as 3 weeks because he was in a niche where his competitors had shit website.

Show proof you can do what you say you can do and then sell those results using the same process that you have been doing.

The missing piece to your sales process is your results, proof of work and expertise.
 
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OP
Telamon25346

Telamon25346

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Dec 13, 2017
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Dropping a little update, things are starting to happen...

So It took a while for me to realize I wasn't exactly doing the right work If any at all. I convinced myself that because of school and other things that I would only have time to reach clients by just sending out emails, But I was very wrong.

After a bit of inaction and lazing around, I got my routine back in order, I started practicing self-discipline, and I also started seeing results.

I've been cold calling businesses in my area now, doing around 30 calls a day, and within the first day, I already received 3 warm responses and appointments. There's one guy I'm talking to at a roofing company and he seems very interested, He called me back twice to ask questions, and I asked him a lot of questions and things I learned from a Fastlane member in here, (thank you FOX) and I feel like he's going to be on board. It's very exciting for me as I'm seeing some feedback, be it positive or negative, and I've only been calling for 2 days! I feel like a dunce for having wasted time these past couples of months, but I'm still heading toward my goal and learning on the way there as well.
 

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