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Archive for the ‘Business Strategies’ Category

Are Seminars a Waste of Money?

When I think about all the influences that have affected my business in a good way, I’d have to say that live seminars have had the most profound effect. From learning new insights and strategies to meeting new friends and networking, seminars should be a vital part of your “continuing education” for your business. Most of my friends, JVs, speaking engagements and quantum leaps in my income have all come from live events…period.

I’ll never forget the first Big Seminar I attended (Armand Morin’s huge event). I was there as I guest of my friend, David Hancock of Morgan James Publishing. It was my first live event ever and I didn’t know ANYONE! I had just completed my Public Domain Code Book and had big dreams of connecting with someone…anyone…who would consider promoting the product to their list. I didn’t even have an affiliate program in place…lol. There were a few folks that I had started following and really wanted to meet them. One of those “gurus” was Pat O’Bryan, now a good friend of mine.

I wanted to show Pat my book because I knew he was using Public Domain content for product creation and was making a killing at it. The only problem was that every time I saw him at that Big Seminar, I chickened out. On the last day, right before the end of the event, I made up my mind that, no matter what, I was going to talk to Pat. As I walked up to open the doors to enter the event ballroom, the door suddenly swung open and nearly whacked me in the head, and standing right in front of me was Pat. We nearly ran into each other…lol. Well, long story short, I gave Pat a copy of my book, which ultimately resulted in him promoting it to his list, using it to teach from in his seminars and ultimately being invited to speak at several of his events. All because I was at THAT Big Seminar and talked with him. Seminars have also resulted in other important friendships and relationships with some of my favorite people in the world…some well known marketers and others who are just starting out!

And then there is the teaching…

Some of the best business strategies I’ve learned (AND implemented) came from live events! Most speakers really over deliver, but be prepared to take LOTS of notes. More importantly, when you get home, DO something with that info. By implementing strategies I learned at live events, I have ALWAYS seen my income jump…sometimes by a factor of 4 or 5. That’s powerful!

So…as you can tell…I strongly recommend that you make the investment in your business (and yourself) and get out to live events. Meet people, pay attention, hang out in the restaurant or bar and take lots of notes! If I am at the event, talk to me! I LOVE meeting my subscribers and blog readers! As a matter of fact, you will have an opportunity to benefit from the BEST seminar out there…the one I attended first that helped launch my online career…Big Seminar. The LAST one ever is happening November 5-7, 2010 in Las Vegas. I will be there networking and learning and I’d LOVE to connect with you there. This is ONE investment in your business that I cannot recommend highly enough.

Will I see you there? Hope so!

Is Your Business Stagnate or Flowing?

We can often learn much about our personal life and business by being observant of the world around us. Our planet in all its glory is the most successful, most systematized and most profitable business model there is. The key for us is to pay attention. Take one of our basic and most precious resources, for instance…WATER. A simple study and observation about water and its properties can teach you more about achieving success in your business than most of the top-selling business books combined. In a word, it’s all about FLOW!

Now there are a LOT of ways that we can spin this analogy of water flow with business, but there is one specific example that may “click” for you, especially if you’re selling (or trying to sell) online. First of all, like water, we must have “flow” happening in our business to keep it fresh and vibrant. There is a reason we have terms like “cash flow.” When water begins to pool, it stagnates. Algae starts forming and it becomes home to all kinds of insects. Eventually, it evaporates and is gone. Does that sound like your business? I hope not! But if flow has stopped somewhere, stagnation has begun, and you must make the necessary changes to re-establish flow.

Selling online (or offline) comes down to just a few key components: 1) A prospect with a need; 2) A solution to the need; 3) A conversion mechanism; and 4) Followup. That’s it. If there is a breakdown in any one or more of these components, stagnation occurs. For instance, we can have all the traffic we want (prospects) with a great product (solution), but our salescopy (conversion mechanism) sucks. The result? Nothing happens…stagnation. Perhaps you have great traffic and a great sales page, but the product isn’t what the prospect was looking for. Refunds ensue and so does stagnation.

