The Entrepreneur Forum | Startups | Entrepreneurship | Starting a Business | Motivation | Success

HOT TOPIC Lead Gen for Local Service Businesses

Remove ads while supporting the Unscripted philosophy...become an INSIDER.

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
You're right about the competition in certain trades, but then you can't really go too soft digging into micro trades to avoid competition, because smaller trades will have even less search volume, that's considering that more competitive services have very low volume as it is anyway.

I think I need to make a move on this with a landing page and a call-tracking service to see what I can do.

Do you use a template for landing pages or check out the competition to see what they are doing? A few pointers regarding the landing page would be useful, as I've done various landing pages in the past, but not for a local business. Things like structure, images, number of pages, content, etc.

And would CallRail be suitable for this model? So basically, I want to have a local number from CallRail that would re-direct the calls to the service provider's number and also record the call, so then I could listen to it and come back to the owner after referring him/her a few leads?
 

Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum. Subscribe.

OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Do you use a template for landing pages or check out the competition to see what they are doing? A few pointers regarding the landing page would be useful, as I've done various landing pages in the past, but not for a local business. Things like structure, images, number of pages, content, etc.

Here’s an example of the first iteration of a mobile landing page that went live last week and got a sale already. No other pages on the site other than Privacy, Terms, Disclaimer.

8D938B63-7320-42C7-90F6-42D57447B46E.jpeg
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
And would CallRail be suitable for this model? So basically, I want to have a local number from CallRail that would re-direct the calls to the service provider's number and also record the call, so then I could listen to it and come back to the owner after referring him/her a few leads?
I’ve not used CallRail on client landing pages, although other agencies I subcontract to sometimes do for their clients. Why have I not? I want the client to tell me how things are going. I’m not going to listen to their calls.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Thanks for the example landing page, Andy - that gives me an idea of what to aim for. I'll check out that Lead Gen Simplified thread as well.

As for CallRail, I meant that it would be useful for tracking purposes, to know how many calls you're referring to your client per day/week/month, and in case if the client queried anything, you could always pull up the list of referred calls, as kind of proof of customers that you're sending to him/her.

With regards to listening to calls, I would only do it prior to contacting the client to offer my on-going service, such as what I mentioned earlier, i.e. generate traffic to my own landing page, refer leads via calls to my potential client, then call up the client and say you've sent a few free customers (this is where you'll use CallRail's recordings to describe referred customers) and assuming at least some of them turned into sales, you'll hopefully have a client who would like to continue with what you're doing, but now for a monthly fee + Adwords costs.

Now before I start asking you questions about how to price up my service and how to take payments, let me get the landing page made, receive some traffic, generate calls and I'll come back to you with the results.

One last thing regarding CPC, how would you know that it's a bit too high for whatever service that you're testing and that the client won't be able to afford the advertising + your monthly fee? Is it a case of experimenting with a few clients and then make a decision based on their feedback?

Thanks for all your help.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
One last thing regarding CPC, how would you know that it's a bit too high for whatever service that you're testing and that the client won't be able to afford the advertising + your monthly fee? Is it a case of experimenting with a few clients and then make a decision based on their feedback?
It’s a function of the CPA and how much profit they can make per job, or the LTV of a new customer/client. There’s other factors as well such as some business literally just want to see their own ads running, or they can run break even so long as they keep their crew busy.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Hey Andy,

I finished the landing page over the weekend and adapted it for a number of local areas covered by the service provider, making sure there's a separate page for each micro location.

Since multiple areas are covered, I'm not sure what domain to go for?

So if you were doing carpet cleaning in various areas of Manchester, would you try to find something like "carpetcleaningmanchester.com" or you would go for something more generic like "carpetcleaningexperts.com"?

I know this is a trivial thing and won't matter much, but every little counts.
 

PizzaOnTheRoof

1,000 Miles To Go
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jul 30, 2018
882
1,910
552
Texas
Hey Andy,

I finished the landing page over the weekend and adapted it for a number of local areas covered by the service provider, making sure there's a separate page for each micro location.

Since multiple areas are covered, I'm not sure what domain to go for?

So if you were doing carpet cleaning in various areas of Manchester, would you try to find something like "carpetcleaningmanchester.com" or you would go for something more generic like "carpetcleaningexperts.com"?

I know this is a trivial thing and won't matter much, but every little counts.
Personally I would do a generic domain with a region specific sub domain.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Hey Andy,

I finished the landing page over the weekend and adapted it for a number of local areas covered by the service provider, making sure there's a separate page for each micro location.

Since multiple areas are covered, I'm not sure what domain to go for?

So if you were doing carpet cleaning in various areas of Manchester, would you try to find something like "carpetcleaningmanchester.com" or you would go for something more generic like "carpetcleaningexperts.com"?

I know this is a trivial thing and won't matter much, but every little counts.
Both?

Easiest to start with generic, and if volumes justify it you can also get the specific.
 

Matt Sun

Bronze Contributor
Speedway Pass
Oct 21, 2017
91
169
141
Argentina
Hi guys, i'm triying to do this too.

I Got a PPC campaing started for air conditioner repair in my city. The impressions and clicks are there I think: 123 impressions and 14 clicks in 10 days, almost 10% ctr and could get to 20% with a good copy.

I got Just two questions:
1) Is there any resource on bulding a landing page for beginners that you guys could recommend ? My progress with Elementor is so slow...
2) Is there a plugin for capturing the leads ? I don't want o use Mailchip or other "free"/paid tool. Just want to have the lead info go to my email or the trades man e-mail after he starts paying me.
Thank you so much.
 

GoodluckChuck

Gold Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Feb 2, 2017
463
1,701
473
my house
Hi guys, i'm triying to do this too.

I Got a PPC campaing started for air conditioner repair in my city. The impressions and clicks are there I think: 123 impressions and 14 clicks in 10 days, almost 10% ctr and could get to 20% with a good copy.

I got Just two questions:
1) Is there any resource on bulding a landing page for beginners that you guys could recommend ? My progress with Elementor is so slow...
2) Is there a plugin for capturing the leads ? I don't want o use Mailchip or other "free"/paid tool. Just want to have the lead info go to my email or the trades man e-mail after he starts paying me.
Thank you so much.
I'll chime in as someone that's done this a lot.

For landing pages I use a normal page builder plugin for wordpress and find a design I think is doing really well for someone else and copy it.

Not 100% copy, but just the same idea then make it my own.

I use analytics and Google Tag Manager to track what happens on the page so I can test different optimizations over time so it's constantly getting better.

For leads, I use a plugin called Gravity forms. They get sent to my email. Sometimes I use Zapier to also make leads to onto a Google Sheet for easier access.

My advice is to be thorough and test everything multiple times as if you were a customer so you can catch errors before they cost you money.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Hey Andy,

Just wanted to let you know that thanks to your numerous threads on Adwords and local lead gen, my Adwords campaign is now fully live with a custom landing page for each area that my service provider covers, CallRail number to track/record calls and I've already received a few impressions today.

The landing page is very basic and amateur looking, but it's relevant and will do for now, as I don't fancy spending weeks on building a landing page to start testing.

I started bidding at £3 as the max CPC, so let's see how it goes traffic-wise, as I may have to raise the max CPC to get more clicks, but otherwise currently testing to see if I can make this work.

Will let you know how it goes. Thanks again.
 

Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum. Subscribe.

PizzaOnTheRoof

1,000 Miles To Go
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jul 30, 2018
882
1,910
552
Texas
Hey Andy,

Just wanted to let you know that thanks to your numerous threads on Adwords and local lead gen, my Adwords campaign is now fully live with a custom landing page for each area that my service provider covers, CallRail number to track/record calls and I've already received a few impressions today.

The landing page is very basic and amateur looking, but it's relevant and will do for now, as I don't fancy spending weeks on building a landing page to start testing.

I started bidding at £3 as the max CPC, so let's see how it goes traffic-wise, as I may have to raise the max CPC to get more clicks, but otherwise currently testing to see if I can make this work.

Will let you know how it goes. Thanks again.
You should start a progress thread so new readers can start right from the beginning.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
You should start a progress thread so new readers can start right from the beginning.
I'm not really into journals/progress threads, as I prefer to keep the records on my side only and just participate in relevant discussions, sharing and helping/asking questions wherever I can.

Got my first call today, but unfortunately it went straight to voicemail, as it looks like my service provider doesn't do weekend....Very detailed call from a local customer, leaving her details and asking for a quote on the job required.

Feels like a wasted opportunity, the fact that no one picked up the call...I may need to limit my advertising to certain days/times or maybe find someone who does weekends as well, so this doesn't happen again.

Let's see how the next week goes, I'll refer a few more leads to my current guy, then give him a call and see what says regarding an on-going service.

How do you go about pricing and payment methods Andy? I'll keep my pitch straight-forward, no fancy language, just simple talk, explaining what I do in plain terms and how I can help their business with more customers.

So obviously the monthly cost will be Adwords cost + my management fee. I know this very much depends on the type of the service and the number of leads referred, but would appreciate if you could give me some ballpark figures or past client examples that you have dealt with, so I can have a rough idea of what to aim for.

Thanks for all your help.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
I'm not really into journals/progress threads, as I prefer to keep the records on my side only and just participate in relevant discussions, sharing and helping/asking questions wherever I can.

Got my first call today, but unfortunately it went straight to voicemail, as it looks like my service provider doesn't do weekend....Very detailed call from a local customer, leaving her details and asking for a quote on the job required.

Feels like a wasted opportunity, the fact that no one picked up the call...I may need to limit my advertising to certain days/times or maybe find someone who does weekends as well, so this doesn't happen again.

