In this agency success interview, I chat with Zach Winsett from Tree Service SEO. He is a Two Comma Club Winner & has managed to land 26 NEW clients in only 3 months! Listen to this episode as he unpacks the shifts he made to get this type of accelerated growth. This episode is packed full of insight—don’t miss it.
Outline of This Episode
[0:37] How Zach ended up in Tree Service SEO
[8:54] Unpacking Zach’s paid traffic strategy
[11:01] The upside of launching a referral program
[18:12] How to generate and close leads
[21:20] How did Zach choose this niche?
[26:07] The process of writing a book
[29:45] How Zach runs Facebook ads
[33:15] The key to successful YouTube ads
[35:05] Don’t worry about competition
[37:07] How to win a Two Comma Club award
[39:24] The gear Zach is using for this episode
[42:39] How to retain your clients for the long-haul
[47:04] What fulfillment looks like for Tree Service SEO
[51:42] The three lessons Zach has learned
[56:10] Focus on providing top-notch service
How Zach landed in tree service SEO
Zach runs multiple SEO agencies, but his current primary focus is in the tree service industry. Zach launched Tree Service SEO in 2015 after a family member in the industry asked him to help source some leads for the business. The venture went extremely well, so Zach decided to forge ahead and write a book: Online Marketing Secrets for Tree Service Companies.
He ended up chatting with a tree service contractor working in his neighborhood and pitched him his service. He turned into his first client—who’s now been with him for FIVE years. Over the last five years, Zach has attended the TCI Expo and local climbing competitions to market his business. He’s shifted his focus to paid traffic to take advantage of warm inbound leads.
Pitching to the tree service industry can be an easy sell. They invest millions of dollars in the trucks and cranes they use for their service so they NEED to maintain a consistent stream of work. Instead of paying per lead with Angie’s or Home Advisor, Zach charges a flat fee to keep their phones ringing every single day. Listen to hear how he makes it happen!
How Zach generates leads for his clients
Zach primarily focuses on ad campaigns (Facebook, Google, and YouTube). His Facebook strategy is all about creating a clean small list. He’ll start with a scraper and upload two custom audiences: emails and phone numbers. He further narrows the target audience and limits it to “business owners”. In choosing this strategy he targets about 15,000 people consistently and stays in front of them through retargeting.
Zach’s YouTube strategy is genius—he targets his competitors’ videos. He’ll set it up so that whenever possible his ads are played in their videos. If a customer clicks on the ad they’ll get funneled to a basic landing page with a case study video, customer results, and a link to schedule a call with him.
Zach takes his customer service a step further and coaches his clients on how to handle inbound leads—even ones that were meant for a competitor. You give yourself a massive competitive advantage if you shift from just focusing on generating leads to helping your clients close on those leads.
How should you choose a niche? Should you worry about competition? Keep listening to hear Zach’s take! PLUS he shares how to win the Two Comma Club award.
How to retain your SEO clients
There are a few primary ways Zach retains clients—and you should do the same:
First, you MUST communicate consistently with your clients. Zach started a Facebook group for his clients to share new ideas, nuggets of wisdom, or new strategies that he’s learned.
Secondly, find ways to validate your customer’s ROI. Zach gives his clients something tangible each month to see their ROI. Typically he uses High Level to general an automatic report that shows the number of calls they get and how it translates into profit.
Zach calculates the value of an opportunity based on what his customer typically makes with any given job. He then takes that number and multiples it by the number of leads generated to show them how those leads convert to revenue.
Zach shares how he fulfills his services for his clients, so keep listening!
Three lessons Zach’s learned that changed everything
Zach’s #1 piece of advice is to fail fast. You WILL fail in any new endeavor, but you have to learn from it, don’t let it trip you up, and keep going. Everything Zach has learned has been self-taught—from ad campaigns to building websites.
Secondly, Zach recommends hiring a mentor that knows what they’re doing. Don’t be afraid to invest in yourself and your skills and learn from the best. They’ll help you scale your business to the next level. Pro tip—make sure that your core values align.
Above all, Zach points out you must differentiate yourself by offering top-notch customer service. In his words: “If you focus more on providing a top-notch service than you do your own revenue you’re gonna be okay…everything else will take care of itself.”
This is the seven figure agency podcast discover the strategies and techniques to grow a highly successful and profitable digital marketing agency with your host, Josh Nelson.
Alright, Hello and welcome. Thank you so much for joining us today for the seven figure agency podcast. This is part of our agency success interview series where we’re interviewing highly successful digital marketing agencies from across the country. And it could be could not be more excited today to be joined by Zach win set from pre service SEO. Say hi, Zach. Hey there How y’all doing? So Zack, before we dive in, just kind of introduce yourself to the you know, introduce yourself so listeners kind of tell us your your story from a high level.
Yeah. So, um, you know, I started out in college, didn’t know what I wanted what I wanted to be when I grew up. I started working. When I went to school, I started working with a small computer shop Basically was hired to assemble computers and didn’t know much about anything back then as far as technology wise. And then started, you know, being computer techs, computer tech in the same in the same company there and worked my way up. And then they started, they had a server in the back room. They had a lot of local, small websites on that server. So I was really intrigued with that. And I was like, how do I learn this stuff? Right? So I started playing with the front page, and then Dreamweaver and all this kind of stuff front page, and basically started playing around the Google, you know, trying to figure out how can you get you know, in Google, this is back in GFC. These days, okay, this is a long time ago. So
cities front page you’re talking about, you’re talking my language. I remember those tools
a long time ago, right? So
basically, try to figure out how to get websites, random Google, things like that. Started dabbling. With Google Ads back in 2002, I got banned within the first three days of being on Google AdWords didn’t know what I was doing. basically had to start from scratch. You know, you’ll hear that word a lot starting from scratch because it happened like I had to hit the reset button so many times with everything I’ve tried to do. So, started getting businesses using Craigslist driving leads them through Craigslist, then merge over to doing Google ads and manage over over $1 million in Google ads in the last five years for clients and then you know, started thinking okay, started doing this affiliate marketing thing I was like, maybe try this out for a little bit. So bounce over there a little bit and made a basically ranked 100 well over 100 web mini websites on Google and was doing really well with affiliate marketing and then Then all of a sudden, the panda data when these animal animals picked up on me and just wiped everything off the map, so I’m like, shoot, I gotta start over again. So I went and I just basically I was like, I like driving leads to customers, I think that was a really good thing I was doing. At the time, I was working full time as an IT administrator, and IT manager for a software company in Atlanta. And so I knew a lot about servers, you know a lot about things like that technology wise. So I was trying to find a good match for me, you know. And I pivoted more towards his lead generation, and started in 20. Oh, actually, 2015 is when I went full time doing what I do now. Nice. So prior to that, for the last 14 years prior to that, I was basically working full time during the day and a night working three or four hours a night. I did that even on the weekends. So trying to learn as much as I possibly could trying to figure out what worked what didn’t work. I mean, it was just It was crazy. So that’s, you know, latest episode today. I was heavy in stem cell doctors from working with doctors in the medical field and driving leads to them. That’s how I got the two comma club award behind me.