For the sake of illustration, let’s extend out water analogy a bit further to this process by looking at hydroelectric dams. You start of with a massive amount of water that is flowing slowly (your traffic). With the help of a dam, you concentrate the flow of the river into a rushing torrent, which, as it flows by, turns turbines (conversion mechanism), which in turn, creates electricity (solution). Then, the river continues its flow downstream. I want you to think about this example and consider how you can apply it to your “work flow.” The concentrated flow of the water, when directed through a conversion process, creates the solution, which, in this case, is another type of flow…electricity. And as we know, electricity is a solution we ALL need!

So let me ask you…does YOUR business have flow? Is your traffic flowing? Is your sales page or squeeze page converting? Is your product a solution people want or need? Now, with each of these questions, if the answer is “NO,” I want you to consider the following…

If flow isn’t happening, why? What steps can you take right now that will create a different result than you are currently achieving? What will change or increase the FLOW in your business in a significant way?

I hope you found this analogy helpful and I’d love to hear your own thoughts and insights concerning it. Please feel free to add your comments below. And, if you would do me a favor, could you help me increase the “flow” of this post by sharing it with your friends and followers on Facebook, Twitter and Digg? Thank you!

Why You Will *NOT* Make Money from Public Domain Content!

You may have noticed lately that I haven’t been talking about Public Domain content as much now as I have in the past. So what happened? Have I given up on the Public Domain? Have I milked it for all its worth and now am onto bigger things? Have I gone underground and am keeping all the new tricks to myself? Nothing could be further from the truth.

The truth is that I have (temporarily) shifted away some from teaching about Public Domain content because of YOU!

You see, I discovered a growing trend with many of my subscribers that really concerned me. They would hear me talk about the Public Domain and share what’s possible with the content and get excited. They would invest in my Public Domain courses, find TONS of great Public Domain content, but then, something happened. It is this “something” that concerned me, and it is the PRIMARY reason why you will NOT make money from Public Domain content!

I found that many of my customers…perhaps even you…didn’t DO anything with the Public Domain content they found. It just sat there on their hard drive taking up space. Tons of ebooks, images, magazines and more…all with great potential, all doing nothing to make them money.

I wondered, “What about the blog posts and articles you were going to write using PD content? What about all the product ideas you had using PD content as the source? What about the books, e-books, videos, audios, posters, membership sites and all the other wonderful products you can create using Public Domain content? Quite honestly, I was puzzled. I wondered why so many would take those important first steps of action, but then stop. A little investigating revealed the answer. And this discovery is what shifted my business.

What I discovered was that few people actually knew and understood what their next steps should be. They found great content, and in some cases, even created products, but didn’t know how to get those products online. They weren’t sure how to build the websites and set up the download pages. They didn’t understand how to get traffic to their site (if they had one) and, in many cases, the idea of using social media was confusing at best. It seemed that even knowing the right tools and software for creating those products was elusive.

Can you relate? Is this where YOU are in your own business? I think you will agree that it would be irresponsible of me (or anyone else) to ignore the problems you might be struggling with. And so, because of these revelations, I’m changing how I approach my product creation, my interaction with my subscribers and customers and with YOU! No, I haven’t given up on the Public Domain. As a matter of fact, it is playing a key role in some of the new projects I’m working on right now! The task right now, however, is to see YOU succeed even MORE with Public Domain content!

So I’m curious…what roadblocks are YOU facing with taking the next step? What is the ONE THING you believe would make all the difference in the world in helping you become successful (or more successful) online? Please post your thoughts and comments below. And if you would, please also share this with your friends and subscribers through the Twitter, Facebook and Digg links. Thanks!

Business Success Reboot, Part Two

Lately, I’ve been exploring the question of…

“If I had to do it all over…to start over from scratch…WHAT would I do different?”

What I want to share with you today is the ONE skill I learned that made a HUGE difference in my income. And I want to share this because, when I first started out, I was told (just like I’m telling you) that I needed to understand this and I thought I had it all figured out…that I knew what I was doing.

