How Lolly Co Is Building a Growth Engine
Daniel is the founder and managing director of Lolly Co, a consulting firm that helps companies reduce and replace mundane tasks through software and automation.
“I believe that the future of work is human and machine working in unison to free employees from the mundane and repetitive,” Daniel writes on his website.
How does Lolly attract new prospects for Lolly Co’s services?
As you’ll see, he’s doing it by building a simple, straightforward funnel — paired with an extremely attractive entry point.
The $50,000 Workshop
Lolly Co’s entry point is a process-design workshop with an extremely compelling value proposition.
The promise? Lolly will find $50,000 in savings through automation and software to replace inefficient processes and tasks in a business.
The cost? $5,000.
“That’s our entry point when working with a new company,” Daniel said.
Traditionally, Lolly Co’s new clients have come mostly through referrals.
But Daniel is working on changing that.
Building a Growth Engine
“Referrals are great,” Daniel told us. “They tell me that we’ve built our internal processes to a place where we’re delivering value and doing things right.”
“But now I need to build the growth engine,” he added. “I want to pour fuel on the fire, to make a lot more people aware of what we do and of the workshops we offer.”
To accomplish that, Daniel has chosen marketing strategies focused on long-term growth — not short-term strategies like ads or influencer marketing.
“I don’t want to pay the extortion fees to run ads like some people seem happy to do,” Daniel told us. “I like to build things that grow and grow and grow over time.”
Three of the keys to Daniel’s plan:
- He wrote a book!
- SEO (including link building)
- The $50,000 workshop
Here’s how the three piece work together:
1. He Wrote the Book on Automation
During the pandemic, Daniel spent time almost every day working on a book about automation.
“The book is the first step in what we’re doing related to content,” Daniel said. “The book is designed to get people interested in automation in their business, then pull them into our workshops.”
Any business owner or executive interested enough to read a full-length book on business automation will be a fantastic prospect for Lolly Co.
They’ll be deeply educated about process improvement, automation, and how Lolly Co’s process helps companies find thousands of dollars in savings.
“But you can’t just write a book and hope people discover it,” Daniel said. “You have to have some other way for people to find it.”
And that’s where SEO comes in.
2. SEO (Including Link Building)
In mid-2020, Daniel began working to build the SEO profile for Lolly Co’s website: lolly.co.
He didn’t do what many would do in that situation — immediately launch a blog and start publishing a flood of content targeting long-tail keywords.
Instead, he took a PR approach — seeking to increase the overall reputation of his site through link building.
“My opinion of SEO is that it needs to be PR driven,” Daniel told us. “We need strength and authority with Google so we can rank to get our content in front of people.”
Daniel partnered with Jolly SEO to kickstart the PR and backlink building process on his behalf. From the summer of 2020 through the end of the year, he trusted Jolly’s team of writers and strategists to identify highly relevant PR opportunities with high-reputation websites and press publications.
“I have so many things to worry about as a business owner,” Daniel told us. “I don’t want to be worrying about SEO on top of everything else.”
The effort gave Lolly.co a solid foundation of backlinks that will provide a reputation boost for years to come.
“Jolly has thousands of hours doing this, and they know exactly what things we should be pitching,” he added. “They make the whole process easy.”
3. An Irresistible Offer
Like many consulting firms, Lolly Co offers a free one-hour consultation for new business prospects.
But the irresistible offer isn’t the one-hour consultation.
It’s the $5,000 process workshop with a promise of $50,000 in savings.
“If I can say to you: ‘You pay me $5,000 and I’ll give you back $50,000, that’s an extremely compelling offer.’” Daniel explained. “They don’t have time or knowledge to do their own workshop, so we come in and do it for them.”
Lolly Co’s process workshops are the key that unlocks profitable, long-term business relationships.
“They are how we find out what can be automated and improved,” Daniel said. “From there, we’ll look to help them do that.”
The Payoff: Long-term Growth Engine
“At the end of the day, we could spend money on Facebook ads or pay-per-click ads on Google,” Daniel said. “And if you need an immediate response, then that can work.”
The problem is: buying ads is a strategy that doesn’t produce compound results.
“There’s no investment with ads,” Daniel said. “You’re at the mercy of the ad networks and the people competing with you.”
Instead, Daniel is building Lolly Co’s marketing funnel by choosing channels that act like investments instead of expenses.
“This way of thinking leads to continuous improvement,” Daniel explained. “I want steady, consistent growth, and for that, long-term strategies are the way to go.”
Daniel’s Advice for Other Business Owners
Toward the end of our interview with Daniel, we asked what recommendations he had for others trying to build a marketing funnel and grow their business.
Here are a few of his suggestions:
1. Don’t Chase Shortcuts
Daniel’s business is designed to help companies reduce or replace mundane, mindless tasks, and he works hard to make that a reality inside of Lolly Co. But automation and process design is different from seeking shortcuts in business.
“You really do have to put the work in,” Daniel said. “There aren’t any real shortcuts.”
2. Build for the Long Term
Every business owner wants growth. But Daniel has no desire to see “hockey-stick” growth for a services business like his.
“I work with high-growth businesses and when they go through hypergrowth phases, it’s extremely stressful for all of them,” Daniel said. “I would say that kind of hypergrowth is actually more stressful than having a business that isn’t growing at all.”
“I don’t want that kind of stress,” he added. “I want my business to grow at a steady, consistent rate, and that’s why I’m investing in long-term growth strategies instead of the short-term hypergrowth tactics you sometimes see.”
3. Be Patient with Your SEO
Daniel recommends a slow-and-steady, PR-driven approach to SEO and link building.
“SEO is a long game,” Daniel told us. “It’s my five-year play. It’s how I can build an audience over the long term without having to pay the extortion fees to run ads in order to reach the people I want to reach.”
“I’d rather see one super-relevant, super-valuable backlink per month than 500 links that are completely irrelevant,” he added. “That one relevant link is worth so much more than hundreds of low-quality links.”
4. ‘Boring’ Businesses Can Still Be Wildly Profitable
Finally, if you want to start and grow a business, it doesn’t have to be a high-profile tech startup backed by big-name investors.
“In my experience, the companies I deal with that are the most profitable are the non-sexy ones,” Daniel told us. “There’s one company I work with where the only thing they sell is these specialty light bulbs. They’re outdoor lights — the kind you put in your garden. And that company is wildly profitable.”
“Everyone wants to be the next Mark Zuckerberg, but no one thinks about starting a local storage company,” he added. “But just know that the owner of that storage company might be making $2 million a year and driving a Lamborghini.”