If you are building a business to service other clients online, you need to know how to position yourself so that they can a) find you, and b) see your offers and understand what you do easily.
If you are just starting out with your service business, you are likely to find your first opportunities right in your local market place.
Communications is at the heart of e-commerce and community.
– Meg Whitman
Stop by Starbucks, grab a coffee or hot chocolate, and drive around your neighborhood. Here are some likely businesses you’ll see:
Which businesses here are likely in need of your service?
- Insurance agents
- Real estate agents
- Local restaurants and delis
- Small retail shops
- General contractors
- Hair dressers
- Family Doctors
This is just a small list. But, by providing these business owners with blogs and websites, they can grow their business. However, your goal is going to be to convince them to work with you.
How will you do that?
Passion for your craft.
First of all, you are an experienced service provider with a passion for your craft. This will be clear to them when they speak with you. Therefore, your goal should be to connect with them either face to face or on the phone. Make sure you know their marketing budget before spending too much time. (I once went on a 1/2 day trip to
Hollywood because the potential client indicated he had a $50,000 budget (6 months). Turned out, he was just using that number as a test of a payment structure!).
You must create lead campaigns so that they will connect with you somehow, and it may be calling directly. However, many don’t like the “cold-calling” approach, and you’ll have to dial a lot of calls. I recommend a paid campaign to start.
- For the services you provide, you can easily charge customers between $1000 and $6000 per month. You rates can increase as your experience does, and as the results dictate. Different price ranges for different markets. A florist will not pay the high numbers, but an attorney will.
- There are likely to be 10 to 100’s of businesses in your local area and in the region.
- For each business, you probably need to invest about 2-5 hours per week in providing their service. And, at the beginning of the campaign, a little more time.
How many of those businesses do you need under your belt to turn a profit?
Your only likely expenses will be things such as web hosting costs and the costs of pay per click marketing. You can even work right from home in your pj’s if you would like to.
As you can see, even if there were one or two other people who were providing the service you are, the good news is that there is still plenty of businesses in your local area to work with. You only need a few clients to make a substantial income from home on a regular basis and you only need to work on an hour (or less) per day for each one.
What’s more, every single business can benefit from having a website and promoting it like this. Every single business in your local area could be a potential customer. Avoid those large businesses that have professional marketing firms handling their business marketing and often will not work with individuals. It is also a good idea to focus on businesses that you have some understanding of. That just makes the process easier manage.
As the only or one of the few people in your local area that is providing these services, you can be picky about who you decide to work with providing this service. For example, you might not want to work in some industries because you do not have a lot of working knowledge in those sectors. You may want to avoid doctors, for example, because you do not want to worry about the legal traps of providing medical advice without a license to do so.
Consider the following qualifications that companies should have to work with you:
1. The company needs to be operational already.
If they do not have an operational business yet, or any longer, it can be hard to get customers in the door, obviously. It is going to take longer to help jumpstart a new business, too, which can mean more work on your hands.
2. Look for a business that is willing to work with you.
Rather than trying to convince businesses that your service is the answer to their prayers, remind them of this. Then, move on. Do not waste your time with a company that does not have any willingness to get online.
3. Avoid those businesses that have their own ideas about marketing.
While some of these businesses can work out, they need to realize that you are a business, too. Avoid contracts that lock you in to spending a specific amount of time with a company each day. You need to be free to move where the social media takes you.
4. Avoid exclusive contracts.
It can be nice at first to think that a company really wants to work with just you. However, if the company locks you into a contract where you are only providing service to them that will minimize your return. You need to be able to work with multiple companies.
5. Look for a business that is willing to give you the reins and let you lose.
You do need to work with a company that will have one person who is your go to person. That way, you have one person you can consistently rely on for information, input and even payment!
Lastly, erase from your mind your concerns about not having the experience to do this job. The fact is, you do. As long as you take the time to learn, and constantly apply steps from that education, live tests, and you keep learning about them as they change, you will be able to train businesses to create this type of success for themselves online.
You can get help for the writing, the web design and the blog creation. However, you do have the skill to do every other aspect of this business on your own. Having an honest, sincere, open discussion with these businesses will show them that you want to deliver great value from day one. You are not trying to “sell” them anything (they sell themselves).
- Local Business Listing Optimization Becomes Important For All Businesses (searchenginejournal.com)
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- 5 Lessons for Brick and Mortar Small Businesses from a Website Perspective: Is Your Store Readable? (smallbizbee.com)
- See Home Repair Sample Contract (abcnews.go.com)