Boy was I wrong!

My first product took me 11 months to create…and I wouldn’t recommend ANYONE take that long to create products. As a matter of fact, now I create several new products every single week…but that’s another story. Anyway, once I had my product created and the website designed I was ready to make some money. After all, I deserved some compensation for all the hard work I had put into creating it (the product was the Public Domain Code Book).

When I designed the site, I felt comfortable with the graphics because that’s what I did for a living at the time. But there was ONE element that I held some real concern about…writing the copy for the sales letter. I looked at what a couple other websites had used and thought I’d try to model them. I was
TOLD that I needed to understand the basics of good copywriting but I ignored those who told me that.

So I wrote what I thought was some pretty clever copy in the vane of Indiana Jones meets the Public Domain and I was SO proud. I absolutely LOVED how the copy and the sales letter turned out. Now for the REAL test…sending traffic to the site to make some serious cash! I bought some traffic through Adwords (another nightmare I’ll save for a future installment) and suddenly, I realized I was facing worst-case scenario…I spent a LOT of money on Adwords and made ZERO sales. I couldn’t tell my wife, she would have killed me if she knew how much money I spent with Google with nothing to show.

When I began to consider what could have been wrong, the message about the importance of copy came back to haunt me. I had to face the fact that my sales copy sucked. I went on a frenzied quest to learn the basics of copywriting to see if I could even salvage all the time and effort I had put into this first project. It paid off. I re-wrote the sales page based on what I had learned and sales began to happen…a few here and there, and then more and more. Since then, that first product has sold over $50,000 and is still selling today!

What made the difference?

It wasn’t the product and it wasn’t the traffic…it was the SALES COPY! That’s what made the difference. It was an expensive lesson to learn and one that I want to help you avoid. That’s why I created, “Copywriting Basics That Work!” You’ll discover how to avoid ALL the mistakes that kept my first product from selling, as well as the secrets to creating sales letters, video sales letters and e-mail promotions convert like crazy.

Do yourself a favor (and for the benefit of your current and future sales), take a few moments to watch the video I created and discover the KEY to finding true success online.

Committed to your ongoing success!

Copywriting Basics That Work

Business Success Reboot, Part One

I have been giving a LOT of thought to the question, “If I had to do it all over again in my business, what would I do the same, and what would I do different?” As I contemplated the ideas, I realized that there might be some benefit to my musings for others…especially those who are just starting out. So over the course of the next several post, we will explore the “Do’s” and “Don’ts” of creating your own online business from my own experience and point of view. What I share will not be the “be all end all” type of guidance. Rather, it will be a reflection of the pitfalls and triumphs I experienced through the process of selling online.

Okay…we’re going to start off with a huge lesson…definitely the BIGGEST lesson I’ve learned through the business-building process.

The very FIRST thing I would do differently if I were just starting my business today, would be to learn how to think like a successful entrepreneur as quickly as possible and at whatever cost I could afford! Here’s why: Products, strategies, even relationships are NOT what cause you to be or become successful. While these are certainly pieces of the puzzle, they alone will not make you successful. Only a success-oriented mindset and belief system will truly create the type of business success you want and deserve.

The reason mindset is so vitally important is simple…money is a representation for a value exchange, nothing more. If a product or service “costs” $5,000, the price declares that the product has value in the amount of $5,000. Whether it actually does or not is immaterial, and certainly determined by the end-user. If you do not “see” the value in your own product or service…or, more importantly, in yourself personally, neither will anyone else. One of biggest challenges early on was recognizing that I had value as a person, and that what I had to offer was valuable. It was a process and lesson that cost me a lot of time, honesty and money to learn, but was easily the most influential “strategy” that created the biggest impact on my business.

