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Archive | August, 2019

12 Highly Effective Kindle Marketing Tips

Warning: Big, bold audacious claim coming up… If you’re selling Kindle books but not using these tips, you’re losing money. It’s that simple. Why? Because these tips work wonders to increase your sales and even build your mailing list.

12 Highly Effective Kindle Marketing Tips

Get your Kindle readers onto your mailing list. Inside your book, offer a bribe so tempting your readers will leave the book, go to your website and give you their email address in exchange for the bribe. You are now building a list of buyers with whom you have instant credibility because you are the author of a book they read.

Get your Kindle prospects onto your mailing list, too. When a prospect views your Kindle book on the Amazon website, they can read the first 10% of the book online without ever purchasing. If you offer your bribe within this first 10%, you’ll get plenty of people who never purchase your book to sign up to your list to get the bribe. And if you’re really more interested in building your list than you are in selling books, then your bribe can be the audio version of your book. Thus people can get your book’s content without ever buying it.

Use a combination of the above two tactics. A list of prospects is great, a list of paying customers is even better, and a list of each is best of all. In the beginning of your book, let them know you’re offering TWO amazing bribes – one you’ll divulge right then and there, and the other one will be revealed at the end of the book. Describe both in delectable detail. This way non-buyers still go on your list, but they have a great incentive to buy your book to get your second bribe.

Email your lists when your book is free. If you use the technique of offering your book for free for a few days when it’s new, then email your lists and let them know about it. You’ll build up goodwill and your download numbers will skyrocket, making your book much more likely to appear in search results for your topic.

Use your books to advertise your books. If you’re writing several books in a series on the same subject, then inside each of your books have a section where you tell them about your other books. Don’t get too wordy on this – say just enough to get them interested to go look at them on Amazon. Then every time you write a new book, update all of your other books to include it.

Bundle your books. Take two or more of your books and bundle them into one money-saving offer.

Beef up your author page. Put plenty of great content on your author page. The more people can read about you and especially about your topic, the more likely they are to see you as the expert that can help them. Or if you sell fiction books, consider adding a book excerpt to the author page, or reviews that do or don’t appear on your Amazon listings, etc. Little known fact: The longer you can keep your prospect on your author page, the more likely they are to buy your book. Also, add an author video. Again, people are typically more likely to buy your books after they watch your video.

Make your book really stand out. People really do judge your book by its cover. In fact it’s the very first thing a prospect sees when they land on your book’s sales page. So how does it look? Does it convey professionalism and trust? Or does it appear to be someone’s first attempt at graphic design? Is the title clear and easy to read? What about the subtitle? Do the graphics or artwork go well with your topic, or do they merely confuse the viewer? Take a look at the current bestsellers for ideas on how to make your title and cover stand out and look like a ‘real’ book – not something thrown together by a newbie.

Don’t settle for just Kindle – do paperback and audio, too. Kindle books are great, but let’s face it: “Real” books lend an air of credibility to your work. So use CreateSpace to make your book into a paperback, and ACX for audio books. Then price your paperback and audiobooks at $9.99 or better. This will make your Kindle price look like a steal by comparison.

Get your fee in book sales. If you perform some kind of service like writing, speaking, consulting, coaching and so forth, you can waive your fee in exchange for them buying a certain number of copies of your paperback or hardcover book. This works especially well if you’re in the business niche and work with companies, since they can hand your book out to their employees. And if you get several companies to make their large purchases on the same day or week, it can propel your book to the bestseller list, too.

Once you make ‘bestseller,’ be sure to tell prospects. Change your book cover to add your ‘Amazon #1 Bestseller’ status as well as adding this information in a prominent place in your book description.

Drive traffic from your Kindle books to your website. We’ve already talked about building your list, but you can do more than that. Because you can insert clickable links into your Kindle books, you can send traffic to any pages you like, including your blog, your squeeze page, your social media pages and even a sales page.

Bottom Line: Using these simple methods can greatly increase your Kindle sales, build your mailing list and help you grow your online marketing and publishing empire faster!

How an Anti-Booze Campaign from the 20s Can Increase Your Sales and Income Today

Weird but true… In the early part of the 20th century there was a massive campaign in the U.S. to abolish alcohol. Weirder still, this campaign actually won the day, and Prohibition became the 18th amendment. This made the U.S. a dry country in 1920 until the amendment was rightfully abolished in 1933.

How an Anti-Booze Campaign from the 20s Can Increase Your Sales and Income Today

So how does a movement influence people to take away one of their own rights?

With smart marketing.

First, in their campaign rhetoric the Anti-Saloon League made the issue an either/or choice.

Either you’re for children or you’re for alcohol.

Either you’re for our brave boys fighting the war, or you’re for alcohol.

