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For this episode of Ecoffee with Experts, Matt Fraser interviewed Yader Gil, the founder of Progeektech. Yader discusses several useful suggestions and tips for expanding the reach of small businesses through data analysis. Watch now for some profound insights.
At the end of the day as a business owner, you have to make sure that you hold people accountable because that’s what you pay them for.
My pleasure. Thank you for connecting as well. Matt
Yeah. It’s pretty interesting. You know, so I was never interested in sales or managing or any of that stuff. So before that, I actually used to work in a restaurant as a waiter. So this manager used to come from RadioShack store to the restaurant and he’s like, “Hey, why don’t you work for us? I’m like, I’m not into sales or any of that stuff.” I’m into serving, he said will you still can serve people in RadioShack. And I’m like, okay, What can I do there? Well, you got to serve them and sell them. Whatever. Anyways, make a long story short. The guy recruited me and I started working for RadioShack, and six months later I became a manager. They move to a bigger store. And then 13 years later, I was there as a senior manager, managing over 300 employees. I trained them in development and obviously, we grew the companies and we still went to Graham normally like the last store we had. It went from $600,000 to $1.2 million a year, making an impact. Now, things that I learned from that, number one were managing people, and delegating when it comes to like performance. So of course, all these companies they care about performing. And our performance was critical on a daily basis. So I think honestly, although the thing to more than anything, anything was built building relationships either with clients and also your employees. Because I think when you’ve been genuine with people at the end of the day, obviously they’re going to buy your products. But when they see that you care about them more than the product that you trying to sell them, people really become so loyal. And honestly, I think that was our number one recipe.
Several things. So number one, of course, I was laid off from a corporate job that I have had for a long time at RadioShack. Number two, honestly, the hardest thing was when you were working as a manager, so normally you are a slave of hours, right? You work 80, 90, 100 hours a week and so most of the time I was absent from being at home with my kids or my Ex and things like that. So that led to what happened, obviously separating and divorce. And, unfortunately, you know, my wife left and the hardest thing was, how can I take care of my son or my kids at this time and provide for them at the same time and not be away for so many hours? At that time, they were very little. And so that led me to me like, honestly, I wasn’t able to pay a babysitter, pay my rent, pay my bills, my food, and at the same time, be with my kids. It was more difficult as a man, because as a man, to be honest to me, I had a neighbor, the husband thought that I was trying to hit on her but obviously I was just trying to ask you for help. A lot of the time people have these misconceptions. And so yeah, the best part of all this, a friend of mine asked me saying, “hey, why don’t you build us a website”, and I had never done that, and I said, let me check it out. And honestly, when I start learning about it, I start learning, downloading so many courses, and learning from all the best gurus at that time. And so and from the amnesty, he referred me to one client, another client, and for me to another one, and I started building pretty much the relationships from that. And so today, of course, 10 years later, going strong.
Well, I learned a lot of things. Of course, we know because the design is one thing. But of course, my interest before that was marketing . I want to know when it comes to things other than SEO, how can I outrank our competitors with research, and learn how to do PPC. That’s one thing I was doing with Google advertising especially, so you know, all those, all those things of course. But then, within that as well. Web design at the same time.
No, no. To be honest, I always liked the design. So, when I was a RadioShack. I used to design these fliers that were not allowed, but I was designing them and posturing them for business. and I never got approval, but I was doing it behind the doors for us to bring more leads.
Yeah, and bring the fliers to the parking lot, believe me and that’s the reason that we see we’re successful. So I always like design. I did like the design. Of course, I didn’t know much about design. Of course, you know, as you said, I started learning about UI UX design, about marketing, about all the different things, and I think that really helped be what we do today. But yeah, definitely it was a really amazing experience.
I started using it the first two weeks.
