Your Own Venture? Make It Happen? by Perry Estelle

 

“He that controls others may be powerful,

but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.”

– Lao Tsu

 

Introduction-

 

Becoming highly skilled in one target [niche] marketing area is vital to the money you will make.

 

Niche marketing is the process of focusing on a select and specific group of people you are advertising to. And it has everything to do with the product you are selling.

 

For example, if you are marketing infant products, it would be very unwise [and costly] to stage a direct mail campaign on a random list.

 

How many times have you got a mailing that went in the trash just because it was selling a product or service you have no interest in?

 

How can you pre-quality or target market your audience before placing an ad? Test your ads in the smaller e-zines that offer low-cost advertising until you refine your ad and hit the right market.

 

As soon as you begin generating responses to your ads, keep in contact with these customers and grow from there. They will bring you more customers like themselves because “birds of a feather flock together.”

 

✔    Take your time to get to know some of the pros and read what they have to say;

 

✔    Survey and study the market;

 

✔    Read and educate yourself by investing time into study;

 

✔    Learn the tricks of the trade;

 

✔    Make friends and associates with “good” dealers and stick with them;

 

✔    Honor your word.

 

Selecting The Right U.R.L.-

Ask 500 people already in business how they decided upon their U.R.L. and you will get 500 different answers. Everyone has a story behind how they chose their own business name.

 

Even if the business is named after their own birth name, there’s a reason why this was done. When you open a web business, in a sense, you are causing a new birth to begin.

 

Just as if you were choosing a name for your own unborn child, you need to spend considerable time in deciding upon your business name.

 

There are several reasons why a good business name is vitally important to your business. The first obvious reason is because

it is the initial identification to your customers; your brand-awareness.

 

Your U.R.L. is a catchy, easy-to-remember indication as to the product or service you offer. Names like “classytreasures.com”,  “sensiblecomputersolutions.com”,  or “needamillion.com” are good examples of catchy names.

 

These types of names relate to your product or service but also serve as a type of branding for your business. This is a critical element of successful marketing.

 

When you are brainstorming a name, you may need to wait until you have a product or service to sell and then decide upon a business name; because your business name should give a direct clue as to what product or service you are selling.

 

To generate ideas, begin looking at U.R.L.’s everywhere you go.

 

Notice which ones catch your eye and stick in your mind. Then, when you finally find a few names you really like- try bouncing them off other people and get their opinion- observe their reaction.

Information Products-

Millions of e-books and Special Reports sold every year by small, unassuming, desktop publishers that operate from a home-based office.

If you have no desire to write your own material, you’ll learn how to get authors to write for you:

 

http://www.elance.com

http://www.rentacoder.com

 

Many authors have chosen to by-pass the usual publishing routes and, instead, self-publish their own books. Admittedly, this means more profits.

 

This section is not about writing. It is assumed that you will write your own booklets, or JV with ghostwriters to write for you. So, the following information will focus only on the steps you need to take to succeed (make money) as a self-publisher.

 

Birds-Eye View-

 

➢   Generate book ideas and proposals, either your own or by hiring authors/ghostwriters;

 

➢     Evaluate these ideas and proposals as to the feasibility of producing a valued book, and reaching a large group of hungry prospective customers;

 

➢   Evaluate the size of the market and determine how you’ll reach that market;

 

➢   Research any competitive books;

 

➢   Consider various related products that you could sell to the people who buy your book- an invaluable use for obtaining Private Label Rights {P.L.R.’s};

 

➢     Write and edit the book or JV with a ghostwriter to do it for you;

 

➢   Begin your marketing effort by designing Web copy, ads and brochures;

 

[Often, this step comes before, or during, writing the book.

Your sales material can give you something to “live up to.”]

 

➢   Launch a test marketing [pre-launch] campaign, followed by a full scale marketing and publicity campaign;

 

➢   Sell follow-up products to your customers [back-end sales are your ‘large’ money-maker.

 

Selecting a Topic-

 

The best, and easiest, subjects for self-publishers to produce are of the “how to” genre. Books, reports and manuals that tell readers how to do something are among the liveliest sellers -vs- broad coverage books.

 

It’s very difficult for a small publisher to be successful with novels, or poetry books. So this section will focus on “how to” books. However, you can apply many of the techniques discussed here to market these other kinds of books as well.

 

To begin, you should publish material on topics which you are most familiar or are deeply passionate about. You should also have a market targeted and a plan for reaching that market.

 

Example:

 

You may have in mind to produce a book about how to make money with crafts– to be sold in small craft shops, craft fairs, craft magazines and through direct mail to people who make craft items; as well as off the Web.