Congratulations, by the way, that’s a massive accomplishment. Thank you.
Yeah. And things going really well, you know, ramping a lot of doctors, you know, they, this is a stem cell is a very, it’s kind of a trendy thing. In the medical industry, it’s all cash based. There’s no insurance coverage thing like that was a lot of high end. You know, it’s not uncommon to see a 5000 $12,000 deal, we’ll call it a table or sim cell. So driving leads for that was very lucrative. Now, that was prior to COVID-19. So COVID-19 hit, and then all of a sudden, all these doctors are like, we can’t even see any patients. So a lot of a lot of the doctors I was working with, they were doing seminars, so I was driving leads to get people into a seminar. Mm hmm. in restaurants and things like that. Well, you know how that’s all been just totally obliviated. Yeah. Pretty much lost 80% of the agency overnight, with stem cell. Now, luckily for me, I have something my back pocket. I’ve been doing this tree service SEO is when I first started 2015. And basically what I did was I went out and the first thing I did was I started branding. I wrote a book. That’s the first very first thing I did. I didn’t have any idea about Tree Service much, except I had a family member that owns a tree service company. And they were like, Hey, we need some help getting leads. Can you help us figure this out? And I said, Sure, me, me, me play around with this. I can figure it out and did really well and they’re like, why don’t you just roll this out to everybody? I’m like, that’s a really good idea. I said why? Have any I don’t have any clients? I don’t how do I get clients? so crazy enough? I had trees I needed to take down my backyard. Okay. So while the guy was out here, they had the whole crew here working, cutting out 14 pine trees. I was like, I’m gonna go talk with this business owner and see if I can get them on board. And we don’t talk with him. He didn’t join, of course,
would have been nice.
Yeah, but I kept going, I didn’t give up. So our, our, our community here, our neighborhood was having didn’t have some trees cut down in interest of our neighborhood. And I went up to that guy that was cutting those trees down. So to my book, I said, Hey, I’m starting this business out. I’d love to have you as a client. You know, I just kind of came to him up front, you know, didn’t play games or anything. I said, Look, I can get you leads. And he’s like, Really? I was like, Yeah, but so we started working together. And he’s been a client for five years straight. Wow. And that’s my first client. And then I went from there went to the CCI expert, have done
like a tree service industry Expo is Yes it is.
It’s I did that two years back to back. One was in Baltimore, I think the other was in Philadelphia, and then also started going to the local climbing competitions. so crazy enough in this niche. There are state wide competitions, there’s also regional competitions. And these guys get together, all the climbers get together and they climb trees they do. It’s like a, like an obstacle course in the trees. It’s crazy. And so I set a little booth up right there and let’s pass on information and I went in a couple clients that way. So start just building up you know, just building and building and building. And now I focus more on paid traffic, driving leads in from my agency through paid traffic and then also still go to Expo, I still do those things like that, but not as much. I’m focused now more in paid traffic inbound leads are already warm, versus me trying to beat the streets with, you know, it just is hard. It’s just tough to do those things that are you better going with a lot of energy when you do those kinds of expos and things because it takes it out of you completely.
introverts, like you and me, right? Absolutely. And basically,
I made a mistake. I went to both of those expos by myself. So you imagine after three days of being on the floor of I mean, it was nuts. It was just like, I can feel my feet anymore. I get on the airplane just completely exhausted fly back. But yeah, I mean, I wouldn’t recommend doing that. At least if you’re going to do expos bring somebody along with you that can help you, you know, get things off the ground. But in the last three months, I’ve really focused on paid traffic. Now I unpacked a little bit from And last intensive we did with how I’ll do that, how I set up the page and the ad and all that. But I’ve taken that a step further, and I made a more aggressive ad. So I started pointing out tree service companies that, hey, you’ve been on the fence way too long. This is an hour she went to my computer and showed them results of current clients. I said, Hey, this is this result here. This is this one over here. And I started unpacking all this information. And basically, it’s gotten their attention so much that in the past three months, I’m all now on board at 31 clients, I still have probably eight or 10 more, I just need to call back. I mean, it’s crazy.
So 30, so just plus 31 new clients over the last three months predominantly through Facebook ads, which is pretty like a pretty niche niche within the niche. And it sounds like some type of retargeting to the people that saw the ad but hadn’t bought
yet. Exactly. Nice there. I do a front end ad and Do a 30 day view that shows people that see the video in the last 30 days a retargeting ad. In basically a retargeting. ad is hey, these are the ones that started the last time you saw me on Facebook. Well, these are the ones that just came on, here’s their new results. So it’s like a follow up of the last video, huh?
And how many how many different? Is it just one or is it a secret series? I have two videos.
Okay. And so the first one is just an intro. And then I have a follow up retargeting ad video that basically says, Hey, this is where these guys are now that they’ve just started up. So it’s like a follow up the, you know, new clients. I love it
is that we’re almost all of these 31 new clients came from exactly I’ve
started referral program yet either. I mean, that’s my next step. I’m working on that right now and got a lot of guys that are on fire. They’re like, you know, by giving the lucrative referral program is so take off to the If I feel like so,
no doubt, just a curiosity, what do you thinking on that front in order to stimulate that activity.