As one advertisement featuring a picture of Whistler’s Mother read: “Which Gets Your Vote: Mother or The Saloon? Vote Dry.”

That’s right – either you’re for mothers or you’re for alcohol.

No middle ground. You don’t want to abolish alcohol? Then you hate your children, your boys overseas and your own mother.

A campaign like that wouldn’t fly today, would it?

😉

Today you either use the advertiser’s product or you’re not sexy, not worthy, not relevant, not important, etc.

If you don’t believe me, watch a few TV commercials and see for yourself.

Of course, you’ll want to be much more subtle when using this tactic in your own campaigns, but the tactic itself works as well as ever.

Second thing they did in their campaign was to eradicate the competition.

You’re a member of a state congress and you don’t want to abolish alcohol? Then we’ll run a smear campaign on you and get someone else elected who will vote our way.

No competition means easy victory.

Translate that to today’s marketing, and we don’t mean you should photoshop pictures of your competition doing evil deeds and post them on the front page.

Instead, you eliminate all competition by inventing your own class.

For example, instead of being one of a 100,000 weight loss coaches, you become the only sexy shape expert.

Third, they enlisted their competition in their crusade, working side-by-side with politicians who drank booze as long as those same politicians would vote against drinking.

In the world of online marketing, this translates into working with your nearest competitors as long as it increases sales.

This might be in the form of joint ventures, interviews, affiliate sales and so forth. No marketer is an island, and even those who appear to be in direct competition to your interests can often help you in your quest.

Fourth, they didn’t try to convince the masses, because they didn’t need to. All they had to do was switch just enough voters to their side to gain their 51% and win the day.

In online marketing, you don’t need to win every customer, nor should you try. Some customers will buy from you no matter what, and you should reward them but you don’t need to convince them. Some will never buy from you, and there’s no need to waste any time on those folks.

It’s the ones in the middle that you want to focus your efforts on to get them converted over to customers.

Fifth, they employed a new device that showed, not told, of the ‘horrors’ of alcohol. For a nickel viewers could see something new in the world – a motion picture version of the play, “Ten Nights in a Bar Room.” In this movie a drunken husband squanders his pay on drink, his daughter is injured while trying to bring him home, the man dies of drinking and the wife despairs of her lost family.

What a great piece of propaganda for the anti-booze movement, which helped to reinforce the belief that even one drop of alcohol could destroy not just individuals, but entire families.

Pretty crazy, right? But again there’s a lesson to be learned here: Show, don’t tell. In just a few minutes of showing how ‘evil’ alcohol was, the movement gained tremendous ground in convincing and converting voters to their side.

YouTube, anyone? 🙂

Bottom Line: The techniques that influence people don’t change, they just get more sophisticated with time. What influenced people a hundred years ago can still be translated into today’s terms to increase your own conversions.

Video Marketers: 15 Tips for Going VIRAL

Since you’re making videos anyway, why not shoot for the zenith of online video marketing and go for viral? While you can never totally predict what will go viral and what won’t, there are some tricks to make it much more likely your video is the one your viewers will forward to others. Here’s 15 proven tips to make your next video go viral:

Video Marketers: 15 Tips for Going VIRAL

Don’t use a sad ending, even if it’s true. This reminds me of a time a video was shot of a firefighter resuscitating an unconscious kitten that had been trapped in a smoky home. Viral magic, right? Absolutely. This video went viral for every outlet that left out a key piece of information – despite being resuscitated, the kitten later died of smoke inhalation. Neetzan Zimmerman, editor at Gawker, was told by his editor to include the epilogue. Result – “That video did tremendously well for practically everyone who posted it, except Gawker.”

In fact, don’t evoke any sadness if sadness is the only emotion. Videos that inspire sadness are far less likely to get shared than videos that evoke almost any other emotion. However, a video can be sad and still be uplifting: For example, a heroic person who fought a disease, lost, but left a great legacy. It’s sad that they died, but it’s uplifting that they tried so hard and left a positive mark on the world.

Do use other emotions in your video. The emotions most likely to elicit that coveted share? Surprise, anticipation, joy, anger, awe, anxiety, happiness and humor. The stronger the emotion evoked, the better. Just think of what you like to share with others – odds are it’s videos that surprise and delight, or videos that inspire anger against a common enemy. What we don’t share are videos that might make others sad, unhappy or depressed.

Make the sharer look smart. Surprisingly, data compiled by Chartbeat – a company that measures online traffic – demonstrates that people forward things they haven’t even read or watched. This is ego-driven sharing; trying to look smart by sharing smart material. So for example, if your video teaches some cutting edge techniques, it’s likely to be shared by many who simply want to look smart to their friends. Of course, whether or not anyone will actually watch it could be another matter.

Make it practical. Useful content is highly viral because people love to share “news you can use” for two reasons: It helps others AND it makes them look good.

