Quit Being a Commodity

The December print newsletter from the http://www.monthlymentorclub.com is going to print on Monday morning at 9 AM Eastern. If you’re not a member of the list by December 10th at 9 AM, you’re not getting this issue. I could tease you with the benefits of the issue, but instead I’m going to publish an excerpt from this month’s newsletter right here.

This month I’m covering 8 Millionaire Entrepreneur principles of building your business. Below is Principle #2. The only way to get the other 7 is to subscribe before Monday by clicking here…

A commodity simply means there is a demand for the product, but there is not a noticeable difference between the suppliers. For example, many writers have allowed themselves to be turned into a commodity online.

Good writers were paid decently (most still weren’t paid well) for writing for magazines, newspapers, and the like. Online everyone knows they need content for their sites. But those writing articles have watched their per-article fees go down from $25 to $10 to $2.

Take a look at eLance.com or some of the other sites where people hiring writers. They’re asking for 50 articles or more for $100…and expecting top quality work to represent their business.

What will they likely get for $2 per article? Well if they’re not careful…it’s likely to be articles that were swiped right out of other people’s ebooks or private label articles without any changes whatsoever.

But what does this pricing do for someone who wants to be paid to write? It means they’re required to provide additional education before the sales process. They can’t just say what they charge. People would look at their pricing and immediately think, “Well I can get that done for $2.”

So they must educate about what they do differently. This education may take place in their sales copy or it could be through a free report (or whitepaper) they offer when you sign up for their email list. Or my current favorite would be a blog where they could constantly demonstrate their writing skills while building a relationship with their reader.

No matter what business you’re in, you must clearly educate your audience why you are different. What sets you apart from the competition? This is often called a unique selling position….and every business must separate themselves from the competition.

Even copywriters are being turned into a commodity if they allow it. I laugh anytime someone tells me they paid $500 for a salesletter. Good luck with that! Anyone who can write even decent sales copy can earn way more than this from their own projects or even writing for free for a royalty share on projects.

This is a good exercise for you. Any copywriter worth his/her salt will know how to separate themselves from the herd. If a copywriter allowed themselves to be turned into a commodity, why in the world would you hire them? What makes you think for one second they could do your product justice when they can’t write to pull a decent fee for themselves?

Take a look at a few of these copywriters and see if you can spot what each one represents as their unique selling position:

http://www.dynamicresponsemarketing.com
http://www.healymarketing.com
http://www.bestsalescopy.com

Can you spot the differences? Now do some random searches online for “copywriters” and see how they represent themselves. One thing I definitely don’t want to see is “dirt-cheap” copywriting.

One of my clients recently asked me if “dirt-cheap” would be a good phrase to use on their sales letter. Since they were selling a service, I told them definitely not. If they were telling how you could get bargains from the government dirt-cheap, that would be one thing. And it would be an incredible place to use the term.

Having a professional service dirt-cheap doesn’t give you a lot of confidence in the service. To demonstrate to her, how would you like to buy some “dirt cheap one-on-one business coaching and advice.” Doesn’t sound that enticing, does it?

I want to go beyond just thinking of a unique selling position though. That’s what everybody does. Take an additional step.

How can you present your product or service as the only viable option in the market?

That’s what someone is doing when they publish a book…or a whitepaper outlining the 10 ways to pick a ______. They’re setting the new buying criteria for the marketplace. Obviously they will be the best option to fulfill all ten items.

What buying criteria should someone have before they purchase a product in your market? How can they make sure they’re getting the best real value for their money? Now how can you educate them to understand this buying criteria?

Will you educate them through your blog, your free report, a teleconference, a webinar, or even your products? Do you realize one of the best ways to sell any service is through selling them a product that does every step in the process? They’ll look at the all the work…and hire you to do it for them instead!

Don’t skim over this. Ask yourself today…

How can you set the buying criteria of the market so you’re the only viable option?

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