 

It’s not necessary for you to be an expert on a topic if you aren’t writing the book yourself. But you do need to be knowledgeable enough to evaluate the book proposals that are submitted to you.

 

Otherwise, you’ll have to hire an expert to evaluate the manuscript for you. Most small publishers specialize in one or two general topics.

 

Once you have a few potential topics, these ideas must be evaluated.

 

The most crucial question is, “does the market demand a book like this and, if so, how will I sell it?”

 

First, you need to evaluate the size of the market. If there are only a few hundred people who would be interested in your book, you may want to reconsider.

 

Many desktop publishers recommend that you have a potential market of at least 10,000 people who would be interested in your topic. Next, you need to determine if these people are easy to reach.

 

✔    Are there e-zines, trade associations, or mailing lists that you can use?

 

✔    Perhaps, Web newsgroups/forums/blogs you can lurk?

 

Other Factors to Evaluate-

 

➢   Are there any similar books already on the market;

 

➢   How is your book different (more valuable);

 

➢   Are there enough people who really want your book;

 

➢   Is your information up-to-date;

 

➢   Can you produce exciting promotional material to sell your book?

 

It’s important to consider your book’s selling points. If it’s easy, write an ad for the book; that is, your material has many selling points- the book will be easier to market. More about book marketing later.

 


Book Titles-

 

The title of your book is of the greatest importance. It alone will determine the sales volume to a HUGE degree. A good title will often result in increased interest as well as higher profits.

 

It is basically a mini-billboard. “Never judge a book by its cover” [or title, in this case] definitely does NOT apply in marketing!

 

Example:

 

How to Get Rich in Mail Order is much better than How to Get Started In Mail Order. Here are a few more good examples of lively book titles:

 

➢   Homemade Cash!

 

➢   Cash From Your Computer!

 

➢   Is There a Book Inside You?

 

➢   129 Ways Anyone, Anywhere Can Make $200 Right After Dinner!

 

➢   How to Write a Million Dollar Opportunity Book!

 

➢   Why S.O.B.’S Succeed and Nice Guys Fail In Small Business

 

➢   How to Write a Hit Song…AND SELL IT!

 

➢   Joint Venture Secrets Revealed

 

➢   And so on…

 

A good book title should:

 

➔    Grab the attention of the reader;

 

➔    Honestly and clearly reveal the book’s subject;

 

➔    Arouse interest;

 

➔    Define the area covered by the book;

 

➔    Promise an immediate benefit.

 

Many books also have a subtitle. The subtitle is usually about

6 to 15 words long and should reveal even more about the book. For example:

 

QUICK CASH:

 

How Anyone, At Any Time, Anywhere Can Make At Least $200

Right After Dinner!

 

One more thing about book titles:

 

If you’re planning to produce ads or direct mail pieces to promote your book, you should consider a snappy, upbeat title which can also be used as your headline.

 

The above book title, along with its sub-title, in national full-page advertisements has sold thousands of copies of the book, Quick Cash. It’s attention-getting, informative, captures the imagination of the proper prospect and offers a benefit.

 

Book Editing-

 

Editing a book takes a considerable amount of time. There are many things to check for, including:

 

✔    Spelling errors;

 

✔    Sentences that are too long;

 

✔    Misuse of words;

 

✔    Punctuation errors;

 

✔    Capital letters;

 

✔    Nonsense sentences;

 

✔    Factual errors;

 

✔    Omissions of vital material…

 

Eliminating spelling errors is the easy part.

 

It is wise to make three passes through the entire book looking for errors. Have another person- skilled at editing-  make a final check of the book; most beneficial. They will look at the book with a fresh view and catch errors that you may have overlooked.

 

The two most important parts of editing is to:

 

➢   Check the book’s facts;

 

➢   Check the book’s completeness.

 

You must make certain that the book contains no factual errors and that it adequately covers the topic. If your book falls short in these two areas, it will most likely be a failure and a waste of your time and money, as well as a waste of your reader’s time and money.

 

So always double check each fact and make certain that all of the important facets of the topic are discussed. In other words, make sure that your book has something informative to say and that it’s said correctly.

 

You’ll want a sufficient number of pages in your book to adequately cover the topic. However, make sure that you have something worth saying; then say it succinctly. “How-to” readers dislike rambling prose.

 

So, leave all fluff out of your book and get to the point.

 

It’s often assumed that “page count” determines the price you charge for your book. In reality, it’s the real value of the information you provide that should determines price.

 

For example:

 

You have discovered a unique, fast, easy, low-cost way to make fuel for diesel automobiles at home with left-over cooking oil. If you can relate that information in 6 just pages, you can most likely sell your report for a very high price.

