in opt-in rates
The Million Dollar
11 Tips To
get and retain clients
businesses during COVID
Direct Response Copy Girl
The New & Improved Version
Dear Valued Subscriber,
I love the technology industry, it’s always in motion just like our oceans, and often if you look away for a second, you’ll see that the scene has completely changed, and you may never see the same scene twice.
Within this industry there is the need to always be moving forward, there is a huge pressure to provide something new, customers expect a new version almost every year.
But where does that lead us? Is it possible to maintain high quality, and a high degree of innovation at that level? Or is the latest and greatest innovation just an increase in the number on the box?
For example, if you’re a mobile app software house writing apps for mobile devices, how do you keep up not only with the needs and wants of your customers, but also with the constantly changing landscape that is your device base?
What worked on last year’s device might not work as well on the new generation. But your customers will expect their “favorite apps” to work just as before when they upgrade their device.
That is both the greatest strength and weakness of the technology industry: the pace of change.
Fortunes are found and lost, companies rise and fall, or get gobbled up, in what seems like minutes.
In many ways it’s like a gamblers addiction, it’s exciting and hard to resist, but with some hard work and a lot of good fortune, your well-built little app or game could be the next goldmine, or the next productivity app that brings the platform provider to your door to buy you out and embed that functionality in their system.
Caution however: it can be very tempting to just push out a new version of a product with nothing more than a new number on the box to coincide with a new device or OS release, but better to hold back and save that new number for meaningful and innovative changes that really give your customers the improved product that they really wanted.
News & Trends
Email Marketing: Doing THIS Reduces Reply Rates by 40%
According to SalesLoft, explicitly referencing Coronavirus or COVID-19 in the subject line of an email creates a 40% reduction in reply rates.
Their suggestion: Be human, don’t lead with Coronavirus, acknowledge the situation and then get to the point.
Secondly, things are changing fast. What worked last month might not work this month, so continually be testing and adapt your approach as necessary.
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How to create Artistic Images for Your Site for Free
Use the Google Arts and Culture app to turn your photos into works of art. A new feature called, “Art Transfer” that lets you apply various art styles to your own photos has been added to the app.
To use the Art Transfer feature:
Open the Google Arts and Culture app
Tap the Camera icon in the bottom-center
Click Art Transfer.
Either take a new photo or choose one from your current photos
Choose an art style to apply to your photo.
For example, that landscape photo you took could become a bold, swirling Vincent van Gogh-like painting.
Pandemic Positive Reality Check
In the midst of all the dire news, perhaps it’s time for a positive reality check:
Most people still have jobs and an income. Even during the great depression, the vast majority of people were employed.
An economic crash doesn’t destroy wealth, it merely transfers it. The money still there, although you might need a new method to get it.
People are still spending money and always will.
Regardless of what happens – good or bad - some industries will prosper and some won’t. This has always been true and always will be true.
Economic downturns are almost always shorter than periods of growth. What you do now sets you up for the next growth period.
Some of the most brilliant minds around the world are united in working tirelessly on treatments and vaccines for the virus.
Whatever it takes, we will get through this. Humans have been through tens and likely hundreds of pandemics before, and never before did we have the resources we have now.
Being curled into a ball of fear won’t improve the pandemic. Neither will choosing to be positive and working on your business. But the second option will improve your income.
TIPS & HACKS
How to Get a 200% Increase in Opt-Ins
Here’s how a simple change to your opt-in page can give you a 200% increase in your conversions.
The BIG mistake you’re making right now that’s costing you a TON of opt-ins every single day.
This won’t apply in all situations but when it does, it’s amazing what a difference this can make.
Let’s say your affiliate is sending out your promotion to their list.
Your email, which you’ve written for your affiliate, gives all the reasons why they should opt into your list to get the special offer – or whatever it is that you want the reader to do.
You craft a brilliant email that gets them excited and ready to hand you their email address. They click the link, and what do they find?
A great big headline with a bunch of bullet points and copy, telling them why they need to hand over their email address.
Think about this…
In the first step, you SOLD them on joining your list.
They. Are. Ready. To. Join. Now.
Then they click the link and they are confronted with another sales pitch on why they should join your list.
You already sold them once. They were ready to join. But now instead of letting them join, you are trying to sell them a second time.
All it takes is ONE objection to this new sales copy and you’ve lost them.
In sales, they call this overselling. Once the customer gives you a buying signal, you STOP SELLING and you let them BUY.
Here’s the change you should make:
In every case where you are selling them on taking the action BEFORE they get to your opt-in page, change the opt-in page to a very simple black and white form. At the top of the form is what they are signing up for, such as a workshop, webinar, etc.
For example, it might say, “Traffic Multiplier Workshop.” In this case, you would give the time and date: Tuesday, May 12th, 6pm EST. Then there’s a field for their name, a field for their email address, and a button that says, “Register for the event.”
It’s that simple.
This works especially well if you’re using solo ads and you’re paying by the click. Send them a long email that does an excellent job of prequalifying them, and then send them to a super simple sign up page. Your solo ad click conversions can go from 20% to 50% or 60% with this one change.
Just give them all the info they need within the solo ad itself, and then send them to as plain and boring of a page as possible, so they have nothing stopping them from doing what they intended to do – sign up.
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The Million Dollar Notebook
I was reading a classic the other day – The One Minute Entrepreneur.
This is a distillation of the first couple of chapters, including the very same notebook idea that so many self-made people have used to build their fortunes.
There once was a young man in high school who found himself in jail, accused of having illegal drugs. This student wasn’t a bad person by any means. He had friends, decent grades, a girlfriend who loved him and a place on the football team.
But he was caught hanging out with the wrong crowd, and now he sat in a jail cell, realizing his choices weren’t necessarily the best ones he could have made.
