7 Lessons Marketers Can Learn From the Twilight Story Series

No, I haven’t gone mad! I firmly believe that marketing, whether online or offline is all about the right attitude and inspiration. So nothing is wrong in finding inspiration from a vampire cult series – Twilight – by Stephanie Meyer.

Lessons Marketers Can Learn From the Twilight Story SeriesIf you haven’t seen or read the story, which is most unlikely, I suggest you head to Wikipedia.

What all can we learn?

1. How to remain persuasive?

Victoria, the cat-like villainess in the story, wants to exact revenge from The Cullen family for killing her mate, James. She is shown as a relentless character – aggressive and single–minded who doggedly pursues her enemy.

We as marketers need to be like her. She is inspiring because she never gives up, despite knowing that the Cullen family is stronger in their unity. Marketers need to pursue their goals like Victoria does, no matter how far fetched the idea seems in the beginning.

2. How to collaborate?

When it comes to protect the protagonist, Bella Swan, Edward Cullen and Jacob Black, the vampires and the werewolves join hands to fight their common enemy, Victoria. They show uncharacteristic team leading capability, along with a certain determination to protect Bella.

So…imagine your business that needs protection and you have no choice but to collaborate with another, what would you do? If you are sane, you will do what Edward and Jacob did.

Collaboration is the best thing in marketing. Rather than holding the reins in your hands in a rather domineering manner, try to delegate work and build up a good rapport with the team. Online or offline, marketing has a greater chance of success when everyone on the same team is working together.

3. How to maximize power?

A single stick breaks with a light snap but a bunch of sticks takes time to break – this should be your marketing mantra. In the story, the Cullen family, Jacob Black’s werewolf clan and Victoria’s army – all are examples of excellent resourcefulness and the desire to multiple power though groupism.

Forget the intention, see the strategy.

If you have a sellable product but it is not getting enough traction, draw your powers together and multiply. If you consider it further, this is what affiliate marketing is all about. We create affiliate networks, draw the power of the masses, and make sales. Excellent!

4. How to really love your business?

Bella Swan epitomizes undying and unconditional love. She waits for Edward even after he leaves Forks and hopes he would return one day. Such kind of love is everlasting and successful.

Love, hope, everlasting and success – these are the words that apply to marketing business too. It often happens that we are frustrated, depressed, irritated when our businesses do not run successfully. We are evoked to just leave everything undone and crib.

But that is not the right way! If you can really love your marketing business, you will have hope and success, either today or tomorrow. Any marketing business grows with undying determination, with a will to succeed and the desire to emerge successful.

Learn from Bella to do all these things and emerge a wizened individual.

5. How to remain practical and not lose your mind illogically?

Going back to the first lesson, we can also say that Victoria was a little illogical in doing what she ultimately did. After all, it was the fault of James when he tried to attack and kill Bella. Even if Victoria doggedly wanted revenge, there was no purpose in her endeavor.

See, you need to have purpose in anything you do. Just because a handful of Internet marketing gurus say online marketing is a Pandora box of millions of dollars, never decide anything in haste.

Use your logical reasoning. Think if you have the necessary skills to become a marketer, fine if you have but what if you don’t? You can still try provided you are determined to learn a few ropes from experienced marketers.

The point is – logically analyze what you are doing. Victoria did not and she paid for it with her life.

6. How to fight for yourself?

It’s a big bad world out there, where people are ready to rip you apart, where you won’t have a moment’s peace if you don’t know how to take care of yourself.

Take Bella Swan, for instance. Without either Edward or Jacob, she would have been lost and become a completely battered person. Ten years down the line, she would have called herself a failure.

Do you want the same happening with you? Whether you have anyone to support you or not, you need to learn to fight for yourself and survive. This applies not only to the gigantic world of marketing but also to life itself.

In marketing, a bit of miscalculation, a wrong step, an illogical strategy will tear you apart and destroy any future plans.

To save yourself from such happening, seek out your interest first without hurting anyone.

