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  • #991332
    Will @ ABB
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    I’m wondering if anyone out their in a similar ‘business services’ field might be able to shed some light on how they are getting leads/new clients. I recently started up a bookkeeping business and struggling to bring in new clients. Currently I am relying on Google AdWords (which has not been very cost efficient so far) and a lot of the online directories (True Local, Service Seeking, etc.)

    My target market is small business owners/sole traders in the Adelaide metropolitan area.

    Any suggestions or tips?

    Thanks!

    #1180979
    MissSassy
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    Get out and about to any local networking groups and start meeting other business owners who could use your services. Also speak to local accountants who may not offer their own book keeping service as they may be able to refer you.

    #1180980
    Mirella Vertigo
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    Hi Will,

    Your best way to market to business owners is to get amongst them. Register your business with your local council’s business directory and get along to council area networking events (and neighbouring councils) where you’ll meet other businesses in your local area.

    I hope that helps. :)

    Don’t get discouraged!

    Mirella

    #1180981
    Will @ ABB
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    Thanks to MissSassy and Mirella,

    Yeah definitely sounds like it will be a good way to open up a few doors to potential clients. Thanks for the tips!

    #1180982
    Kelly Exeter FS Editor
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    Hey Will – Lucinda Lions wrote quite a good post on this topic here:
    http://www.flyingsolo.com.au/marketing/attracting-new-business/how-to-attract-an-endless-supply-of-clients

    Her suggestions definitely go down the line of playing the long game … but in the end, the long game is where it’s at. But for more short term things – her list under ‘Interact Endlessly’ is a good place to start.

    Hope that helps!
    Kelly x

    #1180983
    Will @ ABB
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    Thanks very much Kelly!

    That was an excellent read and definitely gave me a lot to think about. It’s also encouraging to know that a lot of business owners are going through the same struggles and still making it work – definitely gives me a light at the end of the tunnel! :)

    #1180984
    Kelly Exeter FS Editor
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    Pleasure Will. And YEP! We’ve all been in that same boat!

    #1180985
    MichaelDigital
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    Yes, the more I am engaged with business, and the older I get the more it seems obvious to me that people, relationships are key to all business dealings (!)

    I came on a recent study by the Carnegie center, it found that 85% of your ‘earning potential’ is down to the people skills you have (& the opposite is also true)
    As a student and practitioner of marketing, mainly online, I can suggest claiming your Google+ (places) listing and thoroughly filling out your business details, this will give your business a big chance of appearing at top of page 1 on Google searches in the ‘7 pack’, you mentioned local directories but not the big “G” itself. It is free and powerful.
    Also doing Facebook ‘right’ can provide surprising results – a lot of Australian business people take a look at Facebook, and give up too soon, and do not get to know how to use it properly – then they say : ‘Facebook is a dead loss’. Nope it is not.
    So yes, I applaud the preceding advice, but add those items, I have more, but that suffices for on here.

    #1180986
    bb1
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    I know its a bit old fasioned, but a couple of years ago I helped a start up book keeping business on an extremely tight budget, and we made up a batch of flyers, and did some very targeted letter box drops.

    I was lucky in as far as I knew the streets where a lot of small business owners would reside, and we only targeted those streets. Three afternoon runs of about 500 flyers and within about 3 months 7 good clients, Ok it was very careful targetting, but it worked. When asked why, the response was that no one had approached it that way, they had been thinking about getting a book keeper, and when it was put in their hands all they had to do was pick up the telephone.

    #1180987
    Will @ ABB
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    bb1, post: 211240 wrote:
    made up a batch of flyers, and did some very targeted letter box drops.

    I do like the idea of flyers direct to the business owner but I guess the problem is in identifying where that target market is. It does sound like a lot of time and money to find a needle in a haystack. Any thoughts on how to better target business owners directly?

    #1180988
    bb1
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    Will @ ABB, post: 211242 wrote:
    I do like the idea of flyers direct to the business owner but I guess the problem is in identifying where that target market is. It does sound like a lot of time and money to find a needle in a haystack. Any thoughts on how to better target business owners directly?

    500 flyers cost less than $30.00, 3 afternoons work to drop, for 7 clients, if thats a lot of money, than I am not sure what you are looking for. I suspect your adwords campaign will be a fair bit more than that.

    #1180989
    Will @ ABB
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    bb1, post: 211245 wrote:
    500 flyers cost less than $30.00, 3 afternoons work to drop, for 7 clients, if thats a lot of money, than I am not sure what you are looking for. I suspect your adwords campaign will be a fair bit more than that.

    Sorry, might have misinterpreted you in your first post – I thought you meant 500 flyers each afternoon (1500 total) which on top of more cost for flyers, sounded like a lot of time to deliver and also a much lower success rate (7/1500 or 0.0046%).

    Also, I more meant that I assume you had a lot better success because you knew where small business owners resided – apologies for the confusion.

    So I guess to re-phrase, do you have any ideas on how I could locate a good area (rich in small business owners) to target in a letter drop?

    Thanks again

    #1180990
    MatthewKeath
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    bb1, post: 211240 wrote:
    I know its a bit old fasioned, but a couple of years ago I helped a start up book keeping business on an extremely tight budget, and we made up a batch of flyers, and did some very targeted letter box drops.

    I was lucky in as far as I knew the streets where a lot of small business owners would reside, and we only targeted those streets. Three afternoon runs of about 500 flyers and within about 3 months 7 good clients, Ok it was very careful targetting, but it worked. When asked why, the response was that no one had approached it that way, they had been thinking about getting a book keeper, and when it was put in their hands all they had to do was pick up the telephone. when was this? What was on the flyer? How many calls did your friend get?

    If this worked for me mark my words I would be letter dropping every single weekend.

    #1180991
    bb1
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    MatthewKeath, post: 211251 wrote:
    when was this? What was on the flyer? How many calls did your friend get?

    If this worked for me mark my words I would be letter dropping every single weekend.

    A sstated a couple of years ago, so 2 years if you want specifics.

    on the flyer was the services offered, contact details, etc, etc

    From memory about double the number of calls to actual new clients

    Well maybe if you gave it a shot it would work, have you tried it.

    #1180992
    nikmaricic
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    Hi Will,

    I think that you should also look at building credibility – and this in turn can and will bring in clients. A great place to start is with blogging. Especially if you are using AdWords or even Facebook ads to drive people to your website.

    These days people don’t go to a website just to see what you do. They want to know why they should do business with you. What can they get from you? Are you the same as any other book keeper? What is your point of difference? Set up a blog on your website. Write about some things that could help small business with their bookkeeping. Or even other accounting related things, or small business topics that you have a healthy knowledge of. This way when people go to your website after clicking on your ad, they are reading about how knowledgeable you are AND what services you offer – how relevant you are to what they need. Blogging also helps with SEO – but that is another matter all together that an SEO expert can help with.

    I’m not saying you need to continue with your AdWords campaign for blogging to work. If anything, the opposite is true. You might not need to do as many ads because your website ranks higher on a localised search.

    But as others mentioned, build relationships! Relationships are key! Network with small business owners and you might just find yourself some new clients, new friends and new possibilities!

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