Let's see how the next week goes, I'll refer a few more leads to my current guy, then give him a call and see what says regarding an on-going service.

How do you go about pricing and payment methods Andy? I'll keep my pitch straight-forward, no fancy language, just simple talk, explaining what I do in plain terms and how I can help their business with more customers.

So obviously the monthly cost will be Adwords cost + my management fee. I know this very much depends on the type of the service and the number of leads referred, but would appreciate if you could give me some ballpark figures or past client examples that you have dealt with, so I can have a rough idea of what to aim for.

Thanks for all your help.
Did you try to find someone to help that consumer who left that detailed voicemail?

I typically charge $300/mth for a local service business. Sometimes higher, sometimes lower.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Did you try to find someone to help that consumer who left that detailed voicemail?

I typically charge $300/mth for a local service business. Sometimes higher, sometimes lower.
Thanks Andy, I had a similar figure in mind, around £200-300/month here in the UK.

You have to bare in mind that the bulk of the service provider's cost will be Adwords advertising alone, so in some cases they would be paying £700-800/month for that, plus your service fee, so they end up paying over £1k/month for marketing and it better pay off, because otherwise that is a quite high expense for any local business.

As for the recent customer, I don't deal with them directly. The voicemail was actually left on my service provider's phone number, as I'm re-directing and recording calls via CallRail, so I'm not involved in the process from the customer's point of view.

I'm sure my guy will give her a call first thing tomorrow morning, which hopefully won't be too late, but it's a lesson learned anyway regarding scheduled advertising.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Checking my search terms daily to make sure my ads don't get triggered for irrelevant stuff, eventhough I'm bidding on "keyword +location", but as far as I understand, you can't look up every single search term unless it was triggered by a "significant number of people", according to Google. Is that correct?

Source: View the search terms report - Google Ads Help

So if a keyword triggered a click, then it does come up under "Search Terms", showing specifically what search term triggered that keyword. However, what if I wanted to look up all the search terms that triggered my ad that day, but not necessarily resulted in clicks?

If a keyword gets only 1 impressions on a given day, can I find out what was the search term that triggered it?

I know this is very simple in Bing Ads, when generating a search terms report, but Google doesn't seem to make it easy, unless I need a visit to Specsavers?

P.S. Andy, hope you don't mind me bombarding your thread with questions, but I'm sure others will learn from my mistakes.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Checking my search terms daily to make sure my ads don't get triggered for irrelevant stuff, eventhough I'm bidding on "keyword +location", but as far as I understand, you can't look up every single search term unless it was triggered by a "significant number of people", according to Google. Is that correct?

Source: View the search terms report - Google Ads Help

So if a keyword triggered a click, then it does come up under "Search Terms", showing specifically what search term triggered that keyword. However, what if I wanted to look up all the search terms that triggered my ad that day, but not necessarily resulted in clicks?

If a keyword gets only 1 impressions on a given day, can I find out what was the search term that triggered it?

I know this is very simple in Bing Ads, when generating a search terms report, but Google doesn't seem to make it easy, unless I need a visit to Specsavers?

P.S. Andy, hope you don't mind me bombarding your thread with questions, but I'm sure others will learn from my mistakes.
If someone clicks an ad any time in the account history then you’ll get to see stats for that search term - most of the time. If no-one ever clicked with a particular search term then we don’t see the data for that search term.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
If someone clicks an ad any time in the account history then you’ll get to see stats for that search term - most of the time. If no-one ever clicked with a particular search term then we don’t see the data for that search term.
A bit cheeky of them not to provide the impressions data, unless something triggers a click, because essentially you'll end up paying for an irrelevant term and only then add it to the negatives list.

Of course, this is not necessarily a big problem, if you are bidding on exact match or even phrase only, but with broad and broad match modified, it's not exactly ideal.

Got 2 more calls today and so far it seems pretty much as I expected in terms of clicks to calls ratio - I haven't calculated any exact numbers, but what's obvious now is that even when I'm getting only 4-5 clicks/day, it's still often enough to generate a call or even two.

Clearly, a day and night difference to all the previous stuff I've done in the past, promoting digital products for weight loss, home improvement and similar, where these kind of numbers would provide no results at all, because in those cases you're dealing with hundreds of clicks until you get a single sale.

This is of course only the case when you've got the complete combination of search terms, ads and landing page right, as Andy has explained it very well in his Holy Trinity of Paid Search.

2 more calls and then I'm getting in touch with my guy to see if we can work together - to be honest, I'm not a fan of this kind of sales talk over the phone, but I guess it's just another barrier to entry that not everyone is willing to climb over.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
A bit cheeky of them not to provide the impressions data, unless something triggers a click, because essentially you'll end up paying for an irrelevant term and only then add it to the negatives list.
Ha. They're totally cheeky. And by default they also hide the "keyword" column when you look at the search terms. I wonder why?

