In part 5 of The Ultimate Guide to Building an SEO Agency, Joe discusses the all-important mechanism that converts prospects into customers, as well as strategies to double your average customer value that will make all the difference for your agency.
Turning Cold Prospects into a Sale
Having an Exit Strategy
The Math to Get a Sale
Helping Your Customer Get to Where They Want to Go Faster
Getting Customers See the ROI
Offering a Risk Reversal
Joe Troyer 1:03
The next step is your demo or your offer. And what I mean by this is you can also say consult or strategy session, and these things to me, guys are all the same thing. It's just what's the mechanism that you have, and that you use, that's a process of taking somebody from, from from warm, or cold, and turning them into a sale. And way too many people in the agency space, take their business for granted, and are simply operating out of like, I'll take any job that gets referred to me. And they're being lazy with their marketing, right, whatever falls in their lap, they'll take. And ultimately, I think that if you're in that position, short term, it might be okay. But long term, you are really, really losing so much money, it's not even funny. And what I mean by that is if you're always doing one off jobs, even if you do the same fulfillment, but it's one off meaning different verticals, it's gonna be very hard to have a 75% plus margin, unless you're paying yourself to do the work like $5. And out, because every time let's say you're doing SEO, every time you got keyword research to do every time you got all the city research to do every time you got to figure out what topics to write about. Every time you have to figure it out for the first time. Stop fucking doing it. Like, please, for the love of God. Like that is the most horrible, awful work ever, that you get no return from. And so unless you're okay with paying yourself $3 an hour, like knock, get the hell off, like stand up for yourself and accept better, like demand better stay in your frickin lane, right? And focus on on having a system, right a tactic a strategy to take people from cold to turn them to warm and to get them to buy. If you do that, and just stay in your lane, in terms of what it is that you're offering and who you serve, you will have a business that has a great profit margin. Okay. And not only that, but you will have a business that one day that you can actually sell and step away from or step away from, versus you just have to run this thing forever. Guys, you should be scared of having to run a business forever. You should be scared. Like, what is the exit strategy? I'll tell you that for all the baby boomers that are looking at getting out of a lot of businesses right now. And even the generation before them that are getting out of businesses right now. What are their options, they don't have ship for options. A lot of them are trying to sell their businesses right now. And I'll tell you what's happening. Jack's happening. They're getting robbed, their businesses are being taken from them for pennies on the dollar. Because they're there. They're next to Kin their kids don't want their business and they haven't ran their business like a business. They've treated it like a hobby. And so it's worth quite literally pennies on the dollar. So for me guys, this this scares the shit out of me. I don't I want to have an exit. I gotta be able to get out some day some time. And I gotta be moving towards that and building towards that. And if you're not, I just I'm gonna smack you and make you think about it. Like, do you really want to be doing this forever? When I was just in Ohio, I stopped in saw this sign shop and I was talking to this sign shop. And they got the same problem. Right? They got kids, the kids don't want to take over the business. It's got a daughter, daughter or daughter or son, daughter or son doesn't want to take over the business. It's a it's a great business. But the guy that runs it is the owner operator and nothing happens without him. Like he's involved like he's got employees and such but the business wouldn't run Without businesses worth like nothing because of it. So, for me again, guy, sorry for the tangent, but a business is a list of systems and processes. And the only way that I believe it's a business and not just a hobby, right is if it can run without you step away for a week, step away for two weeks, right, and you should come back in the business is stronger than when you left. Alright, so in this demo slash offer, slash console, their strategy session in this mechanism, what we want to do, again, is be able to take somebody from cold and talk to them about a promise,
Joe Troyer 5:36
or a result, okay, or from a foot in the door into this mechanism, right, this is the mechanism that converts prospects. So we have two different angles to get people into this to sell them. Without this a sale doesn't happen, right. So we either have the foot in the door, okay, or we have basically direct pitch to a strategy session, or a console, right direct pitch into that call guy, or by offering a foot in the door, those are the only two ways that these things happen, okay. And this process, no matter if you got it from pitching it directly, like head on, or you got it from running a foot in the door offer, this should be 95%, the same. And again, it needs to be something that is predictable, and that is proven to take customers from being cold or warm to a close. And if you're doing a good job, folks, I would guess that 75 Based on my experience, and from helping people implement this as well, that 75% of your sales are going to come from one call closes, either that or you're doing it wrong. So this is a metric that you should be looking at. Okay, and you should be closing, I believe, should be closing roughly one in four to one in five of your prospects. So anywhere from 2020 to 25% of the people