Ebook Finally Done After 3 Years - Now How Do I Get Testimonials?

28 replies
Alright so I just spent the last 3 years putting together a top notch eBook on the topic of online dating. (Geared towards helping men meet and date women online.)

The book is done, the sales page is done, the affiliate page is done, the newsletter content for the next 50 days is done, so now all I'm missing is getting some decent testimonials.

How would you go about getting these?

I would gladly give a few free copies to people, but I'm not sure how to go about contacting them. Obviously I can't just go on a dating website and email the guys on there directly. That'd be a big no-no as it would be seen as spam.

I emailed moderators of a few dating forums asking if I could create a post offering some review copies to their members for free, but that too was seen as spam and I was shot down.

The only other thing I can think of is to actually sell a few copies and then ask my customers for their opinion.

I have two issues with that though:

1) I wanted to get a few testimonials FIRST, before I launch. (Granted, testimonials aren't they only deciding factor that people will buy, but still.)

2) I wanted to do a "big" launch. Complete with prelaunch buzz, a 48 hour price discount, a few JV partners etc. I know I could do some sort of "soft" launch beforehand and only advertise the site using Google AdWords to limit the exposure, but I'd really prefer to get the testimonials BEFORE going live.

Thoughts? Ideas? Suggestions?

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
#ebook #finally #testimonials #years
  • Profile picture of the author Rob Howard
    3 Years...oh man. That's a lot of time...

    Ok - did you have a plan in mind? You said a product launch...

    I'm going to warn you - that takes a LOT of effort and planning. Especially if you want big names on board.

    You are going to need to first prove your product converts.

    If you want to speed this process along, you need to lay down about 500 to 1000 bucks for PPC ad's.

    The sole goal is to see if it converts. It doesn't matter if you break even or lose money - if you make sales, you will know it converts.

    You can then start taking those numbers to affiliates and partners.

    But first you gotta prove it's a money maker - unless of course you already have a network of partners.

    Rob

    Edit: I also wanted to warn you about getting good testimonials - you are talking about a dating product. It will take a few weeks for people to not only read the book but then implement.

    I suggest you find someone who is willing to do the steps provided.

    Sadly, most people will read it and never actually do anything with it.

    What you want is success stories. So find people who are the most motivated to make it work, give it to them, and then make sure they actually use it. Then if they have success, they can provide a case study/testimonial for you.

    Rob
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    • Profile picture of the author Joey89
      I am also working on an eBook, and I can respect the 3 years you put in. It must look amazing. I got a rough draft of mine also, which I spent about a month on.

      What you can do, and what I plan on doing, is sell your eBook at a discounted/cheaper price and use urgency by saying, this price won't last long, it will raise to ____ due to market research.

      Then just ask for a testimonial from your clients.

      You can write it in your ebook also.
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  • Profile picture of the author Christophe Young
    Well, congrats on getting your ebook done! I happen to have a couple out there on the very same topic. Here's my advice:

    I found testimonials to be rather overrated. I didn't have any on my site when I first launched and sales were fine. Then I added a few and I saw no change in sales. I thought about doing the things you are suggesting, but most didn't work. I asked readers to supply them and most didn't.

    What happened is eventually they started to just come in from various customers. I put the good ones on my site. Like I said, they didn't have much effect on my sales but I still have them on there.

    I wouldn't use fake testimonials or any of that fiverr stuff. Always best to be honest and post good, real feedback from customers.

    Good Luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author entry
      I hope you dont spend another 3 years collecting testimonials lol.

      Release the product out, and collect testimonials along the way.
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      • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
        Originally Posted by entry View Post

        I hope you dont spend another 3 years collecting testimonials lol.

        Release the product out, and collect testimonials along the way.
        LOL naaah, it'll only take 1.5 years at best

        Actually, I just remembered why I wanted to get testimonials beforehand. I had figured that approaching JVs with a sales page full of sexy testimonials would give me a bit more leverage and credibility than if I approached them without any at all.

        If I were in their shoes and I see some guy coming at me without any "social proof" that their product works, I might be tempted to label him as "just another newbie selling crap" - even if the product itself is really great.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
    Hi Rob,

    Yeah 3 years is a long time, but I wanted to make it really good.

    As for planning, I've got that covered. I did a lot of thinking/planning during the time I wrote it and I think I've got most of my bases covered.

    You are definitely right when you say I need to PROVE my product converts first. I already thought of that and had no intention of approaching a single JV until I did that first.

    And yes, I've already allotted at least a 1k budget for Google AdWords to test things out.

    It's funny you mention that it will take people some time to read and try out the material for a dating site, because I actually thought of the very same thing.

    I also know full well that most people will read the first 30-40 pages of an ebook and then stop. (Even for ones they've paid for!)

