August 30, 2007
I haven’t been speaking at many Internet marketing conferences, because frankly the majority of them are pitchfests. Dozens of speakers are paraded onto the stage to display all the stuff they own…and tell you how you can be the next Internet millionaire just like them. Then they offer you a $1,000 to $10,000 package…one after another for 3 days straight.
At the last conference I was at…one speaker impressed me with the value and content he gave. That was Mark Hendricks. Not only did he give content through his normally scheduled speech, but he also ran a special 2 hour session that lasted until past 10 PM at night. During this extra session, I even picked up an email marketing idea I hadn’t tried yet…and that alone impressed me.
We got in contact with each other after the conference…and I’ll be speaking at his next Mastermind Conference in Atlanta on October 18th through the 21st. And you need to be a part of it…even if you can’t attend the event itself!
Find out more here:
ISS Live Mastermind Conference
After Mark scheduled me to speak, he gave me access to the Internet Success System home study course and recordings of the past conferences. I’m blown away by the content included and the high level of knowledge from the conference itself.
Here’s the deal. Mark requires you to study the complete 12 lesson Internet Success System course BEFORE you attend the conference. I personally thought this course would just be “basic” information, but it’s not. It goes into much greater detail…and actually teaches you how to set-up sites, drive traffic, find joint ventures, and more.
Because very attendee has already been through the course prior to the event, Mark hits the ground running with advanced training, constant Mastermind sessions with other seasoned marketers, along with question and answer sessions to give you exactly what you need all weekend long.
In addition, he only brings in 2 VIP Guest Speakers at each Mastermind conference. At this one he is featuring Simon Leung, Google Adwords Expert, and I…and we’ll present our most advanced training information…which I love because everyone will already be up to speed and ready to go. Anyone else who presents will come directly from Mark’s Internet Success System Gold Members…members who have taken his information and succeeded with it. They’ll be sharing with you exactly how they applied what you’re already learning.
The most interesting aspect is that Mark doesn’t “sell a conference.” He creates a long-term Mastermind group where he takes you to another level at the conference…and through regular monthly sessions.
Find out more here:
ISS Live Mastermind Conference
For only $67 per month (the price of becoming a silver member of the Internet Success System), you’ll receive:
– Your attendance at the October 2007 Internet Success System LIVE Master Mind Conference in Atlanta, Georgia AND all future ISS LIVE Master Mind Conferences (ongoing value: $697.00)
– Your copy of the complete Internet Success System Home Study Course – with all 12 recorded lessons, all handouts, all transcriptions, all resources, and all teleconference privileges (value: $697.00)
– Access to the complete recordings and manual from the October 2007 ISS Master Mind Conference (value: $697.00)
– Access to the complete recordings and manual from the March 2007 ISS Master Mind Conference (value: $697.00)
– Access to the complete recordings and manual from the October 2006 ISS Master Mind Conference (value: $697.00)
– Access to the complete recordings and manual from the March 2006 ISS Master Mind Conference (value: $697.00)
– Access to the complete recordings and manual from the October 2005 ISS Master Mind Conference (value: $697.00)
– Access to the complete recordings and manual from the March 2005 ISS Master Mind Conference (value: $697.00)
– 8 Followup Bonus Sessions Mark Hendricks did for John Reese’s “Traffic Secrets” program (value: $497.00)
All for only $67 a month…
ISS Live Mastermind Conference
If you can’t attend the live conference, that’s okay you still get the past and future conference recordings and handouts.
If you want to become one of his Gold members, you’ll receive $4,282 in additional benefits and bonuses, and it’s only $97 a month. Find out more about that option on his website:
ISS Live Mastermind Conference
Even though you’re only paying $67 a month for all the above (including attendance at the Mastermind conference), Mark still includes a full money back guarantee. If at any time during the first 90 days of The Internet Success System program you are not thrilled with the content, advice, and service – he will cheerfully refund all of your money. After the first 90 day period, you may cancel your membership at any time and not owe any more monthly payment fees.
So how much does the conference really cost you? It’s less than two months from now, just enough time to go through the pre-event materials, so it will cost $134 to attend the conference. If the conference isn’t everything you wanted and more, you can get a complete refund. If Mark isn’t blowing you away with the Mastermind Forum he is providing you every month, you can cancel at any time and owe nothing more.
This is the kind of conference I’ve been waiting to promote and be a part of personally…
August 27, 2007
Your business is not based off your first sale to a customer. That’s not a business. That’s a product or a promotion. You don’t have a business until you have at least 10 different income sources coming in. This might be ten different products you offer. It might be a mixture of products and services. It might even only be one product you personally sell, and nine outside sources of income (such as a affiliate programs and joint ventures).
