The Secret to Getting What You Want

A man sets out on a journey of a lifetime.

The Secret to Getting What You Want

The problem is, he doesn’t know where he wants to go.

So he spends the next 40 years wandering the back roads, never really going anywhere.

Another man chooses his destination. It’s a promised land, far, far away. The dangers he faces along the route are great and the challenges seem almost insurmountable.

Yet because he knows where he wants to go, he is able to find his way, overcome the challenges and eventually reach his destination, where he retires in 10 years’ time.

One man didn’t know where he was going, and so he wandered for 40 years and achieved nothing.

The other man knew exactly where he wanted to go, and because of his belief and determination, he was able to overcome every obstacle and reach his destination in 10 years.

Which person are you?

Most people won’t define what they want until they have clarity on how they will get there.

But because they don’t know what they want, they don’t have the clarity, and thus end up doing nothing.

That’s why you’ve got to decide first what it is that you want, and be totally clear on what that is. Write it down in detail.

Only then will you figure out how to get to where you want to go.

One more thing: Once you begin your journey, take time every single day to revisit your goal.

Just like a builder continually consults the building plans, you should continually go over your goal so that your subconscious mind knows exactly what it should be doing to get you to where you want to go.

This will also help you avoid time wasting activities that you don’t need.

Advanced Tip: Measure what you treasure.

Whatever your goal might be, take daily measurements of how you’re doing.

For example, if your goal is to reach a certain income level, you’ll want to track your profits daily.

If your goal is to exercise and eat right, you’ll want to keep a journal of everything you eat and every exercise you perform.

Whatever your goal might be, measure what you treasure and you will get more of what it is that you want.

Biggest Mistake Email Marketers Make

I recently asked a group of marketers this question:

“When you send an email to your list, what’s your #1 goal?”

Biggest Mistake Email Marketers Make

Some of the answers I got were…

To get readers to open it
To get readers to READ it
To give some useful info
To build rapport
To sell a product
Those are all good answers…

But they’re also all WRONG answers.

Of course you want them to open the email, read the email, build some rapport, maybe give some useful info, but none of these are your primary objective.

So what is?

To get the CLICK.

That’s it.

Everything else is simply in support of that #1 goal, getting them to click the link you send to them.

Ideally, you want to train your list to click your links like (pardon me here) mind-numb robots.

You want them to click automatically – without thinking – because it’s what they always do when they open your emails.

You don’t need to sell the product – the sales page or video you send them to should do that for you.

You don’t need to tell them everything about the blog post you’re sending them to – the post will do that for you.

Your job is simply to get the click.

So how can you improve your click-through rate?

1. Give great information. People will like you and TRUST you if you give them great info that helps them. Clicking the link is just a natural extension of that.

2. Show them the ‘what’ but not the ‘how.’ You might give them a really useful tip on what drives super targeted traffic, but to learn how to do it they need to click the link. And yes, that link goes to a product you want them to buy. You haven’t sold the product in the email, but you have sold them on the method. The product is simply an easy shortcut to using that method to get the result.

3. Don’t always send them to sales letters; send them to fun stuff, too. Show them your blogposts, your videos and even other people’s stuff now and then. Did you see a video on YouTube that taught you something really valuable or made you laugh out loud? Try sharing it with your list. Remember, you want to get them in the habit of automatically clicking your links. And giving them rewards when they do, like useful information or a good laugh, will teach them to do just that.

4. Now and then surprise them with a free product. Your email tells them a method to list build using Facebook. Then you send them to a link that will give them 5 more list building methods. And when they click the link, they see a very short sales page offering the product for FREE. How much do you think they love you right now? And what are the odds they will click more of your links in the future, just in case there’s another free product on the other side?

Of course, your list and your niche may call for slightly different methods. But bottom line, your primary, number one goal of email marketing is ALWAYS to get the click.

The more trained your list is to click, the more money you will make in the long run.

