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Pheeds Leads - prospecting for customers on a budget
A lot of marketing, especially online, using a passive approach of promoting in ways people will (hopefully) find your offer. The resources below are a more aggressive approach to marketing where instead of customers finding you, you find customers.

Of all the marketing skills, prospecting for TARGETED leads may be the most lucrative and probably the most in demand skill businesses need. "Anyone" can have a web design biz or a food truck, but how do they get actual paying customers? And finding leads and prospects is a valuable skill you can sell to businesses.

This thread is intended for folks on a budget and a lot of these resources have free options or trials. In many cases, you may spend more time to save a little money. However, you can test, learn and modify these strategies with very little cost. And once you start selling, upgrading shouldn't be a problem.

The first resource is LinkedIn. It has two paid upgrades, Premium and Sales Navigator, both with free trials. The most advanced LinkedIn offering for marketing is Sales Navigator.

This is a really good intro into LI Navigator:
How to Use Linkedin Sales Navigator in 2021 (Find Leads & Hidden Features)
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PhantomBuster may be the single most underrated marketing tool. You never hear about it in IM circles, probably because it doesn't have an affiliate program (that I could find...I'd promote it if I could).

It has a 14 day free trial and then a very useful free level after that or go Pro for $30 a month. Depending on your level, PB gives you a number of "slots".This is how many "phantoms" (apps) you can have active at one time. The free level only allows one active phantom at a time. You can delete it and actiavate and use any other phantom, but each time you need to deactivate and activate a phantom if you want to use a new one. The $30 plan gives you 5 slots. There are also time limits for each level on how long you can run phantoms each day. The free level gives you 10 minutes each day. You can do a lot with 10 minutes.

PB has a lot of features, but for the context of this thread we'll use it to "scrape" information about people and businesses and format that info into a spreadsheet.

Here's a list of all the phantoms available to you:

Here's a few highlights:

One PB feature is that it hooks up with LinkedIn free, premium and sales navigator. Anything you can find using LinkedIn, PB can scrape the info and put it into a spreadsheet.

YellowPages Scraper - Scrape info for YP search results or for a list of businesses.

Google Scrapers - Google Maps data scraper and Google Reviews scraper.

Here's an idea for Google Maps. Let's say you run a sandwich shop. Scrape all the businesses in your area and send them a lunch menu through the mail. You can use PB and Google maps to collect data for all sorts of local B2B like window washing, janitorial, custom coupons, etc. You can sell these lists or even manage them as part of your marketing services.

Google reviews - It may not be a bad idea to print them on the back of a post card and send an offer to businesses about your online reputation management services.

Again, you get 10 minutes a day for free from PB. A single Yellow Pages search takes about 3-5 seconds of your time. You get plenty of free time for small jobs. The reason you'll probably want to upgrade is to get more slots. Unless you're doing some major scraping jobs, 10 minutes is plenty.
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Printing and "Mail Merge".

If you live in the US you can print and send postcards. I've sent tons of postcards printed with my home printer I bought 10-12 years ago for $29. There's also printing services online that will print and mail postcards for you at a reasonable price.

I use the "jumbo" postcards that are 8.5 x 5.5 and come two per sheet. The jumbos are actually the same price as the "regular" postcards if you shop around a little. Walmart has 200 jumbo cards for $16 last time I checked. The jumbo are more expensive to mail 52 cents to 36 cents for regular cards, but give some much more space to sell I find them to be worth it. However, if you're mailing in large numbers the postage difference can really add up. I tend to mail in smaller numbers.

Once you have your PhantomBuster data in a spreadsheet, it's really easy to print postcards. First, in Excel clean up the csv file, , sort, etc. You can do something like sort so only businesses with websites are listed at the top or the opposite. You may want to contact businesses with sites with one offer and businesses without sites another. Or, you may want to personalize the postcards so that a business with a website gets a card with their domain name on it, to really catch their attention.

Here's a quick look at using the mail merge feature in Word to address and personalize postcards. The video is about using mail merge for certificates, but the process is the same for pretty much all printed materials.

