best business practices of the most successful info

Comments

Transcription

best business practices of the most successful info
April 2008
Volume 3, Issue 4
Price: $99.00
Best Business Practices of the Most Successful Info-Marketers Around the World
CHAIRMAN’S NOTE
Today’s Info-Marketing
Shortcut
ISSN 1936-9905
April 2008
Volume 3, Issue 4
Information Marketing
Association
W
The Superman of
Information Marketing
Bill Glazer, Chairman
Information Marketing
Association
www.Info-Marketing.org
President and CEO
Glazer-Kennedy Insider’s
Circle® LLC
www.DanKennedy.com
President and CEO
BGS Marketing LLC
www.BGSMarketing.com
hen I created my first information
marketing business, BGS Marketing, I got
started by creating a box of manuals, a
collection of my ads and an audio training program.
The business model was to create an initial “kit,”
with a price of $997.00 to $1,497.00, to sell as
an introductory product. Then, as you acquired
customers, you worked to convince them to subscribe
to your monthly newsletter.
P.O. Box 14629
Tallahassee, FL 32317-4629
Phone: 850/222-6000
Fax: 850/222-6002
Web: www.Info-Marketing.org
This model was a huge innovation to the previous
one, which was selling a monthly newsletter without
the first sale. The initial product sale enabled the
info-marketer to do a lot more marketing and to
gain exposure with more customers than he could
with the newsletter alone. While this model was
successful, it has been surpassed. Today, this is not
the model I recommend to info-marketers getting
started in business.
Bill Glazer
Chairman
Info-marketers are having a lot of success starting
their businesses as coaches. Today, coaching is a
popular trend, and it’s common for some customers
to have multiple coaches helping them with different
aspects of their lives.
This month’s Journal includes three info-marketers
who have started their businesses within the last
few years (all since 2005) and have grown them into
large businesses by offering coaching as their primary
products. Pay special attention to the work they put
into getting their businesses started. Coaching isn’t
a get-rich-with-no-work system. There is plenty of
work involved.
With a coaching business, you are creating and
offering a product that today’s customer wants. In
that environment, it’s easier to achieve success.
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
2
Robert Skrob
President
Dan Kennedy
Chairman Emeritus
Susan Trainor
Newsletter Editor
Groves Design
Graphic Designer
Info-Marketing Insiders’ Journal
is published monthly by the
Information Marketing Association
and delivered by mail. Subscriptions
include full membership benefits in
the IMA and cost just $99 monthly
($109 for international members).
Back issues are $99 each
($95 for members).
Copyright © 2008
Information Marketing Association
All Rights Reserved
ALTHOUGH THE IMA BELIEVES THE CONTENT TO
BE ACCURATE, COMPLETE AND CURRENT, THE
IMA MAKES NO WARRANTY AS
TO THE ACCURACY, COMPLETENESS OR
CURRENCY OF THE CONTENT.
IT IS YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO VERIFY ANY
INFORMATION BEFORE RELYING ON IT.
NONE OF THE INFORMATION CONTAINED
HEREIN SHOULD BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL
ADVICE, NOR IS ANYONE ASSOCIATED WITH
THE INFORMATION MARKETING ASSOCIATION
ENGAGED IN THE PRACTICE OF LAW. IF YOU
NEED LEGAL ADVICE, PLEASE SEEK THE
ADVICE OF INDEPENDENT LEGAL COUNSEL.
april 2008
Contents
FEATURES
5
Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap Connect
With Their Customers to Uncover
Their Concerns and Fulfill Their
Biggest Needs
These partners made up for their lack of experience with
work, travel and guts. Their story provides a template
anyone can follow to create a high-price coaching infobusiness without any previous knowledge of the industry.
5
No experience? No problem
for these coaches!
11
‘Coaching Millions’ Is Music to Milana
Leshinsky’s Ears
Frustrated by competition for cheap website design,
Milana Leshinsky turned into a coach who teaches
Web marketing. By partnering with other coaches, she
created an industry hub.
14 Extensive Training for Customers
Encourages Ascension to Coaching
11
Coaching the
coaches to make
millions
COLUMNS &
DEPARTMENTS
REGULATORY ACTION
4
Postal Changes
UPCOMING EVENTS
17
IMA Calendar
JOINT VENTURE OPPORTUNITIES
20
It’s Time for You to “Cash
In” BIG On Your “Toll
Booth” Position
Charging $25,000.00 for a coaching program is easy
when you do the work necessary to ensure your
students are successful. In this program, students get
three coaches within one program.
18 Ensuring Your Testimonials Comply
With the Law
Testimonials and endorsements are becoming more
important today in our online world, where customers are
used to going to forums and other places on the Internet
to find third-party verification about the company they
wish to deal with.
PRESIDENT’S REPORT
22
Get Obamomentum for
Your Info-Business
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
3
april 2008
Postal Changes
Affecting Your InfoMarketing Business
Two More States
File Do-Not-Mail
Legislation
May 2008 Postage Increase
The 2008 state legislative year began with nine
states having bills that would create state-run do-notmail registries—seven states carried over legislation
from their 2007 sessions, and two states filed new
bills at the beginning of their sessions. Illinois and
New Hampshire filed legislation for the first time. New
Hampshire lawmakers already voted the proposal down.
Hawaii, Maryland, Michigan, New York, North Carolina,
Rhode Island, Tennessee, Vermont and Washington all
have legislation that carried forward from their 2007
legislative sessions.
The cost of your marketing and fulfillment is increasing
in May. The United States Postal Service has announced
the price for a one-ounce first-class stamp will increase
from 41 to 42 cents on May 12. Plus, the 9x12 envelope
most of us mail our monthly newsletter in is going up
from 97 cents to $1.00.
The USPS plans to increase prices for these products
on an annual basis each May, according to David
Partenheimer, a USPS spokesman. “Smaller, predictable
price changes will allow our business customers to better
plan and budget for their mailings,” he says.
This will avoid the problems caused by the old pricing
system, where several years went by without a price
change, and then some mailers were hit with a big
increase. “We’re moving toward the industry standard.
Most shipping companies adjust their prices every year,”
Partenheimer notes.
There are two main proponents for these proposals,
consumer groups and green advocates.
In May 2007, the USPS increased postage for “flats,”
which are envelopes that are larger than 6x9, by
imposing an additional 39-cent surcharge. Although the
USPS announced the increase three months in advance,
the severity of the increase on these flats took mailers
by surprise. The Direct Marketing Association is still
appealing the rate disparity to the United States Postal
Regulatory Commission.
Consumer groups believe these registries would allow
consumers to opt-out of fraudulent mail solicitations,
“unnecessary” credit card solicitations and financially
damaging home refinance offers. They assert that
removing these solicitations from the mail will prevent
consumers from making bad financial choices.
Prices for other mailing services, such as standard
mail, periodicals, package services (including single-piece
parcel post) and special services, will also change (see
chart below).
Selected Prices & Services
Current New
(Effective May 12)
First-Class Mail Letter (1 oz.)................ 41¢............42¢
First-Class Mail Letter (2 oz.)................ 58¢............59¢
Postcard.............................................. 26¢............27¢
Large Envelope (2 oz.).......................... 97¢............$1.00
First-Class Mail International Letter
(1 oz. to Canada and Mexico)............. 69¢............72¢
First-Class Mail International Letter
(1 oz. to other countries)................... 90¢............94¢
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
These registries would be similar to the do-not-call
registries run by the federal government and many
states. Consumers could register their addresses in the
database, and then direct mailers sending unsolicited
mail would have to purchase the registry listing and
scrub their lists to remove those addresses.
4
Going green is the top priority of several organized
environmental groups concerned with the volume of
waste in the direct mail industry. They promote do-notmail lists as a way of dealing with “junk” mail filling
landfills and carbon dioxide released from vehicles
delivering “extra” and “unnecessary” mail.
Each time these bills are heard, postal and printing
unions unite with affected businesses to educate
lawmakers on the perils of reducing mail volume.
Without advertising mail, the price of a first-class stamp
would increase astronomically, the number of delivery
days would decrease and with fewer delivery drivers, the
distance postal employees would have to drive would
increase dramatically.