So what I’m going to do is basically get them into a group on Facebook. And I already have a group formed. I’ve got a couple guys in there right now they’re sharing their information. I dropped tidbits information in there as well. And then what I do is, I’m going to offer them the referral program through that through that portal. So inside that group are only current clients. Okay.
So are you thinking of like a one time fee? Are you thinking of, like, for every client, you’re for me, I’ll give you a percentage of that. Like, how are you thinking of structuring that referral program?
It’s going to be a it’s gonna be a recurring thing. Okay. Not only just on the front end, I want them to know that they are part of the system. They are part of a tree service SEO and been able to grow their business as well as they get reversed some of their fees every month. So it’s a win win for everyone. One.
Nice, and that will just that will even accelerate this this growth. If you think about if even 10% of those guys started referring other people into the program, because they’re finding it, they like the service, but they’re also getting residual growth from it. Exactly. That’s right. It will start to snowball, right? Yep. I love it. So I mean this this is awesome. And so alright, so you had really, really successful agency serving the stem cell space COVID kind of put the kibosh on that for a little bit. You pivoted back to the tree service business, massive momentum about how many clients at this point in the tree tree trimming world are you serving?
Close to 65.
Nice. And let’s talk a little bit about the service fulfillment model and what is it you do for a typical typical tree trim client?
Yeah, so one of the main issues these guys have is they have invested millions of dollars in equipment. Hmm tree trees. equipment is so expensive chipper trucks, cranes you name it. I mean these guys are sinking. It’s not uncommon to have a truck that costs $200,000 so they have to keep work coming in constantly because when they go out into a tree removal job that’s it like there’s no more work for them to do their so they have to constantly get new leads every single day to stay busy unless they’re doing tree trimming, right so basically what I do for them is basically their phone ringing every single day. That’s the one of the biggest hurdles these guys have is having consistent leads coming in. Now they’re doing Angie’s List or doing home advisor they’re doing all this stuff but home advisor as you know they’ll go out and resell the real they’ll sell that that same leave three to 20 times basically and they’re paying a lot of money per lead. So why do is offer a flat rate fee that covers ad spin it covers five perfect covers ad spin and covered Direct Mail, anything like that and when a build out, so I’m offering them is basically most impactful way of getting their phone ring. We’re doing paid ads, mailers. As a long term strategy. We also do SEO. We also do websites. But that’s on the back. That’s more of like a backburner and a longer term approach. If someone says to me right now I’m hungry, I need leads coming in like tomorrow, my family won’t eat. I start ads, we get those off the ground. I can generally get them leads within the next two or three days once they sign up. Wow.
So So it sounds like you’re actually eating the the paid search spent as well as just a flat fee that includes
managing paid search. The flat fee includes the management management side, they are charged separate, so I get their credit card information and put that on file with Facebook or Google. Okay,
good. I wish I was clear for exactly, yeah. Yeah. Okay. And then so so what do you charge for Like in a typical scenario, you’re doing a website SEO pay per click, direct mail, you know, mailers out to their local area.
Alright, so basically the if they want to have leads coming in on a consistent basis, and they’re actually trying to just base it on how big their crew is, if they ever they were once once you know, their three man crew, and they can handle maybe five or six jobs a week, right? So we focus more on paid traffic with those guys. If they want to really blow it up, then we do direct mail on top of the paid ads. Hmm. So I’m charging them on a basis on a monthly basis. About 1600 dollars is for the just, that’s just for paid ads only. Right? So the way I price my service is based on if they can recoup their costs in one or two treat removal jobs, then it pays for itself. That’s the way I sell it basically. So when I Give them 10 to 15 new jobs, then they easily see the return on investment they stick around. No, that’s what I focus on more. Anything else is return on investment, especially the tree service industry.
the mailers are basically one offs, okay, only no way cuz I target a certain target a certain area, look at demographic data, look at all this information. And then I send direct mail pieces out to those very specific areas that actually go on Google Earth and look at how many trees they have in that area. Look, the types of trees and I try to make sure it’s not a new neighborhood, a new establishment that has no trees at all. Do you know how they build some neighborhoods? Now they just put out a clear cut off. Right, exactly. There’s no sense in sending mailers there are apartment buildings. So look at all that information. And basically send mailers there. And always use call tracking numbers and all that stuff. And also with any of the packages, I get Give them high level, I give them access to high level. I set them up as I give them away this access. So you
don’t know it’s a software that kind of automates the tracking and the nurturing of the lead. Right. Right. Okay, sorry, keep going just for those that don’t know what high level is.
Yeah, so I give them access that unless you love that program, helps them keep track of their return on investment, keep track of their leads. Because a lot of these guys he imagined these guys, the guy giving out estimates, maybe also the one climb in the tree. And some of these industries, I mean, it’s just they are, they were, a lot of these guys started out as climbers and now they’re business owners, so they just kind of go back and forth sometimes, but they’re not really good at handling leads. I give them a system that has all the leads in there has automatic, you know, automated text messaging follow up and all that stuff for them. It’s huge. That way they’re able to get out and serve more people and do in close more deals basically. So
super Smart. So it’s not just generating the leads, it’s nurturing the leads and tracking the return on investment that makes it a really a no brainer value proposition for the clients you serve. Exactly. Yeah, that’s it. That’s awesome. How just like you’re out how deep Do you go with the high level stuff? Is it just for a lead that comes in a quick text message? And then like a follow up every couple of days? Or how deep Do you go with those campaigns?
I got some clients that are pretty deep. We’re doing we’re doing types of follow ups based on the actions they take. We’ve also most of them, though, are just simple emails and text message follow up. Just trying to keep that lead warm enough to where they can go out and schedule an estimate.
Yeah, yeah, cuz we found it to be a big a big game changer in that most of these companies, even the bigger ones, you know, if the person calls in and leaves a message, they’re they’re out right, they’ve moved on with their life. But if you can put automation in place where a webform comes in, text message goes back right away. way a phone call, hey, you know, just wanted to reach out you call our office about this, just that instantaneous response, the email and text message and phone has like almost doubled or tripled the conversion rate on the leads that would have otherwise gone stale.
