The Journey To Becoming An SEO Agency For IT Companies
It was a long road to learn where my potential clients were looking
Hey there, wondering how this happened and why you should do business with us?
Let’s rewind the clock and I will walk you through the journey to present day.
Over the years as the owner of an IT support and consulting company I didn’t know anything about marketing my own company on any level. When I needed to write even a single paragraph of sales copy I could there for an hour trying to decide what to write, sound familiar at all?
My marketing strategy was virtually zero for years. I read newsletters on how to market, read other success stories and all that good stuff. Every day I would make myself a promise that I would do “marketing”, whatever that word meant, to get new leads and grow my business.
I always promised tomorrow, which turned into next week and next month and basically turned into never. I was too busy being a tech, working in the business, projects and managing day to day operations as a small business.
Over the years and I tried different 3rd party marketing services and thought it was going to solve all of my problems and I was going to just sit back and watch the leads come in.
Other Marketing Methods Just Didn’t Work
Linkedin: Hired a consultant that specialized in getting leads for IT companies through Linkedin using my own profile. After thousands spent it yielded zero, the consultant told me in the end – “Your market is really weird right now, it’s hard to get leads.”. Hmm isn’t that why I hired you?
Google Ads: My first attempt was running the behemoth myself. I made a pointing of spending an hour a day working on Ads. In reality it was at best an hour a month but hey, I was spending a lot of money each month and as we all now as long as I’m spending money I had to get a good ROI right?
The reality is I knew very little about Google Ads and how to effectively use it.
Networking Groups: I joined BNI and was a member for almost 2 years. I’m sure it worked for others maybe in a smaller market but I was in a New York chapter. After 2 years of never missing a meeting it yielded almost zero and I eventually moved on.
Obscure Marketing Channels: I tried different channels like Craig’s List, Thumbtack, Yelp and a few others. Why you ask? It was half out of desperation and half really not knowing where my potential leads were looking.
Cold calling: Someone mashing buttons for me sounded like a great idea, while I worked on my business they would be getting me leads by the bucket.
A cold caller, unless that person has skin in the game and works for you full time, is a robot following a script. I spent thousands and yielded zero. Not that I would invest in this again but looking back on it I didn’t provide any structure at all – Grooming leads, follow ups, a unique message. I was missing all of that so of course the results were zero.
Google Ads Managed By A Consultant: Hired a 3rd party consultant to manage my Google Ads because he had to know more then me. Yes he did but there was a critical piece he didn’t know – My business. The fact is unless someone really knows your business as well as you do, at best, you will get a generic watered down and expensive approach.
I was spending thousands of dollars a month – half to the consultant and half to ad spend. Did we get leads? Sure! Did I get enough leads or close deals to make up for what we were spending? Not even close!
Do 3rd Party Vendors Really Understand Your Business?
To touch on a previous point knowing what I know now – An effective sales pipeline does not have to be expensive, it just needs to have a beginning and an end.
What I mean by that is no matter how much you spend to get leads or “bring the horse to water” if there is no water to drink you will get minimum results. That means you need the right calls to action on your website in the right places and have the right kind of water that horse is looking to drink.
All of that doesn’t need to cost a fortune, it just needs to be put in place by someone with experience that already walked this road.
SEO Was The Last Stop On My Train
I learned Google Ads myself and even was running BING ads. Yes really! I was spending thousands a month but still was not getting the ROI I was after. It was tough to get quality leads, it was tough to close deals, it was tough to close deals to even break even for the ad spend.
Near the end of 2022 I finally paused all my campaigns and decided to start learning that mystical 3 letter word – SEO.
Why SEO? Why not just outsource it to someone else and have them do it for me? I learned 2 things in my sales journey.
First, SEO was the last area I never tried but knew that I could eventually learn it since it’s all about tech and analytics and I had plenty of experience with both.
Second, the fact is nobody knows my business better than me! I was tired of getting bad advice by people outside my industry. IT? VOIP? backup? Security? At the end of the day it really is all the same areas to them and I would get the same generic approach.
My Appetite To Learn Was Insatiable
I started to watch and read about SEO – a lot. Webinars, YouTube channels, blogs, you name it. I learned the tools, what the industry terms meant, how to read the data and made a ton of mistakes on my own websites a long the way too.
Eventually I started to see real results and so did my sales team. Content that we produced gained traction and we started getting leads on a regular basis. I made better processes, better content, learned more, learned how to use SEO tools to their full potential and data correctly.
I also learned what my future leads were really looking for and insights a 3rd party simply can’t know and there was no looking back.
Today we enjoy a steady stream of leads in our market cities from Google Organic, Google Maps and even the ocasional BING search.
In order to get the most return on your investment is to partner with someone that knows your business as well as you do and that is a fact.