Tell a story. Even when you think stories aren’t applicable to your topic, they probably are. Stories are universal in that they can teach anything and people are hard wired to listen to them. Tell the story well enough, and it will be passed along.

Be outrageous. Do you remember WePay’s stunt of leaving a 600 pound block of ice at the front entrance to a PayPal conference? PayPal had been freezing people out of their own accounts, and so WePay froze the words, “PayPal Freezes Your Accounts” along with cash inside the giant ice block. Great stunt that got a lot of press, but WePay really blew it – they didn’t film the delivery of the ice block or people’s reaction to it. If they had, there’s no doubt their video would have gone viral.

Be controversial. Is everyone in your field saying one thing? Then perhaps you might want to say the opposite, especially if you believe it’s true. For example, in Internet Marketing everyone says “the money is in the list,” yet an excellent case can be made for other forms of IM that don’t involve list building. The key here is to debate issues that don’t hurt feelings. For example, a ‘chunky vs smooth peanut butter’ debate, or a ‘cats vs dogs’ debate won’t ruffle anyone’s feathers, yet they can inspires a lot of interest and interaction.

Be surprising. We alluded to this earlier – surprises get passed along and talked about more than almost anything else. Remember that video of a serene, tranquil scene that suddenly turned into a screaming demon? That wasn’t just surprising, it was shocking. You don’t have to go that far – hiding ‘easter eggs’ in your videos can make them viral. For example, a hidden URL that takes the viewer to something special, or what appears to be a naked person walking past in the background, or anything that is unexpected and fun.

Another kind of surprise is the “Cracker Jack Box surprise,” a toy hidden inside every box. It’s no surprise there’s a toy in there – they tell you that on every box. What is surprising is what the toy is. If you make a lot of videos, you might plant a ‘surprise’ in every one – it could be a bit of eye candy or a link to download something useful.

Make it an “experience.” This one takes some planning, but the potential upside is nothing short of huge. Remember the Blair Witch project? The movie promos made the movie ‘real’ to the viewers, and the viewers then become a part of the movie, getting pulled in as though it were a real life event. In fact, some people actually thought it was.

Make it interactive. Remember the Subservient Chicken from Burger King? Millions of people made that chicken dance. Or how about Office Max’s viral phenomenon, Elf Yourself? Upload photos of you and your family, and suddenly you’re in your own dancing elf holiday video.

Be funny. Or cute. Or both. If you can work footage of your kitten doing something hilarious into your video, go for it. People never get enough funny or enough cute. Then there’s just plain silly – like the Old Spice commercials. Short, fun and full of surprises, these go viral every time.

Capture the attention of a taste maker. Remember the video of Yosemite Bear Mountain saying “oh my god, oh my god” about the double rainbow? That video was online for 6 months before it took off and eventually got tens of millions of views. So what happened that finally started the flood of traffic? Jimmy Kimmel tweeted about the video, and after that it was a viral phenomena.

How do you get a taste maker to share your video? First, go after small taste makers within your own niche. Second, actually make the video with them in mind. What do they love? What do they share? Incorporate that element into your video and your odds go up dramatically that they’ll share it. Third, ask them to share it. It never hurts to ask.

Add a trigger. In the video “Friday,” the trigger is of course “Friday,” and while the video was popular it was shared and watched far more on Fridays than any other day. Remember Alice Cooper’s song, School’s Out? That song was released decades ago, yet it’s still played every late May and early June on thousands of radio stations.

Capture the attention of a particular community. This can be as simple as opening your video with something like, “This video is for avid gardeners only.” Or, “This video is for avid Red Sox fans only.” Then at the end of the video, ask them to share the video with fellow avid gardeners or die hard Red Sox fans. If you’ve incorporated other viral elements, this simple step can give your video the added push it needs to begin its viral journey.

Next time someone forwards you a video, ask yourself why they did that. What was it about that video that made them want to share it? You can learn a lot simply by watching viral videos and asking yourself, “how can I apply this to my videos?”

How to Get More of Your Emails Opened

These days everyone’s inbox is flooded with emails and it’s harder and harder to get noticed, much less get opened. I’ve been doing my own testing of what works and what doesn’t, and thought you might like to see the results.

How to Get More of Your Emails Opened

Optimize your “sender” or “from” field. Using a business name does not seem to work as well as using a personal name, probably because people want to read messages from people, not from businesses. However, combining the business name with the personal name seems to work well, especially if the business name is either well recognized or implies a benefit. For example, ‘Joe Smith, ProBlogger’ would likely work well, as would ‘Jane Smith, Traffic Tips.’

Further optimize your “sender” field. I’ve experimented with using symbols before and after my name in the ‘from’ field to make my emails stand out, and it does seem to make a small difference. For example, ~Joe Smith~ tends to be opened more often than Joe Smith.