That’s right. Exactly. That’s amazing.
And in your market, there’s not you know, these guys don’t have really robust systems, right? I mean, there’s not like a industry standard CRM or anything at this. Well, there’s a couple of guys, there are a couple of software packages out there, they’re very expensive. But when I can provide them as a as an add on, I don’t even charge them extra for high level I just give it to them. It’s just huge. Yeah, it’s a no brainer for them. I think it’s super small agencies that are watching this. You know, you can give yourself a massive competitive advantage if you shift your focus from just generating leads to actually helping them close those leads into jobs. And that’s what you can do with a platform like this really well structured and Willie well thought out.
Yes. And also also coached him also has To handle leads. So I have some guys that are very bad on the phone, they have no idea how to talk to clients or customers or prospects. You know, like for the Google ads, for example, you may get clicks for a competitor, right? So they call up thinking they’re calling someone else. And, you know, that happens a lot. So I touched them and say, listen, that’s the lead. I mean, you can still turn that into a potential lead. So I walked them through on that process of how to say, Hey, I’m also a Tree Service Company. I’m give you a free estimate, when can we schedule an estimate? And a lot of guys who do that do really well. The ones that don’t do well in Google ads are the ones that say, I really don’t want those competitor leads, I don’t know how to how to handle them, and they don’t want to handle those are the ones that don’t do well with paid traffic, especially with Google ads.
Hundred percent you got to train you got to train your client on how best to convert those leads into sales. Right. And, you know, if one in 10 other leads happens to be a competitor, which it might even be more than that. Just what you did there spending a couple minutes educating them on that this is gonna happen. And this is what you should say when it happens can mean the difference between a failed campaign and a profitable campaign for that particular client, because exam free job basically pays for your whole program. Right? That’s it? Yes. Yeah. Smart. Really good, really good stuff. So there’s a question in here, and they’re asking, how did you choose your this is something that everyone wants to know when they especially in the beginning of their agency? Can you talk a little bit about that?
Yes. So what I started choosing agency, I hadn’t really know what I was doing.
what I would say is that if I was going to go into another niche right now, the first thing I would look at is, what is the revenue generated on one job? And can I fit a service that can create an offer that’s going to pay for itself with one or two jobs? So if there’s a niche out there that has a high recurring, even if it’s a recurring thing or like a high end, you know, pest control or something like that, something like you know, anything that’s recurring, or if it’s a one time, high revenue, job, that desktop niche I would focus on, first and foremost, you got to have the revenue there to cover your costs. Plus, you got to have the ad spin and all the things you’re doing, you have to make sure you got that covered to reduce ROI for these guys, if you if your margins are running too tight, you’re not going to be able to sustain very long, I mean, this is all gonna work. That’s the reason I did the stem cell thing. You know, I mean, it’s that doctor, we produced over $5 million in sales for them. And within one year, we spent $1 million on Facebook ads and generate $5 million in sales instead. So
You know, so it’s just, that’s a really good one is examples of a good niche because it has high high value on the front end.
Yeah, no doubt. So it sounds like though you wind up with tree trimming because of a family member and you kind of like, hey, look, let’s let’s kind of see whether there’s some wheels here. Right?
And sometimes the niche like the kind of the niche finds you, right? I was not intentionally thinking plumbing initially. But right, we got a client in plumbing way gotten great results, and then it just kind of blossomed into what it is today. Exactly. So it’s not you know, it’s not always a strategic selection process. But thinking about transaction value, making sure that there’s a propensity to spend, making sure that the, the, the ROI is going to be evident in what you do for them. I think it’s kind of the point to hammer home there. Right?
Exactly. Very, very important. And don’t be afraid like if you have someone come to your house to do work and their local contractor, don’t be afraid to pitch him, I mean, a roofer for example, it comes to your hospital roof on your house Roof Repair, great time to talk we’ll talk with talk with him. You know, everyone who comes to my house do work, get a pitch. Explain this.
By the way, let’s talk about how you’re generating leads for this nice guy.
That’s right, because I owe more than one agency out this is Tree Service but also on others as well. So it’s, you know, once you get one hammer down and nail down and focus really hard on then you can jump to another but that’s another mistake. I see people make a lot isn’t the beginning they jump from, oh, this didn’t work. So I’m gonna go here to another niche and then over here, I’m like, No, don’t do that. Stay in that niche until it’s successful. And then you can jump to another but don’t do that until you have some, you know, some proof and results in that niche because you can be so close to making it work and then just quit and then you just lost it all. All that momentum is gone.
Hundred percent. That’s a great that’s a great tip. So we talked about how you got the Nish. I think we talked a little little bit about how you got your first client. It sounded like it was a family member did that family member pay? Or was that just you like, hey, look, I’ll do this for you. And let’s I was
that was a free service, I was basically getting learning in the ropes. Basically, I was my guinea pig. how I can help them and get give them results.
It’s more, I think it’s a smart move. I mean, sometimes you have to, whether it’s a family member, somebody that you happen to know, you know, you don’t need to make money, right? Just validate your own mind, get your own confidence, build your own, like proof of concept that you can do something for this particular vertical, you can generate a result and then build it up from there.
Exactly. That’s right.
So you kind of you tested some stuff did they pay for the spanner when this case was an all organic type focus, they paid for the spend
on that on the ad portion.
Now, I built the website, you know, basically I’ve invested time, right? It wasn’t as much money as I invested. It was Just the time it took for me to learn the ropes.
Yep, yeah, powerful, powerful play. And then it sounds like the very next thing you did was you wrote a book, right? Yes. Based on kind of your hypothesis of what you were doing there. Talk to us about that, because I think that’s a smart move.
Yeah, so wrote the book. It’s out on Amazon still. It’s really it’s 2016. I think when this one was published. The book still sells. It does really well. Now, when I went to trade shows the reason I wrote this book was when I went to my first trade show, the expo TCI Expo. Instead of handing out business cards, I shipped over 500 books to the Expo and handed these out as business cards when I got my business card and a sales letter actually inside the book.
