Archive for the ‘Internet Marketing’ Category

Learning Sales Copy

Saturday, August 23rd, 2008

One of the big hindrances to the “next level” of success is identifying weaknesses and overcoming them. Unfortunately, few people are willing to learn new skills to overcome their weaknesses.

For example, when some people start out, they are reluctant to learn how to build web pages, be it through HTML, software, applications, or any of the other methods for building web content. Yet learning this small skill opens up a whole new realm of opportunities that do not exist when you can’t create a web page.

Recently, I discovered one of my weaknesses, and I am trying desperately to gain new knowledge to help me overcome it.

That weakness is in writing sales copy.

Now, I’ve won awards for my writing before – but sales copy is a whole new ballgame. Writing for the purpose of selling is something that I’ve never done before, and I believe that learning it will open me up to a whole new level of success.

After all, just about everything is sales copy. The way you speak is sales copy. The articles that funnel traffic to your web pages are sales copy. Your videos are sales copy. Everything that you do can be classified as a lead-up to a sale.

And while I am not yet an expert at copy, I have improved drastically since I start to buckle down and practice it. Here are some cliff notes that you can use and implement immediately into your writing behaviors:

1) Get to know your prospect. Learn the innermost feelings of your target audience. What is he like? What are his objections? What has he purchased before? The more you know about your prospect, the better you can reach him. Online, you can learn about your audience from browsing forums, reading blogs, or answer customer emails.

2) Identify your prospects desires in your copy. Restate the outcomes that he or she is looking for. Describe them in detail and paint a picture in your prospect’s mind so that he or she can visualize what the end looks like.

3) Push benefits. For a long time, I got caught in the trap of selling the FEATURES of a product instead of the benefits of a product. Instead of listing all the features that a product has, explain what those features will DO for the customer. People won’t care what a product is unless it can DO something for them.

In the last week, I’ve simply been implementing these three elements to my copy, and I have seen significantly higher response rates. However, I am just scratching the surface of getting to know sales copy, and I’m excited to see what it can do to my business.

To close, I feel important to suggest that you are never too old or too successful to learn a new skill that will take you to a new level of success. While it is never easy to learn something that is new, I have never heard someone say, “Man, I wish I hadn’t bettered myself by learning that skill.” This is especially true with running your own business; if you want to be successful and keep up with your competition, you better get used to training yourself to stay on top.

The Only Business Model

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

I was reading Jason Moffatt’s blog today, and he did an entire post on healthy eating. Health is somewhat of a passion of mine, and while I’m not hardcore, I do much better than your average 20-year old.

He recommended another web site, and when I visited it, I noticed the pure marketing that was all over the site. It was a membership site that you paid for on a monthly basis, and the owner was using some of the same strategies that I use in my campaigns.

Strangely, though, I was drawn in by the product. This is worth nothing, because I can catch myself falling into buyer mode – ESPECIALLY on non-internet marketing related products. When buying something educational for business, I just chock it up as a business expense and think nothing of it. But when it’s about health, or baseball, or my passions… well, I fall into buyer mode.

Allow me to switch gears a bit… I routinely get emails from people who want to know the way to make money by tomorrow. It’s frustrating to me, because I am a BUSINESS man. I don’t care to look at the blackhat methods that will generate all this cash quickly – that’s not what I’m into. I own a business… I’m a twenty year old kid that owns a successful corporation, so do you think that I like business?

When I look at something like this health site, I am drawn in by the product. The owner is running a business, and he draws me in by offering me something that I want. He didn’t spam me, he didn’t do any blackhat SEO… he offers something that I want. And I found out about him through word of mouth.

This is why asking what the “quickest way to make $100 a day” is a flawed perspective. If you don’t want to go the blackhat route and you want to start a BUSINESS, then you have to offer something that people want. Sometimes this is a review of a product. Sometimes this is a helpful article. Sometimes it is a membership site. And sometimes it’s an 8 oz. bag of goji berries, which I purchased today from the site that Moffatt linked me to.

Recently, I decided to do it and give it away for free on my new video site I’m doing it for this very reason – there are people that want this stuff more than anything, and I am simply giving it to them. I’m doing it for free because it will reach the maximum amount of people, and it will build me a brand. While I hope it to be a money producer at some point (although I’m not quite sure how), the FIRST step is to give people what they want.

In this business, we talk a lot about finding a “hungry crowd.” Frank Kern talks about finding people’s “cocaine.” This simply means finding what they are passionate about and what they spend money on. If you can provide them what they want, then you make easy money. Brian Owens told me once that there’s “plenty of traffic out there; you just need to step in front of it.” Likewise, there are plenty of people spending money on their passions; you just have to be the one with something to offer.

This doesn’t even mean that you have to own your own product. If you write up an EzineArticle that gives people what they want, they will check out the link back to your website. If you have a squeeze page that gives away a 10-page ebook about weight loss, they will read it if they are passionate about it. And as you do that, you build your list, you get traffic, you build exposure, you set yourself up as an authority, and you make the sales and the money.

And you did it by just giving people what they want. THAT is the only business model.

Simple Sites That Sell

Saturday, May 10th, 2008

It’s really not all that hard.

Yet, for some reason, creating simple sites that sell take an extreme amount of motivation. The more people that ask me for a step-by-step way to start making it in affiliate marketing, the more I realize how this very simple process simple boggles peoples’ minds.

So, here’s the trick, folks… this is how to make it in affiliate marketing. It really isn’t all that hard, so excuse the simpicity:

1) Make the website.
Of course, for some people (including myself), making websites isn’t very simple. For larger sites, I personally use templates that I edit in Dreamweaver. For smaller sites, I use a very simple tool from Wealthy Affiliate called Site Rubix. It’s very good for creating simple squeeze pages that sell.

2) Drive Traffic
Of course, getting traffic is the million dollar question. However, intermediate marketers know much about Google Adwords, SEO, forum marketing, social network marketing, and the like… in fact, some know more about getting traffic than they do about anything else, but they know it in theory. Once things are put into practice, the ball starts rolling. If you DON’T know this step, research each of the above pieces, as they are essential to success online.

3) Collect the Opt-in
The money is in the list… it’s cliche, and it’s true. Building up a list is the equivalent to building up a business. You can market to a list forever. I personally use Aweber and have never had any problems. It’s also very affordable and easy to use. Email marketing never was the emphasis of my business, and I have kicked myself for it. With my latest projects, collecting emails is the crux of the strategy.

It’s very easy to create niche sites that are simple and that sell affiliate products very well. In fact, it is realistic to create simple squeeze pages at a rate of one per day. The problem on the internet, however, is that few have the motivation or confidence to do so. Use this knowledge to get ahead of the game.