When his father bailed him out the next morning, the young man explained what happened and said he was sorry. His father, a wise man, didn’t get angry. Instead, he offered this advice to his son:
“At any given time, you are becoming the average of the five people with whom you are most closely associated. Don’t ever underestimate the importance of whom you choose to be with.”
And so the boy took a long hard look at his closest friends and decided that he needed to spend more time with some of them, and far less time with others.
I wonder if this is true online as well. Perhaps if we pay attention to the websites we visit, the blogposts we read and the videos we watch, we gain the knowledge of the sites we visit the most.
Perhaps we would be best served by spending the vast majority of our online time visiting sites that belong to the people we’d most like to emulate.
And of course we can become friends with people who are already achieving the things we want to achieve, too.
Did you know there are studies that show if you spend time with people who are heavier than you, that you will gain weight? And the converse is true as well.
Then it makes sense that if we spend time with people who are better at building online businesses and making money than we are, we will grow in that direction as well.
Back to our story…
Then the boy’s coach offered his advice as well:
“Keep a notebook and take a minute every now and then to write down the important things that happen and the major lessons you learn. Write down the things that you discover, the thoughts you have about important decisions you make and your ideas as they come to you. Distill the most important items down to their essence so that you can read them over and over again.”
The young man did exactly that through the rest of high school and college. Because his dream was to run a million-dollar internet business and one day sell it for 7 figures, he wrote down everything related to business, online marketing and motivating online visitors to become a part of his tribe.
Then just before his graduation, when he had filled 3 notebooks full of important lessons and ideas, he went to a motivational seminar. Electrified by the speakers, he asked one of them if they could talk.
After a few pleasantries, he asked the speaker if it was true that it’s not what you know, but WHO you know that counts.
“That cliché has been around for a long time,” said the speaker. “Who you know can be important, but what matters is who knows YOU and what they think of you – your confidence, your professionalism and your belief in what you are selling. Because we are all selling all the time, whether it’s an actual product, an idea or ourselves.”
And isn’t that true online as well? You can know everybody online, but it won’t matter if they don’t know you. But if your best prospects and your customers know you, like you and trust you, then can be successful beyond your wildest imagination.
Associate with people you admire and can learn from.
Keep a notebook of the wisdom you read, hear, and learn, and distill that learning into its essence for easy retainment and utilization in life.
It’s not who you know that counts, it’s who knows you and what they think of you.
This young man went on to build a multi-million dollar business using these three concepts, along with an idea he wrote down in his notebook during his junior year of college.
A few more tips from the book (buy the book to get ALL of the tips – these are just a tiny fraction)
You can get what you want in life if you help other people get what they want. – Zig Ziglar
What is right is more important than who is right.
To create a successful business, you must first master the basics.
Always visualize your desired outcome ahead of time.
In online marketing and every other business, you are constantly on stage – so act like it.
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7 Ways to Optimize Your Zoom Meetings
Zoom gives you the capability to hold face-to-face meetings, show what’s on your screen to everyone else on the call, pass control from one person to another and record the call as a video.
But did you know Zoom is capable of even more than that?
Here I’ve created a list of 7 things you can do on Zoom to get you started.
Create recurring meetings with saved settings and one URL
Okay, you knew about this one, right? When you schedule a meeting, tell Zoom if the meeting is weekly, monthly, etc. You can lock in the settings to have them in place every time the meeting takes place.
But what if your group regularly meets but not at regular times? Choose the option called “No Fixed Time.” You’ll be able to use the same settings and same URL with the same group, no matter when you get together.
Zoom gives you the capability to hold face-to-face meetings, show what’s on your screen to everyone else on the call, pass control from one person to another and record the call as a video”.
Automatically schedule meetings and let people know about them.
You can connect your scheduling app (such as Zapier) with Zoom and your calendar.
Then when someone books an appointment in your scheduling app, it automatically creates a new Zoom meeting and adds it to your calendar.
Do you have a team? Use a chat app like Slack to share the meeting details with your team via the chat app.
Know who attended
To get a report after the meeting is finished listing everyone who attended, go to Zoom Account Management > Reports Section > Usage Reports > Meeting and then select the report type and date range.
This only works is you’re the meeting host, you’ve enabled Usage Reports or you’re an account administrator or owner. And you also need a paid plan.
Record the call as a video
Did some people miss the call? Or would you like a record of the meeting?
To record, choose if you want to use local (store yourself) or cloud option. Cloud option is for paying members only and allows people to stream the video in their web browser when it’s ready.
To record, it pays to optimize your settings beforehand. If you’re doing broadcast-style where only the host appears, set Zoom to record only the host’s audio and video. If it’s a collaborative meeting, be sure Zoom is recording everyone.
Screen share with collaborative annotation
Screen sharing allows the host to display what’s on their screen to everyone else on the call, and annotation tools let anyone or everyone on the call draw and highlight what’s on the screen.
If you’re not the host and you want to annotate, select ‘view option’ from the top of the Zoom window and then choose ‘annotate.’ A toolbar will appear with your options for texting, drawing, making arrows and so forth.
The host can click ‘save’ on the toolbar to capture the completed image with annotations as a screenshot.
“I” is invite. Press Alt + I (Windows) or Cmd + I (macOS) to jump to the invite window. Grab the link to the meeting or send invites to others via email.
“M” is mute everyone but you. Press Alt + M (Windows) or Cmd + Ctrl + M (macOS) when you’re the meeting host and want to mute everyone else.
“S” is share. Press Alt + Shift + S (Windows) or Cmd + Shift + S (macOS) to share your screen.
“R” is record. Press Alt + R (Windows) or Cmd + Shift + R (macOS) to record, and Press Alt + P (Windows) or Cmd + Shift + P (macOS) to pause or resume recording.
“A” is to mute and un/mute your own audio. Press Alt + A (Windows) or Cmd + Shift + A (macOS).
“V” is to turn video off and on. Press Alt + V (Windows) or Cmd + Shift + V (macOS).
