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How Smart Consultants are Cashing In By Adding Business Funding To Their Arsenal

Business funding is the same idea as a traditional small business loan.

Since the last recession about 10 years ago, banks just don’t like to take the risks on small business loans like they used to.

If you try to get a small business loan you’ll have about a 20% success rate from your bank.

Most small businesses have no idea where to turn when it comes to getting a loan for their business.

This is where you come in…

I’m sure you’ve heard it before, you know the story, “I’m sorry, but I can’t afford your services because I simply cannot invest that much into my digital marketing.”

Now if you were to help that business secure funding not only would you earn a commission from the lender, but you could also then land them as a client and have them pay you what you deserve to provide digital marketing services for them.

It’s a win-win proposition!

In fact if you look at it like this you’re actually double-dipping.  You’re getting that commission from the lender and getting paid by the business to help them grow.

How sweet is that?

The best part to all of this is there’s exactly no risk to you.

And you don’t need to be licensed or anything like that to refer businesses to these non-bank lenders.

Oh and did I mention that about 8 out of 10 businesses who apply get approved?

Yep you read that right, nearly 80% of businesses get approved by these non-bank lenders.

That’s huge!

That means you just need to find potential leads who are willing to take on a loan to improve their business.

In case you’re wondering there’s nothing unethical or shady about this.

Anyone can do this!

So why not take advantage of this and offer it to local businesses you know and want to help?

You’re probably wondering who these non-bank lenders are…

Offline consultant Mike Paul has just put out a new digital product called Local Freelance Funding Formula.

In his course he outlines exactly what you need to know to be successful using this weapon in your arsenal.

Business funding will always be necessary and has been around for years.

This is not some fly by night idea.

Once you pick up Mike’s training, please leave me a comment below and let me know how this service has helped you be more successful.

 

How to Handle Reputation Management Services

When working with offline clients often they are in need of cleaning up the negative reviews left by disgruntled clients/customers or sometimes it’s from former employees.

Whatever the case may be it’s spells bad news for the business in question.

So how do you remedy a ton negative reviews?

For one you need to find out what commonalities all of the negative reviews.

Once you can pinpoint it to one particular issue, you need to address it with the business owner to see if it’s something that will be a continuing to rear it’s ugly head or it’s something has already been resolved.

At that point a great way to improve reviews is to capture the negative reviews before they’re made public and posted to Google My Business, Yelp, or anywhere else where they will affect the business.

You must keep in mind that no matter how well a business is run and the quality of the products or service they provide are, there’s always a naysayer.

One of the best ways to help a business build back up it’s reputation is to have it’s clients/customers leave 4 and 5 star reviews to help offset the 1 and 2 star reviews.

But how?

Well one way to do it is to have a method in place that allows everyone to post their honest reviews where any reviews posted with less than 3 stars can be immediately sent directly over to the business owner where they can then reach out to the client/customer and remedy the situation in hopes of that person re-reviewing the business and if the resolution is positive will then lead them to post a 4 or 5 star review.

Of course any 4 and 5 star reviews would be posted to the business website and on sites like Google My Business, Yelp, etc.

Obviously this is a lot easier said than done.

That is until now…

My good friend Neil Macpherson just released a product called WP Review Machine and it gives you all the necessary tools to pull this off without a hitch.

Without going into too much detail in this post, I will just say that it solves all the problems I outlined above and makes offering reputation management services a breeze.

I’d love to hear what you’re doing and how you’re currently handling your client’s online reputation by leaving a comment below.

Best Times to Post on Social Media Networks

The best times to post on social media is when your audience is online.

However there are better times than others that may work best for your business(es) or your clients.

Each social network is different, thus they each have different times which work best.

For example the best time to post to Instagram is different than the best time to post to Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest…

In this post I will break down the best specific times to post to your social media accounts.

First let’s look at the time zones…

If your brand is mostly U.S. consumers then you’ll want to focus your efforts on the EST zone.

