Why White Label SEO and How It Helps Your Agency Grow – Itamar Gero

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There comes a time when your agency will hit a wall. That wall can come in different forms: lack of personnel, difficulty in executing tasks beyond your expertise, and monthly revenue that seems to have plateaued. When you’ve reached that wall and stagnation wraps around your agency, it will be hard to scale.

Doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Your workaround: white label SEO.

How is White Label SEO Different from Outsourcing?

Aren’t they the same thing? Not exactly.

While white label SEO and outsourced SEO can appear similar on surface level, there’s still a very thin line that separates them.

Outsourcing SEO means hiring a provider to do the work for you without rebranding their service as a new product that you can offer to clients. Some agencies outsource their projects because they lack the time or manpower to do it on their own.

When you go for the white label track, on the other hand, it means buying a service that you don’t currently offer then reselling it under your own name. And that’s not the best part. White label SEO providers give you access to materials or resources they made, so you can present these to your clients with your logo when selling. In a sense, hiring a white label SEO company helps you: get things done easily, build your expertise, and grow your revenue.

In certain cases, the two may overlap. For instance, you purchased white label local SEO from a provider because you want to start offering this service to local businesses. The provider can handle the work, provide the deliverables, and send them to your clients with the service packaged under your brand. Where does your agency fit in this process? You can allocate more of your time and effort into making the right decisions, building real relationships with clients, and giving your agency every bit of chance to be successful. 

Your White Label Formula for Agency Success

At the core, agency owners are still entrepreneurs. As an entrepreneur, your priorities lie in making sure your business stays above water. So, this brings the question, “How can I make the most of white label solutions for my agency?”

Here are the answers:

1. Be Upfront with the Value You Offer

Here’s the reality of working as an agency: attracting clients and making sure they stay all boils down to the value you can offer. If they can’t find value in your service, you’ll find them leaving your agency and going to the competition.

Whether you’re actively finding clients or finding ways to retain them, you need to be upfront with the value you’re offering. This value can be a white paper to educate clients or leads of how your service can help their business, or an SEO audit to show what’s lacking in their site that might call for your agency’s services. The key is to learn how you can translate the value of your service into a language that clients or prospects can easily understand.

In short, your agency should be equipped to address the question “What’s in it for me?” Believe me, you’ll get asked this all the time.

2. Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket

Do you rely on just one service as your bread and butter? This is a common mistake that agencies (especially startups) make.

Most agencies focus on their expertise as their main source of revenue, but this doesn’t mean opening any opportunity to offer other digital marketing services. This is the entire point of why you get white label services—to expand your current service offerings and generate a new revenue stream.

So, how do you make this work with white label SEO? Find ways to complement the service with another one. An example is creating a bundle for your web design service to include SEO. As web design is often a one-off project, there’s no monthly recurring revenue.

By complementing this with SEO, you have a new source of monthly revenue because results don’t typically happen in a span of 30 days. This means an SEO project can carry over the next month. If your white label SEO provider has successfully brought your clients to first page rankings, there’s no reason to stop the service.

If you’re adamant in putting all your eggs in one basket, you’re taking away the opportunity for your agency to scale. 

3. Learn the Art of Pricing

“How much do I need to price my services?”

You’ll probably encounter this when you start working with a white label SEO company. The ideal amount to price your SEO service is three times the retail amount, so you have enough margin to make profit. Here’s what you need to understand when pricing your SEO service:

  • Be reasonable with your markup – I’m going to be honest here: don’t be greedy. The last thing you want is to drive away clients with a markup that’s too high. At the same time, don’t undervalue the time and effort you put into your clients and the service. When marking up your SEO service, base it on the value that you add to their business.
  • Determine your pricing model – You have different ways to present your SEO pricing. If clients are looking for one-time projects with specific tasks, an hourly rate model can be a good start. If clients are looking for a long-term SEO project, go for a retainer model. You can also create packages with specific inclusions to offer different options for your clients.

4. Be an Affiliate

Networking doesn’t only allow you to connect with people; it’s another way to earn more. How? This is where being an affiliate comes in.

Many white label SEO providers offer an affiliate program to potential agency partners. Depending on their affiliate program, you can earn from 5% to 30% commission for every purchase of a prospective partner with your affiliate link.

Here’s an example:

Your affiliate program allows you to get a 6% commission from an SEO consultant’s website that has your affiliate link. The consultant makes a purchase of $5000 every month, which means you’re earning $300 monthly commission. On top of that, you can still resell SEO services to clients, allowing you to utilize both the white label SEO service and affiliate program to maximize your earnings.

The secret to a successful affiliate program is to grow your affiliates—as the network grows, the more rewards you get. 