The key here is you produce a customer once…and you sell to them over and over again. They become a “valued client” that you build a relationship of trust with. You spend a lot of money finding and closing this customer. You must find a way to continue to help this client reach the goals they’re looking for through other products and services.
Here are a few examples…
Offer #1: Related Items
Offer your customer something else related to their first purchase. If you sell dog food, what else do your customers want? Obviously they may want dog toys, bones, beds, and maybe even dog clothing. They might want books and DVDs on how to pick out a new puppy or train their dog. They could be interested in a membership site to hang out with other dog lovers who want to train their dog…or possibly even a site about traveling with their dog.
Brainstorm a little. Use a dry erase board or a plain white sheet of paper with no lines. Write whatever you currently sell very small in the middle. Then start making lines going outward for it where you write down everything else related to your product or service. This is a simple form of mind mapping. Once you draw a line and figure out something else related to your product draw additional lines from that for other items related to it. You can eventually come up with dozens and possibly even hundreds of related products and services to what you’re currently selling.
Offer #2: Information Products
I love selling information products. It might cost you $1.60 to duplicate that DVD (http://www.kunaki.com), but it sells for $19.95 to $100. Where else can you create those kinds of margins? And information products fit almost every possible market. If you offer any type of professional service (copywriting, coaching, dog training, etc.), you can record a video explaining exactly how to do it. The surprising thing is most of your buyers learn from your material, and they prefer to hire you to do it for them. Instead of costing you sales, it generates more sales because you’re now perceived as an expert on the subject.
Offer #3: Services
Let’s say you sell information products, software, or tools to do _______. Fill in the blank with virtually anything you offer. Your customers will pay you to do it for them instead of them doing it themselves. See the above listing. For example, the copywriter teaches a course on how to do your own copywriting in 10 easy steps. He/she can then charge a premium fee for those who prefer it done for them!
Offer #4: Continuity Programs
This is my favorite type of business…continuity programs. This is when someone agrees to let you charge their credit card every single month. It could be for a membership site, newsletter, coaching program, DVD of the month, software use, etc. I currently have three programs like this in my coaching business: monthly coaching, monthly newsletter, and Online Automation software.
Offer #5: Joint Ventures
No matter how many products and services you sell of your own, you’re still going to be able to make more offers to your client base. Joint venture with other companies to offer their products and services. And the best way to generate a large number of sales is to always make these deals special. By ordering from you, they get something special they don’t normally get from the joint venture partner themselves.
This could be a special discount, a special bonus, or it could be something you personally add to the deal. If you’re negotiating for a special joint venture to your large list, you can easily ask for some type of special from your partner. If you’re just promoting an affiliate program, you can add in your own bonus. For example, I’ve run special “how to use the product you’re buying” teleconferences to help my clients use something they buy. When selling seminars I’m going to be at, I’ve also given 20 minute or 30 minute coaching sessions free to my buyers.
Offer #6: Special Events
Run a special event for your customers. This could be a free customer appreciation conference (where you teach and train them over 1 to 3 days and you make profits from offering them additional products and services). You could also hold a teleconference or webinar for the same purpose…customers only!
Offer #7: Membership Discounts
You might offer a membership type program. These programs started with “frequent flyer” cards…where you earned miles for everything you purchased. I’m sure you’ve noticed they’ve expanded into grocery stores, nutrition stores, and even clothing stores. You earn points back from all your purchases. When you earn enough points you may get a gift certificate or some other type of gift.
Even Internet businesses can get into this. Amazon has their “Amazon Prime” program where you pay yearly for fast shipping on all your purchases. Dan Kennedy runs conferences where his silver subscribers get a $100 discount, his gold subscribers get $300 off, etc. As members purchase higher level memberships from him, they get specials. In my own business, my monthly newsletter subscribers get regular customer only specials…and my coaching clients get reduced pricing on everything.
August 23, 2007
I see it happening all the time. The new business owner gets excited about their online prospects. They read a few ebooks, pick up a couple of courses, and get started with their first product.
And for their first product, they create a $7 ebook…or maybe they go way out on a limb with a $10 product. Their concept is that with such a low price, it should be easy to sell.
Sure, you may sell more at this low of a price, but what’s your overall strategy? How do you upsell them to a higher ticket item? What are the other products you make available to them?
Here’s a rule you must always remember…
Good marketing will not overcome bad math!
You have to sell 100 copies of that $7 product to just make $700. If you want to earn at least $5,000 this month, you have to sell 715 copies…and that’s counting you as having zero advertising expenses. That’s a tough road to follow. Averaging 24 sales a day without advertising just to earn an OK income is not an easy to plan. And it’s never one I’d want to follow.