To date, support for these bills is minimal. Few are
receiving hearings, all but one of the bills that received
a hearing was voted down and none of these bills have
moved forward through the lawmaking process.
april 2008
Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap
Connect With Their Customers
to Uncover Their Concerns and
Fulfill Their Biggest Needs
B
rett Kitchen describes
his business life before
information marketing as
“worse than working at Wal-Mart.”
“I was an insurance broker,” Brett
says. “I sold commercial property
casualty insurance, workers’
compensation coverage and business
liability, that sort of thing. The only
thing I liked about the insurance
business is that it got me into the
information business,” he half jokes.
“Basically, in the insurance
business, you get treated like a WalMart employee. You have to have
your cell phone on 24 hours a day,
seven days a week,” he says. “Actually
it’s worse than being a Wal-Mart
employee—at least they get to go
home! When you’re in the insurance
business, you’re the first person that
clients call when a disaster happens.
You get calls like ‘My son just killed
somebody,’ or ‘My building just
burned down; am I covered?’ If you
or one of your staff members makes a
mistake, and the event is not covered,
then you’re personally liable. I really
got tired of that emotional roller
coaster.”
Another thing Brett grew tired of
was cold calling businesses. “When I
started out, they gave me the Yellow
Pages and a telephone,” he recalls.
“The company had decided to pursue
excavation contractors, so I would
call contractors all day, trying to set
appointments to show them how we
could save them some money. We
were competing exclusively on price,
Brett Kitchen and Ethan Kap quickly discovered that their
customers discounted their knowledge because of their apparent
youth. They overcame this perception by creating a cartoon
branding themselves as “The Traffic Guys” because in-store traffic
is what customers ardently desire the most.
which is a pretty poor way of doing
things.”
when I started marketing instead of
cold calling.”
After about a year of doing cold
calls, Brett started looking for a
better method to get customers. He
began studying marketing and came
across Dan Kennedy. “Dan showed
me how to reverse the process, so I
would have people calling me instead
of me calling them. That made
business substantially more fun!”
Brett laughs. “It just really took off
The core of Brett’s marketing
was a good direct mail campaign. “I
targeted my mail to a very specific
group, for example, excavation
contractors with more than 10
employees,” he explains. “We got a 17
to 1 return on that mailing in the first
year. In the insurance business, if you
can just break even in the first year,
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
5
continued on page 6
april 2008
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 5
While attending marketing seminars by Joe Polish and
Michael Jans, Brett Kitchen thought to himself, “I want to be
the guy up front teaching those seminars, not the guy sitting
in the seat listening.”
you’re doing well because you keep
the majority of it for the next year,
but we were making a killing on the
first year. So, everything after that
was gravy.”
Life was going very well for Brett.
He was generating lots of clients, and
he was making good money. That
begs the question, why upset the
apple cart and try something new?
“That’s the question my wife asked
me,” Brett smiles. “We had a new
baby and had just moved into a new
house, so it was kind of a risky move.
The reality was, I didn’t love the
insurance business. Even though I
was making good money, I just hated
going to work.”
What Brett does love is marketing.
While attending marketing seminars
by Joe Polish and Michael Jans, he
thought to himself, “I want to be
the guy up front teaching those
seminars, not the guy sitting in the
seat listening.”
He gained additional motivation to
make a change in his career when his
agency’s owners gave him a lose-lose
decision to make. “They restructured
the business, basically taking away
about 30 percent of the brokers’
income, or we could quit,” Brett
says. “In the insurance business, you
don’t just quit. If you do, you have to
start over from scratch because you
walk away from your residuals and
have a non-compete with all of your
customers.”
Along with a business partner,
Ethan Kap, Brett made the tough
decision to quit the insurance
business and work on building an
information business. “Partnering
with Ethan helped in two ways: It
was better for both of us if we could
share the expenses of starting a
company, and we tend to have a lot
of synergy, so we get a lot more done
together than we do on your own,”
Brett says.
The duo set out to teach
contractors how to get more
business, but the timing wasn’t right.
“At that time, the contractors didn’t
need more business,” Brett explains.
“They were so busy, they couldn’t
even stay on top of it all. Ethan and I
knew how to attract more business,
so we didn’t have a good message to
market match.”
Fortunately, what’s true for one
industry at any given point in time
isn’t true for all. Brett’s best friend
had started a furniture and mattress
company during the time that Brett
was transitioning away from the
insurance industry. “My friend ended
up going out of business because he
didn’t know how to get customers,”
Brett recalls. “That was a red flag
to us, and we thought there might
be a need in that industry we could
address. So, we did our research,
and discovered that the furniture
business was an industry in turmoil.
That’s why we chose it for our
information marketing business.”
Brett and Ethan carefully
considered many aspects of the
furniture business before settling on
this niche. For one thing, neither of
them had affinity with the industry,
so they needed to have other solid
reasons to approach this group.
“One of the things we considered
was whether or not an industry was
currently spending a lot of money
on getting customers,” Brett says.
“Furniture retailers spend a great
deal of money on advertising, and we
knew we had information that could
make their ads perform better.”
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
6
To help build some affinity with
furniture retailers, Brett and Evan
subscribed to the trade magazines
and attended tradeshows. “By
reading their trade magazines and
going to their events, we learned
our potential customers’ lingo and
began to understand their concerns.
That was very beneficial to us,” Brett
explains.
Brett’s and Ethan’s time at the
tradeshows was spent chatting with
retailers, uncovering their biggest
problems. “There’s nothing like
being there in person,” Brett says.
“Through casual conversations, we
were able to uncover the furniture
retailers’ biggest concern. Without
question, it was a decline in traffic.
Their advertising wasn’t working as
well as it should. That is right up
our alley, so we knew we had a good
match.”
After researching their niche, Brett
and Ethan created a lead generation
direct mail piece that told the story
of Brett’s friend and his failed
furniture business. “The headline
was something like, ‘How my friend
Morgan Garrett was left bankrupt,
bloody and sweaty, standing with
broken pieces of his company
because he didn’t follow these three
marketing guidelines.’ Morgan had
actually cut out the inner coils of a
mattress and was standing on the
sidewalk trying to get traffic into
his store,” Brett says. “It was July, it
was 110 degrees and he was sweaty
and bloody from cutting his hands
on those mattress coils. Shortly
thereafter, he ended up going out of
business. It was a compelling story,
and we started generating leads for
our box of information on how to
improve advertising to bring in more
business.”
april 2008
To build their status within the
industry, Brett and Ethan exhibited
at industry tradeshows and got to
know people in the business. “I
spent at least 70 percent of my day
just meeting people,” Brett recalls.
“I ended up meeting the editor for
Furniture World magazine, and I offered
to write articles for him. It changed
our credibility instantly when we
started appearing in magazines.”
Brett recommends befriending
editors in the industry, beginning
with local or regional publications.
“After you get published in one
magazine, the next time you
approach an editor, you can say, ‘Hey,
we write articles for XYZ.’ That really
changes an editor’s perspective on
working with you.”
Another way to get in the door of a
publication is through advertising. “If
you’re going to write in magazines,
your best chance at getting in is to
spend money with them first,” Brett
says. “We have found over and over
again that if you start advertising
with them and then you start asking
to write for them, they’re much more
receptive.
Today, Brett and Ethan use a fourtier marketing approach program.
“We have four levels of membership,
and our two main levels are offered
at $300.00 a month and $1,000.00 a
month.”
To fill those memberships, they use
a multi-step marketing sequence that
includes direct mail, email, fax and—
the method Brett calls “golden”—
outbound telemarketing. To find good
telemarketers, Brett and Ethan turned
to their personal network of contacts
… and college students. “A good tip
for somebody looking for part-time
telemarketers is college kids. We
pay them strictly on commission, so
there’s no overhead until they make a
sale,” Brett explains.
As their business was getting
started, the partners did something
that a lot of info-marketers do
not do: They took inbound calls
Hiring celebrities and giving away cars isn’t only for established
info-marketers. Ethan Kap and Brett Kitchen conducted an
aggressive publicity campaign within the furniture retail industry.
The car giveaway got them lots of positive attention and over
$40,000.00 in free magazine advertising.
themselves. “I can’t tell you how
valuable it is to answer the phone!”
