We reviewed Joshua T. Osborne's BAM University otherwise known as Bad Ass Marketers
In this article, you will learn the 15 things you should know about digital real estate.
1. What is BAM? What model do they teach?
Cool Marketers (BAM) is a program created by Joshua T. Osborne to teach the rank and rent model of lead generation.
This is where the core teaching of the rank and rent model of local lead generation was learned.
Like LG, BAM specifically teaches how to generate leads for local service based businesses with what they refer to as digital real estate.
Joshua T. Osborne's story is like a great underdog/redemption story.
He grew up in a troubled situation, and didn't really help his situation by being mischievous.
In his 20's, he even did two stints in prison.
After Joshua got out of jail and started changing his life...
Going from just a laborer for a moving company to starting what would become one of the largest moving companies in Colorado!
He started getting into digital marketing in 2015 (thanks to Dan James).
Now, Joshua T. Osborne:
2. What is digital real estate?
BAM teaches that digital real estate is a website that is devoted to generating leads for local service based businesses.
The website alone can be built and ranked to provide a steady flow of inbound leads…
But Josh also teaches to build and rank a Google My Business (GMB) listing too.
This is the essence of the rank and rent model for digital real estate.
The overall outlook of owning lead producing digital real estate is good.
Steps to Creating Digital Real Estate
First, you must build the properties in a good location.
Second, you must rank them using a skill called Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Finally, when your digital real estate is producing leads, you will need to find the service based business owners who are willing to pay for them.
3. Is Rank & Rent a Scam?
The rank and rent model that is taught by BAM is not a scam.
Instead of using the ranking tactics of SEO on a local service based business’s website…
You are applying them to a website that you own to generate leads for local businesses.
It’s all about positioning your website to become valuable to someone else.
That someone else is a local service based business who may be very good at what they do…
But simply don’t have the skillset or time to generate more leads for themselves.
Rank and rent is a specific method of lead generation that utilizes SEO in order to gain organic leads.
For home service based businesses like plumbers, electricians, or roofers, big companies like:
BTW, HomeAdvisor even purchased Angie’s List in 2017, but opted to keep it as a stand alone brand.
This is the rank and rent model on a national scale...
It happens more times than you can imagine.
These large companies often provide leads that are shared among multiple business owners.
You could provide leads through the rank and rent method that are exclusive to your clients!
Exclusive leads are a huge selling point!
By owning your own digital real estate, you will be providing a service that is both needed and wanted.
4. What's Taught In BAM University?
There are several skills that are put together in modules to help you learn and implement the rank & rent method for local lead generation with your own digital real estate.
It takes several skills combined to accomplish it...
And being a well rounded, results driven marketer is what Josh calls being a Bad A$$ Marketer.
Here is an overview of the skills that are taught in BAM...
"Business owners want someone they can build a relationship with who is a cool at marketing!"
Joshua T. Osborne
5. Picking a Prime Location for Digital Real Estate
Like in traditional real estate, it’s all about location, location, location.
By that, I mean your digital real estate will succeed or fail based upon a few things:
BAM teaches to pick niches within the home services industry, such as roofing, landscaping, appliance repair, etc.
Because as long as there are houses, there will be service calls.
This means that these service providers constantly need new homes to service in order to stay in business.
You can find 40+ plumbers in a small-medium sized city like Muncie, Indiana with a population of 68k people.
But you can only find 1, maybe 2, aerial application (planes that spray fertilizer on crops) businesses that serve an area the size of Muncie.
So your niche and location need to work with service demand and number of potential rental clients.
Avoid these Niches
It should also simply make sense, like snow plowing won’t work in Miami, Florida...
Unless you want business every 50 years or so.
Not only are you looking for a niche & location that makes sense, have a good enough search volume, and have enough businesses to potentially rent from you…
Those top service providers need to also match your Search Engine Optimization skillset.
What is the point of building digital real estate if you can’t actually rank it to rent it?
You will be taught how to deep dive into all of your potential competitors’ sites.
This process of in-depth analysis will provide you with a better understanding of their:
Finding out as much information as needed on the front end will save you countless hours of wasted time later on!