7. How to bounce right back on track if you have fallen on bad times?

The name of the story, Twilight, has a significant meaning. It is about how you can fall on bad times but not lose courage and come out a winner.

I know it is easier said than done. There are businessmen who invest everything they have in a seemingly good venture, only to massively fail and then what?

Should they keep failing and give up every hope or should they become optimistic again and take on life with full force?

I agree with the second option.

In the circle of life, bad times will always lead to good times, yet again.

To conclude…

I hope I haven’t bored you to death. While I was thinking about promoting a new product today, I came across this idea and thought to share it with my readers.

I will be glad if you enjoyed it as much as I loved penning it.

Share your thoughts below.

Making Money With eBook Sales

A lot of people have tried to make money online and a lot of people have failed, mainly because they were not ready to tap the potential of some ‘not-so-known’ earning resources.

Online earning goes beyond Google AdSense – the most popular application for earning online. In the last few years, the technological development has made it possible for people to read books online, something we refer to as eBooks.

Making Money With eBook SalesIf you have been to Amazon.com you will know that its “Kindle” edition is popular among the eBook reading masses.

Like Kindle, there are a few other applications that make it easy for you to read books online and also in creating your own eBook.

Gone are the days when you had to depend on publishers to get your book printed and distributed.

Now all you need is a manuscript and a good marketing program to sell eBooks. Let’s look at these in detail.

Content Creation

Your first step towards turning an eBook into a ‘money minting machine’ is CONTENT.  Excellent content comes from generating great ideas and selecting the best ones that sell.

From purely a business perspective of a small business entrepreneur, this is one of the best possible ways to earn money on the internet. Generally, most of the eBooks are non-fiction in nature and considering there are lots of competitors out there, you’ll need to develop on an idea that people are willing to purchase eBooks on.

You have to stand out from the competition and establish your foothold, which you can do by providing excellent and informative content that readers are interested in.

As you know, content creation is the toughest. You can write the eBook yourself or outsource the task. Even if you are outsourcing, you have to keep yourself inline with the eBook development, therefore, the main responsibility falls on you to develop it through every production stage.

Before you start developing its content, you need to analyze your idea deeply, especially from a sales point of view. Picking a topic is one the primary stumbling blocks.

You should write on those topics that online users demand information about. Take  Facebook – its popularity has given opportunity to several internet marketers to develop books on Facebook, dealing with its every aspect.

Same is the case with Twitter. The one thing important here is the ‘motivation factor.’ Question yourself – what can you write that will encourage people to buy?’ Or ask yourself – ‘will you buy the book you are writing?’ You will have your answer.

Now if you have decided on a topic or subject to write about, the next step is to RESEARCH- WRITING. Any kind of content creation is 80% research and 20% writing.

As preliminary preparation, research online sources for suitable information that is factual and accurate. Not only electronic files but offline resources like libraries should be used to extract research material. Once all your material is up-to-date, organize it in a rough format.

When you start to write in real time, prepare the rough draft as quickly as you can. Don’t worry about grammar and spelling. Keep editing for later. The best eBooks are ones that explains complex ideas in simpler terms for the readers.

Of course, needless to say, do not plagiarize or violate copyright laws. Similarly, you would not want someone else to plagiarize your work. Since eBooks are in PDF format, you can use technical help like password protection for your books. With password protection, unsolicited people cannot access your eBook and thus you can protect your copyright.

Each country has its own COPYRIGHT LAWS. Check with your publishing and copyright laws first. You need to register for a copyright because by doing so, the work enters public record.

Make sure that your eBook is not leaked before you get copyrights because if it does, you are in no position to sue anyone. In short, copyright is essential so get it before anyone else plagiarizes your work.

EBook Pricing and Marketing

Now that you have got the eBook ready completely, the next step is to ‘get it out there’ and earn some profits. From the business perspective, you need to keep the price not too high and not too low. See, the entire pricing game depends upon how well you create the book.

