Author Archives: quedge9

Ode to a Very Special Soul


I was trying very hard to keep this private, but it’s now spread around, so I feel it’s best to share it with you all…

After fifteen years of loyal company, my Zachary passed on New Year’s morning. After seeming perfectly fine on New Year’s Eve (which ironically is when I thought to use his picture to illustrate my point yesterday), Zach woke up retching, dizzy, and with very labored breathing.
By the time we got to the emergency room it was too late ūüôĀ

Which is the saddest way I could possibly have imagined starting the New Year.
But then, of all things, my housekeeper came to me crying at the news. She told me a long story about how she was terrified of dogs for her whole life until she worked for us… but there was just no way she could remain afraid after having Zachary’s company.

Which brought back a flood of memories…

You see, Zachary was with me when I was in the midst of my busy 65 person practice on Long Island…

  • When I worked with children, I’d often bring him in. It was astounding how nothing I learned in five years of graduate (and post graduate) training could get these kids to open up, but the moment he was in the room many of these kids would tell all
  • There were also several adult patients and coaching clients who requested he join us for their sessions. Rape victims, PTSD sufferers… and even just some “desperate housewives” who found it so much easier to delve into their goals, obstacles, and fears with Zachary by their side
  • One time I forget to leave the door to the upstairs closed so he couldn’t come down to my session room unplanned… at which time he promptly came down and knocked on the door. My client asked who it was, and I said “I think it’s my dog who’d like to join us.” She was utterly convinced I had planned this and broke down crying to thank me. (Followed by some very serious progress given her new level of trust… so I’m embarrassed to admit I didn’t dissuade her from that notion)

Of course, Zachary also made it possible for ME to do things I never thought possible. Like an 18 mile hike in the wilderness where I didn’t see another soul, but only heard his little chain dangling and his little doggy breath faithfully behind me for hours on end. I think without him I might have gone mad. (And this is, of course, a metaphor for other things I’ve had to face alone which I’d not have had the courage to face without my little companion)

In any case, it so happens I’m working with a ghost writer to develop a book about how to coach well when you’ve got trauma in your own life. Perhaps this is an opportunity to show you.
I’ve always done best when I focus on my clients and/or students needs at these times. It takes me out of myself and helps me process the loss in small doses. And paradoxically, I often find at these times I’m actually at my best… perhaps because it reminds me how very precious life is.

This is one of the very few things I’m likely to have difficulty talking about in public sessions, or responding to in private emails and messages. So if you REALLY want to help it’s not really your condolences and personal messages which would be most effective. Instead here’s the best way: ¬†TAKE A STEP FORWARD TODAY IN YOUR OWN LIFE IN HIS MEMORY

Whatever that means to you, and whatever Sharon and I may mean to you… what would mean the most to us would be to know that this day, this very sad day, was the day YOU had the courage to step beyond your own internal struggles and move your OWN life forward in some small way…

And, if you’re so inclined, let us know what you did below.

This way you’ll always remember our dear dog Zachary as a positive force which started your train moving further than you thought it ever could… and even though you two may never have met he may indeed wind up meaning to you even a fraction of what he meant to me.
Goodbye my boy… if there is a dog heaven God knows you belong there.

You will be dearly missed.

The Paradox of Joint Ventures


Know what’s really weird¬†about joint ventures? ¬† If you go after them the right way, you actually won’t need them.

Think about it for a minute…

Let’s say you control¬†a 100,000 person¬†mailing list. ¬†Maybe you’ve generated through paid advertising. ¬†Perhaps the leads cost you $15 each. ¬†And to maintain that list, you’ve got to KEEP¬†paying for new leads. ¬†(One thing a lot of new marketers don’t realize is that once you get to a certain size with a list, you actually can’t keep growing it with the same lead source. ¬†Because at some point, even with a very low unsubscribe¬†rate, the number of leads dropping out exceeds the volume you can attract each month. ¬†It’s just a byproduct of the math)

The “bandwidth” (mailing slots) on that list are therefore NOT really cost-free, despite what most people who’ll be pitching you joint ventures seem to assume. ¬†You actually HAVE TO¬†earn substantially on every mailing to “keep the lights on” for that particular list. ¬†Plus, especially with a list that size, every mailing has it’s own costs…mostly in unsubscribes, but also in managing complaints, customer service inquiries, and the like.

The upshot of this is, before you’re going to agree to mail for someone, you really want some kind of proof their system is going to profitably convert your visitors into customers. ¬†You’re going to ask to see evidence of previous mailings… or even better, paid advertising tests to a similar audience.

This¬†is why it’s difficult to get major list holders to mail for your new offer. ¬†What you really need to do before you approach a major mailer is develop PROOF that your system works.¬†Which means, oddly enough, to get really solid joint venture partners you usually need to spend some money on advertising and conversion optimization.

Now, here’s the paradox…

If you develop your paid advertising funnel correctly (so it converts!) you actually may not¬†need the joint venture partners at all. ¬†Or rather, you may only desire them for extra volume… but most likely you’ll be able to buy all the traffic you need.