If you need more help, there are other videos on YouTube for mail merge with more details.

Here's the thing...PhamtomBuster puts all the data into the spreadsheet csv file for you. Once you figure things out and have your cards/envelopes/brochures designed, you can customize and personalize and send them to your printer (or print shop) in literally a few minutes.
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Email Discovery

Contacting people by email is another option. This isn't about spamming people. It's about using your skills and tools to pin-point your targeting on only your very best prospects who would be truly interested in your offer.

I also posted this list below on the Free Trials thread, but here it is again for your convenience.

These can be a literal gold mine for those that know how to use them. Below are email discovery services that will help you find contact info for leads. One thing to consider is how accurate each is. One may seem less expensive but isn't as accurate, so use the free trials and see which work for you.

They are listed in my UN-expert suggested order you check them out.

Name2Email: Free Chrome plugin. Unlimited free searches. Here's a quick intro video for it:

These are email discovery services. Most also use a Chrome extension.
Apollo - Free 150 a month - $19  unlimited
LeadLeaper - Free 100 a month - $29 2000 Credits - Free 200 a month - $49 5000
Voila Norbert: Free 50 a month - $49 1,000
Get Prospect - Free 100  a month - $49 1000
Find That Email: Free 50 free a month - $29 for 500
FindThatLead: 50 free month - $49 for 5000
Hunter: 50 free a month - $49 for 500
Anymail Finder: 90 searches free - $49 for 1000 50 free a month - $39 for 1,000

This free tool will "guess" at possible email addresses based on a given domain and automatically creates a list of possible email addresses.
? combine these email discovery tools with the data you scraped using PhantonBuster. There's all sorts of ways you can benefit from these combinations.
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Some random thoughts:

I do not claim to be an expert on cold calling, but I do know one thing and it isn't debatable. When cold calling (this is when whoever you are contacting doesn't know you at all) you MUST personalize each email, postcard, envelope for the specific person you are trying to reach. We use words like "prospects" and "leads" but these are actually individual people. These folks are bombarded with offers. To have a chance you MUST connect with them.

I get emails all the time about people wanting to submit a guest article on one of my sites. Over 90% of these emails don't even tell me which site of mine. I have many sites and I don't have a clue which one they are talking about. Not only should they tell me which site, it would greatly improve their chances if they told me something specific about the site or page. I want to know they're real and not just some bot.

Use their name in the email subject. Add their website domain name on the postcards. Mention something specific like "You're probably competing for customers with Acme Landscaping and General Grass". You can mention competitors as a means of leverage or as showing empathy for their situation. Now you're making it personal.

For more Google "tips for cold calling".

Printing - Try to print at 300 DPI. I believe this is Word's default but check it. Google "how to set default dpi Word". Also, most images you find online are for online, which has a low quality of 72-96 dpi. If you are using stock images for print from a site like Pixabay ALWAYS download the largest size then shrink it to fit in Word. Also remember certain colors like florescence and metallic colors and many gradients don't print well.

Legal issues / CANN Spam regulations:
Can Spam Act - Google
Is it Legal to Email Someone - Google
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Jumbo Post Cards for the's Walmart's blank jumbo postcards, 200 for $15.99.

They are basically the same price per card as the blank postcards that are half the size. Again, the postage is the difference.

To mail 1000 postcards:
$520 jumbo
$360 regular

Even if you only mail in small batches, over time you may easily get to 1000 postcards, so the math needs to be considered. However, I believe the extra postage for a card that is twice as big is a great investment. I don't have any actual data to back this up...just call it a strong gut feeling.

I've heard some say that small postcards are good because they often fall out of a stack of mail. I can't say this is wrong but I'd rather have something twice as big because it not only has twice as much space for sales copy, it being twice as big makes it more likely to be seen IMO.

Again, I'm not a postcard design expert and most of the online advice is about graphic design and making things look pretty. I tend to focus more on the copy. I try to use a couple of images with bright colors (that print well) and that also act like a pattern interrupt to grab attention. I want images that really stand out that also are connected with the "theme" of the copy.
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