Do the math! Let’s say you want to earn a million dollars. Sell 100,000 items at $10…or 1,000 items at $1,000.
Please note that high ticket could also mean $5,000, $10,000, $20,000 or more. These higher ticket items greatly reduce the number of customers you need to reach your goal.
What if you sell 10 of your $10 product this week, you make $100. On that $1,000 product, you made $10,000. Can you live on $100? Not likely. Can you live on $10,000 a week? I surely hope so, or we need to take a serious look at your lifestyle!
How about taking care of the customers? A surprising fact I’ve found is often the higher ticket customers are less demanding. With a higher ticket item, you obviously need a lot less customers…which means less customer service on it’s own…and less staff. So less expenses in selling those higher ticket items.
You do the same marketing work for more profits. You have to create a sales letter, autoresponder messages, JV letters, etc. for either product. The sales letter for the higher ticket item might be a little more detailed, but those same details can find their way into your email messages, videos, teleconferences, etc. You make more money from the same work when you sell higher ticket products.
So what’s the purpose of a low cost product?
I’ts a lead generator for your high ticket items. Build a stronger relationship with your customers. If you’re selling another product first, you can also move into additional marketing such as direct mail or phone to sell the higher ticket item.
So the only question left is how do you develop higher ticket products?
One key of course is by adding additional value. Review my previous article on 20 Ways to Add Value to your products and services. Always increase your value until you’re giving way more value than what you’re asking for in price.
Another key is to change who you’re marketing to. Pick markets where your customer have money…seek to sell to the affluent instead of those barely getting by. A great way to start this is through picking up a couple of magazines such as the Robb report. For me, this was difficult at first since I came from the place of being poor and in debt. So it was hard to wrap my mind around the fact that there were a lot of niches where people had money…where they bought $5,000 golf clubs and attended $25,000 marketing conferences.
Yet, that’s one of the biggest changes you can make…a change in your mindset. In most businesses, people are willing to spend money to get what they want. And these are some of the best customers you can ever have…if you focus on them and deliver exactly what they’re looking for.
August 21, 2007
I had a wonderful time off last week. It’s great to spend time away from your business…where you don’t even think about it for a week or more. You come back refreshed and re-energized. If you can’t take time fully away from your business, you don’t own a business. You simply own a JOB…and a poor one at that (good jobs provide paid vacations).
As always, while I was off, money kept coming in. Products were sold. New subscribers were added to my lists.
What I found most interesting though was that my RSS feed subscribers and email subscribers to this blog went up while I was on vacation. Even though I didn’t have any new posts added here over the last week, I came back with more subcribers than when I left. There was less traffic here on the blog while I was off, but I personally care more about the long-term subscriber numbers.
When was the last time you took a complete vacation? This means not answering your cell phone (it wasn’t even turned on all last week), not answering business related email, and not reading any business blogs.
One thing I realized is that I’ve been letting Friday’s slide into work lately. My favorite schedule is working Monday through Thursday with a 3 day weekend every week (except for occasional conferences a few times per year).
Well I started off by answering emails Friday morning…and then I kept giving myself excuses why I should do a little more on Friday. Eventually I started letting work slide into Friday as a work day. BIG MISTAKE! I could tell the difference over the past 2 months as I was getting tired of working on into Fridays and accomplishing less on other days.
So I will reinforce my normal schedule of Monday through Thursday only. This keeps me full of energy and excitement for when I’m working with my clients and on my own businesses.
What schedule works best for you? You might love long weekends like I do…or you might thrive on longer vacations. Maybe you prefer taking off a day every other day. It’s up to you to determine and possibly even experiment with what kind of schedule produces the absolute best results.
It’s so easy to allow yourself to work more, but you’ll quickly find those extra hours are not accomplishing anymore. You’re simply wasting them because you’re not at 100% focus. It’s not a contest to see who can earn the most money the fastest. To me, it’s all about earning more, working less, and having fun doing it.
August 10, 2007
Just a quick note today to let you know I won’t be posting over the next 10 days. Nope…I’m not disppearing. I’m just taking a vacation and that includes from the blog. I’ll be back after vacation.
I could of written posts ahead of time or brought in a guest blogger, but that’s not what I decided to do this time around.
As a sidenote, when I get back we’ll be covering instant strategies to boost your sales and techniques to promote any local business (including why your business wants to go local as well).
Here are a few great posts from my fellow bloggers to help you handle my disappearance:
August 8, 2007
The August issue of my monthly mentor club newsletter is being sent for printing and mailing this Friday, August 10th, at 9 AM Eastern time. If you’re not a member before then, you’ll miss out on the insiders secrets to all my research methods.
