Setup a Rock-Solid Sequence to Build Your List

Often times we overlook the basics when it comes to list building. We (and me included) get distracted by all the bright-shiny-objects out there that we overlook the tried-and-true methods of consistently and systematically building your list. Simple things like “setting up the steps” we take for granted – when those are the factors that often matter most in order to massively build your list with little effort.

In this article I share critical strategies about how a rock-solid sequence is required to consistently and systematically build your list. Why? You need a well-designed sequence to ensure everything works like a well-oiled machine. Without it, you’ll never have a superstar strategy in place that allows you to go out there and build your list in droves.

The first step in a sequence is selecting the system. By system I mean email marketing system. You need to have something. Sending emails via Gmail or Outlook to your list just doesn’t cut it. I’m talking about using anything like Aweber, ConstantContact, 1ShoppingCart, Infusion, etc. You need to pay the money and invest the time to set it up and get the email templates in place. Remember, you just need to set it up once and then its there working for you. Setup your system properly (get some technical help if you need to) with the right templates and auto-responders so they are pre-canned emails that work for you, automatically. You’re not going to be in there and randomly or manually sending emails to your list when you remember to follow up with them. Your job is to find the traffic – your system has the job to convert them on your list. It has to be a “system.”

The second step in a sequence is selecting the stuff. By stuff I mean what are you actually sending them when they opt-in and beyond? If they’ve chosen your IFO and you’ve delivered that – what else are you sending them? Is it just email copy (words) or something more? Can you send them audio or video or perhaps another great piece of content that you know will help them? How are you doing it? Plain text or HTML email? Strategically think and then map out what your readers are looking for most and then deliver it to them. But – not all at once. That’s what our last step in the sequence is for.

The last step in a sequence is the actual steps in the campaign. This is one most people overlook and it’s usually the most important. The steps are a must-have when it comes to list building. You need to map out first on paper what you want to happen when someone opts-in to your list. You need to determine what emails to send and when. Think about it from the perspective of the opt-in. What number of emails makes the most sense and when? Actually map them out and write them out before you build it into the system. For example, I have a six-email auto-responder campaign when someone joins my list. It’s spread out over a 15-day period. Yes, that’s 6 emails in a little over two weeks. Why? I want them to take an action in each email and I use high-content and high-value information to trigger that action. My emails are designed to generate a response each and every time. That way my subscribers are engaged and motivated to take action.

So, it pays to develop a sequence. Set it up once and then focus on the BIG stuff – getting traffic to your site and converting your prospects to leads and leads into clients.

Until next time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Your Assignment:
What sequence do you have in place when new people join your list? Have you strategically mapped out and is it effectively working for you?. Think about the response you’re looking to generate with each and every email you send as part of an auto-responder campaign and see what emails and when you send them could be improved. Interested in finding out more about email sequences and other authentic Internet marketing strategies to help grow your online business? The Authentic List Building Coaching program can show you exactly how you can authentically add up to 1,000 new qualified prospects to your business each month. People who really “get” your message and are eager and ready to become your client or buy your products. And, you could do this authentically, quickly and consistently, without being spammy or icky, but just by being you. How would that make a difference in your life? I created this one-of-a-kind program to personally walk you through the same secrets we used (and continue to use daily) to add over 1,000 highly targeted and qualified leads to our list each month for the last 12 months. To see the presentation I created for you about authentic list building principles [IMPORTANT VIDEO], go here.

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Want to use this article on your website or your own ezine? No problem! But here is what you MUST include: Derek Fredrickson, Authentic Internet Marketing Specialist, is founder of the Authentic Internet Marketing System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to authentically market your business online, in record time…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. videos and receive his authentic internet marketing articles on attracting more leads and converting more sales online to multiply your current revenues, visit www.derekfredrickson.com.

What Is The Temperature Of Your Traffic?

In order to effectively and consistently build your list, you need to understand where your leads are coming from. With all the different traffic sources out there as well strategies to authentically bring leads back to your site to join your list, the idea of treating the source of leads differently based on their source can often be overlooked.

The truth of the matter is there are basically two different types of traffic out there. Cold traffic and warm traffic. How you treat these leads when they come to your site or even more importantly once they are on your list is critically important in terms of selling products or programs as well as the relationship you build with them over time.

First some facts:

Cold traffic is sourced from paid sources (i.e. Google AdWords): People searching for answers online and clicking ads and coming to your site. Although these prospects searching for your information usually know very little about you or your services – they are highly motivated to find information that is the answer to their question or solution to their problem. The reason they are ‘cold’ is simply because they have not been ‘warmed up’ to you yet – and there is really no basis for a relationship. They don’t know ‘who’ you are or ‘what’ you have to offer compared to anything else out there.

Warm traffic is sourced from organic sources (articles, social media, etc.) People are casually looking for you or searching for your information and then clicking your call to action (IFO) and coming to your site. They probably have heard of you (perhaps from a referral) or have been following you online (via Twitter or Facebook) – so they are already ‘warmed up’ to the idea of ‘who’ you are and ‘what’ you have to offer.