Use a great subject line. Entire products have been written on this topic alone, but here are some tips:

Use a number: “3 Ways to Get Bigger Muscles in 7 Days”

Use curiosity: “The Fried Banana method to Younger Skin”

Write as if you’re addressing a friend: “Hey” “What do you think?”, “Okay?”, “I told you he’s crackers”, “Last Sunday”, “See You Tues” “Got it?”, etc.

State a big benefit: “Look 10 Years Younger and Feel 20 Years Smarter”

Personalize the subject line. Everything else being the same, personalizing the subject line can increase your click through rate. Just don’t over do it.

Avoid spam words. You know the ones: Cash, payment, money, credit, quote, etc. These words will land you in the spam folder, and you’re not likely to get many opens there.

Optimize the preview text. Remember, the sender can often see the first line or two of text, so make it interesting, relevant, and preferably curiosity provoking.

Make it a habit to be entertaining. The more entertaining and interesting your emails are, the more likely your recipients will continue to open them.

Send twice. 8-12 hours after you send an email, send the email again to those who didn’t open your first email.

Last tip: Email often. Once a day is great. If you only send an email once in awhile, recipients will forget who you are. By being in the inbox daily, I’ve found they are more likely to recognize you and open your emails.

What Self-Made Multimillionaires Know that You Don’t (and How to Become One)

If you want true financial security, it’s not enough anymore to be a millionaire – you’ve got to be a multimillionaire. So how do you join the ranks of the 1%?

What Self-Made Multimillionaires Know that You Don't (and How to Become One)

Make a firm decision to be a multimillionaire. Your first step is making that firm decision and then reaffirming that decision several times a day. See yourself rich, feel yourself rich, be rich in your heart and mind. This is where is starts and this is the first step to realizing your dream.

You must lose the poverty thinking. No matter what you were taught about money being evil or scarce, you’ve got to let go of those beliefs once and for all. Abundance is all around you when you open yourself to it. Like attracts like, so if you’re thinking poverty, you’ll just get more poverty.

Continuously think of your multimillionaire status as real. Since you can’t hold two opposing thoughts at the same time, if you’re thinking about how little money you have then you’re not thinking about getting rich. You’ve got to feel abundance throughout your entire body, and meditation combined with visualization is a great way to achieve this state.

Stepping stones are okay. In fact, they’re great. One of the biggest obstacles new marketers face is that $10,000 a month wall. They think they should be making this amount of money from day one, but the fact is you have to start somewhere. If that means getting your first $10 day and working up, so be it. Most self-made millionaires began with one small step on their journey and then simply never stopped growing and moving ahead.

It’s not just money, it’s also something else. This might be making a difference, proving yourself, living up to your potential, making the world a better place or leaving a legacy. If your sole focus is the money, you’ll find that all the money in the world won’t make you happy. But if you have other goals beyond the money, being rich can make you happy indeed.

Get yourself some millionaires. They say you are the average of the people you hang out with, and that includes your income. So find wealthy people, whether you know them personally or read their blogs and books.

Buy time. Rich people buy time while poor people sell time. Nothing is more valuable than time, and this includes money. So anything you can outsouce to someone else, whether it’s work related or home related, should he outsourced the moment you can afford it.

Forget spending – invest instead. You know that new car you want to buy? What would happen if you took that $30,000 and instead of buying a car, you invested it for 20 years at 7% interest compounded monthly? You’d have $121,162. If you bought the car, in 20 years you would have nothing of that money.

Millionaires-in-the-making invest when they can, whether it’s in their business, their education or in their portfolio. Instead of buying a house, they purchase an apartment building that produces cash flow and tax write-offs. Instead of buying a car outright, they buy cars for their company and then deduct them because they’re used during work, and so forth.

Create multiple sources of income. The more revenue streams you have, the more money you can potentially make and the more secure you are should one of your streams dry up. This is why marketers go into more than one niche, create more than one product and look to earn money in multiple ways. Remember when Google made junk Adsense sites obsolete? Those with many different streams of income were the least affected, while those who depended solely on Adsense were devastated.

Take advantage of trends. Right now one of the hot trends is finding inexpensive products and selling them at huge mark-ups on Amazon. Eventually the competition will be severe and something else will be hot. That’s okay. If you stay flexible and keep a close eye on the marketplace, you’re ready to take advantage of trends as they happen while also building a solid, reliable business you can count on.

One last note: Self-made multimillionaires are confused by people who aren’t rich. They don’t understand why you can’t do the very same things they do – and they’re right – you can.

Perhaps the biggest obstacle to creating great wealth is the mindset. If you believe that money is limited, or evil, or that rich people are bad, then you’ll never get rich yourself.

