For some of us the words “online marketer” makes us want to throw up in our mouth a little. Why? Because most people think of online marketers as those people who trick you into giving them your email address so they can spam you with crappy offers for things you don’t want. I’ve certainly run into my share of these. But here’s the reality. Love ‘Em or Hate ‘Em, we all have something to learn from online marketers.
Internet Marketers are Master Email List Builders
Online marketers know most people don’t buy on their first visit to the website. So what do they do? They give you an amazing piece of content you really want in exchange for your email address. In fact, the best internet marketers don’t even try to sell you on their primary website pages. They work really hard to capture your email address because the goal is to build a marketable database that can be leveraged to drive revenue.
This topic is top of mind because I recently had an experience with an internet marketer through my son who wanted to learn how to master talking to girls. I know you’re probably giggling a little, but he’s a little shy and he wanted to build his confidence. I’m all about building my son’s confidence so I agreed. What I didn’t expect was how impressed I would be by the marketing that followed. What I saw quickly became one of my personal favorite examples of solid list building and follow up marketing. To illustrate, I’ll share the site my son found, Double Your Dating, run by David Deangelo aka Eben Pagen. Now, I’m not sure why Eben chose to use an alias for himself on this website, maybe it’s because he didn’t want the girls he was attracting to know he sold tips for others to do the same, maybe it’s because he didn’t want his friends and family to find out, or maybe it’s because he’s a scam artist. I don’t know. But what I do know is Eben is a smart marketer. And business marketers can learn a lot from this approach to selling online.
Take a look at his home page below. What do you see? A HUGE arrow that you can’t ignore pointing to his opt-in box.
What does your opt-in box look like? How noticeable is it? Does it say “sign up for our newsletter” with a form?
Here’s a tip. Signing up for a newsletter is a huge red flag that says, “SIGN UP AND LET ME SPAM YOU WITH STUFF YOU DON’T CARE ABOUT.” People don’t sign up for “newsletters” anymore, especially business newsletters, so you are going to have to get more creative if you want to build your email database.
Internet Marketers Understand the Power of FREE Content
offer the visitor something free in exchange for an email address
Eben uses several interesting content offers in exchange for your email address. My personal favorite is “an easy, effective way to tell if she’s ready to be kissed so you won’t get rejected.” Seriously, you know you want to go and put in your email address just to find out what he recommended. As a woman I can say it was brilliant, by the way! He also offers an exclusive report, scripts and a ton of stuff for someone who really wants to figure out how to attract women. And all of it is free. This page is designed to trigger on the emotional needs for the product the website sells. It doesn’t mention that he’s selling a product; rather it offers the visitor something free in exchange for an email address. And here’s some inside information. The stuff he offers here isn’t good, it’s AMAZING! My son poured over every piece and even brought them to the dinner table to ask me if I thought they were good recommendations. Guess what, they weren’t just good tips, they were brilliant tips that would actually work and help my son build his confidence without risking rejection.
Do you offer content in exchange for an email sign up? If you had to rate your content on a scale from 1 (crap) to 10 (Holy Sh!t That’s Amazing), where would it fall?
Internet Marketers Understand the Power of Trust
The other thing I want to highlight is the video Eben recorded for this page. Clearly, he knew he needed to build trust and credibility with his potential buyers and he knew video was the way to do it. You can see his confident but not cocky demeanor; hear why he created the program and what the result was for him. And honestly, he does it all without ever making it sound like a sales pitch. It’s brilliant. Now, he also understands things like production value and lighting so it looks professional. After all, at the end of all of this, he does have something to sell, if you’re interested. I would embed the video here for you, but the only place you can get it is on his website. But feel free to check it out here.
Would you trust your company after watching the videos on your website? How are you building trust?
Internet Marketers Understand the Power of Passive Income
Internet Marketers do significant testing before they build their products so they don’t waste time
The beauty of the entire Double Your Dating series is that it is a product Eben developed years ago. And it continues to earn money today with little to no effort from Eben. In fact, he’s on to new things and has launched several other products since this one. The goal was to put forth a lot of effort in the beginning to build something great and then to let it continue to sell itself.
Now one of the secrets is that Internet Marketers do significant testing before they build their products so they don’t waste time. They test whether or not the market wants them, how much they will pay for them and even test each product before they sell it. It’s not easy, but as you can see it’s the gift that keeps giving.
Does your business have an offering that generates passive income for the company? Is there a new online product that could be developed to start one? Is there value in making money when you sleep? Heck yeah!
Internet Marketers Understand the Power of Affiliate Marketing
The beauty of products that are complete is that the cost to create them is a sunk cost. The value in selling them through third parties and paying a hefty commission for those sales is extremely high. Most Internet Marketers I’ve seen spend a lot of time recruiting affiliates to help sell their products. They pay them really well to make it worth their time. They provide them with all of the tools they need to sell them. And they rely on affiliates with large email lists, not heavy web traffic. Why? Because email is where the magic happens.
Does your company use affiliates to sell their products? Would an affiliate network attract a valuable market your company wouldn’t otherwise reach? Would affiliates help get a new product to market faster?
Internet Marketers Use Email Marketing to Convert Sales
At the end of the day, it is the automated email campaigns on the back of this that walk the buyer through the emotional triggers, objections and increasing offers that lead to a sale. The email campaigns are smart. They offer you a ton of information. Each email is valuable (if you really are interested in the product they offer) and ultimately you can choose to keep getting the free advice or you can buy the product and take it a level further. Plus, if you don’t buy their product, internet marketers offer you other types of products you could be interested in through companies that they are affiliate marketers for. This is where Internet Marketers get a bad rap.
Here’s the big difference in what they do versus what companies do. They don’t use heavy HTML design and many don’t use any. They use an email that actually contains an “email” that is written like a human on the other end wrote it. It contains links to resources, which I’m sure are all tracked making it technically an “HTML” email, but there aren’t crappy graphics all over the place. It is personable communication that draws you into the story the email is telling.
Other marketers feel this is spamming their audience, tricking them, and that it isn’t an authentic way to market.
But I’ll say this. When my son signed up for the tips from Double Your Dating, I had no doubt we would receive offers to buy the other products. But my son and I enjoyed the free tips so it was worth it. At some point, we were convinced that this was something we wanted and we did buy it. I didn’t feel like I was tricked. I knew what I was getting into, maybe it’s because I’m a marketer. But, hey, anyone who doesn’t like it can unsubscribe and never think about it again.
What do your emails look like? Is HTML causing your audience to categorize your emails as spam? Are you continuing the story in email or are you over-selling, over-offering, over-discounting?
So at the end of the day, like ‘em or hate ‘em, I think we all have a thing or two to learn from internet marketers. And you probably don’t even realize how many you are already following. I know we are evaluating Social Media Explorer to see how we can take some of these lessons to heart.
What do you think? Are Internet Marketers smart or evil? Would any of the lessons help your business? Leave a comment and join the discussion.
Want to see some internet marketers in action? Check out Jeff Walker, Frank Kern, Amy Porterfield, Mari Smith and Social Media Examiner. All of these may sell different things, but they are all smart internet marketers.