Of course, this is not necessarily a big problem, if you are bidding on exact match or even phrase only, but with broad and broad match modified, it's not exactly ideal.
Exact isn't as exact as you think. Watch your search terms.

Got 2 more calls today and so far it seems pretty much as I expected in terms of clicks to calls ratio - I haven't calculated any exact numbers, but what's obvious now is that even when I'm getting only 4-5 clicks/day, it's still often enough to generate a call or even two.
Awesome. Sometimes it really is like shooting fish in a barrel.

Clearly, a day and night difference to all the previous stuff I've done in the past, promoting digital products for weight loss, home improvement and similar, where these kind of numbers would provide no results at all, because in those cases you're dealing with hundreds of clicks until you get a single sale.
It's similar I think. Are they looking to buy something, or are they looking for information? Get in front of buyers first and get profitable with them, before trying to tackle the info-seekers.

2 more calls and then I'm getting in touch with my guy to see if we can work together - to be honest, I'm not a fan of this kind of sales talk over the phone, but I guess it's just another barrier to entry that not everyone is willing to climb over.
At least it's not a sales call now. You've sent leads and hopefully new business. Do they want more or not? If not, then move on to the next guy.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Andy, I hope I'm not jumping the gun at this point, but how do you manage the payments for your clients and how do you accept payments for advertising cost and the monthly management fee?

So far what I've gathered from your posts is that I should always request payment in advance for the on-coming month to avoid a situation where you've spent the money on Adwords and are now having to chase the payment from your client at the end of the month, plus your service fee...

Direct bank transfer, Paypal, Stripe or something similar?

Feel free to PM, if necessary. Thanks
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Andy, I hope I'm not jumping the gun at this point, but how do you manage the payments for your clients and how do you accept payments for advertising cost and the monthly management fee?

So far what I've gathered from your posts is that I should always request payment in advance for the on-coming month to avoid a situation where you've spent the money on Adwords and are now having to chase the payment from your client at the end of the month, plus your service fee...

Direct bank transfer, Paypal, Stripe or something similar?

Feel free to PM, if necessary. Thanks
I try not to say “should” or “always”. You’ll find a way that works for you.

Most of my clients pay the ad spend directly to Google, and pay me a flat monthly fee in advance. My preference is automated payments as I don’t want to spend time chasing lots of little payments.
 

Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum. Subscribe.

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
@Andy Black

Andy, I've been going through your Adwords and generally the Progress threads of the last few years, and one thing I've noticed which surprised me a bit, was that instead of scaling the number of local lead gen clients to bigger numbers, you decided to switch to completely different business models, where you've created your own Adwords course, expanded into YouTube, paid newsletters, etc.

Of course, I'm all for diversifying income streams and growing on different platforms, but I wondered why you've put the local lead gen to a side and didn't grow it to levels of where you would have 100+ clients all over Ireland, the UK and maybe even the US? I would assume the number of available services and cities with decent search volumes out there would allow to do this?

Granted, it would be a big pain in the bottom to manage all of them yourself, while looking after the campaigns, tracking everything and making sure everyone was happy, but I'm sure you could find a way to outsource this to lessen your workload and allow time for expanding further? I don't mean outsource in a way that you completely detach yourself from everything, but just get some help, possibly from a family member or a friend, to manage the extra work?

To me, it seems like this would've been a much better strategy to grow into 5 figures/month, while maintaining a good work/life balance? I know you've mentioned countless times that you genuinely enjoy the process and want to be involved in everything yourself, which is definitely a good thing, but I'm sure as you know yourself, there are only 24 hours in a day and there's only so much you can do in that time.

So in order to turn this into "a Fastlane business model", whatever you want to call it, to get a higher reward for less time spent on the business, then expanding to more clients and getting people to help you would've been a logical progression.

Would be great to hear your thoughts on this and possibly any limitations of this model that I might not be aware of?

Thanks
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
@Andy Black

Andy, I've been going through your Adwords and generally the Progress threads of the last few years, and one thing I've noticed which surprised me a bit, was that instead of scaling the number of local lead gen clients to bigger numbers, you decided to switch to completely different business models, where you've created your own Adwords course, expanded into YouTube, paid newsletters, etc.

Of course, I'm all for diversifying income streams and growing on different platforms, but I wondered why you've put the local lead gen to a side and didn't grow it to levels of where you would have 100+ clients all over Ireland, the UK and maybe even the US? I would assume the number of available services and cities with decent search volumes out there would allow to do this?

Granted, it would be a big pain in the bottom to manage all of them yourself, while looking after the campaigns, tracking everything and making sure everyone was happy, but I'm sure you could find a way to outsource this to lessen your workload and allow time for expanding further? I don't mean outsource in a way that you completely detach yourself from everything, but just get some help, possibly from a family member or a friend, to manage the extra work?