However if your target audience is mostly in Europe you may want to consider the GMT zone.

If you’re not sure what will be best for your brand you can always use social media analytics to find data to where your audience is primarily located.

This will allow you to best plan out which times to make your posts.

Second let’s look at each social network and the best times to post on each…

Instagram – Best times: 11am – 1pm and 7pm – 9pm, Best days: Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Note that Sunday is the worst day to post on Instagram, but 5pm is the best time on Sunday.  Wednesdays get the highest level of engagement on Instagram.

Facebook – Best times: 1pm – 4pm, Best days: Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Note that Tuesday is the worst day to post on Facebook.  Weekends get the highest level of engagement on Facebook.

Twitter – Best times: 12pm – 1pm, Best days: Monday – Friday.

Note that Wednesday is the best day to post on Twitter.  Weekends are the worst days to post on Twitter.

LinkedIn – Best times: 10am – 11am, Best days: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

Note that weekends and after work hours tend to be the worst times to post on LinkedIn.

Pinterest – Best times: 8pm – 11pm, Best days:  Saturdays and Sundays.

Note work hours tend to be less popular for Pinterest users.

YouTube – Best times: 12pm – 4pm, Best days: Thursdays and Fridays.

Note that most viewers tend to watch more on the weekends.  Post on Saturdays and Sundays at 9am – 11am.

The times and days listed above are just averages and your own audiences may be more active at completely different times and days.

It’s best to experiment and use your social media analytics to figure out what’s most effective to your business(es) or your clients.

What days and times for different social networks work best for you?

 

How to Start A Successful Offline Agency

Offline Agency is just another term for Digital Marketing Agency or what some of us IMer’s refer to as Offline Marketing.

Typically when we refer to the term “Offline” we’re talking about local businesses who need digital marketing.

If you decide to venture into this line of business the key to success really comes down to two primary things.

First focus on just one service and do it extremely well instead of offering all kinds of services.

Second you must keep your sales funnel full of prospective clients.

Never settle.  Never be content.  Always be hustlin’!

If you do both of these you will most likely be able to build a sustainable and scaleable income.

One of the benefits to specializing in just one primary service is that once you dial in exactly the steps or process you do to achieve the desired results you can easily train others to do the tasks.

Thus your business becomes repeatable and scalable.

A great service to offer is Facebook ad management, but more specifically re-targeting ads.

For one they’re super easy to setup and secondly they convert extremely well so you’re client will get results.

And the more results your client gets, the happier they are to keep paying you to provide the service.

But how do you get enough clients to ensure you’re not struggling to make ends meet?

I highly suggest reading my blog post, “How to Get People Looking For Your Services Directly Into Your Inbox”.

The Cliff Notes version of that article is the use of a website called IFTTT.com and Craigslist.org.

And by no means is that the be all or end all of getting clients.

No sir (or madam)!

However it’s a great way to get started.

Do you see how simple it can be to start your own Offline Agency?

I’ve given you two very simple ideas now it’s up to you to take action and get started.

Please leave a comment below and let me know how this works out for you.

 

 

How to Use Video to Efficiently Train and Get the Most Out of Your Employee or Virtual Assistant

When you own and operate a small business whatever it may be you usually are a jack of all trades so to speak and do everything yourself.

Don’t get me wrong, doing everything yourself definitely has it’s benefits such as you know the quality of your own work and can decide if or when it gets done.

Of course the down side is that you only have so much time in the day and eventually you just don’t have enough time to get everything done.

That’s when you need to hire someone or someones to take some of the work load off your shoulders.

Usually when you’re a small business you can only afford so much for an employee’s salary and that’s where a Virtual Assistant comes into play.

You can usually outsource the work you need them to do and get someone from the Philippines or India for pennies on the dollar through a site like UpWork.com or OnlineJobs.ph.

I can personally attest to having success hiring a VA from the Philippines and it cost me next to nothing which is the best part.

