Ever wondered what it takes to land a $10,000 web design project?
You might think it would take a huge agency to land that. Or high-converting ads. Maybe even a digital marketing package that includes ads, SEO, etc.
Well, in this case study style episode of the podcast, you’ll learn how one of my amazing students actually used “coopetition” with another agency while being a part of a local think tank group to land this client!
Instead of simply outlining my top tips based on our chat, I’m letting you in on the entire session so you can hear exactly how he did it!
Then we’ll close the episode out with my top 7 takeaways from what Nick learned and did right in this situation.
I hope you enjoy this one and more importantly, implement some takeaways to your business so you’re ready for your first or next 10k project!
P.S. Look for Nick to come on the podcast for a full episode later this Summer!
In this episode:
00:00 – Introduction
03:37 – How networking paid off
06:41 – Being self-aware
07:29 – Utilizing a large location
09:01 – When co-opetition isn’t
11:23 – Setting maintenance package
13:57 – Value to momentum
17:17 – Hockey talk
18:03 – Baby talk
19:27 – Seven takeaways
25:38 – Meet the community
Featured links mentioned:
Episode #187 Full Transcription
Hello, friends, welcome into the podcast, this is episode 187. Now in this one, we’re going to do something a little bit different. This is coming out in what would normally be a solo episode spot every other Thursday. As of right now I’m doing solo episodes. And I wanted to do one about a story in a kind of a case study that one of my students recently went through when he landed his first $10,000 project. But what was extra interesting about this is my student in this case, Nick Monaghan, landed it in a very different way. In fact, it was coopetition, he basically worked with one of his competitors. And that’s how he got this project.
Now, instead of just summarizing what we talked about. And instead of just kind of coming up with some points, based off this, I figured I’d actually let you in on the conversation we had. So Nick is a part of my coaching community, my Web Design Club, and we’ve been talking a lot about getting clients recently, I just recently had another one of my students, Kayla Walters, and she shared in the last episode about how she got a lot of her clients and how she how she built her client base through social media, and DM’s and stuff. And so we talked about that in the web design club. And Nick shared with me this experience.
And if you don’t know about this, if you don’t know too much about my web design club, first of all, it is open to you, if you would like me to coach you. And you want to meet some of these awesome people and be in this community. But every week, I do weekly, Q and A’s and a lot of those I’ll bring up members. And we’ll just have a 10 to 15 minute chat. And we can’t call it kind of a hot seat. Sometimes it’s more question based, sometimes it’s more of talking about an experience. And that’s exactly what we’re doing in this one.
So I’m going to let you hear this entire conversation. We talked for about 15 minutes or so. But there was a lot of really interesting points that we dove into that I think are going to be really beneficial to you. Now, we had not planned to make this a podcast but I checked with Nick and he said it was totally cool to use it. I actually am going to have Nick on the podcast this summer and 2022 as a full other episode. But for now, I want you to enjoy this conversation we had about how Nick and his agency landed their first $10,000 client and then I’m gonna follow up once this is over with my top seven points that I got from this conversation. But for now, here’s Nick and I think you’ll find this really interesting. So let’s go.
Nick, oh, you got your Blue Yeti microphone now and everything.
Hey, and I got a little deal.
Wow. You are getting legit, man.
Moving up like the Jeffersons maybe. Wow.
I mean, last year you were just you know, just talking on your phone and look at this. Now you got the mic. You got the boom stand.
Oh, man. Dude, I have to tell you, like so much comes from learning from you, Josh. So yeah, absolutely. I appreciate all your help.
Oh, dude, it’s been so cool. Seeing you your journey progressed, man. And you’ve never stopped smiling, which I encourage courage and keep it going.
Thanks, brother. Appreciate it. Appreciate it.
So 10,000 dude. Yeah, how? Where? Why? Tell us tell us about it.
Yeah, absolutely. So to get to kind of give you a story. It’s so crazy hearing, just like what we were just listening to because I literally went through it. We scaled and guys, we scaled very improperly. I was just letting it rip. I didn’t have a budget or anything like that. So the last two or three months, I’d say off q1 Really, we really focused inward and lost a lot of money, because I wasn’t prospecting but it is so important to set that foundation.
So the reason why I said that, because we’re in quite the drought. It was kind of scary. And I was telling my wife like we are, we’re getting worked right now. But I knew that the foundation we were setting was super important. So I’ve got the team in place, and everyone’s in really good shape.
