Welcome To The Brand New Niche Site U

Hi all,

You may notice another test I am running… I have changed my domain to Niche Site U dot com!!  Under the old website, I wasn’t getting any organic traffic, at all.  I’m not talking about not getting keyword data because of Google’s efforts to not share what keywords are driving traffic to your site… Im saying I was getting zero traffic from the google’s search engine.  Luckily, thanks to visitors like you, I still get a decent amount of traffic visiting the site… but no love from Google.

So, I am conducting an experiment.  I 301’d all the old posts to this site, and will be waiting to see if I start ranking and generating traffic.  (Believe it or not, it already has improved).  One of the keywords I target went from being unranked to #87 already, so hopefully this will payoff for all my keywords.

The most puzzling/annoying part is that most websites get long tail traffic of some sort, and usually my targeted keywords only bring in about 20-30% of the overall organic traffic.  Again, I was getting zero visits from google for any keywords.

If this pays off, I will eventually get a custom design and spruce this place up… but for now, I am just seeing how things go.

Stay tuned for updates.

Adam

 

RANT!!! Why Niche Website Marketing Gets A Bad Name

I usually don’t like to rant like this… but while doing research for a future post for this site, I was looking through Flippa at “Adsense monetized” sites, which are traditionally niche websites, and I stumbled across this site. Before I go to deep, you should know that this site was sold at auction for over $350… which isn’t too bad.  Especially when you consider that it was likely just whipped together. Here is a picture and link to the actual auction, but please come back… don’t get lost on Flippa!

Flippa Auction

Link To Flippa Auction

Thanks for coming back.  Here is why I am ranting.  If you look at this website, it is literally one of the worst sites I have ever seen!!  Somehow, according to the auction listing… this is a PR2 site, and actually gets google organic traffic!!

Meanwhile, I struggle to get ANY organic traffic at all from google for this site (thats another post for the near future) while trying to provide the best content I can.  What is big G thinking?  So lets just look at a few of the issues with this website.

  1. PrettyLadySmiles.com is apparently “targeted to solving many major problems that women face in their lives”.  Yet, their main headline on the site is some jibberish about “Tips for Purchasing the Operating Footwears For Women”.   But what does the domain name hae to do with any of the this??  Now that is Quality Contents!! 😉
  2. There is a ridiculous amount of misspellings and hideous english.  One of my favorites is in their something about us section on the homepage that says, “To know more information take a look of site :)”  What the heck does that mean???  Perhaps I should call the phone number right underneath it?
  3. If you are daring enough to scroll down, you will see a “Subscribe Us” button!!  yeah, im sure that won’t be spamming the hell out of anyone dumb enough to do it.
  4. In fairness, I will admit I did read through the masturbation techniques for women post and literally laughed out loud at the names of the techniques.
  5. Once I was done laughing at the above post… I figured it was time to get serious, so I went to the money link.  Boy, was I pleased with the results.  I saw the wonderfully worded “small buisness for simple woman” post.  Yep, it does take a simple woman to digest all the content on that page (1 paragraph that kind of fades away into nothing).

PLS2

Here is my point…

YOU HAVE NO EXCUSE TO SIT BACK AND WATCH ANYMORE!!   If this person can slap together this awful piece of junk and actually sell it for over $350 on flippa, what the heck is keeping you from building your own niche site?  Most people are worried about not being creative enough, clever enough, daring enough, fill in your excuse here enough to start… and then they get frustrated when they see someone less talented having success.  Well, here is a perfect example of someone having success with zero talent, content, command of the english language, good judgement, etc.  So GET STARTED NOW!!!  But please, do a better job than this clown so I don’t have to write a rant about your niche website 🙂

How To Build Your Niche Site Into An Authority Site

Create A BrandToday I want to talk about converting your niche site into an authority site… and what the basic requirements are.  Many of us build small niche sites to see if the site is going to be worthwhile to build out.  Once you have some success, converting your site from a niche website isn’t just simply adding more pages to it… it is about creating a brand around it. 