Brett exclaims. “We learned so much
about the concerns people had,
and then we would address those
concerns in a sales letter. We learned
that about 70 to 80 percent of people
won’t buy without talking with a live
human being first, so they can have
their concerns about the product
addressed.”
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
7
Another thing that Brett and Ethan
do differently from many other infomarketers is to use their fax machine
to receive responses from leads. “Over
50 percent of our responses from a
mailer come in over the fax,” Brett
says.
Their demographic is 40- to
65-year-old Caucasian men who
continued on page 8
april 2008
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 7
Member Benefits for Retailers
Who Want More Traffic, More
Sales and More Tools to Beat
the Big Box Stores
Market Domination
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Money In The Bank Newsletter
Limited Access to Members’ Website GOLD Material
2 Coaching Calls Per Month
Hundreds of Marketing Pieces Done For You on the
Members’ Website
Access to the Members’ Only “Market Dominator” Website
Instant Success Marketing System (7 Manuals & 12 CD’s)
Entry in the Retailer of the Year Contest: A Trip to Hawaii
Veto Your Top Competitor
Email Mastermind Group
Platinum Club
All Market Domination Member Benefits, plus:
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
The “2 Million Dollar Promotion System”
14 “Direct Response Instant Traffic” Circular Systems
The “Instant Expert System” Including 2 Coauthored Books
Free Publicity System (6 Done For You Press Releases)
Done For You “Customer Keeper” Newsletter System
3 “Never Lost” Data Capture Websites
Email Follow Up Software System (With 7 Prewritten Emails)
Membership in the “National Association of Retailers for
Consumer Protection”
2 Consumer Advisories (Furniture and Bedding)
Move In Marketing System
4 Quarterly Platinum Only Teleconferences
Monthly One-on-One Coaching With The Traffic Guys
Exclusive Access to the Platinum Club Website
3 Closed Door Platinum Mastermind Meetings
Platinum Club Newsletter Insert
Weekly “Heads Up” Platinum Fax Alert
Veto Your Top 3 Competitors
Entry in the “Better Your Best” Contest: Win The Traffic Guys’
BMW 328xi
Here are Brett and Ethan’s coaching program benefits. They
launched their info-marketing business by emphasizing fully
automated marketing systems for their coaching members.
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
8
have conservative values and are
extremely skeptical. “They’re not a
run-out-and-buy-a-product-becauseyou-want-to-fit-in-with-the-crowd
group. In fact, they’re just the
opposite. When they see our list of
testimonials, they’ll sit there and call
them before they do anything else.
They’ll look them up on the Internet;
they’ll ask their friends; they’ll
call all of our customers,” Brett
says, shaking his head. “It’s kind of
irritating, but that’s who they are, so
what we have found works absolutely
the best for us is teleseminars.”
How did they learn to do
teleseminars? Brett says, “Two
words: Michael Cage.” Using the
Michael Cage formula (www.
InfoMarketingTeleseminars.com),
Brett and Ethan found they could
hold teleseminars with only 30 to
50 people on the call and sell 30
percent of them. “We would have 10
new members join in one day after
listening to a teleseminar,” Brett
says. “That’s a good day.”
The duo also used small regional
seminars to sell their program.
“Our first conferences were $50.00
refundable preview seminars where
we brought people in from a local
radius and sold them into the
coaching program. Each time we
spoke, we generated a 20-percent
closing ratio, so we would get five,
six or seven new members that way.”
To keep members in their
program, Brett and Ethan use a little
something called “food.”
“We use a company called Savannah
Sweets,” Brett explains. “It’s an
original candy that comes directly
from Savannah, Georgia. “Within the
first month of members joining, we
send them Savannah Sweets, which
everybody loves, and then we send
more every couple of months. Our
platinum members get a different
package of food every month.”
They also have had success with
using one-on-one telephone calls
to solidify their relationships with
april 2008
new members. “I can guarantee
anybody that your retention will
go up significantly with increased
one-on-one interaction with your
members,” Brett says. “It’s not easy
to do on a large scale, but that’s one
of the ways we built our business.
When members joined, they got a
one-on-one orientation call with
me or Ethan. Then, as part of the
$300.00 a month program, we’d give
them a 20- or 30-minute coaching
call each month.” For the first two
or three calls, Brett and Ethan would
call the members if they didn’t call
in. “After that, we felt like we had a
relationship with them, so we didn’t
need to pursue it. Members could
choose to call in if they wanted to.”
Now, Brett and Ethan are planning
their first super-conference, and as
usual, they are doing things in their
own unique way. “We’ve hired Miss
Hawaii to be our celebrity, and we’re
giving away a BMW 328xi and a trip
to Hawaii,” Brett says, “so, now the
pressure is on to fill the room!”
Even though it will break their
hearts to give that car away (Ethan
drove it for six months, and now Brett
is having his turn), it has generated
a lot of interest in their conference.
“When we bought the BMW, we
didn’t have any money in the bank, so
Finally! Get effective marketing that puts customers in your store…ALREADY DONE FOR YOU!
How To Get Ads, Mailers,
Marketing Pieces And Commercials
ALREADY DONE FOR YOU
Proven To Flood Your Store With Paying Customers
“We’ve had the best weekend in 6 months thanks to you guys!” Belinda Maggard
From our desk to yours…
We’re Ethan Kap and Brett Kitchen, known in the industry as The Traffic Guys. We help
independent home furnishings retailers, like you, increase traffic and sales without
spending more on advertising.
If you’re frustrated like the other independent retailers we know, our message is for
you.
The market conditions are brutal, big box stores are dominant competitors in every
market, imports are eroding margins, the internet bypasses traditional marketing, the
housing industry is in the dumps, and there’s more - way more. But you get the picture,
because you live in this picture.
Looking for help to fight these trends? Want to restore your dominance of the past?
You needn’t look any further. We can show you a few simple marketing strategies and
help you implement these strategies and advertisements to put customers in your store.
Those “tried and true” sales and promotions you’ve used in times past are tired and worn
out. Most retailers agree they are too expensive and they don’t work effectively in
today’s market place.
The market conditions are different, the competitors are different, and the buyers
are different. The defining question is – why aren’t you different?
The good news is—you can be different! Marketing and advertising are all about
differentiation. You will never get a different result (more store traffic) by using
marketing and advertising of the past.
We guarantee different results--more traffic, more sales and more loyal customers---but
first you need a change. But it’s not a difficult change, because we will help you. The
change will come from embracing our strategies and implementing our proven methods
that will explode your sales and re-establish you as a dominant presence in your
Brett and Ethan emphasize differentiation of marketing and
the ease of having everything done for you in the 22-page
sales letter to promote their coaching program.
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
9
it was a total leap of faith, but it has
turned out to be so worthwhile,” Brett
says. “We’ve gotten over $40,000.00
of free advertising in magazines
because of it.”
Brett and Ethan offered
sponsorship of the car giveaway to
two major industry magazines in
exchange for free full-page space
in their magazines every month
leading up to the conference. “We’ve
taken the car to two shows and put
magnetic signs on it to advertise
Furniture World’s and Sleep Savvy’s
sponsorship, and they’ve given us
free full-page ads for the past 10 or 12
months,” Brett says.
Joint Venture
Opportunities
Brett and Ethan are interested in
coaching people who want to get
into the info-marketing business.
They have a $300.00 per month
program with a step-by-step
process for creating a business.
For more information, visit www.
[email protected] or
send a fax to 480/393-4222.
They are also interested in
promoting to others’ lists their
guide on how small business owners
can survive the big box stores. The
book is called Stop the Small Business
Genocide and will be published by
Morgan James this spring. Fax
inquiries to 480/393-4222.
www.Info-Marketing.org
More on the Web
The complete 22-page
sales letter that Brett
Kitchen and Ethan
Kap use to offer their
coaching program is
available online at the
IMA member site.
april 2008
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
10
april 2008
‘Coaching Millions’ Is Music
to Milana Leshinsky’s Ears
T
his is the story of a music
teacher from the Ukraine who
immigrated to the United
States, took up Web design and
ended up creating a very successful
coaching business.
