RePower America Uses Savvy Social Media Strategy

This week I received an email with the subject line “Call now for clean energy.”

It was intriguing enough to open, and the inside of the message was just as nicely written.

Al Gore and his team at RePower America have put together a savvy system for making it incredibly easy for me to contact my senator about the clean energy legislation under consideration this week. The email included a toll-free hotline to call which would then automatically connect me with my senator’s office. (No wasted time trying to figure out what senator to call or what the phone number is.)

They even told me what I could say to the senator’s office.

Then they asked me to “report my call by clicking here.” RePower America needs to know how many people are calling in, so they collected my email and zip code.

The next screen gave me buttons to quickly and easily share the hotline with my friends, by email, Facebook and Twitter.

I was impressed with this strategy for a couple reasons:

1. RePower made it incredibly easy for me to make an impulse call to their hotline and reach my senator’s office.
2. They are tracking their results so they can report on the ROI of the activity.
3. RePower included social media options with the buttons at the end of the process (once again, making it easy for me and removing any time-consuming barriers that would give me the opportunity to click away).

(Want to know more? Here’s the link to the website.)

So where in your business can you use these three strategies? Are you making it easy for your customers?

Re-watch the Super Bowl Commercials Here!

Wanna re-see your favorite Super Bowl commercial? Once the game is over, view the 2010 commercials here:


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Check this out: 3:24 minutes left in the game and one count was 566,000+ Super Bowl tweets!

Old Advertising Models Don’t Work in Social Media

I hate to break the bad news… but the old advertising marketing models just don’t work anymore.

So much so that they can actually HURT your business.

Let me give you a case study from my personal experience:

I like to share cartoons with my friends and followers, and this weekend Parade magazine had some really funny ones about computers and Twitter. So I decided to go to Parade.com to see if I could find them so I could link to them.

Website Mistake #1 – Expanding animated ad covered up the Search Box

So I’m blasted with ads as soon as I arrive at the site.

As I try to get my cursor into the search box to search for my cartoons, I accidentally mouse-over an ad that expands ON TOP of the search box…. so I click the X to close the ad… no luck. I still can’t get to the search box.

Website Mistake #2 – Popup Ad

So I decide to look around and wait for the darn animated ad to finish. What’s next? Another pop-up ad in my face. At this point, I can hardly see the site and am frustrated beyond belief.

I am seriously considering never returning to Parade.com again.

—————

So what’s happened here? Let me give you a little background. The Parade magazine that is included in the newspaper each week is heavily funded by very expensive advertising. The company has obviously tried to take that business model of selling expensive advertising and apply it to their website.

Website Mistake #3 – Using the Old Advertising Model in a New Medium.

I’m sure the marketing department has been heavily selling advertising on the website. But it’s not working. I’m not a happy consumer who want to go shop at ____ Bank with the animated advertising getting in my way.

I’m a frustrated consumer who still can’t link to the funny cartoon (and send people to their site).

And Parade.com is going to have to do some heavy-duty work to get me back to their site ever again.

I feel sorry for these companies who just don’t get it — they have been entrenched in the old-style, how-much-can-I-interrupt and how-loud-can-I-be marketing for so long and their business may disappear if they don’t wake up and switch their model to something that people WANT, providing answers and helping me, instead of just interrupting me all the time.

P.S. Don’t let me get started ranting about the volume of commercials on TV!

Takeaway for your business: Are you using Interruption Marketing right now? What can you replace it with? How can you provide solutions and answers instead?

What is the ROI of Social Media?

Check out the unbelievable statistics about the ROI of Social Media –

Are you using Social Media yet? Are you using it well?

Join us on February 10th for a complete course on the power of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogging and video!

Since you are a dedicated reader of this blog, save $35 with coupon code ROI in the shopping cart. Valid only for the next 5 people who signup!