As I worked through the process of developing my “inner game” as my friend, Pat O’Bryan, refers to it, I had to be brutally honest with myself and face some tough questions, like:

  • What is my purpose in life?
  • Why do I feel worthless?
  • What am I afraid of? Failing? Success?
  • Will I look like a fool?
  • Do I really have anything to offer that people would spend money for?
  • Will my parents approve?
  • What if I fail?
  • Am I even smart enough to do this?
  • What is my reason WHY for wanting my own business?
  • Is it even possible for ME to earn a decent living online, much less a phenomenal one?
  • Where do I begin?
  • Do I deserve to be a success?

Perhaps you have thought many of these same questions! They’re energy and dream stealers and stop most people dead in their tracks. Think of them as a poison that is slowly killing your hopes and dreams. They create a self-talk that’s founded on expectations and beliefs that do not even have substance or proof. One question I asked myself regularly, at times even moment by moment, was, “What evidence do I have that proves that THIS time I will fail?” That THIS time I’ll lose everything!” The truth was (and is) that there is NEVER any evidence. Whether you allow yourself to focus on the past or worry about the future, you MUST realize that neither exists! Only NOW exists and success is simply a choice away.

Einstein said that insanity was doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different result. The questions (and others) above are the perpetuators of the SAME THINGS! You must choose better questions and responses! Here are some examples of the types of questions and responses I used to change my mindset and business:

How can I best serve those around me? Serving others gets our eyes off of ourselves and our circumstances.

I am grateful for _____________________ (fill in the blank) in my life. I struggled a lot with depression and realized that as I remained in a place of gratitude, I wasn’t depressed or fearful. The question I asked myself constantly was, “Why are you focused on what you DON’T have when you can give thanks for what you DO have?”

How can I offer $______ in value to my customers? When you begin to look at your business as offering value versus making money, your mindset shifts.

There is ALWAYS a way…always! This is one of my newer responses…it’s written on my marker board above my desk. I’ve found that it shifts you out of a place of fear and into hopeful anticipation for one reason…there is always a way! You may not know it yet…nevertheless…there is always a way!

In the next post, I will continue with some other transformations I’ve experienced in mindset that will certainly benefit you as well. I will also share books and resources I’ve personally found to be useful and helpful in that transformational process. Until then!

Oh and by the way, I am SO grateful to have you as a reader! Please feel free to add your thoughts and comments below.
Also, if you could do me a favor and please share this with friends, family and subscribers who you feel could benefit from it most. You can do so by re-tweeting, sharing it on Facebook and on Digg! Thanks!

If I Had to Do It All Over Again

I’ve been giving a lot of thought lately about what I would do differently in my business if I had to do it all over. I realized that there are some elements of my business that I would handle exactly the same, but others I would definitely change. So what I thought I would do is over the next several blog posts, I am going to walk through the lessons I’ve learned over the past several years of selling online (my first “sales” site was launched in 2002). I will share my successes and mistakes in every area of the business…from product creation and affiliate selling to JVs and traffic.

My hope (and goal) is to help you avoid the same mistakes I made and benefit from the strategies and methods that worked. I will share what I would do right now if I was starting over. The first post will be ready in the next day or two!

Content Marketing and the Public Domain

Now more than ever before, the key to reaching your audience is to provide them with high-quality, ongoing beneficial content. The day of junk articles and spun content are pretty much over (thank God!). If you think about, it makes sense that your reader would WANT to read something of quality…that’s what YOU want too, right? Of course you do! Nothing you hate worse than to find a website that “hopefully” has the answer you’re looking for, only to find out it’s a spam site designed to get traffic and siphon your money. There will always be those who try to scam the system (not to mention you and I) but you know better…especially when you consider that your content marketing has a great friend in the Public Domain!

When you consider that there are over 85 million books, 200,000+ magazine titles, 5.5 million patents, billions of images and more, content for your site (not to mention your articles, products, autoresponders, etc.) should be a no-brainer! Think about this…we are talking about PROVEN content! It’s already been written by experts and read by thousands if not tens of thousands of readers (just like your target audience). This content was subjected to peer-review, editors and publishers whose desire was to share the best writing on the topic at hand. WHY? Because they knew that if the articles in their magazine sucked, readership would drop and their advertisers would lose money. If the books they published were crap, no one would buy them. Remember, there was no Internet 50+ years ago…LOTS of people read so publishers HAD to produce quality content. Content marketing was just as relevant then as it is today!