But if you can focus on abundance, if you can create a clear picture of where you’re going, and if you can feel satisfied with what you have right here and right now, then you can achieve wealth.

Lack leads to lack. Worrying and stressing about your lack is only going to produce more lack. By all means get fired up and excited about what’s coming, but while you’re making it happen, let abundance flood your very being.

10 Sneaky Persuasion Marketing Tactics

People are nothing if not predictable. Let me give you an example: If you say to someone, “You’ve got a great job.” They will invariably tell you why it’s NOT great. But if you say to them, “You’ve got a lousy job.” They’ll tell you why it’s actually a very good job.

10 Sneaky Persuasion Marketing Tactics

Knowing the triggers you can use to activate certain behaviors in prospects can help tremendously to increase your conversions and your bottom line.

That’s why I’ve compiled 10 slightly sneaky methods to get your audience to do your bidding – or stated another way, here are 10 methods to get the public to buy your product and share your message with the world.

People crave entertainment like they crave air, and they always need more of it. A good analogy is caffeine – in the beginning, the smallest amount of caffeine can give you a nice little buzz. But the more caffeine you use, the more you need to achieve that same buzz level.

Entertainment is no different. The movies of the 40’s weren’t fast paced enough for people of the 60’s. The music of the seventies can’t compete with the music of the 80’s. The comedy of the 90’s seems tame compared to the comedy of now. Why is that? Because entertainment is constantly having to turn up the intensity to get the same reactions from the audience. People want more and more exciting stuff, and if you can build excitement and entertainment right into your product, you’ve got a hit.

Speaking of entertainment, people LOVE controversy. Build a controversial website, blog, forum, product line, podcast, YouTube channel, etc. and watch people flock to it. You’ll get free publicity everywhere as people either promote you or flog you in social media, forums and other blogs across the net.

And as a marketer, you could capitalize on both sides at the same time if you wanted to be sneaky about it. For example, you might build two websites – one on each far, far end of the political spectrum – and let them slug it out online. Anything that has what is perceived to be a polar opposite could work, such as God-fearing vs Atheist, protecting wildlife from loggers and miners, etc.

Or build controversy into your product from the start. “How To Use Tax Loopholes So You Don’t Pay Your Fair Share Of Taxes.” Is it legal? Yes. Is it fair? No. Or how about toy guns for children? Some parents love them, many hate them, and all will have something to say about it which drives more traffic to you.

This one’s really sneaky – carry on a conversation between two people about how great a product is. This could be in a forum, posts on a blog, or even if it were to “come up” during an interview about something else. The point of course is to not appear as though it’s a promotion. Yeah, I know; pretty sneaky.

People like to follow, as in “follow the leader.” What happens when one cow walks away from the herd? If the other cows suspect this cow knows something they don’t, they’ll follow. It doesn’t matter WHAT this cow might know, only that they have information that might be of use. Is the grass greener over there? Is there a secret stash of alfalfa or a salt lick over there? Let’s follow her and see!

It might seem callous to compare people to cows, but the herd mentality applies to many species including people. If someone is seen as a leader and that leader uses ABC product, then it’s going to be easy to get the followers to use ABC product as well.

As a marketer, you can use this in one of two ways – either become a leader yourself, or get your product into the hands of leaders and make sure people find out about it.

Speaking of following, people follow the confident person. They’re attracted to confidence like bees to honey. If you don’t have confidence, get it. Depending on your niche, arrogance might work as well.

Take it away. Whatever your product is, find a way to take it away from the potential buyer. Maybe they have to qualify and not everyone can. Or there’s a limited number. Or the offer is ending soon. Or maybe they’re just plain NOT supposed to have it, so you tell them NOT to buy the book but you drop hints of just how powerful it is.

People do not like to be left out. This works well in the Internet Marketing niche and it works even better in any non-marketing savvy niche.
People work harder to get something for nothing. Weird but true. What else explains someone who masters a gambling system or studies race horses just to bet? If your product promises huge returns for small effort, it will sell. Unfortunately, most products like this can’t deliver. But you can use the something-for-nothing technique in a way that is totally ethical – referrals. That is, get people to promote you through social media in exchange for something free.

Another way to ethically use something-for-nothing is to make it appear as though the very act of purchasing your product is a giant leap towards attaining their goal. You’re being honest that there is work involved, but you make the first step seem so enticing they feel they’ve practically achieved their dream simply by buying the product.

People get seduced by stories. BIG TIME. Think of the man sitting cross-legged, playing a flute while a cobra sways hypnotically to the music. This can be you hypnotizing your audience through story telling, both written and verbal.

Entire courses have been written about using storytelling in marketing. A good story creates thoughts and images in your prospect’s head that seem to originate from the prospect, not from you. And a really great story causes the audience to feel emotions and desires that come from these thoughts and images. Bottom line, get good at storytelling and then use your skill to weave mesmerizing stories throughout your marketing.