Final Thoughts

Good digital marketing agencies know how to get things done to deliver results for clients; the great ones know when it’s time to pass off the hat to the experts. You don’t just fulfill SEO deliverables for clients—it’s about knowing how and where to delegate your time and effort into what matters the most for them and for your business. And that all starts with white label SEO.

If everyone who reads our articles and likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure by your donations – Thank you.

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How A Culture Of “Doing The Right Thing” Can Be Good For Business – Megan Hansen

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MOD Pizza was founded with the goal of using business to make a positive social impact. Founders Ally and Scott Svenson realized that through the fast-casual pizza segment they pioneered, MOD could create a positive effect on the lives of their fiercely loyal employees. MOD’s hiring philosophy – that talent is everywhere, but opportunity is not – continues to drive their success and gives their employees purpose.

The Challenge

When MOD learned that 5.5 million young people in the U.S., ages 18-24, are out of school and unemployed, they saw an opportunity to not only impact lives but solve a critical business need.  Like many other companies, MOD was having difficulty recruiting entry-level workers to keep up with the 2,000 MOD jobs created every year through their rapid expansion.  MOD was also challenged with high turnover; although their rate was typical of the restaurant industry, it was higher than they would like.

The Solution

Through FSG’s Innovation Lab program, MOD set out to discover whether a partnership with a community-based organization could help address their high turnover and recruitment challenges through providing them with both a pipeline of career-ready youth and the wrap-around supports these youth needed to be successful.

MOD decided to focus their pilot partnership in the Bay Area where MOD restaurants were facing upwards of 67% turnover at the 90-day mark.  Next, they identified potential partners in the region and ended up forming a partnership with JUMA, a national youth-centered social enterprise that was also interested in piloting a new employer partnership model.

The Result

Less than a year into the partnership, MOD is finding that their collaboration with JUMA is having an impact on their recruitment and turnover. Of young people hired by MOD during the pilot, only 50% turned over by the 90-day mark compared to 67% for the region.

When asked what they value most about the partnership, general managers shared that not only has the partnership eased their recruitment challenges, but it has also provided them with an amazing opportunity to invest in the youth.  MOD plans to scale impact hiring at a national level, building both partnerships and a database of community-based organizations that all MOD general managers can tap into as talent pipelines and for support.

Additionally, through the MOD-JUMA Pilot Study, MOD learned that 70% of their 6,000+ employee base are 18-24 years old and that the retention strategies implemented to support the youth hired through the pilot would also be beneficial for their entire employee base.  This has led to the launch of several new initiatives:

  • New KPIs: MOD has begun to hold General Managers accountable for turnover rates. They have set a company goal of reducing turnover by 20% and in 2018 are already seeing a measurable reduction in turnover and cost due to this change.
  • Education Benefits: Through their new Human Resource Information System, the team learned more about employees and their education levels.  With many of MOD’s youth lacking a college and sometimes high school degree, the company is hoping to add an education assistance program to their benefits package to help staff develop their skills for careers at MOD and beyond.
  • Transparent Career Pathways: MOD has developed resources that easily outline the steps and requirements to become a general manager. Their employees come from various backgrounds and bring their own MODness to the team. They recognize that they shouldn’t operate on the assumption that every employee intrinsically understands the pathway to promotion but should instead support employees in helping them get there. They also recognize that MOD might not be a long-term career for everyone, but they can equip employees with meaningful professional development for job opportunities outside of MOD and create pathways for wage progression.

What’s Next

MOD continues to build on their work with FSG and the Innovation Lab to lead in the Opportunity Employment space. Using their business as a platform, MOD is exploring new ways to impact lives at the store level and beyond. By sharing their story, MOD hopes to demonstrate the business value of collaborating for talent instead of fighting for it, and how investing in the lives of employees can produce a positive ROI. The company calls this “Spreading MODness” – the ripple effect of doing the right thing. That is MOD’s purpose and for them, it’s good business.

If everyone who reads our articles and likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure. For as little as $5, you can donate us – Thank you.

3 Sales Meeting Mistakes You Don’t Know You’re Making

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Running effective sales meetings doesn’t come naturally to me. Over time, I’ve learned how to structure them in a way that takes advantage of my introverted nature and my natural awkwardness. But, if you’re still trying to find your own path, you’ll enjoy learning from the conversation I had recently with Jill Konrath.

Konrath is an international sales speaker who was named one of the most influential sales experts of the 21st century by LinkedIn (where she currently has more than 350,000 followers). She’s also the author of four best-selling books — More Sales, Less Time; Agile Selling; SNAP Selling; and Selling to Big Companies — and she’s worked with companies like GE, Microsoft, IBM and Staples.

