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Border West Digital Marketing

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  • Eric N Allen
  • February 28, 2020 06:09:59 PM
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A Little About Us

Border West is a digital marketing agency in Austin, helping businesses grow across the United States. Our client base is small to medium sized contractors, online retailers, medical professionals, and movers, among others. We create specialized digital marketing strategies centered around pay per click, search engine optimization, and social media. We are a certified Google partner that takes a personalized approach to online marketing, building relationships and really getting to know our clients and their businesses. We require no contracts and have some of the most reasonable fees in the industry. Our Google Ad campaigns continuously beat out ads from companies with much higher budgets and management fees.

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    Marketing in a Recession-Coronavirus Era Business Promotion

    In an Economic Recession, You Need Marketing More Than Ever At the time of writing this post, we’re currently in, what looks like the beginning of an extended worldwide crisis. Most of the country is on recommended or state ordered lockdown due … Continued The post Marketing in a Recession-Coronavirus Era Business Promotion appeared first on Border West Digital...

    In an Economic Recession,
    You Need Marketing More Than Ever

    face mask statue of liberty coronavirus recession marketing

    At the time of writing this post, we’re currently in, what looks like the beginning of an extended worldwide crisis. Most of the country is on recommended or state ordered lockdown due to the Coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19), and for the first time in the US, most bars, restaurants, stores, and streets are completely deserted. The stock market has been crashing for over a month with no signs of a bottom. In the best case scenario, the Coronavirus pandemic will cause damage that will disable the economy in most areas for only a few months. Currently, that seems very unlikely.

    Many industries will undoubtedly suffer countless business closings, and nearly all will have major economic setbacks. Social distancing and self quarantines have all but decimated the service and restaurant industries. However, much of the damage can be lessened by making quick, smart decisions. Many restaurants have quickly transitioned to carryout and delivery sales in order to weather the economic storm. Some are even taking advantage of new regulations allowing them to sell alcoholic drinks to go.

     

    With the longest bull market in history just ending, we’ve forgotten what it’s like to struggle with marketing in a recession. Success now depends less on simply finding your success amongst your competitors, and more on staying afloat in your specific industry.

    Acceptance
    Yes, The 2020 Recession is Happening

    Accepting the hard, inevitable fact that the days of constant growth are over is the first step of finding success with recession marketing. While business owners all over the United States are watching and waiting, those that recognize the severity of the situation early have a much better chance of coming out ahead. The economic crisis we’re currently experiencing in March of 2020 is similar to a shipwreck; while many are stunned, watching the boat sink beneath their feet, there are a heroic few that immediately snap into action. Being one of those fast thinkers is who you want to be.

    Whether or not the economy is currently in a recession isn’t yet proven, but it’s hard for anyone who has any sense of the market to think otherwise. But even on the off chance that it isn’t, there is still a huge portion of the US with limited or no income. 

    Even more importantly, a huge portion of the population is basically stuck at home with little outside interaction, most of which isn’t recreational. Children are at home adopting an entirely new formula for learning, which also requires parental assistance, something most parents aren’t used to. And all of this is happening in what is normally the best time of year for vacations, sunshine, and fun.

    The fact is, life in the US, and around the world, is going to change dramatically for the indefinite future. Accepting this will put you miles ahead of the onlookers watching their ship slowly sink into the abyss. 

    Marketing in a Recession is
    Predicting the Future

    recession marketing crystal ball

    We’ve hopefully come to agreement that things are going to change dramatically. All we have to do next is look into our crystal ball and see what the future will bring.

    There’s often a misconception that sales and marketing are the same things. They may seem similar, but in essence, they both are necessary in their own distinct forms. Marketing is putting your product or service in front of potential customers. Sales is the process of getting them to purchase said product or service. 

    In a recession, marketing takes on a whole new meaning in most industries. Being able to have a strong guess for how consumers will still be purchasing in a downturn allows businesses to strategize correctly. 

    Let me give an example; I spoke recently to a travel blogger that was upset because his website traffic had disappeared overnight. Along with cruise lines docking for months and Nevada putting a halt on casinos, there are literal travel bans going on right now. 

    As someone who is in digital marketing, I analyzed his problem. I came to the conclusion that camping and road trips (vacations that adhere to social distancing) are going to be very relevant in the coming months. As families struggle to adjust to these new lifestyles, and assist their children with finishing up the school year, they’re going to need some reprieve or they’ll go nuts. While I don’t see Disney or the amusement parks fully opening for business, or any normal vacations for that matter, I could see a camping trip being a way for a family to have some sort of a vacation while still keeping themselves safe. 

    I guess we’ll see if I’m right in the coming months.

    coronavirus national parks waive fees
    National Parks Waive Entrance Fees to Promote Coronavirus Social Distancing

    Rethinking Your Marketing Strategy in a Recession

    The South By Southwest festival in Austin was officially cancelled on March 6th, but already many huge companies had backed out. It’s not difficult to imagine the amount of revenue the city of Austin had to forgo due to this, but that pain is felt down the line in countless areas.

    Servers and bartenders missed out on a substantial portion of their yearly income; Uber and Lyft drivers were suddenly not getting fares; service workers who set up stages, park cars, and offer demos were dismissed. Small businesses that print banners and signs suddenly had piles of unneeded products sitting around.

    One of the hardest areas hit by the coronavirus cancellation were the festival attendees. Not necessarily large corporations like Facebook and Netflix, but all of the other thousands of smaller entities hoping to gain much needed publicity and contacts. Films that were scheduled to debut, apps recently developed and looking for investments, and bands hoping to get noticed during the SXSW music festival that followed. 

    For many, the missed opportunity will be devastating. Careers are made and amazing ideas discovered during events like South by Southwest. Now, if they want to have any hope of success, they need to embrace recession marketing and find new ways to reach their potential audience. For many software developers, artists, and tech companies, simply waiting it out isn’t an option. They need to be creative, determined, and fearless with their marketing strategy, lest they fall off completely.

    Trimming the Fat
    (and Some of the Meat)

    Since we’re mostly discussing marketing during a recession, I’ll try to limit this next section to budget cuts in that area. It’s pretty obvious that less revenue will result in some hard decisions concerning departments like staffing and hours, and even the number of physical locations.

    If you have a decent digital marketing manager, you probably have your marketing and advertising budget spread out across many mediums. Multiple areas of advertising, with digital and print, as well as a strong social media presence and SEO. And if you’re like most businesses, you’re normal marketing probably includes every product and service that you offer. Most likely you advertise and promote them in all available mediums. 

    In an economic recession, you’re going to need to take that marketing plan, wad it into the tightest ball you can, and toss it in the nearest trash can. Some of what you’ve been doing previously might still be relevant, but most will need to be completely rethought. At the very least, budgets will need to be modified.

    When marketing in an economic downturn, you need to focus on what’s bringing you the most (or any) revenue, and dramatically reduce the rest. Even if your industry isn’t directly affected currently, you don’t want to waste marketing dollars on trying to unveil a new product or service unless you’re certain it will perform well under the circumstances. Plus, when beginning a new marketing campaign, the data it produces in the beginning shapes the strategy throughout. In a recession, marketing data will be wildly different from what it would normally be.

    Our company, Border West, creates and manages digital marketing for clients across many industries. But we also manage our own. We have several clients in the golf industry and have worked with others in the past, so we’re very familiar with golf course marketing. We have several blogs on our own site for advertising golf courses, as well as social media and Google Ads for golf courses. 

    When the stock market began to tank, we immediately paused our golf course ads. All of the blogs still generate interest organically through search engine optimization, but any marketing that we were spending money on that was golf related, we shut down. Our thinking was, most people who own golf courses are most likely invested in the stock market. We wanted to allow it to stabilize before attempting to find more golf related clients to run digital marketing for.

    On the other hand, many of our clients are contractors in the home improvement and construction industries. The Google Ads for contractors that we were running, trying to find more clients, we actually increased. Based on careful analysis of the industries, as well as the performance of our current clients, we decided that there is still going to be strong interest in home improvement. Contractor marketing in a recession is still going to be fruitful for the near future, especially with people at home, bored, staring at walls that need to be painted. 

    Which leads us into our next step in successful recession marketing:

    Prestige Insulation & Drywall Website
    Prestige Insulation in Ohio-A Border West client that's still doing great business

    Versatility
    The Key to Prospering in a Down Economy

    This next step is what will truly allow a business to thrive in an economic recession. The ability to quickly change direction towards whichever ways the market decides to shift. This will be the difference between barely staying afloat in a recession or coming out on top. 

    Before the coronavirus pandemic, no one would have imagined in a million years that it would be impossible to get toilet paper or hand sanitizer in 2020. Or that surgical masks would be on a months long back-order. 