6. Targeting Local Service Keywords
The cool part about optimizing for the search engines, is you can target multiple keywords.
BAM teaches the importance of targeting local service keywords…
Meaning the actual services that people would be searching for in that area.
From our plumber example in Muncie, some of the major keywords you could target would be:
I think you get the idea.
Think of the person’s intent behind their search phrase.
For example, someone might search for:
Are they looking for ideas on a new kitchen sink?
Do they want an image of a kitchen sink?
That’s not exactly buyer intent for a plumbing service call.
However, if they search for:
That is a much higher intent and they might need to call a plumber.
Then, it would be important to further optimize your digital real estate to reflect that those services were being completed in that specific location.
From our example above, we would want anyone in Muncie experiencing clogged drains to find us.
But all of this comes during the building and ranking of your digital real estate.
7. Building Digital Real Estate
A lot of people automatically disqualify themselves from attempting any online business model.
They think, “I can’t program” or “I don’t know how to code.”
But everything changes with platforms like:
Platforms like these use a simple drag and drop building feature.
Prior to starting a website, you’ll need a domain name.
This is where all of your previous research comes into play.
If someone needed an emergency plumber to come to their house and they Google searched "Emergency plumbing near me"
The near me protocol pulls their location inside of Muncie, IN...
So, Google is now looking for "emergency plumbing in Muncie."
Google used to have a strong preference on exact match domain names, like:
But now you can also see great success with a partial match domain, like:
You can also have success with a branded domain, like:
This domain choice will be important as it will also impact how your Google My Business listing is set up.
Implement tracking phone #'s across all marketing campaigns
The very next step you’ll want to implement is getting a tracking phone number.
This is important if you are ever going to run multiple methods of advertising to generate leads so that you can actually see the ROI on your efforts.
Then, it’s on to the heavy lifting of writing content and acquiring relevant media for the website.
Content must be purposeful and valuable for its intended audience.
Knowing which keywords your competitors are using in their content should help guide your creative process.
This is also important for the ranking process too.
Don’t worry though, Josh covers all of this very well in BAM University.
8. Ranking Digital Real Estate
Ranking digital real estate is all about Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Actually, it’s speculated that there are over 200 factors that Google considers in their ranking algorithm.
On-page SEO is optimizing each page of your website to target local service keywords.
Focusing on things like:
You’ll also want to optimize your Google My Business listing too.
Technical SEO may be a bit trickier to nail down for those new to the game, but it is still important.
This generally refers to things like:
While On-Page SEO and Technical SEO communicate to search engines your website’s trustworthiness to provide answers to search queries…
Off-Page SEO is the popularity contest that gets the attention of search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo.
Of course, I’m talking about backlinks, and every link from another website to your website or GMB is a vote.
Backlinking may be one of the most controversial topics in the SEO world…
But everyone agrees that it is absolutely essential in ranking digital real estate.
Avoid Spammy Links
Because backlinking is so important, you've got to be very picky about what is influencing your website.
As a general best practice:
By having all three of these areas of Search Engine Optimization working in your favor…
Your digital real estate will start producing leads, which makes its value potential tremendous!
9. Renting Digital Real Estate
For a lot of people, sales can be very intimidating… but renting out digital real estate isn’t exactly sales.
If you’ve followed the training and put in the work, eventually you’ll start getting leads.
Once you have a live person who is wanting to at least receive a service quote, you have all of the negotiating power.
It’s truly a game changer when it comes to your positioning and pitch.
BAM does an excellent job of going into detail about exactly how you should position yourself…
Which is adaptable depending on the niche that you wish to serve!
Inside of BAM’s sales module, they walk you through the process of discovering the type of client you want to work with…
As well as the action steps necessary to start landing those clients before you even have a lead!
But the cheat code in the sales system is providing leads in advance.
Power of providing results in advance
By providing leads in advance, you are proving that you can actually deliver the results they want!
Normally, you would be:
All to just get potential clients into a conversation that you could show them the value you could bring...
In hopes that they might actually hire you.
Having leads in your hand, turns what used to be you pitching your services to a potential client...
Into them pitching you on why they would be a good business partner to work with!