In fact, you should be able to approach the joint venture partners and just BUY traffic from them directly, rather than asking for a joint venture. ¬†(For example, if you’ve got a proven list of 2,000+ responsive coaches, consultants, authors or speakers I would consider paying you $2 per visitor you send to my site¬†via a specific email I’ve tested… contact me via www.PsyTechSupport.com if you’re interested)…

Of course you’d need to test this out slowly in order to protect yourself. ¬†But if you CAN do it–and the fastest¬†way to get there is by conversion optimizing your site on paid advertising–you’ll be in an incredibly powerful position…

Because it’s unlikely your “JV Partners” will want to reciprocate. ¬†(Thanks to Bill Harrison for pointing this out to me originally)

On the other hand, if you have a brand new site¬†with no proven conversion statistics, but you approach a power JV player to mail for you, what you’re really doing is asking THEM to take all the risk.

In a rational world, they won’t play ball…

Hence the JV Paradox.

However, we don’t live in a completely rational world. ¬†Not even close! ¬†And because of this, there ARE ways to convince power players to joint venture with you:

  • Perhaps they’re really in love with your idea…
  • Or maybe you’ve built the relationship in such a way as to imbue a feeling of reciprocity or obligation…
  • They could love YOU…
  • Or they really feel your free¬†promotional series is valuable for their list and they’d like to use it to educate their own customers (Perry Marshall once told me I made his customers smarter, and that made it possible for them to buy more from him)
  • Or maybe you offer them a ridiculous commission to compensate them for the risk you’re asking them to take. ¬†(But remember, 100% of zero is still zero if the system doesn’t convert. ¬†And no matter how much of the work you do for your partner they STILL are spending their credibility and mailing-list-bandwidth on your promotion)

There are actually about 101 different ways you can compensate for asking a JV partner to take more risk for you… but before you can use¬†them effectively you really need to understand and accept the magnitude of what¬†you’re asking.

Asking for a serious¬†joint venture is kind of on the level of asking to stay at someone’s house for the evening. ¬†You kind of have to prove you’re trustworthy, have something to offer, and invest a little time in the relationship first.

If you’d like to learn more about using joint ventures to put cash in your bank account and visitors on your list year after year, please opt in to the JV Fast Track Sublist here.

The Multi-Million Dollar Practice

Ryan Levesque is a coach I personally trained several years ago… who’s now gone on to develop a multi-million dollar coaching and consulting¬†business in a very narrow marketing space. ¬†And although it would be unreasonable to assume just getting trained and certified with us will provide these results for you, we wanted you to hear this example of what’s actually possible if you pursue this business to it’s logical end! ¬†(You can also download the transcript here)

Enjoy ūüôā

PS – If you’d like to find out more about becoming a trained and certified business coach under our (Terry Dean and my) tutelage, ¬†please visit www.GrowthAccelerationSystems.com (Get on the priority waiting list today for the next¬†class… last time we sold out in just a few days)

Irresistible OFFLINE Offers

I know this is hard to believe for us internet marketing junkies, but there really are people who make millions¬†OFFLINE too ūüôā

I met Steve Rifkin in the gym.

We both go to this masochistic exercise class where a crazy ex-police Sergeant (among others) beats the hell out of us and insults us for an hour.  If we complain it, it gets worse.  But we both keep coming back.

Now, I’m not sure¬†exactly what the correlation of this kind of class is with success, but¬†I think the density of extremely accomplished entrepreneurs there is a lot higher than what I’ve seen at most internet marketing seminars. ¬†A lot…

Maybe it has something to do with having the fortitude to keep challenging yourself to get better and better…

Or maybe it’s a perverse¬†drive to enjoy the pain in a sick kind of a way…

But these are a group of VERY successful people, many of whom run multi-million dollar businesses.   The thing of it is though, most of them are OFFLINE marketers.  They own construction services, hardware stores, car washes, etc.

Sharon and I went for a hike with Steve and I over the summer, during which I had the opportunity to grill him about his background.  It turns out he started and built out a set of SEVEN car washes in the area and blitzed them full of customers.  He now works as a Vice President for Spectrum Marketing, a $50,000,000 direct marketing company which specializes in OFFLINE media.

So of course, I took the opportunity to interview him about his secrets to success…

And what I learned was VERY intriguing…

Have a listen and give us some feedback please.

Trying to bring you something different.

Onwards and Upwards!

The Very Good Dr. G ūüôā

PS – If you decide to call Steve, please let him know you heard this interview and I’m sure he’ll make an extra effort to help.

 

 

 

What Are Your Three Power Skills?

Back when I was a first setting out to make my mark in the business world¬†(you know, like when dinosaurs roamed the earth and we’d just barely given up 8-track tapes) I had a serious conversation with myself…

“Self”, I said, “You can’t know everything in this world. ¬†What are the three areas¬†which are truly the source of your power?” ¬†Not power in a “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” sense of the word, but the kind of real-world, practical power upon which I could build my foundation.

At the time the answer was psychology, computers, and statistics. I’d been raised in a family of psychologists and “worked” in my Dad’s practice. ¬†(I put worked in quotes because I didn’t get paid…and I also got SO¬†much more out of it than my peers who worked at McDonalds or the ice cream store!)

So there was no psychology book I didn’t want to read, no seminar I didn’t want to go to, and no psychotherapist who’s brain I didn’t want to pick for at least an hour… So psychology definitely was one leg of the triangle.