So I said all that again to say I was sitting there. I’m a part of a local think tank where we get together and just talk through different businesses, things like that. And again, a local think tank does the same thing I do. And so he was just listening, listening, listening. And then on Friday, he literally called me he’s like, Hey, our agency can’t handle the the bandwidth of this project. The budget is a little lower for our scope. We know that you can and I’ve listened to you and seen you speak and in our group and everything like that, and we believe that you could crush it. So literally, I went from being so crazy nervous, like distressing. Oh, like back to the wall to like, having a $10,000 project $1,000 project is laid in my hands.
There it is. Welcome to web design, baby, you’re freaking out and there’s no clients and then you’re so slammed, you don’t know what to do the next day. Very common. But there’s a couple of really important points there. Nick, you said, you’ve been focusing inwardly? This q1 primarily. And so if you haven’t been doing much sales, that’s exactly what happens. Like you did set the foundation, but it’s a good like, lesson learned that once you stop marketing and getting out there, and just, you know, doing those things, and meeting in person, whatever you’re doing, it’s going to dry up until you get steady referrals, which I mean, you’re only what a year and a half.
Yeah, 2020 was when we started.
That’s right, December 2020. So Wow, that’s crazy, man. So yeah, it’s a good like, it’s a good rule of thumb. And just to remember, like, if you take your foot off the gas with marketing, just prepare now, there are seasons for that, like, especially if somebody’s to a place where you’ve got some funds built up and you could go a few months without getting a ton of clients then that is like, that’s the time to invest in your systems and your team. And, and now what’s really exciting here, Nick is like the next few months, I think that’s what’s going to be wild for especially because we’re in like, springtime now, which is always a really busy season before vacations and holidays start in the summer. So I think April, May and probably into June will be you know, crazy for ya. That’s awesome.
Yeah, we’re going so that’s the other thing is Josh, you probably know me, I could talk the ears off a statue. So the big thing is I networking is my jam. That’s what I do so incredibly well. And so really, I moved into a position of just networking like crazy and saying, like I’ve got my team to do a lot of the technical work stuff like that. So you mentioned.
That and that this is the beauty of being like self aware. And you know, a lot of web designers networking is like the last thing they want to do. But you Nick, you want to do it. So by golly, I would encourage you like jump in that sales role man, like, jump in that sales role headfirst and you’ll probably with that mentality and you’re in a great location to be in isn’t Are you in Denver,
So okay, how far is that from dinner?
About an hour north? We’re actually closer to Cheyenne, Wyoming than Denver.
Oh, okay. Never, never heard of that. driven through Wyoming in the in the bad days, but never. I think we did drive right through it. Yeah. Okay. So either way, though. You’re in like a good area. Right. And are you getting clients from Denver? And are you ever doing every doing anything in there?
Yeah, yeah, we definitely are. We’re getting a good amount from Denver. A lot of it’s called the Front Range. So Colorado Springs, Denver and Fort Collins. So running up and down the front range there.
Okay, the Front Range web designer, although we don’t want we don’t want to rebrand you’ve already got Monahan Media Group, which is awesome. So yeah, that’s what I’d say, man, you know, just really embrace that in person networking role. And it may change and may evolve over time. In a couple of years. You might be like, I’m feeling a little done with this. I want to like, do it focus on some different things, or you got your microphone, you’ll start your podcast soon. So I who knows what Nick’s gonna do.
But anyway, I’ve taken this off the back to this project. This is a great example of you never know, like, Who knew that just joining a think tank and talking about business when people would lead to a $10,000 it beats the hell out of like, I’m gonna set up a marketing Facebook ads plan and do Google ads and invest $5,000 And hopefully I get one lead for 10,000. It’s like, you just share what you knew. You’re new to the game, but I don’t know if this guy knew that. And then boom, here you go. $10,000 project right in your lap, which is and it wasn’t like a hard sell or anything. Right? You just docked?
Yeah, literally, I just he was like, hey, just get on the phone with there. And it literally the deals been done. You just got to talk to her. And that was it. I just talked to her kind of picked out our pain points, how we can solve those solutions. And then she’s like, Yeah, that sounds incredible. And away we went, which is something too that like really struck me is like, you know, we we live in an area where like, hey, that’s our competition. That’s our competition. That’s our competition. Well, they’re like one of the big cats in town. And there weren’t competition because they’re so full capacity. You just never know how those you know. Does that make sense? Like you’re not Yeah, you have the apcoa?