Now, how you treat them CAN be different. I say ‘can be’ because for most people the effort involved in differentiating leads from these two sources may be a lot if you don’t have a huge amount of traffic coming from either source. But, if you’re driving a large amount of traffic say from cold traffic via Google AdWords, this strategy could pay off.

If you have a squeeze page available, you can direct your cold traffic leads directly to your squeeze page. Why? Cold traffic is actively searching for answers and solutions that your information can solve for them. As a result, they are extremely motivated to get that information. Motivated to the point they are more likely to opt-in to get it (via your IFO) if you present it to them via a squeeze page. Why a squeeze page? Well, your probability for conversion will dramatically increase if you use a squeeze page to a prospect that is very motivated to get the information you have to offer. For example, we send all of our cold traffic for Client Attraction (via Google AdWords) directly to a separate squeeze page (www.clientattraction.com/cd). That page is only visible to traffic from cold traffic sources. So, our objective is aggressively encourage these prospects to opt-in (and possibly even present a paid offer for a product or program very soon after they do opt-in to capitalize on that opportunity.)

Now, for all of our warm traffic (leads coming from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, article marketing sites, etc.) we send them to our regular homepage (www.clientattraction.com). Why? Chances are if they are following us in these areas, they may already be on our list. And, we don’t want to rub them the wrong way by right off the bat pushing them into a squeeze page. If not, we still present plenty of opportunities to join our list with an opt-in form sprinkled throughout our site. And, as a warm traffic lead – they are just casually looking for information about Client Attraction – not necessarily super motivated to opt-in or buy right away. So, our objective is to build the long-term relationship with them with our stay-in-touch marketing vehicles like the weekly ezine.

Perhaps you can develop a similar strategy for yourself in terms of segmenting your traffic via cold and warm sources. You may discover you have better opportunities to build your list and ultimately convert more leads to clients and buyers!

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Don’t Let Your Prospects Abandon You

This is a very simple lesson in increasing your conversion for online sales. Who doesn’t want that? It’s a very simple process I learned a few years ago to dramatically help increase the likelihood that your prospect will actually finish what they have committed to buy – so you get more product sales and revenues as a result.

The issue at hand? Cart abandonment. What is that you may ask? Well, we’re probably all guilty of it in one way or the other. Ever gone to a website and proceeded to add items to your shopping cart only to arrive at the checkout area where you submit your credit card and billing information and you decide to change your mind? Doubts about the products you’re buying in any way shape or form may have changed your mind – but ultimately you decided AGAINST moving ahead with the purchase and backed out. That my friends, is cart abandonment.

Our role as online marketers is trying to minimize cart abandonment as much as possible for our prospects on our website and sales pages.

Instead of driving prospects to a long order form where you ask for ALL of the billing and order information at once, break it up into multiple steps.

Step 1: Ask for name and email. That’s it. It’s less intimidating and overwhelming for the prospect since they don’t have to enter all their information at once. For one, it takes less time for them to fill out and less information to enter, so almost all of them will do it. They don’t have the time to think twice about their buying decision and doubt their choice or reconsider if buying is ACTUALLY what they ultimately want.For two, the actual process of having a prospect grab their wallet to physically get their credit card and then enter it online is a lot to ask. They may not bother and decide to not proceed with buying.

Step 2: After they enter their name and email, on the next page you can ask them to fill out the additional information that is needed to complete the order such as billing and credit card information.

Now, you might be wondering why bother with this two step process and not just ask for it all at once? In some cases the more steps you ask a prospect to go through, the less likely they are to complete the sale. Yes, but do you have any idea how many prospects don’t even get to step 1 because they’ve already decided not to continue buying? I’ve heard percentages as high as 75% Ouch! That’s a lot of missed sale opportunities.

Just understanding how many prospects complete step 1 and don’t finish step 2 is huge for understanding how many missed sales opportunities are happening. Plus, with all the leads filling out step 1 and not completing step 2, you have an amazing opportunity to follow up with those prospects via email or phone to encourage them to finish the buying process. You can email them the next day re-confirming their decision to buy and encourage them to do so. Heck, if you’re offering a product with a high price point (say more than $97) it might be worth spending 15 minutes on the phone with the prospect to actually close the sale. And, with some of the feedback you get on the email and phone from the prospect about why they did NOT finish the buying process – you can understand what is missing in your sales processing to make it more compelling and engaging for them to finish the sale. That analysis is priceless!

The follow up process can be a simple 2-3 email campaign following up on those leads in an auto-responder process and perhaps inviting them to a phone conversation with you. You can even automate it using a standard auto-responder campaign in your email marketing system.

One last tip to help increase buying during the sales process: Use a very simple status bar on your order forms as they move from one step to the next. This will inform them how far along in the process they are so they know (percentage wise) how much of the process is left for them to complete. If they get to step 2 and realize the status indicates they are 75% complete, they are more likely to finish the sales process and complete the transaction so they can ultimately get what you are selling them – and more revenue for you!