In both college my professors noticed and rewarded me for my quantitative abilities. ¬†They trained me to hone this into an ability to INFER causality in human behavior rather than asking it directly…

I therefore attended a “Scientist-Practitioner” oriented graduate school where experimentation and research methods were emphasized…

They taught me how to “get the soul in the machine”…these days what we would call “Thin Slicing” life and analyzing it with numbers. ¬†We did esoteric things like code¬†the mother-infant bond microsecond by microsecond. At the time I actually thought it was stupid…

Until the computers analyzed the numbers and lit them up like a firefly in July.  They told a story no human eye could reveal in no uncertain terms. Hence, computers and statistics entered my power fields.

So, at an early age I was convinced the place I’d get a real edge over my peers in the business world was by making a serious, lifelong study of psychology, computers, and statistics.

Looking back on it, this was an incredibly valuable decision. Having this filter from which to view the world…

Knowing¬†the skills and knowledge base I personally wanted to expand…

They all provided me with a tremendous focal point that truly has given me an edge over the competition. Moreover,¬†the three are so much more powerful when combined…

Computer Geeks rule the world (and yes, I AM a Geek trapped in a Jock’s body!)¬† But they’re becoming progressively more plentiful. ¬†And as most of the literally thousands of stellar programmers on my lists will tell you, it’s not enough to be talented with code. Inferential statistics is a very powerful science. ¬†Yet there aren’t too many millionaire stat professors¬†coming out of even our most prestigious¬†universities.

And don’t even get me started on the financial rewards of psychology. ¬†A good psychologist STILL only gets a salary of about $80,000…and maybe only 10% of them become entrepreneurial enough to develop their private practices into the multiple six figure range twenty or thirty years into their careers.

But when you COMBINE these three power skills, magic starts to happen. Nobody expects someone who’s good¬†with computers and statistics to also have the sensitivity, insight, and psychological fortitude to¬†see what’s going on inter-personally at the highest level. It’s at the intersection of these skills (and knowledge bases) that the real power lies.

And I’m so happy I made the decision to focus on and develop them early in my life.

Now, I’ve got to tell you I did NOT develop all of them in the exact direction I imagined starting out… I originally thought I’d be designing inferential human studies for large corporations for the rest of my life…and anyone who knows me knows I got burned out of that in 1998 when Bausch and Lomb made me fly back and forth to Tokyo for a one hour meeting in a 36 hour time frame. ¬†(At least I got to eat the world’s best sushi!) And I’d never have guessed my study of psychology would¬†lead to doing so much copywriting and product development… but it did.

But¬†that question I asked myself sitting all alone in my room 25 years ago still turned out to be one of the most important questions anyone ever posed to me…

So now I’m asking YOU…

What are your three power skills? I’d really like to know!

Upwards and Onwards…

The Very Good Dr. Glenn ūüôā

PS –¬†I know modesty isn’t one of my power skills. ¬†But honestly, screw modesty…I’ll take success over it any day! PPS – Enrollment in the Coaching Academy is open this week. ¬†If you’d like to meet some very special people and get help to identify your own power skills (including the opportunity to work with me personally in live webinars once a week…and my darling wife twice a week), maybe you should consider taking the $25 trial?

Are You a Marketing Junkie Without a Home?

Are you a marketing junkie in search of a home?

I’ve been teaching this stuff for¬†almost 10 years now, and I’ve¬†run into a lot of people who are utterly intoxicated with marketing… and I don’t blame them! ¬†For people with a certain personality¬†(including myself)¬†the first taste of the idea you can create¬†a tribe-building-money-making machine is enough to make you sell all your belongings, forget your old life, and dedicate yourself full time to its pursuit.

You mean I can build SYSTEMS which¬†genuinely help¬†people, connect them to each other, create appreciation for my own thoughts, opinions, and philosophies of life…and get paid for it separate and apart from the time I put in? ¬† ¬†Why didn’t anyone send ME the memo sooner!!!???

But here’s the problem…

You’ve gotta¬†have something to sell. ¬†And that “something” requires systems of it’s own. ¬†It turns out if you want to indulge your passion for marketing to its fullest, you might actually¬†have¬†to run a whole business…

Which means you need to keep track of finances, customer service, branding, legal issues, government regulations, managing team members, operational and delivery systems, technology, accounting and tax compliance, research and development, banking and cash flow management, and the opinions and needs of partners, spouses, and family.

Kind of ruins the mood, doesn’t it?

This is the reason I run into SOOOO many “marketing junkies without a home” in my line of work: ¬†Genuinely proficient people who really DO know how to sell, but lack the time, energy, and resources to put the whole package together and run a business of their own.

It can be a little demoralizing… and at first these people start to think that perhaps what they’re learning about marketing is wrong. ¬†Or that there’s some “secret sauce” they’re really missing. ¬†Or that there’s “something wrong with them” and they’ll never get it…but inevitably it’s just that they fell in love with the sexy side of marketing and didn’t understand the size of the mountain they were signing up to climb as a full business owner.

Marketing is a sexy siren indeed!

Thankfully there’s a solution…and that solution is letting other people run their businesses while you coach them through their marketing.

Despite all the bad jokes about coaches, the truth is when it’s done right EVERYBODY¬†wins. ¬†That’s because a great business and marketing coach has the luxury of focusing all their efforts on THINKING about another person’s business. ¬†They not distracted by the necessity of executing the work, managing the people, or spending the resources to accomplish the goals…

Sure the coach is accountable. ¬†There’s nothing which makes a client leave faster than bad advice…but that’s much different than the natural disincentive which exists for¬†a business owner to see what actually needs to be done. ¬†When you’re the one who’s gotta lift the heavy weights, you tend¬†to want to leave the gym. ¬†There’s a reason people do better when they work with trainers… if you’ll permit the metaphor.