People buy dreams, not just once, but over and over again. Why is it a camper will buy every camping gadget out there? Why will a golfer purchase every golfing book written in the past 20 years? Why do Internet marketers buy online marketing products sometimes at the rate of 3 and 4 a day?

This is why a list of actual buyers is so hot – if these people bought once, they will very likely buy again and again. You can continue to create products and promote products to this list and as long as their dream remains alive, they will continue to buy. Perhaps it’s the act of purchasing that makes them feel they are one step closer to realizing their dream. Thus 5 purchases puts them 5 steps closer, and 10 purchases put them…

You can get sneaky with this one as well. Create several somewhat similar products and then let them compete with each other. It can be surprising how many customers purchase two or more.

People actually WANT to believe. So make it real. Make it believable. Help them along. Show some negative with the positive. Did you know that testimonials are far more effective if they mention something NEGATIVE? For example: “I wasn’t crazy about the title of this course and thought it was going to be just a rehash, but it turns out it was exactly what I needed. Using this information I’ve been able to ___ and ___ and achieve ___.” Make it believable.

And remember, please use these methods only for good and never for evil.

A Never-ending Supply of New Ideas

Something I come back to time and again is the importance of generating ideas, having ideas and then putting the best of those ideas to work. Every business you see and every invention you marvel at was at first someone’s idea. Every great blog post, piece of new content, information product, etc., all started as a tiny little seed inside someone’s brain…

A Never-ending Supply of New Ideas

Without the idea, nothing else flows. With the idea, anything is possible.

So how do you get great ideas? By training your brain to find them for you. Every day write down 10 new ideas. If you can’t think of 10, then write 20.

“But if I can’t come up with 10, how am I going to think of 20?”

By relaxing and having fun.

The reason 10 ideas a day is hard is because you think every idea has to be good. No. Even most of the ideas you first think are good won’t actually be… That’s okay. Just train your brain that you want 10 (or 20) new ideas every single day, and your brain will deliver. It’ll be slow at first, but it’s like a muscle – the more you exercise it, the stronger it gets.

Write down your ideas. ALWAYS write down your ideas. Even the hair-brained ones. This teaches your mind to keep finding new ones.

How Do I Know It’s a Good Idea?

Short answer – you don’t. It might sound, look, feel, taste and smell like a good idea, but until you test it out, you just don’t know.

So if you think it might be a winner, take fast action and see what happens. If it fails, you haven’t wasted much time or many resources.

New Projects are Like a Road Trip

You know that ancient saying, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.” Imagine this:

You’re starting out on a road trip. Maybe it’s your first road trip, so you’re going to make it easy – 150 miles – or kilometers – it doesn’t matter.

You’re in your car pulling onto the road, headed in the right direction.
Now quick: Tell me every curve of the road ahead, every car or truck you’re going to meet, every stop you’re going to make along the way.

What? You don’t know? You can’t see 50 miles ahead? 100 miles ahead?

Of course not.

Then why is it that when most people start a new project, they think they have to know every step they’ll take before they ever start?

You don’t. You only have to know two things: Your destination, and the first step in the right direction. That’s all you need to get started. And just as the road keeps appearing as you continue to move forward, the next step will become obvious as you complete the present step.

So start exercising your idea generating muscle, implement new ideas quickly and leverage the ones that gain traction to create your next business and life success. Then wash, rinse and repeat…

To Succeed Online, Reverse Your Strategy

Here’s how a typical Internet business works – you pick a niche, create a product and then find the audience to sell that product to. If it doesn’t sell, you do it all over again. If it does sell, you make more products to sell to those same people. Sounds logical, right?…

To Succeed Online, Reverse Your Strategy

Maybe not. Suppose – just suppose – you decide to sell NOTHING for the first two to three months of your business. Not a gosh darn thing.

Instead, what you do is focus on building and nurturing your audience. Once they know you and are confident you know what you’re talking about, then and only then do you sell them something.

“But I need to make money NOW!”

Okay, what if you had started the entire process 3 months ago? They say the best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, and the second best time is today. So bear with me for a moment while we plant a tree in your mind right now…

Let’s say you’ve taken up a new hobby. Maybe it’s golf. You’re cruising the Internet when you find this offer for a free golf book for newbies, “10 Ways to Take 10 Points Off Your Game Today.” You enter your email address and get the book.

And next thing you know, this author is sending you golfing offers on a daily basis. “BUY THIS!” “BUY THAT!” And on and on. What do you do? Maybe you buy something, maybe you don’t. But do you lose faith and trust in the person? Yes. This is just some guy who used a bait and switch on you. “Get my free book!” turns out to really mean “Let me sell you a whole lot of stuff so I can make money!”