Until next time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Your Assignment:
Review the current online process you have in place for allowing prospects to purchase your programs and services online. Consider including a 1 step process to capture name and email FIRST – before moving them onto the step 2 where you ask for all the other billing information. Track the results and see how many prospects never actually finished the buying process and you can follow up with them offline to close the sale. Interested in finding out more about shopping cart strategies and other authentic Internet marketing strategies to help grow your online business? The Authentic List Building Coaching program can show you exactly how you can authentically add up to 1,000 new qualified prospects to your business each month. People who really “get” your message and are eager and ready to become your client or buy your products. And, you could do this authentically, quickly and consistently, without being spammy or icky, but just by being you. How would that make a difference in your life? I created this one-of-a-kind program to personally walk you through the same secrets we used (and continue to use daily) to add over 1,000 highly targeted and qualified leads to our list each month for the last 12 months. To see the presentation I created for you about authentic list building principles [IMPORTANT VIDEO], go here.

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Want to use this article on your website or your own ezine? No problem! But here is what you MUST include: Derek Fredrickson, Authentic Internet Marketing Specialist, is founder of the Authentic Internet Marketing System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to authentically market your business online, in record time…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. videos and receive his authentic internet marketing articles on attracting more leads and converting more sales online to multiply your current revenues, visit www.derekfredrickson.com.

Mix Up Your Email Format To Get A Response

When sending emails to the people on your list, are you just a “sender” or a “marketer?” You may be wondering what the difference is – and let me explain.

Too many times people just send emails. And the emails always look the same as the last one with the same format, style, etc. It’s great for consistency, but your readers are looking for more and will likely not respond more over time. It’s like visiting a website that never changes. You want to see it in different formats and styles over time. Why? It keeps you interested and you’re more likely to respond because you’re never quite sure what to expect to see.

You need to do the same with the format of your emails if you want to get a response from your readers.

Now, you might be wondering, “how can I be different with my emails?” And, I’m not talking about email copy – that’s your job to write compelling copy. And, I’ve already shared some great tips and secrets for writing thought-provoking email subject lines in a previous blog post.

I’m talking about the “format” of your emails. You want to mix it up to keep your readers engaged, motivated, interested and responsive to what you’re sending (whether it’s free content or an offer for buying). Why? The more they are engaged and reading your emails – the more likely they will respond favorably to your content and your offers.

In this article I will reveal the three different type of emails and the pro’s/con’s of using all of them.

HTML

Here is an example of an HTML message. The characteristics are it’s very colorful and incorporates a lot of the branding. For this Client Attraction email, we had different format (bold, italics, etc.) for the some of the email copy as well as the video image embedded right in the email. Our Client Attraction “Special Announcement” banner across the top as well as the formal signature image of “Fabienne” at the bottom.

Here are some pro’s and con’s of HTML emails:

Pro’s

  • You can track open rate and/or click-through-rate
  • You can include images like company logos, photos
  • Formatting options like bold, underline
  • Highlighted text can be used to help words stand out
  • Centering and other alignment can be used

Con’s:

  • Too much graphics can distract and deter your audience (or mark your message as SPAM)
  • Not all email readers everyone can view HTML properly (especially on a mobile device)
  • Slower to load the messages
Plain Text

Here is an example of plain text email and well; it’s pretty plain looking. But, notice some techniques we used here to ensure we take advantage of the fact we’re sending plain text. One of the biggest advantages of plain text is the ability to read the email easily on mobile devices. And, most mobile devices have a very small screen with not much width. So, we shrink the width of our plain text emails deliberately so they can easily be viewed on mobile devices. And, most people like to read a shorter amount of words on a line than longer amount of words – its easier and more efficient for the reader. You can use a free service at www.formatit.com to easily decrease the width of your plain text emails automatically.

Here are some pro’s and con’s of Plain Text emails:

Pro’s

  • Simple to produce (don’t need a VA to write your email)
  • Everyone can read it properly
  • Readers on mobile email devices (a growing number) can read it easily

Con’s

  • All hyperlinks must appear in their entirety. For example: http://www.clientattraction.com
  • You can’t hyperlink words
  • No graphics
  • No font formatting such as underlining, bold, or color
  • You can’t track the open rate
Hybrid

This is my favorite as it combines a best of both worlds scenario for plain text and HTML. At the end of the day it is still an “HTML” email – but with some very clever formatting designed to make it look like and have the feel of a plain text email. And, we always hyperlink the video image so it looks like readers can click the play button right there in the email – but we hyperlink the image to direct them to the webpage where they can immediately watch the video.

The key here is to mix it up. A typical Client Attraction email campaign for a promotion we’re doing will never include the same type of emails in a row. We will do HTML to start as a big “special announcement” email and then move into the plain text while wrapping up with the hybrid. All of them are different and will surely keep our readers engaged and interested to what we offer next!

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Your Assignment:
Which email format do you tend to use over and over again? Make a plan that for your next email campaign you develop three different email formats using the HTML, plain text and hybrid formats. Track the results you get based on the response and include different strategies by mixing it up with the emails you send to your list. Interested in finding out more about email formats and other authentic Internet marketing strategies to help grow your online business? The Authentic List Building Coaching program can show you exactly how you can authentically add up to 1,000 new qualified prospects to your business each month. People who really “get” your message and are eager and ready to become your client or buy your products. And, you could do this authentically, quickly and consistently, without being spammy or icky, but just by being you. How would that make a difference in your life? I created this one-of-a-kind program to personally walk you through the same secrets we used (and continue to use daily) to add over 1,000 highly targeted and qualified leads to our list each month for the last 12 months. To see the presentation I created for you about authentic list building principles [IMPORTANT VIDEO], go here.