To enable shortcuts outside of Zoom, go to Settings > Keyboard Shortcuts and select ‘enable global shortcut.’ This will allow you to use the keyboard shortcuts regardless of what window you’re in.
Touch Up Your Appearance
If you want to improve your appearance, go to settings > video and check ‘touch up my appearance.’ Zoom will soften the focus on your camera, making you look 10 years younger. Okay, maybe not 10 years but it’s worth trying.
And while you’re at it, you can also change your background. If you don’t want others to see your messy house, or maybe you’d like to pretend you’re on a tropical island, just go to settings > virtual background and choose your background.
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Double Your Course Sales With This Simple Strategy
This will work for most any information product that you deliver over time.
For example, if you’re having a course with weekly classes, a training program in which you release one video every so often, or anything that is not released all at once, here is how to double your sign-ups.
Let’s say you’re offering a course with weekly live training for $97. You promote your course and get as many paid sign-ups as you can. You might give this option a Sunday night deadline.
If you want, you can extend the deadline by one day.
Then on Tuesday, send an email to everyone on your list telling them how they can try your course for FREE. They sign up for $0 up front, and a $97 payment on Friday. They come to the first session on Wednesday evening, and at the end of the session you tell them how to cancel payment if that’s what they want.
Send this email out two or more times on Tuesday and again on Wednesday. You should see plenty of takers for this offer, especially if you built lots of value during your promotions the previous week.
Be sure to give tremendous value on Wednesday evening AND give them plenty of teasers about what they will learn in the coming weeks. You’ve got to do both of these things well, but if you do, you should see very few cancellations.
And that’s it! You’re getting as many paid in full sales up front as you can, and then going back to everyone who did not purchase and letting them sign up for $0 to join your first training.
I’ve seen paid sales double using this simple technique.
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11 Tips To Get & Retain Customers
You already know that it’s far easier to sell to a customer you already have, than it is to get a new customer.
Then again, it can sometimes be easier to get a new customer than to retain the old ones, depending upon the mistakes you’re making. But if you can avoid the mistakes and do things right the first time, your job will be that much easier and customers will stick with you through thick and thin.
Here’s how to hook those customers you’ve worked so hard to win over, so they become loyal fans and die-hard buyers for life.
1: Get Their Email Addresses
I’m sure you’re already doing this, right? But just in case you’re not, capture your customers’ email addresses through any means possible, including bribes (known as lead magnets.)
Then stay in touch via email, keeping them updated on new products, showing them how to get the most out of the products they’ve purchased, sending special tips and gifts and discounts, and basically staying in their level of awareness until they are ready to make their next purchase.
2: Share Their Values
Being generic milk toast is not going to cut it these days. You’ve got to have a personality in your marketing as well as sharing your values to attract customers who feel the same way or look at the world through the same lens as you do.
According to one study, 64% of respondents said they continue to patronize the same businesses in part because of shared values. Tell them what you stand for and let your fans come forth and follow you and your brand.
3: Use Social Proof
Always, always, always be collecting customer testimonials and stories from your customers of how your products have improved their lives.
Social proof is perhaps the very best way for new prospects to learn about your products and services because it breaks down sales barriers and almost instantly takes you from unknown to trusted expert.
4: Provide Awesome Customer Service
This one is so basic that we shouldn’t need to say it. Then again, maybe we better. When a paying customer writes to you with a question, complaint or even suggestion, ANSWER them. It doesn’t much matter if it’s you or your virtual assistant, so long as they hear back from you and get awesome service.
Is there a problem? Fix it. It doesn’t matter if the problem happened because of the customer’s mistake; fix it anyway.
Make it easy for customers to get in touch with you with a clearly displayed email address, phone number and social media account. Wow them by going above and beyond. And never, ever get into a conflict of any kind on social media with a disgruntled customer.
Fix the problem beyond the customer’s expectation and you’ll never have to worry about legitimate negative word-of-mouth.
5: Be Transparent
Is the product not going to ship on time? Is there a problem or some sort of bad news? Did you get sick and can’t do the live training?
Be transparent and tell your customers what’s happening. Everyone knows that stuff happens, and by keeping your customers in the loop you’ll also be keeping your customers happy.
6: Create a Tribe
More than just a random jumble of customers, you want to create a tribe with a real sense of community. Apple’s products are not necessarily better than others, but because of the sense of being a part of the tribe, they enjoy extremely loyal followers who will stand in lines for hours to pay princely sums for products with the Apple name.
Ask your customers to share stories, testimonials and pictures of themselves using your products. Give your tribe a name, as well as a name for members of the tribe.
Encourage your customers to act as your own brand ambassadors on social media and let them feel like they are part of a community of like-minded people.
7: Exceed All Expectations
You’ve heard the term, “Under promise, over deliver.” Strive to always exceed expectations. If you’re selling an info product, include a special unadvertised bonus. If you’re answering a customer service email, reply back in 2 hours instead of the stated 24 hours. If you’re offering a service, offer more service than you advertised.
Find small but meaningful ways to exceed the expectations of your customers and they’ll be happy to buy from you again and even tell their story on social media.
8: Be Painfully Honest
I say ‘painfully,’ because sometimes this hurts. But if you made a mistake, own up to it immediately and then correct it.
If you’re called out on social media for making a mistake, don’t get sensitive about it. Own up to the mistake by taking full responsibility and correct it immediately.
Does your product have a shortcoming? Admit it and then find a way to fix it.
“It’s been pointed out to me that I forgot to cover ‘how to set up your payment system’ in the course. For everyone who has sent me a message about this, you’re right. I totally forgot to cover this crucial step of the process, and that’s why I’m recording a brand new video that answers all your questions about taking payments in your new business. Thank you everyone for letting me know about this omission. I’ll be sending the video out to you tomorrow morning, so please watch for it.”
See how easy that is?
9: Be the Expert
You can be a sales person or you can be an expert. Frankly, being an expert will get you many more sales than simply being the sales person.