7 Of the Worst Business Decisions Ever

While it’s true we can learn from our own mistakes, it’s much easier, faster and sweeter to learn from the mistakes of others.

7 Of the Worst Business Decisions Ever

With that in mind, here’s 7 doozies that belong in the Business Mistakes Hall of Shame:

Schlitz Beer – At one time, Schlitz was the best selling beer in America. Then they decided to change their formula, replacing quality ingredients with inferior ones, adding chemicals to try to mask the changes, and even changing the brewing process. All of this was to increase their profit margins so they could continue to compete on price against Budweiser.

Basically, the Schlitz people worked very hard to ruin a bestselling product. By the 1970’s, they’d changed the product so much that the bottom of each beer contained a repulsive mucus-like substance.

Of course sales plummeted, and the brand lost over 90% of its value. Schlitz beer was now relegated to the bottom bargain beer shelf for only the most desperate and poor of beer drinkers.

Lesson for online marketers? It’s clear isn’t it – quality DOES count. Whether you’re creating products or acting as an affiliate marketer, if you don’t offer your customers a quality product, they won’t be back for more. And you’ll get a lousy reputation in the process.

Star Wars – A long time ago in a studio far, far away, 20th Century Fox made one of the lousiest business decisions – ever.

In 1973, George Lucas negotiated a deal with Fox Studios on a film he wanted to direct – sort of a space western. Fox had offered him $500,000 to direct, but George offered to do it for just $150,000 if they would grant him all merchandising rights as well as rights to all sequels.

As of today, combined revenue from merchandising and sequels of Star Wars is an estimated $42 billion.

Yes, that’s right – Fox lost BILLIONS to save $350,000.

When you create a product, don’t stop there or you’ll be leaving most of your profit on the table. Create an upsell, a down sell, a continuity program, a coaching program and yes, sequels and updates.

You work hard to get your initial program sold, so why not bank on the goodwill you’ve earned to sell even more?

Take a lesson from George Lucas; the big money isn’t in the main product, it’s in everything else that comes after.

Kodak – Did you know Kodak invented the first digital camera? But they panicked and made a terrible decision – sitting on the invention so they could continue to sell film.

Naturally, it was just a matter of time before other companies invented their own digital cameras. Since Kodak owned the patent, they made millions – until the patent ran out in 2007. 5 years later Kodak filed for bankruptcy.

Lesson learned? Don’t try to fight progress. Instead, be an early adopter and use it to your advantage. Those who were first on board with online video did really well, as did those who jumped on board social media and so forth.

Things will inevitably change, which is why it’s better to roll with the flow, look for new opportunities and never stick your head in the sand like Kodak did.

Blockbuster – In 2000 when Netflix was still a niche DVD postal rental company, they offered Blockbuster the chance to buy them for $50 million.

Blockbuster laughed at Netflix’s CEO and what they thought of as his ridiculous offer. After all, they were making good money with their stores and late fees – why change?

It wasn’t long before Blockbuster was chasing Netflix, copying their DVD rental by mail plan and failing miserably.

Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy in 2010. And Netflix is now worth $30 billion.

Lesson learned? Always keep an open mind when presented with new opportunities. You never know when that crazy idea someone just pitched you could be the next Netflix.

Ayds – In the 1970’s and early 80’s, Ayds candies enjoyed brisk sales as a diet aid that helped suppress appetite.

But along came the Aids epidemic in the mid 80’s, and it’s no surprise that all of a sudden people didn’t want to buy Ayds. As of 1988, sales had dropped off by half and were continuing to plummet.

Now, most manufacturers would rebrand at this point, but not Ayds. They added the word ‘diet’ in front of Ayds, but it was too little, too late and the product was withdrawn from the market.

Lesson for online marketers? Unexpected things can and will happen. It wasn’t the manufacturer’s fault that an epidemic carried practically the same name as their candy, but it did. Had they bit the bullet and rebranded, they could have saved their product.

