Getting To Know You

learningaboutyourbusinessRecently, I had a potential client asking for  help with some online marketing. I responded with several generalized questions about this person’s business. Almost immediately after I clicked send, a curt reply was sent back. “Forget it. Looks like you want me to do the work.” I was taken back by this reply – I hadn’t expected it at all.

There are a lot of reasons I ask my clients for information about their business. I want to learn what you’re trying to do and what your business is about. When I ask for historical data and quiz you about many aspects of your business, I am trying to provide you the absolute best value I can. From how you position yourself in the market, to interacting with your customers, to selling products or services, it is all relevant.

Sure, I can offer generalized opinions and answer questions about your website, but if you are unable or unwilling to provide in-depth information, my generalized feedback isn’t going to provide much value past what can be found by a couple searches on Google. I have a quick list I rundown where I can quickly identify common areas that can help a business, but it is no substitute for developing a marketing strategy for your specific needs.

The more you can tell me about your business and keep me informed, the better service and value I am able to provide.

I urge clients to be completely forthright in what kind of marketing they are currently undertaking as well as marketing campaigns or services they have tried in the past. Information is treated with confidentiality and when asked non-disclosure agreements can be signed, even if for a one hour meeting.

While I know a little about a lot of different types of businesses, but I won’t know everything about every business. What I know is how websites work with search engines. I take that knowledge and apply it to your business.

Despite the massive amount of people offering SEO services claiming a one size fits all solution, I must politely disagree. It is not simply, “more backlinks and linkjuice or linkbait.”

Business owners certainly don’t have to do business with someone who asks for this kind of information, but just remember: an informed marketing strategy is much better than an uninformed marketing strategy. When you become a client, I become personally invested in your business and work hard to ensure you are not only investing in the right service, but make sure you are not throwing money away.

One Response to Getting To Know You

  1. Steve Topper December 21, 2012 at 7:39 am #

    Your experience with this uninformed potential client reminds me of the old adage: “When you don’t know where you are going, any road will take you there.” You are fortunate that this person quickly sent a curt reply as you don’t want to do business with people like this. They are mentally lazy and are hoping someone else will do all the work for them. Clients like this quickly become an ongoing pain — always complaining about something. In my business what you were asking for is what we call holding the creative input session. You can’t begin work on a project or assignment until you have a thorough understanding of the person’s business, his or her needs, and ultimate goal or goals. Some people shouldn’t be in business for themselves — you just encountered one of them.

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