    I’m not saying that opening a toilet paper factory is the best idea (hopefully, that insanity is over soon), but if your business has the ability to identify and supply whatever the next need is, you’re going to be in a great position. Being able to quickly market to that need (what Border West does) is where smart companies shine while others shut down.

    Now, please don’t misunderstand; we’re in no way suggesting that any businesses take advantage of people. Especially when they’re in a less that optimal situation, which pretty much all of us are right now. But being able to provide a necessary product or service to people who suddenly need it is one of the most rewarding situations most business owners will ever encounter. 

    As I said before, many of our clients are contractors. Not one of them specifically specializes in disaster relief in any way. It’s not on their websites and they certainly don’t promote it. With that being said, if they have the ability to fix a roof after a hail storm, we attempt to market that ability. If you’re an honest business owner who can perform a needed service in a time of need, you almost have an obligation to fill that need. Because if you don’t, there are plenty of less reputable pop-up companies that are more than happy to jump in and take advantage of people.  

    Past Client Outreach

    coronavirus recession email outreach

    This can be a touchy subject in some industries. Reaching out to past clients with hopes of soliciting more sales can seem poorly timed and insensitive. Since the coronavirus outbreak the sales message boards have been filled with negativity, and for good reason. In a crisis that greatly affects the health and finances of so many, very few people will respond positively to a blatant sales call.

    But in the same sense, if you have something of value to add to their lives in a time of need, it’s perfectly fine to offer it. 

    Many products and services are genuinely beneficial to people and don’t necessarily need to be sold. That doesn’t mean that you can’t send a well wishing email offering a discount or promotion to help with the cost.

    As I said, this is only a good idea with the right product, offer, and message. If you don’t believe me, check your spam folder right now and look at the some of the emails. You’ll quickly see the wrong way to try to acquire new business during a crisis.

    Helping the Community

    Marketing isn’t always about just making money. Much of what the most successful companies spend a large portion of their advertising budget on is branding. It’s why companies that everyone’s already familiar with spend millions on Super Bowl commercials.

    Depending on your specific industry, your best recession based marketing could just be being charitable with your product or service. For instance, some cell phone providers have removed data caps on their plans to ensure that those suffering financially don’t lose the ability to stay connected. The financial costs of these companies doing the right thing will most likely be far less than the business that their competitors lose because of it.

    Effective marketing, especially in an economic recession, is about ideas. Every situation and industry is different, but there are very rarely instances where there’s absolutely nothing a business can do to stay afloat in hard times. Examples would be mismanagement in the past when the economy was booming (see the airline industry) and poor leadership when it’s time to take drastic measures to right the ship (see companies that are making poor decisions right now).

    Partnering With Other Businesses

    This area of recession marketing may be further down the road, but as the downturn progresses, it can be vital to your survival to partner up. Finding former competitors who are struggling and pooling your resources can provide a burst of much needed capital in other areas. 

    Partnering with another company can seem like a source of weakness. After all, our businesses are an extension of ourselves. Our years of dedication, sacrifice, and ingenuity are what enabled us to be successful. Many of us, including myself, created and built our companies with little outside help. Allowing someone else to profit off of our hard work is tantamount to a slap across the face. 

    In a thriving economy, this is all well and good. But in a recession, advantages need to be sought wherever possible. Having a strong marketing team can assist with this greatly. 

    Much of this can be done with referrals and split marketing costs. Let’s say you own a drywall business. Finding a company that does indoor painting and marketing together can help to offset costs while still providing the same, or better results. 

    This is also a great time to contact related businesses and encourage referral sharing. In our digital marketing company, we often work with other web design companies who provide specialized websites that we ourselves don’t have the time to create. We send them leads for the websites when we come across them, and they refer companies that want to do search engine optimization and pay per click ads. It’s a mutually beneficial relationship, plus the client feels more satisfied because they know they’re getting the best service from all areas.

    Hiring a Marketing Professional

    It’s no secret that even in the best economy, finding success with digital marketing is difficult. In a recession, you definitely can’t just learn as you go. Your business needs a professional digital marketing company equipped to handle recession driven scenarios. You need an agency that knows how to think outside the box, predicting shifts in consumer needs, and capitalizing in the areas that your company has the most chance of success.

    You need Border West.

    Finding a digital marketing agency that you trust to give you an honest plan with pricing that works is imperative. This could be the difference between staying open and boarding up the windows. The problem with many marketing agencies, especially in an economic recession, is that they are overly positive about promoting businesses. That positivity can be too overreaching in a bear market. 

    Border West is founded on complete transparency, and it’s helped us thrive. We don’t make it a habit to sell clients services that aren’t in their best interest. A coronavirus induced recession isn’t going to change that. We’ll be straightforward, honest, and develop a solid, aggressive plan if it’s going to work. What we won’t do is tell a client that we can accomplish something that is unlikely or impossible in the current situation. 

    If there’s a way to promote your business in this spiraling economy, we’ll find it and help you capture as much of it as possible. But if we can’t help, we’ll elbow bump (no hand shaking during quarantine) and part ways amicably.

    Conclusion

    The upcoming recession caused by the Coronavirus pandemic is far beyond anything this world has ever seen. Any marketing agency that promises that they know exactly what to do is lying. The best of us can predict where consumer spending will shift in the short term, but there’s no telling what things will look like in a year. 

    Your best bet is to find a digital marketing agency that’s versatile, smart, honest, and ambitious as hell. That’s going to be Border West from Austin, Texas.

    The post Marketing in a Recession-Coronavirus Era Business Promotion appeared first on Border West Digital Marketing.


    8 Red Flags When Looking for an Entry Level Sales Position

    8 Red Flags When Looking for an Entry Level Sales Position Sales is one of the very few career choices where income potential is fairly unlimited. It’s also one of the few promising careers that one can get started in … Continued The post 8 Red Flags When Looking for an Entry Level Sales Position appeared first on Border West Digital...

    8 Red Flags When Looking for an Entry Level Sales Position

    Red Flags in Sales

    Sales is one of the very few career choices where income potential is fairly unlimited. It’s also one of the few promising careers that one can get started in with little or no training and education. There are plenty of entry level sales people who have extremely lucrative careers that have never had any secondary education.

     

    While sales can seem like a career that’s easy to get started in, there are some employers that take advantage of the inexperience of entry level salespeople. Many of them offer incentives that seem too good to be true, because in all actuality, they are. 

     

    A sales career can provide opportunities that may be unavailable elsewhere. It can be a place where someone like an experienced bartender can hone their people skills into traits of a successful salesperson. But it can also be a discouraging journey if the wrong path is taken.

     

    Below are some important red flags to look for in potential employers. These words of caution are especially true if you’re looking for your first sales job. Knowing to watch out for certain signs can save years of disappointment, as well as set you in the right direction for a successful career in sales.

    1. Commission Only

    Generally, with any sales position, commissions should make up the majority of the income. Once you’ve exceeded any base pay, the job is essentially all commission. 

    So why is it important to watch out for commission only jobs in an entry level sales position?

    The answer lies in how much the company is willing to invest in the growth of their employees.

    If a company offers a base salary, that means they’re putting faith in a new hire. They believe in their product and training process enough to spend money when there’s no guarantee they’ll ever recoup any of it. A base salary demonstrates their confidence in the new hire and the company. They believe that, with their training, a new employee will generate enough income in the future to make it worth the investment. 

    Alternatively, a commission only company may not care if a new employee is successful at all. Many of these companies have a very high turnover rate. This could be due to a poor product, company, or inability to make much money. They’re more than willing to hire an inexperienced salesperson for a position knowing there’s a strong possibility that they’ll fail. This is because they have very little, if anything to lose.

    Commission only sales positions aren’t always a red flag, but someone new to sales should be extremely cautious. At the very least, they should be aware of the risk they’re undertaking.

    2. Up Front Costs

    Something that’s become increasingly common with certain types of positions is requiring a salesperson to purchase their inventory. This is extremely common in multilevel marketing platforms, which have been frequently compared to pyramid schemes

    They lure inexperienced sales people in with tales of successful members living lives of luxury. One common denominator with most multi level marketing jobs is the need to purchase items up front. 

    The truth is, study after study have shown that very few people make money with these types of sales. Often, the salespeople invest a significant portion of their own money and are unable to sell the product. It ends up costing money to have the job.

    Other upfront costs to be aware of are the actual expenses required to do the job that you’re applying for. This is extremely relevant with sales positions that require in home or in store demonstrations, even if the region you’ll be selling in is local. Doing demonstrations means that you will need to travel to the locations of potential customers in order to try to sell your product. Accounting for gas, wear and tear on your vehicle, and travel time can make a big difference on how much you can actually make at a job like this.