Sign up today at:
For example, I discuss the one tip that will change your life. I did this for 30 minutes a day for 3 months early in my business and it literally transformed my income during that period. I went from broke and in debt to making millions online…and a good portion of my success came from this one little easy to follow tip.
Next I cover the my online/offline research strategy…and where you can find the most powerful short ads possible for your niche market (and no, I’m not talking about Google Adwords).
Discover how to do an advanced survey of your audience that goes well beyond the normal “probe” campaigns many gurus talk about. Doing this correctly allows you to deliver the exact sales copy message your viewers need to hear…to buy now.
If you’ve ever wondered how to use a “swipe file,” I cover this in the August issue. You’ll find out how almost your entire sales letter can be put together using content straight from other people’s proven letters…and you can do it all 100% legally with no risk.
Would you like to know the “secret formula” top copywriters use to write their headlines…It becomes so easy once you’ve seen the formula. Once you see it, you’ll write it down and use it to produce winning headlines again and again.
In all, the newsletter is 11 pages of the hardest hitting information on making money online sent out every single month. You’ve seen the articles and value I give here in this blog. The newsletter goes deeper with exact systems I follow and contains private information I never share here.
You also receive 5 very special bonuses delivered immediately when you join…and I do “call-in” days for club members at least twice per year.
August 6, 2007
Method #1: Email Newsletter
Stay in touch with your prospects and customers by email. Send them valuable related content and make them offers they can’t receive normally if they’re not on your list. The key principle here is the right mix of content and offers. Send offers only and it looks like you don’t care about them. Only send content and you won’t make any money. So mix the two. My newsletter is handled by http://www.netofficetoolbox.com.
What types of content can you put in your newsletter? You can send out anything related. For example, a health business could send out workout routines, diet plans, reviews about workout equipment, jokes about the gym, recipes, etc. A golf newsletter could write product reviews, mental tips, golfing tips, interviews with experts, etc. If your audience is interested in the subject, it becomes a possibility for your newsletter. Some of the articles could be written by you and your staff. Other articles could be written by others. Go to a site such as http://www.ezinearticles.com to find a load of articles relevant to your niche for free use.
How often should you send your newsletter? Send it at least once per month minimum. An even better frequency is to send it weekly. If you’re using it correctly by providing good content and an offer in each issue, you should see a surge of sales made whenever an issue goes out. I’ve worked with businesses who send out their emails three or more time per week, but that requires quite a bit of work and concentration. So it’s your choice…what frequency can you produce consistently?
Method #2: Direct Mail Contact
Since email is free, many businesses want to focus exclusively on it. That’s a mistake. Your customer’s email boxes are loaded with spam, personal emails, and pitches from every type of company. If this is the only form of contact you use, you’re missing out…as many of your readers aren’t even paying attention. I love email. I’ve made a forune using email. It should never be the only way you contact your customers though.
Get your customers off the Internet. Send them your best offers in the mail. Put together a sales letter and/or a postcard promotion. Then send it to everyone who has purchased from you in the last year. A good rule of thumb is to come up with a direct mail promotion every quarter (every three months). If you’re aggressive you might put together a promotion each month or a series of several contacts one right after another.
One of my favorite tools is to mail out greeting cards to your customers. Send out a Groundhog day card or some other type of unusual card (everybody sends Christmas cards). You can even set greeting cards to go out on a schedule like 4 times a year. It can be automatic just like an autoresponder system. Check out http://www.mycardsystem.com for instructions on how to do this and I’ll even pay for you to send out your first card.
Method #3: Phone
No…I’m not suggesting you become an annoying telemarketer. What I am suggesting is you contact your customers to let them know about any event you’re holding coming up soon. For example, you might be holding a special webinar on Thursday. Use a voice broadcast to contact all your customers to let them know about it on Tuesday. Check out http://www.voiceshot.com as an example of one.
If you’re having a very important special that’s only going on for a limited time, you can use a voice broadcast to notify them that the special is over in just a day or two. I’ve even worked with a seminar company who used voice broadcasts to remind people to show up for the seminar they paid for (yes, they had a big problem of people forgetting to attend the seminars they already paid for).
August 3, 2007
Let’s increase the average transaction level with your products and services using these 5 methods.
Method #1: Increase Price
How do you increase the price? It’s simple. You raise the price…no other changes. You can even let your customers know the price is going up on December 3rd. If they want the product at this price, they need to order it now (I’ve found that a great way to increase sales). You increase prices by 10% to 20%. In some cases, you might even want to bump prices by 50% or more.
