SEO specialists and SEO sales corporations are constantly looking for that big ticket that will keep them occupied, and well paid, for months or years to come.
Large corporations know that they need a web presence and therefore, they are looking for individuals and companies that can provide this service for them. The problem is that you must convince them that you are the right person for the job, which can be incredibly painstaking if you do not go about it the right way.
Luckily, all you need to do is follow a few steps to get yourself on the right path and your foot in the door and the rest will begin falling into place very quickly.
Market selection involves choosing to sell to companies that can use your services and that have money to pay your fees. Since various corporations have different internal budgets and different marketing needs, there are varying markets for your services. You must also be aware of mistakes that companies have made in the past regarding their SEO project hires, since this can scare them away from your services. This is not your fault, but sometimes you have to pay for the mistakes that others have made.
Much of this information might not be available upfront, so you will have to do some research. Look at the company’s online presence to determine if there is room for growth. Look at how much the company spends on advertising to determine if it can afford your services. All of this must be done before making your initial approach, otherwise the effort that you put into the following steps will be a waste of your time and resources.
Identifying Decision Makers
Every company that you approach will have decision makers and those without any power, so it is important that you find yourself in a position to interact with those that make the decisions. Unfortunately, those that make the decisions are not the most accessible people within a company. They do not want people like you and SEO sales corporations constantly bombarding them with business proposals, which is why they do not make their direct contact information known.
Luckily, you can identify these people through the company’s website and begin researching them. You can find out who is in charge of marketing and, if applicable, who is in charge of the company’s web division. Having this information is vital because you will know who to ask for when you call the company or send them a letter.
In cases where you are dealing with a smaller company, such as a doctor or lawyer’s office, the entire process might run directly through the individual. While this might seem easier, people who are running their own practices are usually much busier than those who are only running a department of a corporation and, therefore, setting up a meeting might be more difficult. You’ll have show them quickly how you can add value, and not waste their time.
Speaking with the Gatekeeper
Once you know whom you must contact, you can call the office. The person that you need to speak with will never answer the phone, however, as he or she will have a receptionist to handle these duties (sometimes you can reach them after hours or on weekends, if you’re lucky). If you do not have an appointment, you might find it difficult to get through to the decision maker. Luckily, using the right language can help you to get by the gatekeeper to speak with the right person.
When the receptionist answers the phone, do not ask if you can speak with the person, but rather tell the receptionist that you are calling to speak with the person. For example, if the marketing director’s name is Todd Wilson, say, “My name is John Smith and I am calling to speak with Todd Wilson” is much more effective than saying, “My name is John Smith. Can I speak with Todd Wilson?” (there are many more tips about how to get around the gatekeeper)
You do not want to give the gatekeeper the option of saying, “No” because he or she will take the opportunity nine times out of ten. By telling the gatekeeper that you are calling to speak with that person, he or she is more likely to believe that the call is expecting. Asking if someone is available makes the call sound unwanted and, therefore, less likely to be passed along.
The tone of your voice is also very important when getting through to your target. If you sound confident, as if it is a foregone conclusion that you will be speaking with Todd Wilson in a matter of minutes, the receptionist is much more likely to put you through to him. If you sound nervous and unsure of yourself, the gatekeeper will be unsure of you as well. Don’t be weird about this, act naturally.
Once you manage to get through to the decision maker, you can try to set up a meeting. Meeting in person is the best way to get things done before there is too much room for error or confusion when speaking on the phone. Things can easily be misinterpreted when you are not face to face with the individual, so it is always recommended that you meet.
Before the meeting, make sure that you are well prepared for anything that arises. Since you want to be an SEO professional, you should be well-versed in what can make a website grow (technical aspects, traffic, conversion and metrics to business goals). You will be faced with a number of different questions and you must have an answer for each of them. The decision maker is not likely to hand thousands of dollars over to someone who cannot answer basic, or sometimes even complicated, questions – so – do yourself a service by making sure that you are ready. (this is a foregone conclusion – you are a professional, right?)
Remember, however, that you are the expert and this is your room. This entire meeting is about establishing your credibility, but you must create a personal connection to do so. Begin with an interesting introduction to your presentation, as this will get your audience hooked on what you have to say. Do not be afraid to inject some humor into your presentation, as this keeps the audience light and entertained. You do not have to perform like a Hollywood superstar, but you do have to convince your audience that your services are worth thousands of dollars and that they will make money for the company in the long run. In fact, a combination of education, inspiration and process can work very well for you.
If the company chooses you to handle its SEO, you will have to design or sign a contract that outlines the services that you must provide and the payment that you will receive. This contract acts as a legal document, so if you do not provide the services outlines or the client does not come through on the payment, it can be used in legal proceedings. SEO sales corporations will likely have a contract for you to use, if that is the route that you take. You can search online for sample contracts as well.
Make sure that the contract is written up in a manner that benefits both parties. For example, it is basically impossible for you to guarantee the search engine results that you can attain. While you can promise to make tweaks if the results are not there, it is not wise to promise first page Google rankings and have it put into the contract, since that can be difficult to attain. Make the terms realistic or you could end up doing this work for free. And, don’t make these a legal hurdle for you by having page-after-page of legal mumbo-jumbo. A 4-5 page agreement with an addendum of scope of work is fine.
High Quality Work
This should go without saying, but always do high quality work for these companies, since it could lead to additional opportunities in the future. If Todd Smith is impressed with the job you have done for his company, he is likely to recommend you to his colleagues in the future. The SEO world is always changing as well, so by doing a good job right now, there is a good chance that the company will bring you back when Google changes its algorithms again. As SEO sales corporations have learned, there is always more work in this industry because of how quickly the landscape changes.
Becoming a valuable, specialized company should be your end goal, as you want those who use your services to come back time after time. While the price might seem steep to these people at first, they should see results from your efforts very quickly. Once you have a proven record of accomplishment, it becomes much easier to find new clients.
Big ticket SEO sales are not always easy to find, but they are well worth it because getting the first one can quickly turn SEO into a full time career. And, if you can show them how to make $2.00 for every $1.00 spent, you are ahead of the game!