    3. Where Do They Get Their Leads?

    How a company generates sales leads is crucial to the salesperson’s success. This is especially true in sales positions like the ones we just described. A company’s process for lead generation goes hand in hand with the level of interest of people you’ll be selling to. 

    Lead generation is often done by cold calling homeowners, sending canvassers door to door, or online sign ups. The issue with collecting leads like this is that the potential customer is often misled to get them to agree to the sales demonstration.

    Sometimes, the entry level sales job you’re applying for is actually a lead generation position like this. There is the potential to make money and build a career at these types of positions. But this is the exception, not the rule. More often, a person who’s interested in a sales career will convince themselves that this is just a rite of passage in this industry. They’ll be sent door to door with little training and attempt to sway homeowners into saying yes to a demo. Or they’ll be glued to a phone that automatically dials random numbers non stop all day, getting hung up on and cursed at while repeating the same pitch over and over.

    Just because a job is door to door or requires cold calling doesn’t mean that it is with a disreputable company. The majority of seasoned sales professionals have done a job similar to this at one point in their career. But it’s important to make sure what you’ll be doing actually is sales and not just collecting leads for other salespeople to make money off of. And there needs to be a clear and accessible path towards promotion within the company.

    4. Always Hiring

    Unless a business is going through Amazon level expansion, having a help wanted ad posted constantly is almost always a bad sign. Seeing the same job listed for a long period of time means they either can’t hire employees or keep them. Whatever the reason, tread lightly with companies like this. 

    A business not being able to retain employees can be for a number of reasons, few of which are positive. It could be because of staff or management causing a toxic workplace. It may be because of a poor, outdated, or overpriced product that’s difficult to sell. Or it could be due to company policies that are unfavorable to employees, like bad benefits, hours, or pay structure.

    Help Wanted Sales

    Alternatively, if they can’t hire anyone, this could be an even bigger red flag. The company may have a reputation for being a bad place to work for any number of reasons. Or maybe they offer little or no base and a very bad commission structure. It’s also possible that the interviewers are abrasive and push candidates away. Either way, an employer that is constantly hiring is a red flag that an inexperienced sales candidate should walk away from in a hurry.

    5. Negative Glassdoor Reviews (and Fake Ones)

    Thanks to the internet, there are countless advantages for a person looking for a job that were available in the past. One of the most beneficial being employee reviews on the positions offered within a company. Glassdoor and Indeed, among other job board sites, provide an area for past and present employees to review the companies they work or worked for. This information can be an invaluable resource for an entry level salesperson. 

    Company reviews often provide information on the actual income a salesperson can make, both from the base pay and on target earnings (expected total pay with commissions). There are also reviews about management, work conditions, hours, environment, and many other tidbits of information.

    Something to be cautious of is reviews that are not written in good faith. Job posting sites have strong rules about companies requesting positive reviews from employees, but this can be very hard to regulate. One way potential employees can look for this is be wary of the dates and employment status on the reviews. If there are several reviews posted in a very close time frame from people that all still work at the company, they were probably solicited by the business to raise their ranking. While this may not necessarily be always bad, it is certainly a red flag. If they’re less than honest with review based on the working conditions, where else are they misleading potential job candidates?

    6. Excessive Entry Level Sales Requirements

    Entry level positions requiring high levels of experience requirements are one of the biggest pet peeves of job seekers. This can be especially true in sales positions. 

    Often, many job postings require degrees and/or experience that is completely unnecessary for the position advertised. A bachelor’s degree requirement for an entry level sales position unrelated to the product being sold makes very little sense. Also, asking for several years of experience for an entry level sales position seems excessive as well.

    These requirements are often made by the job recruiters posting the positions. Those recruiters are generally hired by companies to fill open positions, and their pay often directly correlates with how long the new hire retains employment. For the recruiters, it makes sense to conclude that someone who’s gone through several years of college or worked at other sales positions for years is more likely to stay at this job. 

    Just remember, postings requiring excessive experience are made by gatekeepers. Getting past these recruiters will generally put you in contact with a sales manager in the second interview. This is the person that has the power to offer you a job. Even if you don’t possess every one of the requirements, take a chance and apply anyway. You may be surprised.

    7. Capped Commissions

    This next red flag is something that shouldn’t even have to be on this list. Unfortunately, some companies still limit a salesperson’s potential with a commission cap. Because of this, it’s crucial to find out if a potential employer caps commissions.

    If you’re not familiar with what this means, a commission cap is a limit on how much an employee can make in sales over a period of time. Once a salesperson reaches their cap, they are still expected to sell more, but will receive no additional compensation. A company stating that they cap commissions in an interview will cause nearly any experienced salesperson to walk out immediately. 

    There is no logical justification for limiting commissions if an employee continues to sell more and make the company money. Usually a capped commission is enacted by someone in the company who has no experience in sales. They are looking for any possible way to make the company more profitable, even at the expense of the employees. This is also the easiest way to tell how they value their staff. Take this as a sign and move on.

    8. No Work/Life Balance

    It’s very important to remember that when you’re interviewing for a sales position, the person doing the interview is probably very experienced in sales. What this means is that they’re probably selling you on all the great things about the job, while avoiding any negatives. Often, an experienced salesperson will do this without even realizing it. That’s why it’s up to you to ask the right questions about your potential place of employment.

    How many hours per day and per week required to meet goals is one of the most important questions. $60,000 per year is great money for an entry level sales position, especially if you’re starting out with no experience. It’s not so good if you have to work six days per week, twelve hours per day. 

    This should also include the time it takes to commute to the location of your potential customers. Many sales territories can cover large areas, sometimes even multiple states. It’s not uncommon for salespeople to travel three or more hours to an appointment. It’s also not unheard of for them to have several appointments per day. 

    Even if travel isn’t involved, you should find out how many hours the top sellers work to reach that mark. Most sales floors have some type of board with employee sales goals and stats listed. Interviewers will proudly point to the top of the list and make potential employees’ mouths water. They’ll see monthly commissions of several thousand dollars and start dreaming about a new car. What won’t be shown is whether top sales performers ever get time outside of work in which to enjoy these luxuries.

    Conclusion

    The purpose of this article isn’t to scare or dissuade anyone from switching to a sales career. Only to help newcomers avoid some of the pitfalls that many tenured sales professionals had to learn the hard way. In sales, perseverance, dedication, and hard work can lead to unlimited earning potential. Making smart choices along the way will help you achieve that potential faster and with a much smoother journey.

    The post 8 Red Flags When Looking for an Entry Level Sales Position appeared first on Border West Digital Marketing.


    Starting a Successful Contractor Business With Digital Marketing

    Steps to Start a Successful Contractor Business Through Digital Marketing In less than a year, we created a successful insulation and drywall business through the power of the internet. It developed from a simple conversation to a branded company pulling home improvement … Continued The post Starting a Successful Contractor Business With Digital Marketing appeared first on Border West Digital...

    Steps to Start a Successful Contractor Business Through Digital Marketing

    Truck for Starting a New Contractor Business

    In less than a year, we created a successful insulation and drywall business through the power of the internet. It developed from a simple conversation to a branded company pulling home improvement leads in just a few months. 

    We didn’t use any lead sharing websites like Home Advisor, or any free advertising sites like Craigslist. 

    We used our abilities as a professional digital marketing agency in Austin to create a business in Mansfield, Ohio from the ground up. 

    Below is the step by step process of how our company Border West started a contractor business. This is a guide that will show you exactly how we will not only help get your business started, but make sure it’s successful. 

    Got Questions ? 

    We can help!

    We know there’s like a gazillion websites out there that claim to have all the answers for making your website “show up first on Google”

    Maybe you just have a few questions to see what are the best options for your company

    Maybe you have absolutely no idea where to start

    Call Border West at (512) 516-9867, or click the button and we can discuss it through email

    We’ll answer any questions and see if maybe we can help. If we can’t, we’ll try to steer you in the right direction.

    No pressure, no contracts, no over-inflated promises. Just honest answers.

    The above chart shows the failure rate for new small businesses. As you can see, the odds of your new business being successful drop significantly in the first few years. Some industries, like construction, have even higher than average failure rates.

    1. Taking Care of Legal Issues

    Ideally, starting a new business would be a simple step-by-step process. But as with many parts of owning a small business, things rarely go as planned. 

    The fact is, many owners end up running a business before they really intend to. A lot of owners start off doing side projects for people they know part time. Maybe they have a hobby where they start selling products and it begins to build revenue.

    Whether you plan your new business venture with complete precision, or end up starting it because you’re busy enough to do it full time, you need to get legal ASAP.

    What does this mean? 

    It means doing all the things actual business owners do to keep the government, the IRS, the law, and unhappy customers off their backs. 