Some entrepreneurs give away eBooks for free to their website subscribers but that doesn’t mean they are not earning anything. Such kinds of eBooks are more product-based.

For instance, if you are in the industry marketing health products, you have a site where you upload content daily and you have also placed affiliate links connecting to those health products you represent.

When your website is popular and has loyal subscribers, you can create a 100 page product-based eBook – talking about ailments and its remedies, which typically are the products you are an affiliate of – and give away the eBook to members.

If readers find the information interesting, they will definitely buy. If you want this kind of eBook marketing and sales generation strategy, the math goes something like this:

No. of active website subscribers – 200 users

Your affiliate commission from each sale – 25% minimum

Without an eBook, you sell to 80 users in a month products worth $125, suppose. Therefore, you earn – 25% of $125 x 80 sales = $2500 per month.

Again,

No. of active website subscribers – 200 users

Your affiliate commission from each sale – 25% minimum

EBook creation cost – Nothing per se if you write it on your own; possibly $300-$400 for a 75 page eBook if outsourced to another writer.

With an eBook, you sell to 150 users in a month products worth $125, suppose. Therefore, you’ll earn – 25% of $125 x 150 sales = $4687.5 per month. Reduce $400 for outsourcing costs and another $100 for setting up a website; you profit $4187.5 per month.

In the above business proposition, your increase in product sales after the eBook promotion is due to only one factor – EXCELLENT AND CONVINCING CONTENT.

Now, if you choose not to give away the eBook for free and wish to sell it, you can go the conventional way.

Of course, as I have been saying many times, your eBook should provide excellent content. If you are sure of it, then your marketing and revenue plan would involve creating a detailed sales page highlighting the ‘why’ readers need to purchase it, marketing the sales page through affiliate promotion and numerous other internet marketing strategies like directory promotion and forum interactions.

Here, you have to decide on the eBook cost also. There are books people buy for hundreds of dollars and there are books people won’t even pay a penny for. To keep it simple, sell the eBook affordably for others with different purchasing power, let’s say, $27

This is a pretty straight-forward way to make money from eBook selling. Since nearly 90% of internet marketers and small business entrepreneurs are doing it, you will have stiff competition. But if you are sure that your content is relevant, there is no limit to the amount of money you can earn. Let’s see the earning potential here:

Site setting up and maintenance costs – $100

EBook writing cost – $400 (nothing if you have written it)

Affiliate percentage you are giving – 25% to 5 affiliates with 10 sales each

Sales per month – 100

Per eBook cost – $27

Therefore, your income before expenditure is – $27 x 100 sales = $2700

Deductions:

Maintenance – $100

EBook cost – $400 (one time payment)

Affiliates – 25% of $27 = $ 6.75 to per affiliate sale; 10×5=50 sales mean 50 x $6.75 = $337.5

Finally, your gross earning – $1862.5.

In both strategies, the earning is profitable. Of course, you cannot expect these or better sales statistics to happen in the first month itself. You have to promote the eBook ceaselessly.

Payments

The payment system on your site should be fully automated. 90% of buyers are people who deal payments through credit cards so that is a must.

Integrating credit card payment on the site is not that difficult. Other modes of receiving payment are PayPal and ClickBank. Both the websites charge minimum fees per transaction. You also need to give a money back guarantee to buyers  with the purchase.

Since the buyers pay in full instantly, they expect to get the product instantly too. So make sure the server’s uptime is good. You can set the eBook as a downloadable feature upon payment or you can send the eBook as an email attachment.

Moreover, when buyers purchase, they have to enter their email and name. In one sense, it helps you to create a membership list too. So in case you create  another eBook or any other product, you already have a ready made list to focus on first.

Last Action

After everything is ready, DON’T FORGET TO MAKE A TEST PURCHASE. Ask a friend to purchase from your site and browse also. This way you’ll know if the automated payment scripts and onsite links are working correctly.

