My 3 Step Method To Landing Easy Local SEO Clients That Pay
What I want to do today is to shift your perception of SEO, and redefine it in a way that helps you understand that SEO is really straightforward, and almost easy as long as you have a process.
You know, that’s true for a lot of complex tasks that we take on as human beings.
Think way back to the time that you learned how to drive a car.
Remember how you felt as you climbed into the driver’s seat for the first time, and looking at all the gauges and buttons.
Maybe you felt a little nervous or overwhelmed.
I know I sure did.
The day I learned how to drive was the week of my birthday.
I remember my parents drove me to the place where I took my written test.
I passed my test, and was handed my brand new drivers license.
We all went out to our car in the parking lot, and I climbed into the driver’s seat.
I was so nervous to drive home.
My hands were at 10 and 2 on the steering wheel the whole time, and every single road sign I saw I had to remember back to my test to know what to do.
“Ok, here’s a 4-way stop. The right of way is to the right, so they get to go first.”
“Now here’s a flashing yellow arrow at the intersection.”
Now I’ve been driving for 15, 16 years, and it’s second nature for me.
Driving is still a complex task, and there are a lot of things to remember, but over the years I’ve developed a process for driving, almost like a habit, and I can get behind the wheel and drive down the street to the store, or across the country to visit family.
Does that make sense? Are you tracking with me?
The same method of creating a process can be done for search engine optimization.
All you have to remember is to focus on the simplest tasks that will accomplish big wins for clients, and repeat this process to scale.
So what we’re going to do over the next 45-50 minutes is break down a typical SEO campaign that I run for lead generation, and I’ll show you a very simple 3-step method to find local clients, get them quick rankings and then how to sell them into super valuable, high ticket monthly retainers.
Whenever I talk with people about SEO, they immediately have these negative thoughts about search engine optimization.
It’s too hard, it takes too much time, and more often than not it’s spammy. You’re manipulating the search engines into giving good rankings, they say.
You hear all these stories of Google penalties, losing those rankings and seeing a drop in traffic and leads because the SEO agency did some spammy link building.
Or Google one day updates their algorithm, and you find out all the rankings you had are gone, and now you’re out a bunch of money and time.
I want to change your perception about SEO, and show you why this type of thinking is flawed, and help you overcome some of your own objections about search engine optimization and why it is such a valuable service to offer.
There are actually 2 different types of SEO. One is national and international, and the other is local.
Both types of SEO are extremely valuable for different types of businesses, but what I want to focus on for today’s workshop is local SEO.
Local SEO is about optimizing for local searches, and we’re going to be discussing ways to get various local businesses more local customers.
So let’s break it down by going back to the title of today’s workshop.
My 3 Step Method To Landing Easy Local SEO Clients That Pay
What do I mean by “Easy Local SEO Clients”?
Well, when we’re doing marketing for businesses, there are easy clients, and there are hard clients.
I’m not talking about dealing with personalities, because there will always be people with difficult personalities that we have to overcome, right?
What I mean by easy clients is looking for those businesses that don’t require a lot of pre-selling to get customers.
These are businesses like dentists, chiropractors, gyms, yoga studios, restaurants, heating and air conditioning, plumbers and landscapers.
What do you do when you get a cavity? You go to the dentist.
What do you do when your furnace breaks? You find a HVAC company.
What about when you want to go out to eat? You go to a restaurant.
What if you have back pain? You go to a chiropractor.
These are EASY clients to do SEO for.
Let’s flip it around now.
What if you want to make more money on the side?
Well, you can do a lot of things.
You can sell supplements.
You can do retail arbitrage.
Each one of these possible avenues is going to involve educating the prospect.
So if you do SEO consulting for a e-commerce site that sells supplements, you’re going to be dealing with writing a bunch of content, and then trying to rank for really competitive keywords, and then you’ll have to optimize for conversions on the site, and maybe producing case studies and product reviews...do you see how complicated that is?
Now don’t get me wrong, it can be done, and with a great SEO campaign you can see a lot of results for the client...but we want 3 things: easy, fast and valuable.
When you focus on finding easy local clients, like dentists, chiropractors and gyms, you can have great results quickly and easily, and provide long term value for those clients with very minimal effort.
Does this make sense? Do you see what an opportunity we have here?
Take a quick look on Google right now, and search for dentists or chiropractors in your local area.
There are tons of these businesses that need help with their local SEO.
Are you getting excited?