Best Facebook and Twitter Questions

Over the last few weeks I’ve been meeting some amazing people as I discuss social media, blogging and website marketing. They have shared some fantastic questions so I thought I would pass them along to you:

How can I schedule my posts to Facebook and my tweets on Twitter?

My two favorite tools for this are Su.pr and Hootsuite.

Su.pr lets you track the clicks through your links and schedule the time to post on both Facebook and Twitter. It also helps you determine which time of day is the best for you to post. If you are using the Firefox browser, you can add a button to your tool bar so it’s easy to post. This is one of my favorite social media tools.

Hootsuite is an online dashboard for managing your Twitter account. It lets you schedule outgoing tweets, and group the tweets you receive into different categories so they are easier to view (and lots more, too. I just wanted to share the details about scheduling your tweets).

Ali Brown converted her friends to fans on Facebook. How did she do this?

After lots of searching, I found a post that said she contacted Facebook directly about doing this. It’s not a regular feature, unfortunately!

What tool can I use to update all my social networks?

Ping.fm is another fantastic tool for posting your status across different social networks at the same time. You set up an account at Ping.fm, add in your information from your different accounts, and then select where you want to post.

With all these different sites, should I post the same thing on all of them?

Yes and no. You can generally do your status updates across the sites, but some items may be a better fit for certain sites than others. For example, I post a lot of tips about Twitter and those generally don’t also go to Facebook. Su.pr lets you decide whether your post goes to both Facebook and Twitter.

I hope these quick tips will save you some time (and help you post more often)!

Got more questions? Post them in the comments and you may be featured in a future post!

Information Products Lesson #1: The New Key to Sales

Are you creating information products? If not, please consider it.

Information products (ebooks, digital reports, audios) are one of the easiest ways to create passive income…. set up an information product, get the marketing rolling and get the checks in the mail. This is exactly what I did when I created my first information product back in 2001…. The Organized Writer ebook. Now every month I get a check from the sales of that ebook!

So where do you start? First by finding a need or problem that you can answer and solve for your customers.  Your product positioning is essential to success with this model. For example, I knew that a lot of creative writers tended to be disorganized, and they would pay for a solution to that problem.

The article below talks about how you can create small reports (7-15 pages) and sell them to customers who don’t want to sift through hundreds of pages of content. They want meaty solutions in a small package. What small reports are your customers looking for?

The New Key To Creating Information Products That Sell Even In Overcrowded, Highly-Competitive Markets

By Jimmy D. Brown of “Small Reports Fortune

I want you to add a new word to your business vocabulary – The word is “specialization”.

A new age has dawned in information marketing. And it’s the age of “specialization”.

Before I explain how this will help you create information products that sell like crazy, let me give you a very brief
history lesson.

(I promise, this won’t hurt a bit. 🙂

Information products online have evolved since I logged onto
the Internet back in 1999…

1) THE SIMPLE AGE.

Times were simple back when I first came online.  And so were
the information products.  Way back when, information products
weren’t readily available online like they are today.  If you
could find ANY information on the topic you were interested in,
you grabbed it.

2) THE SYSTEMATIC AGE.

As more and more people learned how to create and market
information products online, a new era emerged:  the
“systematic” era.  This was a time when huge information products
were created with hundreds of pages.  The idea was to create
comprehensive courses on a particular topic.

3) THE SEPARATION AGE.

As “internet marketing” and other business-related markets
became inundated with product offerings, the birth and rapid
growth of “niche marketing” occurred.  People began separating
themselves from the crowd and focused on “tiny niche topics” of
interest.

4) THE SPECIALIZATION AGE.

Again competition came – even in these small niches.  While there
is still money to be made by focusing on these tiny, untapped
markets — the well is drying up at a fast rate.  Now enters a
new age … the “specialization” age of information marketing.

Which brings us to the lesson –

There is a LOT of money to be made by creating small, 7-15
page reports on PRECISE topics.

Most consumers would rather NOT sift through 100 pages of
information to find out how to do something they are interested
in, nor would they like to pay for 100 pages of information when
they only need chapter 3.

With more and more products available on the market, consumers
are getting pickier and pickier.  They want what they want and
only what they want.

Perhaps the biggest untapped information gold mine lies in this
concept of creating small reports on precise topics.

* 17 Ways to Find New Affiliates Using Google.com
* How To Walk Off 7 Pounds in 7 Days
* 3 Ways To Get Your Next Vacation Free Of Charge
* The 15-Minute Guide To Stalling A Divorce
* Top 7 Ideas For Starting A Homeschool Support Group

Specialized information.

7-15 page reports that sell anywhere from $10-$100, depending upon
the information.

And the benefits of writing these small reports are staggering –

1. You can write a small report in just a few hours of one day.

2. The profit per page ratio is astounding – 10 pages for $10 is
a dollar per page per customer.

3. Small reports are MUCH easier to write than full-length courses.

4. There is a never-ending supply of topics for small reports.

5. You maximize the lifetime value of your customer.  In other words,
you can sell report after report to the SAME customer.

6. A series or collection of your small reports can be bundled into
premium-priced courses over time.

7. When “hot topics” emerge (almost daily!) you can quickly crank
out a small report to strike while the iron is hot.

8. When other marketers are seeing success with their products, you
can create a complementary report to offer for sale as a
supplement.

9. Many people can’t afford to buy (or refuse to buy) high-priced
courses – but virtually anyone can whip out $10-$15.

The list could go on and on.

I’ve been creating small reports for a long time.  In fact, I make
over $15,000 in PROFIT every month from just ONE of my sites.

I know this works.

And not just for me.

I had a customer recently email me to let me know he sold 420 copies
of his VERY FIRST small report, during its first month.

So, what I want to convince you to do is this –

***TRY IT FOR YOURSELF****

Create a small 7-15 page report and begin selling it online and see
what kind of results you see.

A new information age has dawned –  the age of specialization!

Create your own “special” reports and get your piece of the pie.

Jimmy D. Brown is the author of “Small Reports Fortune” – if
you can write 7-15 page small reports, you can earn a living
online working just a few hours each week from your home.
Look for his EXCLUSIVE formula “Creating A Six-Figure Income
With Small Reports.

Julie here – I’d love to hear about your successes and challenges in creating small information product reports… comment below and let me know how it’s going. I’ll answer your questions in future posts.

Position Your Preview Call for Phenomenal Results

I’m always on the hunt for better ways you to sell… without actually having to “sell” someone. I’ve been very impressed with the ideas from Lisa Sasevich and thought I share one of her articles with you on how to use a preview teleseminar call to close more business. She gives some very specific language you can use -enjoy!  Julie

Position Your Preview Call for Phenomenal Results

by Lisa Sasevich, The Invisible Close Blog

About a year ago, I worked with Purpose Coach Tim Kelley to discover my blessing, the work that I was put on this earth to do, that I’ve always done, whether I was being paid for it or not. I discovered that my blessing is to help experts who are making a difference get their message out.

One way I’ve done that is through teleseminars. Over the past eight months, I’ve had the honor of contributing to thousands of heart-centered entrepreneurs and have enjoyed the rewards that come from having done FIVE 6-figure-plus launches. That’s right, my income has skyrocketed simply by sharing my blessing in a more leveraged way.

Naturally, as soon as I developed my winning formula I couldn’t wait to share it! So, I developed another groundbreaking teleseminar – “5 Simple Secrets to 6-Figure Teleseminars: How to make BIG FAST MONEY doing what you LOVE!”

I launched my teleseminar with a preview call that revealed my exact formula for how to craft a profitable “Invisible Close” preview call. The first part of the formula for crafting a profitable preview call that sells is Positioning. At the beginning of your call, to get your listeners on board fast, you need to position five specific areas. Here they are:

Step 1 of The Invisible Close Profitable Preview Call Formula: Positioning

1. Position Yourself

During your preview call, the first thing you position is yourself, and you do that with your introduction, which needs to show that you’re both credible and vulnerable.

You’ve likely heard people lead classes who share how accomplished they are, but you may not like them. They feel separate from you. People don’t buy from teachers they don’t like and trust. So you need to tell a story that both shows your credibility and your vulnerability. During my preview call, I shared with listeners that in my early days, when I used to teach women to understand and appreciate men, I regularly closed 60-80% of the room. But I also shared that I used to cry over the women who didn’t register because I so badly wanted them to have the transformation we offered. That intro story shows my extremely high conversion rates, which gives me credibility, and also shows that I have a heart, which gives me vulnerability. Being vulnerable allows your audience to appreciate that you have been where they are; you are a real person and you get them.

2. Position Your Topic

What is the possible outcome the audience could experience from being on your call? Or, from doing your work? This is where you want to grab them. In my call, I talked about the successful launches I’ve done, and the one that we parlayed into a million dollars! You can also position your topic by sharing the outcomes that your clients or students have had from working with you.

3. Position Your Audience

You want to let the listeners know that they are in the right place, so mention the groups of people who would benefit. For instance, I said, “This is for you if you’re tired of being the best-kept secret in your field. If you’re looking to get your message out in a great, leveraged way, etc….” As people heard themselves mentioned, they knew they were in the right place and became hopeful about what they were about to learn.

4. Position Your Talk

Some teachers sound like a table of contents when they position their talk. You should provide an overview of what you’re going to cover, but do it in outcome-based language. For example, “First I’m going to cover three secrets that are going to have people throwing their wallets at you.” Focus on the transformation that is possible, not the boring line item.

5. Position Your Offer

Let listeners know that you’re going to give, give, give, that the call they are on will bring them great value, and that you’ll be sure to show them how to take it further before the end of the call. That way there’s no surprise AND you can unabashedly share your offer, because you’ve told them it’s coming. I said, “I’m going to share with you everything I can in the short time we have together, and then I’m going to show you how to get more.”

If you’d like to hear more about crafting a successful preview call, as well as the critical mindset shift you need to make before attempting any of this, use this link to access the free playback. It includes all 5 steps of The Invisible Close Preview Call Formula.

If I can make seven-figures teaching my expertise on teleseminars, take a moment to imagine what you can do… Enjoy!

Sales-from-the-podium expert Lisa Sasevich has x-ray vision for seeing the sales opportunities that exist in every company, and the creativity to convert them into gold! If you’re looking for simple, quick and easy ways to boost sales without spending a dime, get your FREE Sales Nuggets now at www.theinvisibleclose.com.

Facebook vs. Twitter – Which is better?

I’m always on the hunt to find you the very best tools and resources for marketing online so here’s a new feature I’m adding to the blog… a round-up of my favorite articles and resources.

You may not have time to read all of these articles so just scan through them and find one or two that really resonate with you!

Facebook vs. Twitter

Should you use Facebook or Twitter to promote your business? I think both and here’s why.

Twitter is the new kid on the block and is getting tons of exposure. You can read more about it here: Small businesses use social media tools to attract customers. Your main goal is to find ways to connect with your customers and help them get to know you.

As you share fantastic resources, your potential customers will start to recognize you as an authority on the topic. Not sure what to Tweet About? Here’s a list of the Top Five Types of Twitter Messages to Grow Your Business

Facebook definitely has its advantages, though, and you can read more in this article: 5 reasons Facebook is better than Twitter for your business. I love Facebook for a couple reasons: first, it gives you more opportunities to interact with your friends and fans, especially when all my activities show up on my friends pages. Second, Facebook Events are also a great way to promote your upcoming events and invite your friends.

The trick here is to make sure you have two things: time set aside to devote to social marketing your business and the very best tools set up to make this quick and easy. I went to a client’s office and in an hour we had her set up with her profiles and a quick and easy way to connect both her Twitter and Facebook accounts to promote her upcoming event.

One last resource for you as you contemplate how to increase your authority and credibility online…check out this free resource Authority Rules: The 10 Rock-Solid Elements of Effective Online Marketing (read online or via the PDF).

Workshop – Twitter and Facebook and Social Media, Oh My!

Twitter and Facebook and Social Media, Oh My!
6 Secrets to Cut Advertising and Generate Sales (and How to Find the Time!)

Mr. King of Sage North America estimates that small businesses have a 12-month window to figure out online social networking. “I hate to say it, but if they don’t, they’ll get left in the dust,” he said. “It’s here to stay.” – NY Times, June 4, 2009

Is your business ready? Are you using Twitter, Facebook and Social Media to build your business, decrease your advertising and generate more business?

Join us for a two-hour workshop where you’ll learn:

  • Six secrets to making social media work for busy business owners
  • What is “social media marketing”?
  • Case studies of how businesses successfully incorporated social media into their marketing (one company increased revenue 140%!)
  • About the Online Business Blueprint (what to do yourself and what to hire out)
  • The three most important tools to save you time and money (and why you MUST have a presence on these sites!)

This jam-packed workshop will cover the lastest trends in new media marketing (including Twitter). If you’ve wondered what all the fuss is about, come join us and get the scoop.

Bring your business cards so we can network.

When:  Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Time:  9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Where: Java G’s Coffee Shop (just over the Page Bridge in St. Charles.  See map here.)
Cost: Only $59

Sign up early because the classroom only has room for 20 people (and we only have 18 seats left)!

How One Company Increased Their Lifetime Customer Value from $50 to $500

What is your lifetime value for a customer? Not sure?

Let’s start with the definition. Per Wikipedia, the customer lifetime value “is the present value of the future cash flows attributed to the customer relationship.” So you want to know, What will this customer be worth to me over the entire time I sell to him or her? When you know this information, you can determine how much to spend acquiring new customers, and on advertising and marketing.

Yesterday I was thinking about one of my absolute favorite customers, Jeannie Krause-Taylor of PathwaysforAging.com. We have been working together for years, first in one of my classes, then for individual coaching, and we created her blogsite.  Right now Jeannie is in my TLCforYourWebsite live course. Obviously, she has a tremendously high lifetime customer value for me (in addition to the fact that I love working with her)!

So which one of your clients has a high lifetime customer value for you? What could you do to convert more of your current clients to this level?

I’m reading the first chapter of a new book, Changing the Channel: 12 Easy Ways to Make Millions for Your Business.  The book is written by the gurus from one of the most successful information marketing businesses ever, Agora, Inc.  In this chapter, the author explains how the business started using direct mail to sell information products, and how they started using the Internet… and had disappointing results with profits going down!

But then they switched their approach, adding an email newsletter which educated its readers AND advertised the Agora products.

The authors explain how the buying curve shifted dramatically for two reasons: lots of free education/information in the newsletter and messages sent much more often. It used to cost them 50 cents to contact a customer; with the Internet and their e-mail newsletter, they could now contact them for a fraction of a penny.

As a result of this new process, the lifetime value of the customer increased almost tenfold in ten years, from $50 to $500!

What can you take away from this example?

  • What is the lifetime value of your customers? If you haven’t started tracking it, start today.
  • Do you have an email newsletter?
  • Does it give out outstanding education and information for your readers? If not, make some changes with the goal to be the best resource for your readers.
  • How often do you send your messages? It’s an interesting balance between determining how much contact is enough and how much is too much.
  • What other ways could you increase the value each customer provides?

Oh and if you want to read the book, you’ll get details on the 12 marketing channels Agora uses, along with their secrets for successful information marketing. Buy it here. I’m getting the Kindle version for my iPhone.

Do you have a favorite part of the book?

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