Why building & ranking your own digital property is better than doing SEO?
This is EXACTLY why it is so much more valuable to use SEO to rank your own digital real estate, rather than ranking other people’s websites.
Sure, gaining this skill is very valuable in the marketplace that you can get paid well to do…
Until you’ve done your job and they no longer need/value your efforts.
In a moment after you’ve spent countless hours ranking their website, they’ll thank you for your work and fire you in the same breath.
Then you’ll be left without income and a good resume?
Instead, spend your time ranking digital real estate that YOU own, and if businesses decide to move on from you…
You’ve still got the most valuable piece to the whole equation, leads.
At that point, you can go to the competitor down the road and make them an offer they won’t refuse.
Ownership is the path to true freedom.
10. Boosting Digital Real Estate with Paid Ads
One of the downsides to the rank and rent method is the lag time during the ranking process.
That is the time between putting in a ton of front loaded effort, and then waiting until the leads start coming in.
If you aren’t pre-selling your digital properties, then you might want to consider trying some paid ads.
Will you have to pay out of pocket for ad spend?
Is it worth doing?
If you can afford to do it, absolutely.
BAM teaches on both Google Ads and Facebook ads for leads and for finding an initial business to work with.
Setting up some well crafted ads could start producing leads immediately.
This could cut the time to rent down significantly…
If those ads turn into leads that secure a renter, you could use the income to continue running ads until your organic leads start coming in.
Local businesses running paid ads are already investing in getting more leads. Reach out to them first to see if you can help them in those efforts.
11. Pro Tip #1 - Create Lead Generating Systems for Yourself
Speaking of getting new clients, as you start building more digital real estate...
You’ll quickly realize how big you want to scale.
Some people build enough digital properties to have a decent side income...
While others aim to completely replace their working income.
Then there are others who wish to take these skills and grow a digital marketing business out of it.
Josh has done all of the above.
In fact, one of the modules in the training teaches you exactly how to set up lead generating systems for your services.
BAM really provides great value for those who are looking to follow in his footsteps of creating a successful lead generation business.
If you are following the rank and rent method, you can make it a practice to offer free trial periods or a set number of leads.
These are low risk, high rewards positions that would really help you to continually gain new business.
There are also strategies involving LinkedIn, Facebook groups, Facebook Ads, etc.
BAM covers several good methods, but the best method is whichever one gets you results.
12. Pro Tip #2 - Maintain Healthy Finances & Business Structure
For a lot of people, this is their first time owning a business.
This comes with a lot of responsibility that could lead to a few negative surprises along the way.
BAM offers an entire module of lessons to help cover these essentials of business.
From legally forming a company to how you should receive payments, this module helps fill in those knowledge gaps for you.
One of the more informative and helpful sections in this training covers a difficult and essential part of business…
Hiring is absolutely essential when looking to grow and scale a business, yet most people have never had that experience.
Josh offers some really great insights on how to do this economically and at scale.
13. 3 Reasons to Love the Digital Real Estate Business Model
Like anything, there are pros and cons to the digital real estate business model.
Here are a few of the reasons to love it.
The thought of not punching a clock 9-5 is enough to make anyone dream of a way out.
Owning digital real estate is how many have found their way out.
The ability to make money from literally anywhere in the world...
On the beach in Cabo, at a café in Paris, or at home with your kids.
I LOVE the freedom that owning digital real estate affords you.
You may think having a good salary position is safe...
But you are only a split second away from no longer being valuable to that company.
I LOVE owning digital real estate because I have complete control over it.
If there are no leads coming in, I can make adjustments.
If I am working with a bad business partner, there are plenty of others who would work better.
No one can take it away from me...
I own it.
There's no such thing as 100% passive income.
So there's no secret here that it takes a good amount of work upfront to establish digital real estate...
But once its bringing in leads and you've got a renter...
It's as close to true passive income as you can get.
Unlike some forms of digital passive income that only bring in a few bucks per month...
Depending on the niche, market, and lead volume...
You could easily be making $1,000 to $3,000 per month.
I LOVE owning digital real estate because it provides a great flow of passive income, month after month.
