If you run a service business and you need to generate more leads for that business, then listen up. Over the last few years I’ve seen over 1,600 businesses looking to hire a marketing provider to help them grow their business. Yes, I generate leads for others, professionally.
Over the last few years I have learned a TON about lead generation. I’ve done many things right, I’ve done many things wrong, and I’ve learned a process that works well for me and my business.
And, I believe it can work well for your services business as well.
So how do you do it?
You need three things
- Something of value that people want.
- Traffic to your website
- A way to convert them that doesn’t turn them off or scare them away
If you’re running a successful business but haven’t ever invested in SEO, you probably do not know where to start or how to determine what SEO could do for your business. Your friends have told you that it could do big things for your business, but you need harder numbers than that before you know what or even how to invest.
We’re now offering done-for-you SEO opportunity analyses on Credo to help people just like you. Learn more here.
Duplicate content. SEOs the world over talk about duplicate content and how it can hurt your website’s rankings in the search engines, but they always conveniently never define what duplicate content actually is.
Because of this, there is a wealth of misunderstanding around the topic. Similar to fresh content and “content marketing”, there are all sorts of people out there (maybe you are one of them!) doing crazy things because you think it will “help your SEO”.
Getting your website listed in the search engines is the very first step to building a business online. Maybe you’re a seasoned entrepreneur starting a new business but haven’t invested online before, or maybe you’re a seasoned business owner looking to take an existing business to the next level.
If you’re like the 54% of businesses who don’t have a budget for SEO, then you need to take it into your own hands and at least get started so you can justify the investment in the future. Because after all, 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine (source).
So how do you get your website listed?
When businesses hire agencies, they do so usually because their growth is not going in the right direction or it has slowed measurably.
Agencies and consultants are like dentists – brought in when something is wrong. Sure, you have the people (I’ve recently become one of these) who are very good at scheduling their regular cleanings and proactively floss and brush twice a day and switch out their toothbrush once a quarter, but those are the exception.
Most people go to see a dentist because they broke a tooth or they have a painful tooth. They also put it off because they know that the solution to feel better is a) going to physically hurt most likely because they need dental work done, b) they’ll have to take some time off work to get that work done, and c) it will likely be expensive.
Something I hear from marketers and agencies frequently is “we’re not ready to join Credo yet because we’re still working on our (sales process/lead generation)”.
This is a completely valid concern.
If you’re a marketing provider (agency or consultant) and your sales process isn’t working to close work, then being listed in the Credo network isn’t going to do you much good. When you get leads you will struggle to close them, and it will be much harder to see a return on your investment by joining the network.
Well my friends, today I have some great news for those of you in this situation.
The SEO world is ripe with advice and people giving you “weird tricks” to help you rank higher on Google. Unfortunately, for the non-SEO professional this can be incredibly overwhelming and oftentimes quite counter-productive to actually ranking higher!
So what’s a person to do?
Did you know that it is possible to make phone numbers clickable on mobile so that your site’s mobile visitors can click to call instead of filling out a form? It’s possible through a simple tel: link command!
As we live in an increasingly mobile world where mobile traffic is now dominant in many verticals, we as marketers need to adjust how we allow people to get in contact with our businesses.
Image via StatCounter
One way to do this is by making it easier for potential clients/customers to contact you directly via phone instead of filling out a form.
As a B2B business, your business lives and dies based on the leads you are getting. You need leads coming in so that you can put them through your sales cycle and turn them into clients.
You’re probably inundated, as a B2B marketer, by people offering you “leads” as well. They’re saying something like 1,000 leads for $200. In reality what you’ll get is a list of email addresses and first names that they scraped from LinkedIn.
So how do we level up our game and drive both more and better B2B leads?
First we need to define what a “lead” is in B2B, then we can talk about how to get more of them.
If you’re reading this, you’ve likely already read how to drive traffic to your website. Hopefully you’ve taken a few of those and implemented them with your business, and thus seen your traffic go up. Remember, you don’t get an outcome without output.
If you’ve implemented some of the ideas in that post and seen success, I’d love to hear from you – email@example.com.
Now that you have more potential customers coming to your website, you probably are trying to figure out how to turn more of them into business as well.
Because remember, the goal of more traffic is to get more business. More traffic alone doesn’t solve business problems, but if you can convert it into revenue then you can solve a lot of your business’s problems.
The best way to learn something is to study those who are the best in the world at their craft. Experts in other areas can teach us broader principles that we can take and apply to our own lives and work.
