Nobody has ever wanted to happily sit on a sales roller coaster, feeling stressed and anxious about where the next sale is coming from.
As I talked about with my own experiences recently, the feast / famine cycle has a major effect on your mental health.
Choosing to be a digital agency owner, solo web designer or marketer was one of the bravest decisions that you’ve made in your life thus far. You chose to do something different and make your mark on the world.
The difficulty you face is just how hard it can be to have a steady stream of leads coming in, particularly when you’re always busy with client work. How can you even find time to work on your own business?
This article runs through four methods of breaking free from the feast / famine cycle. Each of these can be actioned quickly and you can start taking back control of your business.
Free yourself and win back the gift of time!
How do I break out of the cycle?
Just like Baldric in the wonderful Blackadder series, you’re going to need a cunning plan.
Thankfully, your plan will be a little more successful than Baldric’s plans were.
The simple answer to the question above is that you need a plan in place to bring new leads to your business on autopilot. The autopilot part is important here. We’ve already established that you are often busy working on client projects, so you want something that works for you and doesn’t need your constant attention.
Using automation will allow you to free up your time. This time can then be spent on important facets of your business such as managing client projects, internal admin work or even professional development. Outside of work, you can use the additional time that you save to spend more time with your partner, children, family, dog, cat or even your pet raccoon. As a side note, if you have a pet raccoon, please don’t let Mel know, as she’ll demand a visit.
There are four plans that we’re going to go through today:
- Marketing Funnels
- Your Portfolio
- Recurring Revenue
I’ve detailed each of them below for you, with some action steps to help you get started. Wherever possible, I’m going to show you how easy it is to automate these processes and give yourself back the gift of time. This is the whole principle on which we’re running our business on here.
The most important thing you can do for your business is to start taking action and re-addressing the balance of new leads and client work. By making these changes, you can break free from the ‘feast / famine cycle’ and be free from the stress and fear that comes with it.
Depending on your level of experience, marketing funnels will either be a piece of cake to you or they’ll seem like magical unicorns.
As you’ve found your way onto our website, you most likely have a decent idea of what a marketing funnel is and why it’s valuable to both your business and also to your clients. If not – no problem, here’s a quick explanation of a marketing funnel for you…
A marketing funnel details the customer journey from first discovering your business, right along to purchasing your products or services. It’s a marketing method that you control and allows you to visualise every step of the customer journey. Your marketing funnel is automatically validating the incoming leads. Only the most interested prospects are going to flow through each step, giving you the best quality leads to follow up with.
As we’ve established, the best way for you to escape the feast / famine cycle is to generate more leads for your business. So the goal for your marketing funnel will be to encourage your visitors to subscribe and become a potential lead.
What sort of marketing funnel do you need for your business? This will vary a little with the services that you offer, but let’s imagine that you want to offer a Website Audit service for potential website re-designs, new website designs and other services that you can upsell.
Website Audit Funnel
The main goal of this funnel will either be for you to schedule an appointment with the potential client or if you want to be completely automated, to sell your Website Audit service.
I’m going to run through the whole funnel here. You can take this away and put it together yourself, ready to start generating new leads. Alternatively, if you’re interested this is something that we sell as a Funnel Pack – which is a pre-built marketing funnel that you can implement for your business in under an hour.
Firstly. you’re going to need to think about the biggest problems that your clients suffer from with their existing websites. What elements of a website could be improved and would give them a greater opportunity for success? Make a list of 5-10 key points that would resonate with your target audience.
Now we’re going to take 5 of those key points from your list and put these into a lead magnet. This is what the potential client is going to be signing up to receive. They’ll give you their name and email address and in exchange, you’ll give them your valuable document with the 5 key points that will improve their website.
Your lead magnet should have:
- Front Cover – A nice graphic or stock image will suit here, with a clear title. Don’t forget to put your company logo and contact details on the cover.
- Introduction Page – This allows you to introduce your business and show your expertise on the subject matter. Remember this is not War & Peace, write directly to your target audience here, show them that you understand their business.
- One Page for each key point – Self-explanatory, but try and keep each item to one page if you can. This gives plenty of content, but not too much that it becomes hard for people to read through the document in full.
