Product Creation Tips – One Product Or Many?

A question that many product creators ask is this. “Should I create one product or many products?” That’s actually a very good question, and there are pros and cons to both models. But more importantly than the pros and cons there is the need. Do you really NEED to create more than one product? After all, if you could make a million dollars a year off of just one product, why bother creating others? Well, let’s take a look at this issue and see what we come up with.

Let me start off by saying that I create many products. The reason, however, is not the same reason that most people create many products. See, many product creators create more than one product because the life span of each product they create is limited, meaning that it will sell for a certain length of time and then, after a while, will either stop selling or sell so little that they have to come up with something else. I, on the other hand, create many products because I provide info for a number of different niches and/or sub niches. It’s called going wide rather than going deep, which I do as well. I guess you can say I am quite diversified.

So the question is, what do YOU want to do? More importantly, what do you NEED to do to continue to earn a consistent income? Well, if you’re somebody like the guy who created the product “Magic Of Making Up”, which happens to be in the relationships niche, you probably don’t have to create anything else to keep making a steady income. That product is near the top of the Clickbank marketplace, has tons of affiliates promoting it, and I am sure is making the author a very nice living. More importantly, relationship products are evergreen. People are ALWAYS going to need help with relationships. So the product should always sell. If you have something like THAT…then you really don’t need to create anything else, not that you can’t.

But if you have the latest “make money online” eBook based on some new tactic using some obscure social networking site, then odds are that one day that method will become saturated or just not bright and shiny new anymore and sales for the product will slow to a trickle. In the case of products like that, you will probably have to come up with something new if you’re going to stay in that niche. Products like that are NOT evergreen. They’re good for a short run, will usually make you good money during that time, but eventually, they die out.

Look at a company like Aweber. They’re an autoresponder service. Do you really think that the owner has to create anything else other than that service? I can only imagine how many customers he has. That’s a perfect example of an evergreen product. People will ALWAYS need an autoresponder service if they’re going to build a mailing list.

So you need to look at what it is you’re doing and realistically determine if the product you’re going to create or have created is one that can sell for a life time or at least close to it. If not, then you might want to consider creating other products now or down the road.

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Product Creation Tips – Delayed Delivery Products

A lot of people are under the impression that if you create a product, it has to be completely finished before you can release it to the public. While this is the norm, it doesn’t have to always apply. In this article, I’m going to give you an example of a product that can actually be finished long after the initial sale, using one of my own products as an example. I think you will get a lot out of this article.

Just recently, I released my first big product in about three years. The main part of the product, which customers got upon delivery, was a six volume PDF set. However, there was more to the product than just the PDFs. There are a series of videos that are going to be released over the course of the next six months. This was actually the main selling point of the product as many of the videos will be custom made to the customers’ requests.

Okay, there are pros and cons to this kind of product creation model and I will go over them both here. You need to be aware of these before you jump into this kind of product creation model. Yes, there is a downside that many people don’t think about. They only concentrate on the positives. This can be a recipe for disaster.

The pros are obvious as the day is long. By releasing a product where you have weeks or even months to complete it before final delivery, or in the case of my product, staggered delivery, you can take your time with the product. You don’t have to kill yourself to get it done. This actually makes it so that you can concentrate on making the best product possible because of the fact that you don’t have to rush through it.

However, there is a major downside to this…something most people don’t want to think about. What if something, God forbid, happens to you and you can’t complete the product? Your customers have already paid for it and are going to be more than just a little upset that they’re not going to get complete delivery, if they got any delivery at all depending upon how much of the product you initially got done. In the back of my mind, I know I have to keep myself alive and well for at least the next six months. Now, while I’m no old man at 53, let’s face it…stuff happens. I could get hit by a truck tomorrow.

So before you consider creating a delayed product release, please keep this in mind that the people who paid for it are going to expect full delivery at some point in time.

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Affiliate Marketing Tips – Why Doesn’t ClickBank Notify Me Of Sales?

If you’re an affiliate marketer, you’re probably wondering why ClickBank doesn’t notify you when you get a sale, similar to what PayDotCom does. Well, there is a very long story behind this. If you’re an old timer, you probably remember the days when you got notifications as an affiliate. For you new people, this article explains what happened and why you will probably never see an affiliate sale notification from ClickBank again.

When I first started promoting ClickBank products, back in 2003, I was getting these affiliate sale notifications by the truck load. It was a great feeling. But then I started wondering about those super affiliates who were probably getting ten times as many notifications as I was. Their email boxes must have been stuffed to the brim. And then that got me thinking some more. What about those new affiliates who didn’t know that these were coming and just happened to get their email boxes stuffed with similar notifications that were actually spam. You know which emails I’m talking about. It’s very hard to tell the difference between the two.