Warren Buffett is the best in the world at investing. Not only has he become amazingly wealthy through it, but his principles have helped many others succeed as well.
Buffett’s investment strategy is simple, and we can learn a lot from it for marketing our companies.
For a long time, people have asked me to help them hire full time people. Whether a full time SEO, PPC specialist, or director of marketing, hiring full time people is hard.
Also for a long time I’ve told people that Credo is not a full time recruiting service. We are still not a recruiting service, but today as of today Credo has a brand new Digital Marketing Jobs Board for full-time and part-time marketing jobs.
There is such a need out there to hire good marketers and Inbound has shut down (along with their job board), so there is a gap in the market that Credo can fill.
Do you want to grow your business? Most entrepreneurs and marketers would say that they do. While there are those who are happy with where their business is, or who are afraid to grow it, most people started a business to grow it.
But growth is hard. There are always more things to do than can be done and figuring out what to put your time, money, and effort into can be the hardest part. As they say, the hardest part to anything is getting started.
Instead of giving platitudes, in this article I am going to give you 12 actionable things you can do over the coming months to grow your business.
Over the last few years, Google has undeniably made a lot of changes to their search results pages (SERPs). If you work in SEO you can probably point out hundreds of small changes, and if you’re just a marketer or an average Joe then you’ve probably felt like “something” is different.
As someone who looks at “consultant” and “agency” search results a lot, as they are a main driver of Credo’s business, I’ve noticed some alarming changes over the last year or so that make me wonder if Google is heading in the right direction in my specific vertical.
My hope is that Google is still trying to do what is best for their users. While they removed “do no evil” from their Code of Conduct in mid May 2018, I have to hope that they are still trying to make the world better instead of just feeding their own beast of a publicly traded company.
Whether you’re working for a small business or publisher, what you’re often looking for is a sustainable source in growing their business or traffic.
Blogging is well-known and with content being channel agnostic, it’s important to change your approach based on the changing trends and platforms that serve your audiences. So with this, it’s worth noting the fact that social sharing has declined by 50% in the past 3 years and that Google’s dominance in driving referral traffic to the sites continues to grow.
Regardless of these changes, what can we do to demonstrate a brand’s strong sense of purpose and recognition in their topic expertise?
Develop content pillars.
Over the last few years we’ve seen 1,500+ businesses and $14M+ in digital marketing spend come through Credo.
In that time, I’ve learned a lot.
One big lesson I have learned is that many businesses have no idea how to explain what they are looking to accomplish by engaging with an agency/consultant.
If you’re doing SEO, then you probably know about Screaming Frog. Screaming Frog has long been the gold standard in website crawling for most sites.
But what happens when Screaming Frog isn’t enough for you any more? Are there alternatives to Screaming Frog that you should know about that may suit your needs better?
Absolutely, and that’s what I will cover today.
If you have ever worked in SEO or tried to get SEO done internally at your company, you know that the challenges are plentiful.
Maybe your head of engineering doesn’t value SEO and thinks all marketers are annoying. Maybe your head of product thinks that all they need to do is build a product that people love more and that’ll grow it. Maybe your executives have had a bad experience and are reluctant to invest any money.
The challenges differ based on where the company, but at the end of the day even when all of the stars align it still feels like pulling teeth to get any reasonable amount of budget.
Why does paid search get huge budgets while SEO teams struggle to get any decent budget?
Generic SEO services are dead. If you sell generic “SEO services” as well as “web design services”, “social media services”, and other generic terms that say nothing about what you actually do, then you will soon be out of business. Or, you will continue the client churn and burn with high acquisition costs for low budget clients who want to pay nothing and get everything.
And this is your own fault because of how you have positioned yourself.
If you’re looking to dominate the search results for your most important keywords (combination of traffic and profitability as gauged by CPC), then one of the most high-impact activities you can undertake is a complete competitor audit.
You might have a good idea who your main business competitors are, but do you have a good idea who your search results competitors are? And from there, do you know how they are outranking you?
Even if you are not a professional SEO, you can conduct a competitor audit using my favorite tool SEMrush. After you do this audit, you will understand where your gaps (and strengths are) so that you can put together a clear plan for overtaking them in the search results and dominating your niche.
PS there are also many agencies on Credo who can do this for you if you do not have the time to do it. You can start that process here.
Let’s get started. And if you haven’t done it yet, get a 7 day free trial at SEMrush.