But sometimes it’s hard to get the most bang for your buck so to speak.

It’s relatively easy to find and hire someone, but it’s not always easy to convey the work that needs to be done.

One way I found to make this as efficient as possible and to ensure your VA is busy doing their work and you’re getting what you’ve paid for is by creating training videos which may sound difficult or time consuming but really are not.

In fact the best way to do it is get yourself an account with Screencast-O-Matic and use it to record your screen.

First and foremost create yourself a quick list of activities you need your VA to do.

Once you have that list the next time you need to do that task yourself simply turn on the screen recording software (Screencast-O-Matic) and just talk over what you’re doing while you’re doing it.

That way you’re killing two birds with one stone by completing a task that needs to get done anyway, but now you have also created a training video (in real time) that can be used over and over again for all of your employees.

These training videos do not have to be perfect by any means.  They definitely don’t need an intro or an outro and most likely will not require any video editing whatsoever.

This will ensure your VA or employee knows exactly what to do and how long it will take to complete the work you want them to get done.

By the way, this works for Virtual Assistants or regular employees.

So how will you use training videos to make your work more efficient?

How to Growth Hack Your Way to Recurring Revenue

I’m about to give you maybe the most valuable piece of content you’ll read all year.

No joke!

Pick a niche, any niche and let’s roll!

In a nutshell, you’ll be creating an irresistible front-end offer utilizing the free plus ship model to drive leads and sales.

Once the traffic hits your front-end offer they will be presented with a “bump” offer to add a monthly newsletter for just $4.99/mo.

If they take it with your initial front-end offer then you’ve killed two birds with one stone which is as good as it gets.

If they don’t take it with your front-end offer then they’ll be represented with it again as an up-sell on the very next page in your sales funnel.

If they pass on it at that point you will follow-up through emails that are highly focused on the features and benefits of your monthly newsletter and will hopefully capture them as subscribers down the road.

The trick to this entire process is being able to find the perfect front-end offer that converts well enough to either break even on the amount of money you’re paying to drive traffic to your sales funnel or of course to make a profit.

The key here is to find a product that fits your niche to a “T” for as low a cost as possible.

This usually achieved best by looking for your product at AliExpress.com.

Once you find your super sweet and totally irresistible front-end offer you’re now in business.

Don’t worry about creating your first monthly newsletter until you’ve found a high converting front-end offer and until someone or someones have actually signed-up for the monthly newsletter.

When both of these criteria are met, then you can focus your efforts on developing the first issue of your newsletter.

Now your newsletter does not have to be 100% unique.

There’s no need to create all the content yourself or from scratch to make this worth the $4.99/mo.

But rather curate the content to A) make your work easier and B) give people exactly what they want.

This newsletter should contain 5-10 topics in the niche that’s of some sort of value to the reader.

The newsletter will usually be about 2-3 pages in length and should have a nice professional look and feel to it in PDF format.

The retention rate on this type of subscription model is so high due to the fact that the price point is so low.

It’s just like your Netflix subscription of $7.99, now $9.99, where you don’t think twice about cancelling it ever if you never use it.

Also by providing a low monthly fee, the barrier to entry is reduced to almost no barrier since it’s so ridiculously reasonable.

Another trick of the trade to retain subscribers is tease upcoming content and/or to offer free products or giveaways once a month to your subscriber base.

Once you get this sales funnel dialed in it can easily make you more and more money each month as you’ll be adding more and more subscribers to your newsletter than you’ll be losing.

This is truly a sustainable online business model that doesn’t require a lot of work and can give you the laptop lifestyle you maybe seeking.

So will you be using this monthly newsletter business model to diversify your income stream?

How to Land Clients Using Dead Simple Foot in the Door Strategies

Foot in the door strategies are easier than you think.

The best way to land clients is to build trust and there’s no better way to do it than to create an irresistible offer that they cannot refuse (and if they do they’re bat sh*t CRAZY!).