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Want to use this article on your website or your own ezine? No problem! But here is what you MUST include: Derek Fredrickson, Authentic Internet Marketing Specialist, is founder of the Authentic Internet Marketing System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to authentically market your business online, in record time…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. videos and receive his authentic internet marketing articles on attracting more leads and converting more sales online to multiply your current revenues, visit www.derekfredrickson.com.

Send An Email And Get A New Client

I want to share an amazingly powerful and simple email strategy I’ve personally used and shared with my private students to quickly and authentically get new clients. Now, this strategy doesn’t always get you a new client – but it does present an automated opportunity for you to have a qualified prospect on the phone where you can potentially close them into your program, product or service you offer.

It works like this: After you’ve delivered your IFO and done some very simple email follow up to ensure your new lead has consumed your IFO – you’ve done a solid job of representing the value you provide. Now, most people stop there and just add the lead to their normal stay-in-touch marketing vehicle like an ezine and deliver standard and consistent content. Great idea – but what if the new lead is wanting more? And, I mean “more” in the sense they are motivated to work with you? Very few people will reach out and contact you directly on their own to find out how they can work with you right away. So, why not invite them to do so?

How? Well, send an email inviting them to schedule a get acquainted session with you. Even better, include this email as part of your auto-responder series and automate the scheduling with a system like TimeDriver (www.timedriver.com) so it doesn’t take a lot of effort. As a result, this strategy will consistently put you on the phone with your ideal clients. Don’t get me wrong – I love the idea of getting new clients online. But often times the fastest path to cash is private clients and the quickest and most effective way to get new clients is to move them online to offline (email to phone).

Here’s an example of an email you could send (of course worded with your own style):

Subject: [Firstname], you might be wondering what’s next

Hey [Firstname],

Thanks again for joining my newsletter. I’m so happy you are here.

I hope by now you’ve been able to [insert description of your IFO here] and you enjoyed the great content I had to share.

Now, you might be thinking how can I accelerate my results or move faster ahead in the path of getting what I want? Well, I’d welcome the opportunity to chat with you for a few minutes on the phone and see perhaps if I can help.

Please feel free to click here [insert TimeDriver link] to schedule a quick call and I look forward to connecting!

Thanks,
Derek

Notice a few things about the email: It’s short and very personal. Not a formal email but casual and direct while being authentically to the point. You’re simply asking if they are interested – not forcing it onto them or drawing it out in a long- winded pitch to try and get them on the phone.

The great thing about this strategy is the simplicity. Because it’s systematic as part of your auto-responder series, you don’t have to manually email new leads. And, since you use the automatic scheduling tool, you don’t have to coordinate times and schedule appointments.

Having these “discovery sessions” or “initial get acquainted sessions” is a great way to position you in a “closing of the sale” opportunity for new leads that are highly motivated and qualified. Since they’ve just opted in and most likely have consumed your IFO (motivated) and have taken that next step to connect with you (qualified).

If you put this into place when you’re bringing in a few leads a week – you have the time to talk to these prospects for 15 minutes at a time. You can develop a good working rhythm when you’re on the phone maybe using a script or series of best questions to ask.

Once you see the volume increasing to more than you can handle – you can put in an additional step where they take another action to further pre-qualify them BEFORE you get on the phone with them. For example, send them your “About Derek” or “Interview with Derek” beforehand so they can find out more about who you work with and what they can expect. Again, it’s all part of the qualification process.

At the end of the day you will have more opportunities to close prospects into new paying clients – all from sending this one email.

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Lights, Camera… Be You!

I see it too many times. And, perhaps you have too. You know someone too well for him or her to be doing video this way. They have a certain personality in person – but when they’re in front of the camera for online video – it’s totally different. It’s like a bait and switch leaving you scratching your head and saying, “Huh?”

You know the power of online video. I don’t have to sell you on that. It helps conversion everywhere online from sales pages to landing pages to delivering content and information to your prospects and clients. So, why do so many people not get it? Authentic online video is all about being you – not someone else.

You have to inject your personality and be who you are in “real life” when you step in front of the camera – else the message and connection with your viewers will be incongruent and they’ll see right through you. Viewers want to connect with you – the real you – not someone you’re trying to be.

In this article I share some of the tips and strategies to inject personality into your videos so you will come across as “you” – allowing you to be more authentic and connect with your viewers to massively help conversion with your online videos.

Audience

It depends on your viewers. What type of videos would they expect from you? If you’re prospects and clients are the serious types (a.k.a. button shirt / tie / suit executives) than injecting your personality of you hanging in your pajamas at the home office just won’t cut it. Perhaps focus more on a business casual look and focus more on the “business” personality to make that connection. On the contrary, if you’re audience is the stay-at-home-mom market – you can totally do that and make a massive connection with your viewers. It all depends on your audience.