Let’s say someone wants to purchase a course on how to successfully publish on Kindle. If you’re simply putting your sales letter out there for your course, you’ll get a few sales.
But if you’re also teaching and answering questions through blogposts, social media posts and webinars, people will get a chance to see that you really are the expert.
Now making sales to both new and established customers gets a whole lot easier.
10: Make Your Content Interesting
You might be able to grab the first sale by simply stating facts, but to keep customers interested and reading your content and buying more of your products, you’re going to have to be interesting, too.
Think of dating – anyone might be enamored of you on the first date (or the first sale.) But if they realize you’re boring, they’re soon going to tire of you and move on.
However, if you’re interesting, they’ll want to keep seeing you (and buying your products.)
11: Establish an Insider’s Club
This is a simple concept that can dramatically increase sales to existing customers.
Once someone makes a purchase, they are now in your insider’s club. From that day forward, they get discounts on every product you offer. It could be as small as 10% or perhaps as high as 50% or more – it’s up to you.
The benefits here are:
First, they feel like they are part of the ‘in’ group or tribe, and they stay tuned to your emails and offers because of it.
Second, knowing they’ll get a discount on future products can incentivize them to make that first purchase.
Third, they’re more likely to purchase from you than from an affiliate.
Fourth, you can offer your new products to your insider’s club members first to get testimonials which you’ll use when you launch to the general public.
Fifth, those insider’s often make great affiliates and brand advocates.
All 11 of these tips are dynamite for customer retention, but did you notice the last one? It’s especially potent and done correctly, it can grow your business exponentially with only a very little bit of extra work on your part.
Vimeo Vs. Youtube -
What Is The Difference?
Vimeo is YouTube’s closest competitor, but it’s not a YouTube clone. Because there are very real differences between the two, you might find that Vimeo is sometimes the better choice for your videos.
Prestige – When someone says, “YouTube video,” what do you think of?
And when someone else says, “Vimeo video,” what do you think of now?
Anything and everything is on YouTube. There are no quality filters to speak of which is why anything and everything is uploaded there, including junk.
But Vimeo is strict about what it allows to be posted.
This is good and bad for you. While you can’t post just anything on Vimeo, what you can post will automatically be considered higher quality and more prestigious than if you posted it on YouTube.
Staff Pick Potential – Vimeo loves high-quality and one of the ways they show it is to select certain videos to receive the Staff Pick badge of honor. Entire video careers have been launched after being discovered by curators on Vimeo.
Technical Quality – YouTube processes 500 hours of footage every single minute. Is it any wonder why they have to prioritize compression speed over compression quality?
But because Vimeo has stricter guidelines for acceptable videos, its processing load is far lighter which means the quality is far better.
Try uploading the same video to both YouTube and Vimeo at the same resolution, and then see which version looks better.
Better Audiences – because Vimeo is picky about what can be uploaded to their site, it attracts a more sophisticated and engaged audience than YouTube.
Youtubers are notorious for short attention spans, whereas Vimeo viewers will watch entire films of slower, more thoughtful content.
Even the comments are better on Vimeo, with more mature, insightful thoughts being left for the video creator.
Features – Vimeo has some practical advantages over YouTube as well. For example:
Replace video but keep URL: If you update a video on YouTube, you lose all of your likes, comments and stats. But on Vimeo, you can upload a new video while keeping the same URL, the same comments, stats and likes, and without breaking any embeds on third-party sites.
Passwords – Vimeo lets you set passwords on any video, so that only people with the password can view it. YouTube does not have this feature.
Membership videos – You can set which domain(s) are allowed to embed your videos on a per-video basis. This way you can hide your videos from the public and only allow access on a particular site, such as a membership site.
Branding the web player – Embedded Youtube videos always look the same and they always end with a myriad of suggestions you did not choose. But Vimeo lets you alter the appearance of the web player with your own logo and branding, making it look fantastic on your website.
Pay-per-view – with Vimeo on Demand, viewers pay to watch your videos. You keep 90% of the revenue and there are no ads.
You pay for no ads – While YouTube is funded by ads, Vimeo has several video plans to choose from, starting at free and going up to $75 a month.
Between YouTube and Vimeo, which is the right choice for you? That depends on your goals. If you want to crank out videos quickly to reach as many people as possible, YouTube is likely your choice.
If you want to embed to a membership site, charge for quality content, restrict who sees your videos or focus on short films, documentaries and interviews, then Vimeo might be your answer.
With YouTube you can get more views, and with Vimeo you can get more engagement. You decide which one works for you, or better still, use both as needed.
The 10% Rule To Reach Any Goal In Business & Life
There is an old piece of advice that says you should always, ALWAYS pay yourself first. Take 10% off the top of everything you earn and save it, invest it and most of all, keep it for yourself.
You save this 10% off the top before you pay any bills, before you pay taxes, before you buy food or pay the mortgage.
And over time, that 10% will add up to significant money and even financial freedom.
But there’s another 10% I want to talk about, and it’s time.
If you’re spending the best 10 hours of your day working for someone else, or even staying home with the kids during this unusual time in history, I’d like to suggest the following:
Spend the first hour of every day working towards your big goal. If your big goal is your own business, then spend that hour making progress on your business.
Nothing gets in the way of this hour because this hour belongs to YOU - not to the kids, your spouse, the boss or to your emails.
You are paying yourself first with this hour. I’ve seen people build entire businesses and quit their jobs by being iron-clad adamant that this hour – every single day – is used for nothing but growing their business.
Maybe your goal is fitness oriented. Use the hour to work out. Or maybe your goal is learning a language or new skill. Whatever the goal, commit the first hour of the day – when you are freshest and the ideas and solutions come quickly – to work towards your goal.
And six months from now you’ll probably need a new goal because you will have (finally!) achieved your current goal. And there you have it – 7 ways to start earning money online while you’re self-isolating at home.