    More specifically, it means taking care of the following things before they bite you in the ass:

    Business Licensing

    The rules for getting your business licenses and registering your business are different in every state. Since we’re talking about contractors, there are hundreds of different industries with different requirements.

    Border West is in no way attempting to provide any legal advice other than FIND OUT WHAT YOU NEED TO DO IN YOUR STATE!

    The best way to find out the requirements for your specific industry is go start with Google. In Texas, where we’re located, there are some loose requirements for licensing. Most businesses don’t need a license at all. But, even if you live here in Texas, you need to make sure. 

    In Ohio, where we started Prestige, the licensing is different. So is every other state. The point is, make sure you find out what licenses you need and get them. The consequences could be stiff fines, or worse.

    DBA (What's Your Name?)

    A DBA, or Doing Business As, is another area you want to deal with right away. In Austin, ours is set up through the Travis County Clerk of Courts. Generally, the clerk of courts in your county would be where you register your small business DBA. 

    A DBA is just the legal name of your business. While there are some exceptions for needing one such as the business being your actual name, you almost always need to register. 

    It’s very important that you get your DBA registered BEFORE you start putting your company name on everything. The reason being, if someone in your state has used the name already, they can sue you for copying it. This could mean having to change it or even a serious lawsuit that could cost a lot of money. 

    This may not seem like a big deal if you’re a one man insulation contractor company. But what happens when you grow and you have several trucks with the name Ace Insulation that just happens to be owned by a huge company? 

    You’ll have to change the name. This means confusing customers, changing any place your name is listed online, repainting trucks, getting new business cards……you get the idea.

    A DBA is usually only around $20. It can be done online. It’s super easy. 

    Insurance

    We’re not going to spend too much time on liability insurance because it differs so much between industries and providers. Getting general liability insurance for your contracting business is absolutely something you should take care of immediately.

    Yes, liability insurance for contractors is expensive. And yes, there are many contractors that operate without liability insurance. But if you have any intention of your contracting company being successful, bite the bullet and get yourself insured. 

    The biggest problem with putting it off is that the longer you do, the easier it is to convince yourself that you don’t need it. But it’s not fair to your customers or yourself to go without insurance. Any major issue will probably end up costing the customer a lot of money and most likely put you out of business. 

    These legalities are generally something that our clients at Border West have to take care of on their own. There are circumstances where we can help provide contractors information on how to register their DBA, for instance. But we wouldn’t be allowed to actually sign anyone up for insurance, licenses, or any company name registrations.

    2. Contractor Listing on Google Maps

    Insulation Contractor Google Maps Listing

    This is where the contractor digital marketing begins to take place. The first thing we did with Prestige Insulation & Drywall was sign up for a Google Maps listing.

    Even before building a website.

    There are a couple of reasons for this, but the main one is that a Google Maps listing takes about a week to get processed. 

    When we sign up a new business, we have to have a letter mailed to your business address to confirm the location. This takes about 5 days. After you get the letter, you’ll have to enter a code on it. Verifying this takes another day or so.  

    After the contractor listing is verified, we begin to add relevant information, such as hours and additional services. We’ll also create infographics for your company and post them along with photos and logos. 

    We’ll generate a link for customers to review your company and we’ll ask that you have some past clients leave some nice reviews. Great reviews are what drives Google Maps listings, and contractors with multiple 5 star reviews get their business shown a lot more than those who don’t have any. 

    Plus, customers seeing a well reviewed contractor are more likely to see them as a reputable business and use their services.

    In Mansfield, where we started Prestige, there were very few listings on Google Maps for insulation and drywall contractors. By getting them listed, getting reviews right away, adding photos and logos, and posting deals, we got them ranked pretty high right away. 

    Insulation Contractor top of Google Maps Listing

    The above screenshot is from a search for insulation contractors in Mansfield, Ohio. What you see is the absolute top of the page (our search was from Austin, which has some effect). 

    Our company is the first listing on Maps, and because of our location, and lack of much competition in that area, the Maps listing for insulation contractors is the first thing shown on the page!

    The beauty of this is, while we continue to build and do SEO on the Prestige website, this Google Maps listing is bringing in insulation and drywall customers.

    3. Building a Contractor Website

    Prestige Insulation & Drywall Website

    A well designed and functioning website can be one of the most important lead generating tools for a contractor. 

    A poorly built website is generally nothing more than a waste of time.

    Digital marketing companies like ours have been building websites for contractors since AOL was mailing free trials. Some have become part of the foundation for large companies. Most of them got buried in some corner of the internet until their hosting expired.

    Many of these digital marketing agencies that specialize in contractor websites seem to forget the purpose of the website. A drywall contractor isn’t going to need or want a several thousand dollar website. Even if they can afford it, how many web pages do you need to discuss drywall installation?

    One of the main reasons contractors like us and continue to use Border West for years is that we don’t try to sell them crap they don’t need.

    We build contractor websites that perform well on Google, are very user friendly, look professional, and SELL THEIR SERVICES.

    Depending on specifics, we can generally design and build a contractor website for a few hundred dollars. This will function well and make their business look professional. It will also have a dynamite quote request form (the most important page on the website).

    Now, will this website fly out the gate and begin filling up with requests for work estimates? Unless you’re in an area where a hurricane just hit and you’re the only water damage contractor, probably not. 

    But if the foundation is built correctly, the rest of the work Border West does on your digital marketing will really kick ass.

    4. Pay Per Click Contractor Ads

    As much as some company owners we’ve spoken to over the years are against using any contractor advertising, all they’re doing is missing out on business.

    We have clients that have siding contractor PPC ads on Google that haven’t left the front page in years. Even though they have the top Google Maps and a website on the first page of Google for siding installers, they still get a huge portion of their siding jobs from local pay per click advertising

    premium siding and painting austin pay per click ad

    In larger cities some industries are extremely competitive with hundreds of other companies vying for leads. We work with a mover in a city like this that gets nearly all of their moving leads from PPC

    Because we kick butt at creating winning pay per click campaigns, we’re able to compete against huge nationwide corporations with our PPC ads. 

    Many of these large moving companies invest millions into digital marketing, including web design and pay per click. You have to have extensive knowledge and experience to perform against them organically and on paid searches. 

    Hiring Border West as your digital marketing agency will pay for itself and more in a very short time, especially with PPC.

    Instant Results with Contractor PPC Ads

    When we got the Prestige website built, the first thing we did was set up new accounts on Google Ads (AdWords) and Microsoft Ads (Bing Ads). This way we were guaranteed to start getting customer job leads almost immediately.

    In an area like Mansfield, where Prestige is doing business, there aren’t many other insulation and drywall companies running ads. This means that we can generally run PPC ads for around $1 per click. In Austin, for a similar business, $3 per click is very difficult.

     

    It also means that the PPC ads don’t have any other ads to compete with, so they go to the top of the first page of Google search for drywall contractor searches. 

    But even with competition, we can start pulling contractor leads within a week, usually, from our first conversation. This isn’t BS traffic either. These are people in your industry who searched for a contractor and need your services.

    This is how the most successful contracting companies do business, and it works very well.

    Pay Per Click That Can Turn on a Dime

    There was a large storm in the area that Prestige does business in last Thanksgiving. It caused quite a bit of damage with downed trees and branches everywhere. People’s backyards were full of brush and their driveways were blocked.

    Prestige didn’t do any marketing for tree removal previously, but we decided to jump into the business anyway. There was a huge need for it in that area. 

    Border West created a few tree removal pay per click ads on their account. We got them approved and running within a couple of hours. 

    While storm clean up PPC ads were processing, we created a tree removal and yard clean up page. It wasn’t a work of art, but it was a great landing page for our PPC ads. 

    In a matter of a couple of hours, our company was showing at the top of Google for searches relating to tree removal services and yard clean up. Being able to have that kind of real time control over the message your contracting company is sending to its customers is what Border West brings to the table.

    Call us and we’ll do the same for your business.

    When your website is firing on all cylinders your traffic should be divided pretty equally. Maybe not as equally as this, but you get the idea.

    5. Creating Content for Contractor SEO

    Once we got Prestige bringing in insulation and drywall leads from Google Maps and pay per click ads, we started thinking about long term. 

    The content (words and stuff) that you have on your website is what tells Google the subject. The better your content describes what customers are searching for, the more likely your website is to show up on searches. 

    With some contractors SEO is very straightforward. In Ohio, insulation companies aren’t that abundant, which is crazy because it’s so freaking cold! In the areas not located in a large city, it’s possible to show up pretty high on Google for just terms like insulation contractor.

    Prestige Insulation Google SEO Listing

    If you want to do the same thing in Columbus or Cleveland, it’s going to take some time for the first page.

    What we will do is focus on more detailed and long tail keywords. This gives us a better shot at showing up for searches that our customers are looking for anyway. 

