Some Simple but Advanced Strategies to Make Your Leads and Customers Buy Your Products or Services Now, and Not Later (Post 2 of 2)

 

 

In the first part of this post, I started to expose some strategies to use to make your leads and customers buy into your products or services instantly, while not waiting to buy later.

 

Let’s move on from there…

 

 

  1. Tell your audience specifically what they are going to get.

 

 

Your customers want to know exactly what they will be getting for their money.

 

Again, this is just more of the Claude Hopkins’ formula.

 

When you buy a car, you want the exact specifications, so that when you compare prices with other dealers, you know you are comparing apples to apples. 

 

When you buy a computer, you need to know the specifications:

 

How fast is it?

 

How much memory does it have?

 

How big is the screen?

 

How clear is the resolution?

 

Include all the information.

 

If the information is highly technical, such as with computers, you should include this on a separate insert, perhaps along with a beautiful and impressive photo of the computer you are selling.

 

Technical specifications make for boring ad copy, so the complete list should not be included in the advert copy, just the highlights.

 

But a complete list should be included somewhere.

 

If you are selling a seminar on tape, or a study-at-home course, you should include an impressive photo of all the materials that will be arriving in a box.

 

Your ad copy, your sales package, is like a show-and-tell presentation.

 

Provide all the information — if not all in the copy, then n separate inserts and enclosures.

 

Give your reader a lot of great material to study.

 

 

  1. Provide third-party testimony to the truth of your claims.

 

 

Anything you’re going to say as a salesman is going to be met with skepticism, no matter how compelling your story and your claims, no matter how exact the details you describe.

 

You need others — preferably famous and respected people — to confirm that what you are saying are true.

 

If you are selling a fix for muscle pain, you should have endorsements by top doctors — perhaps doctors who work for professional sports teams.

 

An endorsement of your muscle pain cure from the official team doctor of the country’s national team would be impressive.

 

But it’s also important for endorsements not to be just hype.

 

Endorsements are best if they are mini-stories — a mini-story on how the recognized expert discovered your product and then a fairly detailed description of exactly what your product achieved for him is an effective, believable testimonial.

 

The more testimonials you have, the better.

 

You can never have enough testimonials.

 

You can as well try to secure testimonials on audio and video and put them on your website.

 

 

  1. Tell your audience what bad things will happen if they fail to act now.

 

 

Your readers must be given good reasons to act now, not tomorrow.

 

People buy more out of impulse.

 

If your prospect puts your advert copy aside, thinking he or she will get to it later, your appeal is probably doomed.

 

Your reasons for them to act now, not tomorrow, must also be credible, not hype.

 

Check out the reason used in the copy below as an example:

 

The registration deadline for my Direct Response Marketer’s Boot Camp is September 23.

 

I’m limiting enrollment to just 24 people to ensure that each participant receives personal one-on-one coaching, which includes an analysis of your current direct marketing offers.

 

I am accepting enrollment applications in the order of their arrival.

 

The Boot Camps always fill up long before the deadline date.

 

So I encourage you to send me your application as soon as you possibly can.

 

To enroll immediately, you can also call me at 0800_______, or enroll online at: www.website.com.

 

 

Can you see how the reason I give for my reader to answer my letter immediately also restates some of the key benefits of the seminar?

 

In this case, it is the personal one-on-one coaching and analysis of the customer’s current direct marketing offers.

 

I might also mention that “This is the last time I’ve scheduled a Boot Camp in the area. I’m sure I’ll be back again, but maybe not for another couple of years.”

 

Suggesting to your reader that this is a “last chance” opportunity to do something or buy something is always strong.

 

“Last chance” arguments for acting now are a proven formula for success.

 

But, as with all your sales copy and presentations, the claim must be believable.

 

Avoid using shopworn phrases used by amateur writers like “Supplies are limited, so act now.”

 

Everyone knows you probably have a warehouse full of the junk.

 

Stronger reasons would be more credible, like for example:

 

 

We’re down to the last few books, and it could be many months before we go back up on press with another printing.

 

So I encourage you to get your order in today.

 

Calling our 0800______, or ordering online at www.website.com is the surest and fastest way to secure your book.

 

 

This says almost same thing, but it’s far more precise.

 

The reasons are solid.

 

And there’s no hype — just good solid facts and reasons for acting now and not waiting until tomorrow.

 

 

  1. Rephrase the most prominent benefits in the closing and in other parts of the copy

 

 

Repeating your message is crucial in all successful marketing.

 

But don’t repeat the same words all the time or you will bore your reader.

 

Look for new, fresh ways to underscore what your offer is and what the benefits are.

 

This is where thought and creativity come in.

 

You do this in your lead.

 

You back up your claims in the body of your copy, in the enclosures and in the testimonials.

 

And you summarize your offer, restating the principal benefit in the P.S. or P.S.es, and on the order form.

 

What you are offering, what you are selling, must be crystal clear in about three seconds.

 

Your reader must never need to search for what you are selling.

 

 

  1. Include a money-back guarantee

 

 

This is absolutely essential, because you are asking your reader, who may never have met you, to trust your claims and send you money.

 

And, as with everything else in your copy, you must make your guarantee believable.

 

Your reader must feel absolutely certain that this guarantee you are describing is real.

 

It must be unconditional, no questions asked.

 

The guarantee should be a stand-alone certificate, signed by the you, who is assuring them of the guarantee.

 

It should be nice and should look something like a stock certificate or a Federal Government savings bond.

 

It should look like an official document from the Federal Government Treasury.

 

It should look like it has real monetary value just by itself.

 

It should look something like money.

 

This will grab the attention of your reader and reassure your reader.

 

You might take your guarantee and assurance of satisfaction one step further, and say something like:

 

If you are ever having any problems with this product, please call me directly.

 

The direct line to my desk is _____. If you don’t reach me there, my cell phone number is _____.

 

 

And you might make this promise:

 

If you are unhappy in any way with my service, just write cancel on my invoice and mail it back to me. You’ll owe nothing for the month.

 

 

Or:

 

If you ever have a problem that we cannot fix within 24 hours, I’ll give you this month’s service for free. And you will continue to receive service free until we fix the problem to your satisfaction.

 

 

Always put the buyer in charge of the guarantee and the decision as to whether a refund is called for.

 

 

  1. Offer instant gratification.

 

 

In the 21st century, the age of high-speed Internet and overnight delivery, you must offer instant gratification.

 

People today are not patient.

 

They are not willing to “allow four-to six weeks for delivery.”

 

That’s like waiting until the next life.

 

Be sure always to include a toll-free phone number if possible (contact your service provider for this), or any other cheap or free means of instantly reaching you if need be…

 

…and also include a website order form so they can order immediately.

 

And offer an overnight delivery option.

 

So when your sales letter is mailed or your website order form is filled out, be sure you are ready to fulfill orders instantly.

 

 

There you are!

 

 

Enjoy a fruitful and seamless marketing and selling. 

 

 

Let’s discuss this post in the comments section below.  

Some Simple but Advanced Strategies to Make Your Leads and Customers Buy Your Products or Services Now, and Not Later (Post 1 of 2)

 

 

Your leads and prospects must be given good reasons to take action now, and not later.

 

People buy more out of impulse.

 

If your prospect puts your sales copy or advert aside, thinking he or she will get to it later, your appeal is probably doomed.

 

Your reasons for them to act now, and not later, must also be credible, and not hype or fluff.

 

Check out the following strategies and start putting them into use in your marketing campaigns straight away…

 

 

  1. Craft a great first sentence that creates intrigue.

 

 

Leading off your marketing or advertising message with a question is often a good way to engage your audience.  

 

Here’s a pretty good example:

 

If I can show you how you can double your income in 90 days by giving me just 30 minutes of your

time, would you like to learn more?

