Authors: Free Conversion Funnel Templates that Make You Money

Conversion funnel. Sales funnel. Marketing funnel.  As an author, it's to your benefit to know what these terms mean.

A funnel (regardless of whether it's called conversion, sales or marketing) is the term that applies to a process you take subscribers, clients and potential clients through that usually starts with a free offer and ends up with a paid offer.

Basically, you are guiding the customer toward various conversion points. Ultimately, you are encouraging people to take you up on a paid offer. There are various ways to set up funnels. When you know what you're doing, you can turn a $20 book purchase into one that generates hundreds, even thousands of dollars in sales.

Authors Want to Make Money

Although some authors could care less about making money, most do want to make money from their efforts. If you're able to make money you're able to keep writing without worrying about how you're going to pay your bills.

Selling books, in most cases, is not going to give you the type of revenues that will pay all your bills. Sure, for a handful of authors, their book revenues are substantial. For most authors, it's necessary to incorporate various revenue streams in the mix.

The image of my white board (above), shows a simple conversion funnel virtually any nonfiction author can develop.

Simply put, you create a free offer that your readers are interested in. From there, you have a low-priced up-sell that's an easy “yes” for subscribers.

Not sure how to create conversion funnels. Click here http://www.powerupforprofits.com/salesfunnel to access several templates virtually anyone will benefit from.

What's the Process?

Most people agree you need a sales funnel, yet, many have no idea how to make them really work.

There is a process customers go through when buying your product. It is built on need and desire. The greater the investment on the part of your customer, the more you must build confidence, trust, and credibility in their mind. If you are selling $10 widgets, that’s one thing. If, on the other hand, you are seeking to build long-term relationships with your customers and be viewed as the “go-to” expert, you need a systematic approach. While widgets are sometimes part of my clients’ product offerings, they usually want to go beyond the widget and make a difference in the lives of their customers. They want to provide long-term solutions and create ongoing relationships with their customers. They want to build their business based on trust, value, and integrity.

No matter how great your product, most people will not buy a high-ticket product or a $1,000, $5,000, $10,000-plus mentoring course or consulting contract without first being introduced to you by way of a free or $20-$50 offering. This is what is referred to as “funnel marketing.”

1_Sales_FunnelCustomers enter your funnel by way of something that is very low risk such as a free or very inexpensive item. Based on their experience with that first contact with you, they decide what their next course of action will be.

Most people who use funnels stop with a one off approach.

But smart marketers know there is much more to the sales funnel process than this. Even if someone says no to your first offer, they may be interested in something else. But unless you know what that something else is, you are leaving a ton of money on the table. Additionally, you are not allowing your customers to have more than one choice in how to do business with you.

One person who is a hands-down expert on robust sales funnels is David Perdew. David has built his business teaching others how to create conversion funnels. Right now you can access lots of FREE templates when you go to http://www.powerupforprofits.com/salesfunnel

You will learn how to…

  • Include all the correct funnel elements before you ever build a web-page
  • Understand the difference between single- and double-optin funnels and when to use them
  •  Uncover the secrets of eliminating conversion bottlenecks
  •  Improve funnel performance with simple split testing to double and triple conversions
  •  Review simple optin funnels that will turn your prospects into buyers immediately

Avoid being like other authors who wish they were making money. Be among those of us who absolutely understand the power of conversion funnels without having to figure it all out for yourself. http://www.powerupforprofits.com/salesfunnel

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Authors: If You Can’t Take Criticism, You Best Not Play

If you’re an author who proactively markets, you are well advised to have broad shoulders. I can guarantee you this, the more you market, the more visible you become and the more you try to help other authors based on proven strategies, the more the haters comes out of the woodwork.

Feedback

“Clickbait article.”

“This is crazy BS. And all to try to sell a book. And the book is “How to be #1 on Amazon”. And anybody who tells you that they can make you #1 or a bestseller is lying to you. Period.”

“Just more useless advice base on one person's vagrant opinions. Enough of the philosophising and let writers write. Them's my sentiments.”