To me, it seems like this would've been a much better strategy to grow into 5 figures/month, while maintaining a good work/life balance? I know you've mentioned countless times that you genuinely enjoy the process and want to be involved in everything yourself, which is definitely a good thing, but I'm sure as you know yourself, there are only 24 hours in a day and there's only so much you can do in that time.

So in order to turn this into "a Fastlane business model", whatever you want to call it, to get a higher reward for less time spent on the business, then expanding to more clients and getting people to help you would've been a logical progression.

Would be great to hear your thoughts on this and possibly any limitations of this model that I might not be aware of?

Thanks
There’s a few reasons I’ve not got 100 clients in one industry, and have also got a course and paid email newsletter:

1) I like writing and helping people with what I’ve learned, and people asked for a course. The paid email newsletter is also an outlet for me to write and create.

2) I’m good at Google Ads, *and* I’m also good at training/teaching/simplifying. Am I doing people a disservice by not teaching them some of what I’ve learned?

3) I believe that serving the DFY market gives me the material to help the DIY market. It seems a shame not to sell the sawdust in the sawmill.

5) I’m not at €100k/mth, but what I’ve been doing can certainly help people get started and up to €5k/mth and €10k/mth without taking on much of a team. I help a few people get started down that road and let them figure out their own path once they get going. Is it the fastest and easiest way? I don’t know, but it’s a great starting point. You get paid to learn how to generate leads for business owners. You get paid to rub shoulders with business owners and learn the good and the bad.

6) I still like one-on-one communication with clients so still “consult” rather than go fully hands-off. It’s definitely something I’m working on if I want to scale beyond 20-30 clients.

7) I get inbound leads every week for totally different industries. Because I have a problem saying No, I end up spread across too many industries trying to make it work for each client, rather than going deeeep into specific industries. This is due to still being positioned too broadly as “A Google Ads Guy”, instead of “The Guy Who Generates Leads For Blacksmiths.”

8) A tricky part of having lots of small clients is when they all have different websites, and ones that don’t convert visitors into leads very well. We’re working on our own pages that we roll out to client domains, or my own domains. This is a software development project that I’m happy to chip away at. The consulting clients pay for this tech to be built.

9) Yep... I’m spread thin. I’ve a lot going on family wise (this is an understatement), as well as being fascinated by all the different options in front of me. Focusing more would help. That does means saying No more often, and not getting sidetracked by people who want my time. (If/when you get known for generating leads or Google Ads then many people and business owners will want to have a quick chat with you. This is a good thing if you manage it.)

10) More and more clients are coming through who sell courses. It’s not a big leap from selling local services using Google Ads to selling physical and digital products online. I might as well use myself as a guinea pig for that, and also apply learnings from client campaigns to my own offerings.

11) Once you get to 20 stable clients you likely have enough experience and skills to choose slightly different directions. I’m looking at pay-per-lead networks and going with national businesses rather than just adding Blacksmith’s one at a time.

12) My background is IT. I can see opportunities for scaling without taking on clients of a service, but taking on customers who pay for product(s).

13) Client management definitely has to get more organised the more clients you take on. We’re at the point where I’d class our current processes as client management, but we now want to figure out how to manage customers as well. I’m happy to always have a few clients, but I don’t want to scale that any bigger.

14) Small local service businesses are tricky to work with. They’re often flaky, and penny pinching. At the moment I kiss a lot of frogs. I could automate and scale but that’s not been my style to date. It’s a case of switching gears though. What got me to here isn’t what will get me to there.



There’s lots of ways to do this. If it’s something you find interesting and you can get results then it’s a great stepping stone to take you in lots of different directions.

Get to €2k/mth, €5k/mth and upwards and then see what opportunities beckon, and that match your skills, personality, and passions.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Some more on this:

5-10 years ago I had dabbled with courses and forums but didn’t like it. It felt “guru” like.

In the intervening years things have changed a lot. Udemy, Skillshare, Lynda, and now Masterclass.com have made courses online so much more legit than the dodgy “Make Money Online” courses we only used to see.

My end goal is a lifestyle business. I don’t want to be at the beck and call of 100 clients or 1,000 paid forum members.

I’ve had 100 people buy my course in three years though, and the customer service requirements are minimal.

Having 10-15 higher paying consulting clients, and thousands of course students and/or paid email newsletter subscribers who don’t have one-to-one access to me could be a quicker way of me reaching my financial goals while maintaining the lifestyle I want.

I also blatantly have an itch I can’t scratch when it comes to helping people by answering questions, and by producing copious amounts of content.