Yeah. And because that was the easiest thing that I could learn or anything. And then from there, I went to WordPress and during that time, that’s when we used a new platform, which today is honestly one of the strongest ones. It’s called Webflow. And so I said, Hey, somebody in a chat. I was in a chat because I was frustrated with a project that I was doing and there were so many issues that I was having. And then this guy’s like, Have you tried webflow? I think workflow can do this for you. And I say, Oh, let me check it out. So when I sign up, I try it out. And of course, ten years ago, you know, maybe nine years ago back then wasn’t as intuitive. And that is right now. But honestly, I’ve been learning so much from it since then that that’s what we use 100% today.
About seven years now.
To be honest, the flexibility of how much I can customize any designs without limitations. That’s number one. Number two, I like that. In my case, when it comes to the clients, I think that from an agency perspective, that’s one of the hardest things. One, you build and develop a website, you hand it off to the clients and they don’t know what they’re going to do. With webflow that’s what makes it so much easier because they can definitely use it, it’s for a two-year-old or a second grader, so they can actually make changes without affecting the design, without knowing any code simply. And you build obviously for that perspective, how can I make sure the client has access to these and make changes without the need of any designers or developers? And so that makes it so much easier for us.
Integration. Because the integrations that we have in there are obviously what it’s limited to, whatever you have. So in some cases, for example, people want to create functionalities that don’t exist. Like simple e-commerce, you want to add likes or you want to add a favorite. So you want to add, you know, some little different things. Definitely, you can do none of those things or create comments on a blog. You can create those things unless you use third-party applications.
If you want to do that. Otherwise, you still can do blogs through webflow, I think it’s really powerful.
Sure. Definitely, you can.
All right. I noticed that in recent news, Progeektech has announced the launch of a new service called Convert Smart Framework to support struggling small businesses and help them realize their true potential. What’s that about?
Yeah. So one of the issues or problems that we commonly see with small businesses is that they either get overwhelmed with so much information out there. In every business normally, if we know what is the process of our business, every business needs traffic, right? They need conversion, then they need sales. Those are the three main things that make any business. Right. So in this case, the question is, we’re going to get this traffic either online or offline. Where does that come from? And the next thing is, okay, now, how are we going to convert it right there and then use a website CRM or form? Social media? What are the things where all these different things are going to convert? And the last thing is, how are you going to make your sales? So with that in mind, because we normally see it as an example, people coming to us are like, Oh, help me with the website, right? We help them with the website. But that was only one part of the equation because now they need to get their traffic. They need to figure out how to do a conversion, and how to make sales. So then, end of the day, the website didn’t do its job, and then if you do the SEO, but then your website is not ready for converting, and then the content and the design are not really well. So in this case, it doesn’t do that job either. So we come up with the idea to say, what about if we build something that will help businesses from beginning to end? And in this case, we came up with Convert Smart, which at the end of the day is the end-to-end solution to help their marketing needs and their online presence.
So in this case, we help them with traffic, in this case, what do we do with traffic? We do our technical SEO. So that’s number one. When it comes to the website, we rebuild the website for them, and then after that, we actually create an automation system that will connect with all those things at the same time.
To be honest, like most of the time, data for us is incredible because, of course, there are so many ways you can go for data, right? But in this case, if we’re thinking about it from every based business perspective, data is everything. In this case, how do you know who’s your target audience? What do they do? When do they do it? Any of that information obviously, they are vital. In our case, we think is like, the role that it plays, in this case, is I don’t know, it also depends on what are we going to do with this client. But let’s pretend from the SEO perspective, right, it’s important for you to have very good research when it comes to your keywords, your competitors, all the different things, your links and, all these different stuff that is going to help you to actually use this data to, of course, make good decisions for your business. So I think definitely plays a big part in our day-to-day basis when it comes to Google Analytics, to either website all these different things.
Yeah. Yeah. We had several different projects and especially this one, we were working with dental offices during that time and one of the problems was these clients always say that we didn’t have any results. It’s like we paid it, we pay, we didn’t have any results. And so that’s why we came up with the automation stuff. And so we said, okay, well we need to figure out a way that we can track this data and educate in this case, the client for them to understand what is it? Is it working or not working? And so definitely Google Analytics is a very good thing to do or helps but of course in our case we use our CRM systems that not only give us what could be but actually what it is 100%. It’s like, hey, you got these many leads and of these many leads, you didn’t call all of them. You actually didn’t respond. You didn’t reply. If you don’t, you’re not going to get the sense.