This is how Internet marketing typically works, and the days of it being a magic bullet are long gone. Sure, the money is in the list, but if you are continually going for the sales before you even establish the relationship, you’re doing it backwards.

I say it’s time to adjust.

Second scenario: You sign up to get the free ebook, and here’s an email introducing the author. The next day, s/he sends you a great golfing tip. And the next day, and the next. Maybe the author throws in some personal golfing stories, a few golfing jokes, some golf news, etc.

Now this author feels more like your email golfing buddy and golf expert than a sales person. In fact, in 2 whole months s/he hasn’t tried to sell you a single thing. But maybe they have sent you a few videos with cool tips, so you can get to ‘know’ and like them even better. In fact, you trust this person and feel they have your best interests at heart.

They’ve built a REAL relationship with you.

Now then, what do you think is going to happen when this author starts sending you the occasional offer? Odds are you’re going to take a very serious look at buying it, because your new golfing friend/expert is recommending it. And if they’re recommending it, you know it must be really GOOD!

And as long as this author continues to send you only the best advice and best offers, you’re likely to continue buying, too.

So is it worth it to invest 2-3 months to build relationships that create super high conversions and subscribers that are loyal to you for a long, long time? Is it worth it to build such a tight bond, they never unsubscribe? Do you want to be their go-to person, the one they know and trust for advice, tips and recommendations? Or do you want to be just another sales person pitching the latest product until your subscribers flee your list?

“But 2-3 months before I make a sale??!”

Yes. I know. It takes a real commitment and investment of your time.

But let’s trying putting it into perspective: Let’s say you want to open a business in your town. You scout a location, make the deal to rent the building, get your business licenses, get the equipment you need, order the inventory, hire staff, get insurance, etc. How long would it take? And how much would it cost? And how much would you clear after all of your expenses?

What I’m talking about here is a viable way to build a six figure business in less than 12 months, with almost no out of pocket expense. To begin with, all you need is a good autoresponder. You don’t even have to put up your blog right away, because in the beginning you can do everything via email.

This is a business model you can start today. It helps if you have expertise in your subject – if not, you’ll want to start reading and learning immediately. Your topic should be one you’ve got a measure of passion for, because you’ll be writing and talking about it a great deal. You’ll need 10 or more hours a week to devote to this.

And you’ve got to be ready to sacrifice a small amount of short term income for an abundance of long term income. Long term beginning in about 2-3 months, and the potential to grow fairly large around the 6-8 month mark.

This is all about your audience. It’s all about what they want. And here’s the kicker – you know how experts tell you to research what people want before you create a product? In this case, you’re going to be so in touch with your audience, you will know exactly what they want before you ever offer it.

You’ll have people standing in line to buy your products before you even produce them. Think about that – you’ll know IN ADVANCE that your products will sell and sell well, because your audience trusts you enough to tell you what they want. Maybe it’s not in so many words, like, “Could you sell me a product about this or that,” but rather, “How do I _____?” When you keep getting the same questions, you know there is a market for a product that solves that need.

To sum up – old school method: Spend weeks creating a product nobody buys. Then do it again. Or build a list and then fry it to death.

New school method: Spend 2-3 months building an audience that LOVES you and trusts you, then create products and make recommendations based upon what they want.

Times have changed. If we, as marketers, don’t change with the times, our customers are going to leave us behind.

Make Money from Home with Amazon FBA

In the past if you wanted to sell tangible items, you went to eBay. You listed each item one-by-one, answered questions, printed out labels, packaged items and shipped them. It was a lot of work! But with Fulfillment by Amazon you can get the same results with about 10% of the effort. Here’s how it works…

Make Money from Home with Amazon FBA

You ship your items to Amazon, and then Amazon lists the products, does customer service, handles the payments, ships the products and then pays you.

Your main job is to find great products that have a high profit margin and send those to Amazon. When you sign up to be a FBA seller, you’ll see where you tell Amazon what you’re sending them and how much you want them to charge. You fill out this form each time you make a shipment. Then you let them take care of the rest.

You’re using Amazon’s traffic, their website, their sales process, their sales pages and their shipping. All you need to focus on is finding and shipping the right products.

Remember, Amazon is in the business of selling and shipping items. They’re not in the business of finding small quantities of items to sell. That’s why they need you.

So what kinds of products can you sell? Basically, anything that’s already selling well on Amazon is a possible candidate. Ideally you want to look for products that meet these criteria:

– You can purchase them for one third or less the sales price on Amazon.

– The products don’t weigh a ton – remember, you’re paying for the shipping from you to Amazon.

– Products that are selling well – in the top 100,000 is good.