If you find for whatever reason that you need to make a change in your business, it’s best to do it quickly before it’s too late.

Telegraph to Telephone – There was a time when the telegraph was the most advanced communication system on the planet. Then in 1876 a fellow named Alexander Graham Bell invented a little gadget he called the telephone, and was ready to bring that invention to market.

But first he contacted Western Union, the most important communications company at the time, and offered to sell his patent for just $100,000. William Orton, the president of Western Union, turned him down and instead set up his own phone company in secret in an attempt to compete with Bell.

Bell successfully sued Western Union for infringing on his patent. In 1879, Orton was legally forced to pull out of the telephone business altogether, and of course Bell went on to build a business empire.

Lesson learned? Whenever possible, work with your competitors rather than against them. That $100,000 Orton ‘saved’ literally cost him a fortune and spelled the eventual demise of the communications portion of his company.

MySpace – In 2005 when MySpace had more users than Facebook, Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp decided to buy the super popular social media site for $580 million.

MySpace had 300 million registered users and was valued at an estimated $12 billion. So he got a good deal, right?

No matter how good the deal, if you try hard enough you can really muck things up.

Facebook was threatening their number #1 status, so to immediately make MySpace profitable, they filled the site with tons of garish ads.

Next, they instituted the same corporate policies as News Corp, thereby preventing MySpace from adapting quickly to its competition.

After 6 years, News Corp sold the site for just 6% of what they had paid for it.

Lessons learned? First, if it isn’t broken, don’t ‘fix’ it. By plastering MySpace with ads and banners, they drove away their users.

Second, have patience. If they’d spent a little time thinking about their strategy to monetize the site, they could have come up with much better solutions than tons of ads.

Third, be flexible. Shackling your company with corporate policies that make progress slower than a snail’s pace is not going to win the day on the Internet.

One last note: It’s really easy to play ‘Monday morning quarterback’ and talk about what these companies ‘should’ have done. It’s a lot more difficult when you’re in the day-to-day grind trying to find your way.

Something all of these companies and business people had in common is this: They did what they thought was best at the time. And sometimes that’s all you can do.

If you ever find you’ve made a colossal blunder, or even just a stupid mistake, here’s how to make it right again: Get back up, forgive yourself and then let it go. Don’t dwell on the past except to learn. If you can live in the present with an eye to the future, you’ll be fine.

We all make mistakes. Some of us just have the opportunity to make bigger mistakes than others.

Simple Trick Increases Product Sales

This one is so simple, yet diabolically effective…

Simple Trick Increases Product Sales

When you first introduce a new product to your list or your blog readers, do you simply pop a link on there with a line of text and hope they click?

Of course not. You introduce the product. You tell them what’s good about it, how you use it, why it can change their business or help them achieve their goal, etc.

In other words, you’re introducing the product and warming up your readers BEFORE you send them to the sales page.

Now here’s the mistake I see marketers making all the time…

…when they first introduce the product, they take the time to do everything we just said.

And they make sales.

Later they decide to promote the product again, only this time they forget a crucial step.

They slap that affiliate link or product link up on social media and figure people will click it and buy the product.

But they don’t click.

Why not? Because there’s no introduction to entice them to click and learn more.

So here’s what you do…

Take the copy you wrote in that email or post that introduces the product, and give it a page of its own on your site. Add your affiliate link or sales link to the bottom.

Now when you advertise the product on social media and other venues, send visitors to your intro page first. I’ve seen this little technique increase conversions 4 fold.

This Lead Magnet Doubles List Opt-ins

You’re familiar with how lead magnets usually work – you offer visitors a report or some other incentive for joining your list. Depending on your traffic source and the strength of your offer, your opt-in rate could be anything from almost non-existent to 30% or more.

This Lead Magnet Doubles List Opt-ins

Here’s the problem – EVERYONE and their uncle is offering some type of incentive to get people to join their lists. And because of this, visitors have become more and more cautious about giving away their email address.