Obviously the best solution of all is testing the price to see where the most effective selling point is. Another option is to increase the value of what you’re offering by adding in other bonuses along with the primary product. In other words, create packages instead of just selling individuals. Check the end of this section for 20 ways you can increase the value of what you’re offering…and increase the price.
#2: Add Basic and Deluxe
You currently have a basic version of your product selling well, and you’ve determined by testing it is at it’s optimum price. You’re still not done. You can also put together basic and deluxe options on your packages.
Let’s say you’re selling a product for $27. What could you add to it to make it worth $47 or $97? Maybe add 30 days of email support and a 30 day step-by-step report. They can buy the basic version at $27, or they can buy the deluxe version with the step-by-step plan AND 30 days of email support for only $97. It’s their choice.
Method #3: Upsell on Order Form
I use http://www.netofficetoolbox.com as my shopping cart and it gives you the ability to offer upsell packages right on the order form. If they’re ordering product A, you can suggest product B also to go with their package. This is an easy way to increase your sales and I use it when I’m not using a basic and deluxe option on the product. It is possible to include too many upsells where you annoy or confuse your customers and they don’t buy. Keep that in mind (that’s why testing is the winning option).
This works best when you have multiple products in a niche and they don’t all have basic and deluxe options. You just cross sell them on the order forms (make sure they are related to the same goal). You’ll find 20% to 40% often will take you up on your upsell…immediately increasing your income per customer.
Method #4: Upsell on Thank You Page
After someone buys from you, what happens then. If you’re like most companies you take your customer to a “thank you” page letting them know about when you’re shipping it out or providing a link to download. You’re missing out if that’s ALL you’re doing. Your thank you page should contain an additional offer. In some cases, you might even want to list several of your other related products on your thank you page. This is one place a catalog approach works well.
They’ve already bought from you. Their credit card is still out. What else will help them reach their goals quickly? You’re holding them back if you don’t do your duty and let them know additional resources to accomplish their desires. It’s in their best interest to show them other products and services you have available.
You could even run a “one-time offer” on a thank you page where you offer another product of yours at a discount price or with an additional bonus if they take action now. If they don’t buy now, they will not get the special!
Method #5: Upsell on Phone
After a customer orders, have a staff member call them to thank them for their order and tell them when it will be delivered. While they’re on the phone, they can also offer “today’s special” for a discount price on another one of your products. Plus they’ll get reduced shipping since it can be included in the shipment already being sent out.
With the right offer, 30% to 50% of your customers will jump on this. This is more money in the bank and increased value from the sale. All of these upsell strategies are being given to you to get you in the transaction value mindset. If customers are currently averaging $50 per sale, how can we get that to $75. Ok, we’re at $75, how can we get that to $100? How can we make more from this customer list while continually providing more value to all our clients?
August 1, 2007
Don’t make business difficult. There are only a limited number of ways you increase your income. If you’ve ever listened to Jay Abraham, he talks about the 3 ways to grow a business:
1. Increase Number of Customers
2. Increase Your Average Transaction Value
3. Increase the Number of Times Your Customers Purchase from You
If you have 100 customers who spend $100 with you twice a year, you have $20,000 in sales. If you have 200 customers who spend $200 with you four times per year, you have $160,000 in sales. By doubling each number, you experience geometric growth across the board. Just concentrating on adding more customers is a recipe for failure in any competitive marketplace…and the Internet is becoming more competitive all the time. The key is improving in all three of these major areas.
I take this a little bit further and focus on five primary areas with my clients:
1. Traffic (or leads, or visitors, whatever you want to call them)
3. Average Dollar Sale
4. Number of Transactions
5. Multiplication Marketing (referrals, affiliates, viral, etc.).
It’s the same basics, but it allows me to focus on a few additional areas. I want to increase the number of leads coming in…and my conversion of those leads. Plus I want to turn my customers into referrals in some way. Offline we usually call these referrals. A client refers you to two or three of their friends. You spent whatever marketing expense to get them as a customer…and now you generate three additional leads for free (where the conversion rates will be higher because of the relationship). Online this is often called “viral marketing.” Your marketing message spreads like a virus by your prospects and customers for you.
I don’t like being involved in any type of business where there isn’t a multiplication approach occurring, either through referrals or viral marketing of some type. Spending money for every single lead gets expensive in any profitable marketplace. If you know every new customer you pay to bring in is worth two additional customers, and all of them will buy four more times this year from you, you don’t sweat it for a second when you lose money bringing in that customer. If it costs me $100 to get a new customer to buy a $100 product, so what if I also know they will refer two other new customers…and all of them will continue buying from me?