Brand

What do people think of when they think of you and your company? What words come to mind when they think of your brand? You want to ensure your videos are consistent with that theme and your personality will match. Part of my brand (if you haven’t guessed it already) is skiing. Can you tell that I love it? It’s part of who I am and a huge part of my personality. So, I showcase that in not only my message and my marketing – but directly as part of my videos. See below as a quick example:

Silly or Serious?

Which are you? Both? I’m a little bit of both so some of my videos are serious – about a topic I love like Internet Marketing – or silly – like the videos I shoot with my kids about skiing and having a great time. I often times see videos that look too “polished” or “scripted.” Don’t get me wrong – I love the idea of a well looking and well done video – but you can still inject your personality and be yourself so people can see that part of you and not feel like they’re watching something that really doesn’t represent you.

Expression

Videos are all about expressing yourself. Yes, you can express yourself in social media and emails and articles – but video will by far “expose” you to your audience like no other format. So, as a result you need to feel the capacity and confidence to fully express yourself and be who you are in your videos. If you make a mistake, it’s ok. It’s part of life and part of who we are.

At the end of the day that’s what your viewers want – you. So, don’t be stingy and not be who you are AND express who you are in your videos. Once you truly be yourself in front of the camera as you are in real life with your friends and the people who know you – you’ll find a stronger bond and connection with your network. This is what will help catapult you to bigger sales and bigger conversion with your online marketing.

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Your Assignment:
If you’re doing video in your online marketing (and if you’re not – you should be) how can you be more YOU in the videos? Where is your personality hiding when you step in front of the camera? Don’t be afraid to step out there and really be who you are – your viewers will connect with you even more. As an experiment you can try shooting some “personality” style videos – but perhaps share them with close friends and family first to get feedback – before you share it with your network online. Interested in finding out more about authentic video and other authentic Internet marketing strategies to help grow your online business? The Authentic List Building Coaching program can show you exactly how you can authentically add up to 1,000 new qualified prospects to your business each month. People who really “get” your message and are eager and ready to become your client or buy your products. And, you could do this authentically, quickly and consistently, without being spammy or icky, but just by being you. How would that make a difference in your life? I created this one-of-a-kind program to personally walk you through the same secrets we used (and continue to use daily) to add over 1,000 highly targeted and qualified leads to our list each month for the last 12 months. To see the presentation I created for you about authentic list building principles [IMPORTANT VIDEO], go here.
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Want to use this article on your website or your own ezine? No problem! But here is what you MUST include:
Derek Fredrickson, Authentic Internet Marketing Specialist, is founder of the Authentic Internet Marketing System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to authentically market your business online, in record time…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. videos and receive his authentic internet marketing articles on attracting more leads and converting more sales online to multiply your current revenues, visit www.derekfredrickson.com.

Set It And Forget It Using Continuity Programs

I recently had a call with a client who was very excited about the idea of having a membership site. When I asked why, the client indicated that it seemed like a great way to bring in recurring monthly revenue and move away from a one-on-model. I agreed. But, the model she was describing and what she wanted to offer was not a “membership site.” It really was a new program – a continuity program. And there is a BIG difference.

A membership site is just the format or medium you choose to deliver your content to your “members.” It can be a website to an offline newsletter to a password protected login site. But really it’s just the framework to support a new program in your offerings – a continuity program.

The distinction here is critical when deciding whether or not a continuity program actually fits into your product and offerings funnel. Only then can you choose if a membership site is the best way to deliver that program to your clients. It’s like deciding you want to launch a Mastermind (again the format) before you even know what content, information, pricing, marketing or sales approach would best support that format. You need to first decide if the program and offering makes sense before you launch the format.

To be clear – a continuity program is another way to provide your services or content in a consistent and automatic fashion. My best “real world” example is like a book-of-the-month-club where you pay a flat monthly fee and continue to receive the benefits and content of membership each and every month until basically you say stop.

Why continuity programs? They are essential in my mind for building an online business that is no longer just focused on a one-time sale model. It requires you to change your business model to include recurring and passive revenue – meaning it’s happening consistently and automatically and with very little effort on your part to make the sale. The revenue can be consistent meaning weekly, monthly or even an annual basis. Bottom-line is this – continuity programs allow you to be more profitable by allowing you to sell more to an existing client repeatedly than find and sell new customers for one-time sales.

In this article I will reveal 5 types of continuity programs and why they are all equally important so you can best determine what would work best for you BEFORE you launch your continuity program.

Here are my five continuity program types:

Perpetual

This continuity program is the program that has no end in sight. You join now and forever will you be a member – more or less – until you say stop. This model has gotten a bad reputation lately and here’s why: It’s very difficult to see how someone would remain a member of anything (let alone a continuity program) forever. Real world examples would be like Proactive skin care or Netflix DVD’s or a gym membership. Basically, you will pay every month to use that gym until you quit or they are no longer around. Chances are you’ll quit before the gym closes. It’s hard program to sell because the prospect doesn’t really love the idea that they’ll be paying for something FOREVER – no matter how good it is.