If money was no object I’d still want to also grow lead gen businesses in various industries.
 

fmob007

New Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Jul 3, 2018
28
17
28
23
Mobile is super important now. So much so that we often have to design a mobile landing page for clients because their website doesn’t cut it. I don’t just mean that it’s “responsive”. I mean designed for mobile users: fast, simple to use, with tap-to-call buttons and simple form fills or chatbots/pseudo chatbots.
Hey Andy,

how do you cope with your landing pages running and maintenance costs? Do you charge your customers through your monthly fee or do you pay for it yourself?
Also, do you nowadays charge for the landing pages you design or provide it for free as a gesture of good will?

Thanks for this great thread!
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Hey Andy,

how do you cope with your landing pages running and maintenance costs? Do you charge your customers through your monthly fee or do you pay for it yourself?
Also, do you nowadays charge for the landing pages you design or provide it for free as a gesture of good will?

Thanks for this great thread!
Mostly I now include the page in the monthly Google Ads fee. This is if they’re not bespoke and are instead created from templates we’ve developed.

I don’t currently charge extra for a few reasons:

1) Without these pages we may lose them as a Google Ads client anyway because their current page doesn’t work well enough.

2) Getting into discussions with their web developers is way too time consuming. I’d rather we just did it.

3) I don’t even want to spend the time and effort trying to persuade clients why we should have a dedicated and fast landing page. I’d rather build it and show them a working version for us to fine tune copy with them.

4) I’d rather have all our clients using our pages so we stress test them and improve them faster.

5) It’s a nice selling point. “For $X/mth we can run your Google Ads campaigns for you, and provide a dedicated landing page if you need it.”


I see it as my Google Ads clients paying me to develop my own Unbounce or LeadPages tool.

We have one *customer* who is paying monthly for a couple of these pages while he runs his own Google Ads campaigns.
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
Pretty much as I expected, finding a client and securing a business relationship is the only PITA part of this business model.

Fair enough, it does take some knowledge and experience to structure an Adwords campaign properly, and also build a good landing page, which will be relevant to your keywords/ads combination, but clearly that's the easy part.

I've only come to this conclusion after failing to secure just 3 clients, but it was enough to make me switch from the naive thinking that everyone wants more customers and after giving out a few leads for free, you would have no problems "closing" a client.

Turns out I was wrong, because the first guy totally ignored me despite me trying to call multiple times, sending texts with a quick summary of what I do and the calls that I've referred completely free of charge. I couldn't believe it.

The second guy wasn't too excited, as from listening to his conversations with the leads that I sent him, he was more interested in big commercial work, rather than retail. This time I didn't even call - just sent a text, mentioning the calls I've referred, offered my help, but again no reply.

The third client actually replied to my text and asked about my "rates", which is not a good thing, if the cost is all they are interested in, but at least I had a reply, so that was definitely progress.

I gave him a simple breakdown of how it works, i.e. he pays the advertising cost + a monthly fee, and all the calls are totally his without any extra charges, but apparently he said he's too busy and can't take on more work now....Not sure if that was a polite way of telling me to piss off or he's genuinely busy.

Looks like I'll have to grow a thicker skin and make a LIST of potential clients that I'll need to go through, because I completely under-estimated this part of the equation. You would think that if you're sending more customers to a business free of charge, then they would be interested to at least hear what you've got to say, as a minimum, right? Or maybe not...

Any similar experiences, @Andy Black ? This is for blue-collar local tradesman, small teams, nothing fancy.
 
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Pretty much as I expected, finding a client and securing a business relationship is the only PITA part of this business model.

Fair enough, it does take some knowledge and experience to structure an Adwords campaign properly, and also build a good landing page, which will be relevant to your keywords/ads combination, but clearly that's the easy part.

I've only come to this conclusion after failing to secure just 3 clients, but it was enough to make me switch from the naive thinking that everyone wants more customers and after giving out a few leads for free, you would have no problems "closing" a client.

Turns out I was wrong, because the first guy totally ignored me despite me trying to call multiple times, sending texts with a quick summary of what I do and the calls that I've referred completely free of charge. I couldn't believe it.

The second guy wasn't too excited, as from listening to his conversations with the leads that I sent him, he was more interested in big commercial work, rather than retail. This time I didn't even call - just sent a text, mentioning the calls I've referred, offered my help, but again no reply.

The third client actually replied to my text and asked about my "rates", which is not a good thing, if the cost is all they are interested in, but at least I had a reply, so that was definitely progress.

I gave him a simple breakdown of how it works, i.e. he pays the advertising cost + a monthly fee, and all the calls are totally his without any extra charges, but apparently he said he's too busy and can't take on more work now....Not sure if that was a polite way of telling me to piss off or he's genuinely busy.

Looks like I'll have to grow a thicker skin and make a LIST of potential clients that I'll need to go through, because I completely under-estimated this part of the equation. You would think that if you're sending more customers to a business free of charge, then they would be interested to at least hear what you've got to say, as a minimum, right? Or maybe not...

