In the last 6 months or so, I've really focused in on what works in generating money from your list on the backend.
And I don't mean with autoresponders. I don't do autoresponders, I don't like them. I'm always actively working with my list with broadcasts, blog posts, promotions, special landing pages, etc.
In the last year, I've added a little more than 20,000 people to my list (all through repeated JV's mailing for me. How do you do that? Become a really cool fu##king person in the eyes of your potential JV's. How do you do that? Start with Dale Carnegie and soon thereafter, graduate to Robert Greene. And as always, please remember to *use* what you learn).
And with those 20,000-ish people, I earn just around $.71 per subscriber, each month just off the back-end. I don't know what most people earn per subscriber per month but that's a fairly long-term, consistent number and one that I know is head and shoulders above what most good marketers are making off of their back-end.
If you have a list and aren't at this point yet, I'm now going to break down some of the breakthroughs I've made recently as to how I'm doing this and how you can do it as well.
Also, I'm probably going to be saying some things that are completely counter-intuitive to what you've been conditioned to believe. Take it for what it's worth (which, IMO, is somewhere in the 5K range). If you don't like what you hear because it rocks you out of your comfort zone, so be it -- someone else will undoubtedly feel differently and benefit a ton from this. I hope it's you.
Making Money From Your List
At this point in time, people make money from their lists a variety of ways. You send content and you pitch at the end or your pitch throughout. You simply pitch. You promote a launch as an affiliate. You promote your own launch. You promote your own special promotion. You create new offers and promote those. You have some form of continuity. Those are the most common ways and they're all good and fine.
But most people don't know how to balance all of these things together for optimal list happiness/cashflow.
I'll show you how throughout this post.
Content vs. Promo Material
I've heard a ton of people talk about different plans on how to best mix "salesy communications" with "content communications".
There's the 20/60/20 Rule (where it's 20% pure content, 20% pitch and 60% mixed). There's the 50/50 Rule (50% pitch, 50% content). I've even heard the 69/31 Rule, but I think the guy who told me that was probably just a little sexed out and was getting his numbers confused.
Th point is all of these "rules" sound fine on paper, but they're very general and incredibly misleading -- to follow set in stone rules like this would not only lose you money, but it also demonstrates a lack of understanding what your list is -- they're people, with ever-changing needs and emotions.
Maybe on a day where you're supposed to be running a content piece (because you're running with the 20/60/20 Rule), a good majority of your list all recently suffered the same pain in their lives (a pain your product would solve) but because you're gonna waste his time giving him 3 Tips To Better Farts, he'll never get to your solution. And by the time you do get around to pitching a week later, he's already over it and out of "buying mode".
The point is the mixing of content and pitching isn't a science -- it's an art (that is if content is EVER EVEN NECESSARY...).
Is Content Even Necessary?
In a word, maybe.
Here's what I know:
1. When I pitch, I make money.
2. When I send nothing but success stories/testimonials, I make money.
3. When I talk about their problems and frustrations, I make money.
4. When I do fun, random non-content stuff, I make money.
5. When I do content, I make a little money.
6. When I do pure content, I make no money.
7. When I pitch, I get some unsubscribes.
8. When I do content, I get a lot of unsubscribes (and my content is top-shelf sh*t).
Looking at this chart (I use the term chart extraordinarily loosely here), content would appear to be the enemy. It's not though -- it does serve its purposes:
a) It helps ALL emails get opened (so you need to send some of it often enough that people might expect it)
b) It can build trust in you, that your people believe you know what you're talking about (but so does being able to describe their problems and frustrations *better* than they can, amongst other things)
c) If you're passionate about your niche (which I am extremely), it'll make you feel good and your food taste better.
But it only needs to be delivered enough to keep the "ON" switches flipped up for all of these things. That's the extent of content.
And while I'm here, let's talk about goodwill.
Goodwill ain't ****.
I know in the last year, goodwill has been somewhat of a buzzword, but IMNHO, it's extremely secondary.
Let's be real: We don't *buy* stuff from the people who are always doing cool sh*t for us. No way. We EXPECT stuff from them. We take them for granted.
We BUY from the people we believe can help us with our problems in the most effective, safest and fastest way possible.
And how do you get people to see you as that guy?
You talk about their problems.
People waste so much time fluffing about bullsh*t and tips for that and a cool story about this -- stop it.
They know have problems, that's why they came to you.
You know you a solution, that's why you're here.
So talk about their problems, their pains, their frustrations and let them know about your solution. That's how moneys made.
Don't be like that guy who's too much of a pantsy to make the move on the girl when they both clearly like each other.
Make your move -- talk about their problems.
Why am I so adamant about this?
Because people NEED to hear about this stuff before they're ready to hand their 16-digits over to you. To appreciate the sun, we need the rain. And to appreciate your product and solution, they need the pain (hey, I just rhymed! Wi-five!).
On top of that, this is what gets your potential buyers to open your emails.
For example, let's says Subscriber A is on 2 different experts list in the same market. Expert 1 is a badass marketer (maybe with a fo-hawk) and he sends an email with a subject line like, "Did you spend Saturday night in front of your computer with a kleenex AGAIN?".
