There are three things that drive Michael Overzat crazy about companies’ digital marketing strategies:
1) They don’t have one.
2) They outsource it entirely with the mentality, “I got that covered.”
3) They abandon traditional sales methods.
Seriously, it drives Overzat mad. He runs into companies all the time that literally have no digital presence, and then these business owners wonder why they are paying outrageous amounts for third party lead sites like HomeAdvisor or Zillow that send them unqualified leads in the first place.
“It’s almost comical,” Overzat says. “You have these contractors or realtors who pay $50 dollars for a lead because they have a website that doesn’t rank. Then when they do get the lead—if it doesn’t turn into a sale right away—they never follow up with the lead more than once or twice and go and pay another $50 for a new lead...” Overzat folds his arm with an expression of befuddlement, “You have to give it to these lead generation sites for taking advantage of this opportunity. If business owners had their own digital strategy and knew how to follow up… Then this would never happen and HomeAdvisor or Zillow would be a thing of the past.“
He goes on, “This is especially true with contractors like in the HVAC or Electrical industry. These guys are terrible sales people. I don’t even mean to say that to be rude. It’s like they think their product will sell itself. They think they aren’t salespeople in the first place, as if its bad to sell something to somebody who needs it. Everyday we are selling or being sold products. Go to the gas station, you buy gas. Go to the grocery store, you buy groceries. Everything is sales, whether these guys like to admit it or not… And a business owner who pays $50 dollars for a lead, but never follows up with the lead more than twice. Then goes and buys a new one. He’s just a damn fool.”
It sounds harsh. Overzat seems brutal.
But isn’t that the reality of business? Sell or be sold, overhead or profit, kill or be eliminated?
This is 2019 and there are companies all over the place—small, medium, and large sized—dropping-the-ball on digital marketing. Or even worse–paying some company to handle it–without any internal investment into their strategy.
Overzat sips from his coffee, places the mug down, and continues, “These are the mediocre companies, the ones that struggle when the economy crashes. It’s the realtors who can’t survive when the housing market crashes with a thud. It’s the HVACer who panics when the AC season winds down and he’s reliant upon shit leads from HomeAdvisor..” His voice raises and eyes widen,”These are the AMATEURS!!!”
Below are a shortlist of marketing strategies that make up Michael Overzat’s Marketing Theory.
Push And Pull Method:
There are five steps to customer acquisition:
1) Need Recognition— Recognizing a problem, or a need for something.
2) Information Search-– An average consumer spends 11 hours researching online before buying product or service. This is comparable to searching online or browsing a car lot. It’s the hunt for the right product that will solve the problem or need.
3) Evaluation Of Alternatives-– This is when the buyer actually sits in the cars, or takes them on a test drive. It comes down to the details, and how much, how fast, what color. It’s weighing the pros and cons.
4) Purchase Decision— This is where the consumer differentiates between the other products and solutions out there. It’s the ‘aha’ moment when they find the one that works. If there is no differentiation between other products or services, then no confident decision can be made.
5) Post Purchase Behavior-– This is what happens after the purchase. Are they satisfied? Did their problem get solved? Would they recommend and become an ambassador for the brand? These are the stages that a buyer goes through before making a purchase. It could actually be broken down into 12 steps:
Attitude, Greeting, Fact-finding, Appraisal/Selection, Demonstration, Trial-close, Write-Up, Negotiation, Close, Delivery, and Follow-up.
But to keep it simple, the customer needs to recognize a problem that must be solved. Once there is a problem, the search begins. After there becomes a list of choices, one product/service has to stand out to solve the problem. And after the problem is solved, depending on how happy the consumer is with the delivery–then that determines if the post purchase behavior is good or bad for the company’s growth.
Now push and pull methods will all depend on what service/product is trying to solve a specific problem. For example, many HVAC companies focus solely on pull marketing–because they want to pull the customer in when there is a need for HVAC services, ie. a furnace or AC breaks.
On the other hand, many realtors focus more on push marketing because they are trying to push out in the marketplace and make the general public aware of their firm so when they are ready to buy–they remember their firm as the one that has the billboards all over the place.
Push Marketing: Outbound such as radio, television, newspaper,
email, direct mail, catalogs, public relations, cold calling/direct sales, and influencer marketing on social media.
Pull Marketing: Inbound such as company websites, blogging, search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM), pay-per-click (PPC) and email marketing.
Of course, there are going to be certain business models that focus more push than pull, or pull than push. But they are all intricately interrelated. For example, HVACers or realtors wouldn’t have to do so much inbound lead services like HomeAdvisor or Zillow if they ranked organically on search engines and had more inbound content development. Web traffic comes from domain authority, and domain authority comes from consistent content sharing. So if these companies focused more on pull marketing content development, then they could drastically reduce their push and pull marketing advertising costs.
That’s why a truly great digital marketing campaign would have both!
Traditional VS. Digital
Where the line between traditional marketing ends and digital begins is comparable to where a river meets the ocean. Today, the ocean is the digital because that’s where the average consumer is spending most of his time. But traditional marketing still flows into digital.
For example, when Michael Overzat first began his marketing career. He spent an immense amount of time cold-calling and sending emails manually. He had very little social media presence and almost no digital advertising campaigns, yet he was utterly shocked to find out that over 56 searchers a month were looking him up by name. Figure that! One guys cold-calling and email-sending was leading to monthly visitors looking him up on Google.
It makes sense.
Here Overzat was pitching products worth thousands of dollars to business owners, calling over 100 business a day, sending out email follow ups. And the business owners were looking him up after he’d reach out to them. It was a great lesson learned: The fact that traditional and digital overlap.
Now scale this up to a company with 30 salespeople cold calling per day, television campaigns, radio, direct mailing… Now you have a company that is being searched up all over the place. And what do the customers find… Well, that’s the point… The customer is funneled into nowhere land because the company invests tens of thousands into traditional marketing but no strong, sturdy digital marketing strategy. Nonsense!
Creating A Brand That Lasts
A brand that lasts is one that has a sales funnel that has low-risk offers up to comprehensive, brand immersing product/ services. For example, Precision Digital Media has low-risk offers like webinars or digital download. There is no risk for the consumer. He can taste test the brand without having to commit fully. On the other hand, Precision Digital Media has thousand dollar digital marketing tools that are on the other end of the product funnel, when the customer is fully immersed in the brand and believes in it.
So many companies out there don’t have a product funnel in the first place. A large part of that has to do with their balance of outflow vs. inflow. For example, a real estate agent with no educational material or content development has a potential customer who is uninformed. That’s why they are looking to list with an agent in the first place. They want an authority. But the agent isn’t an authority in the first place, and doesn’t have any way of informing the prospect as to what sets this reality apart from others. That goes back to ‘Evaluation of Alternatives‘ in the Push And Pull Section. If the prospect can differentiate why this firm is different than others, he never makes a decision to list with them. And if he is uniformed, it’s going to be light years harder to get him to list.
The best thing is to have an informed buyer, not the opposite. And informed buyer can make a decision. An uniformed buyer is indecisive. And it’s the brands job to fill that gap.
That’s where the low-risk to high-risk sales funnel comes in. A free ebook teaching a homeowner about the process of selling a house is a low-risk way of informing them on why they should choose this realtor over others. While listing a house with a realtor is more high-risk.
Creating a brand that lasts is depended upon creating a highly converting sales funnel that uses low-risk offers to inform the potential prospect on what sets this product/service apart from the rest.
The Amateur Vs. The Professional
There is great shortage of Professional marketers in any industry. These are the guys who are constantly learning and progressing toward mastering not just the craft itself, but also selling his craft to the marketplace. The professional never has a shortage of qualified leads, of referrals, of opportunities. The professional’s income has no limit.
While on the other hand, the amateur is always in shortage. The amateur is the one who goes out of business when the economy takes a turn. The amateur’s income is never stable, and his ability to penetrate the market with his product/service is never consistent or in abundance.
Confidence is the key to marketing and selling. So the amateur is never confident in delivering his product or service to the market because he approaches his craft like a pastime not like a profession.
It’s impossible to succeed at any industry with an amateur approach. It’s short road to failure, or in some cases, a long road to mediocrity.
The mediocre is always seeing the grass as, ‘Greener on the other side.” The professional makes the best of what he has, and uses his tools to full potential.
Overzat raps up the interview with a warning, “Look, it may sound harsh. It may hurt your feelings; all this talk about amateurs, mediocrity, and failing… But this is the reality of being an entrepreneur. Failure is always in the back of your mind.”
Mike stands up, paces for a few turns, then steps toward the whiteboard near the wall–grabbing a dry erase marker, removing the cap, touching the red tip to the board, he writes in big, bold letters, “THERE ARE THREE LEVELS OF ACTIVITY: Average level, little activity, wrong activity, and MASSIVE ACTIVITY.”
He steps from the board and explains, “No activity is not an option… Even when you die, your body is decomposing and is taking some level of activity… Little activity is like sleeping in everyday… Average activity is what 99% of people are doing… Wrong activity is exactly what it means, it’s moving in the wrong direction. Then MASSIVE Activity — the only level of activity that ensures success.”
He goes back to his chair and folds his arms, staring off at the ceiling in a face of confident ponderment,“Yes, most people are doing average levels of activity… And that’s the most dangerous form of activity. It’s why so many people are just getting by. They have just enough. It’s quite frankly–shameful… If there is anything you should pull from my theory of marketing… It is to market massively in every sense of the word: Push/pull marketing, traditional and digital. EVERYTHING. That is the only way to ensure creating a brand that lasts and stepping out of the realm of mediocrity to greatness!”