 

Questions can be effective lead sentences because you are immediately engaging your reader in a conversation.

 

You are not preaching at your reader.

 

You are not screaming at your reader.

 

You are not lecturing your reader.

 

You are asking your reader to give his or her opinion.

 

You are, in effect, putting your reader in charge of the conversation.

 

And you are doing so in a way that gets your reader thinking and imagining.

 

Another effective attention-getter is to start with a damaging admission.

 

Here’s an example:

 

If you’re looking for a big, prestigious ad agency to create and conduct your ad campaign, we’re not

for you.

 

But if you’re looking for an affordable ad agency that knows the local market right here in [name

your location], I encourage you to check out our website at [name your website] to pick up your free

report that will give you “10 rules for creating great ads”.

 

Our offices are modest because we don’t spend your hard-earned money on beautiful wood finishing,

marble floors, fat salaries, and a fancy address.

 

We use your money to create affordable and effective ads and marketing campaigns for you and your

business.

 

The damaging admission is a great way to start, because your honesty is disarming.

 

By immediately revealing your weakness, your reader is far more likely to believe your claims.

 

A damaging admission is attention-getting in itself.

 

Human nature is such that we all start listening intently when someone starts admitting his weaknesses, mistakes, blunders, and disasters.

 

That’s a whole lot more interesting than listening to someone prattle on about how great he or she is.

 

Or, here’s another way to start:

 

I am writing you because it’s a matter of public record and concern that you are having financial

problems, and I think I have a way to help you.”

 

This is attention-getting because you have just told your reader that you know something damaging about him or her…

 

You have inside information about your audience.

 

It’s a bit of a shocker.

 

Who would not keep reading after being hit on the head with such an opening line?

 

Yikes!

 

 

  1. Figure out all the benefits of what you are selling and promise your most important benefit first.

 

 

Notice the use of the word “benefits,” not “features.”

 

People don’t buy things or products, people buy great results.

 

People don’t buy drills; they buy the holes that drills make.

 

You’re not buying leather seats for your car; you’re buying comfort, beauty, prestige.

 

Before you start writing, list on a piece of paper all benefits (results) you can identify the product achieving for your prospects.

 

Then organize them in order of priority.

 

You can then ask others to help you organize the items (benefits) in the priority they think is right.

 

You could take a kind of mini-poll — because what you think is important might very well be wrong.

 

The larger your poll sample, the better your data will be.

 

Ask as many people as you can to help you prioritize your list of benefits.

 

If you can find a “hidden benefit,” that can further strengthen your appeal.

 

Anytime you can share a secret, or show people something “hidden,” ears will perk up.

 

A hidden benefit of aspirin is that it helps diminish the likelihood of heart attacks and strokes by thinning the blood and thereby unclogging arteries.

 

Wow, that’s a pretty good benefit.

 

We’re now supposed to take an aspirin-a-day, whether or not we have a headache.

 

And that’s great news for aspirin makers, who were on the ropes because of Tylenol.

 

A hidden benefit of the time-management program you are selling is that, not only will it make you more productive and your business more profitable, but you’ll have a lot more time for your family, for games, and for doing the things you love doing.

 

In almost every product you sell, you can find “hidden benefits” that might be even more attractive than the obvious benefit.

 

“Hidden benefits” are like “hidden treasures.”

 

They are so much more exciting to read and learn about.

 

 

  1. Describe your most important benefit in detail.

 

 

Your audience must be persuaded that your claims are true.

 

You must prove your claims.

 

You do this by going into a fair amount of detail about how and why your product will achieve the wonderful benefit you are describing.

 

You don’t do this with a lot of hype.

 

You don’t do this by using empty words like “amazing” and “incredible.”

 

You do this with facts, reasons, and interesting, little-known details.

 

The great advertising writer, Claude Hopkins, nearly a century ago, was hired by Schlitz beer to craft an ad campaign that would rescue the company.

 

Schlitz at the time was running about fifteenth in beer sales and was in deep trouble.

 

Hopkins made a trip to Wisconsin to visit the brewery.

 

He needed to learn more about how beer was made.

 

Hopkins knew that it was impossible to sell without a thorough knowledge of the product being sold.

 

The folks at Schlitz showed Hopkins the entire brewing process, step by step.

 

They showed him how deep they had drilled their wells to find the purest water.

 

They showed him the glass-enclosed rooms that kept the water pure, the kind of yeast they used and where they got it.

 

They showed Hopkins the place where the bottles were cleaned, re-cleaned, and sanitized a dozen times.

 

“My God,” Hopkins said, “Why don’t you tell people in your advertising about all these steps you are taking to brew your beer?”

 

“But”, answered the Schlitz people, “All companies brew their beer about the same way.”

 

“Yes,” Hopkins countered, “but the first one to tell the public about this process will gain a big advantage.”

 

Hopkins then launched an ad campaign for Schlitz that described in detail the company’s step-by-step brewing process for making the beer.

 

Within six months, Schlitz jumped to the #1 selling beer.

 

Here’s the text of the legendary Hopkins print ad:

 

 

Perfection of 50 Years

 

 

Back of each glass of Schlitz beer, there is an experience of 50 years.

 

In 1848, in a hut, Joseph Schlitz began brewing.

 

Not like Schlitz beer of today; but it was honest.

 

It was the best beer America had ever brewed.

 

This great brewer today has new methods.

 

A half-century has taught us perfection.

 

But our principles are 50 years old, our aims are unaltered.

 

Schlitz beer is still brewed without regard to expense, according to the best that we know.

 

We send experts to Bohemia to select the best hops in the world.

 

An owner of the business selects the barley, and buys only the best that grows.

 

A partner in our concern supervises every stage of the brewing.

 

Cleanliness is not carried to greater extremes in any kitchen than here.

 

Purity is made imperative.

 

All beer is cooled in plate-glass rooms, in filtered air.

 

The beer is filtered.

 

Then it is sterilized, after being bottled and sealed.

 

We age our beer for months in refrigerating rooms before it goes out.

 

Otherwise Schlitz beer would cause biliousness, as common beer does.

 

Ask for beer, and you get the beer that best suits your dealer.

 

He may care more for his profit than your health.

 

Ask for Schlitz, and you get the best beer the world ever knew.

 

 

Notice that Hopkins used no empty “hype” words.

 

His claims are backed up by facts, details, and narrative.

 

If anything, Hopkins’ tone is understated, and this contributes to the ad’s believability.

 

Hopkins proved with this legendary ad that there are no boring subjects, just boring writers.

 

“Who wants to hear a story about the step-by-step brewing process of making beer?” one might wonder.

 

Turns out, those who love beer are fascinated by the subject.

 

They want to know exactly and precisely why they should pick this beer above all others.

 

This great copywriter, Claude Hopkins, the father of modern advertising, understood this law of marketing and went on to turn the brewing process into an exciting story, full of detail — and of riveting interest to beer lovers.

 

Follow the Hopkins formula in all your sales copy and ad writing.

 

You will do very well.

 

 

Let’s continue the discussion in the second part of this post. 

 

 

Share your comments to this post in the comments section below.   

Three Essential Rules to Help You Step Up Your Marketing Game

 

 

The difference between the results the A-Level marketers and the average marketers get from their marketing is in how they do things.

 

How they carry out their marketing… 

 

How they attract prospects, leads, and customers…

 

…and how they seek to monetize them.

 

If you want to start getting regular and consistent sales and conversions just like the A-List marketers, you might want to start inculcating the following rules in your marketing right away…

 

 

Rule #1

Frequent contact is essential.

 

I think the question most often asked by business owners is this: “Won’t my customers get sick of me if I keep contacting them all the time — with my monthly newsletter, with email, with direct mail, with “Thank Yous”, with free gifts, with holiday cards, etc.?”