So what can you do to increase and possibly even DOUBLE your opt-in rate?

Change things up a bit, like this:

Step 1: Create a dynamite lead magnet with great information on how to do something. For example, maybe it’s a case study: “How Janis Smythe made $4,294 in 12 days using XXX technique.”

If you’re just starting out and you need a case study to use, start Googling. Don’t forget to let the person know you’re doing a case study on them, because in this case you really should get permission first.

Or omit the names and fictionalize the personal details. That works, too.

Step 2: Write an excellent sales page. Yes, you’re giving the report away, but you still need to entice people into wanting it.

Step 3: At the bottom of the page, and perhaps to the right as well, put a download button. That’s right – no opt-in form at this point, just a ‘download it now’ button.

Step 4: Split your report into two sections. The first section is the introduction and overview. What they’ll need to do this, how much money they can make and the success they can have, and so forth. Don’t make direct promises, of course. Follow the law.

The second half of the report is the payoff, the actual technique and how to do it step by step. On the bottom of the first section, tell the readers that the step by step blueprint is in Part 2.

Sneaky, right? It gets better:

Place TWO links on the last page of the first section – one where they pay $17 to buy the second half of the report…

And a second link where they get the report for FREE in exchange for their email address.

Both links go to the same webpage.

Step 5: Create the webpage for the second half of the report. Give them the option to pay $17 and the option to get it in exchange for their email address.

You should get extremely high opt-ins using this method. Having the payment button there makes it look like they are getting an extremely good deal by giving you their email address.

And oddly enough, once in a while someone will actually pay for the second half of the report. Don’t ask me why, but they do. And that’s okay too.

The Counter-Intuitive Approach to Higher Conversions in IM

You might think the best way to make sales in the online marketing field is to promise lots of money for very little effort.

The Counter-Intuitive Approach to Higher Conversions in IM

After all, we see these products that promise you’ll rake in the dough simply by tapping your toes three times and whispering you want to get rich.

Which makes for great fairy tales, but frankly your average Joe isn’t buying it.

You know what people say (and believe)…

“If it sounds too good to be true, it generally is.”

The fact is, there are folks who make hundreds of thousands of dollars online each year.

Some do it each month.

A few do it each DAY.

So just because it sounds too good to be true doesn’t make it so.

But it will scare away a lot of buyers, because they don’t believe THEY can make a ton of money from home.

And those programs that promise the moon for a few clicks? Their refund rates tend to be in the 50% range. Ouch. Plus you’ve got to wonder how well they sleep at night.

So what’s the counter-intuitive approach to increasing your conversions in the make money online / internet marketing field?

It’s simple, really.

Tell them they’re going to have to WORK.

Tell them they’re going to have to put in an EFFORT.

And the results they get will depend on what they actually DO.

Obviously any business is going to take work. But if you don’t TELL them it will take work, they will likely mistake you for a scam.

So be honest and open about how much effort it will take.

And you’ll find your products not only sell well, they also continue to sell for a long time.

A Sweet Little Side Business You Can Run Part Time

This won’t make you rich, but it can pay the bills.

A Sweet Little Side Business You Can Run Part Time

Basically, you’re going to hire two outsourcers and then sell the websites they build for you. This has been done by at least one marketer that I know personally, and I’m sure many others have found similar success with this business model.

Here are the details:

Hire two outsourcers, possibly from the Philippines or anywhere you can get excellent full time help for about $500 each per month.

One outsourcer should be versed in all phases of website building and PhotoShop. Things they will need to do: Install WordPress sites, install plugins, install autoresponder forms, use Photoshop to create website graphics as needed, etc.

The second outsourcer is a good writer, preferably a VERY good writer, able to research and write about most any topic.

This is your team.

One thing to know – work expands to fill the time allotted. So if you give your team two weeks to build a site, that’s how long it will take. Instead, see if they can do it in 2 days. For what you want done, it should only take 2 days. In fact, for the website builder it should only take one day, and two days for the writing.