These are a handful of comments I received from a blog post I wrote that I shared on LinkedIn.

NOTE: I purposely didn’t correct the spelling of the word “philosophising” in that this person is a writer, but didn’t check their spelling prior to posting. Things that make you go, “Hmmmm”

Get Out of the Kitchen

If you can’t deal with criticism, you may be tempted to hide out and play it safe. The reality is this; the more visible you become, the more you open yourself up to criticism.

This is especially true for authors who are proactive in the way they market. Add those of us who teach other authors how to market and the criticism temperature rises considerably.

Here’s the deal, “If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”

Stop You in Your Tracks

Some people are more than willing to dole out harsh criticism. Sadly, this stops many authors from marketing their books.

Fear of criticism is what prevents some authors from doing all they can to get their message out to market. The comments above would stop many people in their tracks.

Whether it be their books, information products, webinars, teleseminars or presentations, to be visible means you are setting yourself up as target for other people’s criticism, judgment and harsh words.

My feelings about the criticism? So be it.

Yet, it’s a topic that does need to see the light of day.

My response

Although I could have ignored the comments, I chose to respond with, “I take no offense to any of the comments. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. Not every author wants to make money. That's great. If you enjoy writing for the sake of writing, fantastic.

“But if someone wants to make money with their writing, in most cases, they must market. Whether it be the author or someone on their team or a company they hire, rarely can you not market your book.”

More committed than ever

The negative feedback makes me more committed than ever to educate authors on various ways they can market their books.

Again, if an author has no desire to make money, that’s fine. But for most authors, we love to write AND we love to make money with our writing. Making money means selling books. Selling books means marketing.

Seems for some authors, especially those who skirt around marketing, they haven’t connected the dots.

It’s Laughable

I laughed when I read the comment, “And all to try to sell a book.”

Well duh. Isn’t selling books what most authors want to do? If we don’t sell books, who’s going to read our work?

Again, if you write simply to write, that’s great. But if you’re an author who wants to make money with your books and use your books to create other opportunities such as speaking engagements, consulting contracts and coaching, you need to market.

You also need to develop broad shoulders to weather the negative feedback you are bound to get.

90/10% Rule

According to Dr Anita Sanz,Ninety percent of what anyone tells me about my book I figure is really giving me information about them and only ten percent is potentially helpful information about me or my book. I only need to pay attention to the ten percent, and it’s up to me to figure out what that ten percent is.

What is the 10% you need to focus on? And… are you willing to let go of the other 90% of feedback that likely isn’t worth paying attention to?

No feedback is worse than negative feedback. If you get no feedback it means you are so perfect you make no mistakes or no one is paying attention to what you’re doing.

The bottom line is this; if you want to play with the big boys and girls, you must put on your big boys and girls pants.

 

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Authors: Turn Your Book Into an eBased ATM

As an author, you’re in a great position to re-purpose the content of your book into various e-based training programs. This is a great way to serve your market at an even deeper level. It’s also a wonderful way to generate multiple streams of revenue.

Let’s say you wrote a 12 chapter book on team building. Each chapter and go deeper into the topic by offering webinars, teleseminars, eBooks and eReports.

Simply out the process for a usable flow. From there, you offer the various formats to your community.

Every time someone enrolls in your offering, you are building more trust with them.

Perfect vs Reality

In a perfect world, people would consume and digest all the information we provide to them, but the reality is far from perfect.

Regardless of the price they pay, the majority of people who request a training program utilize very little of the content.

A primary reason is the short attention span a great majority of people have. With all that is available, people will grab something, look at it and then go on to the next bright shiny object.

What a Waste!

A great deal of intellectual property goes to waste because people are distracted.

The average attention span has dropped significantly due to social media, iPhones, and all that is available on the internet.

If we don’t get answers immediately, we search out the next quick solution. Yet, doing this is counterproductive to one’s success.

Jumping around online actually prevents us from staying the course on finding a viable solution to virtually any problem we have.