So I got a lot of leads just from doing that on
the book positions you differently than anybody else. Not only are you saying you specialize in Tree Service, but you actually took the time to author a book that positions you as somebody that really knows what the heck’s going on? And if they did read it, it leads them straight to your door right to schedule a time to chat.
Yes, exactly. So the book is written in a way where it, it goes into why they do should do things, but not how they should do things. I think that’s important when you’re writing a book, have a focus where it shows them. Don’t give them all the secrets, right? You’re not supposed to do that. But not all the how tos. But why it is important to do the things that are in that book. Yeah. And then for him straight to you.
I love it. So if we look at this, like a domino effect, you decided, Okay, I’ll try and work with the family member that’s entry service. You said, Okay, I kind of have some validation here and they can generate results. You decided, Okay, let’s find an association where they’re going to be gathered, right? And so you went to that and you’re like, well, in order to be there with some level of authority, why don’t I publish a book that way I have something valuable to hand out at the at the association. Exactly. Right. And then kind of dominoed From there, how many clients would you say you took away from the the initial play at the expos and things like that?
I would walk away. So for them to get a book, they had to give me their information. Right? So capture their name, email address, phone number, the business they were with. I basically had a form I would fill out on a clipboard.
Yeah, not old school just like me, right?
This is old school, right? And I end up walking away with about 200 leads off one Expo. Holy moly. That’s
impressive. And it was just you by yourself. Just be myself. Yeah, we’re exhausted then.
And it wasn’t just the here’s the crazy thing about some of these expos as well. You’re not going to be there just to get leads for actual Tree Service business owners or whatever niche you’re in business owners. There are other companies there that are also needing help. I had people coming to me equipment owners, things like that many distributors. Hey, I heard you do I heard you can generate leads I heard you can help, you know, build businesses online. I need some help. And I had actual business owners coming up to me saying, hey, I need help. So almost half of those were actual spin offs. Hmm It’s crazy. So what happened was a lot of it was e commerce. So I started doing e commerce in sales online basically trying to figure that out. And basically getting you know, stores and stuff like that for some of these distributors as well, just a spinoff from just going to the Expo.
Wow. So got the niche, went to the expo landed a bunch of clients dialed in even further, kind of what the service model was, how to serve these clients, how to get them great results. And it sounds like you’ve pivoted from there to more of the of the paid search, like leveraging the results you’ve gotten for these other guys running Facebook ads, is that right?
I run Facebook and Google and also YouTube.
So All three.
So Facebook clearly is you targeting a custom audience, right of these guys that are tree service companies which, you know a lot of us watching you can you really target that granularly to say I don’t just want contractors I don’t just want home service contract I’m so now I want specifically companies that run tree trim service companies. right a little bit about how that’s even possible.
Yes. So the first thing you do is the data is the most important thing when you’re doing any type of ads or anything like that. So you wanna make sure the data you’re putting into your targeting is as clean as possible. So what I do is I use scrapers. These seven lead finders one, I’ve got several that I use stripe as many of those leads as possible. So whatever niche you’re in, and then what I do is I clean that data. I’m gonna go in and use never bounce something like that to clean that information up. I’m gonna try and get their phone Numbers, match all that up as possible, as much as possible, and then upload that data into Facebook. So upload two custom audiences into Facebook. One is, one of them is the emails, and the other is the phone numbers. I do two separate, two separate uploads,
a lot of people might not have the same email or phone number and you can kind of
match one or the other. Exactly, because a lot of people just sit there and upload their whole list up there and Facebook doesn’t, it doesn’t find them it finds a mismatch mismatch or whatever and throws it out. So outlawed two separate lists. That has been very helpful, especially in niches where you can’t target exactly, you know, business owners. Now the other thing too is once you upload that data, there’s a filter on Facebook, as you can say, must also include and that’s where you can type in business owner. Hmm. So you can filter down not only that data you have Yes, that might be true. commerce in there, there might be other
types of wasted that’s wasted eyeballs, right?
wasted eye analysis. So now you just filter that down to show it only to the business owners in that group in that data set
is that I’ll usually do it you’ll so you’ll scrape the seven lead finder and then you’ll filter it down. And then you’ll select business owner that way the list is pretty small at that point, right? By the time you limit to your matches and your business owners it is the list is not very big at all. I think 14,000 is look at where I’m at with my target. So that small group is just seeing you again and again and again with this. Yes, it is. Yes. Awesome. Do you then look alike that list or have you found that to be effective in your in your world?
not as effective? Okay, um, look alikes, you start getting, again, the tighter your data, the better your results are going to be. So now you’re doing look alikes, Facebook’s trying to guess based on likes and interests that people have, and it might not be 100% match What the data you put in, so I make sure that I just try to focus on the data that put in
love it powerful, powerful stuff, get put up, put a comment in here, if that’s useful, he just kind of shared some pretty, pretty cool secret sauce here. Um, so that’s how you’re doing the Facebook targeting talk about talking about Google. And, um, what was you said, Google and something else a YouTube? Mm hmm.
So YouTube is very cool. So you can actually target your competitors. If you have competitors in your marketplace. They’re also marketing agencies or whatever they are. You can target their audience direct on YouTube by using URLs. So if they have if they have videos about video channel, you can target their videos you can have your ad placed in front of those videos. You can target their URLs, the websites
with the with Google ads.
I drive traffic based on key is all based on keywords. You know, search. So type in things like, for example, my niche will be Tree Service websites. Anything Do you think a business owner might be looking for online to help them get more business is the keyword you want to be using?
And so that’s for specific, like Google AdWords to bring them to your page to get them to the to the strategy says Exactly, yes. Excellent. That’s awesome, man. Very, very, very cool stuff. And then it sounds like you’re taking them through a through a funnel that then also then retarget. It’s the second and third tier of that funnel.
Exactly. Great sale office, the whole flow minutes.