22 Businesses That Are Booming During COVID-19
Here’s a list of businesses that are doing exceptionally well during this pandemic:
Nearly anything and everything healthcare related.
Nearly anything food related except some restaurants - grocers, farmers’ markets, produce stands, convenience stores
Restaurants that deliver or offer takeout
Food cultivation such as plants, seeds, farming
Organizations providing social services
Media of every type – newspapers, television, radio and internet
Hardware stores – people are fixing things at home and doing projects they’ve been putting off
Shipping and mailing services as well as delivery services
Distance learning – including and especially online courses of every type
Business that supply or support working from home (think Zoom)
Survivalist info, kits, food, tools, water filters, camping gear
Pandemic supplies – obvious items like masks and hand sanitizer are selling like crazy online
Toilet paper – both in stores and purchased online
First aid supplies
Gun supplies and security services – got to protect that TP, right?
Therapy and life coaching
Home activities for kids to keep their parents sane
Almost anything pet-related – pets still need food and care, plus people are spending more time with pets and are looking for toys, training, etc.
Stocks and currency trading – people need help making sense of what’s happening in the markets and what to do next
Marketing advice and help for struggling small businesses that are trying to survive
Online businesses, especially those that supply the physical products people want, and those that are teaching new skills like how to build an online income
Demand For Good News Has Increased Online
What is it that readers are searching for like crazy right now?
Hint: It’s not toilet paper.
It’s not the latest novel or diet book, either.
According to National Geographic, demand for this right now is unlike anything they’ve seen before.
Upworthy has seen an unprecedented level of growth for this in the past four weeks, with 65% growth in followers on Instagram and 47% increase in on-site page views in March.
We are, of course, talking about good news.
Desire for uplifting stories and news has seen unprecedented levels.
At the end of March, actor John Krasinksi introduced his weekly show, “Some Good News” on YouTube and within a week had over 1.5 million subscribers and 25 million views.
The Washington Post and The New York Times have both increased their good news stories to meet unprecedented demand.
While a good movie or book can distract people from the pandemic, what people want more than distraction is a genuine sense of hopefulness. They want to see people coming together and helping each other, as well as any glimmer of positivity from what’s happening such as pollution levels decreasing.
Can you spread some good news among your readers? You might find it becomes the most popular section on your website and your most shared content on social media.
Life In Crisis - Done Is Better Than Perfect
With the world essentially turned upside down right now, maybe it’s a good time to forget about getting things perfect and instead simply concentrate on getting them done.
Whatever your specialty is, reach out to people on social media and see who you can help. I think you’ll find that people are much more open right now to receiving help from a kind stranger.
Offer two ears to listen and one mouth to offer solutions to whatever they are facing. In other words, do more listening than talking.
And when you find someone who needs more help than just a social media chat, offer your services. You don’t need fancy sales pages to do this, you simply need to be yourself and show that you can truly help them.
Whatever it is that you are choosing to do right now, focus far more on getting it done than getting it perfect.
And when the crisis is over, I think you’ll find this new skill of getting things done quickly by whatever means you have on hand will continue to reap rewards for you.
How To Profit From Members Stealing Your Content
Okay, to be fair your paid members aren’t truly ‘stealing’, even though it might feel that way to you.
I recently joined a paid monthly membership that consists of hundreds of videos. As I was browsing the site, a pop-up box with a one minute video appeared, showing me how to share videos with my friends.
I paid to be a member. My friends are NOT paid members. And yet I can send them a link to any video I choose with the full blessing of the membership site company.
Now why would they let me do that?
One reason – it’s the best possible advertising they could have, and it costs them NOTHING.
Do you have a paid membership? Can you let your members share a video or module or lesson of their choosing with a friend?
You might need to get a special script to make this happen, but if you’ve got great content, it could be well worth the one-time price.
Use The Products They Sell?
I received an email from someone promoting a plugin that helps a website become compliant with the American Disabilities Act (ADA). It looks really easy to use, and if it conforms to the ADA law, then I’m sure it would have been a good deal.
But here’s where it all went wrong for me. After watching a short video on how the plugin works and what it looks like when it’s installed on a website, I searched high and low on the sales site for the symbol that says the plugin is there.
And it wasn’t there.
If this person is telling me how fantastic his plugin works and how foolish I would be to not have it on my own site… then WHY is it not on his site?
Obviously, I didn’t buy it, because if he doesn’t believe in it enough to put it on his own site, why would I want it on mine?
It’s bad enough when affiliates don’t use the products they recommend. But when product creators aren’t using their own products then maybe it’s time they promote something they do believe in.
Joining us this time is someone who I'm really excited to be talking with. She's already been called the world's best female copywriter by her industry peers, and is the founder of the highly influential business Direct Response Copy Girl.
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” - Maya Angelou
“Whether you believe you can or you believe you can’t, you’re right.” - Henry Ford
"If you look at what you have in life, you'll always have more. If you look at what you don't have in life, you'll never have enough." -- Oprah Winfrey
"I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination." -- Jimmy Dean
"Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!" -- Audrey Hepburn
"To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart." -- Eleanor Roosevelt
"Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears." -- Les Brown
"I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. Twenty-six times I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed." -- Michael Jordan
“Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” – Albert Einstein
"I am not a product of my circumstances. I am a product of my decisions." -- Stephen Covey
"The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any." -- Alice Walker
THE MILLION DOLLAR SKILL
How to Earn Trust, Scale Intimacy and Profit
Earning trust on the internet has never been more important than it is today. Without trust, you cannot get followers, subscribers and customers.
And yet pervasive skepticism coupled with short attention spans rule the online world. Where you once could write a 3000 word article and win people’s attention, these days it can take a more personal touch to connect with strangers and turn them into fans.
And podcasting allows you to do exactly that.
With podcasting, you speak directly to your prospect. Your personality can shine through in your voice in a way that is impossible with the written word.