Now then, the first site your team is going to build will be for you. It should be an authority blog, containing several posts and an embedded YouTube video or two.

You choose the domain name, let them know what you’re looking for, then let them sort out everything else.

This is going to be your example website. Of course, you can continue to build this site out over time, making it a true authority site. And you can use the outsourcers to do this for you. But first and foremost, you want to treat it as your example website.

Now you launch an offer to build authority websites for other people in the niches of their choosing. You can start by notifying your list of your new service, place an ad on Warrior and branch out to Facebook after that.

Charge whatever you like – $300 is a good price but it’s up to you.

The website will be a unique authority blog in whatever niche they choose, with perhaps 5 posts already written, all the plugins in place, basic SEO, a domain of its own… you get the idea.

You’re paying your team $1000 a month, so you need to make 4 sales to be in profit.

But realistically your team can build 10 sites a month, spending 2 days on each site and working 5 days a week.

10 sales at $300 is $3,000, minus the $1,000 you pay your team leaves you with a $2,000 profit.

Of course, you can charge more, offer different packages and so forth.

For example, your deluxe package might contain 15 posts and cost $700, depending on how good your team is and how well you do at selling the sites.

If you find your team has downtime between orders, you can have them create a product for you, or build sites which you then sell premade.

There is some work in getting the sales and communicating the desires of the client to your workers. But it shouldn’t take you more than an hour a day to accomplish this.

And once your other ventures are making enough money that you don’t want to be bothered with this endeavor anymore, you can always sell it as a turnkey business.

Sweet!

The Basic Marketing Mistake You’re Probably Still Making

Short and sweet: Are you going wide instead of deep?

The Basic Marketing Mistake You’re Probably Still Making

For example, if you’re in online marketing, are you trying to reach every new marketer out there?

If your niche is gardening, are you trying to reach every vegetable gardener on the planet?

And if your niche is dating, are you targeting every single male – period?

Then you’re going too wide.

By appealing to everyone, you appeal to no one.

I once coached a woman who wanted to start a newsletter for parents.

All parents.

Of every age of child, 0-18.

Who lived anywhere on the planet.

I spent half the coaching session trying to talk her out of this strategy, or rather, lack of strategy.

She could not be dissuaded.

And I never heard from her or her newsletter again. My guess is she’s still stuck working the 9-5 job she was trying so hard to leave.

What should she have done?

Targeted brand new first time parents, or parents of 0-2 year old children, or middle class working parents of annoying teenagers, or adoptive parents, or frustrated foster parents, or…

…you get the idea.

Broad niches will keep you broke and frustrated.

Narrow niches will make you rich.

It’s that simple.

5 Methods to Advertise Your Online Business Offline

You have to admit – the online world is CROWDED with marketing messages.

5 Methods to Advertise Your Online Business Offline

It’s hard to start out and get noticed, and it’s become more difficult every day.

Ironically, some of the older methods have once again become more effective. As everyone else vies for attention online, consider doing something old school, such as…

1: Sending Postcards

When you send an email, it’s easily ignored or deleted. A message on social media carries even less weight.

But a real life, physical piece of mail that lands in their mailbox is something they will take notice of. And postcards are cheaper to mail than letters.
Here’s what to do: Decide on the goal of your postcard – do you want them to join your list? Attend your webinar event? Go to a sales page?

Once you have your goal, use testing to find just the right slant for your offer. A postcard is a relatively small space, so every word and every image has got to pull its own weight. But once you find the magic mailing piece, you can continue to mail it out for months and even years, as long as it remains effective.

Know the lifetime value of your customer. This will help you determine what kind of conversion rate you need with your postcard mailers to be in profit.
Send the postcards yourself, or use a postcard mailing service. Simply Google “postcard mailing service” and you’ll find a company to match your needs.