Well, you guessed it. A lot of these affiliates, thinking the email from ClickBank was just more spam (thank you spammers for screwing up our lives), reported these emails to their ISP. Apparently, enough of these emails were reported that ClickBank actually had some problems with THEIR ISP. As a result, they had no choice but to discontinue sending affiliate sale emails as they couldn’t risk having their hosting pulled out from under them. That would have been a major catastrophe. Anyway, that’s the story. That’s why you don’t get affiliate sale notifications from ClickBank.

Okay, so what can you do about it? Well, what you can do is put a tracker on your affiliate links. No, it won’t tell you if somebody actually clicks through to the payment page, as that goes through the vendor pay link, but it will tell you how many people have been to your affiliate link. If there are no clicks for a given day, you know that there is little possibility of a sale. Yes, there are exceptions that I won’t get into here. However, if you get many clicks, a simple check of your ClickBank account at the end of each day will let you know how many sales you’ve gotten.

No, it’s not perfect and it does require you to do a little bit of work, but it’s the best we have given what we have to work with. Like I said, you can thank the spammers for these headaches. I’m curious as to how PayDotCom hasn’t been hit with the same problem as I still get sales emails as an affiliate from them whenever I make a sale.

Maybe that’s a question I should ask Mike Filsaime one day.

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Affiliate Marketing Tips – Why Don’t My Products Convert?

This article addresses one of the biggest frustrations that affiliate marketers have. They find a product that supposedly has a high conversion rate and yet, when they promote it, it doesn’t convert for THEM. Why not? What are they doing wrong? Are they doing anything wrong? Well, I’m going to let you in on a few secrets that I am sure are going to surprise you. After you read this, you shouldn’t have any questions as to why the product you’re promoting isn’t converting.

At the top of the list is the lie. Yes, the lie. See, numbers don’t tell the whole story. Many people will pick a product purely on how popular it is with other affiliates. In the case of ClickBank products, that would be indicated by the gravity score. Well, I have a news flash for you in regard to ClickBank gravity scores. They can be SERIOUSLY manipulated. In other words, a product that LOOKS like it converts well may not convert very well at all. See, gravity only shows how many affiliates made at least one sale in a given period of time. It DOESN’T show how many hops they had to get in order to make that one sale. So the figure, even if accurate, can be very misleading.

But aside from gravity, there is another problem. Let’s assume the gravity is accurate and that the product truly does convert well. Why isn’t it converting for you? Well, there are several possible reasons. I won’t go over all of them but I will tackle the two main ones. First, there is the quality of your traffic. Where are you showing the offer? I can tell you from experience that there are certain methods of promotion that will bring you tons of eyeballs to your offer but almost no sales. And then there are other methods that, while they don’t bring nearly as many views to your offer, convert much better. So you have to look at the quality of your traffic.

Assuming the traffic is good and targeted well to your offer, there is still one more problem. See, affiliate marketers are at a bit of a disadvantage. The offer they’re showing to their prospects is the same offer that every other affiliate is showing. There is no difference. So buying from you specifically becomes a crap shoot. Let’s face it…what are you providing to the prospect that every other affiliate ISN’T providing? If you can’t come up with something for an answer then you are seriously hurting your chances to convert.

Ultimately, you need to learn some affiliate marketing advantages that will give you the edge over the competition and turn those great converting products into great converting products for YOU. In my signature, you can get some more info on this subject.

If your product isn’t converting, yes, it may be the product’s numbers are a lie or at least a misrepresentation of reality. But it also may be simply that you don’t have an edge over other affiliates.

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Internet Marketing Tips – Viral Marketing 101

Viral marketing is one of the most effective forms of advertising anywhere. If you don’t know what it is or how to do it, this article will show you how and give you probably the greatest example of viral marketing in the history of this planet.

I can’t believe it when people ask me if viral marketing really works. Do you know what the most successful form of viral marketing in the history or mankind was? Well, I’ll tell you later. For now I’ll just let you think about that for a while and come up with an answer.But the purpose of this article is to give you some solid techniques for viral marketing that work like gangbusters.

The first thing you want to do, whatever niche you’re in, is get your rear end over to a forum for that niche. Start talking about things. Talk about what you do. Help other marketers or other members. Become a presence. Eventually, people are going to start talking about you. When that happens, they’ll start checking out your web site. Most forums do allow web site links in your signature. Make sure that yours is filled in.

The next thing you want to do is put together a brief ebook or report on your topic of interest and just give it away. That’s right, give it away. Go to one of those sites where you can download free ebooks. There are tons of them on the Internet. Just go to Google and do a search for “Free eBook Downloads” and you’ll find them. Upload your ebook or report there. Make sure you have income generating links in the book. Over time, as the downloads of your book increase, you will begin to see some sales, just because you uploaded a book to this site. Upload it to multiple sites and you’ll make more sales.

