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Posted by: Jennifer Woodard | on August 6, 2012
You hear it all the time, make millions on the internet. You see the ads for products that tell you can make easy money on the internet. Generate thousands of leads.
All you have to do is throw up a website, just sit back and wait for the leads and money to roll in.
Sounds too good to be true.
That’s because it is. Don’t be dumb. The only people making money that easily on the internet are the people selling products that are supposed to tell you how to easily make money on the internet for the rest of us it takes hard work.
The truth is, generating leads and making money on the internet is not easy, but it is doable. It takes hard work and time, but is well worth the investment if done consistently.
Before you run off… let me tell you again. You can generate leads and gain clients using the internet. You just have to put in some work.
Begin with an idea of whom you are trying to sell too. Who is the one person that would be ideal for your services?
You can create more than one ideal client profile, just don’t create too many. The goal is to narrow down who you are trying to reach and speak directly to them.
Who is Your Ideal Client?
Begin by understanding who your ideal clients are. Look at your current customers. How much do you know about them? Think about the clients that you working with. Why do you enjoy working with these clients?
Let’s break down the process of creating an ideal profile.
- Create a list of your ideal clients. Only include clients that you truly find ideal to work with.
- For each client write town all the things that makes them ideal. Include only truly ideal qualities.
- Create a list of qualities that are most common among your ideal clients.
- Go back to each individual client profile and write the clients profession, job title, business volume, personal affiliations, trade magazines they read and personal details.
- Look for the most common professions, titles, business volume, personal affiliations, etc.
- Take this information and create your ideal client profile.
- If you don’t have enough information about your ideal clients, get on the phone, ask them some questions and fill in what you don’t already know. You just might be surprised at what you find out.
Let’s say you are a professional business coach. You have gathered all the information for creating your ideal client profile and your information looks like this:
Ideal Client Profile
Male, age 45
Married, 3 kids
Mid-level Executive – looking to make it into c-level management (This is the problem you help them solve).
Wants to become recognized as a leader and pioneer in their field. (This is how you help them).
Working in the financial services industry for ten years
Member of professional industry associations
Income is $110,000, looking to move above $150,000 a year.
Has a master’s degree.
Once you have developed your ideal client profile, you are now in the position to target others who meet your ideal client’s profile.
Going Where Your Ideal Clients Hang-out
Now it is time to find ways to stand out to your ideal clients that you are targeting.
Develop a list of places your clients hang out on the internet. What forums do they participate? What associations do they belong? What trade magazines do they read? What blogs do they read?
Once you know where they hang out, it is time to become know to them and show them that you understand their problems and can help them.
Thirteen Ways to get in Front of Your Ideal Clients
- Write Articles – Get articles placed in newsletters and trade magazines that your ideal clients read.
- Forums – Answer questions posted on forums, write articles and start discussions.
- Freebies – Create a free report, white paper, tip sheet, eBook for members of your ideal clients profile to receive when they sign up for your newsletter.
- Blog Posts – Offer to write guest posts on the blogs that your ideal clients read and create your own blog.
- Press Releases – Create eClasses, new services, special reports, eBooks, white papers and submit press releases to the places where your ideal clients hang out. Submit your press releases to trade magazines, online magazines, associations and blogs.
- Speaking Engagements – Offer to speak or give workshops to local chapters of the associations that your ideal clients attend.
- Networking – Attend networking events where your ideal clients network, volunteer to serve on committees to become known by members.
- Advertising – Place ads on websites, blogs, trade magazines, radio and other places where your ideal clients frequent.
- Radio – Get interviewed on radio shows that your ideal clients listen or host your own internet radio show.
- Referrals – Ask your ideal clients to refer others to your business and let them know what type of clients that you are looking for.
- Podcasts/Videos– Create podcasts and/or videos answering questions frequently asked by prospects.
- Slideshare – Create slideshare presentations for your prospects to view on topics that are of interest to them. Answer questions that they have or breakdown seminars that you have given into several short slideshare presentation.
- Webinars – Create live or on-demand webinars for prospects to view. If you create, live webinars don’t forget to give attendees an opportunity to ask questions.
When looking to reach your ideal clients remember that it is not about you it is about them. Make sure that you are addressing their needs and concerns.
Figure out where to reach prospects online:
Now you have a profile of you ideal client and you know something about them. Now it is time to locate the places online where they hang out. Go to the social networks they use and get involved. Join the online groups that they join. Get published in the magazines that they read. Be everywhere your prospects are.
Have a Goal in Mind
Once you have decided on who your ideal clients are. Have a goal on how many new clients you are trying obtain. How many prospects do you need to reach in order to gain one client?
Let’s continue with the professional coach example. You know that for every 25 prospects that hat inquire about your services five are good leads. Of those five leads, one becomes a client and you want to add two new clients every month. Then you know that you need a minimum of 50 prospects to and 10 solid leads to gain two new clients every month.
But, how many visitors to your website or blog do you need in order to gain 50 inquires. This is where you need to spend a little time monitoring your website traffic.
You have your inbound marketing plan in place and you are implementing the tactics that you have chosen.
- Blog (posting 3 times a week)
- Monthly newsletter
- Monthly Video (Short 15 minutes or less each)
- Semiannual webinar
- A free report
- Bi-monthly press releases
- Quarterly slideshare presentation
- Lead nurturing email program
Measure Your Progress against Your Goals
After you begin your inbound marketing program, you create a spreadsheet of your daily traffic and contacts or inquires made concerning your services.
You do this for six months and notice that when you average 4000 new visits per month, you get about 80 new newsletter subscribers. Of the 80 new newsletter subscribers, you get two new clients within 30 days.
This gives you a measurement of how many new visits you need to gain at least two new clients each month.
Listen up; This is What You Really Need to Do
You need to give inbound marketing time to work. You need to apply the KISS principle and monitor your progress. Start out with a manageable goal and list of tactics to implement. When you are comfortable then add something else to the mix.
Oh yeah, and don’t forget to promote the hell out of your content.
Share your content on all the networking sites that you have signed up for, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Stumbledupon, and Digg. Don’t forget to ask everyone to share your content. Get it out in front of your potential customer’s and keep showing up.
Hell if you have to create a comic book, run around in your underwear, do whatever it takes to get your content noticed and to keep readers coming back for more.
Have you developed your ideal client profile?
How do you go about generating quality leads?
What I want you to do next:
Leave a comment on my Blog, like me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, join my LinkedIn group Marketing and PR for Professional Service Firms and sign up for my NEWSLETTER