2: Sending Lumpy Mail

What’s the best way to get your mailing piece to stand out? Make it lumpy.

If you’ve ever received a non-profit solicitation for a donation, you probably know what we’re talking about. They send pennies, pens, calendars, packs of greeting cards and all sorts of things to get you to open their envelope. And of course once you have their free gift, the law of reciprocity kicks in and you want to send them something back.

For our purposes, think of something unusual and cost effective, such as…

A pebble (because of the rocky time they’ve had, or the rocky time ahead if they don’t get your product)

Seed packets (to ‘grow’ their business, grow their profits, etc.)

A compass (so they can find their way)

A thumb drive loaded with your promotional materials

Worry stones (because they’re up at night, worrying about their business or how to pay the bills)

Poker chips (because they shouldn’t gamble on other products or providers)

Aspirin in a packet to ease their pain

A paper wallet because you’ll show them how to fill it with money

A sand timer for when they’re running out of time

And so forth.

Again, there are services to help you accomplish this. For example, http://lumpymail.com is a good starting point.

3: Print Ads

The trick here is to make your ad look like an article in the magazine or newspaper you’re advertising in. Let’s say you’re advertising in a magazine – get an issue and see how their articles are formatted. Two columns? Three? What font do they use? What about picture placement?

Write your ad as more of an advertorial than a regular ad. You might have to put the words, “Paid advertisement” at the top of your ad, but it will still convert better than if your ad looks like an ad.

Have a great headline and use lots of sub-headlines to keep the reader on the page.

Have a strong call to action for an irresistible offer. The offer should be so good people simply cannot resist it, whatever it is.

4: Get a local column

This is an excellent technique for local business consultants. If you live in a small to medium sized city, your local newspaper might be thrilled if you would volunteer your services to write them a column each week on a topic that interests their readers.

If not, you might consider taking out a weekly ad and making it look like a column. In some respects, this is actually preferable to writing the column for free, since you’ll have more control over your topics.

Be very helpful in what you write. Only the last line or two should promote your business. The bulk of your column should be helpful information that people can use.

This will set you up as the authority and the person people turn to when they need your services.

5: Birthday cards

Here’s something that used to be common and no longer is, which is why it will make you stand out from the crowd of marketers like a beacon on a hill. Send REAL birthday cards through the mail to your best customers.

You might collect their birthday (Month and day, not year) when they check out. You might even tell them WHY you’re collecting it. Let them know it’s optional, but you’d really like to remember them on their birthday.

Most people will be eager share their birthdate with you. Or you can hop on Facebook and discover their birthday there if they have it listed.

If you don’t want to send the cards yourself, use a service such as postable.com, sendoutcards.com or thegreetingcardshop.com.

Now then – a person might interact with a few hundred people and companies online over the course of a year. But odds are you will be the only one who remembers their birthday. That makes you pretty special.

You might include an offer of a free birthday gift in your card, too. Perhaps a video you recorded for their birthday (you can use the same one for everyone) and a download link for a free product.

Guaranteed they will be opening your emails and following you closely on social media after that.

How to send a birthday card on Facebook – okay, this is obviously online, but I wanted to include it because many of our readers won’t want to send actual cards (although we HIGHLY recommend it!)

Here’s how to send an electronic card through Facebook:

Go to the Birthday Card Maker app on Facebook by typing in “birthday card app” on the search bar.

Click “Okay” for the app to access your basic profile information.

You’ll see a calendar with pictures of your friends and dates of their birthdays. Choose which friend to send a card to.

Click “send a birthday card.”

Pick out the theme of your card.

Post the card to your friend’s wall by clicking the “Send this Card” link on the card itself.

Note: If you have a lot of Facebook fans, you might want to outsource this task.

When it comes to things like investing and marketing, doing the opposite of what most people are doing is often the winning course. Now that everyone else is online, be sure to look for offline opportunities to win the hearts, minds and wallets of your customers.