A great business coach is always in the business of showing clients “the next right thing” to do, regardless of how painful it might be. ¬†And because “the next right thing” improves profits when you get it right, the owner’s all too happy to keep going.

Now here’s the best thing…

When you know how to identify and attract the right kinds of clients (established businesses–and there are millions of them–which meet a certain set of criteria) you’ll find¬†EIGHT¬†hidden profit opportunities just waiting for you¬†“the business coach” to come in and create explosive growth.¬†They’re almost always just sitting there waiting to be discovered.¬† Point them out and look like a genius.

All you have to do is pull one of these ideas out of your bag of tricks to¬†immediately multiply the profits of your clients in your first couple of sessions. ¬†Once your client has earned this kind of immediate return on investment‚ÄĒoften even before they’ve paid your first month’s bill!‚ÄĒit becomes simple for them to justify paying your premium fees for years on end.

In fact, the marketing-junkies-turned-business-coaches who specialize in a particular niche, channel, etc are probably the people who go from zero to six figures fastest.

Which is why we’ve been hard at work creating a program to help YOU¬†take your passion for marketing and turn it into a lucrative, fun, and rewarding career. ¬†Just a peak at what you’ll get…

  • You’ll get to use OUR systems for attracting¬†dream clients…
  • You’ll get to use OUR systems for¬†multiplying their¬†profits so they’ll be interested in paying your premium fees…
  • You’ll get to use OUR extensive training library to educate YOUR clients. ¬†(Save a tremendous amount of time establishing trust and buy-in for your coaching process and business advice by simply pointing clients to the right link and letting them watch a video or read a cheat sheet)…
  • You’ll get to work with us personally each week to develop your own niche, marketing materials, and plan of attack…
  • And if you’re one of the 30 people to join us this fall, you’ll get a VERY significant Founder’s discount!

If you think you MIGHT be interested you should do two things right away:

Even if you don’t plan to work with us, I’d encourage you to watch the videos or listen to the MP3s. ¬†Especially #2 about attracting dream clients. ¬†You’ll be glad you did!

Onwards and Upwards (even if sometimes a little sideways)…

The Very Good Dr. G ūüôā

 

 

The 8 Biggest Traffic Mistakes (Ever)

If you’re a marketing junkie like me, the word “Traffic” lights up your¬†lizard brain brighter than a hydrogen bomb! ¬†But did you know this can¬†lead¬†you far-astray from what you really want to accomplish?

It’s 100% true.

It’s been a little more than ten¬†years since I first successfully drove traffic to a website and made more money than it cost to get it there. ¬†Since then I’ve learned a LOT about traffic, much¬†of which is counter-intuitive…

In fact, it took me more than ten years to put this together because it’s so counter-intuitive. ¬† I didn’t want to know a lot of this. ¬†I really wanted to believe otherwise. ¬†And so does practically every other entrepreneur¬†I’ve run into (at least at first.) ¬†So even though these killer traffic insights were staring me in the face all these years, it’s only recently I was able to really put them together into a cohesive philosophy.

I was able to figure this all out only¬†because I chose to teach, build an agency, etc. ¬†Which¬†not only put me in contact with some of the strongest internet marketers in the world, but gave me the opportunity to see the dollars-in-to-dollars-out results of dozens of¬†traffic philosophies, strategies, and actions in hundreds of campaigns. ¬†(And a recent interview I granted to Travis Cody, author of “Cure Overwhelm Now,” also helped me articulate them for myself)

So perhaps I can spare you some of the pain I went through and help you to leapfrog your way to¬†a profitable flow of visitors? ¬†But before we do, just a word of warning OK? ¬†This is most definitely a “red pill vs. blue pill” situation:

“You take the blue pill, the story ends. ¬†You wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. ¬†You take the red pill, you stay in wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.” – Morpheus to Neo in “The Matrix”

You choose the red pill?  Good for you.  OK, here goes:

THE EIGHT BIGGEST TRAFFIC MISTAKES (EVER)

TRAFFIC MISTAKE #1 РCHASING IT:  You may have heard me discuss this before but no treatment of traffic would be complete without the notion of traffic chasing as a sign of a fundamentally wrong marketing paradigm.  

That’s because there’s really no such thing as a traffic problem. ¬†All traffic problems are really conversion problems in disguise. ¬†If you can sell a higher percentage of visitors on not only a front end product, but a whole catalog of back end products and services, then you can afford to pay more than anyone else in the market for traffic.

Let’s say I net $3 per visitor because I’ve played “the long game” and thoroughly developed my funnel. ¬†I convert better on the front end, have more immediate upsells in place, and more high-end back ends too. ¬† But most of my competitors only net $1. ¬† How much do you want to be a bunch of them would send ME their traffic if I offered them $1.50? ¬†Even $2?

Not all of them would, of course.  But the traffic market would definitely start to tilt in my favor in this situation.  And I could afford to bid a LOT higher for paid traffic, buy more SEO services, hire more people to build my social media presence,

Then, with more traffic in hand, I could do more tests, build better converting back ends, and generally achieve escape velocity leaving my competitors in my dust.

Traffic is never a problem when you’ve build a marketing machine with superior conversion and back end economics!