Co-opetition, baby. That is another Nick, I need to get you on the podcast. Dude. We need to explore this because I like everyone can benefit from what you’ve done and what you learn, especially that mindset of like, I don’t need to compete with this massive agency. They’re at a whole different level. So like, if you to partner up with them and just are cool with them and share what you know, and maybe even give them clients when they’re not good fit. Guess who’s going to filter these measly little $10,000 projects down to you, you’re gonna get them. So yeah, that’s an that’s another thing to remember to, like most of us here here a $10,000 project or like dirt. Okay, but to a lot of these agencies that’s like, ooh, we start at 25. So that’s not going to be a good fit. So yeah, that’s it’s a great way to go about it. Now, what’s included? Is this like digital marketing? Is this for website? Bill? what’s all included in this one? Yeah, absolutely.
Well, that’s crazy. It’s just the build. So it is built out of the entire site. So it’s really cool operation, they help, you know, help kids in Africa, you know, get the supplies, food and all that, that they need. So in a way, it’s built out like an econ. So like people donate, they kind of purchase the goods that they can help the children out. And so it’s a full, almost Ecomm build out that is constantly evolving. And the crazy thing is we just talked maintenance, were pretty solid on a maintenance package moving forward. Without even having started the whole the whole project, which is really exciting.
What would that maintenance plan look like? You know, the budget of that? Because it was a $10,000 project, or likely go for like an elite type of package?
Yeah, yeah. So we I did the same kind of obviously, I’m a student of yours. So I have the same maintenance packages you where it’s like, accepted the number seven, I finished an odd numbers, which is Ah, so it’s 47. There are 57 they won’t use that one. Because like you said, it’s just basic maintenance hosting. And then there’s a organise 147 And then a 247. And then they’ll probably do the 247. One because they’ll need at it’s down the road. So
Gotcha. Okay. Yeah, you know, it really doesn’t matter nines or sevens. I never recommend anything off of zeros just because like you might as well go just $1 under at a nine and said like 1500 like 1499. And then I sometimes fives will work I found but yeah, for whatever reason, I’ve learned that I like to personally do I end and sevens if it’s a one time, course or product, but I like and I did that with web design. It was like 2497 but maintenance plan was always 59, 89, 99. And eventually we’re doing you know, under 99 to 99.
So I like nines for subscription services and sevens for one offs. Why? I don’t know but it’s working. I’m not gonna…
Yeah, yeah. Christian said I like the O’s though. Don’t make me think. Whatever Christian I know you love thinking, man. If anyone’s gonna think, you know, in depth about something on pricing, I will be Christian. So yeah, well, Nick, dude, this was awesome, man. Yeah, I 100% Maybe this summer? Depending on where you’re at with everything we could we could get you on the podcast and dive into this as kind of a case study style episode to see what you’ve implemented. Because yeah, you’re you’re doing everything right, man.
And also you focused on your strengths, which is like the most important thing you could do like you were pretty quick to hire and build your team and Yeah, little costly your so costly months, but I think I mean, it’s already even out in some I know you mentioned to me like, you know, sometimes you have really good months. Sometimes you’re spending more, but you’re laying the foundation. And now it’s like, it’s it’s profit time now. Maybe this year is going to be huge for you. I think,
Man, I appreciate it. Yeah, figure out your strengths. And then Josh, you said it in a podcast one time and it literally I don’t think it was probably one of those one off things you said, but you just got to create momentum. And that literally has stuck with me entirely. He’s like, dude, all I need to do is create momentum. And away we went. But yes. So if you want to.
Yeah let’s do it, let’s do it. Yeah, I’m so glad you brought that up. Momentum is the and I’m saying this to everybody momentum is the most important thing. Like I experienced that this year. My numbers weren’t terrible, but q1 this like January and February, like, ah, not great, like not bad. But just I was really hoping for more and a lot of cases but what I learned was through that little season is I just did not stop and now I’m reaping the benefits because a lot of people are like like yourself are coming through and or even like Elena a little bit ago said you know, listen to your podcast, I was doing my thing. Then I came back to.
Like I’m getting a lot of that were getting a free webinar or training out or doing a live on on YouTube or something like that, or just, you know, getting out there and marketing. You may not see the reward right away, but people are often circling back because they remember, especially if it’s good and if it’s honest. So I’m so glad you mentioned that momentum is just the most like you really have two options when you’re in a dry spell like like you were there. Again, it’s probably I don’t know if it caught you by surprise but to me It’s pretty obvious you just you weren’t marketing that much, you weren’t out there as much. So it’s that’s going to happen because you’re still early in the game.
Now, in two years, you could probably go on vacation for three months and be fine, because I feel like your business is going to be just insane. But you got to keep momentum going. So you’re one of those are gonna say, oh, yeah, there’s really two things you can do. You can sit in the corner and cry and be like, Oh, God, what have I done? Or you could just keep going? And I can’t encourage everyone enough. Just keep going. Just keep on. Keep that momentum going. That’s what it’s all about.
