Internet Marketing Facts From 166 Respondents

internet marketing facts

Internet marketing facts – Recently I conducted a survey asking some questions related to internet marketing / make money online. The survey managed to get 166 respondents, and as promised everyone who participated will be automatically entered into the lucky draw where one random lucky winner will get my upcoming software/tool (to be retailed @ at least $97) for free.

Announcing the lucky winner… read more…

Why I Don’t Like Online Product Launches

online product launches

I bet you know about the kind of online product launches going around ENDLESSLY…

It seems almost every week there is a new product launch; and during these launches, the product owners hit their list SUPER HARD and they ask read more…

How To Get JV Partners (even when you don’t promote their products)

how to get jv partners

How to get JV partners – First of all, be realistic. Although every product owner wants the gurus in their field to promote their product or service, that is NOT going to happen!

99% of the time your JV proposal is going to be rejected, and it doesn’t take a genius to understand why.

Put yourself in the gurus’ shoes. If you were a guru, you’d get read more…

Internet Marketing Basics – What’s Your Story?

internet marketing basics

Sometimes when I browse around the net and I come across INTERESTING and USEFUL blogs (not necessarily blogs in the Internet marketing area), I’d like to find out who the creator of the blog is. However, not all blogs have an “About Me” page. Even when they have that page (meaning it’s clickable), some of them are empty. This is a HUGE read more…

Reciprocity Marketing – How To Use Reciprocity In Your Business

reciprocity marketing

In this post, we’re going to take a look at how to use reciprocity marketing in our business.

But before that, let’s take a look at what the word “reciprocity” means.

Reciprocity, taken from Wikipedia, means:

“The norm of reciprocity is the social expectation that people will respond to each other in kind-returning benefits for benefits…”

In simple English terms, it means that we, as human beings, have a tendency to respond to other people the same way how they treat us.

If Bob is kind and nice to you, you feel the need to be kind and nice to him. Barring some exceptional rare cases, it’s just human nature to react that way.

I say barring some exceptional cases because there are a few rare people out there who do not appreciate the kindness other people are showing them, and instead of returning the kindness back, they simply do nothing, or worse, they return back with ill intentions.

However, today’s post is about the former – which is to return one’s kindness back.

Let me give you an example of reciprocity in action in our everyday lives

Let’s say your birthday is around the corner, and today you accidentally meet your long-lost friend, John, whom you’ve never met in 10 years.

John still remembers your birthday, and on your birthday he gives you a birthday present.

What do you do?

If you’re like me or most people, you’ll most likely feel happy and have a sense of guilt at the same time. Happy because your friend still remembers your birthday even though you guys never met for 10 years. A sense of guilt because John has just given you a birthday present and you feel the need to reciprocate – you want to give John a present back to express your gratitude.

Reciprocity In Business

In our business, if we use the power of reciprocity correctly, we can attract more customers and hence make more sales as a result. The way to do this is to give away for FREE cool and high quality content that other people would normally charge.

Who do you give away to?

Your subscribers, prospects, customers, and blog readers.

Give away unconditionally and expect NOTHING in return. Even though deep down inside you’re expecting them to reciprocate by buying your products in the future, now is NOT the time to think about: “What can I get from these people? Will they buy my products?”

Trust me, just give away UNCONDITIONALLY and the rest will take care of itself and everything will come NATURALLY.

During the initial stages when you’re giving away cool, high quality content all the time, you’ll most likely not see any results. Your efforts will SEEMINGLY go to waste. But I promise you, your efforts will not go down the drain.

(…even if it were to go down the drain, you can still repurpose the content in other ways so your precious time and effort in creating that content will not be wasted)

Give it time and be patient

All your efforts will pay off in the future when you start to gain momentum. It’s just like a snowball going down the mountain – initially the snowball is small and moves at a moderate speed. As the snowball falls down the mountain slope, it picks up more snow and therefore falls faster. In the end, what started out as a small snowball turns into a GIANT snowball.

Your marketing efforts are the same. You need to give it time to pick up momentum. NEVER EVER expect instant results!

