Ep. 74 How to build your client base on and offline with Lauren Beebe
Have you ever wondered how to build your client base on and offline?
This week I speak with Lauren Beebe who is the founder of Like a Local Tours.
Her company offers insider NYC and Brooklyn Food, Wine, Fashion, and Artist Studio Tours made for tourists and locals alike.
Lauren started her company while still working at her 9-5 and finally took the leap when she saw the rewards and revenue beginning to grow.
Lauren’s company has been consistently rated as one of the top 10 rated tours in New York City and she not only provides amazing services to her clients but also gives back to the community.
Every $2 made from each tour is donated to a highly rated charity!
Listen on to find out how Lauren built her client base and is giving back to the community.
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In this Episode:
Why did you decide to leave your 9-5 to start your own tour company?
- It was when Lauren was opening more time on her tour guides and started to see the rewards and revenue that she decided to finally leave her day job.
- She knew that the only way for her company (Like a Local Tours) to grow is if she focused on it full time.
What is the biggest obstacle you have encountered and how do you overcome them?
- Getting over the hurdle of trying to do everything as a solo entrepreneur and taking the step to hire an assistant.
- Time management has also been a huge hurdle for Lauren and being stuck by the little things that deter her from executing on the bigger picture.
- Lauren uses Fare Harbor for her specific touring business which makes her life a lot easier as an entrepreneur.
What should you focus on when you are hiring an employee?
- Ask questions, do not just hire someone based on their resume.
- Make sure to do reference checks.
- It is better to hire someone with no experience but who has a lot of interest, than a person who has the experience but no interest.
How were you able to build up your client list and also find the right tour guides for your business?
- You should be building your company both online and offline.
- You have to be willing to wear multiple hats when you are first starting out.
How were you able to create income from the start and how do you continue to do so today?
- Having a full-time job, in the beginning, allowed Lauren to create income while she was still trying to figure out her business strategy.
- Once Lauren was getting more booking she was able to hire tour guides and was able to grow and monetize her business in a better way.
What has been the best marketing strategy that has worked for you to build your client base?
- Creating a solid email list and getting the right contacts are crucial for your business.
- Keeping in touch with those contacts and making your email content relevant to their needs.
What makes your company stand out from the other tour companies in New York City?
- It is the quality of the tour guides and the quality of the experiences Like a Local Tour offers.
What legacy would you like to leave and what do you want to be remembered for?
- Lauren is passionate about giving back to the community, every $2 of the tickets she sells is donated.
- She is also on the board of two nonprofits and works with those organizations to giving back to the community.
- Lauren also wants the people who experience her tour to be a wonderful experience in the city.
What do you nerd out on?
- Lauren nerds out on travel, technology to find the best tools to build a client base, and meeting with people who can help her grow her business.
How has having a mentor helped you grow your business?
- Having someone with experience you can get feedback and ask questions has been helpful in the success of Lauren’s business.
- Going to meet-ups and meetings can help you find the right people to give you the support you need.
What has been the most memorable encounter you’ve had while traveling?
- Meeting an entrepreneur when she was in Cuba and learning how resilient the person was to start a company in a climate with little resources.
- Lauren provided them with ideas that will help them grow their touring business.
What is a question you wished people asked you more of?
- How to get a better experience as a tourist in a new city.
- How to have a more authentic experience and to create a better relationship with locals.
What are you currently working on that is exciting to you?
- Collaborating with a food app called bite mojo
Listen to Lauren’s extended interview where she shares how to get the best local experience in a new city.
In this episode:
How are you able to travel like a local in a new country and city?
- Use companies like Trip Advisor experiences.
- You can also find out about the best local tour companies and hitting their websites directly because they may have special discounts.
- Visit wineries and distilleries and take the tour, you can then use the tour guide to find more information.
- It can also be a great idea to book your activities when you are in your destination.
- You can also check out Expedia and Airbnb Experiences as well for great activities.
How do you make friends or date when you are in a new city?
- Place yourself in group experiences.
- You can vibe with the guide and make friends. You may even get invited to dinner parties and meet more people there.
- Don’t be afraid to talk to people.
Where do you find the best places to party and do fun activities?
- Putting yourself in group settings is helpful.
- Go to the best bar and restaurants and speak to the bartender or server to pick their brains.
Where do you find places to stay that will allow you to feel like a local?
- Boutique hotels are a great way to feel like a local.
- The best site to find the best boutique hotels is Tablet Hotels.