Now there’s several ways to go about this, in fact I create a product a few years ago called Offline Marketing Evolved CAM (Client Acquisition Method) and it was centered around offering a PLR (private label rights) book that was roughly 175 pages in length or so that was completely generically written for a specific niche i.e. chiropractors, dentists, real estate agents, etc.

I would basically take a few minutes to brand the book on the potential clients behalf so that they could see what it would look like with their picture on the cover and their name as the author.

I then would use a print on demand service and drop off a physical copy at their office.

This tactic would all most always get me an opportunity to sit down with the client and talk about all the things I could do to help them out with their digital marketing needs.

Like I previously mentioned there are several ways to skin a cat so to speak…

Recently a Digital Marketer by the name of Lee Cole just put out a product to make it brain dead simple to offer writing press releases for potential clients.

You can checkout my review of his product entitled Press Release Empire at my digital product review site.

Whether either of those options tickle your fancy or not…Not to worry there’s plenty of other great foot in the door strategies to offer.

Another great idea is to offer a super simple and scalable service such as offering to post content on a potential client’s Facebook fan page.

Once you have content created for once niche you can easily rinse and repeat with the only work you need to do is schedule out the page posts.

OK, ok you twisted my arm and I’ll give you one more strategy…

Last, but certainly not least you could offer to write up monthly newsletters for a potential client.

Again this is a completely scaleable service because you write 12 newsletters in one niche you can offer it over and over again to as many potential clients in that niche as you can find.

These last two ideas are great because you can charge as little as $99 per month to provide each of them so it makes it a no-brainer for the client to say yes while providing the business with a ton of value that they could never get anywhere else for that little bit of money.

Are we doing all of this just to make $99 per month per client?

Absolutely and unequivocally NO.

What we’re trying to do here is build trust while providing value so your potential clients can get to know, like and trust you.

Once they know, like and trust you can you easily up-sell them on other services you provide and turn them into a $1000 or even a $1500 per month client.

Obviously this is this just the tip of the iceberg and you can think of many, many more ways to provide some sort of offer/service that can land you a client.

Please let me know what foot in the door strategies you’re using to land clients in the comments below.

Chatbots: What They Are and Why You Need Them

It’s all the craze these days in digital marketing…

What is it???

Chatbots!

In case you don’t know what a chatbot is it’s more or less an automated system that allows you communicate with people on Facebook Messenger.

There’s many new companies which have recently popped up in the market such as ManyChat.com, MiniChat.com, ChatKit.com, etc.

If you’re on any of the lists of the following marketers then you’ve already been exposed to chatbots: Dr. Ben Akins, Shawn Anderson, Anthony Morrison, Alex Becker, Ryan Deiss (DigitalMarketer.com), etc.

And I’m sure there’s hundreds if not thousands more that are using them.

It seems every marketer is getting in the game and for good reason.

The open rates and click through rates are much, much higher than traditional means like email marketing.

Now does that mean they’re giving up on email marketing?

Absolutely not!

But why not give yourself a chance to reach out to your audience through other means?

It can only help get your message out.

And at the end of the day that’s the only thing that matters.

So should you also start using one of those services I listed above?

Absolutely!

Why not also partake in the fun and help yourself or your clients better reach the intended audiences.

Now the question is which of those services to use…

From my own experiences it seems the service of choice has been ManyChat.com.

So unless one of the other ones tickle your fancy, I suggest going with the crowd as there must be a good reason that they have all chosen ManyChat.com.

But I advise you do your research and pick the service which is best for you and your business needs.

I will soon be utilizing chatbots and I’m likely going to also go with ManyChat.com.

If you have any experience already with chatbots, please leave a comment and let me know what you’ve used and what you think of it.

How to Get People Looking For Your Services Directly Into Your Inbox

Last week I talked about how to successfully start a Social Media Marketing Agency.

