Kris Reid Talks About Growing Your Business and Acquiring Clients You Want on Lion Zeal Podcast
Kris Reid, who is the CEO of Ardor and is also known as The Coolest Guy in SEO, was the guest in a podcast episode of the Lion Zeal Show. He was interviewed by the host, SEO and Digital Marketing Consultant Daryl Rosser, who has had dozens of industry experts on his show. The 50-minute episode is full of helpful ideas on client acquisition and making sales even when you’re still dealing with prospects. Another helpful topic was how to grow your agency without actually adding to your work.
Who is Daryl Rossera and What is Lion Zeal?
Daryl is a perfect of example of how success can come at any age. He has been building websites since he was 13. But it wasn’t until he was 16 that he turned those sites into a business via affiliate marketing. He could have just stopped there and gone back to being a ‘normal’ teenager. But no, Daryl wasn’t done yet.
He started his own SEO Company and became a consultant in digital marketing. He is now one of the most highly recommended experts in the industry and works with high-end businesses all across the globe.
His success at a young age did come with a price, one which he charged to experience. His naivety caused him to form a bad partnership which led to earning and losing $800,000 in less than a year. He became a ‘normal’ teenager—broke, struggling, and living with his parents.
Luckily, with the right mindset and plenty of support and advice, he was able to turn around that business failure. Now, he gets to earn about $20,000 daily. That’s right...in a single day.
Daryl wanted to give back and help others out. So, he created the Lion Zeal blog. It’s a fantastic resource for those who want to learn SEO for their own business or make a successful business from it. The posts also discuss tested and proven strategies. These awesome nuggets of wisdom are also shared on his Lion Zeal Show podcasts, where he interviews real industry experts who run their own successful SEO business.
Want to know how you can start a 6-7 figure per year SEO business? Learn the secret formula at lionzeal.com.
Growing Your Own SEO Empire
Because Kris and Daryl both started and own their SEO companies, they are able to share insightful ideas on how to clinch clients. One of the topics Daryl was really interested in was how Kris acquires sales even when he is still pitching to a prospect. The inquisitive host was also curious how Ardor’s CEO became the coolest guy in SEO.
How Kris Started and Grew His SEO Agency
Before he built Ardor, Kris Reid was following a typical road towards success. He specialised in Software Engineering and used those skills to work for big banks first in the UK, and then around Europe. His job was financially rewarding, but pretty soon, his desire for adventure and passion for acquiring new knowledge and experiences pushed him to make a big change.
He knew there was something bigger, something way cooler than just working for a bank.
He backpacked around the world, and liked living in South East Asia the most. During his travels he discovered digital marketing, and then his whole life changed.
His SEO company started as a backlink agency. In around 2010, Kris built software where clients can buy links. The company had a big email list and he’d just send an email, and pretty soon lots of people were buying their services.
However, just like so many other SEO businesses, they got smashed by Penguin. Lots of sites got de-indexed, and they lost a lot of traffic and earnings.
Luckily, Kris had been sensing for quite some time that the end of backlinks was drawing near. When Penguin unleashed its wrath, his business was already starting to transition into a real agency providing better services. They were offering PBN and Outreach links as well as investigating, monitoring, and fixing clients’ keywords and websites.
It also helped that Ardor brought in several SEO companies on board. As a result, even if they were working with just a couple of clients, they had access to hundreds of websites who were affiliated with the clients.
Today, his company has workers in Chiang Mai, the Philippines, Australia, India, and the UK. Kris is based in Cambodia and works and communicates remotely with his staff most of the time. Despite not being able to be physically present, he is able to continue the growth of his employees and business.
He also shares which business tools have helped him manage his agency and staff better, such as SEMrush, Majestic, Ahrefs, Boomerang, and Teamwork.
How to Grow Your Business without Adding to Your Work
Daryl and Kris also talked about how someone can expand their business without necessarily adding more responsibility to their role as owner or founder.
1. Delegate and Outsource
Kris learned this the hard way. In the earlier years of his business when the agency was really growing well, his zeal to ensure their steady growth caused him to take on more than he could handle. Aside from doing sales, he was also doing project management. He discusses how delegating and outsourcing saved him and the company.