 

My answer?

 

An emphatic, “NO! Not if what you have to say is interesting and of interest to your customer.”

 

People never get sick of learning something new.

 

This is marketing by educating.

 

The need for frequent regular contact is also Marketing 101.

 

It’s absolutely essential.

 

Does Nike stop running ads because we’ve already seen a Nike ad this month?

 

No.

 

Nike pounds our brain relentlessly, every day.

 

So do all the big consumer brands — Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Dell.

 

Professional marketers know that you must see an ad at least 20 times before it makes any impression on your brain.

 

We know that it’s hard work to carve out a niche in someone’s brain.

 

McDonald’s knows that the minute it pulls its ads off the air, fewer people come into their restaurants.

 

If McDonald’s stopped advertising for a year and if a competitor advertised like McDonald’s, McDonald’s would lose much of its market share to such competitor. 

 

It’s hard to imagine, but McDonald’s would pretty well disappear as a brand in people’s minds if it were to stop advertising.

 

Howard Johnson’s was the McDonald’s of its day in the 1950s and 1960s.

 

Everyone used to go to Howard Johnson’s for a burger and a shake.

 

And, frankly, the food and shakes were a whole lot better than McDonald’s.

 

But McDonald’s is a marketing machine.

 

So Howard Johnson’s fell off the pace.

 

Relentless, mind-pounding repetition is the key to effective marketing.

 

Don’t assume your customers know who you are just because they received a mailing, an email, or bought from you once.

 

But your marketing must always be interesting to grab and hold the attention of your audience.

 

That’s where your brainpower must come in.

 

 

Rule #2

If it’s working, keep doing it. Don’t change.

 

With all your marketing, you’ll be testing and tracking your results.

 

You’ll be testing sources, lists, advertising media, headlines, offers, benefits, and other aspects of your message along with graphics and packaging.

 

So here’s the key…

 

When you find something that’s working for you, keeping doing it over and over again…

 

It’s amazing how many marketers and business owners just mail once, even if the mailing is an astonishing success.

 

If your special report, your Consumer Protection Guide, your newsletter, your postcard, your direct mail letter, or your direct response ad is working, keep doing it for God’s sake!

 

If you find something that works, keep doing it until it stops working.

 

Meanwhile, test other messages and approaches.

 

Soon you’ll have an entire arsenal of letters you can mail to your customers and prospects.

 

On the other hand, if your marketing is not working, if it’s not bringing in immediate business, stop doing it immediately and try something else.

 

Don’t believe those who tell you to run an ad that gets no response over and over again.

 

Don’t believe those who tell you it often takes a long time for an ad to work.  

 

That’s the Madison Avenue approach.

 

But you and I – as small businesses as we are – don’t have enough money to conduct saturation advertising and hope that your ads work someday.

 

Your ads must work now, not later.

 

If your ads, your direct mail, or your Internet marketing campaigns aren’t bringing in instant business, stop doing what you are doing immediately; and find a message, a product, an offer and an advertising tool that does bring in instant leads and customers.

 

If you can’t hit your target without always getting it all wrong, don’t keep doing what you are doing.

 

Stop.

 

Change your technique.

 

Change your approach.

 

Try something else.

 

Find a direct marketing expert to help you analyze what you are doing wrong.

 

 

Rule #3

If you try it and it doesn’t work, you’re doing it wrong.

 

Often I hear people say, “direct mail marketing does not work,” or “Internet marketing does not work for me,” or “advertising on Facebook or Google does not work.”

 

To say these methods don’t work just means you’re doing something wrong.

 

Don’t tell me direct mail marketing doesn’t work.

 

It clearly works, or you and I would not see so much of it in our email inbox and mailboxes.

 

If Internet marketing did not work, if TV ads did not work, if radio ads did not work, if postcards and newsletters did not work, if the Facebook ads or Google ads did not work, people would stop using these media.

 

All these media and methods work.

 

To say they don’t work is like saying planes don’t work because some crash.

 

All these marketing media and methods are powerful tools.

 

But you must use the tools correctly.

 

You must learn how to use the tools.

 

You must learn what the tools are supposed to do and what situations and circumstances fit the tools you select.

 

Please never tell me these tools don’t work.

 

They clearly do work.

 

Make it your mission to learn how to use them correctly. 

 

 

 

Let’s discuss the new knowledge you learned from this post in the comments section below.

Here’s How to Construct an Attention-Getting GUARANTEE STATEMENT That Forms a Memorable TOUCHSTONE for Your Business

 

 

You have to raise the level of your guarantee.

 

It’s no longer sufficient simply to include a money-back guarantee with your offers.

 

There is nothing remarkable about a money-back guarantee, since all marketers include it.

 

The challenge is showing your audience that your guarantee means something, that it’s real.

 

The statement of Chris Farley line from the movie “Tommy Boy”, gives more insight into this…wherein he says: “Look, if you want me to take a dump in a box and mark it guaranteed, I will.”

 

That’s about how much credence your audience place in the word “guaranteed” today.

 

How do you make your guarantee mean something?

 

How do you make your audience pay attention to your guarantee?

 

What’s required today is a super-charged guarantee — a frank guarantee.

 

Nordstrom’s guarantee – Nordstrom Stores – is one of the most famous.

 

Nordstrom promises that you can return a Nordstrom product anytime and get a full refund, no matter how long you’ve had it, no matter how much you’ve worn it.

 

There’s a story (probably an urban legend) about a guy who brought in a set of tires to Nordstrom, asking for a refund.

 

Nordstrom gave the refund even though Nordstrom has never sold tires.

 

Though this story is probably myth, the fact that this story is so well-known just underscores the legendary fame the Nordstrom guarantee has achieved.

 

Everyone knows about the Nordstrom eye-popping guarantee.

 

The Nordstrom guarantee is so famous that it’s now part of the Nordstrom brand.

 

This extraordinary guarantee is what people think of when they think of Nordstrom.

 

The Nordstrom guarantee communicates far more than just that the purchase is “risk-free” to the customer.

 

This super-charged guarantee communicates that Nordstrom has confidence in the quality of its merchandise, and also that Nordstrom trusts its customers to treat Nordstrom fairly.

 

A relationship of trust is established.

 

Nordstrom is telling customers that the store is staking its entire business on the quality of its products and on customer satisfaction.

 

In a sense, Nordstrom has built its business and reputation on the attention-getting strength of its guarantee.

 

And what a brilliant marketing strategy this is, because without this memorable guarantee, Nordstrom would not stand out in people’s minds as any different from a dozen other department stores that offer the same merchandise.

 

The stunning Nordstrom guarantee is what makes Nordstrom different.

 

Ben Hart once said:

 

I know an accountant who promises his customers that if they ever feel he has failed to save them at least double the cost of his fee on their income taxes versus what they would have paid if they had done their own taxes, he will refund his entire fee.

 

This accountant has no shortage of clients.

 

As far as I know, he has never been asked for a refund.

 

One of the biggest challenges we sales letter writers have is to get our audience to read our entire letter — or to hear the entire pitch.

 

One way to generate interest in your letter is to build your letter around a stunning guarantee that might read like this:

 

This Letter Is Guaranteed

 

You might wonder: “How can a letter be guaranteed?”

 

It’s free anyway!

 

I don’t believe this guarantee has ever been made before.

 

So here’s how it works:

 

If you read my entire letter and if you feel, at the end, that it’s been a waste of your time, just let me know by writing a note on the back of this certificate and I will send you $20, or donate $40 to a charitable cause, whichever you prefer.

 

I am making this guarantee because I know you are very busy running your shoe making business.

 

I also know that I am asking you to take a few minutes of your valuable time to consider what the program I’ve outlined here can do to help improve the marketing of your shoe making business.

 

Since I’m sending out about 400 of these invitations, this potentially puts me at risk for having to pay out $16,000.