MISTAKE #2 – SPREADING YOURSELF TOO THIN: ¬†It might seem safer in theory to build “four pillars” of traffic underneath your business right away… but in practice I find this really isn’t the case. ¬†Because it takes a LOT¬†more time, energy, and resources to master one platform than everyone seems to think. ¬†And the vast majority of marketers I’ve met who’ve built a 7 figure business did so by focusing on ONE¬†traffic generation method for quite some time. ¬†Perhaps they couldn’t scale to 7 figures on that one traffic source, but they got their system¬†running profitably and maxed out what they could do on it first.

So yes, AdWords, Facebook PPC, Bing, SEO, etc could shut you down at any given time.  But you know what shuts you down faster?  Spreading your resources across them before any of them is reliably working for you.

This only makes sense… we live in a very competitive world. ¬†You’ve got to establish and fortify a beachhead with the forces you have or else your competitors will take it from you. ¬†Then grow from that¬†one¬†stronghold.

MISTAKE #3 – FOCUSING ON EFFICIENCY AT THE EXPENSE OF VOLUME: ¬†After you’re firmly “in the stream”, you can usually get ahead faster by throttling the gas and accepting a certain amount of waste than trying to optimize your front end marketing. ¬†There are four¬†reasons for this:

  • You can generally add profit per visitor at a higher rate by focusing on¬†back end products and services and/or taking better care of your existing customers than you can by¬†optimizing your advertising spend and front end conversion rate…
  • Optimizing the front end beyond a certain point not only leads to a “point of diminishing returns” where it takes progressively more time, money, and effort to get progressively smaller gains…
  • The gains you DO make from¬†front end efficiency work¬†will often be made by convincing progressively less qualified people to purchase. ¬†This, in turn, yields a lower upsell rate, more customer service expense, and a generally lower quality business experience…
  • Your front end is very visible, but your back end is not. ¬†Your competitors will relentlessly copy any wins you make on the front end. ¬†But it requires a LOT more time, money¬†¬†and effort for them to spy on your back end…particularly if you build a complex system with many contingencies and payment gates. ¬†So¬†all but the most sophisticated competitor will generally leave your back end alone. ¬†(Therefore, adding back ends provides you with progressively more competitive insulation)…

Despite this I find 95% of marketers get obsessed with front end efficiency.  They ask me endless questions about how to reduce their Adwords costs, for example, when what they should be asking me instead is how they could afford to spend more.

In a recent consultation I did for two friends, for example, I learned they had just gotten their first few sales of a¬†$5,000 service in AdWords. ¬†They¬†spent a lot of the consultation asking me questions about broad match, geo-targeting, etc. ¬†But when I looked at their total adspend of only $100 I said “Dudes… who cares if you make a $5,000 sale for $100 vs. $50. ¬†Put the pedal to the metal and make twenty sales this month. ¬†Even if it costs you $500 to make each¬†sale, you’ll still have a lot more in your bank account and we can clean up the mess later!”

It admittedly takes time to understand this.  And it takes even more balls to implement it. Further, because most people are NOT in the fortunate situation my friends are in, it can be a frustrating experiencing working on all the pieces and parts of the complex system which make it possible to get there.

So let’s all please¬†just make note of this advice while you’re here so you’ll recognize the situation when it occurs.

TRAFFIC MISTAKE #4: Taking Too Long to Delegate Traffic Management: ¬†¬†Most people have something like the following criteria in mind when it comes to hiring a traffic manager: ¬†“Gee, I’ll have to add the management costs to my cost per lead or per sale, so I really can’t delegate this until I’m making the inflated lead or sales cost back. ¬†Or, at the very least, until I’m sure the manager will be able to REDUCE my cost per lead or per sale by at least as much as I’m paying them.”

But this is a false economy, because it doesn’t include the opportunity cost of your time. ¬†¬†And in many situations, you can probably earn more than the additional management costs by focusing elsewhere in your business. ¬†So if your manager can only hold the costs steady but free¬†YOU to work elsewhere, you’re ahead of the game.

Plus, a smart manager is a good marketing strategist too. ¬†So you’ll get an extra person for your team… another pair of eyes on your system, and another set of thoughts and strategies to consider as you go forward.

The question isn’t “How much is it going to cost me to work with a traffic manager”, the question is “how much is it costing me NOT to!”

Note: My point here isn’t that everyone should work with a manager, but rather that most businesses wait far too long and set the bar way too high for evaluating when it’s time to do so. ¬†Please also note that as of¬†the time of this publication I no longer represent any traffic management service, so this is simply good business advice from me to you!

TRAFFIC MISTAKE #5: SHORT TIME HORIZONS:   Playing with the big boys usually means you have to go negative for a few months, sometimes the better part of a year.  Get in the game and stay in the game until you figure it out.  Make money with back ends.  Be willing to use a loss leader.  Getting the customer is everything.  The name of the game is staying in the game until you win the game!

I can’t tell you how many businesses I’ve seen who could triple their size tomorrow if they just had the nerve to go to a bank to fund their cash flow curve. ¬†Internet marketers don’t usually think like business people though. ¬†We think we’ve got to make money right away.

Sure, keep working at that. ¬†But if you’re getting customers and you’re breaking even four to six months down the line (I’ve gone as much as 10 to get things started) then consider¬†more traditional routes to scale up. ¬†With more volume, you¬†can not only realize the profits sitting on the table (over time), but you can test more back ends and continue to improve the economics of the business overall. ¬†And with this confidence you can also continue to work on ways to¬†flatten the cash flow curve.