So where do you find these products? Initially, you can check the discount and dollar stores near you. Take your smart phone and scan the items to bring up their Amazon listing so you can see how much they sell for and how well they’re selling.

Discount stores are places that take excess inventory from other stores and manufacturers and liquidate it to the public. At first it might take you awhile to figure out which products are viable, but guaranteed, they’re out there.

Items you might focus on initially:

– “As seen on TV” items
– lighters and fire starters
– kitchen items and cooking tools
– popular toys
– phone cases
– wallets
– water bottles
– novelties

Also, anything with a recognized brand. For example, a generic hat might not be in demand. But a Walt Disney or a Boston Red Sox hat probably is.

Each time an item sells, Amazon will send you an email letting you know. You don’t have to do anything; they’ll do the shipping and you’ll get paid. If you find an item of yours selling really well, go buy some more and send them in.

The downside? For one thing, there’s a lag time between buying and shipping a product and getting paid. And of course this lag time will depend a good deal on how fast or slow your products sell. That’s why you might want to start small and use your profits to build the business.

One more reason to start small: You eliminate the possibility of making a large mistake. New sellers on FBA sometimes purchase what seems like a bargain – such as 1,000 units of a product at $2 each – only to discover it doesn’t sell well. By keeping your inventory low at first, you can get a real feel for what works and what to avoid.

Sometimes someone will undercut you on price. For example, you have an item selling like hotcakes for $19.99, and they send a box full to Amazon and tell Amazon to sell them for $7.99. Their items will then be sold first, but when their inventory runs out the price will go back up and your items will begin selling again.

Advanced model: There are tons of items that cost almost nothing to manufacture that are then sold for $10 or more. For example, as-seen-on-TV hair gizmos or kitchen gizmos can often be manufactured for a few cents, yet they sell for $8 to $20 or more. A water bottle that costs $1 to make can be sold for $11.95. A flashlight might cost 50 cents and sell for $10, and so forth.

When you find one of these hot sellers, you can actually contact a manufacturer and have them start making them for you and shipping them directly to Amazon.

While there are marketers selling courses on how to use Amazon FBA, you can also research everything you need to know.

Here’s a link to some of the benefits of Amazon FB:

https://services.amazon.com/fulfillment-by-amazon/benefits.htm

Here’s a link where you can get started selling on Amazon:

https://services.amazon.com

Here’s where you can find seller forums on Amazon:

https://sellercentral.amazon.com/forums/

Once you get the hang of it (which shouldn’t take long) you can earn yourself a nice little side income. And you can even get the whole family involved, finding products to sell on Amazon.

Why Introverts Make the Best Marketers

First of all, let me clarify that introverts aren’t necessarily shy. They are, however, quieter than extroverts. Introverts talk plenty when they have something important to say, but they tend to stay quiet when the topic is small talk. Why? Because small talk isn’t important to them. Now, let’s say you have 2 salespeople – an extrovert and an introvert.

Why Introverts Make the Best Marketers

The extrovert is likely to talk – and talk – and talk – which is exactly what you expect from a sales person. And in the midst of all this talking, the extrovert will make sales.

But the introvert will do something the extrovert commonly fails to do – the introvert will ask questions and LISTEN to the answers.

I don’t mean they wait for the prospect to stop talking so they can begin extolling all the many benefits of the product. I mean they LISTEN. They want to know what’s keeping the prospect awake at night in relation to the problem the product solves. They want to know the prospect’s fears, desires, dreams, etc. They want to know what’s worked for the prospect, what’s failed for the prospect, and what that prospect really, truly wants so they can help this prospect get it.

And this same sales person will continue to use questions as they present their product or service, questions that direct the prospect to the desired conclusion – that this product is what they want and need.

Everything else being equal, 9 times out of 10 the introvert salesperson will outsell the extrovert – all because they asked questions and listened closely to the answers.

Introverted marketers have the same advantage as introverted sales people. They dig to discover what it is their prospects truly want. They ask questions, be it in person, over Skype, in forums, via email, etc. And they pay close attention to the answers.

These same marketers spend time researching what successful marketers are doing. They don’t assume they already have the answers – instead, they look to those who’ve succeeded and they ask how it was done and how it can be duplicated.

Now mind you, extroverts can master the skills of asking questions and listening to the answers as well as any introvert, if they try. It doesn’t come as naturally for them, but it will come with practice.

And if you look at the most successful people in the world, what you will find is they stand on the shoulders of those who came before. They asked questions, got the answers and used this knowledge to carve their place in the world.

Try it. Next time someone asks you for advice, ask them questions first. Next time someone asks about your product, ask them about their needs first. Next time someone is on a forum looking for help, ask them for more information. And then pay close attention to what they say before you make your reply.

It’s an almost unknown fact that asking the right questions and listening to the answers can be one of the highest paying skills in the world.

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