    As such, I've already addressed this in my "Testimonial template" email. Here's a snippet of it:

    In return, all I ask is for your testimonial (with a few guidelines in mind):

    1. The book is 185 pages long, but it contains A TON of info on how to meet and date attractive women online. The book will retail for $97 once it goes live in a few months. As you will receive the book for free, I ask that you actually read the whole thing, not just skim it. (This will take some time and that's ok, I just ask that you do in fact read all of it, not just the first few pages.)

    2. Once you've read the whole thing, I'd like to hear your feedback, things like:

    - What did you like about it?
    - What didn't you like about it?
    - What worked well?
    - What didn't work well?
    - Did the material help you get more responses from women? (More dates?)
    - Was anything confusing or not clear?
    - Was there anything you felt that was missing?

    3. Depending on your feedback (hopefully it's positive), I may use your testimonial on my website as a "success story." No personal information about you will be used (not even your name or location).


    I then go on to state that if and only if they are ok with these terms, will they get my book for free. I figure it's the best way to filter out the guys that have no intention of sending me any concrete feedback.

    I also think it's a numbers game. I might have to contact 100 guys to get 10 decent testimonials, but I'm ok with that. I just wish there was an easier way to ask people instead of going live prematurely.

    That being said however, you still need to prove your product converts before contacting JVs, so I guess a "soft launch" is the only answer.

    I'm curious as to what other "non high profile marketers" do before they launch to get some feedback on their product(s)?
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  • Profile picture of the author DeadRooster
    Here's what I would do: I'd get some of the women I met online to give testimonials.
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    • Profile picture of the author alcarrerra
      Originally Posted by DeadRooster View Post

      Here's what I would do: I'd get some of the women I met online to give testimonials.
      That's a really good idea ...
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
    Hey Chris,

    Yeah I had thought about that myself. I totally believe that to be true. Whenever I show my friends and family a sales page for an IM product, they immediately dismiss it as fake or a scam. Even if I show them a product of a reputable guru (which we know, but they don't) they refuse to believe anything on that page, especially the testimonials.

    So I can see how not having them wouldn't make a huge difference.

    Of course, only testing said scenario with your site/product will tell you the truth, but you've given me the confidence to do a soft launch without worrying about the lack of testimonials beforehand.

    Joey, thanks for the nice words. And yes I was thinking of that too. Offering a special introductory price/offer for the first few customers to get the "testimonial ball" rolling.
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  • Profile picture of the author BeachDude
    Fiverr.com is by far the best and cheapest place to get video testimonials.
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  • Profile picture of the author Christophe Young
    Yah, getting affiliates to promote for you can be a tough one. There are a lot of great threads on here covering that topic. Offering 100% instant commissions is one way to attract some good affiliates pretty quick.

    I've approached a few and some have made some good sales. I'm always willing to work with serious affiliates who are willing to work with me. Then there are always those who don't respond to your request. I just write them off as those who don't like making money.

    And yah, don't worry about testimonials right now. Just get your ebook out there!

    $97??? That must be one HELL of an ebook!
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
      Originally Posted by Christophe Young View Post

      Yah, getting affiliates to promote for you can be a tough one. There are a lot of great threads on here covering that topic. Offering 100% instant commissions is one way to attract some good affiliates pretty quick.
      You know, I've thought about offering the 100% commission thing, but frankly I just can't do it. I really put my heart and soul into this book and the idea of giving someone else 100% of the profits just doesn't feel right to me.

      My plan is to offer a 50% commission. No more. No less. I see an affiliate or a JV as an EQUAL partner and as such, I think we deserve an equal amount of the profits. I know others will say give at least 75% to attract more affiliates but I think promoting a product should be based on its QUALITY, not its commission dollar amount.

      This goes double for people with lists. Building a list takes TIME. It's an asset. It makes you money over and over again. The smart marketer will only promote a quality product with a lower commission over a crappy product with a higher commission any day of the week.

      He or she won't risk their reputation by sending people to some crap that someone threw together in a week or two. Whatever product you promote to your list is a REFLECTION of yourself. So if I had a big list, I'd only promote the really good stuff.

      At least, that's how I see it...

      $97??? That must be one HELL of an ebook!
      Oh it is =) That's why it took me so long to write it. But it's actually priced at that amount for several different psychological reasons. (I'd be happy to discuss if you're interested, although we're getting off topic here lol.)
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      • Profile picture of the author Tony Marriott
        Originally Posted by Mike Bradson View Post

        You know, I've thought about offering the 100% commission thing, but frankly I just can't do it. I really put my heart and soul into this book and the idea of giving someone else 100% of the profits just doesn't feel right to me.