How To Research Your Target Audience For Sales Copy

Before you even think about writing a piece of sales copy, put an ample amount of time into researching your target audience. Research is definitely the key ingredient for crafting a winning sales letter, landing page or any form of direct response copy.

How to Research Your Target AudienceResearch can be overwhelming and somewhat tedious, but once you have all the ammunition needed, you’ll discover who your model prospect is and what your competition is doing.

You need to pull from many resources- plenty are found right here on the Internet. Take the time to do as much research as possible. It’s that vital. The more you’re able to resonate with your ideal prospect the better you’ll be able to write a sales piece directly to them.

Find out everything you can

Business owners are way too busy running the day-to-day operations and frankly tend to “be in love” with their product or service, focusing mostly on the features. Prospects don’t really care about that … they want to know how your product or service will solve their problem or fill their immediate need. Your focus needs to be on the prospect and what’s important to them.

This is where your value as a copywriter shoots through the roof. If you can find the hidden elements the business owner overlooks, that one piece of information very well could be what seals the deal.

1. Know the product:

What are the applications of this product? How reliable is the product? What are the features and benefits? Which benefit is the most important? How is the product different from the competition’s? Which features are exclusive? Is the product economical and efficient? How does this product solve the market’s problem? Is the product readily available? What sizes and models are available?

2. Know whom you are selling to:

Gender, age, location, income, desires, motivations and problems. What benefit is the most important? What is the biggest need right now? How is the problem affecting him/her today? What are the objections he/she has about your product or service?

3. Know your competition:

Always check out the web sites and landing pages of your competitors. How do they present the product or service? What words are used to grab your attention . . . or not? How is it formatted? What areas in the copy are strong or weak? Does the call to action motivate you to buy? What kind of guarantee is offered? Study and zone in on areas where your product or service is better.

5 resources to get your research started:

Online Discussions-Forums:

Forums are an excellent way to capture information about prospects in your market. You can sit back and read posts on different topics others are discussing, what questions, objections, what’s irritating to them and what their main concerns are.

Google/Yahoo Groups:

You can find just about any group in your market to swap ideas, ask and answer questions. Always pay close attention to how your market audience speaks. Applying their “lingo”while crafting your sales piece enables you to resonate with the audience building trust and credibility.

Read Articles in Magazines and Newspapers:

See what kind of information and value others are writing about and pay attention to anything news related to your market. Your creative juices will start to flow, allowing you to develop your own ideas.

Online Newsletters:

Signing up for free newsletters is a great way to observe what your competition is doing; what kind of information is provided as a subscriber, what bonuses are given away. Check out their
E-mail format, subject headlines, promotions, how many you’re receiving and study them.

Company Information:

Depending on the industry and product or service, copywriters request information directly from the business owner; sales letters, brochures, catalogs, market research, testimonials and featured articles about the company. The more information you receive… the better.

Go through your materials thoroughly and jot down any unique ideas or interesting facts.

With all the information you’ve acquired, now you’re ready to organize and craft your sales copy.

Meeting “Demand” and “Supply” as Affiliates

If you are still struggling to increase your income and have not yet reached your desired financial independence, it could be because you still don’t have a good website marketing strategy as an affiliate.

To become a successful entrepreneur, you need to build a proper strategy. Most importantly, you cannot copy exactly other marketers strategies…some will work while others may not. The trick is understanding your target market and its demand, then figure out what strategies to implement to turn things in your favor.

No matter whether the business is online or off, the only thing that matters in business is “Buying” and “Selling” and “Demand” and “Supply” – the basic economics an internet marketer needs to know – ‘who is the customer?’ and ‘what can you offer’ to the potential customer.

What Does The Consumer Want?

Meeting “Demand” and “Supply” as AffiliatesAs a seller, you need to have a clear idea about what the customer is looking to buy. The way to know this is to put yourself into the shoes of the consumer and find out what ‘clicks’ with them.

Once you catch the pulse of the consumers, it’ll be easier to sell products.

Involve yourself in online consumer surveys and online forums to understand what the consumer is looking for.

