Blind Gambling is Not Business
Don’t go into business blind and don’t be led by the blind. Don’t want to be led a stray? Then make sure a company is actually making money before you weigh their advice heavily. I don’t believe luck is the reason most businesses succeed, and for that matter, I think people that believe they control their destiny have a greater success rate in life.
Make sure you read the whole thing so you don’t miss 2016’s business trends and how they relate to the traffic exchange industry.
All Great Businesses have 4 things. Presence, Knowledge, the Ability to Evolve, and Service at Heart.
1. Presence or Brand– It’s interesting that they say 97% of people in our industry won’t make any money and it’s a similar percentage that fail to get themselves out there. They fail to be known, to have a presence, to stand for anything, to become a brand. We devised a tool to help get you out there, Brandmetool. However, brand will ultimately depend on the entire soul of your business, resembling more of the 4 above components combined.
2. Knowledge– Researching things is crucial to your success. I missed that step when I first began and I hope you don’t make the same mistake. It was a turning point for me when I decided to dig in to information about online business as far as knowledge is concerned. Now I have books by my bedside. Keep yourself sharp by reading up. Don’t you want to give yourself the best chance at success? Many big business names will praise self-education.
3. The Ability to Evolve– People are creatures of habit. It can be difficult to change. However, with certainty, one thing we can predict is that things will change. Successful businesses will anticipate it, accept and embrace it, and will boldly try changes. They understand the importance of creating markets, being first to market, and making an industry react to them instead of the other way around.
4. Serving People– Make products to help people. Help others and don’t make me quote Zig Ziglar again stating to help enough people get where they want to go and you get where you need to go 🙂 Customer service is a great way to build relationships and always remember that the way you treat people reflects on your business. Have a heart for people and many will reward you back with a love for your brand.
I wanted to get very specific about success in our industry. Whether you become an affiliate list builder or take on website ownership, these core principles remain critical.
1. Design– You need to look good and show people that your serious. Without design, people will over look what you have to offer on your website. You will lose your customer before they even get in the door. Also, the quality of your advertisement design is directly related to how well they do. We can refer you to someone we used for design in the past, but honestly, the designs of our websites are not as good as we want them to be.
2. Programming– Having special things about your site makes you stick out. I understand many will take on a commercial script, but if you do that, you really need to set out to make yourself unique and offer value with added features. This brings us to the next point. This point has more to do with website ownership.
3. Take Care of Sales– See As a Man SELLeth, Life or Death Business.
4. Don’t be Underfunded– If there is something that really plagues are industry it’s people believing they can set up shop with a bare commercial script and roll in the dough. I have a lot of compassion for people making this mistake as I did it myself.
5. Relationships– To do things right, you really should be meeting people, especially the big names in the industry and forming relationships with them before you release your product. Places to do it include webinars, skype(mcwahl2), facebook, twitter, traffic exchange chats, etc.
The next points I make I want to show you how our industry isn’t an island. Big business trends many times are small business trends as well.
6. Using Video– Sometimes it seems that our industry lags behind technology and trends. Perhaps, a resistance to change. Video will help you to stick out, which many will agree that marketing is a competition for attention. Video gives a personal touch and in our industry it’s under used most likely because people are shy to get in front of the camera. That just makes it easier for you because your gonna do what it takes to be successful. Your gonna get yourself out there right? Take a look at the projections for video use in business from Hubspot.
Image from Hubspot
7. Influencer Marketing– It’s really quite amazing to me how many buying decisions and signups come with the support from big names in the traffic exchange industry. It makes all the sense in the world to network and communicate with them. View how we worked with an industry giant in the Legacy Hits Story. See this previous post how influencer marketing is exploding in all kinds of businesses, 2 Powerful Elements to Influencer Marketing Chemistry.
All this information can be handed out freely, but, now it’s in your hands. You must have the heart to see it all through if you don’t want to become the statistic of the 97% that walk away from the industry empty handed.
Robin, You Should Have Upped Your Sales Game!
Robin Hood’s first appearance dates back to the 14th century in ballads. As you may recall, he steals from the rich and gives to the poor. His end goal was nice, but, obviously the way he went about things was wrong.
My solution, if we could go back 700 years, is that Robin should have just used his brain to create and manage a business. The end result would be the same minus the stealing and scared rich folks.
Recently, it occurred to me how important persuasion is in making things happen. Selling is literally all around us in business and life decisions. We sell our products and we sell our ideas. If you want to go more in depth on sales read As a Man Selleth, Life or Death Business
My point is that Robin could have laid down his bow to organize something that created the wealth that he would give to the poor. Sales and business skills are learned just as firing his arrow to the smallest of targets is. In our industry, sales are greatly overlooked. There is really very little time spent on them when they are so insanely important. Of course, I can’t come up with a good excuse why things are so relaxed throughout the TE Industry. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying we are perfect, but I would say we are ahead of many.
If you want people to create ballads remembering your name because of your great business success then don’t forget the sales game. Persuasion is a curiously powerful thing.
I just have to say it… “The Pen is Mightier Than the Bow” 🙂
As a Man Selleth
Your Business Lives or Dies by Sales. There is no disputing this. Money is the great bottom line, the scoreboard of everything that you are working on in your business: programming, design, marketing, and customer service.
What are some common practices that are greatly overlooked in our industry.
- A Reason to Have a Sale: Everyone likes to get a sale price. You should be planning for that in your pricing. A very easy reason to put something on sale is a Holiday. Most people can relate to that. If a holiday isn’t close by then make a clever, creative campaign or work off the publicity of something your members recognize.
- Make your Sale Visible: Most owners in our business will use login offers. That’s great, but, maybe you want to inform members of a sale in your emails and members area. As this applies to online business in general, how can you inform without disrupting user experience too much.
- What is the Sweet Spot: At what price am I getting the most sales at the maximum price. It’s very mathematical here. We can sell a lot at a lower price or fewer at a higher price. Bottom line, what brings the most money into the business. Test and review your results.
- Look to Stand Out with Your Offer: Use quality video and graphics to draw attention to your offers. The more unique you can make your offers from the competition the better.
- Present the Benefits to Your Customer: Why should your customer make this purchase? Show them the value. Break things down into the savings.
The Selling of an Idea
This discussion will now move much deeper than just moving your product. People once believed that the world was flat. The vast majority did. Someone had to convince the masses that it was round. It takes proof, emotion, and energy to change belief.
“There is No Need to Persuade Anyone of Anything Unless it Helps Them.”
Build your business off the above quote and it will grow stronger and faster. This model has always been the more ethical approach, but in modern times, it’s now critical to utilize this. Power is in the hands of the customer with social media. Word of mouth advertising has become so strong that you wouldn’t want to do it any other way.
Lastly, I want to talk about followings and the influencers that lead them. Here is a recent post that shows ignoring influencers in helping you sell your product or ideas is a very bad idea. Read 2 Powerful Elements to Influencer Marketing Chemistry.
We follow a person’s past ideas, current ideas, their present, and anticipated future. Momentum and energy are a big part of networks headed by influencers that sell ideas. One of the most powerful components of modern networking is live streaming. Social media such as blab.im allows for real-time interaction. When people can’t be with each other live this is the next best thing. People want to see who is behind a business so they know who is accountable and they want the experience of building energy together.
In summary, selling has very researchable concepts. This post just touches the surface. Remember to question everything because momentum and energy of a group don’t necessarily mean they are right. The world once believed it was flat.