Does it kill your dream to have to go four months out to make your money back?  Get over it.  Welcome to the real world!

TRAFFIC MISTAKE #6: LACK OF FINANCIAL FORECASTING: ¬†I find very few businesses have taken the time to put every last product, expense, and conversion rate into a big hairy spreadsheet. ¬†And so they don’t even know WHEN they break even, ¬†HOW MUCH cash it’s going to take to get there, and what their projected profits are actually likely to be.

Having such a spreadsheet (and staring at it while running what if scenarios until your eyes bleed)¬†is a tremendous competitive¬†advantage. ¬† Because every piece and part of that sheet represents a LEVER you can adjust until the whole machine is humming like you need it to be. ¬†What’s more, it gives you a clear and concise picture to compare to reality as you roll forward. ¬†You can see exactly where you need to work.

And eventually you’ve got enough levers in place that you’re virtually invulnerable to things everyone else in your market freaks out about.

TRAFFIC MISTAKE #7:¬†UNDER CAPITALIZATION IN BOTH TIME AND MONEY: I find very few businesses have seriously considered what it’s going to take to maintain the traffic they’ll require to reach their business goals. ¬†As a result they charge into battle way under-capitalized and with a blind eye to how long it might take to really establish themselves.

In very competitive markets, it’s not unusual to take 18 months to work your way into a solid position. ¬†Have you planned well enough to¬†keep the ship floating during this protracted time period? ¬†(You’ll need a good financial forecast to do this, of course!)

TRAFFIC MISTAKE #8: NOT PLANNING OUT AND IMPLEMENTING TESTS IN SETS: This is something I’ve only recently realized. ¬†I used to just always ask myself (or my mastermind buddies) “what’s the next test I should do?”

But the truth is, in order to figure out what works in a market you really have to “carry the torch” through a whole series of tests.

For example, maybe you don’t know whether your front end should be a $7 ebook, a physical book at the same price, a $200 DVD set, a free consultation, a paid consultation,¬†a free video, free¬†whitepaper, etc.

It’s really only through a set of pre-planned and prioritized tests that you can figure this out. ¬†Unless you’ve got so much traffic up front that you can rotate all of them at once… which is rarely the case if you’re operating on a budget and don’t have your back ends in place yet.

In the absence of this prioritized list, you have manic depressive episodes every time something goes right or wrong. ¬†But when you’ve got the list in place, it‚Äôs just another test in the series. ¬†And you’re just gathering information until you’ve got the intelligence you need to roll forward.

Think in “testing sets”, not individual tests.

OK, so there you have it.  The eight biggest traffic mistakes this old man has seen, and the best ways to combat them.

Now, if you ARE a marketing junkie like me but you haven’t yet found¬†the right business of your own to apply it to, let me ask you a serious question: ¬†Is it possible that the business you need to be in is business itself? ¬†Because Terry Dean and I are about to launch an incredible new certification program for Business Coaches…

And that might be the fastest way for you to turn your passion for marketing and business in to a lucrative, fun, and meaningful career!

Sound like you? ¬†If so you’ll want to do two things:

  1. Get on the priority notifications list. ¬†We’re taking a very small¬†founder’s group at a very significant discount in just a week or two, and it is likely to sell out very fast. ¬†This list will give you notice a full hour before the rest of our audience.
  2. Watch your email for the free videos. ¬†(You can see the first one here. ¬†It’s about the Golden Glove, which many of you probably are already familiar with. ¬†But take this refresher anyway because it is the foundation of free video #2, to be released tomorrow, which will show you¬†a proven system for attracting dream clients)

Onwards and Upwards,

The Very Good Dr. G ūüôā

PS –¬†Turn Your Passion for Marketing and Business into a Lucrative, Rewarding, and Fun Career‚ĶUsing Our Turnkey-Systems to Create Instant Credibility, Attract Dream Clients, Multiply Their Profits, and Live the Lifestyle You Desire!

 

The Fabulous Dr. Jacobson

Did you know AC/DC uses¬†essentially the same four chords in ALL their songs? ¬†And that this four-chord formula has earned them over $200,000,000.00? ¬†In this intriguing interview with the Fabulous Dr. Jacobson, we’ll talk about¬†focusing in and finding your own four-chord formula. ¬†Click play¬†now… if for no other reason than there’s nothing better to do in August than¬†to spend a half hour listening to two old doctors chatting about marketing.

G ūüôā

Is Free Advice Worthless?

We’ve all heard the age old adage “Free advice is worth what you pay for it”… or, essentially, worth nothing. ¬†But if that were really 100% true then nobody would bother to blog, right? ¬†I mean, we all want to get paid. ¬†And certainly the smart customer knows they get MORE value from paid products and services if they’re working with an ethical marketer.

But is free advice really worthless? ¬†Or is that just something which people who don’t really know how to use it say? ¬†My¬†tests suggest the answer is contextual. ¬†In other words, the value of free advice depends on whether the prospect actually expended some time, energy, or risk to ASK for it!

If you look at most marketing forums (or talk to most novice coaches), you’ll find free advice is usually dispensed for the benefit of making the giver feel brilliant, without regards to what the recipient really wants to know and is ready to integrate.¬† It therefore usually falls on polite-but-deaf ears.¬† (To paraphrase Samuel Butler: “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still…which he may adhere to, yet disown, for reasons to himself best known”)

On the other hand, when people have sought you out and raised their hand to REQUEST help for a specific problem, free advice can actually be quite useful. ¬†This “hand raising” can come in the form of specifically searching for information, signing up for your email list, connecting with you via a well-branded Facebook Fan Page, Twitter Account, etc. ¬† And to be certain, here too you’ll find many, many people who really aren’t “ready” for the full force of what you’ve got to offer.

But on an actuarial basis, the raised hand really does pre-dispose people to act on your advice. ¬†I could quote hundreds of stories of people who’ve NEVER paid me a dime yet used the prolific, FREE information and solutions we provide in our follow up sequences and interviews to dramatically change their lives or businesses. ¬†Literally hundreds.

If you’ve been following me for any length of time, there’s a good chance this includes YOU.

Moreover, because I run my blog and primary email sequence like a “radio show” and not simply a promotional device with one and only one goal (i.e. I don’t remove people after they purchase a front end product but rather want them to continue listening to the show for the duration of their interest in my teachings)¬†my customers continue to benefit from my FREE advice for a very long time AFTER they’ve begun to give me money.

Beyond this, I can point to dozens who, based upon their consumption of our FREE advice for years and years, finally came around and purchased something ultra-high-end. ¬†¬†For example, my typical $1,000/hr client rises up through the free systems for years before making the “sudden jump” to purchase the time at these rates.

Last year I also got a GIGANTIC corporate project without having to do virtually ANY of the selling usually associated projects of this size…from a guy who was on my FREE list for EIGHT YEARS without purchasing anything first! ¬†

Plus, I think it really furthers a coach’s mission in the world to offer free advice for those who ask.¬† You can impact a hundred times as many people if you freely give of yourself in public mediums where people have tuned in and/or raised their hands. ¬†And when you’re old and grey like me (oy vey, I’m turning 50 in a few weeks!), it’s nice to wake up in the morning knowing your work has really made a difference. ¬†Very nice.

Of course, a mature person knows that PAYING for your time and/or products allows you to put more into them.¬† PAID products and services inevitably provide a better value. ¬†This is why, for example, I don’t hesitate to purchase consulting time from people who could otherwise be talked into giving it to me for free. ¬†Why TAKE from them and make it harder for them to concentrate on my issues when I could GIVE to them and make them happy to really focus on working to genuinely help?

And by all means, don’t confuse what I’m saying with the idea that we should all become saints and eschew financial goals. ¬†Get paid… good God, get paid! ¬†(Your banker isn’t going to say “Oh, you helped a lot of people? ¬†Let’s give you a pass on this month’s mortgage payment!”)

But FREE is an extremely valuable tool in both marketing and life. ¬†It eliminates resistance. ¬†It makes initial connections. ¬†And it does a LOT of good in the world…

For people who genuinely ask.

Fred Gleeck once told me “Tell people everything you know and they’ll pay you to tell them again”…

I’ve found that largely true with just a few modifications.

If you tell people everything you know, there are a subset of more serious people who’ll want you to tell them in a more SYSTEMATIC way. ¬†And another subset who’ll want you to CUSTOMIZE the information for them in a personal relationship (coaching). ¬†And still another subset who’ll want you to do it for them (consulting). ¬†And ANOTHER subset who’ll want to be licensed to do it in your name.

FREE is the spark that ignites this fire.

Now, speaking of FREE, Terry Dean and I will be promoting a series of free business coaching videos in the next few weeks leading up to my 50th birthday. ¬† He and I are launching the founder’s class of our new Business Coaching Certification. ¬†This will be a revolutionary, SYSTEMS BASED program to help you attract dream business coaching clients and quickly improve their profits so they’ll happily pay your fees.

Right after Labor Day we’ll be taking on a very small group (at a very significant discount)¬†and working with them closely in exchange for their willingness to serve as case studies. ¬†Watch your email for the FREE videos and priority notifications list. ¬†You won’t want to miss this one!

Onwards!

The Very Good Dr. Glenn ūüôā

PS РCurrent students and past graduates of my personal coaching certification program who have completed their tuition payments (only) will be able to deduct their full personal coaching tuition from the cost of the business coaching certification.

PPS – If you’d like to explore my other PAID products and services in the meantime, please click here for the full list.

PPPS – My own business coaching practice has been closed to new clients for more than two years now and I have 129 people on the waiting list, so the odds of getting me personally as a business coach are unfortunately now very small. ¬†I didn’t originally intend to keep it closed for so long, but there’s only one of me and it just made more sense to concentrate on developing training systems which would allow me to create more qualified coaches. ¬†Thanks in advance for your understanding.

 

 

The Other Million Dollar Marketing Question Nobody Ever Asks

I’ve been teaching entrepreneurs for a decade now. ¬†I tend to attract beginners and advanced marketers alike. ¬†The thing my customers¬†have in common is a level of seriousness other educators don’t seem to attract…plus a penchant for detailed analysis and¬†“left-brained spreadsheet-type thinking”

But they also tend to¬†neglect the MOST important marketing question of all. ¬†Which is understandable, because this most important question is also the most difficult to answer…and the most unpleasant one to think about too!