As a sidenote, the power of reciprocity can also be used “wrongly”. An example in the Internet marketing or Internet business world is where the marketing gurus scratch one another’s back by cross-promoting one another’s products.

I’ve talked about this before, which is called “Crazy Guru Promo Emails“.

Basically Guru A promote Guru B’s new product that has just launched on a massive scale; and the next time Guru A has a new product that is going to be released, Guru B will return the favor by promoting it.

Please note I’m not against promoting products. What I have a problem is these gurus promote products without even reviewing the product being promoted first – they just do it for one reason, and that is so that their next product can be promoted by the guru whose product they’re currently promoting.

So what’s the takeaway for today’s article?

Answer: Use reciprocity marketing in your business and give away for FREE high quality content that your competitors would normally charge. This will make your subscribers, prospects, customers, and blog readers feel indebted to you, which will in turn make it easier for you to ask something back from them in the future in the form of asking them to buy your products.

Let me know your thoughts and comments below…

Repurposing Content – And A New Caricature!

Just very recently, I had a caricature of myself done:

repurposing content - caricature

Compare the caricature with a real picture of me:

repurposing content - welly

What do you think? Looks A LOT like me huh? :mrgreen:

Anyway, let’s continue with today’s post about repurposing content. I just thought I’d share something personal and funny with you, that is why we have the caricature introduction there…

Have you ever heard of the term “recycled content”?

Recycled content, as the phrase implies, means that you can repurpose the same content in different ways.

Why would you want to do that?

The answer is: to save time, money, and effort trying to come up with new content.

Don’t get me wrong. You still need new content, it’s just that by recycling content you’ll be able to leverage on the work you’ve already done, thereby saving you tons of time and effort.

There are 2 ways content can be recycled:

1. Repurpose It In Different FORMATS

Let’s say you create an ebook or report. The same content within the ebook can be repurposed in an audio mp3 format by doing a voice-over of the ebook simply by reading aloud word-for-word and then recording what is being read.

If you’re not comfortable doing this yourself, you can hire a professional to do it for you at an affordable price.

The audio format has a higher perceived value and is thus valued higher. If you’re giving this away to collect leads, then people are more willing to give up their email addresses to get your audio course (rather than just another ebook). If you plan to sell this, then you can attach a higher price tag to the audio course as well.

Or you can repurpose the ebook content and turn it into a video course. Video has the highest perceived value compared to ebook or audio format, and will thus sell at a higher price.

Even when a customer buys an ebook and you upsell him the mp3 or video version of the same ebook, he WILL buy it. Okay, not everyone will, but there are bound to be some people who will take you up on your offer.

People have different preferred learning formats; and if you can provide your content in all 3 different formats – text, audio, and video – then you will no doubt grow your audience.

2. Repurpose It In Different OCCASIONS

You write a blog post today. Tomorrow, a month later, 2 months later, you can use the SAME blog post to attract DIFFERENT people to your blog.

How do you do that?

You do that by harnessing the power of autroresponders.

Every time you write a blog post, you tell your subscribers via your autoresponder broadcast feature that you have a cool, new, informative post on your blog.

You can even make this ALMOST totally AUTOMATED by setting follow up messages in your autroresponder to direct them to the many blog posts that you’ve done in the past. Of course, to be able to do this, your blog must have a substantial amount of blog posts so that you can provide “new” content to your subscribers on a consistent basis.

I put quotes around the word “new” because to your subscribers it seems as though they’re getting new content, when in fact your content is already a few weeks or months old. However, old content does not mean it’s useless. In fact, a lot of content is long-lasting.

However, as you’ve most likely already heard everywhere, perceived is a lot times better than reality. When your subscribers think that you’re creating fantastic new content all the time and letting them know that they can consume it at your blog (thereby making them “think” that you’re a good guy looking after their best interests), then they’re going to be very responsive towards you and what you’re offering to them in the future.

It is said that consistency and repetitiveness are very good catalysts in building trust and mutually beneficial relationships with your subscribers, so if you have enough blog posts on your blog and you follow up with your subscribers via your autoresponder by giving them AWESOME content on your existing blog posts on a CONSISTENT basis, then chances are they’re going to be “WOW”ed and blown away by you.

