- Pre-Facebook Pat tried more than 100 marketing tactics
- Simple idea: know market, get in front of them
- There’s more than Facebook out there
- As a consumer, how reliant are you on Facebook?
- References, Reviews, Relationships
- Referral is first line of defense
- Online reviews come next
- Direct relationships are also very valuable
- Facebook ads are a great way to start and grow relationships
- Use a mix of referral tactics
- Try to generate 1 “guest” per client
- Testimonials are great, but reviews get views
- Build more relationships
- Facebook ads are just icing on the cake
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Hey, Pat Rigsby here. And in today’s episode, I want to talk with you about marketing without Facebook ads. Somehow over the past handful of years, the, the, the landscape and our industry has become such that people feel like their only path to getting new clients is often Facebook ads. In this episode, we’re going to disprove that theory, and we’re going to give you a game plan that you can use to get clients without ads. Let’s get to it.
Welcome to the fitness business school with Pat Rigsby, the podcast for fitness entrepreneurs who want to make more income, have greater impact, and enjoy more freedom in their ideal business. If you’d like an accelerated route to these goals, email me at [email protected] and put BGA in the subject line and I’ll get you all the details about our business growth accelerator program.
Obviously, this episode’s probably going to date me to an extent because, you know, my first couple of fitness businesses were very much pre-Facebook type of businesses, and we documented it at one point that we’d tried over 107 different marketing or advertising tactics to generate new business. I mean, you name it. We tried it, everything from car wraps and billboards to TV spots, to radio spots, to kind of public access TV, like a segment you know, press releases. There, there were so many different things that worked because the idea was very simple, right? You, you knew who you were. People were to, to an extent. I mean, you knew who your target market was, and basically you wanted to be where they were or be where they would see your message or hear your message. And you know, that it, it didn’t really matter what the medium was. As long as you can convey your message to the person that you wanted to reach.
You know, I, I had great success with radio spots. I had really, really good success with strategic alliances, but it got me to thinking recently, because there would be coaching calls I would get on with clients that they would say, well, my Facebook ads, aren’t working, what do I do? And you know, the, the idea that we’re so dependent on this one, channel, this one mechanism to grow our business. It’s almost like we’re held and it’s, it’s just this false belief. So I wanted to kind of take this in, in a direction where I look at how I behave as a consumer, and that shapes a lot of my thinking when it comes to how I need to market as a small business owner. And in the past six to seven months, we, we bought a new house. We sold our old house in this whole process, you know, I’ve hired a, a realtor. We’ve had people come over and do like a hardscape, a new patio and fire pit and stuff outside. We’ve had somebody come and do irrigation work. We’ve had contractors come and do a number of remodeled type updates. We had new flooring installed. We you know, we, we had people come and because they’re such a, a nice outdoor area out, back coming spray for mosquitoes and ticks and all that stuff. And you know, a couple other home upgrades in this new house. And none of those originated on Facebook, zero of the, the connections that, that, that I formed with these the, these businesses, the owner of these businesses services they provide, none of them originated on Facebook and, you know, the, the way they originate almost always come, you know, it, it really always comes from one of three things refer referrals, reviews, or relationships, and the, the referral side of things. It’s pretty straight. You know, I, I have a couple of service providers that I you know, that I’ve leaned on for a long time, if they recommend somebody, then you know, that person gets the benefit of the doubt. The, you know, the flooring was a referral from our normal contractor people who came in and refinished cabinets in the kitchen referral from you know, the people who do the landscaping, the hardscapes, the, so the referrals are just, is kind of that first line of defense.
If I don’t have somebody that is a direct referral and an easy referral to me, then, you know, I’m probably going to Google something and I’m going to look at reviews. I’m going to see what the feedback is on. And you know, if somebody doesn’t have a, a meaningful number of reviews and the reviews aren’t really positive, then I just moved pass that.And then finally relationships, we actually have somebody coming over to do a quote on something else after noon. And it’s just somebody I know through that, that has a contracting business that I’ve met through the coaching baseball. And if we think about it this way, like most of our, our purchases, like where do we look for things? Where do you look for the service providers that you hire? How do you shop for everything from the restaurants that you may go to, to the, the, you know, the retail purchases that you make, what percentage of those things originate through Facebook, advertising it, if you, you were like most of the people that I’ve talked to, it’s minimal, it’s really, really a small percentage. And that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t do Facebook advertising the way I think of Facebook look, ads is very simple. I’m doing building that network of relationships.