Retainer

This model is very much like the services you receive from an attorney or accountant. Members pay a monthly fee to essentially have guaranteed access to that person (you) or resources when needed. It’s designed for people to provide services over an extended period of time. But, it’s a model still focused on trading time for dollars. You are essentially receiving money from your members for the hours you provide to them. It’s designed where you are paid in advance before those services are provided and it’s ongoing (every month) until the retainer agreement is canceled.

Micro

This is a relatively new concept to continuity programs that has had some amazing success recently. Ever participated in a 10-week telephone Bootcamp or a 6-part webinar training program? That is basically micro continuity. The idea is this. Instead of trying to get someone to join a perpetual continuity program that lasts forever, why not “chunk” up your content and deliver it to your members in a piecemeal fashion where you control the timing of delivery to ensure your members get the best results. If they do, they will recognize the value in your program and continue on as a member. Now the “micro” aspect can be as short as 3-day program to a 12-month program – but the concept remains the same. Set it and forget it. Focus on marketing to get new leads and new members.

Association

This is an amazing powerful continuity program that can really expand your bottom line. You get to leverage the power of others and at the same time it positions you as the leader and subject matter expert as the creator or founder of an association. People join an association so they can feel a part of something – something bigger than themselves. It provides a sense of belonging. Providing an association is a powerful way to provide that opportunity for connection amongst the members. And, using tools like online forums is a great method to easily and efficiently provide that connection to the members. This allows them to network with each other and get value without YOU having to provide it directly. Then, you can focus on a strategy of getting more members into your association and perhaps charge a lower price point to get a higher volume.

Exclusive Club

This is all about access. The access is usually to a lead mentor (you) or key resources that are not available to non-members. A country club is your best example here. People pay a high premium to join and essentially have access to the members, facilities and events that nobody else can. Not just anyone can join which makes this model really focused on the exclusivity and access they get. As a result, you can typically charge a high premium fee for this model. You need to be sure you really stack the cool about the value they get when you have members as part of an exclusive club. It’s not just about notoriety. You can’t just charge exorbitant dues and leave them on their own as members. You need to engage with them and be there for them. They want to see that value to remain in the club and tell others about it so they can join too.

I hope this first part article helped provide an understanding of continuity programs and some of the models out there for you to choose from. In my next article I will share more about the setup, pricing and delivery of continuity programs.

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Successful Product Launch Secrets

It’s a new year and if you’re like most other business owners – you’re planning out the year to launch your programs and/or products. Perhaps you have a new program you can’t wait to get out there – or a product that you’ve recently completed that you want to sell online to your list.

But, most people make the mistake of just popping it up on their website and hoping for the day when someone will buy. Not a great strategy. Don’t get me wrong – someone could buy – but it might take months before you make your first sale.

You’ve got to launch your product big-time to make more money and get more clients!

I’m in a Mastermind with Jeff Walker (creator of the Product Launch Formula), and we were chatting about product launches and what works these days when selling something online. Fabienne and I have also had some very successful product launches here at Client Attraction. So, I figured what better time to reveal some secrets for you to put into action immediately for your next product launch.

In this article I reveal 6 successful product launch strategies you can immediately use to bring in new income and convert prospects into clients.

Now, a product launch (or program) can be really anything you’re looking to sell online. Examples can be any of the following:

  • Bootcamp
  • Tele-class series
  • Event
  • Coaching program
  • Home study course
  • Etc…

Why a product launch? It’s better and more effective to sell something. The concept of a “launch” builds up momentum and creates frenzy towards what you’re offering. It’s easier than just putting your product on your site and hoping people will eventually come around and take it.

Here are my six strategies:

Planning
You’ve got to plan ahead. You can’t just haphazardly decide to launch something and have it all magically fall into place. You need to plan ahead across all levels. Your audience – are they ripe for it? Would they want it? Have you been offering too much or too little and where does this launch fit into the rest of your planned offerings? Your communication – the dates you plan for sending emails, launching your product on your website, dates for communication to JV partners to support your launch, etc. You need to select a “launch” date and then work backward from there to plan out all the various communications you require.

Support
Without support – the launch won’t be a success. And, I mean support from ALL places. Joint ventures – ample support from JV partners or strategic alliances to help promote your launch will help build up momentum. Why? The more people who are aware of your launch will create even more anticipation. Affiliates – getting affiliates on board so they can plan ahead to notify their network of your launch and ensure it fits with their schedule. Team – can’t do it all alone. Between the promotion, planning, emails, website, product creation, etc., it takes more than just you. Get some help from your team (even if temporary help) to make it all happen. Family/friends – tell them about the launch so they can support you during what will be one of the busiest times of your business.

Anticipation
A successful launch is all about anticipation. Remember when the iPhone 4 came out from Apple and there was all this build up for months before they actually had it available for sale? That’s a killer launch tactic. You want to create the momentum of leading up to something – something really big. This creates buzz and anticipation from people who want to find out about your launch. Hint: for online product launches – it usually is a big build up to a tele-seminar or webinar where you announce your product – and finally make it available for sale. Reminding people constantly about the event date before it takes place is another strategy to create more build up and anticipation.