You can also copy your blog posts (if they are text in nature) and paste them into the email body so that subscribers will receive the content directly in their emails. However, I highly suggest that you refer them to your posts on your blog so that they’ll be exposed to offers on your blogs, thereby giving you additional opportunities to make more money at the same time building relationships with them.

You hit two birds with one stone. Cool?

In addition, by referring them to your blog posts, they can also leave their comments and feedback on the blog, thus increasing communication between you and them, which will further strengthen your bond with them.

Recap

So to recap what I’ve just talked about today, remember that content can be repurposed in different formats and occasions. The same ebook can be turned into an audio mp3 or video course, hence increasing its perceived value and thus the price you charge. Blog posts that you have done previously can also be used over and over again as great content that you can give to your subscribers via your autoresponder follow up messages.

The point is, don’t waste good content that you’ve created. We all should work smart in this day and age to leverage the work we’ve done.

What do you have to say about repurposing content that already exist? Tell me in a comment below…

(If you want to tell me how COOL I looked in my caricature, of course you’re welcome to do that as well :mrgreen:…)

Satisfy (The Majority Of) Your Customers

When it comes to selling products and services, both online and offline, there are bound to be unsatisfied customers. This is true no matter how good a job we’ve done to service them.

The fact is: we simply can’t make everyone happy. That is simply not possible. Everyone has different standards and expectations. What impresses customer A may not impress customer B.

When a customer’s expectations are not met, they are unsatisfied. When that happens, 3 things occur:

1. They won’t buy our products or services again in the future

The key to making big money is to sell other related products that increase in price and value. In the Internet marketing field, this is commonly known as “back end” products.

If customers are ONLY buying your product/service one-time, then there’s not going to be a lot of money being made. In some cases, you may even lose money by selling ONLY your low-cost front-end product.

2. They will bad-mouth our name to other people

Worse than number 1 above, these unsatisfied customers tell EVERYBODY about our perceivably (at least in their eyes) “poor” product or service. Our supposedly “bad name” spreads like wildfire.

This is especially enhanced with today’s web 2.0 where consumers interact a lot, thanks to the help of social networking and bookmarking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Stumble Upon, Digg, etc. People can interact and communicate freely and easily with one another.

Unfortunately, we human beings behave like herds of sheep.

One bad-mouth leads to another, and people follow other people in joining the bad-mouthing bandwagon, even though they have not purchased the product/service in question yet and hence do not know about its quality.

This is, of course, VERY BAD for our business.

3. They will ask for their money back (also known as refund), if at all possible

When selling physical products, asking for a refund also means that you have to return the purchased goods to the seller/manufacturer. Services-type of goods is harder (or sometimes impossible) to return.

In the online information business, asking for a refund is VERY easy. The customer still gets to keep the product after the refund because in most cases, information products are delivered digitally. This means that customers can consume the digital product, and then ask for their money back, and the product is still in their PCs.

So what do you do if you do indeed sell digital products? Do you actually need to refund the customer’s money if he so requested?

The answer is, of course, YES!

Having sold thousands of copies of my own information products for the past 15 months, there are VERY few refund requests that I’ve gotten. I forgot the exact number (I have to dig through my files to find an exact number), but I’m pretty sure it’s less than 10.

Had I not put up the “money back guarantee” sign on my sales page, I’m VERY sure that there would be a lot less people buying my products.

What I’m saying is: the benefits that “money back guarantee” bring far outweighs its disadvantages.

You might be thinking “That’s great Welly, but what happens if a freebie seeker takes advantage of this? They can buy my digital products, and then ask for a refund. Won’t I be losing money?”

To which I’d answer: That is inevitable. In every market, you’ll find this kind of people. It’s not a matter of IF they’ll rip you off; it’s a matter of WHEN.

My advice is to FOCUS on your good, paying customers instead of worrying for the very small number of freebie seekers who refund your products.