        My plan is to offer a 50% commission. No more. No less. I see an affiliate or a JV as an EQUAL partner and as such, I think we deserve an equal amount of the profits. I know others will say give at least 75% to attract more affiliates but I think promoting a product should be based on its QUALITY, not it's commission dollar amount.

        This goes double for people with lists. Building a list takes TIME. It's an asset. It makes you money over and over again. The smart marketer will only promote a quality product with a lower commission over a crappy product with a higher commission any day of the week.

        He or she won't risk their reputation by sending people to some crap that someone threw together in a week or two. Whatever product you promote to your list is a REFLECTION of yourself. So if I had a big list, I'd only promote the really good stuff.

        At least, that's how I see it...
        If your willing to take some advice?

        You have made more than one "rooky" mistake here and you are continuing to do so.

        First and most important is - take action. It doesn't matter how good your ebook is , if you don't sell it it's not worth anything. Get out and sell it!

        Secondly, your view on "equal partnerships" with affiliates is basically wrong. Affiliates with good lists will have people begging them to sell their products. How many products will you sell without an affiliate with a list? How many will you sell via an affiliate with a good list?

        Divide one by the other and the larger part is how much value an affiliate brings to your business. 50/50 for newbie and and an affiliate with a good list is frankly never going to fly.

        Don't see the short term gain (your initial revenue) as the goal. See the list and the many more product sales you will make down the line. If that takes 100% commissions then grab the opportunity with both hands and say thank you!

        "I really put my heart and soul into this book" - That's an emotion. Get past it and be a businessman. It's a product you want to sell, a business you want to build.


        Sorry if that sound harsh (I do understand, I've been there and it's hard) but that really is some of the best advice you will get at this stage.

        I wish you the very best of luck. Please take action and get that book out there.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
    Thanks Tony. I appreciate your words. You definitely sound like you've been down in the trenches and that you speak from experience. Great stuff.

    Here are my thoughts:

    1. At launch, I plan to offer $20 off the sale price for the first 48 hours only. I know this works well because frankly, it worked on me for another product. I'm betting (i.e. hoping) this gives me a little leverage to approach potential JVs. If there's one thing I've learned about selling, it's that people love to buy things that are NEW and that are on SALE. I'm hoping this urgency factor will help me score a few partners. (Of course, I'm not relying solely on that, it's just one of many factors I plan to implement.)

    2. Believe me, I'm all about the long term. However, I only have 1 product. Granted, I do have a few affiliate links scattered throughout the book for potential back end sales, but I'm doubtful I'll make a lot from those. (Although I could be totally wrong.)

    Aside from that I'm also planning to build a list during my launch and I've already got content typed out to pitch/promote other quality products in the dating niche. I know you are saying give 100% of my product profits upfront in exchange for more traffic/subscribers from more JVs, but I just can't believe 100% commission is what it would take. That just seems overly greedy to me.

    However, that being said, I do see the value in doing something like that if it means they can send me a healthy amount of subscribers. There's just too many unknowns. What % of buyers will purchase through my back end links within the PDF? What % will buy the affiliate offers I promote?

    I think the 100% commission route would work better for someone with multiple products, with say a $37 or $47 product at the front end combined with 2 or 3 higher priced upsells.

    In any event, what if you started with 50% commission, and if they refused, move up to 75% and then 100% after that? Does Clickbank allow you to do this? Offer specific commission amounts for specific affiliates?
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  • Profile picture of the author Christophe Young
    I agree with Tony above. I too, didn't like the idea of offering 100% commissions to affiliates at first, but you have to look at it as a long term business. You're getting a buyer's list to sell other products. That can be really valuable.

    I'm not sure what you have in your ebook, but at $97, conversions might be tough. Ebooks in this niche tend to go for $27, $37, and $47. I would test all three price points. If you do, in fact generate a lot of sales at $97, then a 50% commission would be more appropriate. Just make sure and do some testing.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
      Originally Posted by Christophe Young View Post

      I'm not sure what you have in your ebook, but at $97, conversions might be tough. Ebooks in this niche tend to go for $27, $37, and $47. I would test all three price points. If you do, in fact generate a lot of sales at $97, then a 50% commission would be more appropriate. Just make sure and do some testing.
      Yeah I know what you mean.

      As for the price point, people always tell me it's too high, but I've purchased one dating product for $97 (which sucked) and another one for $300 (which was ok but definitely not worth the price). I even saw one guy offer his course for $1,000. (I didn't buy it, but looked like crap.)

      The funny thing though, is that I purchased another dating ebook at $40 and it was way better quality than the first two combined.

      But like you said, only testing the page will tell.

