One of the main goals for my business is to create a passive income stream that I can use to support myself and the growth of my business. Like most people I like the idea of waking up at the beginning of a month and knowing that I’ll be earning money even if I chose to do nothing for the next 30 days.
This is the dream many of you might share with me. However the reality is often further from the ‘truths’ sold to you in the countless ‘make money online’ eBooks and online courses that litter the internet.
This blog entry is all about one of the ways that I approach offline companies to promote myself as an online marketing consultant.
The truth is that building a stable, Penguin / Panda proof and scalable income online takes a lot of time. To me quick fixes and ‘systems’ are just big shiny objects that don’t stand the test of time. “So what?” you might be asking. Well if you’ve made the decision to work full time on your internet marketing business this means that cash flow, at least for the first year, will be pretty low.
So is there a work around for this?
Fortunately many of the skills you need when building your own niche websites can be applied and used on other people’s businesses. The majority of small business owners all own websites and they all want to use it to make them more money. Applying your SEO, WordPress, content writing, design and other internet marketing skills to these businesses is a great way to bring in some extra money while your own passive income streams mature.
Offline marketing clients are client you source via traditional ‘non-internet marketing’ methods.
You might remember from some of my other posts that I run monthly networking groups. I first started this as a way to grow my own business network and in under 10 months my group membership has grown from zero to over 250. For this group I organise a monthly speed networking session which attracts over 50 attendees as well as a networking breakfast for other local businesses in my local area (I love this one since as the organiser I got to choose a venue and selected one that is only 100m from my front door).
I’ve always made my networking events about the attendees and don’t use them as a self-promotional tool. I believe my attendees get the most value from the event when I make it about them and in turn they are more eager to reciprocate my goodwill.
I have picked up most of my commercial offline work from these events so it makes sense to try and maximise the value that I receive from them while still trying to avoid turning them into a complete self-promotion soapbox. I was thinking about this recently and decided the best approach would be to refine my ‘networking event’ sales process with the view to use attendees as my ‘Step One’ (lead generation) which then flows into a fully structured sales approach.
Question: Do you want to see a set of posts that outline this exact offline sales process? Let me know by leaving a comment at the end of this post.
‘Step Two’ in this sales process is to send out a flyer outlining my services two days after the event. This A4 flyer is signed by hand, tri-folded and then sent out in a standard envelope with a hand written address to all attendees. There has been a lot of discussion on the internet about open rates using hand written addresses and most agree that open rates improve by 300% when you write addresses manually.
You will also notice that I include a way to measure the response rate of this flyer by way of a free email marketing setup. It’s key to have a way to track the success of any marketing campaign so that you can calculate a return on investment. For this campaign my cost to produce and send 100 flyers is $90, which includes professional digital printing, postage and stationary. Say I then went on to make $180 from these flyers I would be able to calculate that my ROI as 100%. Now ideally I want a much higher return than this as I have to also account for the time I spend putting the envelopes together etc. However in my opinion 100% is the minimum ROI you should always aim for.
After this I load my new prospects into my CRM system and follow up with a phone call a full week later. Follow up calls after being an organiser of a networking event and then having sent through a physical flyer are easy. The best bit is that it’s not cold calling!
So far it’s too soon to report back on the success of this process. I will come back and report on it’s success (or failure) in a future post so subscribe to my blog to be updated for when I write this.
Over to you
This sort of process is great for those of you looking to promote your online marketing businesses to new ‘offline clients’. The good news is that it’s not just limited to internet marketing shops as any other type of business can easily setup a networking event and then promote to attendees in the same way you promote to any other list.
What do you think about a multifaceted approach to promoting your business like this? Could you see yourself running a networking event (which by the way is very easy) or would you like me to write about any particular details for you? Let me know by leaving a comment.