- Summary Page – A quick summary of what people have learned in your PDF guide and further details on how to contact you if they have any questions.
Your lead magnet can be created using any software that allows you to save a PDF file as the end result. If you’re graphically inclined, a great option for this would be Adobe’s InDesign software. However, you can use Google Docs or even Google Slides as free options. This will be a matter of personal and technical preference.
You’ll want a landing page on your website where your visitors can sign-up to receive your new lead magnet.
Your landing page should have a targeted message that is aimed directly at your potential clients. You want to speak in their language and to make sure you include the specific pain points that you made a list of earlier.
The landing page should talk about your solution and how it provides benefits to help solve the pain points that you’ve identified. Note that I’ve bolded the word benefits – it’s important as we must think in terms of benefits and not features.
Here are some items that you should include on your landing page:
- Main Headline – Your main headline is the hook that will draw people further into the page. It should clearly explain what your landing page is about and what you’re offering to your visitor.
- Hero shot (image / video) – A hero shot is used to display the product or service. As we’re talking about website audits, your hero shot here could be a nice graphic showing a website audit report or a copy of your PDF document as a nice soft cover book. You could also consider creating a short 1-2 minute video, talking about your lead magnet and what the visitor will receive.
- Sub Headline – The sub-headline continues the flow from your main headline and it again confirms that the user is in the right place. You’ll typically use the sub-headline to explain about your offer in more detail. Depending on the length of your landing page and the type of content that you’re writing, you may not need to include this.
- Value Reinforcement – In the main content area of your landing page, you should include 1-2 paragraphs of content that reinforces to the visitor, the value that they’ll receive by taking action. This is a great place to mention the pain points that your visitor’s website is suffering from and how your solution helps them to solve these. You should be referring back to your main headline, reminding them why they’re on your landing page and what they will achieve today by taking action.
- Benefits NOT features – The user needs to understand the benefits of your service. We’re going to tell them about the benefits that will solve the specific pain points that the user has. If you traditionally talk about ‘features’ make sure you re-frame these into benefits. For example instead of saying “Cart Abandonment” you might say “Remind customers who don’t complete their purchase to return to your website and finish their order”.
- Social Proof – When we talk about social proof, we’re talking about adding trust factors to your page. People who trust you are going to be more inclined to purchase from you. Some examples of social proof that you can use on your landing page include: Testimonials, Reviews, Social Media Posts, Certifications / Accreditations and Awards.
- Call to Action (CTA) – This is ultimately the whole point of your landing page and the action that you want the user to take. In this Website Audit example, you want the user to sign up to receive your lead magnet. You need to tell the user what they should do and what they’re going to get for doing so.
- Closing Statement – Just before you wrap things up, you should have a closing statement on the page that summarises the visitor’s problem, how you’re going to give them the solution to this problem and an encouragement for them to take action.
Thank You Page
Your Thank You Page is the first page that your new subscriber is going to see after they’ve signed up to receive your lead magnet.
It’s important to note that we’re not providing a link to the download on this page. The reason for this is that we want to make sure that only genuine subscribers are signing up to receive your content. If you offer the lead magnet to download on the Thank You Page, then you’re doing to receive junk leads over time that are of no value to you. The download of the Lead Magnet itself, will be in the Welcome email – which we’ll talk about shortly.
The first thing that you want to do on your Thank You Page is to thank the visitor for sharing their information with you. A nice big headline that says thank you is a good starting point. Depending on the type of person that you are, you may also want to add a video message to your thank you page. No need to create anything longer than a minute or so, but it will help to establish trust with the person who hast just asked to receive your valuable content.
Next, we want to confirm again what the visitor has signed up for and how they’re doing to receive it. We’re automating the delivery of our first email, which will contain a link to the content that they have requested – so we can let them know to look out for an email in the next 5 minutes. You may also wish to recommend that they whitelist your email address – to make sure they receive future emails from you.
Finally, you can use the rest of your Thank You Page for any additional content items. Some examples of items that you could consider adding would include:
- Recent Blog Posts – You could show the most recent blog posts or blog posts which are on a similar topic to the landing page and lead magnet.