 

Who cares how many pages it takes?

 

It’s the how-to information that’s important.

 

The above is also a good example of real value -vs- perceived value [a dollar amount attached to an offering that makes it appear to be worth far more than the information is actually worth].

 

Book Pricing and Marketing-

 

Whatever amount you come up with for the price of your book, remember that- unlike selling hard copy- every sale you make is almost entirely profit. Furthermore, because it is automatically delivered-

 

Your initial labor investment will be making you money over and over, via replication.

 

Without JV leverage, initial advertising can deeply inhale 60% to 75% of your profits; aggressively promoting your book to get into the mass market.

 

Marketing efforts really begin before the book is even printed. At minimum, you must:

 

✔    Define and identify your most likely customers;

 

✔    Determine why they would want your book;

 

✔    Design benefit laden ads and brochures;

 

✔    Direct your ads toward the most likely place your prospect will see it.

 

Your marketing strategy should also consist of developing a Reseller’s [Affiliate] Program to dealers, wholesalers and bookstores. Other marketing strategy considerations include:

 

➔    Sending publicity releases;

 

➔    Mailing review book copies to editors of appropriate publications;

 

➔    Appearing on radio or TV talk shows.

 

There are literally hundreds of different ways to sell your books. One thing is certain; on-line publishing is as close to pure profit as it gets.

 

You’ll need to design hard-hitting, compelling ad/sales copy. Your book ads, direct mail pieces, brochures and dedicated Web Site should focus on the benefits that the book will give the customer.

 

Typical benefits include:

 

✔    More money;

 

✔    A better job;

 

✔    Health;

 

✔    Happiness;

 

✔    Knowledge;

 

✔    Love;

 

✔    Luck;

✔    Personal improvement;

 

✔    And so on…

 

Your ads and sales copy must rapidly convince your prospects that they’ll enjoy the instant gratification of these benefits by buying your book. Therefore, your ads must be eye-catching, descriptive and inspirational.

 

If you don’t want to tackle writing your own ads, hire or JV with a direct response copywriter to do it for you [a share in the profits].

 

Really goods ones can often bring you a constant stream of business. Trade journals such as Direct Marketing magazine and DM News may be of use for copywriter listings.

 

Another important factor to consider is the overall appearance of your ads and brochures. Simply put, they should look appealing and be easy to read.

 

Make sure that you follow the rules of typesetting, proper graphic techniques and, most importantly, deploy a stop-the-readers-dead-in-their-tracks headline and irresistible, well- written ad copy.

 

A solid, reliable guarantee will definitely improve sales!

 

Additional Income Potential-

 

One of the best ways to produce additional income from your book is through back-end sales and up-selling; selling other products that are directly related to the book’s topic.

 

If you’re selling a book about making money with computers, for example, you should include an offer for other money-making opportunity books.

 

When your client receives their order for your main product, they also receive a link and one-time 50% off digital coupon for your other products.

 

Since the customer has already expressed an interest in your topic by buying your book, it is a statistical certainty that a certain percentage of those buyers will also be interested in your other related products…

 

Provided that your customer was truly satisfied with their investment in you.

 

You can get these other products by:

➔    Developing them yourself;

 

➔    JV’ing with other freelance writers;

 

➔    Obtaining Reseller’s/Reprint Rights [such as the ones included with this product;

 

➔    Acting as a dealer for other companies [Affiliate Reseller]. Some self-publishers.

 

➔    Researching the Public Domain.

 

In the long run, you’ll tend to make more money from back-end sales than you did from the original book sale, via your customer mailing [opt-in] list. You can continue to e-mail catalogs or information on your latest offerings throughout the year to your buyers.

 

Another important aspect of marketing is the manner in which you operate your business. You should always bend over backwards to treat the customer with ultimate respect:

 

➢   Answer all complaints politely and objectively!

 

➢   Return all refunds promptly and cheerfully!

 

➢   Sincerely thank folks requesting a refund- for checking you out!

 

➢   Reply to every inquiry the same day, if possible.

 

You need to develop a good reputation for your enterprise, if you actually expect to reap repeat orders and good word of mouse.

 

Many desktop publishing authors have become millionaires. Serious ones make an above average living. Writing and marketing- the essence of desktop publishing- takes learning, practice, perseverance and determination.

 

Granted, the work is “easy.” It’s not like mining 16 tons of coal.

 

But your brain will be engaged at all times and you must constantly seek ways to better market your book. Maybe 5% of your efforts will be tied up in producing your book; the other 95+% will be marketing.