    For example, a search for drywall contractors in your area has tons of competition. There will be listings from Thumbtack and Home Advisor, as well as contractors from cities 100 miles away. 

    But a search for water damage drywall repair is a lot more condensed and detailed. 

    water damage drywall repair SEO listing

    This also means it’s a lot easier and faster to show up on the front page of Google. 

    When Border West begins SEO for a contractor, the main focus is on content. How good yours is and how we’re going to add to it. Ideally, we would design your website, so the SEO would be taken care of already. Then, like with Prestige, all we do is add a steady diet of search engine optimized content and watch your contractor website rise up Google’s ranks.

    6. Expanding the Contracting Business

    When we first started Prestige last year, we only focused on insulation installation. This is why the URL is prestigeinsulation.com. We knew we would expand the business, but we focused on one area at a time.

    Gradually, we began to expand the focus of our digital marketing. We moved into radiant barrier, attic ventilation, spray foam, skylights, and so on. Once we were set on the areas of insulation we wanted to cover, then we changed our overall focus to Insulation & Drywall. 

    Our business name is set as Prestige Insulation on the DBA, and that’s what it will stay. This doesn’t stop us from adding the drywall part to our name on the website. We add some minor changes on the website, then begin creating content and pay per click ads for drywall contractors. 

    Aside from just adding more services to your business, digital marketing for contractors is a long term process. Oftentimes business owners are more interested in SEO over PPC ads because they think that once an agency takes care of search engine optimization for their business, they’re done. In reality, this is far from the truth.

    Just like any other aspect of business, you need to be constantly growing and evolving if you want to maintain your success. If you’re doing something right with your online marketing, it’s only a matter of time before ten other contractors try to copy it. 

    Once you get to the top of that mountain that is the front page of Google, you’re going to have to fight off the competition constantly if you want to stay there. 

    Mountaintop of Google SEO

    Border West is here to help you get there and stay there. We’re the best digital marketing company for contractors because many of our friends and family are in these industries. We understand the cycles, the seasons, and the cutthroat nature of the industry.

    You can start with a PPC competitor analysis where we can check your website against your competition. 

    Or if you’re just starting out and need a new website (or if the one you have sucks), click the link below, contact us here, or call our number. 

    We’re here to help you make money with your business by using our experience with digital marketing to generate contractor leads for your business. Simple as that. Give us a call!

    The post Starting a Successful Contractor Business With Digital Marketing appeared first on Border West Digital Marketing.


    Border West-A Moving Leads Provider Disguised as a Marketing Agency

    All Moving Leads Providers Are Not Created Equal Border West knows the moving industry and we know how to keep your phone ringing with quote requests. Click the button below for more information specific to your company. You’ll be surprised … Continued The post Border West-A Moving Leads Provider Disguised as a Marketing Agency appeared first on Border West Digital...

    All Moving Leads Providers Are Not Created Equal

    Border West knows the moving industry and we know how to keep your phone ringing with quote requests.

    Moving leads provider ads and SEO boxes

    Click the button below for more information specific to your company. You’ll be surprised how easy it is with Border West to keep your moving trucks rolling!

    I Don't Care About All the Tech Stuff
    I Just Want Moving Leads!

    We get it. Your not looking for an education on how to use the internet. You’re just looking for the best moving leads providers.

    Border West is a digital marketing company from Austin that does exactly that. We’ve been doing online moving company advertising since we first started printing business cards. 

    Our company has worked alongside the real estate industry and with movers for a very long time, so we know the business. We’ve also been doing internet advertising in Austin for several years, so we know that business pretty good as well. We know that most business owners in the moving industry mostly care about keeping their business and keeping their customers happy. How those things happen are less important.

    How Border West is Going to Make it Happen

    Every business is different. Other moving leads providers don’t realize that and use the same moving company marketing strategy with every mover they work with. They generally charge a whole lot more than Border West too.

    Before we take a dime of your money, we do a thorough performance report of your business. We’ll also ask things like:

    How many trucks do you have?

    What’s the number of moves per week?

    How many do you want to do?

    Do you do commercial moves?

    Can you do long distance moves?

    Do you do apartment moves or just homes?

    How do you put together your quotes?

    Are you trying to expand or just get more customers?

    Only after thoroughly analyzing your business, we’ll put together our recommendations. Much of our strategy depends on these answers along with your location. We look at the competition and how their companies are utilizing the internet for local moving leads. We also see how the real estate market is in the area you service. 

    After all that, we’ll discuss the best strategy that fits your budget and will provide the best results. First and foremost, we want to get your phone ringing with more quote requests. After that, we can move on to more long term goals.

    Got Questions ? 

    We can help!

    We know there’s like a gazillion websites out there that claim to have all the answers for making your website “show up first on Google”

    Maybe you just have a few questions to see what are the best options for your company

    Maybe you have absolutely no idea where to start

    Call Border West at (512) 516-9867, or click the button and we can discuss it through email

    We’ll answer any questions and see if maybe we can help. If we can’t, we’ll try to steer you in the right direction.

    No pressure, no contracts, no over-inflated promises. Just honest answers.

    Step 1-AdWords Management for Movers

    We said we weren’t going to get too technical, but we should explain our process a little. No, we’re not the only local moving leads provider that knows some magic trick. 

    But we do know AdWords management for movers. Or Google Ads, as it’s now known (Google did this to confuse everyone a couple of years ago). Border West specializes in getting a lot of quote requests for movers with a limited budget. We do this by tons of research, years of experience, and a lot of hard work.

    We’re not the only digital marketing company that can bring your company more business. But we’re faster, less expensive, and more dedicated to our clients than 99% of other online advertising companies out there. 

    We have very low start up fees along with bonus offers provided to us by Google for new clients. Border West always guarantees that we’ll provide qualified, consistent leads, but if you’re ever not happy for any reason, you’re free to fire us with no questions asked.  We’re also always available to be reached by phone or email, and have no problem explaining anything you don’t understand.

    We’re in this to build long term business relationships with our clients through trust and performance. Contact us or give us a call. 

    Step 2-Get Your Mover Website SEO

    SEO or search engine optimization is the next step to keep growing your revenue. Not every mover wants to focus on SEO. Many of them are content with just running online advertising.

    Choosing to focus on SEO depends on what your long term goals are and where you plan to get mover leads in the future. If you want to gradually work on bringing more people to your website month after month, then you need to think about optimizing it.

    How effective SEO will be has a lot to do on the area you’re operating in. Search engine optimization for movers in Austin is going to take a lot of work and time. A quick Google search will show you that competition between movers is pretty thick here. 

    But if you have one of the only companies providing professional moves in your area, you could see results much faster. We set up an website for an insulation and drywall installer in Ohio. The are they were operating in has around 100,000 people. They started seeing organic search results within a couple of months.

    Whether or not you want to focus on search engine optimization or just moving company advertising is up to you. As a moving leads provider, our job is to offer all the options and give recommendations based on your situation. 

    Step 3-Stop Wasting Time and Call Border West!

    We know that going through moving leads providers and finding one to trust is difficult. Every one of them is going to tell you that their system is the best and promise they can get you a bunch of customers. 

    Truthfully, a lot of them probably can. 

    But very few of them actually have any experience working with movers. And hardly any have the hard working, blue collar roots that we do. 

    We work with contractors, movers, insulation installers because we grew up around people doing that type of work. Many of the people we provide digital marketing for are our friends. When I write blogs or create online ads for contractors, it’s easy because I’ve personally worked in that industry.

    Our system at Border West is really simple. Give us a month. If you don’t see the results you want, walk away, no harm no foul. We know we can light your phone up.  

    Digital Marketing and Energy Efficiency

    Our business is a one of the smaller digital marketing companies in Austin, but we know that we all have an effect on the environment. This is why we’ve started Border West Earth, an addition to our company dedicated to Eco Friendly business. 

    Whether your company is here in Austin, or anywhere in the US, if you’re committed to lowering inefficiency, we want to work with you. Any company demonstrating energy efficient practices will receive a 20% discount off of any of their services for the duration of our relationship. 

    The post Border West-A Moving Leads Provider Disguised as a Marketing Agency appeared first on Border West Digital Marketing.


    Finding the Right Pay Per Click Advertising Company for Your Business

    12 Questions to Help Find a Pay Per Click Advertising Company for Your Business When searching for a pay per click company in a city like Austin, the number of options can be mind boggling. A local Google Search for … Continued The post Finding the Right Pay Per Click Advertising Company for Your Business appeared first on Border West Digital...