Creativity
You’ve got to be creative about what you’re launching. Let’s not forget the most important part of a launch is the content of what you’re actually selling. It’s got to be good stuff. But, what makes your product different? Why are people going to want it? Be creative with your marketing as part of the launch with everything from the angle/message for your tele-seminar to the videos you’re producing – it’s got to be different. Your sales page needs to be creative. How well can you present what you have?

Incentives
A launch is all about giving people a reason to buy. Additional bonuses, a strong call to action, reduced pricing, pricing payment plans, etc. These are all reasons that will help make the case for the product. You want to give people an offer they can’t refuse and using incentives is a key to trigger people from prospect to buyer. One incentive to consider is planning a preview call or webinar to showcase what you have to offer (what you’re launching.) I would never recommend launching a new product or program to your entire list. Not everyone would be interested. But, inviting people to a free call or webinar where you deliver good content and essentially “preview” what you have to offer – and giving them a really good offer at the end of the call – is a great way to launch your product and get immediate sales.

Scarcity
If you’re selling a product with limited copies or a program with limited spaces –being transparent about the limited availability will definitely increase your selling conversion. People aren’t compelled to buy if they know they can some around anytime to buy if you have unlimited copies or spots. But, if there is only a certain number available – they will take action. Now, you need to be honest here and not pretend to have 10 copies of something to sell when in reality you have 100. That’s not very authentic. If the offer is ending soon because the event starts on a certain date or a program begins on a certain date – you should leverage that and showcase it to prospects so they know they need to take action.

Follow some of thee strategies for your next product launch and you’ll be sure to increase sales and convert more prospects into buyers.

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Your Assignment:
What are your launch plans for 2011? Do you have a new product or program you’re ready to sell to your list? It’s not as easy as just putting it up on your website and hoping for sales. Map out 2-3 action steps to implement from each of my 6 launch strategies above to ensure you can effectively and efficiently launch your next product or program for the best results possible. Don’t be afraid to try something different and be creative. And, your content has got to be killer more than anything – so don’t overlook delivering an amazing value to your clients or customers!
Interested in finding out more about product launches and other authentic Internet marketing strategies to help grow your online business? The Authentic List Building Coaching program can show you exactly how you can authentically add up to 1,000 new qualified prospects to your business each month. People who really “get” your message and are eager and ready to become your client or buy your products. And, you could do this authentically, quickly and consistently, without being spammy or icky, but just by being you. How would that make a difference in your life? I created this one-of-a-kind program to personally walk you through the same secrets we used (and continue to use daily) to add over 1,000 highly targeted and qualified leads to our list each month for the last 12 months. To see the presentation I created for you about authentic list building principles [IMPORTANT VIDEO], go here.
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Want to use this article on your website or your own ezine? No problem! But here is what you MUST include:
Derek Fredrickson, Authentic Internet Marketing Specialist, is founder of the Authentic Internet Marketing System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to authentically market your business online, in record time…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. videos and receive his authentic internet marketing articles on attracting more leads and converting more sales online to multiply your current revenues, visit www.derekfredrickson.com.

Take A Risk

I felt compelled to write a quick blog post today. And, even though it’s not directly related to authentic Internet marketing, I thought it would be worthwhile to share.

Today was my first ski race. And, for those of you who have been following me on Twitter, you know how excited I was leading up to today and seeing what I could do. Now, I haven’t actually skied in a competivie ski race in over 20 years, but I knew I had to get out there and try it to see how I would do.

I didn’t win. I was close – close enough where I was in the lead for my age class leading up to the second run. However, I was going too fast and pushing a little too hard (no surprise there) and my aggressiveness got the better of me. I took a nasty tumble towards the end (I could see the finish line) and ended up not finishing the run. Although I was not hurt, I was bummed!

But, I realized that in the exercise of pushing myself and taking a big risk trying to go faster than I had thought, I was really seeing what was possible with my limits. It was exhilarating and scary at the same time. It was a risk I felt I wanted to take and glad that I did. Yes, I would have liked to have finished, and maybe even won, but my lesson is learned and it’s prepared me that much more for my next race. And yes, there will be many more races this season and for years to come.

So, the lesson is this – you gotta take a risk. Putting yourself out there whether in life or in business is absolutely essentiual to see what is possible for you to continue to grow. Without risk, we’ll never grow and expand and truly reach whatever that next level is. And for, that is definitely to win my next race. I’m more determined now than ever.

Stay tuned for my ski posts but I look forward to sharing more about authentic Internet marketing and helping you grow your online business to that next BIG level!

Until next time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

(The view from the bottom of the race course today – was an amazing experience.)

Get Clients With A “Wow” IFO

Most people think the most important starting point for converting prospects into clients is their website. They think if I just have a really snazzy looking and content rich website – that will bring the clients. Or, they think it’s all about the fantastic product or service they’re offering. But, here’s the rub. You may have an amazing website and a super product, but if you haven’t ‘WOWED’ them yet with your irresistible free offer – it’s all an uphill battle to get them as a client.

Yes, the IFO is the ‘hook’ to get your prospects to join your list – but you gotta over deliver BIG TIME. Even though your IFO is “free” – it says so much about what you have to offer for your paid products or services. Think of it this way – the IFO is the first experience your prospect has with you. You want to really give them super content and high value. You may have heard the expression from renowned Internet Marketer Eben Pagan about “pushing the free line.” The idea is this – give some of your best stuff away for free to get people to join your list and then over time – they will say to themselves:

“If the free stuff is this good – imagine what the paid stuff will be like!”