 

But I’m not overly concerned because I’m confident you’ll agree that my letter was well worth reading, and because I trust that you have integrity and honor.

 

I also know that you are a fellow entrepreneur who almost certainly wants to improve the marketing side of your business.

 

Sincerely,

Taofeeq Azeez

 

 

Sure, there will be a few jokers out there who will request the $20.

 

But most people (98 percent or more) truly are people of honor and integrity.

 

Nordstrom would have gone out of business long ago if the average consumer had any interest in cheating the store.

 

Contrary to the impression we might have, the wonderful truth is that the vast majority of people are decent honest hardworking folks who won’t take advantage of you and won’t try to cash in on your super-charged guarantee . . . unless you really are putting out a shoddy product.

 

 

The Touchstone (The Me Meme)

 

 

The Touchstone for selling yourself takes on a slightly different form.

 

If you’re selling yourself as a consultant, a verbal Touchstone will work as it would for any other product.

 

If you are the product in the professional world, you can be a little more overt about your offer, and you can get away with it.

 

Outside of the business world, your approach needs to be a bit less direct.

 

For whatever reason, we need to communicate our offers a little more subtly when it comes to personal interaction.

 

You can be up front about the nature of your offer, but you probably won’t get away with throwing it in someone’s face – depending on the context, of course.

 

Your Touchstone is a mimetic one.

 

When people first meet you, various pieces of information come together to form a mimetic expression of one idea: you.

 

When I first meet someone I’m aware that my appearance, my posture, my facial expression, my grooming, my clothes, the first words out of my mouth…

 

All of these things come together to form the Me meme.

 

Depending on what you want, your Me Meme may or may not serve your purpose.

 

If your intention is to find a hot date, you may want to adjust your Me Meme from the “trust me as your salesman” Me Meme.

 

How you adjust these elements is a totally subjective thing.

 

The following elements might make up the ME Meme under ideal conditions:

+ Clean, pressed, fashionable clothes

+ Impeccable grooming

+ Friendly smile

+ Confident posture

+ Outgoing and kind nature

+ My spirit shining through

+ First words: Something disarming and friendly

 

 

I found the following Touchstones on some products:

 

Strong for maximum protection, sensitive for maximum pleasure…” (Gold Circle latex condoms)

 

As smooth as silk, with a soft natural feel…” (Kiss latex condoms)

 

You invest some money, we give you beautiful skin…” (Guthy-Renker superb skin care line)

 

 

Your Touchstone could be anything, but you would be wise to ask yourself: “is it serving my purpose?”

 

If your Touchstone tells people you are a stuck-up snob who only cares about appearance, and secretly you want to meet some very down-to-earth genuine people, then perhaps it’s not serving your purpose as well as it could.

 

On the flip-side of this, you should be careful about how you allow people’s Touchstones to affect your judgment of them.

 

The image most people are projecting to the world is not a genuine one.

 

At the same time, regardless of their intentions, the Touchstone they have chosen is theirs, and it will give some clues about what they’re all about.

 

That is, no matter what the reason, if someone always looks like a wreck, it might be indicative of greater levels of disorder in his or her life.

 

Then again, the best-groomed guy in the world could end up being like a wreck through your life!

 

 

Let’s discuss the new lessons you’ve learned here in the comments section below.

How to Use POP-UPs and BANNER ADs to Automate Your Marketing and Acquire More Business Leads and Customers

 

 

The pop-ups and banner ads are a great tool you need to create your automatic, robotic, hands-free marketing system that runs itself.

 

And it’s very low-tech.

 

There’s practically no technology whatsoever to learn.

 

You should include a banner ad system in all your advertising and marketing.

 

The banner ad is part of your sales presentation. 

 

To get the most out of this system, you might not want to display it as sales pitch…

 

…you might want to rather display it as unbiased information for your audience.

 

Ads you run via a banner could read like this:

 

Sample realtor ad:

 

The Seven Most Common Mistakes

People Make When Buying a Home

Click here to download your free

“Buyer’s Guide”

 

Sample financial planner ad:

 

The Five Worst Financial

Planning Mistakes

Go here to get your free “Step-

By-Step Guide to Successful

Financial Planning”

 

Sample pest control company ad:

 

The Seven Disease-Carrying Pests

That Are Probably Infesting

Your Home

Call our support desk on 080__________

to get your free

“Consumer Survival Guide”

 

 

Sample home builder ad:

 

The 11 Tricks Some Unethical

Home Builders Use To Steal Your Money

Go here to get your free

“Consumer Protection Guide”

 

 

Sample ad for plastic surgeon:

 

Don’t Have Plastic Surgery

until You’ve Read This

Consumer Protection Report!

Click here to download your free

“Consumer Awareness Guide”

 

 

Sample ad for law firm:

 

The Nine Most Common Mistakes

People Make When Hiring a Lawyer

Call our support desk on 080____________

to get your free

“Consumer Awareness Guide”

 

 

Sample ad for other service company:

 

How To Hire An Ethical

………………………….

Go here to get your free

“Buyer’s Guide”

 

 

Notice the pattern of these ads.

 

The headlines either tap into an existing fear or create a fear or anxiety (a fear they did not know they should have before now).

 

This fear compels readers of these headlines to click the download link for their free “Consumer Protection Guide” or special report to find out what mistakes to avoid, what the most common scams are in the industry, or the threats consumers face if they don’t act now.

 

You can as well include the call line of your sales representative…which prospects can call to get their free report or guide, etc.

 

Remember, “Fear” is the #1 motivator triggering people to buy.

 

In the words of the great advertising pioneer, David Ogilvy, “you must first show the fire before you try to sell fire extinguishers.”

 

You must outline the threat, the danger, the crisis, before you sell a solution to the problem.

 

And you do this not with a lot of empty hype words that so many advertisers use.

 

You do this with facts and proof.

 

That’s why it is so powerful to offer a free “Consumer Protection Guide” or a free “Consumer’s Research Report” on the subject of interest to your prospect.

 

Because the ad shows them how to get a guide or report for free – contrary to what you might expect, people are more likely to call or click the link because they aren’t going to be subjected to a high-pressure pitch from a desperate salesman.

 

 

But how do you know you are reaching those who need this service?

 

 

Because you advertise in places where you know people are looking who want this service, such as the related display ads network, relevant social media networks, or section of newspapers where all your competitors are running their ads.

 

In fact, a great way to figure out where to run your ads is to find out where your competitors are advertising.

 

For certain kinds of businesses, don’t overlook classified ads.

 

As with all direct marketing, you will always want to start small with each advertising source and test.

 

You want to test ads and test sources.

 

Your ad might be great, but if it’s appearing in the wrong place, it won’t work.

 

Conversely, the ad won’t work anywhere if it’s no good.

 

Follow the copy guidelines in the ads above and you’ll be on the right track.

 

But it will be up to you to find the right places to run your ads.

 

The surest approach is to rely on the research your competitors have already done for you.

 

Run your ads where they are running their ads.

 

They run ads in those places because they’ve found they work.

 

As you get rolling, you will think of other places to test-run your ads.

 

But don’t be a pioneer yet.

 

Travel down the well-beaten paths your competitors have already cut for you.

 

Here’s the beauty of these ads.

 

They are short and therefore will cost you very little money when you run them in the related display ad network (online), in your local newspaper, in classified ads, or in magazines.

 

You can also put these ads on fliers you distribute, on your business card, and, of course, on your website, prominently displayed.

 

These ads are attention-getting.

 

These ads don’t look like other ads in the display ad networks.

 

They look almost like consumer protection public service ads, published to alert consumers to costly and damaging mistakes people almost always make if they don’t know about them.

 

People then call or click to get your free report or guide.