    12 Questions to Help Find a Pay Per Click Advertising Company for Your Business

    PPC for doctors on Google Maps Austin

    When searching for a pay per click company in a city like Austin, the number of options can be mind boggling. A local Google Search for PPC agency will take you far past the tenth page of listings. So how does a business find a reputable company to manage a pay per click campaign? Answering these 12 questions will help save you time and money, as well as ensure your online marketing success. 

    pay per click management fees

    1. What Does the Pay Per Click Agency Charge?

    PPC Management Fees is first on the list because return on investment is generally the most important factor for most businesses. It’s often true that you get what you pay for, but some PPC agencies have fees that can be astronomical. I’ve heard of companies charging more that 50% of ad spend!  This seems very excessive, no matter what the advertising budget. Exceptions would be for very small budgets in the few hundred dollar range.

    When choosing a pay per click advertising agency, it’s important to know where your money is going. If it’s a smaller company with a solid plan for managing your pay per click campaign(s), then lower management fees are a good thing.

    If it’s a larger agency with multiple locations in different states, costs may be inflated. They may be charging you for their name recognition, and more concerned with their own growth.

    Treat hiring a pay per click advertiser company as you would someone doing home renovations.

    Find out exactly what your total budget is. Then find the best PPC agency within that budget. Don’t adjust the budget unless it makes perfect sense financially. If you do, make the agency show you simply and clearly why it’s absolutely necessary.

    And most importantly, make sure you know exactly what your fees are going towards. Read any agreements and make sure you understand them. You don’t want to be paying to refurnish the agency’s office.

    2. Is There a Minimum Monthly Spend Requirement?

    Monthly budget requirements are something that should be clearly listed on any PPC management company’s website along with fee structure, but rarely is. The account size requirements refer to the monthly ad budget, and are often times nonnegotiable. This means if you want to spend $1,000 per month on your pay per click advertising campaign, and the agency has a $1,500 minimum, they won’t work with you.

    This is a factor that is extremely relevant, and a question that you should ask immediately. If a pay per click advertising company can’t answer this question (or any question about fees) in the first few minutes of the conversation, walk away. Hiding this information from potential clients is a tactic of less reputable PPC companies, similar to a car salesman who refuses to tell you the price. Every business wants their customers to purchase based on value and not just cost. But the fact is, sometimes the product is simply not affordable. 

    Digital marketing can be an extremely lucrative business. Many online advertising agencies start out small, but rapid growth fogs their vision. They get distracted with expansion and begin to care less about the smaller accounts that got them where they are.

    Border West prides ourselves on always helping businesses of any size. Sure, spending $100 per month on Google Ads probably isn’t going to do much. But we’ll never turn away a business with a strong desire and a plan to grow. Moving companies, insulation contractors, and Hardie Siding installers need an experienced digital marketing company as much as anyone.

    Click the link below for more information.

    Got Questions ? 

    We can help!

    We know there’s like a gazillion websites out there that claim to have all the answers for making your website “show up first on Google”

    Maybe you just have a few questions to see what are the best options for your company

    Maybe you have absolutely no idea where to start

    Call Border West at (512) 516-9867, or click the button and we can discuss it through email

    We’ll answer any questions and see if maybe we can help. If we can’t, we’ll try to steer you in the right direction.

    No pressure, no contracts, no over-inflated promises. Just honest answers.

    3. Is It a Local Pay Per Click Advertising Company?

    Finding a local PPC company is extremely important to some of our clients, while others couldn’t care less. This should be something you should take into consideration when choosing who will manage your digital marketing. Sometimes this can relate to the fees and what they’re spending that revenue. Many large marketing agencies have sales floors filled with people that do nothing but cold sales calls. Once they get a bite, the potential client is whisked through a confusing whirlwind. 

    Now, just because a PPC company is local, doesn’t mean that they are reputable. Austin is a huge producer of pay per click advertising companies. Many of these larger corporations have their headquarters here. They still employ “boiler room” style sales tactics focused only on aggressively increasing their own sales.

    I’ve personally worked at these places and I can assure you, the client’s interests are rarely as important as the company’s. If you hear a bell ring in the background on a phone call, along with people cheering, someone just landed a client. As soon as you give them that yes, that bell will ring for you too.

    Saying that all large agencies are bad is not where we’re going with this. But often, the level of service goes down the larger a business becomes. And it can be important to many business owners to have a personal relationship with their marketing company.

    One of our clients, PSP Co. wouldn’t have hired us if they couldn’t have met us first. Hiring a local digital marketing agency  was extremely important to them. They wanted to sit and discuss their business goals with us, which we’ve done many times since. Personally, we prefer this type of relationship too, but it’s not always possible.

    Austin Skyline Best Pay Per Click Advertising

    4. How Transparent is the PPC Management Agency?

    I often overuse the term “transparency” when speaking with potential clients, but with good intention. The actual definition means something that is clear or see-through. In this sense of the word, it’s more about not hiding anything.

    How transparent a PPC agency is with their stats often speaks volumes about the company themselves. They should, at the very least, offer detailed reports once per month. Really, they should be willing to provide pretty much any information about your account whenever you ask.

    Since we started Border West, we’ve heard some ridiculous excuses used by other PPC agencies for not being transparent. One company stated that his Google Ad Manager account was connected to all his clients. He couldn’t tell this particular customer his monthly budget because they were all bunched together. Another PPC company simply said that he never agreed to provide information on where the client’s money was going. Both of these clients have since moved on to Border West for all their digital marketing and seem very happy with their choice.

    Another tactic to watch for is how easy is the information to understand. It’s easy for a PPC professional to flood your inbox with pages of information that only they can comprehend. Google explains some different types of Google Ad reports. A good digital marketing agency should offer easy to read charts with relevant information highlighted. They should also be more than happy to further explain any discrepancies or difficult information. After all, it’s your money.

    5. What Are the Terms and Length of the Contract?

    Many pay per click advertising companies have term requirements for them to do business with a client. These requirements can go from as little as three months, to multiple years, although more than a year is uncommon. This is included in the contract that is signed before they’ll begin a PPC campaign. 

    When starting a new project, it’s very important to give the agency enough time to create a successful campaign. Paying a PPC management company for only one month and expecting amazing results will often lead to disappointment. Generally, we ask that our clients give us at least three months to see the true potential of our digital marketing efforts. Although, we ask this, Border West never requires any term commitments. 

    One thing to be cautions of is long term contracts that only benefit the PPC agency. This is not uncommon and is usually buried deep in the contract somewhere. It can also be legally binding, resulting in a lawsuit that could require you to pay for services you no longer want. If your company is spending a million per year on Google Ads, a two year contract makes sense. If a pay per click advertising agency requires a two year contract for your single truck moving company, find a better one.

    6. Who Will Be Your Point of Contact Within the PPC Agency?

    For some clients, knowing the person they’ll be speaking to with questions or concerns is a top priority. For others, it is irrelevant. They don’t have any intention of being even remotely involved in their ad campaigns and are never going to call anyways.

    For many of our clients at Border West, having a point of contact that you know is what separates us from other internet marketing in Austin. We answer our phones during night and weekend hours, which is often the only time some clients are available.

    Also, being able to call and speak to the same person all the time can be very comforting. As head of accounts, I’m generally the point of contact for all of our clients. I completely understand everything involved in their digital marketing campaigns, and am able to offer real solutions, often immediately. This is because I was involved with them from the first time they spoke to Border West.

    A pay per click advertising agency’s customer service, after they’ve received your payment, is the true definition of their worth. Whenever possible, find out who you’ll be speaking to with issues before choosing a PPC management company. This could be the difference between fast friendly answers or wasted time and frustration every time you call.

    7. Who Will Manage the PPC Account from Your Side?

    While this may not seem important to you, from the standpoint of the PPC manager, it is very relevant. Often times an owner or manager will initiate the conversation and set up the account with the agency. Afterwards, the owner or manager may never speak to the agency again and the point of contact becomes a secretary or someone similar. 

    This can create issues for several reasons. One, the person communicating with the agency needs to be knowledgeable about the campaigns. We’ve had many situations where we’re discussing accounts with employees of the client and they have no clue what we’re talking about. They then try to convey this information with the person in charge, and it doesn’t get communicated correctly.

    Another issue with this is making sure the person speaking with the PPC manager has the ability to make decisions. Often, issues are discovered that are time sensitive. Waiting on a back and forth causes delays that hurt performance. 

    Anyone who your company intends to be involved in any aspect of your digital marketing campaign should be involved in the majority of conversations with your account manager. This will ensure they know the goals and expectations. A successful digital marketing campaign is made up of of many moving parts. Ensuring that all sides are on the same page will offer your company the most success.

    8. How Big is the Pay Per Click Advertising Company?

    I’ve mentioned the importance of the size of the agency several times. That’s because this factor is extremely important in choosing a PPC account manager to represent your company. In any search of pay per click Austin, several of the first names that pop up are huge companies. While not always bad, many are much more focused on their own growth than that of their clients.