As an affiliate, your marketing strategy will not only depend on the selected product but the consumer market you need to target.

What Can You Offer?

Now that you know what the consumer wants, you need to assess your offer. Find out what makes your offer better than your competition. Questions like;

-Why should the consumer buy from you?

-How do I create an irresistible offer?

-Can the customer trust you?

-How are you representing the company’s image whose product you’re offering?

A successful internet marketer needs to specifically answer such questions.

The crux – if there are millions of people buying online everyday, then whose fault is it if they are not buying from you?

The Four Phases of Internet Affiliate Marketing


Phase I – Online Research

Research is the primary factor. Before you begin to draft marketing strategies, you need to research the target market and determine your standing in the market. Online market research will include:

  1. Researching competitors – their marketing strategies, popularity, market demand, weaknesses, product quality, customer feedback and online presence.
  2. Researching your customers – their purchase power, product demand, online visibility, purchase considerations and their geographical location.

Create a graft sheet highlighting your findings. This preliminary in-depth research will contribute hugely to your internet marketing success.

Phase II – Data Analysis

What do you do with the data collected in phase I? You analyze it! It is not without reason that million and billion dollar companies recruit pools of data analysts. With the help of data analysis, you can break up the market and consumer demands into segments. Here are certain analytical tools you can use:

  • Correlation Analysis
  • Regression Analysis
  • Factor Analysis
  • Brand Mapping
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Conjoint Analysis
  • Logistic Regression Analysis
  • CHAID Analysis
  • Multidimensional Analysis
  • Structural Equation Modeling

Phase III – Development of Marketing Strategies

Strategy development involves a bit of planning too. As a marketer, you need to know about tools and methods to utilize in your marketing strategy.

Depending on the consumer data analysis, you can employ marketing methods like podcasting, blogging, SEO, PPC, video blogging, viral traffic generation, banner exchange, webinars, link building and social media networking platforms like Facebook and Twitter.

By ‘consumer data analysis’, one means using those web marketing tactics that the consumer also uses. Suppose the market graph of a cluster of consumers show use of video blogging to know about more products and communicating with fellow bloggers.

In this case, you, as the internet marketer, should target video blogging and utilize the medium to create a larger consumer base.

Similarly, if another cluster of consumers spend their time on Facebook pages, talking about products and discussing reviews, you have another ‘potential market’ in the making.

You can create a Facebook page of the product you sell and use promotional and advertising tools to draw in consumers. In fact, Facebook offers a very interesting tool, seldom used by new internet marketers, that is, a tool to target consumers on the basis of their geographical location.

For instance, if you want to target a market in Western Europe, then you prepare your Facebook advertisement on the same lines and the ads will be shown only on select pages of consumers from Western Europe.

Online marketing is definitely time-consuming. You need to invest in both time and money to gain momentum in consumer market.

Phase IV – Strategy Testing & Monitoring

You will never know if your strategies are working until you implement them and monitor them regularly. Of course, don’t expect miraculous results in a few hours. Monitor for weeks to see any progressive change in the consumer inflow. In between this time, your ‘efforts’ should not cease.

The strategy testing and monitoring would involve;

-Evaluating the amount of time consumers spend on your website

-Visibility of the landing page

-Keyword optimization

-Target market oriented keywords

-SEO terms customers are using to land on your website.

What Did We Learn?

There aren’t any ‘fixed’ internet marketing strategies for upcoming affiliates. Each business devises their own strategy after careful analysis of the target market and their own place in the ever expanding consumer market.

The internet is a vast universe. To make your mark in the world of internet marketing, you need to devise your own business strategy that will be different and specifically relates to your own targeted niche.

Understand the pulse of the consumer – What attracts them and what doesn’t? On what products are they willing to spend money? What are they looking for in a particular product? How can you satisfy the consumer needs?

Once you understand these questions, you can come up with your own answers, and that will be your stepping stone into affiliate internet marketing strategy development.