      I'm assuming a few PPC ads is the best way to go about this?
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  • Profile picture of the author Christophe Young
    In any event, what if you started with 50% commission, and if they refused, move up to 75% and then 100% after that? Does Clickbank allow you to do this? Offer specific commission amounts for specific affiliates?
    Highest you can go is 75% with Clickbank. There are other options you can use for a full commission such as Digiresults. Starting at 50% and then working you way up is a good idea. Do what's best for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author blueorca17
    Give out the book to some dudes you know having a hard time getting girls....then get their testimonials after they try out the techniques in the book. If they work, get the testimonials. If not, tweak the book so that they do.
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  • Profile picture of the author LB
    Man, Tony's post sounds like I wrote it.

    He is so spot on with so much.

    Your first product, sometimes your first few products, should simply be looked at as the toll to play the game.

    You think 100% is high?

    I get people offering 100% with 25% bonuses for the first 30 days...they are PAYING just to try and get people to promote. Because, that's what it takes to be competitive.

    3 years has caused you to be emotionally attached. Why did it take so long? Perfectionism? Just move past that.

    I think the advice you've been given to give 100% commissions is good. At least 75% would be respectable. Clickbank's top is 75%

    You've kind of put the cart before the horse. To get good JVs you need a good product but also a killer sales process with metrics that you can share. That might mean running on Adwords etc. for awhile to get conversion rates. Nothing will kill your career faster than launching a dud offer that doesn't convert through a big list.

    If you can secure the interest of a big JV, they might be able to put you in touch with people for testimonials (customers/friends who can try and review it)

    Most promoters are going to expect an initial sale with at least one upsell (often 2-3) before they take a look.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joey89
      I could provide a testimonial for you. My skills with women need work, so your eBook can help me out. Just slip the free copy under the table so no one see's.....haha just kidding. If that's something you want to offer fellow warrior's as a gift for helping, that would be cool.
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  • Profile picture of the author Joey89
    I can't really send any private messages back to you because my post's, but can you send me your email in a private message then I will reply and then you'll get mine.



    Thanks again.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mike Bradson
      Originally Posted by Joey89 View Post

      I can't really send any private messages back to you because my post's, but can you send me your email in a private message then I will reply and then you'll get mine.
      Thanks again.
      Hey Joey, no problem. Just sent you a PM. Thanks for your interest.
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  • Profile picture of the author royljestr
    If you want testimonial just give away a few dozen copies and ask people to write honest reviews.
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  • Profile picture of the author crazyamit
    Hey mike! First of all congrats on getting your ebook done. Seem like you did a very hard work on the e-book. But you have to think like a businessman. I am fully agree with the guys: ccmusicman, Christophe Young and Tony Marriott giving you advice that don't wait for testimonials just go ahead and sell your product and collect testimonial together

    Anyways I am ready to help you, I could provide a good testimonial for you. You just PM me the review copy of your e-book.

    I want to mention that I bought a 2000$ product on how to launch your product online? Really was a good information. Here is some info which applies on your case is

    1. Don't wait! Just go online with your product. I think Joey and mine testimonial is sufficient to satisfy your need for testimonial.
    2. You can use a better option like dating ezines for a cheaper and targeted traffic to your sites along with google adword to track your conversion rates to show to the affiliates.
    3. I am not agree with paying 100% commission to the affiliates but You are making a big mistake of offering 50% of commission to the affiliates. Affiliates are the person who will do all the hard work for you and of course attracting visitors and making a list of clients is a more profitable deal. Anyways decision is yours.

    Good Luck
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  • Profile picture of the author pmbrent
    Instead of "giving it away" try selling them really inexpensive for maybe $1 or something. People will buy it because of the price and you build your list at the same time.
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  • Profile picture of the author LuvAbundance
    Hey Guys! I just want to say thank you to the OP for starting this thread and for all the helpful suggestions so far. I am in a very similar spot, but with an ebook for women, on how to get the relationship they want (Maybe our customers can meet each other, lol).

    I am going to read through in more detail..but I'm amazed how you can always seem to find somebody on Warrior with your same issue...(and then hopefuly both of you get solutions :-) ) AWERRSOME.
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  • Profile picture of the author O0o0O
    I would personally call some of your trusted female and male friends and get them to email you a testimonial. I would spend a little time talking it up offline and getting the people to send you their review. I've done that with a few products of mine and it works great. Just so it doesn't sound scammy to them, don't even mention a sales page. Just tell them that you'll email them a copy. Don't mention "selling" or "sales". What I usually say is "Hey, I wrote a book about ____ and I was wondering if you would give me a review on it." It sounds more personal.
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  • Profile picture of the author techbul
    You can try and grab a few testimonials by giving it away in the War Room. Perhaps you will even find some partners that are willing to JV with you.
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