March 8, 2010
I made some changes over to my MyMarketingCoach.com site this past week.
In addition I’m now providing a free PDF “The Internet Lifestyle Manifesto.”
Simply go to that page and download it. No subscription required to get the free PDF.
It shares my simple system to…
– Find the intersection of passion and profits where you create a business that provides both fun and fulfillment in your life.
– Follow my blueprint where you combine your website, social media, and unique value to reach your income goals quickly.
– 5 Ways to Profit from this fun and fulfilling business you create.
You’ll notice a few of the most recent posts on this blog included in the report (the Passion and Profits series).
I did record a new audio that also takes this message to a deeper level. It is currently available only to free email subscribers. You can register for that after you download your free PDF gift also.
Go here now for “The Internet Lifestyle Manifesto.”
March 4, 2010
My final qualification for choosing the market I want to work in is whether I have a story that fits into the market or not. Look at any good advertising and you’ll find it’s focused heavily on the “story” of the product, the owner of the company, or on a case study.
Often the story is the reason why the business was created. For example, many inventions were created because of a problem the inventor had in their own life. They wanted to solve their problem first. Later on they chose to share it with the rest of the world.
Note: this is often how I come up with product ideas in my own business by looking at the same difficulties I’ve had to overcome. A problem needs a solution. If you have a problem it’s likely others do also and are looking for a solution you can help them with.
Think about the story I share…about how I came out of dead end jobs like delivering pizzas to setup an online business. My original intention wasn’t to teach others about online business. It was to sell products produced by others. But I was so successful doing this that people started asking me to teach the same methods I was using. I taped into that story of the pizza delivery driver turned success online, because it is MY STORY.
Look at weight loss ads as another example. How many weight loss or muscle building ads have you seen where the author talks about his/her transformation story. The skinny 100 pound weakling gets sand kicked in his face, builds a ton of muscle, and never gets bullied again. The 300 pound mother takes a good look at herself, hates what she sees, and then does an about face all the way down to 120.
Those are examples of the “rags to riches” story. Loser tries everything but eventually finds the secret to success. While it doesn’t always fit, it’s a story you see very often. Our “hero” confronts an obstacle, whatever that may be, initially loses against it, finds the secret, and overcomes. The underdog becomes the winner.
Another type of hero is the “reluctant hero” story. This is the person who initially doesn’t want to get involved. Because of the need and the reality of the situation must take action and help others. They get pulled into the story because of some defining “moment.”
This one fits best especially if you have some life changing event – something that occurs that makes it easier to take action than sit on the sidelines any longer. You’ve probably noticed this one occurring quite often in “health” type issues. A person experiences the pain of loss or the pain of an illness either in their own life or in the life of someone close to them. After trying all the normal routes, they do everything they can to find the solution eventually stumbling on some methods to help others with the problem.
A third type of story is the “us versus them” fight. I’ve seen this one DOZENS of times in the financial field. Those dirty Democrats in office are out to destroy your money through inflation. Perhaps it’s all the jerks in Congress. Maybe it’s the greedy Wall Street bankers taking your money. In health this one is used as the greedy pharmaceutical companies who are lying to you.
You’re on a mission to confront these enemies and share the truth with your audience. This one can best be used WHEN you become very passionate about the subject. You get ANGRY when you think of what is being done to people in your market. And you can funnel that righteous anger into helping people achieve the results you know are possible for them.
These are just a few of the common stories people work from in their business. I’m not giving you these so you can sit there and think up a “story.” I’m sharing them with you because I want you to choose a market that you have TRUE STORY to share. That story is your competitive advantage!
Do you have a life changing event, a failure to success experience, or passion that could be channeled toward an enemy? This isn’t 100% essential, but it definitely makes you stand out more in the market…especially if you don’t have any other strong competitive advantages to work from. This really all comes back to the core question…what’s your advantage?
March 1, 2010
I’m not someone who says, “Do what you love and the money will follow.” I’d really like to say that, but it’s not always true. What I found is what you love often becomes a PORTION of your business, not the whole thing. Sometimes you still have to do some things you don’t enjoy – at least until you can afford to outsource it.
You have to balance all these principles together. Will it fit your personality and business style? Do you have a natural curiosity toward the subject? What value can you provide to others? And are others making money from it today? For example, a lot of people love to be artists. But what if you don’t have the talent (value you provide to others) or what if you do have the talent but you just love painting? If I told you to do what you love (paint), and the money would follow.
That would mean you don’t have to market. Most people who love art don’t love to market, yet that’s a requirement if you want to be profitable.
Accept the facts. You can build a business around a subject you have passion for and something you enjoy doing, but it’s likely you’ll have aspects to the business you don’t enjoy. Some of those aspects like bookkeeping can be outsourced (or hired) from day one. Other aspects like the marketing will often require your participation at least during the initial growth phase.
Now onto to profitability. I don’t ever like being the pioneer in a brand new market. Several times while researching a market I was extremely excited when I found there weren’t any Google Adwords ads. The market was “wide open.” What I later learned in both of these situations is there was a reason there wasn’t anyone advertising there. The visitors wouldn’t buy. They wouldn’t subscribe. And they were a waste of money.
That’s why I told you earlier that you need to figure out what business models are succeeding in a field. If your goal is simply to sell low cost ebooks (maybe you love writing those) but you can’t find any ebooks that can afford to advertise on Google Adwords or aren’t listed well in the Clickbank marketplace, then you might be in the danger zone.
I like to spend some time looking to see what’s already selling. Here’s where you go to do your homework:
All the above links help you find what is ALREADY selling. On the Google keyword tool, you can find out what people are searching for. When you’re searching for potential keyword phrases, also try adding in a few modifiers like review, buy, purchase, shop, or even ebook. All of those phrases mean someone is looking for purchase something.
For example, if I sell camcorders (or am an affiliate for camcorders), I might look for a keyword phrase such as “Canon HV40 review” because it definitely means someone is considering buying this camcorder soon. Or someone could be looking for “online video ebook” which means they’re looking to spend money to learn how to do online video.
The Clickbank marketplace allows you to search in categories and by keyword phrase to find what digital products are being sold. In addition, they allow you to search by gravity score. While Clickbank uses a complex scoring system for their gravity score (basically each separate affiliate making a sale counts as a point but those points degrade over time), on average higher gravity scores means more affiliates are making sales for those products. So when I’m researching the market I like to look for higher gravity scores as proof those products are selling well.
Paypal Shops allows you to see how many Paypal sales a store has made. So if you go to a website selling fishing lures and it shows that they have 5,000+ transactions, you know they’re doing a lot of sales (as Paypal can’t track other sales if they use other payment processors or have their own merchant account). Again look for subjects that have a good amount of sales to prove that the business model is effective.
On eBay you can find out what the hot items are. A majority of these products will be physical products with a very small margin on them (eBay attracts bargain shoppers), but even if you’re planning on a doing an information product you can still see what industries and subjects are hot sellers on eBay. In addition you will find some information products that make it into this list. Choose category “Books” and then “Nonfiction” to find out what big nonfiction books are selling.
Over on Amazon you can find the bestsellers in any category. Normally I start in the book section to see what book sellers are hot (if people are buying one book they will buy others). I also will search other categories for potential ideas. For example if I had a site about camcorders I’d definitely be looking in the best sellers for electronics to find out what I should cover. You can find out a LOT about what people are really buying online by spending a good amount of time in the Amazon best sellers section. Even if you don’t sell any products of your own, you will still sell affiliate products from others and need to know what’s selling.