Yeah, absolutely. I agree.
I agree. Hey, did you. So I don’t know if anyone saw this. But I had an amazing opportunity. Let me share real quick to interview Amy Porterfield on the podcast, which is coming out next week. And for those who don’t know, she is like a legend in the entrepreneurial world. Where was that? Send discussions? Let’s see here. Yep. So whoever would like access that chat. Now, I did post it in here. If you guys want to listen to it. It reminds me so much of what you just went through Nick.
So I’m going to post it in the chat. And of course, everybody can go to discussions and find this. I cannot recommend listening to this chat enough. Now. It’ll be on the podcast next week. But if you want to listen to it early, you can. But there were so many things that Amy said I mean, she’s doing multi seven figures. So like multi million dollar online course coaching business. But I share that to say she said so many of the same things about like, just keeping momentum going and just knowing your why. And just, you know, sticking with it, because we all go through it. And she actually hated most of last year in her business, which is really interesting to find out.
But she talked about how she got past that. So anyway, you know, at our level, we’re so it’s very different. It’s not that different than people who are like doing seven figures. It’s just different problems and different challenges. So
Yeah. April says I cannot wait to hear that episode. April. Wait, no more. Go check it out right after this q&a, of course. So yeah, hope you guys enjoy that. So yeah, Nick. Really wasn’t any advice or anything. But dude, thanks for coming on, man. I really appreciate you sharing that.
Yes. Thanks for having me. Appreciate that.
By the way, before we end this q&a Before I let you go, are you taking pictures of the A’s to the playoffs? Yes. Oh, man. It’s are you really? Yeah, yep. I’ll be. Yeah, so for those who don’t know, Nick is also an NHL photographer for the Colorado Avalanche. So I don’t I would like them to win the cup, Nick. I really would. I think I just have a feeling they’re gonna go to the finals, but I’d like them one of the cup. That’s what I’m saying. So
There’s a lot of these thought on the East Tampa is unreal for the whole battle Florida is unreal. So yeah, I hope so. Because with the baby coming, it’ll be a little bit more difficult. So I’m hoping this year as the cup run. Yeah.
When’s your little one coming.
June 8, June 8
June 8, okay. Wow. Okay. Yeah. So yeah, get busy man. Make that next couple of months and then June will be a light month and then well, you just wait. The baby syndrome is real as far as like the whatever they call it. The kid. Kid syndrome doesn’t sound good, but you will make so much more money after having that little one. Yeah, it’s gonna be it’s gonna be unreal. You’ll just be smarter. You’ll just think smarter. It’s amazing how that works. You’re like, I’m not going to waste time doing something that’s not going to fill this baby’s belly with more an indie guy by freaking diapers and stuff like that. So
That’s been the all of us baby showers going into Minnesota with my wife’s family and we’re back here and we’re just like, diapers that we have a diaper fun.
Yes. Diapers. Yeah, no one want you can the grandmas can buy little clothes and stuff. You want diapers? No. That’s where the money’s at. What an industry. All right, guys. Well, hey, Nick. Thanks for letting us know, man. This is awesome.
Yes, absolutely. So thankful for you.
All right, keep it up in.
So awesome, right? Was Nick not awesome. Like, I just felt like this conversation was so good and too valuable not to share publicly. So I hope you enjoyed hearing from Nick and what he’s learning. He’s someone who’s early in the journey, but he’s doing things you know, and all the right ways in a lot of cases. And, again, we’re gonna have him on the podcast later this summer. But for now, I just wanted you to get a feel for that.
What I do want to do right now to close this out, though, is to give you my top seven tips and takeaways from what we just talked about. Let’s dive into these real quick. First of all, Nick talked about being in a drought because he was not prospecting. This is so common, especially if you’re really busy and you’re not getting out and doing any networking or not doing any calls or not marketing online. That is going to happen between those of you who might have a open and closed style business. The danger of that is if you’re closed for business for a few months, if you’re not getting out there and being top of mind on social media and stuff, you are going to go through a drought.
So be careful if you do that. And there are seasons where focusing on your systems and processes like Nick has done with his agency where that is needed. But again, you want to be careful not to stop prospecting or stop selling, especially in the early days until you get that lovely referral train going. So that’s number one.
Number two, Nick is in a think tank group. Now, there’s all different sorts of networking groups and meetups and stuff like that I just talked about this in a recent workshop I did on getting clients. But I definitely recommend you look into what it might be called Think Tank, it might be something else, but look into groups in your area. With other business owners, oftentimes, they might be in your same industry.