Let's also say that in Expert One's email, he's gonna describe to you exactly what really did happen to you last Saturday night and make you feel bad about it and then tell you it's not your fault and if you're finally ready to put an end to this once and for all, he's got your solution.
And let's say Expert 2 is the nice-guy in the market. He gives away a ton of free content, he's got tons of goodwill and he might even come cook for you and your family if you ask, 'cause he's just such a darned good guy.
So let's say Expert 2 also sends an email on the same day that says "3 NEW Girl-Getting Tricks (new on the blog!)" and you know it's gonna be a link to a new blog post where at the end of it, he'll throw a little pitch in there for his program.
Which email do you think is going to get opened more?
Truthfully, it'd probably be about even. But which one will make you more money?
The second one and it's not even close. And here's the best part:
You can send emails like Expert A over and over again, because people NEVER TIRE OF HEARING ABOUT THEIR PROBLEMS, PAINS AND FRUSTRATIONS.
Take that one to the proverbial bank.
Plus, have you ever heard anyone say "My list is cashed. They've become really non-responsive, I need to give them a break"?
The truth is their list isn't cashed or even unresponsive, that person just hasn't been talking to their list the right way.
Their list wants to hear about their problems, they want to hear about how you hold the key to their desires. The other stuff is just unnecessary fluff, plain and simple.
And with all that in mind, let's take a look at how you can do this, and severly increase your backend cashflow simultaneously.
What I've done is put together is a monthly cycle I try to shuffle through each month that allows me to pitch as often as I want, without ever seeing open rates or responsiveness go down.
I can't give you that entire cycle right now because
1. I'm presenting on it in a couple months at a good friends event and it wouldn't be fair to him
2. It's really f*cking good.
That being said, I'll gladly give you some of the generalities.
A) Plan out your marketing.
Dan Kennedy once said, "Bitches ain't sh*t." He was right.
He also once said something like, "Your income is directly related to the quality and intelligence of your marketing." He was also right.
Intelligent marketing is planned-out marketing. It's knowing all of your promotions for the next few months, it's planning out all of your stick-rate tactics months in advance for your continuity program, it's knowing how mentioning a Joint Venture Partner in a blog post in September is going to boost conversions for his launch in November.
Plan everything out for at least 2-3 months and make sure it all makes sense. Then look at how your prospect avatar would respond to a 2-3 month communication like that -- if you look at it from their perspective and don't say to yourself, "Gosh, he's selling a lot", go back and add more "pitch communications" to your schedule. And when you do, make a note that you're going to do it by talking about their pains and problems the majority of the time.
B) Alternate Between Harder and Softer Pitch Weeks
Pretty straight-forward. If someone were to graph your pitching on a graph, it should look like a bunch of parabolas next to each other.
Also, here's a little trick: On a softer pitch week, promote an affiliate product and let THEM do the pitching. Just send your list to an article of that affiliates that has sales content in it.
That way, all you have to say in the email is "Here's a great article about whatever from my good buddy Sherlock Frankenstein."
Also of note here: The thing that determines whether your subscriber sees something as a harder pitch vs. a softer pitch is often just the LENGTH of the pitch in the email.
C) Send Success Story Emails
These ones are short, don't take ANY salesmanship and sell like crazy.
You just send an email that says "Hey man, check out this success story I just got from Mike in Houston, who used my "Pickup Chicks Without Showering" eBook. Then show them the new success story and at the end of it, tell them they can try the same program Mike used for just a $1 Trial or whatever your current offer is.
These emails are NOT content, nor are they salesy. They just come off as you being super-proud and excited of your product. They also build trust in that what you do works and they hit lots of emotional hot buttons if they had ANYTHING in common with that success story in the email.
D) Create Splintered Products To Sell Each Month
Splintered products are just smaller products that, if a bunch of them were put together, they could probably be one big product.
It'd be like making a 10- step video course, and making each step or two a product on its own.
Here's what you do with these: You create a new one each month and you sell it for a low price point. You make it only temporarily available (for a REAL reason).
Doing this gets you tons of NEW customers because of the lower barrier to consume and it also gets you tons of repeat customers who have purchased stuff from you in the past. It also adds a whole new flow of cash coming in each month that wasn't there before.
And for those of you who think creating a new program each month is too much and too overwhelming for your subscribers, I'll quote DK here one more time: "Your customers ability to consume information will always be greater than your ability to produce it."
Two more things to remember before I get going here if you read this and thought, "Wow, this all sounds great in theory, but this would overwhelm my subscriber".
1. Your subscriber came to you because they had a problem they believed you could solve. If they still haven't bought from you yet, it's because your marketing isn't yet good enough and maybe a little more intelligent pitching is just what the shaman ordered...just maybe they wouldn't be overwhelmed, but instead -- relieved.
Relieved because you finally pulled whatever mind-game tricks you had to in order to overcome their skepticism, get them to buy and allow them access to your killer solution, which is what they've needed all along.
2. If you get 20% open rates every time you send, remember it's almost always a DIFFERENT 20% opening those emails. I'm not even going to elaborate on that, but please read it again and figure out how powerful that is.
All right, now I'm done. Time to catch some How I Met Your Mother and catch some shut-eye.
Oh, and since I'm clearly a pure salesman at heart, yes, I do consulting, and no, I'm not cheap.
Best of luck,