Alright, so how do we start?
Let’s dive right in, and I’ll start with the first myth of SEO.
You’ve probably heard this before, and you might even hear it from clients. “SEO is difficult”.
Secret #1: How to find unclaimed Google listings of easy local businesses in 10 minutes or less.
This is the heart of the lesson, and it’s going to transform these businesses, and transform your consulting business too.
And basically, it looks like this.
We identify easy local business that we want to work with.
Remember, dentists, chiropractors, yoga studios…
Then we find the listings for these businesses in Google Maps that are unclaimed.
This is important.
These are listings that the business owners have not claimed.
This is a huge problem for these business owners.
They currently have no control over these listings.
They don’t have their business hours listed.
No website link.
Now, another problem is that Google may delete these listings.
In fact, when businesses don’t log into their Google My Business profiles and verify their business listings, Google may in fact remove their listing completely.
That means that their competitors will get calls the website clicks that they should be getting.
So what can you do for these businesses?
You can offer to get their listing verified for them, and help them optimize their listing with pictures, hours of operation and reviews that will help them get more traffic and customers.
No business wants their listing to be removed, so this is a very valuable offer you’re going to make for them.
The other advantage that business owners have in getting their listing claimed is that now they have the opportunity to respond to reviews.
It’s a big problem for consumers when they see a business not responding to reviews- either good or bad.
So let’s hop over to Google and we’ll take a look at how to find these businesses.
Let's search "dentist in huntington beach ca", and at the top of the search results page we see the 3-pack.
When you click “more places” you’ll see Google Maps on the right, and the local listings on the left. You can click on a listing, and sometimes you’ll see “Own this business?” over on the map.
Now, how do these unclaimed businesses even get on to Google Maps?
Well a lot of these businesses are populated in Google from public records.
Sometimes we’ll see when a business opens up, their information becomes public record, and Google will add the business to Google Maps.
Google wants to be a great discovery engine for people looking for things to do in their local communities, so they want to make sure every local business is represented in their search engine.
The problem here is that Google wants these businesses to eventually verify and claim their listings.
In fact, they’re incentivizing these businesses to do just that.
Take a look at this message that was posted to a Google support forum.
It says “On July 28th, Google will begin shutting down those GMB associated Google pages that have not been associated with user accounts and are also not verified.
It’s letting people know that they’ve got a time frame to claim their listings, or else the listings will be removed.
This is what these business owners are up against, and this is a huge opportunity for you as a local marketing consultant to help you get your foot in the door with these business owners.
Now another benefit to getting their listing claimed and verified, and you going in there to update the listing with useful information about the business is that it will tend to rise in the rankings.
The more valuable information, the better chance it has to rank high in these search results.
It could even rank in that 3-pack on the first page of the rankings, which will translate into more customers for that business.
So you reach out to these businesses, and offer to fix this problem for them.
You can either charge a small, one-time fee, or you could do it for free to really lead with value.
Then what you can do from there is get them into a monthly SEO retainer where you can upsell them on additional services, like optimizing their website for conversions, getting them more reviews and other SEO type campaigns.
Now getting the listing claimed is really easy.
You just click “Own this business” and go through the process of verifying the listing.
Google will basically send that business a postcard in the mail.
Of course you’ll get their permission first, but then that postcard will have a pin number on it.
Then you enter that pin number and suddenly the business listing is verified. Super easy.
So why wouldn’t a business owner just do this themselves?
Well they totally could, but they’re too busy running their business.
That’s why this service you’re offering to them is so valuable.
They don’t have time to be messing around with Google, so you’re going show them this problem, and then provide a solution.
So to recap step 1:
- Contact the business owner and tell them that their listing may be removed
- Google doesn’t know if they’re still in business because the listing isn’t verified
- Put that loss into real life terms
- Give them a solution by offering to get their listing verified. Deliver your promise!
- Offer to help them get more traffic, rankings and customers by offering your SEO services.
The second myth about SEO is this. And tell me if you’ve heard this one before. “SEO takes too much time.”
Well what I’m about to show you is going to flip this myth on its head.
Secret #2: How to get quick rankings for these easy local businesses by optimizing their listings.
In local SEO, the key to rankings is what we call citations.
A citation is a mention of that company’s Name, Address or Phone Number on the web.
It could be in the form of a directory listing in Yelp, or even on a Youtube video description.
The more citations a business has, the more likely they’re going to rank higher in a local search.