Honestly, as a content publisher, you really have NO excuse to struggle with writing blog posts or offering quality content to your readers, prospects and customers! To gain further insight on how to use Public Domain content as a part of your content marketing strategy, be sure to check out these related articles found elsewhere on my blog:

Sell Quality and the Price Won’t Matter

The Previous Post Was a Lesson

Limitless Content

The Gospel According to Magazines

Free Tools for Your Web Presence

Here is the next video in my “Free Tools” series that reveals amazing, free tools that help you establish and enhance your online presence. Social Media is key to establishing your brand, your relationships and your products. The tools that I share here help you take it all to the next level!

In this video, we take a look at:

  • Blog Tools for establishing your online presence
  • Website Tools for creating static websites and minisites
  • Tools that allow us to create group interaction sites
  • Social Networking tools
  • Content Distribution tools
  • And much, much more!

The tools I share in this video are vital to your online success, so prepare to explode your exposure (and success) online!

[FLOWPLAYER SRC=http://stepbystepinfoproducts.com/video_files/Free_Tools2/Free_Tools2.mp4, width=480, height=360]

Developing Your “Inner” Business Webinar Replay

A few days ago, I shared a free webinar on the topic of your “inner” business. The webinar was entitled “Developing Your ‘Inner’ Business” and shared Four Factors necessary for you to succeed in your business…or even with life in general. Well the response to the material was amazing. Here are just a few of the testimonials I received:

Tony, I was very inspired by your Webinar.

I think, far too many times, we are so overwhelmed by attempting to achieve more money, more position, and more work, that we neglect to see what is actually standing in our way, ourselves.

Thank you. I look forward to any more Webinars you have.

Tony,

I really enjoyed your presentation. You covered some important topics in a very succinct manner. I often get so wrapped up in my work I neglect my inner business. Going forward I’ll revisit the points you made on a regular basis to help keep myself balanced.

The story of your customer that reached a point of need great enough to finally begin implementing your techniques, and who is now achieving success, was especially relevant for me. It’s true, when you’ve got nothing you’ve got nothing to lose.

Tony,

I tuned into your webinar today because I’ve bought a few of your products and listened to prior webinars which were very good…they weren’t just a thinly veiled “pitch fest” but gave real and valuable, usable content. Thank you for that!

I was a little surprised that you were talking about practical to spiritual solutions to breaking through blocks to success, instead of your usual webinar about public domain. But, I wasn’t shocked. Spirituality is becoming more and more mainstream… I must admit, I was waiting for the “pitch” for a “Wallace Wattles Course on Success” or some such. Finally, I was VERY pleased to see that you weren’t out for the buck, but to help! And, I also thank you for THAT!

You can watch the replay to Developing Your “Inner” Business below. I’ve also included a download link for both the video and an MP3, in case you want to enjoy it on your iPhone!

[flowplayer src=http://stepbystepinfoproducts.com/video_files/4Factors/4Factors.mp4 width=480 height=360]

Download the MP3 HERE!

Your “Inner” Business FREE Webinar

I’ve been receiving a LOT of e-mails from people who are struggling with making money online…even after years of trying.

Perhaps that describes you.

I’ve found that knowing the right strategies, and even taking action on those strategies, is just ONE PART of the complete picture you need to succeed in business…or even in your life in general.

There is an “inner” business strategy that must also be developed…and actually, THIS is the first step to success! There are actually two parts to this “inner” part of your business…and they’re likely not what you think.

In this FREE webinar, I will share my own challenges, insights and victories on developing my OWN Inner Business. I want to see you finally achieve the success and freedom you deserve and developing your “inner business” is VITAL
to that success! You don’t want to miss this one! Here are the details:

Developing Your “Inner” Business
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
8:00 PM – 9:00 PM EDT

Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/817893522

Space is limited. Oh, and so you know…there is NO charge for this life and business transforming webinar!

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