Basically, it’s a landing page, very basic landing page with results on it, maybe a case study video in there a link for them to start to schedule a call. Nice that call and then that goes into high level and that gives them updates keeps them warm until that schedule appointment That’s the way I have it set up.
Slam Dunk, slam dunk. Very, very cool. There was a question here by I think it was recorded, I don’t want to miss it. And he was saying how worried should I be about competition within my niche, and other people kind of knowing what the niche is and that type of thing?
I wouldn’t worry about that.
plenty of opportunity just about any space.
Exactly. I mean, you gotta think also. So only the way I set my stuff is only work with one Tree Service Company service area. Okay. There’s a reason why I do that. The reason why is because I want to be competing with myself in my ads on paid traffic, the Google and all this other stuff. So it’s like, I’m gonna focus on one niche service area. And so that way, there’s room for someone else. There’s plenty of room. I’m only taking one out of the service area.
Yeah, same, same here. Same with most agencies. And so if you think about it, have you done the math in terms of how many closed markets you can or how many tree service companies you can work? With across the country, probably
Wow. So and how many there’s 10s of thousands of companies in any space. So even if you had complete market share, there’d be room for other companies to serve in different ways. So this whole worry about, you know, multiple people in one space or competition will just take it off the table, focus on yourself, focus on going out serving your clients focus on growing your business. And we there’s room for all of us to flourish, I think is the message, Zach? Absolutely.
I think a lot of people get hindered in that they think, Oh, goodness, someone’s already in that niche. I can’t do that. No, that’s not the case. When I was doing the stem cell stuff. There are tons of companies out there that were doing stem cell, the same kind of thing they’re driving leads to seminars. What I did was I kind of reverse engineer what they were doing and try to do it better. That’s it. puts you on the spot spin on it. Don’t copy what they’re doing, but put your own spin on.
Yeah. Good, good insight someone else was asking. And I apologize guys, cuz there’s tons of comments here and I don’t want to stop and scroll it back as a digital agency, how are you able to win the two comma club
as a digital agency. So what I did was I set up a landing page for people to register. And for the, basically, they register for the seminars. So what we did then was tie that back to revenue. So the way clickfunnels works is it’s all based on you got to earn $1 million dollars in revenue through a single funnel. So I built a funnel, we blew through over $5 million in sales through a single funnel. And it was a very basic three page funnels. All it was was anything crazy register for the thing, probably get
some type of VIP upgrade or something that didn’t either buy or don’t buy at the event.
Exactly. That’s it.
And then even though the sale didn’t necessarily transpire, right on funnels because you’re able to say they enter here and they bought here. You can say it’s over a million dollar funnel, which obviously isn’t was right. You get the award.
Yep, exactly. So Click Funnels has a very long, basically when you when you fill out your form to get their funnel, the click funnel award, you won’t hear anything back like I didn’t know this, but it literally took six months. Like it was like
Cricket Cricket land, right? You’re like, I don’t know, did they get this? Am I gonna get the plaque?
Exactly. So in the meantime, I kept sending emails, and they were doing this massive verification, I even gave them you know, access to the client. Yeah, here’s all the data. Here’s the client information. I mean, I gave them screenshots. I had to give them access to actual the portal but all the payments were processed, they actually see those $5 million in revenue generated through that funnel. I was a lot of background information to go through and get that verification. So it’s not A very quick process at all
right? There’s some steps right there’s lots of documentation to turn in and they don’t want to just give the award out you have to have actually earned it you have to legitimately have done it through a funnel,
right? Yep. Good stuff. Really close to getting one through this tree service stuff down to so
that’d be exciting. Yeah. Very very very cool stuff. Okay, so Adams got a question here on related it’s about the video quality he likes the way your camera in your lighting setup setup is Yeah, camera do you run there
is a Canon SL three.
So it’s a DSLR it’s kind of like the next SLR
DSLR and the way it connected to my computer is a it’s a cam link 4k. Mm hmm. And the lens I’m using as a sigma. Now the lens is more expensive than the camera they can’t they came in was probably like, I would say like 400 bucks for the camera. The lens is about $700 just for the lens itself. That lens is It does all the magic the
lender sharpens it on where
I can now I can basically yeah it does auto zoom yeah the having that is key because you move around and this camera actually tracks my eyes I didn’t realize that but if I removed the side the side actually tracks my eyes and focuses on Facebook just
it looks it looks good it’s it’s a good camera with the with the cam link set up and then the lighting right is also what makes you you could have a great camera with terrible lighting. It still wouldn’t look good. You guys got a backlight behind him that kind of shades the back and Is that like a tilted tilted lights, tinted light with some type of blue or purple?
Yeah, what it is is the Hue lights. So I have several Hue lights in here. Allow me to basically change
whatever color I like. But also I’ll put a string deck at my desk. Now, here’s a here
with the stream deck guys but go ahead
So stream deck has changed my world. I have now you can, what it is is a panel of buttons. Basically you have your desk, your programmable buttons, you can have them do whatever you want. But I have a Facebook and Google
So every client I’m having to go to now to manage, I literally click their button and it takes me straight to their ad account. Is that right? I don’t have to dig through all their ad accounts and figure out you know, it’s like,
I don’t know some sort.
Yes, the shortcut button to delete an account.
That’s pretty cool. What’s it called? What is it? It’s called a stream deck. Rain deck.
Very, very interesting.
Stream deck. Okay, cool. Let’s Let’s pop back. Lots of cool questions here. People really appreciate what you’re sharing. The SEC so people know and before I don’t want to I don’t want to miss out. How can people learn more about you connect with you? What’s the best way to engage with you, Zack,
I’m on Facebook. Just look at me as look me up. Exactly. Set also have a website is aquin set calm. I have a group and I haven’t been very active in. But it’s online entrepreneur group. You can link to that on my Facebook page. You can hook me up that way. But
yeah, it’s that’s how you can reach me.