In fact, it’s so unpleasant, marketing educators rarely (if ever) discuss it…

You see, the most important marketing question is “WHEN?”

Entrepreneurs will talk about anything and everything besides WHEN.

  • Ask them WHAT they sell or are planning to sell and most have a fairly articulate idea. ¬†(Yes, beginners obsess about this for a while before settling on something, but eventually they almost all do)…
  • Ask them HOW they plan to sell it and they’ve got¬†all sorts of traffic and conversion methods in mind. ¬†In fact, there’s almost nothing which gets an entrepreneurs “feel-good-juices” flowing more than talking about traffic and conversion techniques. ¬†There are no¬†drugs at¬†a “marketer’s rave”…just people talking about AdWords, Facebook, Video Sales Letters, etc!
  • Ask them WHY they’re going to sell it and there’ll be¬†fewer people who can answer¬†articulately… but even then most entrepreneurs get around to understanding you’ve got to have a strong “WHY”¬†to make things happen…so they eagerly start articulating the mission behind their project…

But ask them WHEN it’s going to start selling, and more importantly WHEN they’re going to start earning a significant profit from their project, and most entrepreneurs just shrug their shoulders.

Because, you see, the answer in most of their minds is “SOON.” ¬†And as long as they can keep thinking “SOON”, the feel-good-brain-juice keeps on squirting.

But do me a favor… go check your calendars. ¬†Do any of you see a day which is actually marked “SOON” on it?

People HATE to talk about WHEN because WHEN is a fantasy killer.  WHEN forces that all-too-unpleasant shot of reality into the marketing rave.  WHEN takes away the feel-good juice.

But WHEN is also what separates the men from the boys.   (Or the women from the girls.  Or the gorillas from the chimpanzees)

Deciding WHEN your project will need to make a certain amount of profit is a brave person’s game. ¬†Because it forces you to allocate resources. ¬†To earn a certain amount by a definite date you’ll need to make very good guesstimates about:

  • HOW MANY tests you’ll need to execute by that date (and at every step along the way) in order to reach the goal…
  • Exactly WHEN your product, packaging, customer service systems, and other operational elements will need to be ready…
  • HOW MUCH traffic you’ll need at every step…
  • WHERE you’re going to get that traffic, and WHEN you’re going to take the necessary steps to do so (affiliate promotions, PPC, SEO, social media, etc)…
  • WHO will need to be involved in your project, and WHEN they will need to act…
  • HOW MUCH money will you need to spend to put all this in place?
  • WHAT will you offer to affiliates and joint venture partners (and what deadlines will you use to motivate action)…
  • And so much more!

Asking WHEN is THE process which forces your dream to crystallize into a discrete and executable plan. ¬† But there’s no sugar coating it… this is a painful process.

Projecting your WHEN is also always an inaccurate process by definition.  Because there are so many impossible-to-predict-with-any-degree-of-certainty variables to consider along the way.

  • You can’t know exactly how many tests will be required to reach your goal. ¬†And the more complex your system is (the more you break it up into small pieces which can each be optimized), the more permutations and combinations of tests there are to guesstimate. ¬†Moreover, marketers really do tend to horrendously underestimate this particular part of the project because “elephants always look small in the distance”… there are always more obstacles than you think there will be, and things always take longer than you plan for. ¬†Still… if you want to be successful, estimate you must! ¬†(The most successful military Generals like to quote Eisenhower “Plans are worthless but planning is everything nonetheless.” ¬†What that means is that the army who has a well thought through strategic plan is more likely the victor, even thought that plan itself may need to radically change the moment the battle begins. ¬†It’s the process of planning which forces the necessary thoughts and decisions for success)
  • There’s no way to know how much volume any given affiliate will send your way. ¬†You never know if they’re going to change the email you send them, tweak the subject line and attract a totally different audience, or mail to a smaller section of their list, etc. ¬†Still, you’ve got to guesstimate what they might do…
  • Paid traffic costs and volume varies greatly. ¬†The major platforms are prone to tweaking their algorithms. ¬†They might not give you the impression share (exposure) you were counting on. ¬†Or they might give you a lot more. ¬†You’ve got to do what you can to estimate this based upon available data… knowing all the while you’re going to be wrong.
  • People are perhaps the most unreliable of all. ¬†Your employees will get sick, freak out, under-perform, over-perform, etc.
  • It might take you longer to understand a given traffic source you’re trying…
  • Or you might come across a windfall opportunity you just didn’t expect

There’s NO¬†way to know for sure…

But spreadsheet loving nerds (like me) who take their best guesses and plot it all out not only wind up with a reasonable estimate of when they’re going to get to where they need to be, they wind up with a MODEL they can adjust for any given variable when reality hits the fan.

And since “the name of the game is staying in the game until you win the game” (my favorite thing I ever said, if I do say so myself), asking WHEN is infinitely better than living on feel-good-juice and hoping for the best.

For what it’s worth,

The Very Good Dr. G ūüôā

PS – If you missed the recent opening of my coaching program, I’ve got three options for you.
(1) If you mostly want to work on your website conversion, traffic sources, etc., consider working with my partner in MakeThemBuy.com at approximately half my rate;
(2)¬†If, on the other hand, you want to work on getting over your “head trash” in the business, and/or developing your brand, consider working directly with my wife.

Submit a ticket at www.PsyTechSupport.com if you’re interested in either of these please.
(But do it soon ’cause their time is limited)