    The size of a digital marketing agency is also relevant to the size of your businesses. If you have a small, local business, it may be in your best interest to find a small, local pay per click company. If your business is larger, you may need a dedicated marketing team to manage your account.

    Whatever your reasoning, always look at fees and budget requirements in comparison to the size of the PPC agency. Our company, Border West, has very reasonable management fees, while still producing best in class results. We do this by keeping our overhead low and our rent cheap. No putting greens, free beer taps, or rec rooms like many larger online marketing companies in Austin.

    9. Do You Want to Provide Input on the Ads and Targeting?

    This is another area that could be extremely important, or absolutely irrelevant depending on your company. How involved do you want to be with the pay per click campaign? And if you do want to be influential, will the PPC agency allow it?

    Having been on the campaign creation side, customer involvement can sometimes be counterproductive. When we started Border West, we truly wanted to differentiate ourselves. We wanted to avoid the negative aspects that are common with digital marketing agencies we’d worked for in Austin. As a PPC account manager, I appreciate the involvement of clients and I think it creates a better digital marketing campaign when they share ideas. 

    Whatever level of involvement you wish to have, be sure to ask if it’s possible up front. Many marketing companies will allow very little, if any, input from their clients. This becomes more true the larger the agency. If this is something that may be important to you, be sure to ask about it before you get involved with a PPC manager that that doesn’t allow it. 

    10. What Other Services Do They Offer Besides Pay Per Click?

    Digital marketing companies that offer multiple services can be extremely beneficial to your business by solving countless other issues that may occur. Often times, clients will approach a PPC agency with their idea of exactly what their company needs. Maybe they saw a Facebook ad that they liked, a pop up on an app, or a mass email from a reputation management company. Perhaps they just want to run Instagram ads because a friend found great success with it.

    Hiring a online advertiser with versatility can be extremely important for multiple reasons. A complete digital marketing company that knows how to advertise on Google, Bing, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Yelp (you get the picture) can show you which where your advertising budget will be best spent. They can also steer you away from areas that would be less effective.

    Also, hiring a digital marketer that can shift time and budget towards areas like SEO or website updates correctly can greatly increase customers, online exposure, and profits. You may not want to incorporate Social Media Management right away. Being able to include it at a later date with a company you already trust is a great benefit.

    Lastly, does the digital marketing company provide Google Local Services management for their clients? Google Local Services is an extremely powerful PPC advertising format created recently and expanding very rapidly. We are one of the few pay per click advertising companies that manage Google Local Services accounts as well, often incorporating them directly with our clients’ other Google Ad campaigns. If you’d like more information, reach out and we’ll check your eligibility.

    11. Will the PPC Agency Create Website Landing Pages if Necessary?

    This question goes along with other services offered by pay per click advertising agencies, but it’s importance alone is much higher. The ability of an agency to create or modify landing pages on your website is a huge factor in any pay per click campaign. At the very least, they should show an interest in who is in charge of your landing pages before offering a business proposal. If you have a web developer that can (and will) make necessary changes to pages on your website, that’s terrific. If not, hiring a digital marketing company that can work on your landing pages for you is crucial.

    The importance of landing pages is difficult to explain, although WikiPedia offers a thorough explanation. There are so many factors that quality landing pages influence;

    • Google Quality Score 
    • How high ads show up on searches
    • Cost of clicks
    • The amount of time people spend on a website after clicking
    • How many website visitors convert to customers
    • How many visitors return to the website

    Creating, and spending money, on PPC ads, only to send potential customers to an ineffective web page is wasteful. Alternatively, having amazing landing pages can get great results with a much smaller budget.

    12. How Soon Do You Want to See Results?

    Once again, the size of the pay per click company comes into play. This can be tricky because there’s no right answer that works across the board. A large digital marketing company could have the staff to get a content heavy online advertising campaign up and running in a week. But they might be too booked up to even start on your project for several weeks. 

    At Border West, how soon we can get started on a new campaign depends on current workload. Because we are an independent digital marketing company, we only answer to ourselves and our customers. There have been several occasions where we were able to shuffle other projects around and get a priority PPC campaign started in a couple of days.

    The most important aspect to consider is your personal expectations. If you feel that the start time is important, this needs to be discussed in the intro call. Even if it’s not something that you deem very relevant, it’s still necessary to find out the estimated time to start your campaign. You’ll find that a good line of communication is going to go a long way towards a successful marketing campaign.

    The post Finding the Right Pay Per Click Advertising Company for Your Business appeared first on Border West Digital Marketing.


    Best Advertising for Contractors-Built for Your Business | Border West

    How Border West Creates the Best Advertising for Contractors The hardest thing for most businesses is finding customers. We’ll explain in detail how we design contractor advertising that pulls leads. My main job at Border West is to figure out … Continued The post Best Advertising for Contractors-Built for Your Business | Border West appeared first on Border West Digital...

    How Border West Creates the Best Advertising for Contractors

    The hardest thing for most businesses is finding customers. We’ll explain in detail how we design contractor advertising that pulls leads.

    3D house contractor advertising

    My main job at Border West is to figure out how to get our clients more customers. I do this on a daily basis for all kinds of contractors like drywall installers, movers, and siding installers. Finding a formula that works for one client can rarely be duplicated for another. 

    When we try to find the best advertising for contractors, one of the biggest challenges is dividing the budget between the services they offer. Most contractors companies provide multiple types of services. One of our clients installs Hardie siding, replacement windows, decks, and roofing. Each of those services has dozens of specific keyword terms that customers might search for. If you just throw money at Google Ads without understanding the complexities, you’re going to waste a lot of money. 

    This is one of the reasons you need a digital marketing company that knows the industry.

    In order to demonstrate this, we put together these four rules we go by to create the best advertising for contractors.

    Got Questions ? 

    We can help!

    We know there’s like a gazillion websites out there that claim to have all the answers for making your website “show up first on Google”

    Maybe you just have a few questions to see what are the best options for your company

    Maybe you have absolutely no idea where to start

    Call Border West at (512) 516-9867, or click the button and we can discuss it through email

    We’ll answer any questions and see if maybe we can help. If we can’t, we’ll try to steer you in the right direction.

    No pressure, no contracts, no over-inflated promises. Just honest answers.

    Rule #1-Be Where Your Customers Are

    I’m going to go ahead and tell you the most important rule in marketing right away so you can stop reading.

    It’s making sure customers can find you when THEY’RE LOOKING! The best advertising for contractors are the ads that are seen at the right time.

    The biggest mistake companies make when trying to promote their business is just assuming that if people hear your name enough, they’ll remember you.

    This can be true, but it definitely work in the right situations. We’ve all heard catchy songs on commercials on television. And they may have even caused us to remember a product or service when we needed it. But those companies spent a ton of money on those advertising campaigns, probably a lot more than most contractors have in their marketing budget.

    So what about putting your business on a billboard? Or in an ad in a newspaper? 

    Those can certainly work, but for most small businesses, it’s just a gamble. Sure, someone could decide they want a new driveway and remember seeing your roofing company on a billboard on their way to work. 

    But are they going to call you because they saw a billboard? Would they even remember your company’s name?

    They’re most likely going to get on the computer or their phone and start to search the internet for roofers.

    Right Place, Right Time

    When someone decides they want to hire a contractor to do a job, they’re going to start searching right away. They might search Google Maps; they might get on Facebook, or maybe search their iPhone.

    If a contractor is going to spend money on advertising, the best return in today’s digital world, is going to be online. 

    People use their phones, computers, and tablets for nearly everything, and this trend isn’t going to change anytime soon. If you want to be successful promoting your company, you better get your business on the internet. Not only that, make sure customers can find you.

    This is done with pay per click ads. PPC ads are designed to show up right when someone is searching the internet for a related term. When someone has a pipe burst, they immediately search online for plumbers. If your plumbing company has a PPC campaign that’s set up right, their company is going to be one of the ones that show up.

    If it’s not, one of their competitors will. And they’ll get the job.

    Rule #2-See Things From Your Customer's Perspective

    One of the biggest problems when a contractor markets their business themselves is they do what they think looks good. Border West sees client websites with pictures of brand new F-150’s and hardly any writing all the time. Or dozens of blurry pictures from jobs from 2009, taken with a phone from 2004. 

    The problem is, potential customers don’t care about your new truck or pictures of every job you did ten years ago. They care about getting a new bathroom installed. And they want to know that you’re the best contractor for the job, at a price that fits their budget.  

    This is why it make sense to hire a company like Border West that specializes in getting leads for contractors. We know from experience how to get your website in front of customers online. And we know how to make your company look good so that they want to hire you. 

    It’s what we do and we do it well. Get in touch and we’ll explain how.