that you bring into this call. And again, I don't care what you want to call it, it's going to depend upon how you set this call up, it can be a demo, it can be an offer, it can be a console, it could be a strategy session, I understand that you can change the lingo can be an action plan, okay, but you should be converting anywhere from 20% to 25%. Okay, that should be the metrics that you're looking for. It may not start there. Okay. But that's kind of the threshold that you should be looking for. Okay, so this becomes really simple, folks, there's been a lot of experts that have talked about, you don't really have a business, Intel, you can pay X amount of dollars, okay, to get a sale. And so really what we want to do long term, and what we should be thinking about strategically, is how much money or how much time does it take to get somebody either on a foot in the door product, or on directly on a strategy session? And then based upon that, how many people do we need to stick through this funnel, right to get a sale out the other side? So if it's one in five, right, then we need five. So if it takes 10 bucks, right to get somebody on a strategy session, it's going to cost 50 bucks to get a sale. Okay, I can tell you guys in more high ticket, more mainstream type of services, people are paying anywhere from 100 to 500 bucks to get a paid Strategy Session, right? So let's break that down. If they're paying at the high end, $500. And folks, that's a lot in my businesses, I've never paid anywhere near fucking $500 Most of the time, I've broken even on the front end, or I've made money. Okay, but let's think this through, if you spend the 500 bucks to get a prospect to either be on a foot in the door call or a strategy session call, and it takes five of those to get a deal that then is worth $2,000 a month, you are trading. You're trading $2,500 for $2,000 a month. So the only question should become how many of these do you want each and every month?
Joe Troyer 9:29
And trust me when I say you have a really big fucking problem, if you can't make that math work, or you aren't willing to go in the hole for one month and can't finance that. At the end of the day, I think I want to give you guys a couple of takeaways. On your demo your offer your strategy session is you got to you got to understand that the goal of that that call is to take for somebody from where they're at now to where they want to go. And we all have to understand that along the way to get from where they are now to where they want to go. Right, or their goal is that there's lots of things that they have to do understand that all that you're saying is that I can help you get there faster, I can accelerate this, I've been there, I've done that. Okay, if if you can say that right, then then do that. Your goal is to show them that you're the gap, you can solve going from here to there and doing it better and faster than they can, at the end of the day, way too many people that I speak with, and I look at their decks, I look at their pitches, simply not doing that. They're not showing them that there's a void, that they have to do more than they're doing right now, to get to where they're trying to go. If you don't tell a prospect or show a prospect that there's a gap that they have to fill to hit their goal, right, that they got five more things, they got 10 More things that they need to hit and to hit Well, in order for them to hit their goal and position yourself in the middle there to help them achieve that. I don't even know why you're getting on these calls. So if you're selling SEO, the easy way to do that is to really talk about average customer value. Right? And to back out the system. Right? How many customers then do you need? Okay, then how many phone calls do you need, or webform, submits do you need, and then obviously, we want to talk to them, or show them that that's possible and how they can get there, and the time that it's going to take to get there. Now we could do that by simply showing them case studies, we could do that by showing them the search volume, for example. But the better that you can demonstrate this, the better. A big piece, as well that I see people not implementing is you got to back out the example ROI. So when you do this, and you back this all out, that's great. And you're getting the customer to see it. But you need to think of this as an investment because marketing is an investment. Okay, so what's this investment going to yield folks, at the end of the day, there is no better investment than local SEO and local advertising in terms of Google and Google search. Like there's not as long as you can simply get them results. Okay, so make sure that you break this down as an investment. Okay, because they're making money in their business, otherwise, you shouldn't be fucking talking to them. And they're doing something personally to invest in themselves, why the hell Shouldn't they be investing in their business. And you should be making this case. And you should be talking about the return on investment from SEO and from what you're doing versus everything else. And compare it to stocks and bonds, compare it to your 401k shet, compare it to real estate, compare it to any other vehicle that they want to compare it to, and you should be the undoubtable champ, or you need to go pick another frickin product to sell, you should be able to without a doubt, say that in X amount of months, right? The investment pays for itself. I've listened to so many sales calls, people talking with pay per click prospects, SEO prospects pay per call prospects, and they simply can't answer the question, right? How long do I have to front this investment before it starts paying for itself? Like that is the most basic question ever. Be prepared, right. And then ultimately, folks, at the end of the day, you should be looking at how you can offer any type of risk reversal.