Excellent. So look at looking up lots of lots of cool stuff. Um, let’s see people a lot of you want to make sure there’s a replay Yes, this is being recorded, it’s going to be uploaded. Um, see, okay, sorry, guys, if you have full of questions to your post them, post them in. Um, let’s let’s keep pressing forward. Let’s talk a little bit about retention just for a couple minutes. So you’ve got 60 plus tree trim service companies and you’re doing a website to the SEO and generating the leads, like what proactive things you do to retain. And what is your fulfillment model look like? Are you doing this work yourself? Do you have a team? Can you talk a little bit about that?
Yes, so on retainment that’s the most important thing. As far as an agency goes, if not gonna be caught in the hamster wheel or trying to find new clients every single month. A lot, I see a lot of people that come to me, Hey, I need help my agency, the first thing I say is, well, how long are people staying on? Oh, they’re staying on two or three months, and they’re bailing off. I’m like, that’s no good. I mean, you got to figure that out. Is it results you’re not regenerating results, or they just don’t happy with the stuff you’re doing form? I mean, what was going on? There’s a disconnect there. That’s reason when they’re bouncing off. So first and foremost is communication. Make sure that I have a really straight communication process with my clients. We go over results we go over, what do you want to try this month? I mean, I’m constantly putting out new ideas in my in my facebook group. Again, that’s a good way to help retain your clients is I drop nuggets in there of, hey, here’s a new strategy I learned. If you guys want to try it out, be glad to work with you on price and get this thing rolled out. Just Just as a guinea pig test, basically, but they love getting new ideas and keep staying ahead of competition. Because our
tidbit there, right? Take your clients, you know, once you get 510 15 or more, and put them into a Facebook group like and cross mingling, and they’re sharing ideas, and it becomes almost like a mini mastermind at sorts. So go ahead and want to cut you off, but I want to make sure that that I think that’s a smart move.
Yeah, so as far as retention is, is communication, and then also having, you know, something tangible, I like to get into something tangible every month. So in that case, like call rail, for example, will spit out a report that can be sent out automatically. So any kind of anytime you can automate anything as far as reporting goes, I do, I just send it out. I don’t care what it shows the data, I just send it out. As long as it shows the number of calls that came in and all that I’m good to get. A lot of times that’s enough to keep these guys on board. All they just want to see it there. Getting basically a return. Yeah, that’s the biggest thing is are getting return on their investment. And if you can prove that the report, had that report sent to them on a monthly or weekly basis, and that way, you know, that keeps that communication flow going. Nice. So they don’t hear from you for six months, if they don’t hear from you from six months, and their credit card expires, and you got to call them up to get the new credit card. good look.
No doubt. So focus on results, focus on communication, leverage the marketing automation, and really what you have to do is validate the ROI, right? If they’re giving you 1600 dollars plus in 2000, and spend, they need to know that I get that money back or not. Right. And if they did, and you’re good with communication, for the most part, they’re gonna they’re gonna stick around. Right, exactly,
Powerful, do you like so as far as ROI CAN YOU ARE YOU piping that through high level software and using that to produce or using some type of Google sheet or something else to prove the ROI
meant the high level suite. So I put in and high level allows you to put in the value of an opportunity inside of high level. Hmm. So I’ll put a value in there based on the average Tree Removal job across the country i think i think i asked them usually what’s your average revenue for tree removal, they may say 1200 dollars less than number I’m going to use in high level so in that, you know, basically then multiplies their opportunities, number opportunities by their that 1200 dollars that gives the
titling value that you generated right and then are you are you helping them move the stuff to the close column so they can see you know, here’s how many jobs actually converted into revenue for you.
Yes, they love that by the way been able to manage those leads and keep keep track of Okay, we get this person estimate we haven’t heard back from this one. That helps and keeps track of those leads as much as possible. is a huge value add for these guys.
Hundred percent. So great retention tips. How about fulfillment? So you get a lot of things you do for these guys. What is the fulfillment team look like in your world?
I use I utilize contractors as much as possible. I have actually a really good friend of mine. He worked with me on the stem cell stuff. So he was really good with. He’s really good with clickfunnels he can build up a web website in no time and WordPress. Click Funnels good with automation software, so I leverage him as much as I possibly can. He’s really good and efficient at doing what he does. He’s also stateside so having someone in your timezone they can help you is huge. Versus I was doing everything overseas. Having a web designer, I had a programmer I had a Google Ads person, all that all that overseas and now tell you I was staying up Imagine trying to run your agency during the day, and then manage them at night. Okay, because they’re totally different time, you know, Philippines or wherever you’re at, I mean, you gotta sit there, you got to manage those people. So it came like, you know, small, small tasks works great. But if you’ve got, you know, someone that’s you got to sit there and train them on how to do things and all this, it takes more, it takes a lot of time. So I try to focus more on stateside as far as things that are critical things that are set. So for example, I tried several guys overseas to do to manage Google Ads actually lost three clients when I made that switch. The communication of them was Do not mess with these ads. These ads are performing don’t touch these ads, but what they did, they went in to mess with the ads. Okay. And so I’ve actually been through that process and I try to keep things stateside as much as I possibly can. I have I have just Now started getting some interviews going with people overseas to help build out some campaigns. But as far as optimizing the campaigns and doing the daily work, that’s going to be stateside that’s gonna be me and possibly some more people here in the States. But as far as setting up the initial campaign, the initial campaigns on Facebook or Google or YouTube, you can definitely outsource that overseas that’s not a problem to do that but it’s just the optimization that takes place that really is a skill set that you need to learn yourself that you can train someone you know just down the street from you be great if you can even do that. Just try to keep that knowledge as much as possible because overseas is totally different communication wise and all that it’s just my experience anyway
hundred percent and Josh really picked up Josh calm by the way picked up on you gotta learn it before you train it. Right exactly. Don’t Don’t think especially with with virtual people that you’re going to magically hand something off that you don’t understand. And the result somehow going to be great. As the owner of your business, you have to understand enough about it, and actually know how it works to train someone how to do it the way that it needs to be done. Otherwise, you’re you’re just tossing it out there and hope. And the results probably aren’t going to be what you need them to be. Exactly. You’d be lucky if they were let’s put it that way. You hire some random company, even the best of the best known brands and say, Hey, handle my pay per click, get my client results, you know, you’re looking at a one in 10 chance that that’s going to be what it’s supposed to be.