 

Your report can give many of the highlights of the free consumer protection guide you are offering, such as “how to avoid the common mistakes people make when hiring a lawyer” (if you are in the law firm business).

 

In addition, your report or guide tells your listener what your company does.

 

You deliver your offer – let’s say a free assessment of the pest situation in the prospect’s home (if you’re a pest control company). 

 

If your prospect found your ad in the display ad network, chances are he or she wants the service you are offering right now.

 

So it’s fine for your report or guide to make your basic sales pitch.

 

A free assessment, a free analysis, a free consultation, 50 percent off for first-time customers, etc., are potent offers to bring in new buyers.

 

These free reports or guides are great places for your testimonials, listings of your impressive clients and track-record of achievements.

 

But be careful not to spend much time talking about you or your business.

 

Ninety percent of what you say must be about what you will do for your prospect.

 

Stress benefits to the prospect, and the dangers of not acting now.

 

It’s fine if your free report or guide is long, if what you have to say is interesting.

 

In advertising, the longer your prospect listens to you, the better chance you have for the sale.

 

So your report or guide can be a 10 pages PDF, or a 10 minutes audio or video, or longer, if what you have to say is fascinating.

 

Especially important is to stress your super-charged guarantee and your irresistible offer for first-time customers that no intelligent person looking for such a service can possibly refuse.

 

“Free trial” and “free for first-time buyers” is always a powerful offer.

 

At any moment, the prospect can click out of the sales pitch and order the free Consumer Protection Guide you’ve offered, and, hopefully, also the free consultation or analysis or free initial service you are also offering.

 

The prospect can make a call directly to you or a live sales person if it’s during business hours or leave a message if you include a way for them to reach you or your business.

 

You now have a hot prospect.

 

You must now follow-up immediately, or your prospect will find the service somewhere else.

 

This is absolutely essential because you are providing exactly the service he or she is clearly searching for.

 

This is money hanging on a tree that is simply waiting to be collected.

 

And you did no work to get this hot prospect.

 

Once the system is set up, it works on its own, automatically and hands-free.

 

It works while you sleep.

 

It works while you are on vacation.

 

Your banner ad is your unpaid sales force that never gets tired, never gets discouraged, never calls in sick, and works for you all the time, 24/7.

 

You just need to be ready to handle all the business that will pour in.

 

In addition, you can have any number of banner ads tailored for different products and services you might be offering.

 

And you can quickly and easily test different messages and advertising media with campaigns running side-by-side.

 

It’s even great if your report or guide can be an audio or a video.

 

An actual voice or visual is so much more powerful than print.

 

A bond starts to form as the prospect hears more of what you have to say.

 

People want to do business with people, not with a printed page.

 

People want a relationship with those they do business with.

 

You have a much greater chance of achieving this with a detailed, recorded presentation in your own voice or visual.

 

You are, in effect, conducting a seminar for your listeners.

 

You are marketing by providing information.

 

You are marketing by educating.

 

The recorded message, of the type I am describing, is the next best thing to standing in someone’s living room and having a one-on-one conversation.

 

But you are doing it automatically and robotically, while you are sleeping, while you are playing tennis, while you are watching the football game or playing with your kids.

 

You’ll never need to make your introductory sales pitch again.

 

Instead, you’ll just send prospects to your free report or guide to hear your sales presentation . . . over and over and over again.

 

This, in fact, is how you want all your marketing to function.

 

And it can — if you set up the system correctly.

 

Depending on the product or service you are offering, you might test whether to include in your ad a link to a website address leading your reader to a landing page that requires him or her to fill out a form to receive your free report or guide…although, this isn’t a general rule.

 

Certain people want the service now.

 

People who want service now use the phone.

 

People surfing the Internet or even the social media are more nibblers.

 

They are researching the subject but are usually not in need of instant emergency service.

 

Some people want service now.

 

But if you are running banner ads on websites related to your product or service, you’ll want your banner ad to link to your site, most likely a landing page.

 

You would then display your free report or guide there, on your site, on the landing page, perhaps throughout your site.

 

As with all marketing tools, you must use the tool that fits the task at hand.

 

A saw is a great tool, but not for hammering nails.

 

The folks who are calling your business hotline from the ad are usually people who want the service now.

 

When someone picks up the phone and calls, they are serious.

 

The phone is a “need it now” tool.

 

The Internet is used by researchers, dabblers, nibblers.

 

They are thinking about it and will get back to us when they are ready.

 

With all marketing, but especially with the Internet, your job is to find a way to capture email address of those who are interested in what you are doing.

 

And then develop a program that will keep you and your service in front of that person so that when the prospect is ready, the prospect thinks of you first.

 

Of course, these are general observations based on my own experience.

 

There are differing patterns of response depending on the product you are selling.

 

As with all your marketing media and tools, you must always TEST, TEST, TEST.

 

To regularly achieve effective and efficient success with all your business and marketing efforts, you won’t want to underestimate the importance of testing. 

 

 

Let’s discuss the new lessons you’ve learned from this topic in the comments section below.

The Pareto Principle: Why You Should Focus 80% of Your Marketing Efforts on ONLY 10% To 20% of Your Customers

 

 

It’s amazing how few businesses pay much attention at all to their existing customers – those who have actually bought something.

 

Some businesses don’t even keep a customer list!

 

But it’s the first sale that’s the toughest.

 

It’s much easier to make a sale to someone who has bought from you before than to someone who has never bought from you, and might never have heard of you.

 

The reasons are many and should be obvious.

 

Your customers bought from you because they like what you are selling.

 

They want what you are selling.

 

They need what you are selling.

 

Your customers would much rather continue to do business and buy from someone they know.

 

They would prefer not to buy from a stranger.

 

If your product is any good, selling your customers more of what you know they like should be like shooting fish in a barrel.

 

For these reasons, it’s far more costly to find a new customer that to keep an old one.

 

Your customers should be hearing from you all the time: a postal mailing once a month, an email communication at least once a week.

 

And not every communication should be a sales pitch.

 

Just give your customers a steady stream of valuable useful information.

 

If you’re selling tires, send your customers tips on how to stay safe on the road by rotating tires, maintaining the correct air pressure, and how to measure the tread.

 

Send objective information on what makes a safe tire.

 

With your communications, your goal is to build a relationship with your customers…because when you have a trusted relationship, you have no competition.

 

You will have customers who will faithfully buy from you.

 

 

Mining Gold from Your Customer List

 

 

You’ve heard about the Pareto “80/20 Rule”.

 

It’s called the Law of the Vital Few, or the Principle of Factor Sparsity.

 

The Rule says, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.

 

It’s such an important concept.

 

The “80/20 Rule” is part of Marketing 101.

 

The rule goes like this:

 

  • 80% of sales come from 20% of customers.

 

  • 80% of commissions are earned by 20% of salespeople.

 

  • 80% of the wealth in any community is produced by 20% of the people.

 

  • 80% of sales are generated by 20% of the businesses.

 

  • 80% of your income is produced by 20% of your activities.

 

  • 80% of your revenue is generated by 20% of your clients.

 

  • 80% of your donations are made by 20% of the donors.

 

 

The reason for this is fairly obvious.

 

If you observe human behavior, you’ll immediately notice that about 20 percent of the population is pulling the wagon – that is, doing about 80 percent of the work and generating 80 percent of the wealth.

 

Everyone else is riding the wagon, hoping someone else will pull them along.

 

The majority of people don’t have the guts or energy to start their own business.

 

Most people would rather ride along on someone else’s wagon, happy enough in their 9 to 5 job and collecting a regular paycheck every month, while doing as little as possible to earn it.

 

In the charitable arena, the rule is the same.

 

About 20 percent of the populations are givers.

 

The rest of the populations are takers.

 

Actually, the “80/20 Rule” is more like the “90/10 Rule” if we were to really analyze the facts carefully.

