I was just driving toward a meeting with a potential new client when I realized I could share this with my FB SEOs. Once I started forming what I would actually write about I lost track of thought and missed the meeting point by freaking 4 blocks but got the deal done nonetheless.
So what is this mysterious offline tactic I would like to share?
Workshops! More precisely Local LIVE (in person) SEO workshops!
I am just a few hours away from speaking at my 10th (something in that area) workshop about SEO. It is not actually organized by me (it could have been), but I just get paid to speak about SEO for about 3 hours.
Usually there are about 10-15 people at a time, that just paid the organizers (who sets it all up, runs ads/promotions, does the content marketing leading up to it…) a fair fee in return for some basic (with some real cool nuggets as well) SEO knowledge that they can implement instantly to their own sites or the sites of the companies they work for.
How does that relate to getting clients?
We all know how overwhelming SEO can be if you are just starting out. Sure the basics are more or less simple. But once you get into the nitty-gritty of building backlinks, outreach, setting up pbns etc. I almost always get the exact same response: “Who in the right mind is going to do all that? I have other things to take care of like X, Y, Z…”
So as a rule of thumb around 2-3 out of the 10-15 attendees get in touch with me sooner or later. Some walk up to me at the end of the workshop and we start talking business right there and then or setup a firm time/date for a meeting.
I have already prequalified myself in their eyes as an authority. First of all via content marketing done by the promoter as well as dropping bombs and adding serious value (not just fluff n puff) at the workshop itself. I always do a 50% 50% split between theory and live rankings and case studies.
If you are going this route make sure to get the attendees websites in advance so you can show them right there and then what`s wrong with their sites and how they can fix it. I found the latter to be extremely efficient cause they can relate to it.
What if no one approaches you? Do you follow up?
I do. But not in a spammy “Hey remember me…you need me..blahblah” way. During the workshop we take a look at Ahrefs for better explaining backlinks and live links pointing to their sites. I offer to send them all individual reports of their backlinks and their top 3 competitors backlinks. Sure they all say SURE and I get their emails.
That’s how you get the ball rolling and dismiss any gatekeepers or doubts.
Does this work? Did you get any clients out of it?
In the 3 years I`ve been doing this I got many clients (10-15+) alongside many referrals out of it. You never know who will be in the “audience”. I got a director of marketing from the 2nd largest bank in the whole country come up to me on the spot and a few days later I was at their office along with another 6 or 7 directors of sth. That’s a 3.5 billion $ company right there. I won`t lie, but the deal didn`t go through cause they wanted a “big agency” with “many employees” etc. Old school mentality, but I licked my wounds and keep on tracking their rankings every day (automatically) and in 18 months not much has happened. So I might as well nudge them every once in a while to see, if they are ready for real gains 😀
So that’s it for me. I hope you can either start your own workshops (can be totally free as well) or partner up with someone doing meetups or internet marketing events/workshops on a local level. The ROI is there for sure.
Hope this helps and that some of you got a new tool for client acquisition to add to the arsenal 😉
Wish you all the best,