Milana Leshinsky’s story goes all
the way back to her childhood half
a world away. “I have studied music
my whole life, since the age of 8,” she
says, “and I always knew I would be
a music teacher.” That goal changed
for Milana when she moved to the
United States, where she lost interest
in teaching. “The music education
system is much different here,” she
explains. “In Russia, if you study
something, you do it to become an
athlete, a dancer, a swimmer or a
musician. You don’t do it because
your mom wants you to get some
extracurricular activities. It’s a
different attitude in general, and I
just lost my passion to teach music.”
After having her first child, Milana
decided to change careers. She went
into business administration and
later computer programming. Her
creative bent led her to doing Web
design for an insurance company
and a newspaper. Later, she began
working freelance. Over time, Milana
noticed that certain types of clients
kept hiring her to design websites.
They were coaches, and at that time,
she had no idea what a coach was.
“I was clueless,” Milana smiles, “but
after the third time a coach came to
me for a website, I took notice!”
Milana started investigating
what coaching is, who coaches
are and what was going on in the
coaching industry. After 1-1/2 years
of research, she was ready to open
the Association of Coaching &
Consulting Professionals on the
Web (ACC POW), and she started a
membership site for coaches, using
all of the materials she had gathered
during her research.
Hold on. Milana went from not
even knowing what a coach was to
creating an association for coaches?
How did that happen? “If I had to
go back and put my finger on the
moment when all of a sudden I
became known in coaching, I would
have to attribute it to two factors,”
she says. “First, one of the clients
who hired me to do website design
was a coach and part of a coaching
team. She invited me to be a coach
on her team. I didn’t consider myself
a coach, but I said O.K. anyway. Later
on, I wrote an ebook, How to Grow
Your Coaching Practice on the Internet,
and she wrote the forward for it.
Because she was established in the
coaching world, her partnership in
my ebook gave me a lot of credibility.
The second thing that propelled
my success and let me niche in the
coaching industry was a website
called Tele-Class.com by Thomas
Leonard. Advertising on this site
where coaches gathered was my
doorway into the industry.”
Milana populated her website by
using monthly teleseminars with
invited guests. At first, success came
slowly. “My first teleclass, I had
one person come,” she laughs. Her
next one was more successful, with
30 people on the line, but she still
had a little something to learn. “I
started to get the fact that if I just
did a teleseminar, nothing was going
to happen,” Milana explains, “so,
at the end of the teleclass, I offered
a program that I did not have yet. I
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
11
Milana Leshinsky started
out as a Web designer, and
she turned her knowledge
and skills into a product
that teaches coaches how
to generate clients through
the Web. Since then, Milana
has propelled herself to guru
status within the coaching
industry.
had a concept of the program, and I
thought if anybody was interested,
I could quickly design it since I
had all of the content in my head. I
had seven people registered for the
teleseminar, so I called my yet-tobe-created product ‘7 Habits of Most
Successful Coaches.’”
The offer worked, and suddenly,
Milana had coaches enrolling in her
program and joining her membership
site. “The offer was a 12-week
program based on the teleclass,” she
explains. “It taught how to make
a website that would allow you to
enroll clients directly from the site.
continued on page 12
april 2008
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 11
It was everything I had learned by
working with coaches designing their
websites. Basically, I had compared
the websites of coaches who were
broke to the websites of coaches who
were doing really well. I noticed that
successful coaches have products,
names for themselves, processes
and follow-up sequences. Their sites
look extremely professional. So, I
gathered all of these factors into a
program, and I coached people who
came to me and said, ‘Milana, I have
this coaching website. I invested
thousands of dollars into it, but it
doesn’t seem to bring any business.’
Then I would critique the site and
work with the client to create content
to rework it.”
It took some trial and error to hit
upon what Milana’s customers would
pay for her membership site. “I tried
different pricing models,” she says.
“I started with $97.00 a year, but
that didn’t work very well. I had only
about 10 members, so I switched
to $39.95 per quarter. That worked,
and I still use that pricing today.”
Actually, Milana lets her site run “in
the background” now. “I have not
done any updates for at least a year,”
she says. “With everything else going
on in my business, it has remained a
part of my offering, but it’s no longer
part of my product funnel. But it’s a
great back-up income, and I don’t do
anything to market it.”
Another thing Milana doesn’t
do anymore is design websites. “I
had lost interest, and I couldn’t get
clients,” she recalls. “I remember
walking with my husband in the
park and talking about this, and he
said, ‘Why don’t you just lower the
pricing.’ So, I did. I went down to
$250.00 for a six-page website—and
I attracted the jerkiest clients I ever
had in my life! I hated that particular
period of my business life, so I just
stopped marketing for these clients.”
Milana needed a breakthrough to
get to the next level of her business.
She found what she needed during a
mastermind session, Infopreneur’s
Think Tank with Sterling Valentine.
“I wanted to do a conference,” Milana
says, “but I didn’t like to go to live
conferences myself. I was a mom
with two children, so I was looking
for a way to do a conference without
actually doing a live conference. I
thought I could do something similar
to Sterling’s mastermind group for
coaches over the telephone. Then,
a friend of mine suggested opening
it up to the public. I did that and
gave my program a different name:
telesummit. With Sterling, I created
a worldwide global event for coaches
that lasted for three years.”
Milana went on to teach others
how to do telesummits for their
industries. “Before I did the
telesummit, the word simply didn’t
exist. Now, if you do a Web search
on the word telesummit, you’ll see
thousands of results,” she says. “The
idea caught on, and that was my big
break.”
Milana’s telesummits appealed to
people who didn’t want to travel, and
she attracted people from all over
the world. “On the first call of my
telesummit, there were participants
from 17 different countries!” she
exclaims. “By doing a conference
virtually, I was able to tap into a
Want to Hire Milana? Then You Have to Read Her
Book!
Before Milana Leshinsky created her information product “Coaching Millions,” she
wrote a book called Coaching Millions Business Building System. “When I wrote my
book, I knew it was going to be my marketing vehicle for my home study course,” she
says. “I wanted to have a book for credibility and for image, but more importantly, I
wanted to have a book as a way of filtering my customers and my clients.
“Right now, if you come to me and say ‘Lana, I want to be your coaching client. Do
you take clients?’ the first question I will ask is, ‘Have you read my book?’ If you say
no, I will not work with you until you have read my book.”
Milana uses her book as a filter to be sure that people understand her philosophies.
“If they don’t agree with me, they will not hire me as their coach. That saves me a
lot of valuable time because I don’t have to convince someone that my product is
important. My book convinces them,” she explains.
The book also gives the buyer an inexpensive way to meet Milana. “If they don’t feel
ready to buy an expensive product, they can buy my book and get to know me a
little bit. They find out what I teach, so the book is really a sales letter for my home study course.”
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
12
april 2008
segment of the coaching industry
that other organizations weren’t
reaching with their live events.”
Her first telesummit ran for eight
days, and the $60,000.00 she netted
from registration fees and sales
online doubled her annual income
of $30,000.00. “That has huge for
me,” Milana says, “but obviously, the
chain reaction happened afterwards.
Now I’m known as the gal who did
the telesummit,” she laughs.
By hosting a telesummit featuring
12 experts in the coaching industry,
Milana was able to go from being
relatively unknown to being right
in the center of the industry. This
new awareness of who she was
increased her revenue from all of her
other products, plus it made it very
easy to book experts for her second
telesummit. “I was overwhelmed
with people trying to get in as a
speaker for my second event.”
Always looking to improve her
business, Milana sought the advice
of a coach when she realized she
had too many products with no
streamlined process to move a client
from one product to the next. “I was
so much into product development
that I ended up with about 27
different mini-products, 27 different
mini-sites selling a product on CD
or as a digital file. With so many
products, it was hard to market.
My business felt very fragmented,
so my coach suggested folding all
of my products into one to create a
system.”
Milana took that advice and
created a home study course called
“Coaching Millions,” based on her
book Coaching Millions Business Building
System. The course is for coaches who
want to build their businesses as well
as for infopreneurs who want to go
beyond selling info-products.
The other part of Milana’s business
is her “Coaching Business Mastery”
program. She says it’s a “very cleverly
disguised home business course,
plus an implementation program.”
The core of the mastery program is
Milana’s home study course. “The
only difference is I’m also offering
an implementation program,” she
explains.
People who enroll in the “Coaching
Business Mastery” program receive
Milana’s home study course,
and two weeks later begin the
implementation program. They get
on a group mentoring call every
Monday. They ask questions based on
what they have heard or read in the
home study course. “So, instead of
my trying to teach the material over
and over again, they actually have the
materials. It’s inside the home study
course,” Milana says.
An important piece of the program
is accountability. “I hate doing
accountability because it’s like
dragging somebody by their hair and
saying, ‘Did you do it? Did you do
it?’ But if they don’t do it, they aren’t
going to succeed with my program,
and then they’re going to come back
to me and ask for a refund. So, for
me, it was very important to create
accountability without having to drag
the person by their hair to complete
the task.”
Milana developed a feature
called “Post Your Documents” to
create accountability without “hair
dragging.” Every week, her clients
are asked automatically through her
auto-responder to post a document
they have developed for that week.
“Whether it’s a freebie, a special
report, niche market research
results, a follow-up sequence
they’re developing or a joint venture
proposal that they’re working on, I
want to see their documents,” she
says. “Whether I give them feedback
or not is irrelevant. The point is that
they are reminded every week to post
their documents, so I can see they’re
sticking with the program.”
A great side benefit to Milana’s
accountability feature is that she
is building an inventory of real-
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
13
Telesummit
A telesummit is a telephonebased, multi-day event.
A telesummit is a unique
opportunity because people
can participate for several
days in training programs,
but not have to spend all the
time and money to travel.
The benefit for the promoter
is not having to book hotels
and taking on all of the
financial risks associated with
a live event.
life examples with before and after
results.
Joint Venture
Opportunities
Milana is looking for unique
products to market to her list, and
she is also interested in marketing
her products to others’ lists. For
all of the details, go to www.
JVwithMilana.com.
www.Info-Marketing.org
More on the Web
The complete text of
Milana Leshinsky’s
ebook How to Grow
Your Coaching Practice
on the Internet is
available for you to
study on the
IMA member
site.
april 2008
Extensive Training for
Customers Encourages
Ascension to Coaching
R
yan Tewis does something
very unusual in the real estate
pre-foreclosures business. He
makes everyone happy. And the great
thing is, through his information
business, he shares his secrets for
helping banks save money, helping
homeowners avoid foreclosure and
making a great living for himself in
the process.
Mentoring played a large role
in Ryan’s initial success in the
real estate industry. “I was in
the travel business and then got
into real estate,” he says. “I very
quickly mastered the niche of preforeclosures because I was fortunate
enough to partner with my real estate
mentors, which happen to be my wife
and father-in-law.” With foreclosures
at an all-time record high, Ryan’s
niche is in the spotlight, making
this a pivotal time in his business.
Homeowners need help and banks
need help, and Ryan is in a unique
position to help homeowners stop
foreclosures and even end up with
some money to give them a fresh
start. He explains:
“When I connect with the
homeowner in foreclosure and
structure a deal to stop the
foreclosure, I then contact the
foreclosing lender and ask them for a
discount on the loan, which is called
a short-sale. I show the bank how
much money it will save by giving
me a discount on the loan now, as
opposed to taking the home all the
way through the foreclosure process.
This is done through our proprietary
Short-Sale Submission PROCESS™,
For Ryan and Angie Tewis and Angie’s father, Claude, a team
approach to real estate investing and info-marketing allowed
them to focus on their strengths and build successful businesses.
which includes our proprietary REO
Spreadsheet™. This process shows
the foreclosing lenders in their
language why it’s good for them to
give us a discount on a loan, so we
can buy the property. Most people
think that the foreclosing lenders
must not like doing this, but the
reality is that they like working with
us because they are able to cut their
losses, minimize their damages and
clear their books of bad debt. In
the end, the way we structure our
deals, it’s a win for the homeowner
in foreclosure, it’s a win for the
foreclosing lender and it’s a win and
profitable for me as the investor.”
With all of this winning going on,
it’s not surprising that people started
coming to Ryan to find out how he
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
14
was making everyone so happy—and
making such a good living himself.
“Coaching is something I fell into
because people saw my success in
the pre-foreclosure biz and offered
me money to show them how to do
it,” he says. “It was a natural and
easy second business for us because
we already had all of the processes
and systems in place, so all we
had to do was teach people how to
duplicate what we had already done.
Initially, we took a handful of people
under our wing, and they became
a great success, so marketing our
coaching service was simple. All we
did was show the success that our
students were having using our preforeclosure investing system, and
people were sold.”
april 2008
To grow his coaching business,
Ryan created a front-end product to
introduce his system to prospective
coaching members. “The first step
was to create a lead generation
product, which was simply the
recordings of a series of Q&A calls
along with success story calls with
some of our students,” he says.
Ryan uses his Content Driven
Sales Cycle™ to sell his products.
“We simply deliver 100-percent pure
content, all teaching, no pitching,” he
explains. “I know it flies in the face
of what most information marketers
are taught to do, but this strategy
and model has worked very well
for us. We do the same thing with
our introductory training product.
Originally, we were going to sell this
package for $197.00, plus shipping.
It’s an excellent product that lays
the foundation of our system and
answers a lot of questions and
misconceptions about this business.
It includes six CD’s and a bonus
DVD that has educational segments
from our live training events. We
decided to offer it for free (all we
asked was that they pay a small
shipping and handling fee to cover
our costs of the package), and the
response was overwhelming.”
The customers that get this free
package are put into Ryan’s funnel,
and he uses an automatic bonding
and conversion system to turn those
free package buyers into $2,500.00
to $5,000.00 seminar attendees. “We
keep in constant touch with both
online and offline and multimedia
marketing,” Ryan says. We use
emails, direct mail, lumpy mail,
postcards, audio postcards, faxes,
voice blasts, etc. We just keep
teaching and delivering value, and
having fun little promotions that
create involvement. When we fill our
funnel with new people who get the
free package, we have a system in
continued on page 16
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
Financial Health Coach Program
Have us in your corner through every deal to get you through any
possible curve ball, hurdle or brick wall that stands in the way of
you and thousands of dollars at the closing table.
1. Ready-to-go (proven) “Free Recorded Messages” and scripts
for your 800# system!
2. 7 Day Auction Course “The Ultimate Exit Strategy Manual” &
Round Robin CD.
3. Access to LIVE WEEKLY Coaching calls where you can
participate and get your questioned answered in real time.
4. 100% FULL Access to the private FHC ELITE Coaching Website
and FHC Knowledgebase™. Complete access to all tools, deal
analyzers, calculators and more!
5. License to use FHC’s Proven Direct Response Marketing
campaigns.
6. Personal one-on-one Coaching calls with Claude throughout
the year! NEVER get stumped on a deal again! These calls are
priceless—potentially worth $100,000.00 on any given deal.
Claude’s hourly consultation rate is $3,500.00/hr.
7. Three Day Private Coaching ONLY Meeting with Ryan, Angie
and Claude.
8. UNLIMITED email access to Angie and Claude through the
FHC Knowledgebase™. Your questions answered personally!
9. Team Building, Business Organization and Implementation
with Ken Glickman.
10. Business & Accounting Systems and Training for
Entrepreneurs with Ken Glickman.
11. The 7 Day Auction Swipe File Manual.
12. On-site Deed Package Training Manual.
After three days of intense teaching at one of their boot
camps, Ryan Tewis and the Financial Health Coach team
invite attendees to participate in an intense, one-year
coaching program for an investment of $25,000.00.
15
april 2008
CONTINUED FROM PAGE 15
Playing
to Your
Strengths
Accelerates
Success
Ryan Tewis and his two partners
have built a real estate and
coaching business by focusing
on their individual strengths
and creating three departments
to divide the work.
The Deed Acquisition
Department
Ryan is the marketing guy who
fills the funnel. He connects
with the homeowner in
foreclosure and gets the deal.
The Short-Sale
Department
Ryan’s father-in-law, Claude
Whited, is in charge of
connecting with the foreclosing
lenders and negotiating the
short-sale (discount on the
loan).
The Property Sales
Department
Ryan’s wife, Angie, is in charge
of marketing and selling the
properties on the back end.
“We structured it that way,
so we could all focus on our
unique abilities and things
we enjoy,” Ryan explains. “I
love selling and marketing,
but Claude will fall asleep in a
marketing meeting.”
“When we fill our funnel with new
people who get the free package, we
have a system in place to convert them
into seminar attendees”
place to convert them into seminar
attendees, so I can fill my seminars
on remote control, from the comfort
of home, instead of having to hit the
seminar circuit every week and be
away from family.”
Something that Ryan always says
yes to is time for himself and his
family. His typical day begins at 7:00
a.m., when he and his wife get their
children ready for school. “We drop
them off at 8:00 a.m., and then we
do yoga from 8:15 to 9:15 a.m. We
usually ‘work’ till 5:00 p.m., but we
also get in the gym for 90 minutes
in the afternoon,” he says. “When
we first started the business, we
didn’t always cut our workday off at
5:00 p.m., but now we do, no matter
what. It helps that I have six fulltime employees and two partners.
I’m the leader of the parade. I’m the
big-picture guy with the vision, and
I keep all of our projects moving
forward. And I’ve structured things,
so I am focusing primarily on my
unique abilities. That way, at the
end of the day, I can go home feeling
energized, not worn out. My time
is flexible enough to take time off
for my kids—or to cut the day short
whenever I want to escape on my
boat (which is actually quite often).”
Joint Venture
Opportunities
Ryan and his partners like to set up
joint marketing arrangements with
niche info-marketers who have solid
relationships with their lists. “Our
joint marketing (JM) partners let
their clients know this free package is
available and drive them to a special
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
16
website. That’s something that has
worked really well for us. We create a
separate, customized website for each
joint marketing partner and buy them
a customized URL with their name
in it. When they offer the package to
their list, there is an endorsement
lift letter from them at the top, with
their picture and so forth, so their
customers feel like this truly is an
exclusive offer just for them,” Ryan
explains. “The JM partner receives
50 percent of the tuition for each
customer who converts to a seminar
attendee. “At $2,500.00 to $5,000.00
per sale, we send our partners very
nice size checks,” he says.
For details on setting up a
joint marketing arrangement
with Ryan, go to www.
AmazingPreForeclosureSecrets.com.
www.Info-Marketing.org
More on the Web
The complete audio of
Ryan Tewis’s Financial
Health Coach’s front-end
marketing package is
available for you to
listen to online or
to download.
april 2008
Info-marketing industry calendar
Starting April 2, 2008, for 10 weeks
Wednesdays from 9:00-10:30 a.m., PDT
Virtual Team Building TeleBootcamp
www.VirtualTeamBuildingTeleBootcamp.com
June 5-8, 2008 • Orlando, Fla.
Options University 2nd Annual
Investor Superconference
www.OptionsUniversity.com
May 7-8, 2008 • Ottawa, Canada
Powerhouse Sales Seminar and
Networking Event
www.EngageSellingEvent.com
June 25-28, 2008 • Myrtle Beach, S.C.
Ron LeGrand’s Information
and Internet Marketing School
(Other date: Sept. 10-13 • Los Angeles, Calif.)
www.RonLeGrand.com
May 13-14, 2008
Alexandria Brown’s Platinum
Mastermind Meeting
www.AlexandriaBrown.com
September 17-21, 2008 • Los Angeles, Calif.
Ron LeGrand’s Customer
Appreciation Celebration
www.RonLeGrand.com
May 31-June 1, 2008 • Denver, Colo.
Karen Schaefer’s Simple Appeal 2-Day
Staging & Design Event Workshop
(Other date: Oct. 25-26 • Tampa, Fla.)
[email protected]
All members of the Information Marketing Association are welcome
to include items in the Info-marketing Industry Calendar. Send us a
fax at 850/222-6002 including the dates, company name, meeting
name, location and call to action for more information.
FREE 10-Part Online Video Seminar Reveals!
10 Secrets of Increasing Online
Conversion Even the Gurus Don’t Know
This video tells you how you can ...
Create trust with your visitors—and make more
sales
Humanize your website—so your visitors aren’t
skeptical about buying from you
Connect with potential buyers in real time—and
increase your online conversions
Quickly identify buyers—without scaring them away
Fine-tune your website—to remove the “roadblocks” from your sales process
The Secret to Online Sales Conversion
The real secret to online conversion is to shift away from trying to “make the sale”
to creating trust with your visitors, so they’ll tell you the truth about what’s on their
minds.
Let me say that again...
To grow your conversion rate, you need to be open to adopting a new mindset that
shifts your thinking away from “selling” your visitors and toward connecting with
them, so they trust you and tell you exactly what problems they’re trying to solve. How
do you do that? By talking with them—and the easiest and most effective way to talk
on the Internet is through live chat.
Add the human touch to your website and dramatically increase the number of leads
you receive and the number of sales you make from your site. You are already spending money on sending customers to your site; convert more traffic and earn a greater
return on your marketing investments.
Visit www.ChatWise.com to learn the 10 secrets now!
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
17
april 2008
compliance
Ensuring Your Testimonials
Comply With the Law
by Nick Nanton, Esq.
Testimonials are an effective way to build credibility for any type of advertising
that you do.
T
estimonials and endorsements
are becoming more important
today in our online world,
where customers are used to going
to forums and other places on
the Internet to find third-party
verification about the company they
wish to deal with.
While testimonials are effective,
there are growing attempts to
regulate them. The regulation of
testimonials and other types of
advertising comes under the Federal
Trade Commission’s rules and
regulations on the federal level. Most
states have adopted what are referred
to as “little FTC” laws, and those
laws cover the individual states.
The most recent guidelines
supplied by the FTC regarding
testimonials or endorsements in
advertising can be summed up as
follows:
Endorsements must accurately
reflect the honest opinion of the
quoted source, and must also be
truthful in an objective sense.
Celebrities need not disclose that
they have been paid, but if they
have an ownership interest in the
product, they assume some extra
responsibility to check claims
beforehand. Expert endorsers
must, in fact, have some
expertise in the area claimed. An
advertiser may not misrepresent
the source or substance of any
endorsement, which means you
cannot use testimonials that
were not actually given by the
person named.
Additionally, in the case of ordinary
customers, you must disclose if there
is any compensation being paid to
individuals for their testimonials.
Some of the laws governing
testimonials and the cases that back
them up are certainly commonsense.
For instance, one of the rules is that
an advertiser may not misrepresent
the source or substance of any
endorsement. This means that you
cannot use a testimonial that was
not actually given by the person
named. Another rule is that you can’t
use a statement made by a person if
that statement would be considered
untrue. As you might suspect, an
advertiser is always responsible for
the truth of the claims made by the
person giving the testimonial.
Many of the cases about
testimonials involve celebrities.
The FTC notes that the celebrity’s
testimonial or endorsement gets
a lot more attention than that of a
non-famous individual, so the FTC
should pay closer attention to what
the celebrity says. It’s interesting that
the FTC does not require celebrities
to disclose that they are getting paid
for their testimonials. The reason
is based on a court’s opinion that
basically said, “Most people would
not be gullible enough to assume
the famous person would give a free
testimonial in the first place.” The
result of that opinion is, as long as
the celebrity expresses an honest
opinion and it is also factually
supported, then there is no liability
for not disclosing the payment.
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
18
On the other hand, if the celebrity
has more of a financial interest
in the business itself, as opposed
to a one-time payment, then the
celebrity takes on a higher level of
responsibility for the testimonial he
is giving. In this case, such a close
connection of owning the company
or sharing in the direct revenues of
the sale has to be disclosed. If these
disclosures are not made, then the
celebrity may become personally
liable for his statements, just like any
other advertiser.
The FTC and the states’ “little
FTC” laws impose a stronger
standard on an individual consumer
who makes statements on behalf
of an advertiser. As previously
noted, any compensation paid
must be disclosed, but in addition,
the consumer’s testimonial has
to reflect the actual experience of
the individual in normal use of
the product or service, unless a
disclosure is made to the contrary.
Outdated testimonials can also be
considered misleading, although
there isn’t a specific time period
given for what is considered
outdated. Old testimonials are
something any advertiser should
be cognizant of, and all advertisers
should create a plan to update
testimonials on a periodic basis.
The most common testimonial
given by consumers is where they
promote a product or a service based
on their own personal use. The FTC
has challenged this many times in
the case of infomercials, where a
april 2008
testimonial does not reflect the typical
or ordinary experience of users.
Even though the testimonial could
be completely truthful, the FTC will
consider it deceptive if you use it
in the context of your marketing as
the results everyone receives from
your products. It’s best to include
testimonials with extraordinary
results as well as some with average
results to provide context. It is fine
to tell potential buyers about a great
result, but you must be careful that
you portray it as a remarkable case,
not the average expectation. In
other words, does the testimonial
accurately reflect what most of the
buyers of your product or service
experience? If it does not, then the
FTC will likely say the testimonial
was deceptive based on the context
of actual use.
Another problem area for
testimonials is when the
endorsement or testimonial is given
by an organization or an association.
If the organization or association is
independent of the company selling
the product, then there is likely to
be little problem, so long as the
testimonial is factual. However,
when the association was created
or controlled by the producer of the
advertisement, then the FTC will
generally hold that the testimonial or
endorsement is misleading.
From a practical position, one
thing that all advertisers should do
is to make sure that the individual
providing the testimonial signs off on
the testimonial and the advertiser’s
right to use it. A release stating that
the individual has not been paid
for the testimonial should also be
included in the agreement between
the advertiser and the provider of the
testimonial. It is amazing the lack
of memory some people can have
regarding testimonials they have
given in the past, particularly when
the provider of the testimonial later
believes there is an opportunity to
get some money from the advertiser
for having used the testimonial in
support of a product.
Signed releases are also important
because they can be shown as proof
when there is an investigation by a
regulatory agency. It is always better
to have a file showing the signed
releases if an investigation occurs.
Not only do the releases back up
what the individuals said, but they
go a long way with the regulators to
show that the advertiser is taking
additional steps to ensure the
accuracy of the testimonials given.
Proper documentation and files are
always important in a regulatory
investigation and can help regulators
come to a successful conclusion for
the advertiser.
In summary, it is important
for everyone to understand the
importance of using testimonials
to support a product or a service
offered. On the other hand, it is
equally important to understand
that the use of those testimonials
will bring scrutiny from regulatory
agencies that might be concerned
about what is being said. The best
procedure with regard to all uses
of testimonials is to make sure that
what is being said is an accurate
reflection of the individual’s
experience, that it is a reasonably
typical experience of others who use
the product, that there are no hidden
payments and that the testimonial is
documented by written disclosures,
releases and signatures of the person
giving the testimonial.
Dicks & Nanton PA: The Business Growth
Lawyers® is a boutique law firm dedicated
to building businesses and brands. J.W.
Dicks, Esq., and Nick Nanton, Esq.,
attorneys by trade and entrepreneurs
by choice, are known for helping their
clients make money with creative business
strategies and saving them money by
structuring protective devices that preserve
business and personal assets. For more
information about Dicks & Nanton PA,
visit www.TheBusinessGrowthLawyers.com.
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
19
Testimonials
Checklist
Here are best practices for the
testimonials you use within
your marketing materials:
•
If you have a reason to
believe a testimonial is
not true, don’t use it, no
matter how flattering it is.
•
Rotate in new testimonials
and retire older ones.
There are no guidelines to
define old, but you need
to keep your testimonials
up-to-date.
•
Disclose any payments to
customers who give you
testimonials.
•
Make sure the testimonials
you use reflect the
typical experiences your
customers have with your
products.
•
Document each
testimonial with the
date and the customer’s
signature giving you
permission to use it.
www.Info-Marketing.org
Image: Check
Outon
IMAthe
Member
Site
More
Web
Logo
Nothing
replaces
having an
attorney
Nothing
replaces
having
to create
forms
for
you;
however,
an attorney to create
here are two sample testimonial
forms
for you;
forms
to review:
a briefhowever,
form and a
more
elaborate
form.
here
are two
sample
testimonial forms to
review: a brief form
and a more
elaborate
form.
april 2008
JOINT-VENTURE OPPORTUNITIES
It’s Time for You to “Cash In” BIG
On Your “Toll Booth” Position …
Editor’s Note: The following are joint venture opportunities available with other Information Marketing Association members. The IMA
provides this information as a FREE service to our members and does not endorse or approve any opportunity. Content is edited for space
only. If you would like to submit a joint venture opportunity for the next IMA newsletter, you are welcome to email it to [email protected] A complete joint venture opportunity listing is available on the member site at http://Members.Info-Marketing.org.
I
Start a Home Business
have a 98-page workbook about
starting a home business or any
small business. It is laid out in a
way that creates a working business
plan that evaluates and incorporates
the basic success principles of
business. It is for anyone thinking
about a home business, starting
one or looking to improve one. It is
D
Grow Online Databases Faster
aniel Levis is available as a
teleseminar guest for infomarketers with subscribers
interested in growing their online
customer and prospect databases
faster. Treat your members to 75
minutes of incredibly valuable
content, and earn juicy commissions
from Daniel’s exclusive product
offers. He is also open to potentially
C
promoting your offering to his
40,000-plus member online
database, comprised primarily of
online info-marketers, copywriters
and captive sales and marketing
professionals. Contact Daniel at
705/424-3232 or [email protected]
Sympatico.ca. Visit Daniel online at
www.DanielLevis.com.
E-Myth Type Solutions
omplete Marketing Systems
specializes in strategic
planning, implementation and
execution of business and marketing
systems for information marketers,
entrepreneurs and coaches. For more
I
generic, not trying to get them into
any specific business. I am looking
for associates to revenue share in the
sale of the book or for a joint venture
with someone who can facilitate
sales in large volumes. You can see
my website at www.SureHitGuide.
com or contact me, Jim Flamm, at
[email protected]
information or to schedule your
free 21-minute business building
strategy session, call Diane Conklin
at 321/449-1151 or go to www.
CompleteMarketingSystems.com.
Business Startup Workbook
have a 98-page workbook about
starting a home business or any
small business. It is laid out in a
way that creates a working business
plan that evaluates and incorporates
the basic success principles of
business. It is for anyone thinking
about starting or improving a home
business. I am looking for associates
to revenue share in the sale of the
book or for a joint venture with
someone who can facilitate sales in
large volumes. See my website at
www.SureHitGuide.com or contact
me at [email protected]
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
20
Virtual Teams
D
oes your network want to
make more money with
less time spent on their
businesses? Have they toyed around
with hiring employees, managers
and even VA’s, but it just isn’t
working? Melanie Benson Strick’s
Virtual Team Building Tele-Bootcamp
starts April 2, and we are booking
interviews with experts who have an
entrepreneurial community greater
than 5,000 who would like $500.00
for each referral. Contact Ann at
818/530-4884, ext. 2, to see if this JV
is a good fit for you.
Healthy Split on
Seminars
L
ooking for JV on monthly
teleseminar “Karen Schaefer’s
Simple Appeal 5-Step System
to Selling Properties in Half Time at
Full Market Value (even in a troubled
Real Estate Market).” Also seeking
JV on two-day workshop “Karen
Schaefer’s Simple Appeal 2-Day
Staging & Design Event Workshop”
(May 31-June 1 and Oct. 25-26). Offer
a healthy split on both programs.
Retail prices: Two-day workshop is
$1,997.00, and the teleseminar is
$997.00, plus future affiliate link.
Email [email protected]
april 2008
For information on advertising in the Marketplace, contact Scott at [email protected] or phone 850/222-6000.
Want to Convert Your
Ideas into a Steady
Income Stream?
West Press can
make it happen.
+
=
$
For the past 10 years, West Press has worked
with the best in the industry, helping infomarketers and their customers succeed.
Not a regular printer or mail house–our
dedicated Info-Marketing Department puts
experienced staff to work for you. Everything
from newsletters to turnkey products, West Press
gives you as much or as little help as you need–
design, print and mail all under one roof.
With our 100% guarantee, feel confident entering
into a relationship with the “info-marketers’
best kept secret”.
For a FREE copy of our Information Marketing
DVD, contact us at:
888.637.0337
[email protected]
www.westpress.com
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
21
april 2008
PRESIDENT’S REPORT
Get Obamomentum
for Your Info-Business
When the present becomes unbearable, the only hope
is a better future. It is in the pursuit of a better future
that people become happy.
A
llow me to preface this
article with a note that I’m
a Republican and have no
intention of voting for Barack Obama.
However, the way he is running his
campaign has a lot to teach us about
information marketing. Also, while
the rest of this newsletter is based
upon proven techniques that infomarketers have used, my column
is based upon my perspective. This
article in particular is my observations
and opinions. It’s meant to raise more
questions for you than to provide
answers. It’s only by asking tough
questions that we are able to generate
breakthrough results.
charisma of a rock star. Thousands
come out to see him and chant,
“Obama, Obama.”
Obama’s campaign slogan is
“change.” Ordinarily, change is
very scary to people. Therefore,
Barack has to make the present
seem so completely unbearable that
voters will accept change as the
solution. Here is an excerpt from his
42-minute speech given January 31 in
Arizona:
I believe in such a thing as being too
late. That hour is almost upon us.
We are in a defining moment of our
history. Our nation is at war. Our
planet is at peril. The dream that so
many generations have fought for feels
like it is slowly slipping away. ... We
can’t wait to fix the broken healthcare
system. We cannot wait to fix our
schools. We cannot wait to end global
warming. We cannot wait to bring
this war in Iraq to a close. We cannot
wait. So, I decided to run, recognizing
the size of our challenges outstripped
the capacity of a broken two-party
system. I was betting that people were
hungry for something new.
While I don’t agree with Barack
Obama’s messages, I have been
studying dozens of his speeches. I’ve
had several transcribed and added to
my swipe file. He’s extremely smart
about creating his message in a way
that inspires support.
The low point of his campaign
was in South Carolina. He suffered a
surprising upset in New Hampshire,
and then several debates with John
Edwards and Hillary Clinton wore
him down to the point where he got
into a nasty war of words with Hillary
on the eve of the South Carolina
primary. Hillary and Barack trading
insults was replayed thousands of
times in the weeks after that debate.
Barack learned from that mistake.
Barack cannot match Hillary on
her knowledge of issues. In a debate
environment, he looks young and
inexperienced. However, in rallies
with up to 15,000 people, he has the
Obama has been successful because
he’s been able to stir frustration with
the present. Even though America
is enjoying the greatest period of
prosperity of any civilization in the
world, today or in history, his speech
points to weaknesses, and he appeals
to guilty feelings that many people
have about their prosperity. Most
of all, he makes the present seem
completely unacceptable. In order
for someone to focus on the future,
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
22
you have to make the present appear
to be unbearable. That way you will
be willing to endure anything in the
present to fulfill the dream of the
future.
Candidates that sell hope win.
Bill Clinton presented the hope of
compassion over “harsh” policies of
self-reliance, stating, “I still believe in
a place called Hope.” George W. Bush
sold the hope of family values; in his
second election, he sold national pride
and the spread of democracy around
the world as opposed to isolationism.
Now, Barack is selling the hope of
change. It’s amazing how popular
Barack has become and how much
money he has raised in spite of the
fact that he has never defined what he
proposes the nation will look like after
he has implemented “change.”
When individuals are frustrated
with their present circumstances,
they are willing to throw it away
to create a better future. When the
present becomes unbearable, the only
hope is a better future. In fact, their
fight to create a better future creates
a high self-confidence. It is in the
pursuit of a better future that people
become happy.
Another important aspect of
Barack’s campaign is that he uses
language that tells people that they
can unify into a campaign of hope
by supporting his candidacy. Here is
a quote from his victory speech in
Chicago on Super-Tuesday, February 5:
We are more than a collection of
red states and blue states; we are
april 2008
Hillary Clinton’s campaign website has more
than 38 different links to click on. It even
includes a “5 Things You Can Do” box, with the
5th item being “Contribute.” Hillary supporters
can spend hours on this site learning about
Hillary—without getting around to making a
contribution.
a collection of the United States of
America.
Since Obama has kept to his
message and stayed away from the
debates, he has surged ahead. The
so-called “obamomentum” is due to
a message consisting of three things:
change, hope and unity. Aren’t these
the three things that all marketing is
about? From the Nike swoosh to your
info-marketing business, the message
boils down to these three things.
Barack Obama’s website has only two links. One
is to make a contribution, and the other is to
match someone else’s contribution. Both of these
choices drive visitors to make a contribution.
Barack’s fund-raising success through this
simple site has broken all records.
forceful words when describing the
deficiencies of the present. Not only
are people investing their money in
your program, they are deciding to
change their way of life. They’ll only
do it if they believe in the hope of a
future that’s better than their present
circumstances.
To convince someone to invest in
your product or to participate in your
program, you must convince them to
change. They have to give up their
current habits and embrace a new
approach.
Unity: a lot of info-marketers miss
this. A community will be formed
whether or not you are the one to
create it. Your new members want
to belong; they want to feel like they
are part of something bigger than
themselves. If you are growing the
industry, protecting consumers or
creating a new way of doing business,
state it in terms of a “movement.”
For someone to embrace change,
they have to be disgusted with
their present circumstances. Either
because they were already disgusted
or they became disgusted after
someone pointed out deficiencies.
Just like Obama, you must use
Consider Nike: Change: exercise
and sweating are good and fun;
Hope: you can win, succeed and get
fit; and Unity: with the swoosh, you
can join a group of likeminded people
who are sweating together. Just like
“obamomentum” isn’t about the
INFORMATION MARKETING INSIDERS’ JOURNAL
23
candidate, Nike isn’t about the shoe;
it’s a message about change, hope
and unity.
Thousands of people are packing
stadiums to hear this message;
millions are donating money through
his website. The message works,
and Obama proves there are a lot
of people interested in it right now.
How are you going to implement it
within your business?
The answer to that question is
worth hundreds of thousands of
dollars to you. Next month, my
simple four-part blueprint for
operating a successful info-business.
Post your info-marketing ideas or
reaction to this article on the IMA
membership site, “Obamomentum
for Info-Marketers” post in the
Marketing discussion forum.
april 2008
I’m REVEALING the closely guarded
SECRETS I use to give info-marketers
INSTANT CREDIBILITY, to build
NEW CUSTOMER acquisition
programs and to create NEW
MILLION-DOLLAR BUSINESSES.
For two years, I’ve been personally
building ASSOCIATIONS for infomarketers. Now, I reveal all of
the secrets I’ve uncovered to help
info-marketers achieve the same
remarkable results by creating their
own ASSOCIATIONS.
Up until today, this information has
been available only by hiring me
through my $38,000.00 consulting
arrangement. Meanwhile, several
people have told me they want to
implement my secrets themselves, but they have questions about getting
member benefits or how to structure their ASSOCIATIONS to make sure they
get the most benefits from their own efforts.
Preview Seminar
Via YouTube Videos
The Associations for InfoMarketers’ Home Study
Course is delivered to you with
a printed 602-page manual,
DVD videos and mp3 audios.
However, you can preview over
30 minutes of the seminar via
YouTube.com videos. Visit
www.AssociationsForInfo
Marketers.com to watch 6
different segments of the
seminar and get an insider’s
peek at this home study course:
1. Introduction and welcome to the
seminar
2. Successful association marketing
examples
I have created a special report, available at www.AssociationsForInfoMarketers.
com, to share the secrets of how ASSOCIATION marketing works and to give
you a special invitation. Please note, this report talks about a very specific
type of information marketing that may not apply to you. Even if it doesn’t
apply, you should find it interesting to read about what some info-marketers
are doing. Within the Info-Marketing Insiders’ Journal, I focus on more typical
information marketing approaches used by a lot of info-marketers; in this
report, you’ll get to see some of the strategies that a small handful of successful
marketers are using to build successful businesses.
3. Details of a “decent” association
marketing example and how to
improve it
This isn’t a strategy I invented. Associations date back to 1782 in England.
During my career, I’ve seen hundreds of private businesspeople create new
associations. However, no one has done more than I have to perfect this
process, expand the income opportunities and help info-marketers make money.
6. An example of a certification
program any info-marketer can
duplicate in his or her niche
Robert Skrob
President, Information Marketing Association
4. A universal marketing lesson
from a political campaign fundraising letter
5. What smart associations do that
keep customers for life and that
info-marketers should duplicate
Watch all of these YouTube.com
sample videos, over 30 minutes
of the seminar, by visiting
www.AssociationsForInfo
Marketers.com.
For sample videos from the seminar and more information
about association information marketing, visit
www.AssociationsForInfoMarketers.com.