2. Work with the Right People
Ardor’s CEO says to hire people who take pride in their work and who are doing a job that they actually like. Plus, make sure they are a good fit for your company because it’s much easier to work with people you relate with.
Daryl particularly liked Kris’ method of making sure everyone in his company was still doing their job. Once a week he checks in on his team leads and sets weekly goals with them, but then trusts them to get the work done on their end and to effectively manage the staff under them.
4. Educate Yourself Continuously
Reading books, listening to podcasts, building relationships, interacting with like-minded individuals and industry experts are some ways Kris keeps on learning.
5. Find Clients You Actually Want to Work With
Some of the most valuable bits of advice from Kris regarding this point are the following:
“You get greedy and end up with clients who aren’t a good fit. It causes a headache, it upsets your staff and ruins their day.”
“Try to be authentic to yourself and you’ll hopefully find good people to work with”Tips on Acquiring Clients
Daryl was really interested in Kris’ sales approach and how it differs from others.
Kris shares that his dad was a salesman and pushed him into sales job before University. The experience taught him a lot.
One of his favourite lines from his dad is: “If you can sell you’ll never go hungry.”
Kris generously shares his tips for clinching clients.
1. Good Communication Skills
Even when he was still working as a software engineer, he already knew that those who can communicate the best are paid the best. Whether in making software or sales, you need to make a nice design, but also make clients understand why it’s the best strategy.
2. Taking the Time to Help Prospects Understand Your Services/Products
Kris shares he really enjoys speaking with business owners and knowing what they want to achieve.
He emphasises that most people don’t understand SEO, how Google works, or the power of digital marketing, so make it a point to explain it to them clearly.
Daryl also adds that you shouldn’t get too caught up in just making money since it’s not just about making a sale. It’s about helping other businesses grow and earn more.
3. Going Out There
Kris shares that he does podcasting and speaking engagements and goes to conferences where there are business owners who are trying to grow their business.
When the host asks how the Ardor CEO gets clients through podcasting, Kris answers that he tries to be honest and genuine. Too cool, Kris.
4. Offer Them Stability Instead of Overnight Success
Very few businesses can have an infinite number of customers. Present strategies on how their business can estimate their conversion and grow at a stable rate.
5. Start Locally before Setting Your Eyes on the Bigger Market
A huge percentage of Ardor’s earlier customers were from Brisbane. And since Kris was also from this city, his clients found him to be more relatable and authentic. They tended to trust him more easily.
Aside from starting your client acquisition locally, you should also try and focus on the people who are like you. For instance, if you are a skateboarder, then try to talk with others in the skate park.
6. Focus on Entrepreneurs Who Have a Business Mindset
Business owners who understand what it takes to grow will be more eager to invest in strategies and services to get a return.
7. Sell Yourself as an Outsource Option
One-man bands are keen to find a partner agency who can do the SEO and other technical work for them.
8. Present a Visual Estimate of How You Can Help Them Increase Their Conversions
Kris uses a spreadsheet similar to a ROI calculator (according to Daryl).
9. Ask Them Questions About Their Business and Actually Listen
Kris uses a set of questions to essentially try to work out how much the clients know of digital marketing.
Some areas to cover are their sales process, how much their site generates in profits, and what their goals are. These can give you clues on how to build strategies to achieve those goals.
“People love to talk about their business.” So, listen to them, ask questions, and show you genuinely care about their growth and concerns.
10. Make Sure You Engage
Both guys agree that this is very important as it can indicate whether you are making sense to a client and are creating a connection with them.
Turn Prospects into Long-Term Clients
Your ultimate goal when working on your acquisitions is to find clients who will work with you longer. Kris shared one method that has worked for him. This is to be diligent in emailing and monitoring monthly reports. Also, he lets clients commit to short-term contracts, but makes an effort to show Ardor is looking for a partner for forever.
Make Prospects Pay for an Audit
Kris also shares his method of making potential clients pay for an audit instead of doing it for free. Listen to the full Lion Zeal podcast to learn his strategy. You can also access the episode on YouTube or from iTunes.
Want to know more about Kris Reid or his agency Ardor SEO? Then just Google “the coolest guy in SEO”.