Okay, I’m now going to tell you what the most successful form of viral marketing was of all time. A few guys got together and decided that they were going to spread the word of this great thing. They were real ambitious. They were determined to spread it everywhere, all over the world. And they were going to do this one person at a time. That’s right. They’d tell one person and that person would hopefully tell somebody else. This all started with about 11 guys. By the time you’ve read this article, the word on this great thing had spread to billions of people. In case you’re wondering, I’m talking about Christianity. But you knew that all along from the very beginning, didn’t you.

Viral marketing…It works.

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Developing an E-Mail Newsletter

The creation of a newsletter is a serious decision because initiating one without the infrastructure and commitment to sustain it can wind up doing more harm than good. Your e-mail newsletter, once launched, will create an expectation among recipients and if you fail to deliver on that expectation it could lead to a backlash as your customers cll your reliability or commitment into question. The infrastructure you need includes content sources, graphic sources, and the e-mail capacity to send the newsletter. The commitment is eased when you create a timetable that details when the content needs to be concluded, when the graphics need to be completed, and when the newsletter needs to be edited and then ultimately sent.

In choosing your send date, you need to think about the other newsletters your readers are likely to receive and make sure that you do not become just one more newsletter in their inboxes. We recommend you send it during a time of the month when there is traditionally less traffic. For example, Tudog sends its e-mail newsletter at the end of each month because most of our competing newsletters are sent either at the beginning or middle of the month. We have found that this increases our readership by approximately 20%.

The construction of a successful newsletter has 6 phases. They are:

1. Content
The newsletter you send stands or falls on the relevance and quality of the content you incorporate. If your website is meant to entertain you content needs to be entertaining. If it is meant to educate, your content better be educational. Tudog does not believe in using the newsletter for self-promotional purposes, as we think that readers rapidly grow tired of reading commercials and self-serving material. There are other forums to engage in self-promotion. Your newsletter is a service to your customers and needs to be written from the perspective of what they need, and not from the view of how it can serve you. By having your newsletter serve your customers, it will ultimately serve you too.

2. Frequency
You need to decide how often you are going to issue your newsletter. There are two primary considerations that need to make up the decision. The first is how often your customer base would engage you newsletter. If your sector is flooded with newsletters, you may conclude that there is an excess of reading material and that a quarterly newsletter is appropriate. Conversely, you may notice that there is both an absence of other newsletters and a hunger for information, leading you to conclude that a bi-weekly newsletter would provide you with an excellent opportunity. The second consideration is your internal capacity. You do not want to create an expectation for a newsletter that exceeds your production capacity. How many newsletters you are able to release each month needs to be the underlying driver to the decision how often your newsletter is released.

3. Design
How your newsletter looks is crucial not only because it represents your company, but also because it could determine how people receive the newsletter and whether or not they are drawn to read it. A well designed newsletter includes a clear delineation of all areas of content, integrated, relevant images, and an identity that is consistent with your company’s identity. It is important that you view your newsletter as an extension of your company and that its personality is representative of the image you transmit to your sector.

4. Database
Your database is the list of people to whom you send your newsletter. Your list should be extracted from your client/customer base, prospective clients/customers, and your sector influencers. You should make sure that everyone receiving your e-mail newsletter either requested it or has a way to be removed from your list (clearly and easily marked in your e-mail). Your newsletter can be sent via snail mail, but the costs of printing and postage make e-mail a much more realistic and cost effective often. Using e-mail, you are able to send your newsletter as HTML, text, or in PDF format. You should pick your format based on customer preferences. Tudog uses PDF after our inquiries indicated that our clients were most interested in receiving our newsletter in that format. You clients/customers may prefer a different format, but it should be noted that the content, design, and frequency are not influenced by format.

5. Marketing
Your newsletter needs marketing support so that it can reach out to a wider audience and better serve your company as a marketing tool. The support it receives can be as simple as being listed on your website (with a sign-up option) to advertising and special attention. Tudog markets its website by permitted reprints of our articles in magazines and other newsletters, drawing attention to the company, our expertise, and that our newsletter offers continuing exposure to the ideas and hints we publish.

6. Testing
We recommend that you test your newsletter before you send it out to your widest audience so that you can benefit from the feedback of your test group and ultimately send out the best newsletter possible. You should pick a random group of people (between 50-200) to send your newsletter to, alongside a brief questionnaire asking for reviews on your look and content. Once you have their responses and incorporate some of their comments, you will know your newer version is close to the needs and wants of your target market.

Your e-mail newsletter is an excellent way to reach out to and become meaningful to your clients/customers. Embark on an e-mail newsletter only if you have the resources and commitment to sustain it. Done properly, it is a powerful and continuing tool for exposure and reinforcement of your expertise.

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