Joe Troyer 13:53
And risk reversal comes in a lot of different ways this could be a guarantee. This could simply be with SEO, like people want to see results and that you're not going to stand around with with your with your, with your hands under your butt not doing shit and getting paid, right. Everybody's been burned in all of these industries that we're targeting. So what do we want to do? We want to pull them in on a deal that makes sense to them. Okay, so if you're doing SEO, for example, the big issue that you're going to have is it's going to take a good 60 to 90 days to really show somebody what it is that you can do to kind of prove yourself you're under the gun, but it also doesn't take a year. Okay, so what I've done an SEO to kind of close that gap and to help reverse the risk. I'm not saying that you need like a money back guarantee. That's not it, right, but just help them reverse the risk and pencil out this deal. They know that they need SEO. So what I've done in the past is I've given them a 90 day out. So I've done a 12 month contract and That 12 month contract auto renews every year to unless they cancel, right, so I get them thinking long term. But in my pitch for SEO, it's simple Look, Mr. Customer, I know you need to see results. And I know that you've probably been burned before. And you've probably paid somebody for months and months and months or years and years, and you've never seen shit in terms of a return on investment for traffic and what they did. So here's what I'm gonna do. And here's how I'm going to be different than everybody else. My contract works like this, I really need 90 days to prove to you what I can do, and to put my money where my mouth is. So when you sign this contract today, what's going to happen is you're going to sign this 12 month contract and it renews every year. I need to know I got somebody long term, as long as I can show you mister business owner, that this is going to pay for itself long term. Fair enough. Yep. Fair enough. So I need an hour or you need an hour. I understand if I don't do my job. Is that fair? Yes, that's fair. So here's what we're gonna do between day 75 And days 90. In our agreement, you have the opportunity to cancel, I call this a 90 day out. So if you're not happy with my results in 90 days, if I haven't shown you that things are improving, and we are on the way to getting a return on investment, then I fully expect you to cancel. We mitigate the risk. Guys, this took me from going month to month in my deals, right? month to month and having problems collecting payment in my first agency, right to me getting people signing a 12 month contract that renews every year. Right unless they cancel guys cancellations are slim. Right took me from getting paid very inconsistently to 90% of the people that I brought into this deal sticking around for at least a year. Think about that for a second at $2,000 a month, that goes from my average customer value probably being let's say, let's say 10 to $12,000 to be at least $24,000. I'm more than doubled my average customer value. So again, be creative when it comes to the guarantee. And when it comes to kind of the risk reversal. It doesn't mean that you have to say like if you sign on the dotted line and I don't make you a million dollars in the next 30 days, I'll refund all your money no like screw that are a double money back guarantee. No, you don't need to do that. They will just think about risk reversal. Okay, think about how you can cut the risk from your prospects mind.