One tip you can use is to record who refunds what, so that if a serial refunder keeps refunding your products time and time again, you can ban them from ever purchasing from you again.

Instead of exerting our efforts and time on a few bad eggs, we might as well focus on our good, paying customers and make them happy so that they want to buy from us again and again.

Conclusion

To summarize, it is a heavy price to pay if we let our customers down (not meeting their expectations). That said, it is also NOT possible to please EVERY SINGLE customer and make them happy.

The key is to cater for the majority of our customers and find out what they want, and strive very hard to please and make them happy, so that they become our lifelong customers. If they’re happy and satisfied with our products/services, there’s also a high chance that they’ll refer their friends to us.

What do you have to say about satisfying your customers? Please let me know in a comment below…

Follow Up Tips For Your Internet Business

It is no longer a secret that people buy from those people that they trust. This is especially true:

1. In the online world where every product owner is “hiding” his/her face behind a computer.

2. When you’re selling a product that is not a popular brand (meaning people haven’t heard of the brand before).

These potential customers can’t be blamed either, since it is very easy to scam people nowadays simply by using the power of the Internet.

Armed with this knowledge, we as Internet business owners should build beneficial and trusting relationships with our prospects so that they know who we are, what we do, what our expertise are – so that they trust us and want to buy from us. :grin:

If you’ve been a loyal reader of this blog, you should have already known that I talk and advocate this a lot.

Without a good relationship with your prospects, it is VERY hard to sell them your products and services. Without a good relationship with your customers, it is also EXTREMELY difficult to sell other related products to them.

The key to successfully sell to them is to build, as I’ve said before, beneficial and trusting relationships with them. You do this by first creating some kind of valuable Freebie to “bait” your visitors to hand you their email addresses.

If you don’t want to create a freebie yet, you can also use some PLR freebies. Just make sure that they are high quality freebies and that you put your name as the creator of the freebie.

After your visitors hand over their email addresses, you want to impress them by giving much more than they expected of you. At this stage, your visitors have been converted to leads/prospects, thanks to the squeeze page that you’ve created. :mrgreen:

For example, let’s say that on the squeeze page you promised to give them a Free report on how to train their dogs effectively. However on the download page, in addition to giving them this Free report, you might also give them another surprise freebie that shows them how to make sure their dogs are eating healthy, balanced diets.

The surprise freebie should be somewhat related to the main freebie that you promised.

A few days after they’ve subscribed to get your freebie, you ought to follow up with them to check how they are doing and if they have successfully downloaded the freebie (and surprise freebie) yet. You also want to remind them to implement what they’ve learned and that if they have any questions they can feel free to ask you.

Then a few days later you follow up with them again to give more free valuable content. It is very important that on the first few follow-ups with them you don’t sell them anything but instead concentrate on providing great content to educate them.

This is to impress them that you care for them and you know what you’re talking about. When they see you as someone who they can trust because you’ve stood out from the crowd by giving, giving, and giving first without even trying to sell them anything, their resistance barrier towards you will decrease. :wink:

Let’s say that your visitors are on 30 other marketers’ lists. 29 of them send out sales pitches all the time every day promoting the next big product launch, while the remaining one marketer (that’s YOU) give, give, and give, which one do you think will stand out from the crowd and get their attention?

I’m not saying you can’t send them sales pitches. At the end of the day, you and I are still marketers. We need to sell stuff in order to make money.

I’m simply saying that you should focus your efforts when you first come into contact with a person who doesn’t know you yet with the right approach, and that right approach is to impress them that you’re different than the rest of the pack and that you truly care for them.

You need to demonstrate that you’re in this business for the long term and that they can count on you to provide them with the stuff they need. In other words, you want them to buy from you.

I would say after 3 – 5 follow-ups with them, you can insert your first sales pitch to them. After this sales pitch, you would then educate them again with free, valuable content. Then once in while do your sales pitch again.

You need to have a balance between free content and sales pitch, and be sure to send more free content than sales pitch. In my current Internet business I’m using a 3:1 approach – meaning for every 3 content messages, I would send a sales pitch.

Different markets respond differently, so you need to test what works best for your market.