 

The 90/10 Principle popularized by Stephen Covey, the amazing author of “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” states that, 10% of life is made up of what happens to you, and 90% of life is decided by how you react.

 

Following this rule, if you were to break down the population even more precisely, you would see that the top 10 percent are the true producers and givers – the true wagon-pullers.

 

There’s a middle 60 percent who are happy to ride in the wagon most of the time, but will help out once in a while if they are shamed into it.

 

And then there’s the bottom 30 percent of the population who must be dragged behind the wagon in the dirt.

 

These are dead weights that actually hinder progress.

 

So now, let’s rename our Rule of Life the “30/60/10 Rule”, and it goes like:

 

  • 30% are dead weight you are pulling along in the dirt.

 

  • 60% are riding in the wagon, not doing much, but not hindering your progress either.

 

  • 10% are doing 90% of the pulling.

 

 

The #1 mistake businesses make is to focus too little attention on the 10 percent of customers who are providing 90 percent of your income – and too much attention on the rest who aren’t profitable for you at all, and, most likely, are costing you money.

 

The tendency is to take your best customers for granted.

 

“We don’t have to worry about these customers because they love us already,” is the thought process at work here.

 

We get lazy with these customers because we know these customers are profitable.  

 

We then invest enormous effort and resources to try to make our money-losing customers profitable.

 

We continue to send these money-losers newsletters and mailings.

 

We continue to coax, cajole, and bribe in the hope that these people will, someday, become interested in what we are doing.

 

We make the dead-weight money-losers the focus of our marketing.

 

What a catastrophic marketing mistake this is!

 

One of the quickest, easiest ways to increase your profitability is immediately to cut loose the 30 percent of the dead weight, the people (customers and employees) who are costing you money, and will never be profitable no matter what you do.

 

Just get rid of them and at least make your wagon lighter to pull.

 

Your next step is to give your top 10 percent or 20 percent a lot more tender loving care and to offer more and more of whatever it is that makes these gold-plated customers love you so much.

 

If they like chocolate, keep offering them bigger and bigger chocolates.

 

Don’t think, “He’s already had his chocolates for the month, so no need to offer him another chocolate until next month.”

 

Keep feeding your gold-plated top 10 percent of your customers more and more of what you know they love.

 

And treat them as the dear and loyal friends they are to you and your business – because you can’t survive and prosper without them.

 

But, why is it that most of us are so obsessed with trying to win over the bottom 30 percent?

 

Why is it that we are more concerned with trying to turn the deadweight we’re dragging along in the dirt into wagon-pullers?

 

I think it’s because entrepreneurs are also evangelists at heart.

 

We are so excited about whatever it is we are doing and the service we are offering that we just can’t believe most people could not care less about what we are doing.

 

We try to win them over.

 

We try even harder to win back our “lost sheep” – our former customers who left us.

 

We just can’t believe they left us even after all the great service we provided.

 

It’s depressing to lose a customer.

 

Rejection is always depressing.

 

So we spend a lot of money and effort trying to get these “lost sheep” and “prodigal children” back into the fold.

 

The reality is you will never turn a wagon-rider into a wagon-puller.

 

And you will never turn dead weight into wagon-riders, much less into wagon-pullers.

 

We are genetically wired to be who we are.

 

We were that way at birth.

 

You are far better off cutting loose the dead weight immediately.

 

In fact, you would be better off getting rid of most of your wagon riders.

 

They aren’t much good to you either.

 

Keep a few of the wagon riders around who show some potential of being wagon-pullers.

 

And then focus 80 percent of your efforts on your top 20 percent – your very best customers and clients.

 

Of course, you will always need to prospect for more customers.

 

You always need to find new prospects to pour into the top of your marketing funnel.

 

But you must do this knowing that only 20 percent (or less) of your new customers will ever be worth much to your business.

 

Can you see how clearly understanding this principle can affect, even dramatically change your marketing approach – and might even change your entire business model?

 

With this principle in mind, your job is not to work to turn your dead weight and wagon-riders into wagon-pullers for you, but to develop a system that will identify your wagon-pullers as quickly as possible so you can focus your attention on them.

 

Identify, cultivate, and harvest your wheat.

 

Quickly identify and burn the chaff.

 

And you will vastly increase your profitability.  

 

 

Let me know what new thing you learned from this topic in the comments section below.

How to Effectively and Efficiently Use the TRADITIONAL ADVERTISING MEDIA to Acquire More Leads and Customers to Your Business

 

 

You no longer need to buy large expensive display ads in newspapers, magazines, billboards, on the TV, radio, or in sponsoring events.

 

All you need to do is drive people to call your business hotline or to go to your website to order and download their free special report, free book, free guide – or whatever it is you are offering for free.

 

Your sales representative or website then does all the selling.

 

You can take as much time you need to sell your prospect.

 

Your website can be as extensive as necessary.

 

Once you have an email address, a postal address, and a phone number, you can take days, weeks, months, or even years to inform, educate, coax, and cajole your prospect automatically and robotically with the marketing system you’ve set up on your website, email marketing system, or mailing system.

 

Your prospects will be poured into the top of your marketing funnel, which is designed to sift, sort, and categorize your prospects and customers.

 

Your prospects (leads) will then start receiving your auto-response emails, your monthly newsletter, invitations to events, and whatever else you can think up.

 

The possibilities are endless.

 

But the beauty is, once your lead enters the top of your marketing funnel, it costs you almost nothing to keep putting him or her through your education-based marketing program.

 

You are no longer limited to 60 seconds (radio or TV ad) to make your entire sales pitch and close a sale.

 

You are not limited by the size of a page in a newspaper or magazine.

 

You are not limited by the space and style formats offered by event owners.

 

You don’t need to spend huge sums of money to make a long infomercial (TV or video ad).

 

And you are no longer limited by your meager advertising budget…because you no longer need a big advertising budget to do any of this kind of precision, laser-like, automated target marketing.

 

All you need are small, even tiny, print ads with headlines compelling enough to cause people to call your business hotline, or go to your website, to get their free special report, free guide, or free book.

 

Radio can be cheap advertising tool also.

 

Radio can be very cost-effective for the right products and services – those that will appeal to a broad consumer audience, not so much to a narrow, highly targeted audience.

 

Radio is more of a broadcast tool, designed to reach a wide audience.

 

“Narrow-casting” tools works best.

 

I prefer to advertise exactly where my prospects (and no one else) are looking.

 

If I want to catch fish, I go to where the fish are.

 

And I go to where the fish are concentrated most densely.

 

I want to go fishing in a barrel packed with fish, not the ocean.

 

I definitely don’t want to fish in the desert.

 

Direct mail and the Internet are “narrow-casting” marketing tools.

 

So are the classified ads because of the way they are organized.

 

Advertising in specialty magazines designed exactly for the audience you are trying to reach is also a good bet.

 

If you’re selling guitars, try advertising in a guitar magazine with one of your short banner ads with a headline that says something like “11 Things You Must Know Before You Buy A Guitar”.

 

If you’re selling examination solutions and strategies to assimilate well, run the same kind of ad in one or more publications of popular schools and institutions of learning.

 

If you offer insurance or pension programs aimed at some working class citizens, their trade magazines or journals would be a good place to test your ad.

 

With these tools and strategies, you can fish where the fish are.

 

The point is, you can now make your ads small and cheap because you no longer need to rely on big ads in traditional media to do all your selling.

 

You just need an ad big enough for a headline, a headline so intriguing that your readers will have to call your business hotline or visit your website to find out the rest of the story.

 

The great marketing guru, Benjamin Hart talked of one of GoDaddy.com ads that ran during a Super Bowl event.

 

The ad featured an enormous-chested woman in a tight T-shirt with the phrase “GoDaddy.com” emblazoned across her chest.

 

And that was about it.

 

The ad did not say what the service was.

 

But it was attention-getting.

 

He went immediately to his computer to find out what the company was selling.

 

He couldn’t get into the site – probably, everyone else watching the Super Bowl went to the site too.

 

Later turns out the company provides Internet marketing tools, including domain name registration, an online website building toll, a merchant account service, and most tools and services needed by people who market on the Internet.

 

That ad was certainly successful for GoDaddy.com.

 

They understood how to use the traditional advertising media to effectively and efficiently run an ad.

 

Its purpose was to get people to go their website, to then entice them to give them their email addresses by offering them free stuff.

 

GoDaddy’s plan worked on people. 

 

GoDaddy.com understands Internet marketing.

 

 

 

Let’s discuss the new things you’ve learned in this post in the comments section below.

Try These Strategies If You Want To Elicit Positive Responses for Your Next Fundraising Requests

 

 

When writing to solicit or request fund from people, the common thinking of an average marketer is to say, “If they love us or find it worthy, they’d give us something”.

 

Only a weak marketer reasons this way.    

 

A pro-marketer sets all things right in the right direction…aims at his or her target perfectly, and makes so sure the right – positive – responses are got from such requests.

 

Direct marketing gives no room for conjectures…

 

Direct marketing is scientific.

 

With direct marketing, responses are pre-determined; they can be forecasted…because the plans for them are fully calculated.

 

Hence, they results and outcomes could be easily measured and predicted.

 

 

Always Force an Answer

 

 

Do everything within your creative power to force your reader to respond in some way.

 

Ask your reader to send back an answer to your letter – “Yes” or “No”.

 

Asking for a response one way or the other requires the reader to make a decision. You want to give your reader reasons to answer now – to make a decision.

 

The worst answer for a marketer from his or her recipient is, “I’ll think about it and get back to you later.”

 

That means the answer is “No”.

 

But the prospect is also keeping his or her options open. The easiest answer for your prospect to give is “Maybe”.

 

By requiring a “Yes” or “No” answer on the spot, you are forcing your prospect to face a moment of truth…

 

“If I answer NO, I’ll look bad and evil-minded” is the thought you must create in the mind of the prospect.

 

The last thing you want your prospect to think is, “there’s no hurry. There’s no need for me to make a decision right now.”

 

Women take exactly this approach with men.

 

They’d say, “You either ask me to marry you now, or that’s it. No more waiting. Tonight we will go out on a date. If I don’t have a ring on my finger by the end of the day, I’m gone. That’s it. You’ll never see me again.

 

“Yikes!” the guy thinks. “I guess she’s not going to let me keep her along for further long years. I better rush out and get that ring.”

 

A weak marketer does not like forcing this moment of truth, or requiring a “Yes” or “No” on the spot.

 

A weak marketer believes that if he or she does not get a “No” answer, he or she still has a chance to get a positive response later.

 

This is wrong.

 

A marketer has very little chance of making any good with this approach…because most people would rather never commit until they absolutely must.

 

A strong marketer knows that forcing a moment of truth and requiring a decision on the spot will certainly produce more definitive “No” answers…but he or she will also force many more “Yes” answers – many more positive responses.

 

There are many methods of forcing a decision.

 

You might say in the P.S. (Post Script section), “if you decide not to give us something, would you mind writing me a note telling me why?”…

 

Or, “if you decide not to donate, please just write, ‘I am not donating’ across the letter and mail it back to me. That way, I will know you received and read my letter, only that you’re not interested, and I won’t bother you again.”

 

You can as well ask (by stating within your letters that) the recipients of your letters mail or return your letters and envelopes to you if they had decided not to donate or buy into the cause you’re promoting.

 

Many of them would find it quite insulting to return your letters and envelopes to you without sending a thing. 

 

Many of them would feel too embarrassed to return your letters with no gift at all.

 

So, in all your mailings and sales presentations, always think of ways to require a response one way or the other – to force a decision.

 

 

Let me have your thoughts to this post in the comments section below.

Here’s How to Strategically POSITION Your Business for Maximum Marketing Success

 

 

Positioning your business strategically in the heart of your leads and prospects is perhaps the most critical issue to settle before you begin all your marketing efforts for your products or services.

 

The reason why is because:

 

The offer of your products or services that you make to your leads and prospects is not just about price and terms.

 

Sometimes if you charge too little, they value your product or service less.

 

If a consultant was only charging you say, $25 per hour for his work, you might appreciate his low price, but you would certainly decline his service….

 

…“How can he or she charge so little if he or she is any good?” you’d think.

 

On the other hand, if he or she is charging you say, $500 per hour, you might stagger at the price, but you’d end up accepting it…

 

…knowing his or her price is high because he or she is the very best at what he or she does, and you certainly want the very best consultant to consult with.

 

Are Gucci’s shoes and handbags really worth the staggering price?

 

Are Gucci’s products really that much better than other brands that are one-third the price?

 

Gucci’s products do not necessarily look anything different from the others’.

 

Gucci’s entire marketing appeal is that its products are ridiculously over-priced.

 

Apparently, that’s part of what people want when they buy Gucci.

 

The Gucci label shouts to their friends: “look at me! See how much I paid for this. I must have so much money I don’t know what to do with it all.”

 

What this looks to me is just like someone saying, “Hey! Look at me!  I’ve just been ripped off!”

 

But there it is – that’s Gucci’s entire marketing pitch in a nutshell.

 

Smartphones and other smart devices are pretty good.

 

A whole range of companies are producing them, and they’re all good…but with little or no difference between the products of these different companies.

 

And the costs to get them are largely affordable to most people.

 

But Apple has figured out how to create a monopoly on the production of these electronic devices.

 

Then Apple figured out how to market their electronic gadgets, not just as costly, but as a way for people to show the kind of class they belong in the society.

 

So the question of price is not necessarily always about how low the price is compared to your competitors, but about the “positioning” of your product or service in people’s minds.

 

The question of how you “position” your product or service is the most important issue you must settle before you begin your marketing efforts.

 

Gucci is not really selling shoes and handbags…

 

Gucci is selling “image” and “status”.

 

Apple is not really selling smart, portable, and durable gadgets…

 

Apple is selling, “class”.

 

 

Figure out what makes you different – your Unique Selling Proposition (U.S.P.)

 

 

What is it that’s different about your business, your product, your service?

 

What is it that your business, product, or service does that no other business, product, or service does?

 

What makes you different from your competitors?

 

Marketers often toss around the term, “unique selling proposition” all the time.

 

But there are probably very small numbers of businesses that can say in 50 words or less why I or any other consumer should buy from them as opposed to all the other choices out there.

 

All this takes is some little thought and creativity.

 

Maybe what makes you different is that you are local.

 

Or maybe you’re different because you’re national or even multinational.

 

Maybe your advantage is that you’re small, or that you’re big.

 

Maybe your advantage is that your staff is old and “experienced”, or that your staff is young and “energetic”.

 

If you were to start a business that’d compete with say, Facebook, you don’t have to do exactly what Facebook does.

 

You only have to try to figure out what needs to be done in the art of social connections that Facebook isn’t doing.

 

You have to try to find a task that needs doing that no one else is working on.

 

Perhaps, you’d try to be even more specific and narrowed down to a path, say, business and job connections, just like LinkedIn is doing.

 

By taking this approach, you’d never become as big as Facebook, but you might become 20 percent or even 10 percent the size of Facebook.

 

You’d try to find some niche to dominate and become known for, some niche not occupied by Facebook already.

 

It would be hopeless to try to compete directly with Facebook, as hopeless as it would be to try to compete with Coca-Cola by launching an imitation cola.

 

Yes, other companies have done it.

 

Pepsi did it successfully with many billions of dollars in advertising.

 

Of course, Pepsi is unlikely ever to surpass Coke.

 

Pepsi will always be the #2 cola drink, at least in our lifetimes, and that’s not bad.

 

But even Pepsi emphasizes its differences with Coke.

 

Pepsi claims to be less “syrupy”, to have a “cleaner, more refreshing taste”, to be “chosen by 70 percent of people in blind taste tests”, and that it’s for a “younger generation”.

 

Pepsi never says it is the same as Coke, but rather claims to taste better than Coke.

 

But most of us don’t have billions of dollars to compete with the Coca-Colas of the world…

 

…so we need to do something different…

 

…something that’s clearly not being done by some other businesses that are a lot bigger and richer than we are.

 

So, figure out, or come up with something, that makes you different from your competition, and continuously hammer that theme into the minds of your customers and potential customers with relentless repetition.

 

Of course, your USP must be a difference that’s both needed and sell-able.

 

There’s no point in having a USP no one wants. 

 

 

What new thing have you just learned? Let me have your thoughts in the comments section below.

How to Use ELECTRONIC SEMINARS to Turn More of Your Business Leads and Customers into Long Lasting Buyers

 

 

Given the latest advancements in technology, you can now have video or audio conferences on the web (webinars) to train your leads and customers or to market your products or services, etc.

 

These were impossible a few years ago, but now anyone can afford these powerful marketing tools.

 

These tools mean you no longer need to pay for an expensive conference room or a hotel to hold a seminar or a conference.

 

Nor will the participants need to travel long distances, or expend huge costs on travelling welfare, etc.

 

Everyone can participate from the comfort of his or her office or home.

 

Your seminar or conference can include a few people or even up to thousands of people.

 

These electronically conducted conferences or seminars can be used to:

 

  1. Introduce a new product or service.

 

  1. Share (valuable) information.

 

  1. Build relationship with your prospects and customers.

 

  1. Reward your best customers by giving them a way to participate as an “insider” in a special level program, etc.

 

If you’ve categorized your customers for ease of marketing, you can then have electronic conferences for various levels of your customers; for example, one for your “Starter Members”, another for your “Intermediate Members”, and another for your “Advanced Members”, etc.

 

Your reasons for holding an electronic conference or seminar are limited only by your imaginations.

 

Some could be free.

 

Some you charge for.

 

It all depends on what you are trying to achieve.

 

Is it a friendly event where you share some valuable information for free?

 

Is the purpose to sell a product or service?

 

Or, is the electronic seminar itself the product? – For example, part of some expensive coaching program for certain category of your leads or customers?

 

You can charge whatever you like, from $1 to $10 to $30 to $100 to $1,000.

 

Whether you charge or not, and what you charge, depends entirely on what your purpose is and who the audience is – which is no different from all your other marketing efforts.

 

The same principles apply in all marketing.

 

Just the tools change.

 

The webinar or web conference, etc., are just some of the newest and most potent arrows in the marketer’s quiver that fit perfectly with the philosophy of “sell-by-educating-and-informing” – a method that ensures you more conversions and sales.

 

Some of the tools you can use to simply get these tasks done are Zoom, Google Hangouts, Skype, etc.

 

The electronic conference can be conducted in a way that everyone participates, or you can have just a few designated participants where everyone else is muted and can only listen.

 

You’ll have to have designated speakers if you have hundreds or thousands of participants in the conference or seminar.

 

You should not start off with a large electronic conference at first.

 

Start small with just a few people and get used to this medium.

 

As with any performance, you need to rehearse your act before you hit the big stage.

 

When you promote your electronic conference, you’ll do it exactly as you do all your marketing, following the procedures below:

 

  1. You’ll want to use an attention-getting headline for your electronic conference or seminar (e.g., “Thirteen Ways to Double the Sales and Conversion Rates of Your Business This Year”).

 

  1. You’ll need to tell people when it is, how long it will be, and how to access the conference.

 

  1. You’ll want to emphasize that this is a “By Invitation Only” conference.

 

  1. You’ll need to publicize the benefits participants will gain from the seminar (like, “you’ll learn how to automate your marketing so you will never need to work round the clock marketing your products or services again”).

 

  1. If your conference is selling something, you’ll want to offer an incentive for people to hear or watch the entire presentation (i.e., “you’ll want to stay on this seminar for the entire 60 minutes, because at the end, we’ll show you how to download your free book, How to Attract High Paying Clients and Customers”).

 

  1. When you begin the conference or seminar, and if you have a large group, you will need to mute participants on the line.

 

And you will need to explain why not everyone will be able to speak by saying something like, “because we have a sold-out seminar today with 105 participants, we are muting the line for everyone except the featured speakers in order to cut down on background noise so everyone can hear clearly, and because we have a lot of great material to cover in a short period of time.

 

We know how busy all of you are, so let’s get started. If you have questions or comments, please just email them to our support email. We’ll try to answer your questions as we go and as time allows.”

 

  1. As you would with a regular conference in a physical conference room, you will want to introduce yourself and the speakers.

 

And you will want to encourage all participants to take notes.

 

  1. You will likely want to close out your conference with a call to action of some kind.

 

If you were selling something, you would make the same kind of pitch you would in a marketing letter.

 

You would give your listeners:

 

  • Benefits to the buyer.

 

  • The offer.

 

  • Proof of your claims (i.e., testimonials, case studies, track record).

 

  • A super-charged guarantee.

 

  • A way to order.

 

  • Incentive to order right now, and not later.

 

  1. You then close out the conference by thanking everyone for participating and give everyone a way to get their free book (or other incentive reward) for staying on the seminar for the full-time.

 

If necessary, you apologize for not being able to cover every question emailed in, but promise to answer all emails after the conference.

 

The benefits of incorporating audio or video conferencing into your marketing plan are enormous.

 

Here are just a few:

 

 

  1. Your reach is now global, just like the world’s biggest corporations.

 

 

Using these tools, you can a wide range of global audience and break your geographical bounds. All thanks to the internet.

 

Although not everyone has a high-speed internet connection, but everyone can still participate.

 

It’s possible to offer participants a choice of watching a video, or listening to an audio – and it could even be recorded for those that can’t participate in real-time for them to access later on.

 

 

  1. Increases your visibility and credibility with your clients and prospects.

 

 

You will be perceived as a market leader and highly professional.

 

Those who conduct seminars and conferences are perceived as experts.

 

 

  1. It cements a relationship with your customers.

 

 

The more your customers see and hear you, the more loyal to you they will be.

 

If your presentation is compelling, if the information you are sharing is valuable, you will develop a committed loyal following.

 

 

  1. It’s cheap.

 

 

You no longer need to travel to meet with your customers.

 

You no longer need to rent a conference room.

 

Everyone can participate from wherever they happen to be.

 

 

  1. Minimal logistics.

 

 

Conducting such an electronic conference requires far less logistics and complexity than a physical seminar at a location.

 

No hotel and travel reservations.

 

No need to serve food, refreshments, etc.

 

No name tags.

 

 

  1. You can replay it over and over.

 

 

You can upload the conference or seminar onto your website for repeat playing.

 

If you are in the seminar or information sharing business, you can charge a fee to give your customers access to an archived library of seminars.

 

 

 Here are some uses for the electronic conference or seminar:

 

  • You can use them to share valuable information that is of interest to your market;

 

  • You can use them to introduce a new product or service;

 

  • You can use them to conduct a class or seminar;

 

  • You can use them to showcase a book you’ve written;

 

  • You can use them to train salespeople and company personnel if they are dispersed geographically;

 

  • You can use them to conduct Q & A sessions with your customers and clients; and

 

  • You can use them to conduct a focus group to pilot test your marketing message.

 

 

 

What new knowledge have you gained from this post? Let me know in the comments section below.