There’s No Money At All in Local Lead Gen

Yeah, I’m being sarcastic.

Today Tech Crunch released an article about Groupon‘s financial situation.  The current valuation of the company is $1.35 BILLION dollars.  They just raised $130 MILLION in VC funds.  That’s on top of the $1 MILLION + they are making per week in PROFIT. We all know there is no money in local lead gen 🙂  lol

In my opinion, Groupon is a pure example of how much potential there is in local lead generation.  People like the idea so much that they have been copying Groupon’s site idea and starting similar sites overseas.  Some even use the exact same design and everything. There is huge potential with local markets, because competition is minimal, and barrier to entry is low.  Even with Groupon’s seemingly “monopolistic” takeover and intimidating size, there is virtually limitless potential in the local space. Remember, Groupon is only advertising ONE company’s offer in a geographic area each day.  There are thousands of other companies to target.

If you are looking to get into this space and learn what you need to know to get started, consider ordering Local Lead Plan.  Its a set of PDF guides to teach you all the secrets of a successful local lead generator.  I’ve heard many good things about this program/tutorial, so consider it a good investment.

$15,000 in Free Traffic?

Step 1: Find a weakness in an advertising platform

Step 2: Keep this information to yourself

Step 3:  Take advantage of the weakness

Step 4: Go deposit profits at bank

Last year, there was a trick people were using on a popular social network advertising platform that involved manipulation of bid prices, and affiliates were able to pull in traffic for 1-2 cents a click where clicks were normally 30-60 cents.  I won’t mention the network specifically but in short, you created an ad, put your bid price per click very high, waited for your first click, then lowered your bid price to a couple cents.  The system read the high bid price and gave your ad priority impressions, and continued giving your ad priority impressions for a short time even after changing the bid price down to a couple pennies.  This resulted in tons of clicks for almost nothing.  Using a program like iMacros, you were able to automate this and let it run.

More recently, someone (not saying who) found a loophole in a certain advertising platform (if I said the name you would know what I’m talking about because you probably advertise there).  In short, this person was able to get about $15k in traffic in a couple day’s time (until the loophole was closed).  The trick involved setting up a new advertising account with no funding, submitting an ad for approval, getting the ad approved, and clicking a button to make the ad go live.  The ad would go live for about 15-20 seconds and would receive massive traffic (assuming you put the bid high enough).  After that time the system would recognize that there was no funding for the ad and would pause it.  Using iMacros the whole operation was automated until the trick stopped working.

I’m not saying you should build your business around finding loopholes, but just keep your eye open.  Whenever a new system/platform comes out, its bound to have weaknesses that you can monetize.

Make Bank with Facebook Groups

You can make money by creating free Facebook Groups.  This simple, free traffic source is often overlooked by many.  Recently, a friend of mine created a bunch of Facebook groups, and now (a few weeks later) the number of members for each group is in the thousands. With Facebook Groups, if I’m not mistaken you can send direct messages to up to 5000 members at a time.  If the number of members in the group exceeds 5000, you can’t direct message all members.  Good to keep in mind when your group starts to grow past 5000.  If you create a group that reaches membership in the hundreds of thousands, you can sell that group online for thousands of dollars. Once you have your group, treat it like an email base — don’t blast messages to them too often, otherwise they will leave your group.  Once a week should be okay.  Make your message blasts relevant, informative, and monetize-able. For each group you create, be sure to add a script so that new members can invite ALL of their friends to also join the group.

Tips for creating groups that will naturally attract large membership bases:

1. Create a group based on world events or pop culture.  If something huge happens in the news, create a group about it.  If a famous person dies, create a group in their honor.  If one of the Judges on American Idol annoys the heck out of you, create a group criticizing them in a unique/funny way.  Come up with your own ideas!

2. Create a group based on past events or eras.  “People Born in the 1980s,” “My Grandfather F aught in WWII,” Etc…

3. Create a group based on location.  “People of San Jose California” etc…  Once you get massive membership in local groups like this, you can do some Local Lead Gen.

4. Create a group based on interest.  For example, “I Love Golf.”  Imagine if you had a user base of even just 5000 in a group like this.  Blast out a direct message telling them about a new, sick golf game you  found (wgt.com), and tell em they can play it for free.  If even just 5% of your members sign up to play, at $1/lead that’s $250.

5. Create a group based on a Facebook App or Game.  Once you get massive membership, send out messages like “Get 50 points for X in Y game by Playing this new game!”  or “Get 50 Points in X game for inviting all of your friends to play Y game” — then put your affiliate link for the new (related) game in there. Then, create an ebook detailing the secrets of how to win Y game, and sell it for $50.  At least a few of the 5000 members will buy it 🙂

AdTech SF Parties 2010

UPDATED 4/19/10

SUNDAY

BluePhoenix Pre AdTech Mixer

Location: 466 Haight Street, San Francisco

10 PM – 2 AM

MONDAY

RockIt Media / Partner Weekly ROCK OUT Party

Location: 859 O’Farrell Street

9 PM – 1 AM

RSVP

AdTech Delegate Party

Location: Room 134 at the Moscone Center

5 PM – 6:30 PM

Ad:tech Opening Night Party (Unofficial)

Location: Roe Restaurant (1/2 block from Moscone North)

7:30 PM – 10:30 PM

TUESDAY

Engage Private Event

673 Geary St.

6-10 PM

RSVP: Send an email to rsvp@engageBDR.com with ‘RSVP engage:BDR’ in the subject field.

AffBuzz Meeting

Location: 868 Mission St

1-2:30 PM

RSVP

Moss Networks Mix n Mingle

Location: Manor West 750 Harrison Street

10 PM – ?

RSVP

ClickBooth Party

Location: 1015 Folsom Street

10PM – 3 AM

RSVP

Cocktails for a Cure Party (Avon)

Location: House of Shields

7:30 – 10:30

RSVP: None

Internet Oldtimers Party

Location: XYZ bar in the W Hotel

6:30-7:30

RSVP

BlumBerg Party

Location: Blumberg Offices 585 Howard Street

6-9 PM

RSVP

Tracking 202 Meetup

Location: B Restaurant – Moscone Center (Upstairs)

5PM – 7 PM

RSVP

AdTech Big Network Bash

Location: Room 134 at the Moscone Center

6- 7:30 PM

PPC.bz Party

Location: Can’t publish

9PM – 2 AM

RSVP: PPC.bz

AdRoll + Girls In Tech Party

138 Minna Street @ John Collins Lounge

6-11 PM

RSVP: Not Needed?  Just show up I think.

WEDNESDAY

Facebook AdTech After Party

511 Harrison Street

8PM-12AM

RSVP: For all registered attendees of F8.