You don’t need to be some fancy speaker, either. You just need to be yourself, to relax, to have a good time and to give plenty of value to your listeners.
Podcasting is easier than creating great looking videos. And your listeners can consume your podcasts while they are doing other things like driving, walking or doing chores.
But Do I Really Need a Podcast?
You already have a website, a blog and a social media presence. You might even have a YouTube channel chock full of your own videos, too. Do you really need a podcast, too?
A podcast is a great alternative to video because people can listen to it on the go or while they’re doing something else.
Podcasts can increase your traffic. For example, when you interview someone on your podcast, they’re likely to tell their readers and followers about the podcast, thereby sending you traffic.
Having a podcast can work wonders for building a better relationship with your audience. When they can hear you, they get to know you and like you. They feel more engaged with you and the topic and think of you as being an expert they can trust.
Podcasts can be easier to create than written material or videos. To write an hour’s worth of content can take several hours, whereas recording an hour-long podcast takes an hour plus whatever time you spend getting a guest or outlining your topic.
In short, podcasts help to build your audience, your brand, authority and trust, all without the same effort and ability that writing requires.
What’s Your ‘Why’?
Before you start a podcast, we need to get a couple of things clear, and the first one is figuring out why you even want a podcast.
Is it to get more customers and sales?
Is it to establish yourself as an authority in your niche?
Is it to build relationships with other authorities in your niche?
Is it just for fun, like a hobby you’re passionate about?
While you may have several reasons for podcasting, it’s important to know what they are, because when you know why you’re podcasting, it will be much easier to stay motivated to keep your podcast going.
Who is Your Listener?
Who is the ideal person listening to your podcast? Until you know who you’re targeting and why you’re doing the show, you’ll have a difficult time growing an audience.
Creating a listener avatar is a good way to decide on exactly who you are targeting.
For example, if you’re a dietician, perhaps your avatar is a 42 year old woman with two children and a career who spends 50 hours a week working and commuting while still taking care of the kids and the home. She’s 25 pounds overweight, tired, doesn’t get enough sleep and worries that her health is deteriorating.
If your topic is investments, your avatar might be a 35 year old professional who makes six figures but isn’t putting anything away for retirement yet because she spends her money as soon as she makes it. She realizes she needs to do something now, but she doesn’t know where to start or who to listen to.
Once you have your avatar, you’ll be able to keep your podcast focused and on track, creating engaging content perfectly suited to your audience.
Can You List Your First 15 Episodes?
One of your major goals when doing a podcast has to be providing value to the listeners. Are you entertaining them? Informing them? Both? Or something else?
Your listeners need a reason to listen. They won’t tune in to hear someone ramble about their day or their childhood unless it’s entertaining in some way, or highly informative.
But they will tune in to hear how they can achieve a goal of theirs or solve a problem.
And you need to have enough subject matter to talk about as well. If you can spill all of your secrets on how to lose weight in one or two episodes, then you don’t have a podcast. But if you can bring on guests to talk about other aspects of health, then perhaps you do.
Write down your first 15 potential podcast topics.
Have you got them? Now write down your next 50.
You might want to use the internet to brainstorm. These topics can change later, but the point is to see if you’ll have enough material to sustain a podcast beyond the first few episodes.
Now look at your list.
Are these the sort of topics you can see yourself discussing over the coming weeks and months without getting bored or burning yourself out? If not, you might consider getting a new niche and perhaps even a new audience.
Naming Your Podcast
You’ve got three main choices when choosing your podcast name.
You can choose a clever or catchy name such as 99% Invisible, Fresh Air or The Moth. Names like these don’t tell you what the show is about, but you can always add a tagline to help clarify the topic.
Your second option is using a descriptive name such as Football Weekly or Money Matters. This lets people know up front if they might be interested in your show, and it can make it easier to reach your target audience.
Your third option is using your own name. Unless you are already famous, if you choose to use your name, then you’ll want to add a descriptive tagline.
How Long Will Your Podcasts Be?
There’s no right answer for this, other than to make your podcast long enough to convey the information and short enough to never be boring.
Some podcasts are consistently 20 minutes long while others are an hour. If you can fit all of your information into 20 minutes, there’s no need to stretch it longer.
But if you’ve got so much great info that it takes an hour, don’t chop it down to 20 minutes just because that’s what some other podcaster does.
You might survey your audience after a few months to see what they think of the length of your podcasts. And it’s good to be somewhat consistent in length, so that you listeners have an idea of what to expect.
How Often Will You Podcast?
People tend to plan according to days of the week. Thus, is you’re able to put out one podcast each Tuesday, for example, then listeners will know when to expect your next episode.
The best schedule is the most frequent one that you can stick to and that you have enough content to fill.
Another option is to podcast in bursts based on themes. You choose a theme for a series of podcasts – driving website traffic, for example – and then you create these podcasts within a few days and air one a week.
This is a great way to get plenty of podcasts done quickly before moving on to something else. You might create a dozen podcasts in January on one topic, release one per week, and not make any new podcasts until late March to get ready for an April to June release.
You can also do seasonal podcasting based on the time of year. Perhaps you start in September, take a break over the holidays, pick it up again in January, and finish in May, much like an American school year.
Naming Episode Titles
Spend as much time naming your episodes as you would naming a blogpost or a book. A great title will always get you more listeners. Make it clear what people will learn on your episode, and remember that iTunes allows searching by episode name, so be sure to use your main keyword in the title.
And never, ever get lazy and simply name your episodes, “Episode 1, Episode 2 etc.” No one is going to listen to a podcast to figure out what it’s about.
Choosing Your Podcast Format
You can choose one format to use every time or mix it up and do any or even all of these formats – it’s up to you.
Going solo – this is the monologue show, and it’s you and only you. You don’t need to rely on anyone else when you go solo and it builds your authority and credibility in your subject.