But the key here is to make sure that what’s in Google matches what’s on their website.
And consistency is key.
Now that you’ve verified and claimed their Google listing, take a look at the business’ Contact Us or About page on their website.
Does the business name match what’s on their Google listing?
And I’m talking about looking for even the slightest variation.
For example, if you’re working with Joe’s HVAC, Inc.
On Google, they might be listed as Joe’s HVAC, Inc., but on their contact page they’ve got Joe’s Heating & Air.
That’s something you’ll want to fix, and align their website with what’s listed in Google.
Other optimizations you can make on their listing, and I mentioned this earlier in the workshop, are adding things like photos of their business to their listing. Getting their hours of operation listed. Adding a link to their website. Making sure they’ve got the right category selected.
And when you go out and build new citations for that business, on sites like Yelp, Superpages, even Facebook, you’ll likely see their rankings increase pretty quickly.
Citations are like votes, and the more votes the business has on relevant websites, the more trust that business has and that’s a positive indicator for Google.
The third myth about SEO is something I hear a lot. “SEO is spammy”.
Have you heard that before?
Secret #3: How to sell these businesses into super-valuable, high ticket monthly SEO retainers that will dramatically change their business for the better.
We’re not talking about the usual link building, guest posting crap that so many SEO agencies and consultants are offering.
That kind of stuff Google frowns on, and will eventually get that site penalized.
What we’re offering these businesses is a way to get more traffic to their site, more conversions on their website and more trust in their customers’ eyes that will benefit them (and you) over the long term.
Are you ready for this one?
Now that we’ve gained that business owner’s trust by getting their business listing verified in Google, and optimized that listing with some great information to help them connect with new customers, and we’ve seen a boost in rankings for local searches, we can offer to help them on a monthly basis by getting them more traffic, more conversions and more reviews.
These 3 things will do amazing things for their business.
Say you’re speaking with a dentist.
What if you could get them more people scheduling appointments with them for cleanings?
Maybe one of those new customers needs some dental work done, like a crown or new veneers?
What would 1 or 2 additional furnace tune-ups do for the HVAC company you’re working with?
Do you think these business owners would be willing to pay you a monthly fee to help them get these kind of results?
What I want to show you now is a super simple and effective method to close these businesses, and to get them into a monthly, high-ticket SEO retainer.
There are 3 steps to closing local SEO clients:
Running a citations audit for them
Identifying conversion gaps in their website, and
Getting more client reviews and testimonials for them
Citations are easy to build, but you need to make sure to fix the incomplete, missing and incorrect citations first.
The tool I recommend for this is Loganix. For $7, they can run a manual citations audit (which you could mark up to a higher price if you prefer), and will provide a complete list of all that business' citations.
This will include all the citations they'd need to fix.
Next, you'd lay out a plan to build new citations.
Check out Moz Local, where they have a list of categories to choose the right citations from, as well as a list of citations by city.
So if you're working with a chiropractor in Los Angeles, you can check out Moz's recommended citation sources.
Once you have laid out a strategy for these 3 mini SEO campaigns, you present them with a choice.
You explain to them exactly how you would execute these campaigns, or offer to do this for them.
Let’s say you audit their citations, and present them with your findings on all the citations that have missing or incorrect information.
You tell them exactly what to do in order to fix them.
Don’t hold anything back.
Explain to the business owner that you genuinely want to help them, and then walk them through the steps to fix their citations and build new ones, whether you’re on the phone or in person at their location.
If you audit their website, and notice something that prevents people from getting a hold of them, or maybe some information is missing from certain pages, show them exactly how you’d recommend fixing this.
Maybe you notice their Google ads are sending people right to their home page, and not a landing page for that keyword.
They could be losing conversions, and you could recommend to them how to fix that problem.
Maybe you see their Google listing has little to no customer reviews.
Do they display reviews on their website? How about customer testimonials or case studies?
You know, the most effective marketing is in the form of social proof, and seeing stories from real people talking about their experiences with that business can help lift conversions and get more customers for that business.
Now if you provide all the steps needed to fix these problems to the business owner, chances are they say they’re too busy to take all this work on.
They’re busy running a business, and if you offer to help them out on a monthly basis, I bet a majority of the business owners will take you up on that offer.
If they don’t at that moment, they may in the future, so that’s a great opportunity to put them into a nurture sequence either through email or by reaching out to them over the phone in a couple of weeks.