That is 100% true.
Yes, that’s going back to the same thing though, like you said, the virtual assistants, any of those things, of course, I think it will help and unfortunately, not everybody is going to have the budget for that. So in this case, you don’t have the budget for that, you have a CRM that can automate these things for you, normally one of the things we were doing for several of our clients, actually, I would do that today. If somebody missed a call, like a call isn’t answered, automatically the system will send them a text message to them saying, “Hey, I’m sorry I missed your call, how can I help you?” And I’ll send them a text message. And the person, 90% of the time responds and says, “Oh, I was looking for this or that.” And so that conversation, two stars there, you know, so by simply creating little things like that, I know that thing we did for this was for a commercial cleaning company. And what we did was he was having a hard time converting people into the website, filling up the form, the only thing we did is implement a chat widget that he connects to our CRM, and that conversion went to 300% people. I simply want to ask that one quick question.
Yeah. Well, one thing we see right was obviously we sell traffic. So going back to the problem, right, you got to see you’re three different things, right? If you have traffic, you have to have conversion. Does that mean you’re traffic got the problem, right? So what’s the problem here? Your conversion is a problem right now. If you have traffic having a conversion, but you’re not having sales, in that case, your problem is not the first two but the last one right here. So in this case is like, well, how can I fix whatever your bottleneck is? That’s why you get to tackle it until you get it done. In their case, we identify, and we see they’re getting to traffic, right? Because obviously, they were going like 1,000% traffic, and then after they’re not having any conversion. So it’s like, you know, we simply say, hey, let’s try that chart. We put it in and then boom, though, the problem with the challenge is, Clients, have some time or excuses, right? They might say, “hey, I don’t have time to be answering the phone or chatting with people” because that’s very common and it’s a legitimate question.
I cannot agree more with you.
Yeah, I think also sometimes that’s a challenge too and I don’t know if that happens with other marketers. But, sometimes you put solutions for them and then that solution and still that not happening and then you’re like, “Come on, man, what else can I do. So one thing is to keep going back to the dentist. We actually implemented all these things and guess what it still wasn’t happening.
The problem was their receptionist, like they’re too busy with this and that. I said Ok, is it because they don’t know how to use the system or they don’t know how to answer or they don’t know how to reply? So we obviously went through some, training back and forth to make sure they get it right. But to be honest, at the end of the day, I will say the problem in this particular case was the kind of ability, not from the receptionist, but from the actual owner. Because she really put their responsibility on other people, but in the end, she didn’t hold them accountable. Do you know what I’m saying? So at the end of the day, as a business owner, you have to make sure people bring more business, that’s what you pay them for. What I think happened with this specific client was that she was busy and overwhelmed with all this stuff that she was doing that she really it was easier for her to ignore or just forget about it.
No, unfortunately, no.
Yeah. So believe me, it’s very rewarding when you see those things though. Now, in our case, though, I think today, of course, we’ve been learning from a lot of mistakes like everyone else. Now we are not on the stage where we work with everyone, because we used to be on stage where we would work with whoever knocked on our doors. But now, of course, we pre-qualify them, and we figure it out. They’re a good fit for us. So really we don’t care. Of course, we care about the results we want to bring to them, but also we care about the relationship we can build in the long term. We have clients that have been working with us for, I don’t know 5-7 years. That’s the type of relationship we like to build with every one of our clients.
No, to be honest, I have never asked a question about revenue and the reason is that most of the time people feel like, what are you talking about money, is you’re more interested in how much money they’re making, how much money is going to get paid. So most of the time I honestly care about their characters- How patient they are when they collaborate with people, How responsive they are, their attitude, their energy, to be honest. I see all these little things. And when it comes from a business perspective as well, I see like how much they want to grow, what are the goals they have in all these things, so obviously we have some red flags like..