- Additional Content – Perhaps you have some additional content that would be worth the visitor reading or watching? You can present that here.
- Social Proof – Add further testimonials, links to case studies and elements that establish more trust with your new lead.
- Tripwire / Upsell Product – Whilst not strictly necessary for our Website Audit marketing funnel, this is a great place to offer something for sale immediately at a low cost. You’re giving the user a low barrier to entry option of spending money with your business. Once a customer has spent money with you, it’s far easier to get them to spent money again in the future.
As I don’t want to assume that you already have an email list for your business, I’m going to state here that it’s absolutely critical for automation that you have one in place. This doesn’t have to be an expensive add-on for your business. Start-up costs will vary between FREE – $49/month, so you can choose the option that makes the most sense for you.
Here are some recommended email platforms to consider and the lowest monthly price for each (note – I’ve looked at the monthly rate on an on-going basis and not the possible discounts when paying yearly):
- MailerLite – Free for up to 1,000 subscribers. $10/month to remove branding and access additional features.
- ActiveCampaign – $15/month for up to 500 subscribers
- ConvertKit – $29/month for up to 1,000 subscribers
- Drip – $49/month for up to 2,500 subscribers.
Each of the above platforms offer a great automation platform, so your choice will come down to your preference, any prior experience and ultimately the value for money that they give you.
Try a few of them out, find the one that you feel works best for you and let’s move onto the next step.
Right, so you’ve now signed up for an account with your chosen email provider, it’s time to get some emails in place. The first of these is your welcome email.
Your welcome email is a chance for you to thank your new subscriber for signing up to receive your content, to deliver that content and also to tell them a little more about you and your business. As we’re offering a PDF lead magnet, you’ll want to add a link into your email so that the recipient can easily download the document. You may also want to ask them again to whitelist your email address, so that they can receive future emails.
One thing we like to do in the welcome email is to let them know that we’ll be sending a couple of additional emails over the next few days, to prepare them for the nurturing sequence that they’ll receive next.
Your email marketing platform will typically allow you to tag a new subscriber or assign them to a group when they sign up. The assigned tag or group will then run the automation that you set up.
Make sure you test your welcome email before you make you make your landing page live. You’ll test it now and also as part of the whole process, which includes the nurture emails, as detailed below.
It’s important to nurture your new subscribers and to deliver value to them. Using a series of nurturing emails will help you to educate your prospective client, deliver value to them and to build trust.
Through sharing valuable content you can help your leads to understand how you can help them further with their problems through your expertise.
A general rule of thumb would be that you should create one nurture email for each of the points in your lead magnet. So if you lead magnet was based on something along the lines of “5 Tips For A More Successful Website”, then you would want to have 5 nurture emails.
Every nurture email that you write should build on the point that you made in your lead magnet and also add in either a tip, action point or discussion point, to encourage interaction from the recipient.
Here’s a typical email workflow that you might use, which includes the welcome email and nurture emails. I’ve assumed that you would have 5 nurture emails from your lead magnet:
- Day 1 – Initial welcome email that delivers the content the user has requested
- Day 2 – Nurture Email 1
- Day 3 – Nurture Email 2
- Day 4 – Nurture Email 3
- Day 5 – Nurture Email 4
- Day 6 – Nurture Email 5
- Day 7 – Sales Email / Consultation Email (you have a choice either to sell a service directly via automation or to direct the user towards booking a consultation with you)
- Day 8-14 – Repeat the Offer a couple more times, to ensure your lead has a chance to read and review your message.
The above series of emails would be sent out over a week. You may not want to send emails out over the weekend, as people are typically busy with their families and loved ones – this will depend on your target audience. If you do want to block emails being sent at weekends, you can set up parameters in your email platform such as ‘day of the week’, for emails to be sent/not-sent.
As suggested above, when you’re sending out nurture emails full of value, you want to encourage the recipient to ask questions and to take action. Use a conversational tone and talk directly to the recipient. If you’ve read through our website, you’ll note that we use a friendly and engaging tone and we’re not afraid to use our sense of humour.
