Where do I start when marketing my business?

Editor’s Note: This is a guest post written by digital media expert Leo Gamayunov, who we invited this past summer to be a member of the advisory board for McGill’s third annual X-1 Accelerator Program. Leo is a JMSB Graduate, co-founder of Montreal digital marketing and SEO agency TTBA Group, and founder of Montreal’s #1 e-commerce experiential gift boutique, wishbox.gift.

Where do I start when marketing my business?

Starting a business is never an easy task. Sooner or later, all business owners ask themselves the same question: How do I make sales?

Of course, the first word that comes to mind is (drumroll)… Marketing. Unfortunately, the word marketing can be somewhat vague.

Today, business owners are faced with millions of different instruments and avenues for marketing. Between social media, search engine optimization, Google Adwords, retargeting, and email marketing, the prospect can become daunting. It can be hard to understand where each piece of the puzzle fits, and more importantly, when to place each piece.

With marketing, it’s easy to get lost in the noise.

At TTBA Group, we believe the key to maximizing your ROI is structuring your marketing budget. Here’s how we break down the process for our clients:

  1. Aim
  2. Reach
  3. Acquire
  4. Warm
  5. Sell

The image shows a funnel where the top part is Aim, followed by Reach, Acquire, Warm Up, and Sell. Finally, what comes out of the funnel at the bottom is money.Example:

Let’s explore this model.

Say you have a dentistry practice and you want to increase your sales. To boost traffic, you spend $1000 on Google AdWords for $10 per click. Your campaign directs one hundred potential customers to your website, and one converts into a purchase of services.

While this is a “successful” campaign, your profit margin on the job is only $700. What do you do now? Our funnel model can guide you to triple your profit margins:


AIM:  Be smart when choosing your audience.

Understand your potential customer. What are their key deciding factors when making a purchase? What’s the first thing they do when they start searching for your product or service?

Design your campaign based on the buyer persona. Don’t attempt to successfully hit everyone with the same message or approach.


REACH: Use the appropriate channels to reach specific demographics.

For targeted marketing, we use Google AdWords, because most potential patients will search for a dentist using Google.

Understand what your patients are looking for, and design appealing ads that answer their questions in order to get the best click-through rate.

Select keywords that have cheaper costs-per-click (CPC).

Confirm that your ad relevance score is 7+ to save on the CPC.

Make sure your clicks are at $8.00 by targeting your key groups only on weekends, for example. In this case, you would have 125 clicks at $8.00.


ACQUIRE: Obtain your leads by various methods (phone number, email address, or re-targeting cookie, to name a few)

Instead of sending 125 potential patients to your website, send them to an appealing landing page that promotes why they should choose your practice. Try including coupons for teeth whitening (or a complementary inexpensive service).

Collect email addresses and phone numbers in return for coupons and discounts.

Of the 125 potential patients that landed on your page, you’re likely to receive thirty leads for individuals seeking teeth whitening services.


WARM: Warm your lead. Don’t sell. Instead, educate.

Grow your re-targeting audience by installing Facebook pixel on your landing page.

Use behavior-based retargeting when running your ad campaigns on Facebook, Google, or any other ad services.

When using Facebook, segment the visitors that reached your landing page. Highlight your expertise by sharing “knowledge” videos or blog posts. Give them the opportunity to understand your value over the competition.

Your goal is to be memorable enough that they contact you when they need a dentist.

Don’t let your leads go cold. Follow up with them in three days and invite them for a discounted service or a free consultation.


SELL: Convert your leads to sales.

Similar to your previous metrics, you convert one potential client into a paid service.

From your thirty leads, three individuals have agreed to receive discounted services, and three have scheduled appointments for a free consultation.

Of the three consultations, one is converted to a complementary cleaning through in-person upselling. Remember, the complementary services reflect the value of your practice. (Read more about why you need to always put your product first.)


The results:

Before you optimized your marketing budget, you converted one sale for a $700 profit.

After using the funnel method, you have tripled your revenue from the same 100 clicks. One sale ($700), three discounted complementary sales ($900 or $300 x 3), and one full complementary sale ($500) has increased your profit margin by 300%.

This example shows how much you can accomplish with your $1000 marketing investment simply by utilizing every channel of the funnel effectively.

Map your actions accordingly and follow these steps to jumpstart your marketing campaign:

  1. Build your funnel by considering the bigger picture for your business.
  2. Pick your battle. Analyze and prioritize your marketing goals. (Do you want to obtain leads, focus on awareness, or launch a warming campaign?)
  3. Convert your goals into measurable campaigns with an action plan. (Integrate a discounted “tripwire” offer on your landing page, as an example.)
  4. Develop a system to track the success of your campaigns. (A simple yes/no is already useful).

I hope you’ve found this article helpful. I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments. You can always contact me directly at [email protected].

Good luck!

Dobson Chronicles

Dobson Chronicles

The Dobson Chronicles is the official blog of the McGill Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurship.