Top 5 Ways to Convert Customers with Your Sales Letters

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If you have created an original info product, you have completed about half your task as an Internet marketer. The remaining part of journey toward marketing success is promoting your product so that highly-targeted customers can find it. For that, you are going to need a sales page.

A sales page essentially is an advertisement for the product you have created. But unlike traditional print advertising like a newspaper or magazine ad or a television or radio commercial, your sales page has to not only explain what your product is all about, but also convince the prospective customers reading it that it is essential that they buy your product. As such, sales pages don’t so much suggest as they demand.

If you are just starting out in online marketing, you may not have a big marketing budget. Creating an effective sales letter is the perfect option for a low-cost or no-cost Internet marketing campaign because you can use squeeze pages, Search Engine Optimization and other no-cost techniques to attract traffic to you sales page.

Sales Page Structure

Once your prospective customers arrive on your sales page, it should follow a predictable structure. Remember that your readers arrived at your sales page by following a link on your squeeze page or by clicking on a URL on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) for your product’s niche.

If you present your readers with structure that is unfamiliar they very likely will click off your page immediately. If your sales page looks like a lot of other sales page, don’t worry: Your customers arrived there because they are looking specifically for the kinds of products you are promoting. Now all you have to do is to use the copy on your sales page to convince them to do what they already want to do in the first place.

Writing World-Class Headlines

The headline on our sales page is your first opportunity to draw your readers into your text. It should get right to the point and use direct, active language to engage your readers. Because you have only a moment or two to connect with your readers, you want to use your headline to express a powerful result: What is it that your product is going to do to improve your readers’ lives.

In other words, let your prospective customers know right away why they can’t live without your product. In addition to using action words in your headline, try to include emotionally stirring language so your headline “pops” off the page and immediately connects with your readers.

Creating Scarcity

Beneath your headline, you want to provide details about your product that are going to make it irresistible to your readers. In the first section, you want to set up a common problem that your readers may have. Then introduce your product as the best and possibly only solution for that problem.

Near the end of your sales letter, you want to incentivize your readers to purchase your product. One of the best ways to do this is to create scarcity. Tell your readers there is only a limited number of your product available, if it is going to be unavailable in the very near future, or come up with another way to motivate your readers to act immediately otherwise they may risk not having access to your product again.

Bonuses, Upsells and Back-End

You can add value to your product by including one to three free bonuses that your customers will receive when they purchase your product. Typically, you want to mention what each bonus is worth so that later you can show how much buyers are getting for their money.

Upsells and back-end offers are secondary offers that are made after your customer already has decided to purchase your product. Usually, after they submit their payment information, they are taken to another screen where you can offer them more – usually higher priced – products that are related to your original product.

The Guarantee

You almost always want to offer an unconditional 30- or 60-day guarantee. This removes any risk for the customer.

It’s also a good policy for the seller of the info product to back up their sales pitch with an iron-clad guarantee. Your goal is not to sell your clients a single info product, but to develop them into loyal, long-term customers who will buy a series of products or services from you over time.

If they aren’t satisfied with the quality of the original product, giving them their money back with no questions asked is a great way to restore confidence and keep them loyal to your business.

 

 

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Use Forums and Social Media Marketing to Drive Traffic to Your Web Pages

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Forums are a great place to post articles that include links to your web pages. Forums are places where people interested in a particular topic can go to read posts by other people interested in the same niche.

ll of the big internet sites – such as Google, Yahoo and Bing – offer forums on every topic imaginable. Even social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn host forums where you can post your articles. Your articles can even be broken up into smaller pieces and posted as comments to other people’s forum postings.

Any Topic, Anywhere

Forums on just about any topic can be found on any of the big internet services – such as Bing, Yahoo and Google – or look for forums on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

The more forums you post on, the more opportunities you have to attract customers to your squeeze page. Plus your posts will remain available to the search engines for a long time.

Better than Backlinks

Backlinks were the primary way Google and search engines determined a sites ranking up until a couple of years ago. But Google changed its search engine algorithm in 2011 and again in 2012 to put less emphasis on backlinks and more emphasis on social approval signals.

These are things like Facebook “Likes”, Google+ +1’s, and the number of times your link has been Tweeted on Twitter.

What happened was that a lot of people in Internet marketing figured out that having a lot of backlinks would get your pages ranked high. So they started to create hundreds of artificial backlinks just to fool Google into thinking that their site was more important than it actually was.

Panda and Penguin

And it worked … for a while. Eventually, Google figured out what was happening and that’s when it rolled out its Panda and Penguin upgrades to its search engine algorithm.

These two upgrades now give more weight to social approval, and it makes sense because social media is the way people today let other people know about the things they like the most.

So if your website gets a lot of social approval, it’s going to be ranked high on Google.

Attracting Social Approval Signals

The key to getting a lot of social approval is to be active on social media. Although it’s free, it tends to take a lot of time and effort … which, of course, is one of the hallmarks of a free traffic method. You also have to make it easy for people to give you social approval — so you want to include widgets on your web pages that let them give you Facebook “Likes” and Google+ +1’s right there from your page.

Another benefit of social media marketing is that it’s easy to categorize users according to preferences.

So in addition to using it to get social approval to improve your page rankings and boost your traffic, you also target your affiliate products to a highly specialized group of consumers: Those who are looking to buy exactly the products they are promoting.

Building Relationships

Social media sites are more informal than sales pages or retail sites, so your marketing plan needs to take a non-traditional approach. You can’t just send ads for your affiliate products to your Facebook friends or Twitter followers because they will think you are spamming them and will block you. Instead, to be successful you have to take the time to develop personal relationships with your customers.

Once you have gained their trust, you can promote your products in the form of product reviews,recommendations and offhand remarks, rather than blatant promotion.

When launching a social media marketing campaign, you want to identify people who are interested in the types of products you are promoting.

For example, search for Facebook, LinkedIn and Skype groups that are related to your niche, join them and interact with other members. Use Twitter tags … which are hash marks followed by keywords, such as #Forex … to find tweets about your niche. Then follow the people who are sending them. On Twitter, if you follow somebody, they usually will follow you back.

 

 

5 Ways to Build Personal Relationships with Your Customers

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Once you have identified groups of prospective customers, if you want them to give your links social approval signals, you have to take the time to build relationships with them.

One great way to do this is providing free valuable content related to your niche. So sending them links to websites related to your niche that you find helpful or other information they can use in their everyday lives.

Make It Personal

You also should share personal information about your life. Remember, you want them to think of you as a friend, not just an Internet marketer. So you can do things like posting photos, videos and other links related to your private life so that people can feel as if they know you better

You also want to make positive and supportive comments about their updates and tweets and repost them. Every time you re-Tweet something or share their update, they are going to get a notification.

It’s also a good idea to show an interest in the details of their lives and refer frequently to personal information they have shared in the past, like asking about their kids or how their vacations were.

The 3:1 Rule

Once you have built friendly relationships with your social media contacts, you can go ahead and follow the 3:1 Rule: For every post you make that promotes a product or service, post at least three others that are completely unrelated to any commercial objective.

You want to make sure you always provide valuable content, keep it upbeat and family-friendly, and whenever possible try to engage your prospective customers on an interpersonal level. Don’t forget to use their names, refer to personal information they have shared in the past, and make every effort to engage them as a friend, not somebody trying to sell them something.

Forward links to articles that you found interesting and that are related to your niche, or even those that aren’t. Retweet interesting tweets, not just those that have commercial motivations. Use your postings to encourage conversations and engage other users in discussions.

Happy Birthday!

Birthdays are an excellent excuse to send personalized messages that will enhance your bond with your individual social media contacts. Nearly every social media site has free apps to remind you of your contact’s birthdays.

That way, when you do promote a product, frame it so that you are a friend recommending a particularly good product to another friend.

Video Marketing

Another terrifically powerful free marketing method is video marketing. Because of rapid advances in technology and the falling price of playback-enabled devices have combined to create near-universal access to streaming media, video marketing can now be targeted at everybody.

You can drive a lot of traffic to your pages with an effective video marketing campaign. And the best part about it is that it doesn’t require a lot of expensive equipment or technical expertise.

Stepping out of the internet and into the real world for a moment, nearly every modern smart phone, digital camera, even desktop PCs come with cameras built into them nowadays. Most shoot high definition video as well, making it a simple task to create an engaging, high-quality video you can use to promote your products.

Post Different Types of Videos

There are a number of different kinds of videos. Take a few minutes to research videos about products like the ones you are promoting and see what your competitors are doing. This helps you create something unique and also learn from their mistakes.

One common type of video is just to record someone talking about your product. It could be you, a friend or just about anybody.

The second kind of video is a series of static screen shots, such as a PowerPoint presentation. They can actually be created with PowerPoint, if you already have the program, or you can download a program that will allow you to build one. These kinds of videos are going to be more like commercials than testimonials or sales pitches.

Don’t Forget the Backlink

Finally, the most important thing: The whole point of creating videos and posting them on popular video sharing sites is to create additional backlinks and lead traffic to your website, so don’t forget to post a link to your site underneath your video. You would be surprised how many people forget this step!

 

How to Avoid the 3 Biggest Mistakes Most Email Marketers Make

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If you send emails to people who haven’t invited you to do so, you could be breaking the law. There’s a law called the CAN-SPAM Act – which stands for Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act of 2003 — that regulates commercial emails.

This law gives people the right to unsubscribe to any emails they don’t want. So if somebody asks you to take them off your list, you not only want to do that because it’s good business, but because you may be subject to fines if you don’t do it. And the fines are per email violation, so they can add up fast.

To and From

This law also explains the requirements for what you can put in the subject line of your email, the “to” line and the “from” line, and other elements of email.

So if you buy leads from another marketer, it may seem like a quick way to build your list, but in reality it can be expensive, leads to lower conversion rates, can be harmful to your reputation. It can even subject you to being banned or paying fines.

Integrating with Your Autoresponder

On many of the autoresponder programs, when you try to plug in the leads that you have purchased, you are going to discover that you can’t easily plug them in. So you may have to enter them manually, which is time-consuming and — given the low conversion rate — probably not worth the effort.

There are some email companies, however, that do let you import leads that you have purchased. These include MailChimp and Imnicamail. Both require you to have the relevant opt-in data, however. When you import leads using these services and others like them, you have to make sure that the people have given the person you bought the leads permission to sell or give them to third parties.

In other words, you have to be able to prove that the leads have opted in to receive third party information. So that means in addition to the email address you also need to have the opt-in date, the website it was opted-in from, and so on.

Choosing a Reliable Vendor

Companies that sell leads legitimately are going to be able to provide you with all this information. Those that are less reliable are not. So if the leads you buy are accompanied by this critical information, that’s one indicator that you are getting high-value, legitimate sales leads for your money.

It’s important to ask for that information as well as the email addresses. If the person selling you leads doesn’t know what you are talking about, you probably shouldn’t buy leads from them.

When you buy email lists, many of the less reputable sellers are getting the addresses they sell you buy scraping them off old lists, picking them off web sites, and collecting contact lists from conferences. And some list sellers create their own squeeze pages and collect opt-ins, then turn around and sell them to other marketers.

The problem is that the people who opted-in did so for that company, not for yours. So when you contact them, they don’t know who you are and are more likely to mark you as a spammer.

Are They Organized?

Another problem is the way these lists are put together — hodge-podge, if you will — many of the addresses you receive are going to be misspelled, abandoned or even phony. This is actually really common, so the legitimate companies that sell lists will usually give you a refund for these types of addresses up front. That’s another indicator that you are buying from somebody legit.

So when your autoresponder sends out your emails to these addresses, they are going to be kicked back. This is also a red flag to email providers like Gmail and Hotmail and it could cause them to block all future emails from you. So you may have to start all over again.

 

Should You Pay for Leads to Expand Your Customer List?

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The common thinking among many Internet marketers is that you are never supposed to buy email lists because the people on that list don’t know you. After all, you don’t know for sure they are open to what you are selling. They may mark you as spam and get you banned from email services.

All those things are true, in general, but there are certain lists that absolutely are worthwhile to buy. So you shouldn’t dismiss buying leads altogether because there is a right way and wrong way to go about it. You just have to be very careful about how you proceed because there are risks.

Most Lists Contain High-Target Customers

You should only buy leads if there is a high probability that they are going to convert. What you don’t want is a list of people that you essentially are going to be cold-calling — via email — because that’s going to be low-converting.

Obviously, the best leads — and the optimal way to reach people — focus primarily on customers who have interacted with you at some point or another, either through your squeeze page or your sales page or your YouTube videos or on social media or what have you.

Those people have already opted-in, so they have in effect given you an implicit permission to contact them. As a result, they are going to be far more likely to open you email and, more importantly, to act on your call to action.

This is a very important point because if people haven’t opted-in to receive your emails, it can be very dangerous for you.

How Much Should You Pay?

Now, you see a lot of companies out there that will sell you thousands of email addresses for $99 and the like. You may be wondering if these are a good option.

It’s a good idea to proceed with caution. If you have done business with the company in the past or the company has been recommended to you by somebody that you trust, then it may be a good idea to consider buying a list from them and trying them out.

Beware of making large scale purchases from companies that you aren’t familiar with because there are a lot of scammers out there on the Web who would be happy to take your money and sell you a list that is filled with either dead addresses or emails they have scraped from other places that aren’t going to do you a lot of good.

Risk vs Reward

Buying lists can be a big expense, so what you have to consider is the value that you are getting for your money. It can be a financial burden and there also are other risks involved.

For example, you can seriously harm your reputation if you buy the wrong list because when you buy a list and contact people who never heard of you before, they can send it to their spam folder.

Whenever they do this, it sends a notification to the email service. If it happens often enough, it can lower your sender score, which can affect your domain’s ability to send emails through that email service in the future — even if they are legitimate emails to people who have asked you to contact them.

Also, if you are marked as spam often enough, every time you send out an email from your website, it may be automatically diverted to the recipient’s spam folder, so they are never going to see it. And that’s a total waste of time and money.

Don’t Get Banned

If enough people mark your unsolicited emails as spam, you will eventually get banned on some of the biggest email providers, such as Yahoo and Gmail.

If that happens, you are going to have to shut down your website and start over with a new one.

That’s not going to put you out of business, but it will delay your efforts to get your business up and running. Plus there will be the additional expense of buying new domains, setting up new pages, re-establishing your autoresponder, not to mention the opportunity costs associated with being offline.

 

7 Fast and Easy Ways to Build Customer Loyalty

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The fastest and most effective way to engage your readers into your content is to draw them into a story. People are naturally pre-disposed to enjoy stories, so if you can wrap your sales copy in an engaging story that connects emotionally with your reader, you have a better chance of getting them to make a buy decision.

Injecting Your Personality

The story you create to sell your product can be either your own first person account of how your product changed your life, or it can be the story of somebody else, such as a character you create.

In either case, the purpose of the story is to get the reader to connect with the subject of the story. The problems you or your character experience should be the same problems your readers are having.

Keep Them Coming Back for More

Obviously, your story needs to have a happy ending. In this case, it will be the way your product solved the problem and improved the subject’s life forever. When your prospective customer relates with the story’s subject, they project the solution your product is creating onto their own problems, making them more open to the idea of purchasing your product.

Whether you use a character-driven or first-person narrative, make sure you inject your personality into the story. Try to use familiar language that makes it easier for the reader to make a connection with the story you are telling them. This will put them at ease and help them see more clearly the benefits of your product in their lives.

Creating Trust in the Product’s Power

While you or your character may be the subject of the story you create, the true hero needs to be your product. For example, if your original product is an eBook on how to cure acne, your story will describe the horrible problems that acne created in your life or that of your character.

But the hero of the story will be the product that you discovered that cured your acne forever and caused radical improvements to your life: You gained more confidence, you were more popular than ever, your sex appeal increased and you finally found true happiness, for example.

Social Proof: Testimonials and Where to Get Them

ales letters frequently use social proof to reinforce the positive message about the product they are promoting. Sometimes referred to as the “bandwagon approach”, social proof feeds into the natural human psychological desire to be part of a larger group.

Your customers are going to be more open to buying your product if the think that others already use and endorse your product. According to Google, 70% of Americans now say they look at product reviews before making a purchase. Adding testimonials to your sales page is often enough to tip your readers into making a buying decision.

Recruiting People Already Loyal to You

If this is your first original product or you haven’t written sales pages before, you might think that obtaining testimonials is a daunting task, but it actually is quite easy.

While you don’t want to make up testimonials – that would be dishonest and also a violation of Federal Trade Commission regulations – there is nothing preventing you from asking family members or friends to write testimonials for you. You are not required legally to disclose your relationship with the person who gives you a product testimonial.

Getting Existing Customers On Boards

Another option is to send emails to people who already have purchased your product and ask if they would be willing to write a brief testimonial. In most cases, if you ask for somebody’s help, they will happily give it to you. Especially if, as in this case, they are already satisfied with the quality of your product.

Give Something for Nothing

Another option is to offer your product for free to people who are considered to be authoritative in your niche. For example, if the original product you created is a video series on how to improve your golf swing, you could reach out to club pros in your city and offer to send them your product for free with the request that if they found it helpful to send you a brief testimonial that you could include with future marketing collateral.

 

5 Free Traffic Techniques that Really Work

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For most online marketers, getting started with free traffic is done out of necessity. Unless you starting your internet marketing business with a large initial budget or with a lot of investors, odds are your marketing budget is either zero or next to nothing.

Fortunately, there are many low-cost and no-cost marketing techniques you can use to drive traffic to your web pages. While they may not be as fast or efficient as paid traffic techniques, they will get you to the same place: A high-converting sales page promoting great products with high traffic that results in strong and sustained revenues.

For marketers without a start-up budget, these revenues can be re-invested into the business – such as for paid traffic generation and marketing methods – so that the business can continue to grow and the revenues can become exponentially larger.

Free Marketing

Eventually your affiliate marketing business will need both paid and free traffic methods. But when you have no money to start with, you must focus your initial efforts on free marketing.

The first free traffic method to consider is backlinks. These are links that lead back to your web page or blog from or wherever you are promoting your affiliate product from other web pages.

Up until a couple of years ago, the number one way Google decided which web pages should be ranked first on its Search Engine Results Pages — or SERPs — was the number of backlinks the page had.

The thinking was that if a lot of other websites linked back to your website, then yours must be an important and influential website that Google’s users would find relevant to their search.

Links from Authoritative Sites

Google still takes backlinks into consideration when ranking pages — especially pages with a lot of backlinks from authoritative sites. These are sites people go to when they are looking for answers to questions … so they include sites like Wikipedia, About.com and eHow.com.

Websites with addresses that end in the suffix .edu and .gov are also generally considered to be authoritative sites by Google. So backlinks from education and government sites to your pages will help your rankings a lot.

Landing on Top

Now, why is it important for your web page, blog or wherever you are promoting your affiliate products to appear in the top spot on Google, or at least on the front page? It’s because the link in the top spot on Google for any given keyword or set of keywords usually will get about 70% of the click-throughs from the people who land on that page.

That means that 7 out of 10 people who search for those keywords are clicking on your link. That’s a monstrous market share.

And only about 11% of all users ever make it past the first SERP for any given search. So if your link ends up on page 2 or page 202, you are pretty much out of the running in terms of getting people to click through to your page.

Article Syndicators

One of the best things you can do is to create a lot of backlinks from other web pages — and especially from authoritative pages. One great way to do this is by posting articles that you have written on other people’s web pages or on article syndicators, which are sites that collect thousands of different articles from all over the web and index them in one place so that they are more easily found by interested searchers.

Whenever you post an article anywhere, always make sure it includes several links back to your page so that it is easy for people who read your article to follow the links back to your web page.

Participate in Forums

So how can you get backlinks from authority sites? If you post your articles as replies to forums on educational or governmental websites, it will instantly increase its esteem in the eyes of the search engines.

They also like established sites that most people would consider to be expert, such as Ask.com, eHow.com, About.com, or any other site you would likely go if you had a question about your niche.

When you syndicate your content on established authoritative sites, you can generate traffic to your website instantly. Plus, you also can build a reputation as an authority in your market, which is a great way to get repeat customers.