Konrath has also been doing a lot of work recently on the topic of mastering sales meetings, so I was eager to pick her brain. Below are three common sales meeting mistakes that came up in our conversation.

1. You don’t understand the goal of a sales meeting.

The goal of a sales meeting is to get the sale, right? Not according to Konrath.

“A lot of salespeople think that their goal is to explain their product and service, to tout their capabilities and to differentiate themselves from their competitors,” she told me. “The real purpose of a sales meeting is to generate interest in continuing the conversation and to determine if you or your product or service can truly make a difference to that person and to that company.”

Are you still trying to hard sell on your first interaction with a prospect? If so, you should take a step back and test a softer approach.

2. You don’t really know who your competitors are.

So how did we get it so wrong? How did so many of us come to this mistaken impression about what it really takes to run an effective sales meeting?

In my experience, one big problem is that too many of us copy what we see our competitors doing. They offer a free consultation; we do too. They focus on the features and benefits of their products; we do the same.

The problem, of course, is that your competitors may not be any more effective than you are. They may have different value propositions, or be selling to different types of customers. Furthermore, according to Konrath, you may not really be competing against others in your industry in the first place.

“Your competitor is the status quo, number one,” she said. “The first thing that you have to be able to do is to help people understand why the status quo is not good enough for helping them achieve their future goals or objectives. That should be the number one focus on any initial call. Remember, people are not necessarily buying in the first meeting. In fact, very few do. What you need to do is get people to the point where they say, ‘Geez, we really need to take a look at this.’”

As a side note, there are tools out there that can help with the process of sales call targeting and messaging. Konrath likes Rambl.ai, though there are similar products available to suit different needs/budgets.

3. You aren’t prepared.

During our meeting, Konrath shared a sobering statistic, courtesy of Forrester Research: Of 319 executive-level buyers surveyed, “Only 20 percent of the salespeople they meet with are successful in achieving their expectations and creating value.”

Understandably, according to Konrath “If you”ve got a meeting with an important buyer, and you’re not prepared, the chances of you having a second meeting are really slim.”

So, how do you prepare? Reading up on the company is part of it, as is learning more about the specific people you’ll be speaking with. Using this information to prepare relevant case studies and examples to share in your sales calls is a good idea, as well.

In addition, use your preparation to come up with the specific questions you’ll ask during your call.

Not only will this demonstrate your level of preparedness, it’ll enable you to drive the conversation in a way that gets prospects engaged. Konrath gives the example of the kinds of questions she’d ask a tech company aiming to reduce its time to market:

  • How important is it for you to be able to shrink your time to market on a new product launch?
  • How are you currently handling your product launches?
  • People doing launches [a certain] way, Konrath said she’d tell a tech company, experience “these kinds of problems.” Her question: “Are you guys running into these problems?”
  • What are your objectives related to this?
  • What are you trying to achieve in 2018 in this area?
  • What’s coming up the pike that is related to this? Or how big a priority for you is reducing time to market in your organization  this coming year?

Customize questions like these to your company and its products, according to the research you’ve done. Use them to get prospects excited about your solution. If you can do that, the rest of your sales process will fall naturally into place.

If everyone who reads our articles and likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure. For as little as $5, you can donate us – Thank you.

To Be a Better Salesperson, Master Your Ego and Bend Time – David Meltzer

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In the early ’90s, my first job out of law school had me selling legal research at Westlaw, where I was trained by Mike Bosworth, a solutions selling expert. He taught me that a good salesperson needs to have two important characteristics: empathy and ego.

I believe that this approach is outdated, as ego and empathy are related in my view, and this formula certainly needs to be upgraded. There’s another important factor to be added that Bosworth did not consider when it comes to achievement in business: time.

There are two things that often get in our way when it comes to sales, business, or life: our perception of self (our ego) and our perception of time.

Leggo my ego

The ego has illusionary needs, which can create a waste of your time and energy. The ego also has the need to be right or to be offended. It can cause you to feel a need to be separate, inferior or superior. Ego can cause fear, guilt or shame. It will have you searching for recognition over achievement.

These needs cause you to react in inefficient or ineffective ways. This is why it’s necessary to utilize the following tools that will counteract your ego:

  • Gratitude gives us perspective.
  • Empathy brings forgiveness for ourselves and others.
  • Accountability provides control over everything that’s attracted to our lives.
  • Effective communication lets us draw upon inspiration and share it with others.

When it comes to communication, there are two types of people: One type manipulates, and the other inspires. What’s the difference between the two? Ego.

Ego can hamper any type of relationship, from business to personal, so use those four tools to keep it in check.

Time, activity and productivity

The missing component in my mentor’s sales philosophy was a perception or understanding of time.