Any similar experiences, @Andy Black ? This is for blue-collar local tradesman, small teams, nothing fancy.
"Sales is a screening process"
(Blaise Brosnan)

This is regardless of whether you're getting inbound leads (as I am) or you’re going outbound (ish) as you are.

You couldn't believe he doesn't want free leads? That's a great learning. Plenty of businesses owners are happy with the size of their business. Plenty are happy they've built a job for themselves - that they own. Nothing wrong with either right?

Then there's the businesses that are getting plenty of phone calls already and don't want any more.


One of my clients is a plumber who lives over the road from me (I can see his house from my front door). As he was agreeing to do a trial month with us he wagged his finger at me and went on a rant:

"I know you online guys. You think it's good to send me loads of phone calls. I don't want more phone calls. I don't want to get interrupted when I'm busy working, where they waste my time on the phone, and where I waste even more time going out to do a quote and they then never come back to me. I don't want "more phone calls". I just want more business, and what I want are new boiler installations. I don't want "Can you service my boiler?" - because their boiler is knackered and they're hoping that getting it serviced will fix it. They need a new boiler but are unwilling to pay for one. They want to limp along with their current one and I'm not going to touch it with a barge pole because if I do get it working then half the time something else will go wrong and I'll get called back and they'll expect me to fix that for free. Etc. Etc."

Me: (Wow... this is good to know. Got it. You don't want phone calls, you just want new boiler installations.)

...

I tried the inbound-outbound method (I'll have to trademark that) but didn't go deep into it because I get a steady trickle of inbound leads and I don't want more phone calls. (See the pattern?)

Here's what I tried and learned when I did do a bit of inbound-outbound though:

1) I ran a Google Ads campaign to a simple landing page where someone filled in a "Request a Callback" form.

2) I got a handful of leads overnight.

3) I rang each of them the next morning. Most of them had resolved the problem or found someone else. That's great... I'm delighted your washing machine is working again. (My main problem was I was working as a Google Ads contractor onsite in a big company at the time and could only make my calls on my lunch break or a sneaky toilet break. I knocked this exercise on the head after the first day.)

4) One of the people I rang did indeed have a washing machine she needed repaired. I got a bit of the back story, learned she'd only bought it a year ago, what the brand was, and what the best number and time would be to get someone to call her. She thanked me and went back to minding the kids I could hear in the background.

5) I Googled for "washing machine repairs <location>" and started ringing the businesses I could find and/or filling in the enquiry forms on their website. LOTS of people didn't answer the phone. LOTS of the enquiry forms didn't actually work! (WTF?!?!)

6) When I finally got hold of someone (after a LOT more enquiring than it should reasonably take) I asked "Hi, do you fix washing machines in <location>?" They said "No" and I hung up.

Hmmm... is that a No to "do you fix washing machines?" or a no to "do you fix washing machines in <location>"?

7) I learned for the next call though:

Me: "Hi, do you fix washing machines?"

Her: "Yes."

Me: "Great. Do you cover <location>?"

Her: "No."

Me: "Oh. I run the AdWords campaigns for my friend who does washing machine repairs in Dublin. We ended up getting an enquiry from a lady in <location> who has a one year old <brandname> washing machine that is <described the symptoms>. Do you know anyone who might be able to help her?

Her: "(Laughs). How did you get an enquiry for <location>? That's not in the UK!"

Me: "Yeah... I know (all innocent like)." (Hmm... she didn't bite about the AdWords part. Fair enough.)

Her: "Hold on. Let me dig out the names of some guys I know who serve that location. What was the brand of machine again?"

Me: (Wait as she rummages through her paperwork/phone/computer/whatever.)

Her: "Ah, here we are. Give Peter a ring on 111 1111 111. If you can't get hold of him then try John on 222 2222 222, or maybe David on 333 3333 333."

Me: "That's great. Thanks for your help!"

Her: "No worries. Hope that lady gets sorted."

Friendly byes. Nothing like the slamming down of the phone if I'd rung saying "I can get you more phone calls."

A short while later:

Me: "Hi Peter. Mary from ABC Plumbing said you fixed washing machines in <location>?"

Him: "That's right."

Me: "Great. We have an enquiry from a lady in <location> who's <brandname> washing machine is <described the symptoms>. Is that something you can help her with?"

Him: "Ah no, we don't deal with <brandname> washing machines. Maybe try Matthew on 444 4444 444."

.
.
.

Etc.


I eventually got someone to ring the lady, but when I rung the plumber back to "find out how you got on" he said the husband had got home and fixed the washing machine.

Cool. I let it at that as I thought I'd have more than enough toilet breaks that day.


So what was I learning?

Who's website worked, and who's didn't.

Who answered their damn phone.

Who was good on the phone.

Who was true to their word and actually rang the lady when they said they would.

Who let me know what happened when I rang them back.

Basically... the people who would actually convert any leads I sent them into ££ because they answered the damn phone, and followed up.