And this leads us to point number three coopetition. A lot of people, especially in web design, look at their competition, and they’re immediately like enemies, but I can’t encourage you enough to not treat your competition like enemies, work with them. coopetition work with your cooperate with your competition.
That is this is a prime example of how to do this, right. And Nick landed a $10,000 project because of it. So it’s just a this is an actual real world case study. This is not theory, this is not like what I hope might go right, this is what is actually working right now in web design. So do not look at your competitors. And think how can I beat them? How can I jump above them on SEO work with them. Most cases, a lot of competitors are going to have different types of services. Or in some cases, you might have the same services, but they’re in a different kind of League, and you might be perfect for them. Maybe they can filter you all the $1,500 or $2,500 $3,500 type clients. So do not shy away from coopetition. I love coopetition.
Now number four, you heard Nick talk about his role in the company. Now Nick is a people person, I’m going to post a picture of this screenshot of our talk, you’ll see that he does not stop smiling, which is why I like to joke about that. But he is a born salesperson and a born client like face to face type of person. So that’s the role he’s embracing as the CEO, the business. And I want to encourage you to do the same thing. Figure out what strengths you have and what role you are best at. And then once you get to a point where you can start hiring out and getting people to support you focus on that you will love life so much more.
Number five, you heard about getting clients in like regional now you can go to networking groups, and you can join Chambers of Commerce is and other different types of meetups and stuff locally, you can also pinpoint and target things via SEO locally, which is really, really beneficial. And it’s quite easy because people often want to work with somebody in their region like me living in Columbus, Ohio. If I want to find a web designer, I’m going to look for web design in Columbus, Ohio first to find out you know who’s in my area, who knows the market the business. So don’t shy away from regional SEO and in person strategies as well if you’re in a location that suits that.
Now number six one thing that Nick talked about in this is showing solutions after finding pain points, especially when he had that call with that client. So when this is just a sales tip, basically, I don’t think Nick realized that he was showcasing some awesome sales tips here. But when you are talking with a lead, especially if it’s if it’s a warm lead, you do not need to sell, you don’t need to sell anything, all you need to do is give some inspiration and share some ideas and ideally solutions that way the client knows the results after working with you. So listen for their pain points, do more listening at first when it comes to sales calls, and then follow up with ideas, solutions and results. That is how you land clients that is 100% how you land $10,000 Plus clients.
And then finally point number seven that I took away from this Conville momentum. We talked about this. I forget if it was later on in the Convo early, but we talked about when you’re in a dry period or a slow period in your business clients are running low, maybe you’re just you’re not the numbers aren’t great. You’ve got to keep momentum going. I want to end this conversation off by stressing that. I learned this too in the beginning of 2022. I talked about this recently with Amy Porterfield who was on the podcast I shared with her that I had a couple of not so great months to start this year. I ended last year and 2021 with huge months and started the year with not so great months.
But I did not stop I kept on producing content. I kept on doing webinars and workshops and kept on going and now the ripple effect has started and I’m I’m had I had I just came off of a couple huge months. And that’s how it works. That is just the way it works. But you when you’re in that slow period, you have to keep momentum going. Just like I told Nick, you can basically sit in the corner and cry or you can keep going keep going keep moving forward.
The way I like to feel the way I like to say it is like if you feel like you’re getting to a place where like I might need to shut these doors down. You need to tell yourself, I can’t shut these doors down, I have a training next week, I have a, you know, a sales call next week, put yourself in a position where you cannot stop your business. There’s the moral of the story.
And again, I hope these lessons and takeaways that I took from this conversation when they help you, and a different style episode, but I just wanted to share this, I thought it was so good. Hats off to Nick for just being a superstar. And in your journey, man, you’re doing awesome. And I think that Nick is a great example for everyone here listening who you know, maybe especially if you’re new to the game, or you’re interested in getting bigger projects, but not sure how that goes. I hope he took a lot of inspiration from this.
Now that goes without saying, if you want to meet Nick, and you want to be a part of my web design community, and you want to jump on these weekly calls that I do, and potentially do a hot seat with me like Nick did, it’s open to you, you can join my web design club, you can go to Josh hall.co/coaching, there’ll be an offer for you there you can meet Nick, you can meet Kayla, who was recently on the podcast in an amazing community of web designers all around the world. And I’ll coach you personally. And we’re gonna talk about this stuff every day if you want to. So join that if you’re ready to take to the next level. And for now, I hope you enjoyed this episode. Make sure to subscribe to the podcast leave a review if you would, and I’ll see you on the next one.
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