Yep. Good stuff. So So we talked about, we talked about niche. We talked about landing clients, we talked about delivering results. It sounds like you’ve got a virtual team, but you’d prefer to have it be a US based team.
Yeah. Likewise, like we’re under certain positions that international makes sense. But there’s also certain positions you want us based and, you know, like you said, if you can hire someone in your backyard that you can meet with face to face have like a real team that you can, you know, elbow to elbow. All the better in my opinion.
Yeah. Especially like with build outs of websites and things like that. What I’ve noticed with this guy is, you know, hey, we had a problem with the website or if there’s a, they won’t make changes or, you know, it’s just easy communication wise, you just call somebody in your timezone, hey, we’ve got a client need to get this done today. But you know, it’s knocked out versus overseas and you can’t then you wake up the next morning and it’s like, I didn’t really want it done that way and I gotta go back to the whole process again. So with websites and funnel builds and things like that I try to stay that stay set.
Okay, good stuff. So you know, coming to the close here, first of all, guys, be sure to look Zack once at Zack Winston calm if you want to connect with him on Facebook, obviously very successful, very willing to share what’s working for him. He’s an awesome guy. I’m looking back over over your Your career, if there were three lessons that kind of stood out to you that you could share? What would those three lessons be?
First one is fail fast. Hmm. You’re going to fail. Don’t let it trip you up. Just keep going. That’s the second lesson. I think a lot of people will just think trip up that first time or second time they give up. Keep going. I mean, you just got to keep pressing through. I can’t tell you many times, how many hours I’ve spent trying to learn a new skill. I’m self taught with Facebook. I’m self taught with Google itself itself. Everything I’ve learned is a skill set. I’ve actually dug my heels in and wasn’t. Another thing too is don’t be afraid to hire a mentor. hire someone that knows what they’re doing. They do this on a daily basis. There. There are a lot of people out there that that top the top, they don’t do the wall right. So they just They basically don’t run an agency themselves. They like cheating agencies though they don’t have a clue how to do it actually do it. They’re there, they’re there. They’re really good at taking your money and running and then you don’t learn anything you know. But it’s really good to find someone like Josh just he can help you, you know, basically get get he’s doing this on Databases just as I am. So someone like that that can go in help you find out where your bottlenecks are in your in your agency, he’ll be scaled the next level. That’s just huge. Because there’s a lot of bad actors out here in this world. I know that I’ve been through them and I’ve actually, I’m afraid to even look at my how much money I’ve spent on bad courses and bad mentors, just trying to learn basic simple skills. But once you find once you once you hear someone that says, hey, this person is really really good. I want to learn learn with them, contact that person. See how you get involve with that person. And then basically learn as much as you possibly can. And if they’re a genuine person, and they’re willing to help you out, that goes a long, long way. If at any point in time you’re in a, in a coaching program or something like that, and you’ve got a bad feeling back your head that they might be not knowing exactly what it is that you’re trying to learn. Maybe it gets on to know, to cut ties. I mean, if you want to find some leader that you will align with, I mean, that’s very important, especially with coaching. I tell people kind of meet up in economy all the time, hey, I’m a new person, I want to learn how to agency stuff, I say, okay, but we start digging in a little bit, and I kind of find out their core values don’t match with mine. I’m like, we’re not gonna be it’s not gonna work well. The way I view things the way I do things might be different in the way you do that. So try to find someone who aligns with you. That’s been my biggest thing is I’ve haven’t been before. To invest in myself invest in my skills to learn from the top people. I’ve got countless numbers of people who I can, I can say if I want to learn Facebook ads go to this person, Google Ads this person, I mean, I can name those those people individually because I know those people I know they’re intense, I know that they are genuinely looking at making themselves better and also helping their students be better. So that’s what you look for, and you’re looking for a coach.
Hundred percent. Good. I mean, amazing, amazing insights real fast. Don’t let your failures slow you down. And then don’t be afraid to invest in hire, support, right? Find someone that’s done, what you’re looking to do that is actually doing this stuff day to day and get the help that you need in order to move quicker in this kind of shortcut some of these challenges that you might face in your business. That’s right. Beautiful. Any questions in here real quick, guys. Lots of people say hey, great advice. Really pretty The time, be sure to go on Facebook if you’re watching this and tag Zack thank him for sharing. He shared some amazing insights on today’s session. As we wrap up, would there be one last nugget of wisdom that you might want to share with that agency owner that’s wherever they’re at, you know, they’re looking to get to the next level. One last nugget of wisdom. So
based on where you are, if you get to the next level,
you kind of have to like, again, go back and align yourself with someone that’s doing thing on a consistent basis. And I’m not saying don’t ever do this, don’t don’t copy what they’re doing exactly right. So find someone this next level, but don’t copy what they’re doing. put your own spin on it. Okay, and do it better. reverse engineer said there’s so many tools out there now. You can reverse engineer so many things right? Find out what they’re doing. Find out how they’re doing. Doing it and do it better. And then offer, offer a customer service at a top notch, you know, at a high, very high level, and you’re going to do very well. If you focus more on providing a top notch service, then you do your own revenue, you’re going to be okay. Think a lot of guys get caught up. I’ve got to make $10,000 this month or $20,000 a month. focus on providing the quality service, and everything else will take care of itself.
Great, great stuff. Well, Zach, it’s been it’s been a pleasure. I really appreciate you taking the time. I appreciate you sharing. Guys again, be sure to thank jack Be sure to connect with him on Facebook. Um, this has been awesome. Any any parting thoughts as we wrap up today before we close out today’s session?
I don’t think I have anything. I was great having me on Josh. I appreciate it. And it was an honor to be here. Thank you.
Thanks for sharing again. Thanks for Joining us guys. If you’d like to listen to more interviews like this, be sure to go to plump up cook, go to seven figure agency.com. We’ve got a podcast with other successful digital marketing agencies on what they’re doing to grow and scale their businesses. So thanks for joining us, and we’ll talk to you guys again soon.
Bye, guys. Thank you.
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