 

As a matter of fact, if you are deeply passionate about your offerings- not only will you lose sleep from time to time; your mind racing with possibilities…

 

You’ll even begin to lucidly dream about your Web endeavors!

 

However- no matter how good your book is, now matter how well written, no matter how timely or interesting the topic:

 

Nothing will happen until you harvest leads and lead prospects to the point of taking out his or her check card and actually buying.

 

Keep in mind- as you prepare sales copy for a salable book or report- that you will master the techniques of marketing.

 

These two skills, writing and marketing, can be easily learned. And, as you progress, you’ll discover pockets of profit that can send your earnings sky high.

 

Though self-publishing your own book, like most worthwhile endeavors, takes some amount of preparation; the potential for earning on the Web is simply staggering! You can JV or hire experts to do a large part of the work for you (design covers, typesetting, editing, indexing, ghostwriting, etc.).

 

It is recommended that you save yourself some problems by preparing an overall plan for producing and marketing your book. You’ll also want to gather additional products related to the book’s topic that you can sell for additional profits.

 

Thousands of successful authors have found that desktop publishing is the only route to take. Why not you?!?

Developing a Affiliate Network-

You may have the greatest bargain in the world, but it will be of no value to you if you don’t know who’s going to buy it, or how you are going to get the word out about it.

 

One highly successful way to do it, is recruit as many other people as you can to help do the selling. This means setting up a distributor network; known as a Reseller or Affiliate Program.

 

To do this, you must make it worthwhile for other people to sell your product. You offer a percentage of the sales price to each book they sell for you. Generally, this is at least 50% for each copy sold [more is better].

 

Also, truly excited and satisfied end-consumers make the best sales force. In other words, allow end-consumers who have taken the time to write you a heart-felt testimony to become special Affiliates [a higher percentage than your standard Affiliates].

 

The important thing is to shave your profits to a minimum when you have other people doing the work for you, which is to say that the more generous your are in your Affiliate Commissions, the more people will move product for you.

 

Setting up your distributor program will require advertising and a sales kit for the sellers.

 

To actually get these interested opportunity seekers highly motivated to sell your product for you, you’ll need a dynamic sales letter and seller’s kit; to send out in response to the replies to your advertising.

 

Cultivating Your Own Profitable E-mailing List-

Assuming you’ve got a great product and sizzling, order-pulling sales copy, your focus is now on the problem of cultivating an opt-in e- mailing list that respond [produce profitable orders].

 

Without a good mailing list; the time and money you spend on product and market research, advertising layout and knowledge relating to direct marketing will be futile.

 

You get your prospect’s e-mail address with a genuinely high-quality, “must-have” offer, at no cost to them; otherwise do not waste their time. The Web is already over-polluted with way too much garbage, disguised as “information”.

 

It has been determined, time and time again; in most cases, people do not make a purchase until after the third contact- and as many as seven contacts later.

 

Typical Statistics:

 

Upon first visit you will do well to get a .5% to 1% conversion ratio [this means 1 actual buyer for every 100 to 200 visitors].

 

Using auto responders, or a high quality, content rich e-zine, your conversion ratio jumps up as high as 16% by the third contact. By the seventh contact, conversion ratios in excess of 60% have been achieved!

 

Regardless of how obvious this seems, it is the most-often over-looked part of the beginning Infopreneur’s planning. A word to the wise:

 

Do not think you’ll save time by buying inexpensive e-mailing lists.

 

You’ll waste money chasing the wind with these lists. And as an added bonus, you’ll get nailed for being a spammer. If you’re really unfortunate, you’ll be charged by th F.C.C…

These lists are compiled from bulk e-mail harvester programs, such as List Sorcerer. The best thing to do is cultivate your own from scratch.

 

As mentioned previously; this can be via a Premium free offer or your own e-zine/newsletter.

 

In either case, you want to offer something that has real value to the reader and is good enough quality that it could actually be sold for money.

 

Your sign-up offer will say volumes about you, and will ultimately be be the “make or break” in keeping a prospect. Set your venture up the right way, the first time, and offer nothing but the Finest- free or for pay.

 

Doing so, with liberal Reseller’s or Free Reprint Rights [in the case of a give-away product or bundle] will generate you a steadily-growing stream of traffic and sales for months and years to come.

 

In addition- offer Rebranding Rights to your book, for a small fee.

 

Likewise, a superior-quality e-zine will do the same, as it is shared beyond your subscriber list.

 

One final word to the wise-

 

Do NOT create a Windows executable [.exe] product- stick whole-heartedly to PDF’s ONLY!

 

We wish you success!

 

Sincerely,

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