If you’ve not delivered 100% of your best content – your prospect may not get the result you’ve intended them to receive by consuming your IFO – and to them there was not a ‘big value add’ to what you’ve provided. Now what? In a way you’ve lost a big chance to spark their interest even more and as a result it’s much harder to get back them to see what’s next. Leads are most ripe when they’ve just opted-in. I like the expression they are “hot to trot” to consume and digest your IFO right away – so why not give them the good stuff right away for them to want even more?

Now, you might be wondering – what format do I use to make my IFO the best high content offer I can provide? Well, below I break down some of the most commonly used IFO’s out there and some of the pros and cons of each. I also share what I believe is the best IFO out there – and you might be surprised.

No IFO (i.e. Join my Newsletter!)

I mean really, why bother?

Free report/e-Book

Easy to produce and provide. It’s digital so no physical cost for production or shipment. But, it doesn’t carry a lot of ‘WOW’ factor since it’s so commonly used online. You really want to ensure you can ‘snaz’ it up to include images and graphics so it will ‘pop’ and people will want to read it.

Audio download

In my personal opinion, more people would prefer to listen than read. The drawback though is people love to multitask and listen to something while doing 5 other things at once. Result? You don’t get the attention from someone listening to your free audio download as opposed to reading your free report. But, people do love the convenience of instant download and playing on iPhone, computer, etc. And, you have the opportunity to demonstrate your personality and some emotion when you’re providing an audio IFO.

Video

I love video IFO’s because they are short and sweet. And, if you can really pack a wallop piece of content in the video – I say go for it. But, you need to have an excellent-looking video. Using your son or daughters cell phone flip for shooting your IFO video doesn’t cut it. The quality has to be rocking. And, like the audio – you have an amazing opportunity to establish a connection with your viewer that you can’t just get by text or audio. But, video is intimidating still for a lot of people – especially when it comes to providing some of your best content. There is the option of the DVD – but in my opinion, the production and shipment costs associated with it outweigh the benefits.

Kit

This is a relatively new one and one of my favorites. A “kit” usually consists of a number of other IFO’s packaged together. Like – a video, e-book and worksheet. Or, an audio download along with a PDF handout and checklist. It just adds more bang and value and people respond more favorably to “kit” or even “manifesto” than just those items separated out and presented individually.

Audio CD

It’s my personal favorite. Why? Audio is still the best format out there in my opinion because it has the widest mass appeal for usage. You can play it on the computer, stereo at home, car, iPod, phone, etc. People can always find a way to listen to it. And, the physical CD carries so much “oomph” factor and stands out from the rest. Example – ClientAttraction.com started using the free CD few years back and we’ve practically tripled the list each and every year as a result. It just works! Even more so than a DVD – I believe audio CD has the highest perceived value. And, you can collect physical mailing addresses for the people on your list for direct mail purposes by requesting their shipping address to send them the CD!

Now – these ideas don’t apply to all markets. The IFO that works best in one market or niche may not work best in others. For example, free IFO videos work really well in the Internet Marketing space – where Audio CD IFO works great for small business building and Client Attraction. I suggest doing some research and see what’s out there before you choose. And, here’s a trick in choosing which one is best for your market. What would you respond to most? You are most likely your ideal client / prospect – so what works for you? You’re a good case test for your own clients’ opinion and preferences.

Until Next Time… Learn It, Love It, Live It!

Your Assignment:

Consider your IFO that you have in place now to build your list. Does it really WOW them? If it’s an eBook or simple audio download, consider combining them and making it more of a “kit” which will help with conversion. Take the time to do the research and see what other IFO’s are really converting well in your niche and consider either doing the same or taking it one step more to really impress your prospects. Also, does the IFO you currently have in place contain some of your best content? Consider adding some of your best tips or information to really help your newly added leads and they will quickly become clients.

Interested in finding out more about IFO’s and other authentic Internet marketing strategies to help grow your online business? The Authentic List Building Coaching program can show you exactly how you can authentically add up to 1,000 new qualified prospects to your business each month. People who really “get” your message and are eager and ready to become your client or buy your products. And, you could do this authentically, quickly and consistently, without being spammy or icky, but just by being you. How would that make a difference in your life? I created this one-of-a-kind program to personally walk you through the same secrets we used (and continue to use daily) to add over 1,000 highly targeted and qualified leads to our list each month for the last 12 months. To see the presentation I created for you about authentic list building principles [IMPORTANT VIDEO], go here.

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Want to use this article on your website or your own ezine? No problem! But here is what you MUST include:

Derek Fredrickson, Authentic Internet Marketing Specialist, is founder of the Authentic Internet Marketing System, the proven step-by-step program that shows you exactly how to authentically market your business online, in record time…guaranteed. To get your F.R.E.E. videos and receive his authentic internet marketing articles on attracting more leads and converting more sales online to multiply your current revenues, visit www.derekfredrickson.com.