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September 17, 2017

Get off your Butt

Filed under: Ken Edelstein — admin @ 12:11 am

Get off your Butt
Ever listen to Bolero? It’s basically the same musical note strings repeated over and over. There is minor variation but the major effect is that the music stays the same but gets louder and louder. Sound familiar? That’s the way the Forum here (and on similar sites) seems to be going. A constant repetition of the same old and tired gripes. Of course you have a right to feel slighted when screwed about no/low/late payment. But are you venting your frustration in the right direction? Perhaps you are your problem.

The single most cost effective form of marketing your services is business card distribution. Did you miss that? OK, for those that are not the brightest bulb in the chandelier – go back and reread the first sentence of this paragraph. Good, now we both know the secret to digging out of the signing swamp. You need a broad base of customers, hundreds of them. Hanging on with a few clients = financial doom. Yes, I said hundreds. Why? Because most of the time they do not need your notary services. But, with several hundred knowing about you, some will call. To them you are “the one” not one of many to underpay.

So, exactly what is business card distribution? It involves getting off your tail feathers and actually SELLING YOURSELF. Get a local map, draw a circle with the radius of the circle ten miles from your home location. That covers a lot of territory. Probably includes many, many business locations. You need to visit them individually and present a few (half a dozen works for me) business cards. They are cheap. I order 5000 at a time from VistaPrint, specifying their slowest service – and the cost is pennies per card. Make the card a work of art. Don’t forget to put some “keeper” information on the back. No, not a calendar; something forever useful.

Want to give your card even more impact? Write a cover letter that describes your services and make sure to include useful information. You might cover the requirements for someone to be notarized, your experience, your availability; and a bit about the person that you are. Perhaps you will choose to put a bit more into your face to face contact – a small gift. A pen, a letter opener, a keychain – something. See http://blog.123notary.com/?p=19345 for one way to build a repeat relationship – surely you can think of more and better ideas. But you have to DO them.

I’m a payment first kind of guy. I used to have “dun the turds day – the last Monday of the month” – that’s history now. Virtually all of my work is prepaid via PayPal, especially with signing services or structured settlements. They don’t like to pay. I have a BBB A+ rating and will extend credit to strangers who have the same. But back to business card distribution.

You want to get your card into the hands of people whose time is more valuable than yours. Or, to put it another way: their time is more valuable than your fee. A doctor is not going to make a trip to the bank to have a “qualify for adoption” statement notarized. Paying your truly trivial fee allows the doctor to meet a patient and earn much more than your fee. A manager at a big store does not want to go to a notary; they can call you (IF THEY KNOW YOU EXIST) to come to them and simply make it a business expense (it’s not coming out of their own pocket).
It’s work. Make a route – visit hundreds of locations with your 6 cards, cover letter and perhaps a small gift. General Notary Work is easier and payment is immediate. You just have to get off your Butt, Please. I’m tired of all the griping about signings. Also, with a good revenue stream from your General Notary Work you can tell SSS (Sleazy Signing Service) to prepay or go away. Be prepared for a surprise. SSS will often prepay if you stand your ground. Many have called me back a half hour later to submit to MY terms.

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