Even when we get the answer, often we don’t take the needed actions to solve the initial problem.

By jumping around people are constantly in the search mode and minimize their chances of implementing information.

In the years I've been writing books, offering online training and creating information products, I've learned a lot about how people access their information.

The Past Does NOT Equal the Future

In the past, people wanted longer training material. More was better.  Today, the preference is short, simple to digest material. Less is more.

To be successful in the world of digital information, your job is to provide content in several formats to accommodate the various learning styles.

  • Audio
  • Video
  • PDFs
  • Slides

Additionally, before you go into creation mode, find out what your market really wants. Creating solutions without knowing what the specific problems are, can be a complete waste of time.

Survey Says

Conducting a simple survey can go a long way in saving time, providing the solution people need and want and increasing the chances of the user consuming the information.

In the years I’ve worked with experts and influencers who want to impact their market with books, I’ve become keenly aware of common problems authors deal with.

There is a Solution

Over the years, I’ve created numerous programs to address these problems. My most recent (and incredibly robust and easy to digest) program, Book Accelerator, was created based on what my community needed (and wanted).

The program is a step-by-step system that teaches authors how to gain visibility for you and your books. It’s the very system I’ve used to sell thousands of books, make lots of money and build a successful business.

If you’re looking for easy to apply information, this program is for you.

Monthly Training

Immediately upon enrolling, you have access to the back room with all the training material. You can go as fast (or as slow) as you prefer.

In addition, you receive two live trainings each month. Both are recorded so if you can't make it to the live training, you can listen at your leisure.

The first training of the month is webinar style with me. I go deep into a topic about book marketing and book sales.

The second training is called Conversations Over Coffee with Industry Experts. Each month, you enjoy insights from an industry expert.

These are just two great benefits of the Book Accelerator program. Check it out. www.anatomyofabooklaunch.com

The fact is, you can take months, even years, to figure all this out yourself or you can jump right in and learn from someone who stays on the leading edge of book marketing information.

Not only do I continue to learn what's going on in the industry, I am one of the small percentage of authors who make a profit with my books. www.anatomyofabooklaunch.com

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Authors… frustrated that your free offers aren’t converting into subscribers?

Whatever your interest, curiosity or question, there's going to be information available through a quick YouTube or Google search.

Many times, you're directed to a website or blog for the information. Once you hit the site, there's a good chance an opt in box pops up, encouraging you to give your name and email address in trade for a video, report, checklist, cheat sheet or spot on a webinar or teleseminar.

The benefit to you is getting the “thing.” The benefit to the person giving you the “thing” is the opportunity to turn you into a paying client or customer.

Reverse the Scenario

As an author, if you plan to make money with your books, it's imperative you do what you can to build a subscriber list.

With a targeted list, you have a greater opportunity to sell lots of books quickly with each book you publish.

Although most authors know they should build a list, many have yet to start. One of the most pressing questions they have is, “How do I build a responsive opt-in subscriber list?”

Maybe you've heard you just need to give something away and people will eagerly give you their contact information.

So you give it a shot, put together an offer and wait and wait and…. wait.

Offer something of high value

List building does work. However, what you offer has to be the “right” thing for the end user.

Simply throwing up an offer page, telling people to get your “thing” and kicking back like a tiger in wait, is not the most effective way to build your list.

The best way to build a list is offer something to your community that aligns with your expertise and their need for a solution.

Think Long-Term

Rather than simply putting an FREEBIE together, determine how the giveaway aligns with your book(s). In essence, you're taking subscribers on a journey that hopefully ends up with them buying your book.

The more there is an obvious connection to your products and services, the higher your conversion rates to other offers. A book is a product. Plain and simple.

Solve a Specific Problem

The more your gift solves a specific problem, the better. For example, one of my popular free offers is How to Hit #1 on Amazon.  One opt in page offers a report and the other a webinar. Both cover different aspects of how to hit #1.

When someone opts in, they are taken to a Thank You page directing them to check their inbox. But while they're waiting, they can watch a short video.

The video makes another offer for a $197 product that they can invest in for only $20.

Every offer, from the free to the $20 aligns with getting a book to #1.

The sketch is a simple conversion funnel I outlined for a client. It's very, very simple and virtually any database program has the capability of accommodating this level of funnel to build your list.

Less is More

When it comes to what you ask people to give you, less is definitely more. In other words, the less information required, the better. You will get a higher opt in rate if you only require an email address compared to an email and name. Ask for a name, email and phone number and opt-ins continue to plummet.

However, when you send broadcasts messages, having a name included does increase conversions. I prefer asking for name and email rather than just the email.

Big Challenge

The greatest challenge today is information overload. Most everyone is so overloaded with information that the idea of getting on “one more list” is not very appealing.

As long as what you offer is incredibly high value AND solves a problem, people will opt in and stay on your list. If all you do is sell, sell, sell, they will grow tired of your emails that appear to only care if they buy your stuff.

This is when opt-outs skyrocket.

Make Creating a Nice Gift a Priority

Avoid falling into the trap of thinking you don’t have time create something to offer.  Ethical bribes that are incredibly high value are the cornerstone of building your online business, selling books as well as other products and services you provide.

I have dozens of “giveaways” that I have developed over the years. Everything from eReports, eBooks, teleseminars, ezines, a 4-day email course and more. This has allowed me to build a list from the ground up (this means I started with nothing and built a highly profitable list of subscribers).

As an author, when you have a subscriber list one place you can encourage them to visit is your Amazon page.


 

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Are Hybrid Publishers All They Are Cracked Up to Be?

The day you've been waiting for has arrived. Your book is published and listed on Amazon.

The Hybrid Publisher you hired did all they said they would do …. to a point.

You've been checking your numbers, but the same position on Amazon is frozen in time. The numbers are not moving at all.

Then they move, but in the wrong direction.

This is NOT what you expected. The publisher said they would market your book, but you come to find out what they consider marketing and what you consider marketing are apples and oranges.

This happens to a great many authors. Lots of effort goes into getting the book done, hiring what they believe is the right publishing company, and waiting and waiting and waiting.

You had an expectation of what it meant for the publisher to market your book, but you're not seeing any results. So you, the author, take control. You decide you are going to market by telling a few friends, posting on your Facebook wall or tweeting once or twice about your book. Still nothing.

Crickets

The fact is, most publishers do nowhere near the marketing that needs to happen. They may send out a media release, send a broadcast email to a portion of their email list, and post a few tweets, but beyond that, you're on your own.

If you do nothing, you will hear the ever feared sound of crickets.

Sure, you were told by the high-bred self-publishing company that the company’s marketing team would market your book, but you come to find out what “marketing the book” means to you and what it means to the company you chose for publishing your “baby” are two different things.

What is a Hybrid Publisher?

Hybrid publishers combine aspects of traditional publishing and self-publishing. Yet, even with knowing that Hybrid Publishers are a combination of various aspects of publishing , including the marketing, there are a ton of gray areas.

For a more in-depth look at what a Hybrid Publisher is and what they do, Jane Friedman gives a great perspective in her post What is a Hybrid Publisher?

“It is challenging to define what such companies have in common. They have extremely varied business models, methods of working with writers, and approaches to marketing and distribution.” Jane explains.

Going with a Hybrid Publisher gives you the freedom to get your book to market a lot faster than with a traditional publisher. Yet, there are a number of factors to consider when doing so including your costs, turnaround time, quality of delivered work, reputation of the company, do you keep all profits once you pay the company and customer care.

Before jumping in bed with a Hybrid Publisher, do your homework.

YOU Still Have to Market

Regardless of who publishes your book,  you will likely be the one to do most of the marketing. Below are five simple things you can incorporate into your overall marketing.

  1. Leverage on Reputable Book Promotion Sites

There are countless sites where you can promote your books for free. You simply submit the information to the site and in many cases, that’s it. In other cases, you may need to send a copy of the book in electronic format to a specific person.

  1. Guest Blog Posting Campaign aka Blog Tour

Blog tours are, by far, one of the best ways to gain visibility for you and your books. In a recent post, I go into a lot of detail on how this is done. In essence, you find blogs that have a similar readership as those who would enjoy your book. You contact the blog owner about you writing for their blog. The fastest way to get a yes is to have a lot of content readily available online already. This is why having your own blog, and writing on a consistent basis is a great idea. When a blog owner can do a quick search and find a lot of great content already published by you, their risk to having you write for them is minimized. The less risk for them, the better.

Learn all about Blog Tours with my Kindle Book – Blog Book Tours.

  1. Reviews

Books need reviews. It’s as simple as that. Reviews sell books. To not have reviews amounts to losing sales. Vying for the book buyer’s attention has become very competitive. One way to get through to the buyer is with lots of reviews. Make getting reviews a part of your overall marketing. It can be as simple as asking people to leave a review once they read your book. However, you can figure that for every ten people who say they will leave a review, two will actually do so. As with most things, it’s a numbers game. Lots of yeses will result in a few reviews.

  1. Develop your social media outreach

One of the greatest advantages for authors today is the ability to reach a global market by way of various social media channels. As with anything, you have to be consistent in posting. Whether it be a daily post on your Facebook wall, several tweets throughout the day, articles on LinkedIn, or YouTube videos, social media is a must do.

  1. Engage and Leave Comments on Blogs and Forums

A great way to gain visibility for you, as an authority, is to leave comments on blogs and forums. Make sure your comments are more than, “Nice post.” Put some thought into what you’re writing, add value and do NOT promote your own stuff in the post. If you add value, often people will search you out.

One of the worst offenses when leaving comments on blogs is to blatantly promote your own site, blog or books. As with anything, create value.

The more consistent you are with marketing your books, the better. It’s definitely more than a one and done scenerio. You have to make marketing a part of what you do day in and day out. When you do, sales definitely increase as do other opportunities for you, the author.

Report Shows You How

Looking for proven ways to market your book? Check out my FREE report – Hit #1 On Amazon. There are lots of great strategies on exactly what you can do to easily, simply and quickly market your book.

Click here.

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Internet Marketing Sometimes Brings out Angry, Crazy, Over-the-Top People

Yesterday I sent an email message to my subscribers about a bonus webinar I'm offering in 12 days.

There was a mistake in the message. A few people brought the error to my attention.

I appreciate the people who did this. Especially with how nice everyone was with their approach.

There's Always an Exception

Except for one guy. He was over the top livid with the mistake AND went on to tell me what a slime bag I am.

He made it clear he didn't like my approach to letting people know they can opt out from my list. It's the wording at the end of the message he took issue with.

What he was incredibly angry about and basically told me to do “strange things to myself” because of it was the word WARNING! (It's in all my broadcast messages, this one included).

He went on to tell me that I don't care about my customers and shared with me several more of his judgements about my business ethic.

This isn't the first time I've received what could be considered a downright abusive and over the top message from someone who opted in for my information. In reality, it comes with the territory.

Don't Let One Person Ruin Things for You … Most People Are Fabulous

Thank goodness these type of messages (and people) are few and far between. The majority of messages I receive are from great folks in my community.

This is the reality of marketing online. Every so often you get a bad apple. You can't let that stop you from doing what you know you should be doing.

But sadly, many people quit when they get a message like I got from this guy. Or they spend so much time wondering how they could have not upset one person, they forget about all the other people who appreciate what they do and what they offer their community.

Renewed Commitment

The upside of this experience is my renewed commitment to sharing with my community that running a business online is not always a walk in the park. Sometimes it's downright weird.

I'm also committed to letting my community know how fulfilling an online business can be.

With this in mind, I would love for you to accept my invitation to join me on June 22nd.

To find out more about the online business lifestyle, join me for the webinar I was telling folks about when I got the message from Mr. OverTheTop. 🙂

Webinar Will Be Recorded

Even if you can't make the live webinar at 10 a.m. Pacific on June 22nd, I will record it. Anyone who registers gets the replay.

If you want to join in, all you need do is go here http://powerupforprofitsbook.com/ and get the Kindle version of my book, Power Up for Profits!

The book is chock full of great information on how to get the most out of your time online. Check it out.

I'm going to share with you how to manage your state when “stuff” happens. How not to let the one bad apple distract you from the 100 great people in your community. How to make sure you don't give up because of one insult. And so much more.

I would love for you to join in.

p.s. The Kindle version is only $2.99 for a few more days. That's 70% off the regular price. After that, it goes up to $9.99. Don't miss out.

http://powerupforprofitsbook.com/

If you already registered, you made a GREAT choice. This is going to be fun.

p.p.s. Ironically, the guy didn't opt out. Making sure to not engage with his energy from this point forward, I did him the favor of taking him off my list. This way, he can find someone else to get upset with. LOL

Why Not Get Paid to Mess Around on Facebook and Twitter?

It’s amazing how much time people spend on social media with nothing to show for their efforts. What starts out as simply checking out what’s happening on Facebook or Twitter results in hours of mindless activity.

Imagine if you could make money from your social media efforts. You can… if you have a plan.

Rather than mindlessly going from platform to platform, develop a strategy for your efforts.

One of the best ways to make money with social media is to become a social media manager. What this means is that you manage other people’s social media.

What’s great about doing this is you get paid to do what you already enjoy doing; mess around on social media.

One of the fastest growing job markets, consulting opportunities, and business growth areas is in the world of social media. There is so much available, it’s simply a matter of deciding where to put your efforts.

Social media manager

To be a good social media manager, you need to understand your client’s needs. You must know what they want, need and fear. If you can understand what they want and you can determine what they need, you are well on your way to a great outcome.

Keep in mind, your clients don’t want to deal with the minutia of social media. As a social media manager, they want you to handle the details that will get them the results. They DON’T want to do the work. This is where you can misread the needs of your clients.

Bottom line is this, your clients don’t want to have to think about the details. They want you to take care of this.

You must be the easy, simple solution.

Reputation Management

As a social media manager, something you can offer your clients is reputation management. Reputation management (sometimes referred to as rep management, online reputation management or ORM) is the practice of attempting to shape public perception of a person or organization by influencing online information about them.

A huge aspect of reputation management is building market perception. Another aspect is crisis management if the need arises.

Make Life Easy for Your Clients

The simpler you make it on your clients, the better. One thing to avoid is getting caught up in trying to explain details of what you’re doing to get them a result. Giving too much detail can frustrate those who are not as passionate about social media as you are.

What they want are results. Get your clients results and they will be happy campers.

Responsibilities

As a social media manager, your responsibilities can include (but are not limited to):

  • Goal setting
  • Strategic planning
  • Content management
  • Lead generation
  • SEO
  • Digital Marketing Manager
  • Content Marketing Manager
  • Customer Experience Manager
  • Community Manager

Recommended Traits

You must be highly motivated, creative and have a passion for what you are doing. You must also make yourself visible to build your own business.

To stay on the leading edge, it’s necessary that you always be learning. Things change so rapidly in the world of social media that you absolutely must stay on top of these changes.

However, you will be well served not to be all things to all people. Niche markets and niche areas of expertise will get you, and your clients, the greatest results.

For example, there are social media managers who focus solely on working with authors. By having this type of focus, you can go deep into your area of expertise and be able to more fully serve your clients, thus getting them the results they desire.

With the growth of the publishing industry and self-published authors in particular, there is ample opportunity for a social media manager who specializes in working with authors.

Earn while you learn

Check out what one woman has managed to do in order to monetize her efforts. www.powerupforprofits.com/social

To assure it would be a great fit for those in my community interested in easy monetization of your business, I ordered the program.  I was impressed with how simple the training is, yet chock full of great ideas.

You get a ton of value for the investment.

If you decide to get this program, I will get a small affiliate commission. And yes, this is just one way you can monetize your efforts… as an affiliate.

So rather than simply spinning your wheels on social media, why not get paid for your efforts?

Conclusion

The bottom-line is this; you can spend your time on social media and get nothing for your efforts OR you can make money doing what you love; messing around on Facebook and Twitter. The choice is yours.

 

Simple strategy for generating revenues for soloentrepreneurs

Success tip! If business is slow, or you feel like you're just not advancing the way you want, for one week do this…
 
Rather than playing around on social media, watching fun videos, checking out the latest tweets that truthfully have nothing to do with improving the quality of your life, focus on building your business.
 
1. Make 10 calls per day to past, present and potential clients
2. Write an article specific to your expertise and providing a solution your community needs and wants
3. Work on a new product that will generate revenue
 
Here's an example of a good use of time.
 
I'm working with one client on her short book that is actually a business card on steroids. It will be approximately 30 – 40 pages of great information that provides answers to the top 10 questions she gets asked specific to her expertise and industry.
 
It will have all her contact information, about her section and testimonials from happy clients.
 
It is a simple process that does require focus and time to get it done. However, when she has these available and she meets someone who is a great fit for what she does, rather than give them a business card, she gives them the book.
 
Much more beneficial to the person receiving this than a business card.
 
Unit cost will be under $2 each. Potential earnings from a new client is between $10,000 – $20,000.
 
The main thing is for her to focus on the book until it's done.
 
What are you doing that will position your expertise, create massive value and generate revenues? 
 
Watching a cute cat video is likely not it.
 
Get honest with how you spend your time. The results will happily shock many people.
 

Ethical bribes create trust, “value first” and leads

If you’re like most experts, you’re looking for ways to reach more of your market in order to build trust, create value and ultimately do business.

One of the best ways to do this is to give potential customers and clients a “taste” of what you do by way of samples. Someone who perfected this model is Debbie Fields. As the story goes, when she first came up with the idea for a business Debbie tried to sell her cookies. Not many people were interested.

Rather than give up, she put a “sample” plate together, going door to door, offering free cookies to whomever was willing to take some.

Within a short period of time word got around how good the cookies were. Debbie Fields aka Mrs. Fields, quickly went from giving her cookies to reluctant strangers to building a multi-million dollar enterprise. Granted, there was a lot of work building the business, but had Mrs. Fields not been willing to give people a taste of what she offered, she would have ended up like countless others; throwing in the towel, chanting, “This stuff doesn’t work.”

Actually, giving people a sample of what you do can work great. In the online space you can offer eBooks, eReports, videos, audio files, podcast shows and articles to name just a few of the many ways to create value first before asking for the sale.

Make sure whatever you offer is of very high value. The notion that it can be low quality because it’s free is way off base. After all, in many cases this is the first touch point potential customers have with you.

Additionally, make sure that you have a clear path to where you want to take people. What is your end game? Where do you want potential buyers to end up? What needs to be put in place to make this happen?

If you’re a consultant who uses free reports to secure leads, do you have a process in place to follow up with those who have expressed interest by opting in for your report.

An obvious path would be:

  • Opt in
  • Series of follow up messages
  • An invitation to complete an assessment
  • A complimentary coaching call for those who put effort into the assessment
  • A discussion on what solutions you provide via various consulting programs

cropAuthors, a chapter of your book turned into a report is a really nice giveaway. Another idea for authors is to shoot a short video that explains something written about in your book.  Then there’s the idea of hosting a webinar on a topic that is directly related to your book.

Bottom line is this; whatever industry you’re in, if you are a service based business, offering free content is one of the best ways to gain trust, generate leads and grow your business while serving your market.

Access Hit #1 On Amazon FREE eReport.

4 Big Lies About Making Money Online

It’s one thing to create digital information products. It’s something completely different to generate revenue from your products.

In the years I've successfully created and made money from information products, I have repeatedly heard Four Big Lies.

LIE: Anyone can create (and make money from) an information product.
FACT: Most people either never start, or if they start, never finish their product. If you don’t finish it, you don’t make money.

LIE: All you need to do is create the info product and people will buy. It's the Field of Dreams Syndrome – build it and they will come.
FACT: Building it in and of itself won't make you money. Once you create it, you have to promote it.

LIE: You can make money at the press of a button.
FACT: Although there are some experts making boatloads of money at the press of a button, what you must do is have your systems in place to drive traffic and convert the traffic from tire kickers to buyers.

LIE: Get a bunch of people to become your affiliates and they will sell your stuff.
FACT: Only a small percentage of affiliates actually do anything. There are ways to increase the engagement of affiliates, but as a general rule only a handful actually do anything.

Before you can generate revenues you need to address these four lies. Additionally, you must do all you can in order for potential buyers to know your information products exist.

Before they know your products exist you need to know who they are – specifically. You absolutely must have a clear understanding of who your market is and is not.

From there you need to know what challenges and problems they have in order to provide a solution they need, want and are willing to pay for. result

Once you create the solution you need to get them into your sales funnel. Anyone who has been online for any length of time understands the sales funnel. Yet, not everyone implements an effective process.

In essence, the sales funnel is exactly what it sounds like; a method to funnel prospects and leads into customers and clients. A free offer is often the start of the process.

Although not everyone will enter your funnel by way of a giveaway, the majority will. Your prospective buyers request what is referred to as an ethical bribe; a free offering. In return for your gift they are asked to give you their name and email address.

This is a low risk opportunity for those interested in what you have to offer. Your offer can be an eBook, eReport, MP3 or short video.

However, it takes more than a free offering for people to want to continue to do business with you. Your job is to build ongoing value for your subscribers. As you build value, you build trust. From there you can make a paid offer.

This is where lots of people choke. They have no problem giving information away, but for some reason, when it comes to asking for money, they hesitate.

In the years I’ve been consulting and mentoring, I can’t tell you the number of people who’ve complained about not making any money. When I asked what they were selling many of them said they had nothing to sell! This makes no sense whatsoever. How in the world can you make money if you have nothing to sell?

The number one reason people don’t ask for the sale is fear. Fear of rejection and fear of refund requests. There are ways to minimize both.

Rejection will be minimized when you market the right information products and services to the best market for your offers. If you’re just starting out you may want to begin with low priced products in order to fully understand the process of selling online.

There are a number of essential elements to the process including sales pages, shopping carts, merchant accounts, autoresponder messages, and efficient follow up.

Another part of selling is the refund process. Regarding refunds, as much as we would like to think no one will ever ask for their money back, it does happen.

To increase conversions and trust and minimize refund rates do the following:

1. Be visible to your market. The more visible you are the more people tend to trust you. Visibility can be achieved by way of blogging, guest blogging, article marketing, interviews on web radio, teleseminars and telesummits and strategic social media activity.

2. Create the best information products you possibly can. Make the content extremely high value to the end user. Whether it be a five page report or a ten module home study course the content absolutely must be something you are extremely proud of.

3. Offer a rock solid guarantee on your information products. Have the confidence to stand behind your product with a 100% money back guarantee. Granted, there are some people who abuse refund policies, yet most consumers are honest. They appreciate the fact you are willing to offer a great guarantee.

Be clear on what your refund policy is. Don’t make it confusing or a bunch of mumbo jumbo. Make the process of understanding your guarantee as clear as possible. Will the refund be in cash or credit? What is the time frame for refunds? This must be spelled out very clearly before someone makes a purchase.

I’ve talked to many newbies who are concerned they will have extremely high refund requests. Truth be told, if you fear a high return rate you need to determine if the quality of your products is high enough.

The guarantee information outlined above is for information products, not necessarily services rendered. That is a completely separate discussion.

Although many people think the market has been saturated with too many information products, in reality we have only scratched the surface with what is possible. There is more opportunity now than ever before.

With the right vision, plan and implementation strategies you can make an incredible living by creating and selling information products.

Just one thing has to happen; you have to start right where you’re at.

To learn how to make your first $100 Online click the image below.

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