Please drop your comments below, I’d like to see what your opinions are…

The One Tool Every Internet Marketer Can’t Live Without

To succeed in Internet Marketing, you need tools to help you run your Internet business.

Internet marketing is not just about making money online.

It’s about running a profitable business on the Internet that is going to provide you with profits on a consistent basis for the long term.

It’s not a hit and run situation where you only earn money 1 time.

To make lots of money on the Internet, you need to view Internet marketing as a real business, just like you would when you run an offline brick and mortar store.

…and to be successful in running a very profitable Internet business, you need tools.

PERIOD.

You can’t do everything manually. There simply isn’t enough time for you to do everything by yourself.

We only have 24 hours in a day, so we should focus our time and efforts on the more important things and leave the repetitive tasks which can be automated into the hands of technology.

Hey we’re living in the 21st century! :mrgreen:

One VERY IMPORTANT aspect of Internet marketing that you can automate is through the use of an autoresponder system.

An autoresponder system basically is a system to follow up with your website visitors so that you can build beneficial and trusting relationships with them, in the hope that they’ll buy your products/services in the future.

In this ever-increasing-competition society that we live in, every marketer and his dog is doing everything they can to sell their products and services.

People are getting tired of being harassed with marketing messages all day long.

Because of this, it is VERY HARD to be able to sell your products/services to prospects on your first encounter with them.

This is especially true if you’re selling your products/services on the Internet.

They don’t know who you are and they see you as someone who’s hiding behind a computer.

With that said, in order to be able to successfully sell your stuff to prospects, you need some kind of mechanism to “capture” their contact info so that you can follow up with them on a consistent basis to build trusting relationships with them.

After they begin to trust you will you be able to sell your stuff to them.

Sure there are exceptions where prospects buy your stuff the first time you offer them, but this is VERY RARE.

If you want to sell effectively and consistently you MUST have an autoresponder system in place to follow up with them.

To get people to sign up for your autoresponder, you need to “bait” them with some kind of valuable freebie such as a free report on your field/niche. If they want to receive this valuable free report, then they need to give you their contact info (usually in the form of email address).

Once they signed up for your autoresponder, you email them every few days to build beneficial and trusting relationships with them. :razz:

The best part with this autoresponder thing is that you can compose your messages in one go and then determine when you want these preset messages to be sent out to your prospects and it will do the job of automatically sending out the email messages for you (yes even while you sleep)!

SUPER IMPORTANT: Do Not sell your products/services all the time within these emails. Instead what you want to do is to have a mixture of education/sales messages.

Let me explain…

Let’s say that someone just signed up for your autoresponder to get your free report. Your first message to him should be to congratulate him for requesting your report to affirm him that he’s made the right decision. You want him to feel at ease and assure him that he’s going to get valuable and useful information.

Another message might go out to him automatically from your autoresponder system 3 days later and educate him more about your niche.

Then a few days later your autoresponder system emails him another message revealing even more great content.

You can then set the next message to be a sales message where you do your sales pitch about your product or an affiliate product if you don’t have a product yet (by the way if you don’t have a product yet, you might want to check out my brand new product creation crash course Instant Product System).

The key is to keep a balance between content and sales message. If all you do is send out sales message all day long, then your subscribers (people in your autoresponder system) are going to unsubscribe and you will not be able to follow up with them anymore, ever.

The converse is also true – that is, DO NOT send content messages all day long without doing any selling because if you do then you’re not going to sell your products/services.

After all, the whole purpose of getting them on your autoresponder system (also known as your list) is to follow up with them so they buy your products/services. If you don’t do any selling, you might as well not set up your autoresponder system in the first place.

In my opinion, having a good autoresponder system in place is A MUST to be able to sell effectively on a consistent basis.

The 2 leading autoresponder companies on the market today are Getresponse and Aweber. I’ve been using Getresponse since the start of my Internet business and I highly recommend them. Aweber is known to be awesome as well, although it has a much steeper price when your subscribers go over the 500 limit.

Whichever company you choose, make sure you get an autoresponder system in place for your Internet business! :wink: