Writing to Sell in Eight Steps

How to write an effective sales brochure, web page, sales letter, or presentation

Capturing your reader’s attention and persuading them to buy or take a desired action is a craft. Like any craft, you can learn a lot from the pros. Fortunately for you, effective sales writing is all around you… take a look at some well-respected company websites and other communications for some great examples. Alright, looking at examples of what others have done can provide some inspiration and ideas, but what about your situation? How will you sell your product or service?

A good structure will help guide you through your own writing process. There will typically be several steps along the path from your opening headline to your call for action and you may lose your reader anywhere along the path. The following steps may be incorporated into a brochure, a blog, an email, a sales letter, or a presentation. Depending on your situation you may not use all of the following steps, but these are time-tested elements to consider as you sit down to write.

Step 1 – The Headline

You can draw the reader in or lose them with your headline. Choose your words carefully!

Consider using a “How To” headline. Most of your readers will be more interested in learning how to solve a problem or learning to do something as opposed to reading about your product or service. Note that the title to this article is really a “How To” headline. Some examples follow:

– Build a Shed This Weekend

– How To Turn Your Junk Into Cash

– Learn To Design, Build, and Sell Your Own Smartphone App

Try to keep the headline short and sweet. If you need to elaborate, consider adding a Sub-headline. For example, Turn Your Junk Into Cash can be followed up with: Clean Out Your Closets and Sell Your Stuff Online. Ditch That Expensive Phone Bill can be followed up with: No contract, you only pay for what you use. The Headline should grab the reader’s attention. The Sub-headline should reel them in.

Step 2 – The Opener

OK – you’ve got your reader this far. Next, show them that you understand their problem and that your product or service can solve it.

Free up your weekends, let us take care of all your yard work and landscaping projects this summer.

Be sure to demonstrate that your product or service will make the reader’s life easier. People are looking for hassle-free, quick, and easy solutions to their problems. In addition to text, a video or pictures can be very effective in showing how easy something can be.

Step 3 – Future Vision

Help your reader see the future – a better future. A simple way to help your reader see the future is to ask them to Imagine… [fill in the blank to your future vision here!]

Help your reader imagine what their world will be like after their problem has been solved. This is another opportunity to use visuals – videos or some beautiful “after” pictures can effectively show a future vision. A sparkling clean window, a salon chair spinning around to reveal a smiling young man with a sharp-looking new haircut, a smiling woman getting the keys to her shiny new car. You get the idea.

Step 4 – Demonstrate Credibility

Alright, now you have shown your reader a vision for a better future. But wait, why should your reader trust you, how are you qualified, and why should your reader use you vs. someone else?

A few examples of how to show that you are credible include:

– Qualifications and Credentials: Are you a PhD, a CPA, an Award-Winning Chef? Tell your reader what your qualifications and credentials are to demonstrate credibility.

– Endorsements and Testimonials: An endorsement from a respected colleague or a testimonial from a happy customer can go a long way to build credibility.

– Statistics: Numbers or charts can be used effectively demonstrate credibility. Hey, if 4 out of 5 dentists recommend… you remember that one, don’t you?

– A powerful personal story can be used to show how you did it.

Step 5 – Sell The Benefits

Next, explain the benefits of your product or service to your reader in a few key points. There is not a magic number, but more than five is probably too many in most cases. This part of your document should stand out. Use indentation, bold text, bullet points, or some other way to highlight the key benefits of your product or service and draw the reader’s eye to these key points. This is a good place to break things up a bit. You don’t want your reader to miss the benefits of your product or service. You want to ensure the reader sees and processes the benefits of your product or service.

Always remember that you should sell the benefits and results of your product or service, not the product or service itself. It’s more effective to sell a beautiful green lawn rather than a sack of fertilizer. It’s better to sell the feeling of owning your dream home than to sell a mortgage at 4.2%, even if 4.2% is a great rate.

Step 6 – Prove It

OK, I can imagine what your product will do for me, I see that you are credible, I understand the benefits of your product, but I want to see Proof that your product will work!

Anyone that has been to a the State Fair or watched an infomercial has seen the Prove It presentation. The vacuum that is so powerful that it sucks up all the pet hair or can hold a bowling ball, the amazing non-stick pan that cooks your eggs to perfection, the super-sharp knife that can cut through a tin can and then slice a tomato with ease, the amazing detergent that gets out the toughest grass stain, etc.

You can prove it with data, statistics, or reputable sources that back your claims. Celebrity or expert endorsements, expert testimonies, and large numbers of people on the bandwagon are all ways to prove your claims. Proving with writing is good, but this is another great place for visuals. If your reader can see before and after photos or a video showing an amazing transformation you can leverage the famous saying: a picture is worth a thousand words.

Step 7 – The Offer

Here is where the “deal” is explained. How much money for your product or service should be explained here. You should answer all the expected questions that the reader will have… Clearly answer questions like: How much money? When will I get the product or service? How can I pay? How big? How heavy?, etc.

Everyone likes a deal. So, you may consider offering a discount for acting early, a discount for buying more than one, a rebate for recommending a friend, and so forth. Providing a discount or bonus for acting early can be a powerful way to boost sales for some products and services. Urgency can also be created by having a limited number of products available for sale, a limited number of seats for a concert, etc. Be careful though, use legitimate urgency triggers or you may risk losing credibility as well as the sale.

Another way to sweeten the offer is to take risk off the table for the customer. Some ways that you can do this include a money-back guarantee, a free sample, or a free trial period.

Step 8 – Call To Action

Don’t forget the call to action. This is how you close the deal. Tell your reader what you want them to do. Tell them clearly and make it simple.

– Call this phone number to order

– Click this button to order

– Call this number for a free in-home demonstration.

There you have it – eight steps to write your sales piece. You don’t need to include all these elements for each sales document that you write. However, this is a useful structure and set of steps to work through as you consider important elements of your sales document.

Marketing Messages: Make People Feel, Not Think

I’ve seen organizations make a lot of mistakes in marketing communications, but one looms over all of them as the most common with the greatest impact. It’s the mistaken belief that the best way to motivate people to a course of action is to make them think.

The most successful marketers and salespeople know better. They realize there’s a far more effective way to get people to buy your product, use your service, support your cause, or even simply listen more closely to your pitch: you want to make them feel.

You see, the people who believe that getting others to think are working from a flawed assumption. They believe human beings are rational animals. They believe we make decisions based primarily upon a long list of facts. They believe we compare various facts and come to the most logical conclusions, and then make our choices accordingly.

If that were the case, nearly every facet of our marketplace would come to a crashing halt. Only a handful of automakers would survive, and they’d offer only a few models. Most restaurants would go out of business. The entire fashion industry would collapse. The value of real estate would plummet. Many companies would no longer have a reason to exist.

The simple fact is that humans are emotional animals, and our decisions are driven primarily by our emotional responses. Oh, we’ll come up with a lengthy list of rational reasons to explain those decisions, but that’s only after our emotions have pointed us in a direction.

The best example of how this works is how people buy cars. They’re drawn to a particular model by the way it looks, the way they believe they’ll appear behind the wheel, how they believe others will feel about their purchase, and similar factors. And then, once their emotional side has settled on that shiny sedan, they cite rational reasons to justify the decision. It has superior engineering. The handling is crisp. It’s a comfortable ride. It maintains its value longer than other models.

If I asked you why you bought the car you drive, those are the kinds of answers you’d offer. You’d deny that you ever envisioned yourself being admired by some attractive individual as you motored down the highway on a warm spring day, but you did. You did similar things when you bought your home and what you’re wearing as you read this. Your favorite bourbon may be mighty tasty, but the first time you picked up a bottle, your emotions were doing the heavy lifting.

Now, I’m not taking anyone to task for being an emotional animal. It’s who we are, as much a part of our makeup as the flight-or-fight response that’s at the heart of what we call stress. What I’m saying is that we need to remember that whenever we seek to communicate with humans — and yes, that includes CEOs, accountants, attorneys, network administrators, and even engineers — they’re emotional animals.

Wait, you say. That may apply to consumer behavior, but our company operates in the business-to-business world, where rational decisions prevail. We manufacture veeblefetzers and our customers buy them because they have the right specifications. That, to put it politely, is the southbound product of a northbound steer.

Your customers buy your product or service rather than someone else’s because you’ve managed to address some emotional need. I engage your audit services because I don’t want to make a mistake that will bring the IRS to my doorstep. I hired your law firm because I know its name intimidates my adversaries. And I bank with you because that teller treats me like I’m someone special. Confidence, pride, gratitude, serenity, joy, contentment — those and many others are the factors our emotional sides seek.

If you’re selling a commodity, yes, price is a key motivator — but I’ll wager that your customer’s overriding decision was based on confidence in how you do business. You deliver on time, so I don’t have to worry about missing deadlines and being yelled at.

Don’t focus on making people think your company or your product is better. Instead, create messages that target emotional factors. Ask yourself what makes your customers feel fear or discomfort, and find your message in how you keep that from happening. Instead of talking about your production engineering, emphasize that customers won’t have to worry about downtime due to component failure.

Untold Benefits Of Investing In Promotional Gifts

Promotion is not as easy as it seems and doing it right is not a cakewalk at all. You need to think something new every time to make your very first and lasting impression on the clients. It is a clever form of publicity that helps you gain client loyalty and their words for life. Have you invested the right amount of time and money in your marketing activities? No, why? Don’t have a budget to spend on expensive marketing activities? Well, if this is the main reason you are not able to take the benefit of marketing, then investing in Promotional Gifts is the right solution for you. Yes, whether you accept the fact or not, but it has the power to ensure your brand recognition like never before. Take a look at some of its benefits that no one told you about.

  • Help To Break The Ice: Promotional Gifts are undoubtedly the best way to break the ice between you and your customers. It makes it easier for you to initiate the communication that further proves to be very helpful for your business.
  • Speak For Your Actions: Promotional Gifts are known to tell an untold story of your actions. No matter, how many times you say that your customers are important for you, it doesn’t make a change, but when you justify it in your actions, so, it did make a change.
  • Cost You Lesser Than You Think: Investing in promotional gifts doesn’t require a huge budget. You can easily buy some practical and cool items and customize them with your company name or logo before giving to your clients without even breaking the banks. Additionally, it has a larger impact on a client’s mind than any other form of marketing.

These may help more and more people aware of your business, which further increases your sales and profits. So, roll up your sleeves and get ready to go ahead in the journey where competition is at its peak and you have to make your lasting impression on the forefront of your clients. Now the question is what items one can use as promotional gifts, so, it won’t hurt anyone’s sentiments? So, let’s have a look.

A promotional gift can be anything, from the stationary products, bags, business items, office accessories to customize clothing. But make sure, before you invest in the one; keep your brand image in your mind, as it’ll help you make a right choice.

4 Reasons Why In-Person Event Marketing Is Essential

As the online space grows ever more crowded, in-person events are becoming more essential than ever. They offer the valuable opportunity to speak directly to your target audience and form in-person connections with them. At an in-person event, you can get immediate feedback and control the customer experience in a unique way. This is why event marketing is an essential element of your marketing mix.

You Build an Emotional Connection

People come to your event because they’re interested in what you have to offer. Basically, they’re self-selected as the best possible audience to receive your brand message and ultimately buy your product or service. Instead of talking to the internet at large or every reader of a newspaper or the drivers going by on the highway, you’re speaking directly to your target demographic.

You can use that opportunity to build an in-person connection that feels more immediate and personal than other forms of marketing. In-person events build an emotional connection with attendees, as Howard Givner explained in an article from Entrepreneur.

Givenr says that companies can leverage the connection guests built at an event, cultivating their emotional connection into an ongoing relationship.

Even if attendees don’t buy right away, they’ve become warm leads, primed for a sale.

You Get Immediate Feedback

At an in-person event, you have an ideal opportunity to get immediate feedback on your product or service. No need for focus groups or emailed customer surveys. Guests can try your product in real-time. You can address their questions right away.

This give and take helps you break down barriers to the sale and show potential customers exactly why they need your product or service.

And the value extends far beyond the end of the event. You can use the feedback, questions and discussion to inform your marketing strategy. For example, you might write a blog based on a question you heard several times or start a new Facebook ad campaign showcasing a feature your attendees were particularly excited about.

You Can Curate the Customer Experience

Consumers are bombarded by advertising and marketing messages all day every day. Experts claim a person sees as many as 10,000 brand messages per day. That’s a lot of competition for your ideal customer’s attention.

At an in-person event, your competitors are left outside. Instead of seeing dozens or hundreds of options, attendees see one, yours. That gives you an uninterrupted platform for evangelizing your product or service.

Event Marketing Works

In the Content Marketing Institute’s 2015 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends survey, event marketing topped the list of effective marketing strategies. And with good reason. According to the EventTrack Content Benchmarking Report, 74% of consumers say they’re more likely to purchase after attending a branded event.

7 Pillars of Marketing Management

Marketing management refers to the process of planning effective marketing strategies, advertising and promoting the products and services, and managing the sales to reach the customers so that the company gains immense profits. The companies thus seek for adept candidates who can serve as marketing managers and take the organizations to the zenith of success. The managers can ensure effectual marketing management by paying heed to these 7 parameters that serve as pillars of marketing:

  1. Branding
    Establishing a brand is what makes any business unique. The products and services offered by the brand should be made catering to the needs of the people. Extensive research should be carried out to understand the needs of the customers and robust strategies should be developed to make the brand for the people.
  2. Visibility of brand
    One of the best strategies for marketing is to spend on promotions. Visibility of the products and services is imperative to reach the intended customers. Promoting the brand both offline and online with oodles of advertisements is the key to reach millions of target customers. The increase of visibility can be ensured by posting online advertisements, social media activities or by banners etc.
  3. Authority
    Businesses that have authority win the trust of the consumers faster. It shows the authenticity of the business and the value it can provide to the customers. An authority cannot be set up overnight but can be built gradually. For building an authority, the companies should have their website and blogs.
  4. Social presence
    This is the modern way of marketing. Being active on social networking sites and updating about company’s new projects, products or brands can spread awareness and lead to growth in the business. Advertising the products on social networking sites can garner a drastic increase in the business. It improves the visibility of the brand.
  5. Campaigning
    Educating the customers about the offerings of the brand can drastically increase the sales. Convincing the buyers that the product will suffice their needs is the best way to enhance sales. Campaigns should be carried out from time to time to advertise the products and services.
  6. Customer services
    Highly responsive customer service will create a good impression of your brand on the customers. A skilled marketing manager knows the importance of customers’ service for their company. A sound customer service tells the customers that why they should buy the same product or other products of the company again. Customer services can be carried forward through E-mails, telephone or by interacting personally with the customers.
  7. Gauging the effectiveness of all the strategies
    This is the last pillar of effectual marketing management. In this step, it is determined whether the business is going on the right track or not. If the sales are not great or the business is not witnessing any growth, then the areas where the marketing strategies lack should be identified. The marketing managers should analyze the effectiveness of the marketing strategies and give proper feedback to the team to make improvements in the major areas.

Defining Your Market

Defining your target market is critical if you plan on any measure of success in your business. A solid foundation for your business requires that one of the first things – if not THE first thing you need to do is to – DEFINE YOUR TARGET MARKET! In laymen’s terms, that means you need to figure out who your typical customer is, and design your marketing to reach those people. If you fail to do so, you’re marketing efforts will be like tumbleweeds – rolling around aimlessly in whatever direction the wind blows them.

Defining Means Being More Specific

There was a time when business owners would say things like “I’m marketing our products/services to people between the ages of 21 and 59.” That’s great if you think every 21 – 59 year old out there will buy from you, but that’s just not reality. These days, age doesn’t mean what it used to. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “60 is the new 40” (or some variation of that). That’s very true today. Generational marketing, defines consumers not just by their ages, but also uses social, economic, demographic and psychological factors, that give marketers a more accurate picture of that target consumer. Generational marketing is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to defining your target market.

6 Other Ways To Define Your Target Market

  1. Look At Your Current Customers: Which one(s) bring in the most business? Why do they buy from you? It’s highly likely that others like them would also benefit from your product/service.
  2. Choose specific demographics: Who has a need for your product/service and who would most likely purchase it. Consider; age, gender, occupation, location, income/educational level, or marital status just to name a few.
  3. Check out your competitors: Who are they marketing to? See if there’s a niche they’ve missed, and target that group.
  4. Check out characteristics: This is also known as “psychographics” in the marketing world. This covers things like; personality, attitudes, interests/hobbies, lifestyles, etc. How will your product/service fit in?
  5. Analyze your product/service: Make a list of every feature of your product/service. Next to each feature, write down the benefit(s) each feature will provide. Once you’ve completed that, make a list of the people/businesses that need what your benefit will fulfill.
  6. Assess your decision: When you’ve defined your target market, ask yourself these questions; Is there a large enough market for my product/service? Will they benefit from and/or see a need for my product/service? Can they afford it? Are they easily accessible? Will I be able to reach them with my message?

Defining your target market is the hard part, but you don’t need to go crazy doing it. Once you have your target market defined, it will be easy to determine what marketing message will resonate with them and what media to use to reach them. Defining your target market will also save you big on marketing dollars while giving you a much better return on those marketing dollars at the same time.

3 Reasons Why the Amish Were Right About Marketing

If I say the word “Amish” to you, what are the images that come to mind?

Perhaps your mind goes to thoughts of horse-drawn carriages, a close-knit community that stays within itself, or no use of modern comforts like electricity or photography. Maybe you think of the clothes Amish people wear or the long hours that they spend working.

Whatever comes to mind, have you ever thought of the Amish as geniuses at marketing? That’s a thought that crosses my mind when I think about the Amish. As you know, the Amish make it a point to stay in their community, and they steer away from so many aspects of modern life. The Amish have also created a reason for those of us who are not Amish to buy their products or visit their communities.

I am a big believer in marketing and think it’s an essential part of business success, and the Amish have lessons to teach the broader business community.

Brand Promise

Even if the Amish wouldn’t say it themselves, there is a specific brand that buying something Amish represents. The Amish are famous for their dedication to extraordinary amounts of work, as much as 80-hour work-weeks. This commitment to work allows them to be great craftspeople. When you buy an Amish product, you know that it wasn’t created in a factory with the use of technology. Amish products are typically done by craftsmen and women who use their hands and tools to make products as they were done a century ago.

Since their products are done by craftsmen who spend the time, the products are well-made. Therefore, when you buy products made by the Amish, you know that the brand promise is one of quality. Even though we live in a world that is light years from how the Amish live, they have remained true to their “brand.” Many communities do not use electricity or electronic and technological tools. They create their products in the same fashion that was always done, and it’s a lesson for entrepreneurs to remain faithful to their values and brand promise.

Doubling Down on their Niche

The Amish understand that the world beyond their communities is strikingly different than what they represent. Every once in a while, you might come across news articles about individuals who decided to leave the community because they want to live in the modern world. However, generally speaking, although some leave the communities and there is probably pressure within the community to “evolve” and advance into the modern world, the Amish also recognize that to maintain their way of life, and their distinction, they have to retain as much of their customs and practices.

In other words, whatever the pressure that Amish communities may feel to modernize and integrate into broader communities beyond the Amish, most Amish groups instead double down. They are true to their values, what they represent and how they want to be viewed by the external world. They understand that they have a particular way of life and most Amish communities choose to double down and stay with their customs as they have been and not what is expected of them. Think about that the next time you have investors or advisors tell you should dilute your product line or the services you offer. Stay true to what you offer and stay in your lane.

Keep Working What Works for the Long-Term

Finally, the Amish have an understanding that their values and beliefs go beyond whatever is the newest trend. Were you aware that Amish farmers tend to have better crops than non-Amish farmers over the long term? How does that happen? The Amish don’t use chemicals, and they grow different types of crops on their lands keeping the soil working and profitable. They think long-term strategy and not short-term gain. They understand they want to keep their land productive for generations and they won’t do anything to harm that idea.

Sometimes entrepreneurs want to chase the next trend or idea, especially in the beginning when they are trying to get their business off the ground. However, the Amish don’t look at the next idea or supposed promise that will make them money. They know what works to keep their land profitable through generations, and they keep working it. If you have a winning idea and you know that there’s a market for it, keep your mind focused on the long-term and not on the short-term.

7 Small Business Marketing Trends You Need to Follow in 2018

The way marketing works are essentially changing day by day because of the absolute volume of people using the internet and the depends on new technologies as well.

Keeping in mind, here I would like to share the 7 Marketing Trends You Need to Follow in 2018 for your small businesses.

1. Email Marketing

Email marketing keeps on to be a vital communications channel to engage with customers and is still an important strategy that every small business should execute. Each and every email that a b2b marketer sends out purposes to generate more qualified leads. It is cost-effective and an affordable.
If you utilize this marketing in the right way, then you can acquire valuable customer or prospects and easily expand your brand awareness. But If your marketing messages aren’t relevant and easily read on mobile devices, you can expect consumers to move on. Because the secret to creating the most valuable email marketing campaigns is to offer relevant information to customers and make mobile friendly as well.

Increase your marketing results with these simple techniques which are given below:

Be Mobile Friendly
If your emails aren’t mobile-friendly, you could be missing out on the opportunity to engage your customers or prospects and drive results.

Use AI Technology
By using an AI, you can execute the most effective email marketing trends and makes emails feel more personal and human.

2. Video Advertising

People don’t have enough time to read a long content posted on the small screen of a Smartphone. So nowadays people tune into videos online. Because they can watch videos anytime and anywhere as well as you can use video content to attract new customers and increase conversion to implant a video on your prospects or customers landing page.

To keep unlock fresh insights, small businesses need to focus on video marketing and you can share videos on Instagram and Facebook along with hashtags to expand your brand reputation and generate new leads. It boosts the open rates as well as click-through rates.

3 .Guest Blogging

Guest blogging is a process of creating educational content and make public it on other valid sites that accept guest posts. It helps you make your site get a much better ranking in SEs and increase your SEO ranking in a commercial way. It becomes the fuel for mounting the quality leads in your pipeline.

If guest blogging is done correctly, then you can get these benefits which are given below:

• Helps you gain traffic and get in front of your audience.
• An essential way to influence other people, whether it’s with regards to their business.
• Will send many different targeted visitors to your business websites.
• You can also get backlinks from high-quality sites.
• Generate brand awareness and ultimately grow your audience.
• Maximize the results that you will receive.

Through guest blogging, you can get the chance to network with a lot of top content writers and bloggers related to your niche.

4. Social Media Marketing

Every small business needs customers. Without qualified customers, it would be hard for small business to stay alive in the long run. When you use social media marketing for small business you can easily reach out to your target customers and it gives you the power to learn more about your customers, their interests and build a long-lasting relationship as well.

The majority of social media advertising is inexpensive than traditional advertising, so you don’t have to waste a lot of dollars to meet more audience and its aid to grow customer base and gain more reputation.

If you need to enhance your small business campaign, then try these methods which are mentioned below:

• Set Goals and Objectives
• Focus your Efforts on select Networks
• Use Paid Social Ads
• Collect Audience Feedback

5. Live Streaming

Video live streaming is the act of transmitting live footage over the internet to active prospects or customers. Live streaming is a powerful tool for connecting with your target audience. Facebook Live is the preferred choice for the most people and marketers around the world to engage their audience and grow their business.
The appearance of Facebook Live and Instagram doesn’t just mean fun for users. Nowadays it’s changing the way small businesses market themselves on social media to connect with their followers and find new ones.

6. Influencers Marketing

Influencer marketing is a highly effective way of generating trust and advertise your brand through influencers from a specific niche. It lets you tap into the networks of some of the most connected people in social media.

Influencer marketing involves using key brand advocates to drive your message to the larger market in an organic way and grow awareness about your brand and/or products. If you need to promote your products or services, influencer marketing may prove to be the best option for small business.

7. Hyper-Local Marketing

Hyperlocal marketing is a shape of highly targeted and is a marketing buzzword that focused in a certain city, neighborhood or region. It is a great way to increase your businesses presence in your niche marketing and acquire their attention and business.

You can use online search ads to drive local traffic to your business. Ensure that the ads are actually optimized for local customers. For online ads, mobile technology is a powerful tool and you can use social media channels to acquire your customers experience and reviews in your hometown as well.

7 Ways to Get Maximum Marketing Results at Any Time

Here is something many entrepreneurs need to understand when it comes to marketing: there is no such thing as guaranteed results.

There are too many factors about your marketing campaign that no one can control. Among them, there is the behavior of the overall market, competitive pricing, demand for offers like yours, current events, and others.

It would be anti-ethical for any marketing agency or freelancer to guarantee ABC results if you invest XYZ amount of money. But it does not mean that there are not ways to get the most out of your marketing budget (according to the circumstances).

Here are seven ways you can maximize your marketing efforts – whether we are in a recession or a booming period.

Do Not Confuse Marketing with Networking

If you are marketing your business, you need to understand the difference between connecting and communicating with your community and sharing / promoting your business.

Do not take to social media or networking events to present your sales pitch right away. People do not like it when you sell stuff to them. Instead, connect first by hearing about their problems, and communicate with them in ways they can solve those problems.

There will be time for you to promote and share on social media and at networking events. But you need to build a relationship first. That way, your audience would not feel like you are selling to them, but that they are taking advice. Because they trust you.

Market Efficiently

I am a firm believer in A/B testing. It is the best way to keep your marketing campaigns rolling and not waste your budget.

You do not want to throw money away with marketing that is not appealing to your market. That is why it is imperative that you constantly test your letters, ads, and emails to see what is getting the attention of the market, and what is persuading them into buying.

Cut What Does Not Work

Once you start testing your marketing efforts, you will know what to keep and what to drop.

You do not need to be everywhere at once. You need to be where your market wants you to be.

Do not waste your time on Facebook if the people are not responding. Stop sending letters if there are no sales coming from them. And please, do not waste two million dollars on a TV spot that won’t produce any ROI.

Inbound Marketing vs Outbound Marketing

I believe both inbound and outbound marketing have a place and are beneficial to every business. But they have their place in the marketing process.

Outbound marketing should be the focus when you are starting out. You need to let people know that you are there to help them. Thus, you should be sending emails, making phone calls, and making the first step to connect with the market.

Once you have set up a reputation for your business, then inbound marketing takes over. Because people will be looking for you. They will look at your website, your blog, and your social media channels.

So, do not disregard either marketing strategy. Just place them correctly according to the level of growth of your business. Outbound marketing when you are looking to prove yourself, and inbound marketing when you have an established name in the market.

Cold Calling as a Marketing Tactic

Most people are afraid of cold calling. Honestly, I believe “terrified” is a more proper term.

That is the reason many dismiss this tactic from their marketing strategy. But I think cold calling is as practical a marketing tactic as any of the others.

You need to make that first connection. And if the market is not coming to you, you might as well go to them.

And cold calling is not as bad as people make it out to be.

All you need is a good script and some thick skin (to handle rejection). And after a couple of times doing it, you will feel comfortable approaching targets and converting them into leads.

Hire Professionals

You can divide any marketing campaign into three facets: strategy, content, and design.

If you have experience in marketing planning, website design, and copy and content writing – then, by all means, go for it. Although I would recommend getting a critique from a professional on each, just to go safely.

But, if you are marketing your business, and have no prior planning, writing, or designing experience, your best bet is to hire professionals for each endeavor. They will know what to do to present your product in the most appealing way possible to your market.

There is also the choice of learning things yourself, but if time is not on your side, then I suggest hiring the professionals anyway until you can take over after getting some marketing seasoning.

Plan Your Marketing

You might have expected this to be tip number one. But I wanted to make sure you understood some things before we got into time management.

But now that we got the small details explained, here is a template to develop a weekly marketing schedule:

Mondays: Market research to find targets

Tuesdays: Prospecting

Wednesdays: Content marketing

Thursdays: Automation

Fridays: Website updates

Every day: Networking on Twitter and LinkedIn

Make sure to separate (at least) an hour every workday to do your marketing. You can perform a marketing task each day to keep your efforts moving. Also, make room for at least half an hour of networking – online or in person.

Some Straight Talk on Affiliate Marketing

My wife and daughter are out of town today so I was going to get caught up on my favorite TV shows: Supergirl, Flash, Supernatural and Legion.

I definitely like the superhero shows. I grew up watching Christopher Reeve’s Superman films and reading comics.

But when I got home, I decided to take a nap…

… and that nap turned into sleeping through the night!

Remember, yesterday I gave you a taste of how Internet Marketing works. Click here if you missed it so you can catch up!

I know there’s one that’ll suit your interests and complement your skills.

In reality, the Internet can give you countless possibilities in business and earnings. I’ll focus on the most proven ones.

These are known to have launched thousands of Internet businesses all over the world and helped local brick-and-mortar businesses see profits early.

And today I’ll start examining for you the 3 Internet Marketing (IM) models for you to choose from, starting with Affiliate Marketing.

This model is all about you joining forces with an online seller or retailer. I’ll refer to them as merchants for the rest of this article.

The revenue will be shared by you and the merchant.

How does it work EXACTLY?

Well, income is usually generated through visitors clicking through to your landing page via an ad you posted. Or through purchases from clients, who have visited your landing page.

How you’re compensated, ultimately, depends on, one of three types of Affiliate Marketing you choose to work with:

1. Pay per Sale Affiliate Marketing – this will allow you to earn income from sales finalized through advertisements you post.

The merchants will monitor your activity through these sales.

Every time they close deals originating from your ad, you’ll receive a percentage of the income or a fixed commission, depending on the number of sales finalized. One example is ClickBank.com.

2. Pay Per Click Affiliate Marketing – this model is all about linking the merchant’s website to your own website. Say the merchant pays to have their ad posted on your page. Every time a visitor clicks the link that leads to your affiliate merchant’s page, you’ll earn a fixed amount.

3. Pay per Lead Affiliate Marketing – In this case, you’ll accept advertisements posted on your website. When leads originate from the ads or links on your website, you’ll get compensated.

How are payments made?

Payments are made instantly, weekly, bi-weekly or on a monthly basis. The payments you receive will be determined by the commission rate your merchant gives affiliates.