    Rule # 3-Don't Waste Money!

    Whenever we take on a new client, we ask them to limit or eliminate all other advertising spending. The point of this is for us to show them the exact results that Border West’s online marketing brings them. Afterwards, they’ll have a better idea what brings the most contractor leads, dollar for dollar.

    An issue we’ve had repeatedly is clients insisting on spending money promoting their business where it doesn’t perform well. Some owners feel that they need to be on Facebook, or a certain magazine, or a radio station no matter what. They spend ridiculous amounts of money on these ads, even though the same amount would preform 2 or more times better in other areas.

    It’s not a bad idea to diversify your ad budget, if you have a very large company and it makes sense.

    If your company isn’t traded on the stock market (yet) and you’re just looking for more contractor leads, spend your money where it makes the most sense. And makes you the most money.

    You wouldn’t keep buying Ford Trucks if Chevy’s lasted four times longer and cost the same price (just a hypothetical, we’re not taking a side on that debate). Don’t waste money in areas that aren’t helping your business as much as they should.

    This goes for web design, SEO, and digital marketing companies as well. If they’re not getting the results you want, fire them and call us. We want to earn your business and we’ll work our butts off for it!

    How to Tell What's Working

    A lot of digital marketing companies will show off numbers every month, boasting about all the traffic they’ve gotten you. The problem is, their charts and reports don’t always result in more customers.

    Border West provides monthly reports also, but we also ask our clients to be involved in telling us what’s working. We work on our partners’ accounts every day, and if something isn’t performing, we fix it immediately.

    With internet marketing, it’s easy to get tons of traffic if you don’t care what happens when it gets there. The best advertising for contractors is what gets them jobs, not just clicks on their website.

    Rule # 4- Take Advantage of Free Advertising!

    Wait, what?

    Free contractor advertising? 

    Like holding a sign alongside the road?

    Well, dancing around on a corner with a big sign is technically free advertising if you do it yourself, that’s not really what we meant. This means making your business shine on social media, Google Business, and with SEO. These are extremely effective places to get found by customers that you really should be taking advantage of.

    We’ve covered Google Business and Facebook ads for contractors other places on this website. There are definitely ways to really stand out in social media and Google Maps, but the most important thing is to get listed. That also means to make sure all of your business listings are exactly the same! Not similar or close, but exact. If you use Rd. instead of Road for your address, do it the same way every time. If you don’t, you’ll piss off Google, and you don’t want to do that.

    Since we’ve covered social media and Google Business, let’s talk about what’s really going to have the biggest long term benefit to your business.

     

    Contractor SEO-Get Your Site Right!

    SEO, if you don’t know what it is, means search engine optimization. It’s comprised of many different ingredients that make your website look good for search engines like Google. 

    Search engines don’t have senses, so they can’t tell how good a website is by looking at it and reading the content. Everything about your site is written in code, including the actual words you write. If that code and the words inside it is done correctly, your website is considered optimized for search engines.

    While it sounds extremely difficult, once you’ve learned how to do it, it’s not that bad. The worst part is that it’s extremely time consuming. A contractor doing SEO for their own website is going to have to dedicate time to learning it, then several hours per week implementing what they learned. 

    Most businesses hire a professional SEO company like Border West to make their website like a fly trap for customers.

    Since you brought it up, here’s what it entails when Border West does SEO for a contractor.

    Content Creation (Writing Stuff)

    We were explaining SEO to a client who had a photography business recently. We analyzed his website, and all we saw were pictures. He had a very hard time understanding why a photographer needed to write about taking pictures instead of just showing examples.

    We explained how Google can’t see his pictures, and only knows what it reads in his site’s code. He seemed to get it, but he didn’t really like it. 

    With a contractor website, you’re going to have to write a bunch of articles about your work as well, if you want your site to show up on Google. And the better you write them, with just the right amount of the perfect keywords, the higher it goes on the list.

    Doing this takes time, experience, and the unique ability to write a new blog about James Hardie siding every other week. If you own a roofing business, you need to write about roofing. A lot. Your roofing articles need to be detailed and long too. The best performing blog pages on Google are usually 1,500 words or more. 

    Don’t want to write essays about installing tile twice month for the next year? 

    Give Border West a call!

    Getting Backlinks

    Alright, this is where contractor SEO gets a little more complicated. I know what you’re thinking;

    What the hell is a backlink?

    A backlink is a link to your website that is on another website, simple as that.

    There are different types and they are different levels of value to your site, but the point is, you need them. A whole lot, if you can get them. 

    The basic reason that backlinks are important to search engines like Google, is because they use it to gauge your website’s authority. Search engines use the assumption that if a site is linked by a bunch of other websites, it must have a lot of information that people want. 

    Ideally, if you just write great content for your website, people will use it and share it with others. Other websites will reference it in their own pages. This will improve your site’s authority and cause it to rank higher on Google. The only problem is, this could take years to accomplish. And this is only true if your content is good enough to be shared. If you write garbage, it doesn’t matter how much of it there is.

    It is possible to speed up the process a bit with some not so secret tricks. They all take more time than actually writing content, but are easily found by searching “how to build backlinks.”

    Technical SEO for a Contractor Site

    Now we’re really getting technical (pun intended). 

    Technical SEO is just a catch-all term for the behind the scenes stuff that makes your site work better. 

    One of the main ranking factors is loading speed. If two sites are exactly the same and one loads pages a half second faster, guess what? The faster site is going to rank higher.

    There are other factors involved that help search engines find your site easier. It may not always seem like it, but Google’s main job is to provide the absolute best options whenever someone asks for something in a search. Much of how it determines that is a secret of their algorithms. The stuff that isn’t is what’s categorized as SEO.

    Rule # 5- Spy on Your Competition

    In the last several years of doing digital marketing for contractors, we’ve found some really cool tricks. Some of the best ones involve using the magic of the internet to literally spy on competitors. 

    When we take on a new client, the first thing we do is find out how competitive the market for their service is in their area.

    Want us to do internet marketing for a concrete contractor? First thing we’re going to do is see exactly how many other concrete companies there are in the area. Soon as we do that, we’re going to see how all their websites are looking with SEO.

    The most important thing we’ll do is look at the pay per click campaigns. We’ll see what the average cost per click for keywords our client is going to need for their business. Then we’ll look at all the keywords that are being used by the top concrete contractors in the area. We’ll also see how much they’re spending to be at the top of Google. That way we know what it’ll cost to beat them.

    Once we start working for your company, your competition will wish they hired us to manage their digital marketing.

    The best advertising for contractors is cherry picked from their competitors marketing strategies then used to beat them on Google!

    Types of Contracting Companies We Work With

    This is just a sample list of some of the types of contractor advertising Border West does. If it’s on the list, we’re still going to want to talk about strategy first. If it’s not, check with us because it probably should be.

    Anyone on in any of these industries knows what their company is capable of. They know that not every job isn’t going to be a good fit, and if it’s not, better to walk away then do a crappy job. 

    Advertising for contractors is no different at Border West. We’ll talk about your specific project. If we don’t think we can get results both parties are happy with, we’ll do our best to steer you in the right direction. 

    Additions & Remodeling

    Air Conditioning

    Appliances

    Appraiser

    Architects & Engineers

    Asphalt 

    Audio/Visual 

    Awnings

    Brick & Stone

    Cabinets

    Carpenters

    Carpet Cleaning

    Central Vacuum

    Cleaning & Maid Services

    Concrete

    Countertops

    Decks

    Demolition Service

    Designers & Decorators

    Developer

    Disaster Recovery Services

    Doors

    Drywall

    Electrical 

    Excavation

    Fences

    Fireplace & Wood Stoves

    Flooring & Carpet

    Foundations

    Fountains & Ponds

    Furniture Repair 

    Garage Doors

    Gutters

    Handyman Services

    Heating & Furnace Systems

    Home Builders

    Home Inspection

    Home Security 

    Hot Tubs, Spas & Saunas

    Housekeeping

    Insulation

    Landscaping

    Lawn & Garden Care

    Lifting & Moving Heavy Items

    Locksmith

    Metal Fabrication

    Mold & Asbestos Services

    Moving Companies

    Owner/Operators

    Painting

    Paving

    Pest Control

    Plumbing

    Powdercoating

    Power Washing

    Roofing

    Sandblasting

    Septic Tanks & Wells

    Sheds & Enclosures

    Siding

    Sign Making 

    Skylights

    Snow Removal 

    Solar

    Stained Glass

    Swimming Pools

    Tile

    Tree Service

    Waste Material Removal

    Water Damage Restoration

    Water Treatment System

    Waterproofing

    Window Coverings

    Windows

    The post Best Advertising for Contractors-Built for Your Business | Border West appeared first on Border West Digital Marketing.


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