It’s worth noting that not every single lead is going to engage with your content. The world is full of people who hold different beliefs, have different ideas and different needs. It’s perfectly okay for them not to resonate with you or your business. In fact, you should welcome this.
People that unsubscribe or don’t read your content are doing you one of the biggest favours that you could possibly ask for. By not engaging with your content, they’re showing you that they’re not a great fit for your business.
You’re looking for leads that resonate with your content, who understand your expertise and are ready for you to assist them with their needs. So…please, understand that anyone who unsubscribes or doesn’t flow all the way through your marketing funnel is a positive thing, since it allows you to focus on people who truly need your help.
Sales Email / Consultation Email
The final email that we are sending to our lead in our marketing funnel is a sales or consultation email. We can also refer to this as as a call to action email.
The call to action email takes you from delivering great value and expertise to your lead, to providing them with an opportunity to say yes and purchase a product or service from you.
When the lead has followed through your marketing funnel, engaged with your content and found value in the things you’ve shared, they’re now ideally positioned to buy from you. You’ve developed trust with your lead and you’ve shown them that you’re the expert who is able to assist with their pain points.
Your call to action email doesn’t have to be for sale. It can also be for a free trial of your software, a product demonstration or even the opportunity to book a call with you. Whatever you intend to offer, your aim is to direct the user into taking action.
As we’re creating a Website Audit marketing funnel, there are two possible endpoints:
- Sales Email – A sales email that leads to a sales page where you can directly sell your website audit. This may be for a website audit package, along with some additional assistance to make changes to your client’s website.
- Consultation Email – As an alternate option, you can send a consultation email to your lead, giving them an opportunity to book a call with you via a service such as Calendly, Acuity Scheduling or Book Like A Boss.
We have actually used both of these in our Website Audit marketing funnel previously. Firstly, the Sales email was offered after the nurture emails, as per the example above. If a user didn’t take up the sales offer, they were presented a further option to book a consultation, a few days later.
As a note, in order to answer any questions, the offer that we have previously sold to our clients was for £399 / $499. The sales offer was a full website audit plus 2 hours of development time to action some of the points from the audit.
Summary of the Website Audit Marketing Funnel
Through the above steps, you’ve put together a whole marketing funnel. Go you!
The most important thing to remember is that taking action and getting your marketing funnel in place is the first step. You can always make further tweaks once it’s up and running but don’t let inaction stop you from having an opportunity to gain further leads.
The end result of this marketing funnel is that you can generate new leads and sales on autopilot, whilst also delivering great value and expertise to your prospective clients.
Some final tips with regards to your new marketing funnel:
- Focus on one service or offer for your first funnel. In our example we’ve focused on selling a Website Audit.
- Make sure that you target the pain points that your customers and their websites are suffering from.
- In your lead magnet and nurture emails give your leads some quick wins and overdeliver with value.
- Have a suitable CTA with any marketing funnel that you create – this should either be a sale or an opportunity to book a call with you.
- Follow up! Always follow up with people, make sure that you’re easy to reach if your leads have any questions.
- Don’t forget about re-targeting adverts. If someone doesn’t take you up on your offer immediately, you can target them with advertising on platforms such as Google Adwords or Facebook.
If you’d like a jump start with creating your Website Audit marketing funnel, we’ve created a Website Audit Funnel Pack that might be ideal for you. For the launch price of $97, we’ve included all of the elements that have been discussed above, along with some additional bonus content. The Funnel Pack has been designed so that you can set up and implement everything on to your website within one hour. Plus it’s all editable, so you can tweak to suit your tone and audience.
Referrals are a great source of new leads for your business. Never underestimate how strong referrals can be as a user who has been referred, comes to your business based on the advice or recommendation of a trusted friend.
A referral will usually contact you directly following a recommendation or they’ll be introduced to you in a ‘group’ email, so that you can continue the conversation from there.
Before I continue, to clarify what I mean by ‘group email’, I mean where your existing client or contact has emailed both you and the person they are referring your services to.
It’s important to act quickly when you get a referral, as they’ve been pre-sold about your services and had a solid recommendation from someone they trust.
How To Get More Referrals
Ready for the simplest answer of them all? Ask for them.
The easiest way to get more referrals is to ask your customers for them. Some people suggest doing this immediately at the end of a project, but it’s worth noting that the best referrals come when a client is happy with the services you’ve provided.
If you’ve created a new website that has gone live and they’re delighted with your work – great, you can ask now!
However, if you’re working with your client on a longer-term strategy – wait until you’ve delivered great value and your client is happy. This is the perfect time for them to refer their contacts to you.
The whole referral process comes back to nurturing your relationship with your client. If you’re engaged with them, sharing useful content and encouraging their growth, you’re going to get better referrals.
It’s not desperate to ask for referrals. When you’re nurturing your clients, sharing their content and enjoying a good relationship with them – you’ll find that your happy clients will happily refer people to you.
How To Handle Referrals
Referrals should be treated like a VIP when you first talk to them. Remember, this is someone who has been pre-sold on your services and the quality that you offer.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that every person who is referred is going to be a great fit, but until this has been confirmed, you’ll want to respond quickly and treat them well… just like you would with any new lead right?
It’s a great idea to establish early rapport with your new lead. A warm immediate response to their initial point of contact (usually via email or phone call), will work wonders for establishing a great relationship moving forwards.
Once you have an understanding of your new lead’s requirements, usually via a Discovery Call, you can now put together a proposal for your referred lead.
If you take nothing else away from this entire blog post, make sure you send that proposal within 24 hours of your call. It will make a huge difference to the acceptance rates of your proposals and you’re showing your new lead how much you value them, right from the start.
Should You Give Away A Percentage?
This is a common question that people ask when thinking about referrals. It’s important to thank the person who referred a lead to you, but should you be giving away a percentage of the sale?
Firstly, whilst you don’t want to give anything away unless a sale has been made, you always want to thank the person who referred a lead to you. Even if the lead wasn’t a good fit for your business, they still took the time to think of you and pass your name and information to their friend or colleague.
When it comes to the sale itself, there are three options that you can consider. You don’t always have to think about giving away a percentage. Here’s three that we recommend:
- Give away a percentage – This is a common option and it is typically preferred when it’s another service provider or partner who has sent the referral to you. Somewhere around 10% of the value of the sale is quite a common figure. This is a smart way of encouraging someone to regularly refer leads to you.
- Send a thank you gift – Thank you gifts are sometimes quite underrated in business. This could be anything from a box of cupcakes, tickets for a game or show that you know the person would like, a case of wine or something really unique and special. Taking time to get to know your customers and partners can make a big difference here.
- Free or discounted service – If the person referring is an existing customer of your business, you could offer them a discount or a free service from your business as a way of saying thank you. This encourages your customers to send you more referrals, as they can reduce their on-going expenditure.
Referrals Are Powerful
As you can see, the power of referrals is almost unrivalled when compared to any other marketing tactic for your business.
When a lead is referred to your business, they’re energised by what they’ve been told about you. They’re not a cold lead that has stumbled onto your website via the search engines or social media. Instead, a real human being has said you’re awesome!
Take advantage of referrals in your business. If you’re not yet asking for them, make sure that you’re building great relationships with your clients. As soon as you’ve delivered happiness and value to your clients, strike whilst the iron is hot and ask them if they have any friends or colleagues that would find your services useful.
Your portfolio can be a great source of leads for your business. Anyone that visits your website can look at recent work that you’ve provided for your clients and start making judgements to see if you’d be a good fit to work with their business.
Your portfolio page should feature your best work. It’s not the place to list every single project that you’ve ever worked on, although you’re always welcome to buck the trend. The world needs more people that break the rules!
A good rule of thumb is to focus on the best pieces of work that you’ve created over the last couple of years. Somewhere around 6-12 projects would be a solid number.
If you’re newer to the industry or have finished less projects at this point – that’s completely okay. Just use all of the projects you’ve completed so far, and when you have enough, start cutting this down to your best pieces of work.
Take Time To Create Case Studies
If you’re serious about generating new business, it’s not enough to just add an image or two of the website or design that you’ve created.
You need to create Case Studies.
Don’t be afraid of the term ‘Case Studies’. It doesn’t mean you need to write 10,000 words and give up your first born child. You’re just going to talk about the goals of the project and how you helped your client to achieve them.
Here’s our top 4 things that you should include in your Case Studies:
- Screenshots of your work
- Your client’s goals
- The work you carried out
- Your client’s testimonial
From a technical perspective, you can set something like this up using Custom Post Types and create two templates. One for your individual Case Study pages and one to display all of your Case Studies as an overview.
As agency owners, the one thing we never have enough of is time, so you want to streamline your Case Study approach as much as possible! Once you have a Custom Post Type and Template in place, you can just “fill in the blanks” and boom… new Case Study!
Don’t Get Boxed In
A common complaint from agency owners who have portfolios is that they can easily be pigeonholed by prospective clients who look at their portfolio.
Of course, if you work with one specific niche then you don’t need to worry too much about this. If you only work with Leatherworkers and you want to provide the #1 Leatherworker Web Design service in the world… rock it out!
For everyone else who works with a more general niche or is too afraid to niche down to something specific yet… take a moment to look at how your Portfolio is positioning your business. Make sure you have a diverse range of projects that showcase your ability to achieve your client’s goals and your design / technical expertise.
Recurring revenue is often referred to as the lifeblood of your business. In fact, it’s important to so many businesses around the world.
Look at what you’re paying for on a monthly basis. Services like Spotify, Netflix, G Suite (Gmail), Web Hosting and many more. All of these companies depend on that monthly revenue for growth.
A great example of a company that pivoted in recent years would be Microsoft with their Office product. Previously, you could go to your local retail store and purchase a copy of Microsoft Office on a CD or DVD for a fixed price.
Microsoft wanted a bigger piece of the pie, which would deliver them recurring revenue and also help to quash one of the most pirated pieces of software on the Internet. So a few years ago they introduced Office 365. Now you can pay a monthly (or yearly) price in order to gain access to the software.
Benefits Of Recurring Revenue
Growing your agency’s recurring revenue has many positive benefits. Not only will you help to establish further growth, you can also free yourself from the worry and stress of the feast / famine cycle.
Creating and setting up a recurring revenue income stream will work on a cumulative basis. If you add 5 new customers at $49/month you will start off earning $245 in month 1. By month 12 with 60 customers on your recurring revenue stream, you’re now generating $2,940 per month.
The more people you add into the system, the more you get out of it, month after month. It has a snowball effect and a very addictive process of seeing new payments coming in over and over.
At the simplest level, your goal should be to cover the fixed outgoings for your agency. So if your fixed costs are $2,000 per month – set your first goal for your MRR (Monthly Recurring Revenue) to be $2,000 of income.
How Can You Generate Recurring Revenue?
The beauty of being an agency owner is that you have a diverse range of potential services that you can offer on a monthly basis.
One of the most common of these is Care Plans, but there are other options too. Here’s a few examples for you:
- Website Care Plans – A monthly service where you help your clients to maintain and update their website. You’ll usually have a range of plans that vary in the levels of service that you provide.
- SEO / Marketing
- Paid Ads (PPC)
- Social Media
One of my favourite monthly services that I’ve seen in the past few years have been people who are creating WaaS (Website as a Service) models. These are either people taking a specific niche or a specific product and selling this in a scalable way to their audience.
One example of this would be what John White is doing at mtnsites. He has set up a Web Design productised service where he’s selling websites to his customers, but they’re paying monthly for this. He had a great interview with Kyle Van Deusen and Matt Sebert on The Admin Bar. I’ve popped the video below and highly recommend giving it a watch:
Set Up WordPress Care Plans For Your Agency’s Clients
Let’s get started with setting up one of the most popular services that you can offer to your clients – WordPress Care Plans.
Firstly, you need to decide exactly what you’re going to offer to your clients. Our friends over at WP Elevation have written a great guide on WordPress Care Plans, so rather than repeating the same thing again – please check out that post!
After you’ve decided on the services that you want to offer, you should now divide these up over different price points. You’ll have your “Base” level which is the minimum service that you offer. Then you can have a middle and top tier.
You can use a little bit of psychology with your pricing with a technique known as Price Anchoring. If you’ve never heard of this before I’ll explain it below. Once you understand it, you’ll see it everywhere you look!
