Day 133 – Marketing Makeover

My daily walks keep getting easier and I’m happy with the progress. And while we are eating well, we aren’t losing any weight at the moment. My girlfriend Chris suggests we probably aren’t eating enough so we will work on that more tomorrow.

I spent the day working, had a good/intense client call, and got some good stuff done.

Once my girlfriend Chris got home from the second day of the teacher conference we were talking about her tutoring gig. She has taken on a couple of tutoring clients after school for the last few years. I think we started talking about this because she mentioned hearing another teacher at the conference talking about tutoring and talking about a pretty high hourly rate.

That got me thinking about rates and business. I suggested to Chris, why don’t you double your rates, look for more specific clients and put up some new advertisements. We went through an exercise to identify her ideal customer and after a couple of rounded ended up getting pretty specific on the kind of child she likes to work with, children with various learning disabilities. She wrote up notes on the ways she helps these children which is more than just raising their grades. And after all of the notes were laid out, it was very easy for her to write a pretty strong advert that lays out what she does and why these kids need it.

Posting on Craigslist she has one response so far and based on what we know, that one seems well with her customer range and also from what they said will likely not blink at all at what Chris will say it costs. This lead might not go anywhere but it was an encouraging start. This is also completely the wrong time to post for tutoring gigs so she will post again in early September.

I thought this was a great result and fun to see what I have learned so far about marketing in action and working.

I also learned about a change in Craigslist. Back in March, they started charging $5 for each post in “services” and “gigs” where you might post about a tutoring job or that you are a web designer looking for clients. Those places used to be super noisy with spam like posts and people charging super low prices for work. Instead, for $5 you can end up on the first page of “services/lessons” for a month (there were about 110 posts in the Minneapolis area). “services/computers” was only a little longer and in both places the quality of the posts looked much higher.

I’ll be posting on computers tomorrow because it feels like a very low competition area to list my services. In the computer section, the web design folks were all very generic in what they were offering. Nothing for specific markets, etc. I’ll be going in offering to help non-profits with a different sort of message. I’m excited.