Here... I did a video discussing this a few years ago:

Ahh shit... I just realised my brother had passed away a day or two before this video and we didn't know yet.... :(

View: https://youtu.be/qshB9w5wOq4
 
Last edited:
OP
OP
Andy Black

Andy Black

Figuring it out as I go along!
Staff member
EPIC CONTRIBUTOR
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Speedway Pass
May 20, 2014
9,140
38,331
4,306
Ireland
Following on from the above:

I went into a local call center and spoke to the business owner. I told him my plan to generate phone calls of people looking for blacksmiths in Dublin.

Me: "This is what we do. We run ads on Google and generate phone calls or Request-a-Callbacks of people looking for blacksmiths in Dublin. Could you take those inbound calls and enquiries and ring around to find a blacksmith who will service that enquiry?"

Him: "Whoa!!! You want us to ring up blacksmiths with an actual lead and then follow up to see if how they got on and if they'd be interested in getting more? You've done all the hard work! I'd love to see how that would work. Dayum. We'll even do that for two weeks for free for you and I'll even man the phones to try and figure out what the scripts would be."

This is soooo much better than the two guys who came in last month with a copy of the yellow pages and wanted us to ring all the blacksmiths and ask them to signup to their empty blacksmiths directory. I told them we've tried that before and no-one wants to signup to a directory."
 

Blackman

Contributor
FASTLANE INSIDER
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Dec 28, 2018
53
59
115
London, UK
"Sales is a screening process"
(Blaise Brosnan)

This is regardless of whether you're getting inbound leads (as I am) or your going outbound (ish) as you are.

You couldn't believe he doesn't want free leads? That's a great learning. Plenty of businesses owners are happy with the size of their business. Plenty are happy they've built a job for themselves - that they own. Nothing wrong with either right?

Then there's the businesses that are getting plenty of phone calls already and don't want any more.
Thanks Andy, I remember watching one of your videos (possibly the one that you've posted above) where you mentioned that it's better to do some work upfront, make sure you can get traffic in that particular area for X business type, generate a lead and then get in touch with business owners offering your service.

This is exactly what I did prior to calling 3 of my potential clients as I explained above, but I think I was looking through this idea with rose-tinted glasses and completely ignoring the fact that, as you say, some business owners are just happy with whatever work volume they currently have and are not necessarily looking to grow...

After failing with my 4th potential client last week and spending £200+ on Google Ads, I decided to change my strategy slightly and make use of your saying of "helping people in motion".

What do I mean by that? So instead of just randomly looking up business owners who cover the area where my lead is in Google, I now look for businesses who not only cover the area that I need, but ALSO who advertise their business on Google Ads themselves.

That means that they are aware of Google's advertising platform and are willing to spend money on marketing, whether they do it themselves or through a marketing agency, but it's a clear indicator that they will be a lot more likely to make use of my leads, rather than someone who is not advertising on Google.

You might argue that what's the point of using my service, when they are currently doing the same thing, but I guess it would depend on what kind of results they are getting, because a poorly set up Adwords campaign can cost tons of money without generating any relevant leads...

And the second thing I'm planning to do is to contact business owners by posting personalised letters, sending to their company address, instead of calling/texting or emailing. I think the latter methods are heavily over-used, but possibly for a good reason....So I guess, I'll have to try my method and see how it goes.

I think a phone call is too spontaneous to introduce yourself, explain how the process works and offer your service, while a text is a bit too informal/non-professional, and an email could end up in their junk folder or these guys receive so many emails that yours could simply get ignored.

A letter will definitely make you stand out, especially with a hand-written address, a personalised message specifically geared towards that business owner, and of course a list of the calls that you've referred to that business prior to sending the letter.

1. Generate leads/calls for the business owner
2. Send a letter introducing yourself and asking for how did it go
3. Then email/call and secure the client

This is all theory at the moment, but I'm interested to find out how it will go.
 

Create an account or login to comment

You must be a member in order to leave a comment

Create account

Create an account on our community. It's easy!

Log in

Already have an account? Log in here.

Sponsored Offers

  • Sticky
MARKETPLACE Lex DeVille's - Advanced Freelance Udemy Courses!
Just Enrolled to "Start a Freelance Business: Take back your freedom Now" Thanks! @Lex...
  • Sticky
MARKETPLACE You Are One Call Away From Living Your Dream Life - LightHouse’s Accountability Program ⚡
Welcome to 2020, I wanted to add in a quick note about gratitude for the new year...


Don't like ads? Remove them while supporting the forum. Subscribe to become an INSIDER.

The 2020 Fastlane Summit

This event SOLD OUT in October. For authorized resale tickets, please check ticket resales or contact the forum directly.

Fastlane Insiders

View the forum AD FREE.
Private, unindexed content
Detailed process/execution threads
Monthly conference calls with doers
Ideas needing execution, more!

Join Fastlane Insiders.

Top Bottom