So like in advance so that when they are ready to buy, they choose me because we already have a preexisting relationship. I’m not trying to catch lightning in a bottle, so to speak and time it up where, Hey, this person shopping, they happened to be on Facebook and I’m going to sell them something right. The moment, because that’s not right, how the typical consumer behaves, the typical consumer is not getting on Facebook or the gram is their first step in a shopping experience in, you know, in trying to solve a problem and trying to make a purchase. So what you would be better served it doing would be to think about, okay, how can I reach the people that I want to serve? Who are those people, where are they at? And then how can I most effectively reach them them in a way that it really lines up with the, the way that they’re going to behave when it comes to shopping? Well, referrals are always going to be, see one of our strongest marketing tools. So we, you want to have more than one referral tactic in place.
We want this kind of mix a referral tactics that we’re rotating between because you know, the, the referrals that come in are pre-sold right. We’re not having to convince them because the person referring them has already, in many cases, sold this prospect on us. They’ve, they’ve kind of closed that gap from somebody being interested to ready in a way that would take us a lot of social proof. It would take us a lot of building that know, like trust factor. It’s something where somebody gets to us and they’re kind of close to the finish line with a referral. So we want to mix in a variety of ways to generate referrals. And we want to educate our people, our clients on how to notice people who might be in the market for what you have to offer and what the next step should be. We want to create low risk referral opportunities. We want to get our existing clients to spread the word about us in really simple, consistent ways, sharing the content that we’re providing on their social media pages. We want them to be a success story for us. We want them to do reviews because if they are a, a documented case, study a review on our site, they’re going to kind of see themselves, is this ambassador for the business. And they’re going to be more proactive in spreading the word. So that’s the first thing we want to do. We want to essentially set up target of generating at least one new guest, somebody at least coming in to experience what we do for every client that we have in our business. On average, if you’ve got a hundred clients, we should be able to generate a hundred guests over the course of the year. If we have a strong referral plan in place. And that’s something we talk a lot about in our coaching programs, because we want to market from the inside out, those people are going to be, they’re going to, I mean, we’ve tracked this for years, highest lifetime client value. They’re most likely to refer themselves. They have the longest span of being a continued client. So we want to start with reviews. I mean, with referrals, the next thing we want to move to is we want to generate as many reviews as we possibly can. We want social proof and testimonials are great. We want before and afters and all that sort of stuff. But somebody has to be looking for your specific business to CA a before and after. Whereas the difference would be, if somebody he’s just looking for a solution, they go to Google. The first thing they’re going to see is the Google, my business stuff with reviews, and they don’t have to meet even aware of your specific business to find you and start to learn about you.So making sure that we have a lot of reviews in place, and then third go out there and build more direct relationships. You know, now we’re, we’re at a point where in, in most of the markets in the US you know, things are starting to relax. You can get out to do more organic networking, but make sure that your learning about the people in your life, whether they’re parents, of fellow kids in your kid’s class, or on sports teams, whether they’re people you go to church with, whether there are people that are in your neighborhoods, start to build more relationships. Because if you’re aware of what’s going on in people’s lives, what’s important to them, how you can help. And they’re aware of the services that you provide and the things that you do, and your willingness to be helpful, be a servant to them. You’re going to have so much more success now. Yeah, we can get into dozens of other tactics.
Like I said, I mean, we’ve done everything from lead boxes to mean, I signed up 19 people one day for a health club pre-sale standing in front of Walmart. So we’ve done all sorts of other things. And there are plenty of other ways that you can go. But if you’re looking for the best bang for the buck, these three things, revert referrals, reviews, and relationships are the place to start. If you do that, Facebook ads are just icing on the cake.
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