Today I want to take that concept a bit further and cover how you can use a free service to have hot leads looking for the service(s) you provide delivered directly into your inbox.

In case you’re not already aware, there’s a service called IFTTT.com (If this then that).

Like I mentioned earlier IFTTT is a completely free service for creating what they named “recipes”.

These recipes allow you to create many, many different tasks.

Honestly the potential for what you can do with IFTTT is practically endless.

I don’t want to get into to many details about the possibilities, but I do want to cover one particular recipe that I use day in and day out to consistently find new clients for my Social Media Marketing Agency.

The recipe I speak of is very simple.

You select classifieds for “this.”  Then click on “New post from search” button.

Head over to Craigslist.org and click on “jobs” and type in “social media” (in quotes) and click search.

Now click in the URL and copy the entire URL and paste it into the “Search results URL” and click “Create trigger” button at IFTTT.com.

Next click on “that” and select “Gmail” square and on the next page click on “Send an email” button.

Enter your “to address” of where you want to receive your updates and click on the “Create action” button.

I recommend you rename it like “[City] Social Media (jobs)”, replace [City] with the city you are in or are targeting.

Then go back to Craigslist.org and select “gigs” from the dropdown box.

Once the page refreshes click on the URL and copy it again then go back to IFTTT.com and repeat the process above, but this time label your recipe “[City] Social Media (jobs)”.

Rinse and repeat for the next location.

I currently have the top 40 cities in America setup like this and my inbox is flooded with alerts everytime someone posts a new post on Craigslist.org with the keyword “social media”.

Granted you will get a fair share of email alerts with posts from Craigslist that are complete garbage and have absolutely no relevance to the service(s) you provide.

Unfortunately people like to include the keyword “social media” in listings where the job or gig has virtually nothing to do with social media.

I promise if you do this with 40 cities or more you inbox will constantly be full of potential clients looking for what you have to offer.

So go set this up now and then come back here and leave a comment with how well it’s worked out for you. 🙂

 

How to Launch a Successful Social Media Marketing Agency

Today I’m going to talk about how to launch a successful social media marketing agency.

If you’re new or a veteran to running your own marketing agency you’ll want to take some notes as the information I’m about to share here can help you be more successful in your business.

A great way to get started is by hyper focusing your business on offering just one or two services that give potential clients two things: customers and/or profits.

Often times businesses offer too many services which presents a problem when trying to scale.

Let’s say you’re a jack of all trades, but when it comes to hiring additional help you now need to find someone that possesses all the exact same skills you have in order to be able to work with all the clients you don’t have time for.

This presents a couple problems…

First it’s almost impossible to find the right talent that can replace you.

Secondly, in all likelihood you’ll have to pay a premium for them to come to work for you which may not be in your budget and even if it is you’ll be sacrificing additional revenues to pay a higher salary, which in turn cuts your profits.

A better solution is to keep things simple and dialed in.

Offer one service like Facebook Retargeting Ads and then screen record all the steps you take to deliver the service to a client and use it as a training tool that can be used over and over again to train new hires.

And now instead of having to pay high salary to one individual you can higher just about any competent individual at a much lower pay grade who can apply what they learned from your training video(s).

Oh and by the way this should go without saying, but by staying highly focused on one service and delivering results will help you retain clients for the long haul.

You’re probably asking yourself, “That sounds great but how do you get clients when you’re brand new to the business?”

Great question!

Go to job sites like Indeed.com, Monster.com, Craigslist.org and search for job titles like “Social Media Manager” or “Social Media Coordinator.”

These are prime for the picking!  They’re already raising their hands and saying they need someone to help with their social media marketing.

This is the perfect way to kick start your business.

You’ll just have to refine your pitch to convince them that using your business is the best option for them to achieve the results they desire.

Hopefully this blog post has given you a few tips that will help you launch your social media marketing business and be more successful with it.

Please leave a comment below and let me know how things go in your business.

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