Biz Buzz #108 – Land of Oz

Something has come up lately which needs to be addressed.  Everyone knows that the web is a wonderful place to make money.  A website business can be started with a few hundred dollars and some dedicated effort.  Many people have changed their lives because of their website businesses.  They’ve turned their entire financial picture around, and became able to fire the 9-5 grind to work for themselves.  Still millions of web newbees have poured money into “turnkey guru systems” which never panned out.   Do you want to know what I think defines the winners from the losers?


People who change their lives through the internet take action every single day.  They’ve made a decision to fire their boss and kill their television set.  They spend nights and weekends developing a network through social tools like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.  They created a network with local business professionals.  They have a solid website marketing plan.

They take the time to learn SEO techniques and build website links.  The watch what happens at Google and check the marketing analytic in Google or the Cpanel of their website daily.

So you might be wondering why I picked a reference to The Wizard of Oz to discuss fantasies of website ownership.

Well – the first part of the movie is Black and White.  Which is the impression newbee businesses, and website owners share about the web.  They think if they build a site – people will come and buy.  Then something happens (in the movie it’s a twister) when the web owner wakes up they realize nothing has happened.  They’re lost in a foreign land – their website is lost in the slew of millions of other sites.

So they want to get to OZ because the wizard is going to give them their hearts desire.  They reach out to the guru clan.  Nothing frustrates a consultant more than a client who doesn’t want to learn and participate.  As someone said – you can lead thousands of people, but you can’t carry a person on your back.

Now you might be wondering are consultants wizards or just snake oil salesmen?  I like to think consultants as the good witch.  We watch over Dorthy and her friends.  We help gently guide our clients in the right direction to get their hearts desire.  Still there are others who want to take money and run.

So what’s a budding entrepreneur to do?  These web owners need to have a single focused goal.  In the movie it was getting their hearts desire.  What is your hearts desire for your website business?  Making sales, building a list, etc.  Make your action plan count – what can we help you do with your website?

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Biz Blog #107 – Why is information so important?

Fact for today – 80% of your clients still live and work 15 miles from your door.

Back in the stone age (also know as pre-internet) -  The library held the knowledge – they had card decks – and “gasp” books. You needed to trudge down there and check out the books to do research.

This was the original social network.  When you wanted the local “scoop” about what was going on in your neighborhood – you called your friends from your home.   Mom’s got together, people shared information at hair dressers, clubs and dinners.

People wrote letters, sent birthday cards, and invitations by mail. Banking was done at your local branch, not by an ATM or home computer.

Businesses marketed by the Yellow Page listing, and ads in the local newspaper.  You had a big bright sign outside your business, and used business cards.  A larger company might advertise on radio or TV.  Some savvy marketing people caught onto direct marketing mailers.  This created the val-pac industry of sending coupons directly to a mailbox.   Print was the only ways to get information to the buying public.

Today, the internet has taken the same concepts but put them on hyper-drive. Need business – claim your places pages – create a website – get a magic jack VoIP service and optimize to reach your customer. Need information check Wikipedia, Yahoo Answers or “Google it” to get your answer. Read a hardcover or paperback book – bah – take out your smartphone or e-reader. Want to find out about a new restaurant, salon, or any type of services.  Log into Yelp,, or hundreds of other sites. People critique in real time. Right from the smart phone, or their computers.

Today seems to be a fragmented world, and SEO is the key to unlock the internet.  A client needs to get more than a website – they need to be on the top of a Google search.

So where does this leave a business on the web – information sharing is key to unlocking great SEO on the web.  When you offer valuable information – to real people – you can win the internet game.

An optimized website leaves a breadcrumb trail.  Google is the mouse you want to lure your site.   Links, tags and keywords show Google that your site is the best place on the web.  Smart website owners know that it take five to seven visits to get people to move from research to purchase.  They teach and tease the public with information.  They capture their visitors contact information to develop a house list.

Today internet marketing is all about information -

So ask yourself, how are you capturing information?  What kind of cliff hangers are you putting in your pitch to keep your marketplace hungry for more…

DIY marketing is a challenge because you have to keep adding value to your website.  You can add value through blogs, links, articles, press releases, and videos.

SEO you soon


Biz Buzz #105 – Struggling??

We get asked this question often – why is my website struggling (invisible, not working, not getting leads, etc…)

Long and short answer is your website is driving them to your competitor.

Here’s the bottom line truth about the web – there are 7 billion people in the world (and about as many websites).  During any day there maybe 100 people on the web looking for your product, services or information.  Statistics say the first time they visit your site, unless they’re in a crisis, they’re looking for information.  So now you can say 10 of those people stay longer than a minute scanning your site.

What are they looking for?  Your contact information, social proof that you’re not a fly-by-night knucklehead, an answer to their problem, a product you sell, the geographic area you service.  They’re lurking on the web and judging you by your online brochure.

What are they finding?  9 out of 10 business websites don’t offer information which grabs the prospects eyeballs.  An even bigger problem is violating the 10 second rule.  You have 10 seconds to grab your prospects attention or they bounce.  They’re gone…never to return.

So what’s the solution?  Have a 3rd party review your website.    I know how simplistic this answer sounds.  When you have a 3rd party review your site they will give you an objective opinion what works, and where you can improve your site.  You’re emotionally invested in your site, so you don’t see the flaws.

Second reason your business is struggling – You’re not getting paid what your worth.

Many small business owners (and consultants) are so hungry for work they cut their prices thinking this is a business strategy.  9 out of 10 times it will fail.  The bargain hunters of the world are not repeat customers.  They want quality, but they won’t pay for it.  Often they are the first to complain that you’re not living up to your promises.

Here’s the strategy to get people to pay you what you’re worth – courtesy of a colleague of mine.

Have a free item (Information report with some DIY value), and get their contact information when they sign up.  Follow-up 24-48 hours after they receive their information to check-in with them.  Explain that you’re extremely busy, but you wanted to ask them if they have any additional questions.  One of two things will happen, they will ask you for more help or not.  Keep the call to a brief 5 minutes – just saying HI and wanted to personally thank you stuff.  The key is not to SELL them – give them your contact information and end the call.

Free is fine to get their contact information, but if you can’t follow-up with them personally don’t even give them something for FREE.  They’re not a prospect you want to work with – they’re an information collector.  Since he started this tactic last year he closes more business because he followed up with pre-qualified prospects.

So what is your best lead generation tactic – write a comment – let our readers know what works (or what to avoid).



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