In a nutshell, Price Anchoring is when you have a high (or low) priced option that makes the next option look insanely valuable by comparison. When we look at Care Plans we would usually want to use our highest tier option as our price anchor.
For most people, the goal would be to get people to purchase the middle tier out of three pricing options. You can also load the middle option with enough extra features that it becomes a “no brainer” purchase over your minimum option. This should lead to a majority purchasing the middle option, a few purchasing the lowest and some bonus purchases of your top package.
Now you have your plans in place and an idea of pricing. But how you do DELIVER the work?
You have a choice between carrying out the Care Plan work yourself or you can outsource the work to an established WordPress Support company. I’ll cover both options below, starting with the outsourced options.
If you want to outsource the work and just take a percentage of your client’s monthly payment then you can use a provider such as GoWP or MaintainPress. These are both well established WordPress Support companies who target their services towards supporting design agencies like yours.
For those of you who want to handle the work yourselves, you’ll need a few tools and systems set up. Here’s my recommendations for you:
- Support Dashboard – This is an important piece of the jigsaw as it helps you to manage all of your client websites from one location. We use MainWP for managing our clients. Another popular system is ManageWP.
- Support Ticket Platform – For support tickets there are a plethora of options available. We use HelpScout for Funnel Packs and also for our care plan clients. If you use our link you’ll get a $50 credit when you sign up.
- Billing System – We recommend ThriveCart as one of the best agency billing tools around. It can handle any of your monthly subscription payment options really well, including assisting you with automated emails if your client’s credit/debit cards have expired. We highly recommend ThriveCart and use it across our website.
- Payment Provider – The most common options here would be PayPal or Stripe. If you have a preferred payment provider in your own country, you can look at using those too. GoCardless are a good option for a number of countries including the UK, EU, USA, Canada and Australia. They offer a direct debit / direct deposit option for your clients.
- A Team – Now you don’t need to have this straight away, but you should be prepared to consider adding in some team members (even on a part-time basis) to assist you as you grow your MRR. Your time isn’t always best spent in the trenches.
Now that you’ve got all your tools and systems set up, the last thing you need to do is create a page offering your WordPress Care Plan services on your website and tell all of your clients about your new service.
For your existing clients, you can send them an email with a link to purchase a new Care Plan. For new clients, start talking about Care Plans from the beginning of your journey with them. From the proposal, right up to the end.
A clever tactic that can help you to sell more Care Plans is to include 30 days of free website support when you launch a new website. You can show your client how great your Care Plans are and at the end of the 30 days, all they need to do is visit your checkout and make a purchase!
Fancy A Quick Start For New Care Plan Leads?
It would be remiss of me not to tell you that we offer a WordPress Care Plan Funnel Pack.
This is a pre-built marketing funnel that is designed to help you set up a lead generation method for your new WordPress Care Plans. It’s ideal for new customers who aren’t yet sure if they need a Care Plan or for your existing customers to help push them over the line.
One of our Funnel Packs customers recently had great success with selling Care Plans to two of his customers, just by sending the PDF Lead Magnet to them via email. So two emails helped him to generate an additional $200/month on an ongoing basis.
As with any of the Funnel Packs that we offer, you can set it up on your website in under an hour.
You’re Ready To Break Free
The feast / famine cycle is a bitterly tough place, so if you’re currently there right now, know that I feel your pain. Many of us reading this feel your pain.
You can get through this and you’re ready to break free right now.
I’ve run through four options in this post. These are by no means the only options available, there are many things that you can do. However, these are four strong ways of setting up better processes for your digital agency and generating more revenue.
The act of getting your MRR to be equal to or higher than your monthly fixed costs is something that is going to have such a big change on you. I want you to promise me that you’ll come back and send me a quick message when you’ve done this, as I love feeling and sharing in the joy that people have at this stage!
Above all, remember that no matter how difficult things seem – the next great client is only a phone call or an email away. Setting up better processes, bringing in new leads, delivering a great service and continuing the sales conversation is going to lead to you on a path of agency growth.
Take time today to give your agency, your family, your staff and yourself a better future by setting off on the right foot.