I’m sure you’re familiar with this phrase: “Time equals money.” I believe that the way we utilize time is actually what equals money. There’s no such thing as linear time. Like ego, it’s an illusion.

Time in business is directly related to two things: your productivity and your accessibility.

Making optimal use of your time allows you to be productive. It also allows you to be accessible, to be of service. Understanding time pushes you to ask for help when you need it (which saves you time), or to pitch in and help others when necessary (which saves them time).

The best way to “bend” or maximize time is to be a student of your calendar. Now, most people think this simply means you need to look at your calendar at least twice a day. But, no matter how many times you check your calendar, if you’re a busy person, you’re going to forget when things are scheduled, or what events are taking place.

To be a student of your calendar takes consistency, in order to raise your awareness of what’s going on in the organization around you. People who do this are better able to take advantage of the opportunities that are being attracted to them.

Study your calendar both in the morning and at night. Ponder efficiencies and potential problems, and prepare to make adjustments.

You’ll see that your productivity changes and you become aware of new opportunities that exist and now are accessible to you. Equally important, you’ll discover new ways to save time.

In order to instill this strategy in my team, every morning I have a Hill Street Blues meeting (a police “roll call” briefing, for those who are too young to get the reference) where I go through my calendar and ask questions to ensure my employees are students of their calendar as well as the company agenda. This creates a collective belief in accessibility and leads the team to be more effective, efficient and statistically successful.

If I can, I do it, no matter how annoying it may be to others. “Do It Now” is a remedy for procrastination. It tends to take you twice as much time to finish a task if you don’t start right away. And the more you put it off, the less successful you tend to be in the end.

One example of this is email. If I can respond to an important (key word) email shortly after it comes in, I do it now. That way I don’t find myself swamped, overwhelmed and feeling begrudged, at the end of the day when I’m ready to go home, by a slew of emails that have accumulated.

No traps from ego or time

If you understand the traps of your ego and combat them with the tools of gratitude, empathy, accountability and effective communication you’ll soon be seeing success in both business and your personal life.

Also focus on your perception of time, especially as it relates to productivity and accessibility. Learn to “bend time” by being a student of your calendar and practicing the “Do It Now” strategy every day.

If everyone who reads our articles and likes it, helps fund it, our future would be much more secure. For as little as $5, you can donate us – Thank you.

The 5 Best Tips From ‘The LinkedIn Guide To Getting Hired In 2018’

It is commencement season, and graduates all over the country and cramming for finals, packing their bags and preparing to embark on an exciting new chapter of their lives. As graduates consider their next step, they have a lot of questions they need to answer: What job do they want? Where do they want to live? What job is a good fit for their major? What are their salary expectations?

LinkedIn, a top recruitment and networking website, compiled a report on the 2016-2017 graduates researching where they landed professionally, geographically and fiscally. With more graduates than ever before, the job market is increasingly competitive and graduates need to be as knowledgable and prepared as possible. There are over one million entry-level jobs posted on Linkedin at this moment, so here are a few tips to help graduates land their dream job this summer:

1. Apply Now

The highest entry-level hire rate is April through June, so start polishing your resume and cover letters now, then apply! If you already have a summer internship lined up, August is also a good time to apply.

2. Update Your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is one of the leading job search and recruitment websites in the world, it is a resume that also gives users room to show some of their personality. If you haven’t created a profile, it’s another avenue to put yourself out there, and makes it incredibly easy to apply to jobs posted on the site. Here are some good tips for making your profile stand out.

3. Make Sure To Include Soft Skills And Digital Literary On Your Resume And LinkedIn Profile

Many of the graduates that got hired last year listed soft skills and their digital literacy in their LinkedIn profile and resume. These are the top 10 skills of grads that got hired last year accordin

4.  Where Companies Are Hiring

The top 10 cities hiring graduates in 2018

According to the guide, the 10 cities hiring the most entry-level professionals are: New York City, NY, San Francisco, CA, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, CA, Chicago, IL, Boston, MA, Dallas/Fort Worth, TX, Atlanta, GA, Austin, TX and Seattle, WA. If you are unsure what career path you want to take, or do not know the best place to apply for jobs in your desired industry, read the rest of the guide here.

5. Small Businesses Create The Most Jobs

Many large firms dominate metropolitan areas in recruitment, but small businesses post more entry-level roles than any other size company. So if you’re looking to work for a smaller company, you are in luck. They may not always be the easiest job postings to find, but if you keep looking you will find the job and company size you are looking for.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

I’m a twenty something freelance journalist, writer and blogger in New York City. I write about everything I’ve done wrong as a twenty something woman here in the trenches. Take my advice at your own risk.