Totally. Some of those red flags, of course, in this case, I would say it also depends, right? Because the two main things we do is to make things right. Web Design which comes to webflow. And then the other thing we do is search engine optimization. So we used to do before this, we used to do obviously PPC, but we don’t do that anymore. We focus more on these two parts, So we do webflow design, which in this case recently we’ve been working with quite a lot with, SAS companies, start-ups, and things like that, and then the SEO part as well. But some red flags here are like normally how many results they want in such a short time.
Yeah. So or sometimes they’re like they’re very demanding, like, I want this, I want you to do this, I need to buy, let’s say next week. Okay. Well, what happening next week didn’t happen, you know, and you start seeing more of their attitudes and things like that. And that’s what I was telling your attitudes are extremely important, and so other things, too, when it comes to red flags. I think is important for people to compensate, how much work we’re going to do, and a lot of the times we see, we care to help businesses, but we don’t want them to take advantage of us and so and it’s quite often a lot of the times people they’re trying to find, how can I take advantage of these people. And so in these cases, I looked at those little things too. It’s like, are they trying to take advantage of us or are we trying to really grow their business in a way that can be fair for both of us.
I got two strategies for that, one of them is either I give them a price that is way out of their reach. Unfortunately, they’re not going to be able to cover that and I’m being genuine when it comes to like I don’t want to rip them off, but in a way is like a this is what normally we charge. Is this something that can be within your budget? So normally that’s one, number two is simply I say, you know what, Thank you. But I think that I can recommend it to someone because I may not be a good fit for you.
Okay, let me send you. Let me send you.
Actually, I’m going to use it now.
Yeah. I think, normally I would always say when it comes from I’m sure you’re normally your target audience or listeners are agencies, right?
Yes. So I normally say, you know, from an agency perspective, like I think we constantly are dealing with how can we grow? And I constantly am looking for, how can we bring more leads, more revenue, and things like that. And I would say, you know, commonly, you see so many gurus out there, we’re going to bring you 5 to 10 leads every month. I don’t know how many times you see these types of emails. I get these messages every single day. I think one of the questions I probably say is that. When it comes to talking to other agencies and things like that. One of the challenges that we probably commonly have as well, will be talent. Yeah, I’m not sure when it comes to like last week.
Yeah, it’s a common problem. As we had in our case, we do design, right? I was looking for a UI UX designer, and I went to all these groups that exist on Facebook, maybe like 20 or 30 different groups, and I posted all of them. So you would not be able to imagine how many of these freelancers came, applicants came, and most of them, give you all these amazing portfolios, right? Like amazing designs, so what I did is, I was like hiring these people and then the design that they show me, then the design team and giving me, is like not even close, it’s garbage. Yeah, so what I did is like, well, what about if instead of me, out of all the ones, I think they’re the best? I’m going to pay them for all of these ones, but I’m just going to give them a test. Okay. I want to see, can we do a design for this and this and this and I give them the same design to all of them is what kind of design can get bring me. And so we did, I did that for maybe like two or three weeks to find one person out of 90 people and so that was exhausting sometimes. So honestly like it’s incredible to see how much talent is out there but you don’t actually find people that the has the level probably of design that you’re looking for. Like in my case, we’re very picky when it comes to that. So sometimes it’s very difficult to find talent. And I would say one of the things where business owners are, is or their agencies is probably created different ways for them to find these talents obviously has to sometimes can be challenging, but I think it can it can happen. This is obviously in my case, that’s what I did in my career. I pretty much paid them for the test. Hey, I’m going to pay you for the next 10 hours to do that.
For sure. Yeah, they can find me on our website, our website is. It’s progeektech.com and of course, they can find me on LinkedIn and find me on LinkedIn/Yadergil
I think I made people confused because I put it with a J, but it’s spelled with a Y.
My pleasure. Thank you so much as well, Matt.
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