The downside is it that’s it’s just you, without any help or input from someone else. Can you talk non-stop for 10 minutes or more every time you do a show? If so, you might try this method out. To dispel the feeling that you’re talking to yourself, imagine your listener is sitting across from you when you record.
Co-hosted – team up with a colleague to chat about hot topics and give great info. The benefits of having a co-host are many. You can discuss, debate, build on each other’s thoughts and create a great listening experience. This can work especially well if you hold different viewpoints or strengths but still respect each other’s opinions.
Co-hosting means you’ve got to agree on topics, find times to record when you are both available, be respectful of each other, and decide in advance who owns the podcasts and how you will split any income from the podcasts.
The Interview Show – this is an awesome format because you get to interview people in your industry about what they’re doing, what they think and what new ideas they have, as well as discussing their thoughts on the latest developments and hearing their stories.
This is also a great way to build your audience because when followers of your guests listen to the show, they may subscribe.
The challenges are that you need to find and book guests to your shows, as well as getting good at conducting interviews. Interviewing is not as easy as you might think, and it does take some skill to do your research, ask the right questions, listen carefully to the answers and compose follow up questions on the spot.
Roundtables – you’re the host with several guests and one topic. It’s probably best to get several one-on-one interviews under your belt before attempting this format.
The positive is you get opinions and information from several sources at once on one topic. The negative is that it can be difficult to differentiate who is speaking on a podcast when there are several people.
Plus, you have to find a time when everyone is available for the podcast, which can be difficult.
Creating Your Cover Art
Your cover art is the first impression most people will have of your podcast. Think of any podcast app you’ve perused – what did you notice first? Most likely it was the cover art, followed closely by the podcast title.
The cover art is usually also the image someone sees when you share your show on social media.
If at all possible, podcast artwork should:
• Stand out
• Visually communicate the podcast subject
• Be designed in a variety of sizes to look good everywhere
• Limit word use to fit on small images
• Avoid overused images like microphones and headsets
Here is an excellent overview from Buzzsprout on designing your podcast artwork
If you have money to spend, then 99designs is perhaps the best place to get your artwork done. Multiple designers will offer their designs based upon your concept. You then pick the ones you like and have them refined even further. Cost: $199-$1,399
A cheaper alternative is Podcast Designs. You tell them what you want and they’ll do the mock-up for you, complete with changes. Cost: $85-$185
If you’re really on a budget, head over to Fiverr. Search through the portfolios to find the right designer, and expect to pay more than just $5 to get it done right.
One last note: You might hold off on investing money on your cover art until you have at least a couple of shows completed, because it’s entirely possible your podcast will turn out to be something other than what you first imagined.
Recording Your Podcast
It’s important not to get hung up on equipment and software in the beginning. Think of your first few podcasts as practice, see what works for you and then upgrade from there.
Hopefully you already have a computer. Add a USB microphone with great sound quality for about $50, and you’ve got all the equipment you need to get started.
Software options abound. Ideally your software should both record and edit. Audacity is a favorite choice that provides quality, free-of-charge audio editing capabilities.
Or you might use Alitu: The Podcast Maker, which is a web app that automates audio cleanup, adds music and acts as your publishing host.
Other options include Ecamm for recording Skype, Zoom for video conferencing, and Squadcast which records each person on the podcast live on their own computer.
It’s Your First Podcast – What Should You Say?
Here are two tricks for always having something to say:
Practice in the shower. And while getting dressed. And while driving, while walking and while pacing around your house. The point is to start talking about your topic as though you were recording and just get used to the feel of podcasting.
If you’ll be conducting an interview, practice on your spouse or friend. Practice even with an imaginary guest. The more you practice, the more comfortable you will be when it comes time to record. Remember when you’re doing the interview to really listen to the guest. Some of your best questions will be things you would never think to ask if you weren’t listening closely to what they’re saying.
Second, get really good at research and outlining.
If you’re doing a solo podcast, research the latest news on your topic and make notes. Then using what you just learned along with the knowledge you already have, make an outline for yourself.
Notice I said “outline” and not “script.” Writing out what you will say word for word will take too much time and it will result in an unsatisfactory product. It’s best to work from a well-crafted outline and speak from your head and heart.
If you’re doing an interview, research both your topic and your guest and write down plenty of questions. Choose your best questions, place them approximately in the order you plan to ask them, and send the list to your guest.
This will give them time to prepare their answers and do any research they need to perform well on your show.
How Do You Get Guests?
This is the biggest question of nearly all new podcasters doing interviews.
And like many things, it does involve a Catch-22. When you are brand new to podcasting, it can be a little difficult to get guests because you don’t have a track record and you might not have an audience. But this is when you really NEED guests, so you’ll have to get them one way or the other.
Once you are well established with a good reputation and large audience, it will be easy to convince people to be your guests but you probably won’t need to, because they will come to you and ask to be on your show.
Here’s where to find your very first guests for your first podcasts:
Your contact list. Who do you know that would make a good guest for your podcast? It might be a colleague, a friend with the right expertise, or even the colleague of a mutual friend. It’s always easiest to start with the people already within your social circle and work out from there.
Friends of friends. You’re going to use your inner circle not only to find your first guests, but to also get introductions to potential guests within their circles as well.
If every time you ask someone to be your guest, you also ask them who else they would recommend, you may never run out of guests.
Put out the call. Send out an email to your list asking for experts. Put the same call out on social media.
And at the end of every podcast, ask your listeners if they have some specialized knowledge that is a good fit for your podcast and give them an email address to write to if they do.
But what if these things don’t work? What if you don’t know anyone with the right expertise for your podcast? Then your first step might be to record a couple of solo podcasts yourself, just to get started. Then when you approach potential interview guests, you can refer them to the podcasts you’ve already done.
Here are a few tips for where to find guests when you don’t know them yet:
Don’t try to book Bill Gates or Jeff Bezos on Day 1.