14. The Downside of the Digital Real Estate Business Model
I don't want you thinking that I'm not realistic about this business model.
The truth is that there are a LOT people who simply cannot find success in this model.
Here are some reasons why the digital real estate business model kind of sucks.
One of the biggest downsides to this business model is waiting for a win.
Sometimes it can take months (even years) for a digital property to start bringing in leads.
This could be due to bad research...
Or your website simply "get's stuck" on page 3 of the search engine results.
If you are needing to start making money immediately...
The digital real estate model is NOT for you.
Digital real estate is dependent upon one major skill...
Search Engine Optimization.
Ultimately, this means it's the search engine's game, and we're just playing in it.
Of course there are other search engines...
But like in Kaiju, we all know who is king of the search engine monsters.
In the early days, Google implemented changes to its algorithm to combat black hat SEO tactics.
Then, they started implementing changes just to create a world they wanted.
If you aren't playing by their rules, your site got severely penalized - if not banned.
It can really suck waking up to find out your website's traffic flatlined with zero understanding why.
Nowadays, the biggest factor are GMB listings.
A majority of local service based businesses get phone calls from their GMB listing in the map.
That's why it is so valuable to be in the top 3, otherwise known as the map pack.
Google frowns upon using a GMB for a lead generating site.
So, these listings are both valuable and extremely finicky.
If one day Google decides it doesn't like the tone of your thoughts... (kidding?)
That GMB listing gets suspended and *poof* there go 60% of your leads.
This is risky business.
Terrible Business Owners
In case you didn't realize it, there are some pretty crapy humans on this planet.
Unfortunately, sometimes they end up owning businesses.
They'll take your leads, and never pay their bills...
They'll be an absolute pain in the butt to deal with...
Worse, they'll take your lead, and do an absolute terrible job, leaving you to try to clean up the mess.
Then, they'll cuss you out when you fire them.
It is what it is, but it definitely happens in this model.
My Top 3 Takeaways from BAM:
Overall, BAM University is a solid program, and if I had to pick my top three takeaways they would be:
#1- Creating a Vision & Setting Goals is Critical for Success
From the onset, Josh is a huge fan of living life according to a vision and goals.
I absolutely love the 4 F’s framework that he places inside this course that is adapted from his personal life.
BAM teaches vision and goal setting around the four F's: Family ~ Fitness ~ Finances ~ Faith
For the new student, it really helps to establish their “why” behind doing all of it.
But not just finding your motivating why, actually setting realistic goals that you wish to accomplish.
Then, the not-so-secret sauce is breaking those goals down into daily actions.
By taking this approach to these four spheres of life according to your desires, then success doesn’t seem so unattainable!
Having a system to take something big and make it attainable is literally life changing.
#2- A Shared Community is a Superpower
BAM University has some amazing teaching, but that’s not exactly what makes this program so worth it.
Just like it’s parent program, Job Killing, the absolute superpower is the shared private community.
In the LG community, there are over 7k other students (like Josh) who are always sharing tips, tricks, wins, and help.
It’s absolutely insane the amount of secret value that is shared in these private FB communities.
There are multi-hundred, thousand, million dollar deals that are happening in these groups…
Right alongside newbies getting answers to immediate questions.
It simply cannot be overstated how valuable these communities are, especially since they are included with the price of admission.
#3- Having a Mentor is the Ultimate Hack
Josh himself gives credit where it’s due, and he attributes absolutely every part of his success to having mentors in his life.
Good mentors are absolutely invaluable, and great mentors are worth more than gold.
Instead of spending years trying to figure something out on your own… A mentor can show you the way they spent years figuring out in minutes, hours, or days.
Josh has had several mentors in his life, but the man who has taught him in the ways of digital real estate is Dan James.
They remain in close relationship to this day, as Josh has grown a successful agency and programs.
The impact of mentors on Josh’s life is why I believe he has embarked on becoming one.
Why not have the same mentor Josh has?
So Josh learned the digital real estate biz model from Dan. They are both great at teaching it.
Josh was one of Dan's students that became a top earner.
The original program with Dan has been around since 2014.
It now has over 7000 students.
I think its the biggest digital real estate program out there.
You can find out more info here.