In part one, I delved into what I see as the primary reasons why resellers tend to fail – when they fail. I ended on the number one reason I see resellers failing, a complete lack of a plan, and, more precisely, a complete lack of any marketing plan or focus. Marketing is a complex subject; there are numerous methodologies, venues, and strategies. Skill and ability certainly play a crucial role in marketing and sales; however, it is essential to note that in this industry in particular, upwards of 99% of sales of services made are made by the untrained, but also by those possessing little or no sales ability. But too small or no general human charisma or aptitude – stereotypical anti-social geeks comprise the lion’s share of those making the sales! – I know because, for much of my early career, I was one of them.
The other thing that must be said is the fact that marketing venues exist all around you. Many people fall into the psychological trap of thinking that the only marketing venues worth pursuing are tech-driven, i.e., SEO, PPC, or big-budget digital advertising of one kind or another – this is nonsense. The venues I propose do not have steep financial walls to scale or are scarce or limited.
Central to everything is planning itself, which many people are not gifted with being able to do quickly. Many people who begin to plan try to itemize plans like they are writing a grocery list and fail to recognize that in real-world planning, linearity seldom, if ever, is a good thing. I am a firm believer that plans need to be spelled out. Still, I’m also realistic in that plans adapt and change all the time, and therefore a marketing plan should be viewed more like a fluid and dynamic course of actions to be taken rather than assembly plans that need to be precisely followed.
Get Local & Get Logical
Most white label resellers I meet think that to be successful, they need to reach out to the world and capture leads far and wide; the logic they are operating under is that the world is more populated than their town, and therefore more leads will mean more sales. This logic is simple but fatally flawed. To understand why you need first to realize that most sales of digital marketing services, by a WIDE margin. The reasons for this are many, starting with the foundational principle that if our industry could be consolidated around a single nationwide mega-corporation, it would have happened already. Our industry is a lot like that of other skilled trades requiring a hands-on application to be successful – i.e., electricians, plumbers, carpenters, etc.
The other primary reason most sales are local is because of a generalized lack of trust in throwing large sums of money at a remote company doing something highly personal; it doesn’t make a lot of sense from most clients’ perspectives.
This makes marketing most white label digital marketing services a whole lot easier. Some resellers tense up and exhibit anxiety at the thought of local marketing; to them, the idea may seem radical, especially if they come from a corporate background – but they need to get over this fear of change. The fact is that our type’s business is transacted at a local level most of the time.
Local marketing has many types of venues, trade shows, home shows, local partnerships with other business types, local networking events, and even online marketing. There are many ways to tap into the local market, which require a degree of creativity and out-of-box thinking.
Home Shows & Trade shows
Utilizing local home shows and trade shows to drum up business is pretty simple – show up. All you have to do to market yourself using these venues is to attend and casually chat with business owners at their booths. They are often bored and happy to speak with another entrepreneur. Make sure you have business cards on hand to hand out to those you meet – simple.
A great way to garner success at the local level is through networking and partnerships with local businesses. Many businesses local to your area come into contact with potential prospects as a part of their everyday business and (for a price) will be more than happy to offer you a referral. Networking at the local level can start at home shows and trade shows, or it can begin through knocking on doors, passing out business cards, or attending local business events. Whatever method or medium you use, it’s essential to keep an open mind and recognize that the value you bring to the table is derived from being hands-on; this is one area where you have a massive advantage.
It may seem old-fashioned, but knocking doors and passing out your business card can be a very effective means of drumming up local business. The fact is, very few digital advertising businesses will ever bother to knock on the door of a company and introduce themselves. The fact that you are willing to go to this length to get business puts you into a category that few competitors will ever enter, significantly increasing your chances of closing.
Local Online Advertising
Many of those in your geographic location seeking to have websites built, SEO campaigns run, or other white label digital services are doing local searches. Researchers agree that local advertising is trending upwards. This means it’s more than worth spending some extra time conducting some basic marketing of your business to your local area. Make sure your business has a Google My Business account set up. Make sure you have Facebook squared away, make sure you have your LinkedIn business page, submit your business to as many directories as possible. In short, make sure your stuff is set up correctly for local.
The best market you have as a new white label reseller is the one right in front of you, the local market. If you take your time to reach out and network, attend events, knock on some doors, and set your business up right online, you stand a great chance of success. It doesn’t have to be complex or challenging to set yourself up, and it doesn’t have to happen in a day either.
Founding a successful agency means putting in the work necessary to build a permanent client base. While many markets themselves nationally or globally and succeed, for the vast majority, their future is local.