When choosing who to ask to be on your show, start small. Look for people in your niche who are new and looking to make their own mark. They will be much more likely to take a chance and say yes to you than someone who is already famous or well-established.
Plus, just like you, they probably need the experience.
Attend industry events.
If you attend industry events, you’ll find these can be a goldmine for finding new podcast guests. Socialize and network, collecting cards and finding out what each person has on their plate.
For example, if they’re getting ready to launch a new product or website, you’ve just discovered their motivation for being your podcast guest.
Search for book launches.
Watch Amazon for upcoming books in your niche. Simply search for your topic, and then change the search from “relevance” to “publication date.” These authors want book publicity and are often available for podcast interviews.
Raid your competition – twice.
Search for podcasts in your niche and make a list of the podcasters and their guests that you would like to book on your show. This is an awesome method to use, since you already know these are people open to being on a podcast and you can hear what they sound like before you ever approach them. And don’t forget to ask some of the podcasters about being a guest on their show as well.
Find the bloggers in your niche.
Look not only for the people who run the blogs, but also their guest bloggers, too, to find podcast guests.
Use podcasting guest services.
These are matchmaking services where podcasters can connect with potential guests. Simply search for “podcast guest service” to find a whole list of them.
Help a Reporter Out is a website that connects experts with reporters. In this case, you are the reporter looking for experts. This is an awesome site chock full of experts on just about any topic you can possibly think of, and it can be a source of podcasts guests who are well versed on how to give a great interview.
More Tips for Getting Great Guests:
Set the Stage: When you decide to approach someone, read their blog and leave valuable comments as well as connecting with them on social media. This way when you approach them, they’ll be familiar with your name and the request won’t sound like it comes from a total stranger.
Be Real: Be honest about your audience size. A potential guest wants to hear you have a massive audience, but if you don’t, be honest. Let them know if you do have an audience elsewhere that you can send to your podcast, such as through an email list and social media.
Offer the Link: Mention that you’ll link to their website, landing page, sales page or wherever they choose. This will help them with search engine optimization and possibly help to build their list and make sales.
Discuss Promotion: Tell them how you will promote the podcast on which they appear, now and in the future. Will you use social media? Will you run any paid ads? Will you promote the podcast to your lists?
Send Reminders: Your podcast guests are busy. Send a reminder one week before your scheduled interview (if applicable) and again 24 hours prior. If you have a list of questions, send those three days before you do the show.
Be Thankful: Thank them for considering your podcast, thank them when they agree to be a guest, thank them when you send the questions and reminders, thank them before the interview starts, thank them when you finish the interview, thank them when you send the link… you get the idea.
What do you say when contacting a potential podcast guest?
When you approach someone to ask if they will be your podcast guest, give them the following information:
Mention a blogpost, podcast, book or video they created that you read or watched. Let them know what you thought of it (all positive) and what you especially liked. They need to know that you're inviting them on your show because you like their stuff and see the value they bring, not because they are one of 300 random people you're spamming.
Tell them about your podcast - the name of the podcast, the purpose of the podcast and who your audience is.
If you've interviewed experts in the past, mention them. Name dropping can be highly effective here. If you have relevant credentials, mention those too, in moderation.
Mention any graphics you will create to be shared on social media, and the link they will receive.
Tell them how long the interview lasts (20 to 30 minutes is good) and that it’s audio only. If you’ve already done some shows, give them the URL so they can check it out. If not, give them the URL to a page that describes your podcast and talks about yourself as well.
Once You Post the Show
When the show is posted online, send your guest the link to the show so they can check it out. Do NOT ask them to promote it for you – it’s just bad form to ask. They were already nice enough to do the show, and whether or not they share it with their list or social media is up to them (most of them will share it, often multiple times.)
If they share the podcast link, THANK them for that, too.
Send them a gift. Yes, I mean send them an actual gift. I don’t know what that is because it will depend on the guest. But in the course of your research and conversations you will learn something about what they like. It could be a new book on their favorite topic, for example, which will cost you about $20 and Amazon will ship it for you.
The gift is important because it makes you stand apart from nearly every other podcaster out there and will leave them with a very positive feeling about you.
That combined with how well you treated them and how great the interview went will assure you can get them back as a guest again when the time is right.
And they might even send someone else your way to be your guest, too. You never know who they know.
Podcasting is such a large and important topic that we’re going to continue this next time when we cover…
Making Calls to Action within Your Podcast
Music, Introduction and Editing Your Podcast
Where to List Your Podcast
And most importantly…
Monetizing and Profiting from Your Podcast
Throughout history there have been many walls erected from Hadrian’s Wall in 122 AD, the Berlin wall in 1961 to the Israeli West Bank Barrier in 1994.
The idea behind them all is always “to keep the peace” and yet inevitably then end up doing the opposite as they become symbols for oppression or restriction. Thankfully they all disappear in time, some like Hadrian’s Wall and the Berlin Wall have ceased to exist (except in small parts to commemorate their own demise), some have yet to fall.
It was amazing that government and cultures still think walling up over issues is a valid way to tackle them. History has shown us that this does not work.
In our businesses as they grow, just like the great wall, we must expand the base to support it, so we lengthen the “wall” and make it thicker, longer and wider, taller and taller. We do this until it stretches into the distance and rises far taller than we imagined we could reach.
But as we build up that strong wall of stability, we are sacrificing- in part- our agility and adaptability, rather than having a huge uninterrupted landscape in which to work. We instead only have a restricted compound protected by walls. Don’t get me wrong, walls or boundaries help define who we are in business but at the same time – never lose sight of the fact that the more we try to protect our products and have a paranoid view of others out there, the more we will attract predators.
Cultivate a sense of trust and peace within your business and have respect for competitors. No one ever really does the same things in the exact same way anyhow.
Thank you for taking the time to read this episode. I would love to hear what you think about this issue, may email.
Wishing you a great year!
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