GWA Marketing Solutions is a British company in the digital marketing sector. They help companies increase ROI using the internet. More precisely, they offer online business solutions, with focus on SEO and Google ad-words.
The owner of GWA Marketing Solutions is Geoff Alexander, a very talented and knowledgeable online marketer. He set up his company in 2005 and was delivering immense value to his clients; however not that much to himself. Formerly employed by a first tier investment bank in the City of London, he gave up a highly paid job to pursue his dream of running his own company.
Geoff increasingly accumulated SEO and especially Google ad-words knowledge and had become an expert in the field. However, he was far from reaping the benefits of his fame. Thus, we offered to help. We performed a diagnosis on his company, starting with Geoff himself, as an individual. He is charismatic, an excellent presenter, and very knowledgeable in his field. However, his true nature is not that of an entrepreneur. He is a skilled producer, absolutely passionate about helping his clients, and delivering the best value possible. As our report states, as a non-entrepreneur by nature, he needs to partner with an entrepreneur if he wants to be successful in business. This was our recommendation to Geoff. Soon after, he entered a coaching / mentoring program, offered by an experienced entrepreneur. He thus “brought” into his company the missing entrepreneurial trait.
On the business side, we concluded that his business model was not the best possible and that his pricing strategy especially needed significant improvements. In addition to suggesting him to offer training in SEO, we suggested increasing his prices! As a consequence of our advice, he now has an alternative source of income from presenting at events and coaching and, more importantly, he generates more money with the same effort, from the same or similar clients.
We showed him that what he was charging his clients was less than his own costs. We asked him to analyse his costs and he realised that his costs were higher than the amounts received from his clients. The main reason he thought his costs to be lower was that he was not valuing his own inputs into the company’s projects. He was only considering the “cash costs” paid to others for their work, failing to realise that by his supervision and involvement in the company’s projects he was, in fact, offering the highest value possible. And that if he was not paying himself a salary it did not mean that he should not be considered as a cost to the company. After subsequently increasing his prices, not only did he retain his best clients and attract better quality clients, but he terminated the relationship with the ones that were not suited to his business.
Our list of suggested improvements was much longer. Presented below is another aspect, that of subcontracting. As a young company, with limited resources, Geoff was focusing on doing the work himself. We helped him realise that he could not sustain a company just by delivering by himself, and that he needed assistance. Since, at the very beginning, he was not generating sufficient income to be able to employ a full-time professional in London, we suggested that he use the services of equally skilled people, but from countries where salaries are much lower. Thus, he worked with people from Romania and Bulgaria, initially, and then he went even farther, to the Philippines.
Another area of improvement was his website. He had been so focused on delivering value to his clients that he did not deal with his own website, which was old and dated. We insisted that the website is equally as important as his presentations; it is his business card. Especially for him, in online business solutions, it is crucial to have a professional website. He is currently working on this, and will soon show his new image to the public. He has undertaken a complete rebranding exercise.