So lets discuss what an Authority Site needs to be, and how to get there from your current niche.

According to Wikipedia: Brand is the “name, term, design, symbol, or any other feature that identifies one seller’s product distinct from those of other sellers”. Initially, Branding was adopted to differentiate one person’s cattle from another’s by means of a distinctive symbol burned into the animal’s skin with a hot iron stamp, and was subsequently used in business, marketing and advertising.

The reason I want to discuss Branding is because in essence, an authority site is a website Brand.  Here are a few things that your brand and authority website need to have:

Accountability

An authority site/brand is Accountable:  reputation management is becoming more important by the day and brand transparency is critical for you to have success.  Your website can’t have filler content, irrelevant information, or anything that isn’t helpful to establishing you as an authority.

Trust

If you and your authority website aren’t trusted, then you may as well just stay as a niche site trying to make some small change with adsense.  To be an authoritative brand, you have to be trusted to deliver engaging and accurate information.  Those of you familiar with Niche Site Duel 1 may remember that Pat Flynn’s opponent/partner was using fake information to try to demonstrate value.  All of it was a lie.  It somehow worked out for Pat still, but Tyrone didn’t fare nearly as well.  If people can’t trust you, they won’t come back to your website.

Experience

In the example above, someone tried to provide value and earn trust by faking experience.  An authority doesn’t get that way by not having experience.  Now, this doesn’t mean that you have to go to school for 10 years to be considered an expert in your niche…  it just means that you need to have to be more than just slightly familiar with the topic at hand.  A simple way to gain experience is to read 3-5 books specific to an industry/niche, and be involved in the niche segment for about 6 months or more.  Chances are good that after that… you will know more than 90% of the people in your field, and will at least not be considered a newbie since you have been around for 6 months.

Content

This is obviously critical.  I’m not going to write a ton about this… if you don’t know how important content is these days, then you will find it difficult to succeed.  Good content needs to bring value to the reader so they will come back tomorrow or share!

Raise Expectations

As an authority site, your website will need to be setting the bar for what readers should expect from a brand website.  Your goal should not be to replicate other websites in your niche… your goal should be to blow other sites out of the water.  Do your research so that you can find out what readers want, and then provide it to them.  Don’t settle for being #2 by copying… be #1 by changing the expectations of your audience so they stop going back to other websites!

Connection

People crave to be part of groups.  To create a strong brand, your authority website needs to be able to create a sense of community.  If you are able to create a website that allows like-minded individuals to read/share/engage with you and your audience, you will be able to create brand loyalty, a feeling of connection, and people will want to follow you wherever you choose to lead them.

Influence

I mentioned Pat Flynn earlier, and I feel he deserves to be mentioned again.  Pat’s Smart Passive Income Blog is tremendous at influencing people to action.  Now, those of you that know me, know that I feel his success comes primarily from his audience clicking on his affiliate links.  That is influence!!  Pat has done a tremendous job of getting people to read just enough of his site, and gives them just enough hope to want to click on his ads and try to have success themselves.  Unfortunately, I feel that Pat hasn’t done enough to show people exactly how to have that success… and few will be able to follow in his steps and succeed.  That said, he is a wonderful example of influence.

Plans

Do you want your audience talking about your brand and your authority site?  Scratch that… “WHAT” do you want your audience saying about your brand and your authority site?  Unsure… start thinking about that answer, right now!  Know the answer?  Then take action with your website to make sure that your audience has a reason to say it!

Value

Finally, and most importantly, you need to create value for your audience.  Now, we all know that you can’t be all things to all people, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t provide value.  The best thing about a niche site is that it only focuses on a very specific topic… and isn’t a wikipedia!  So, the value you bring doesn’t need to be for everyone in the world.  You can write polarizing content that gets some people to love you and others to hate you… and that is ok.  More specifically, that would be great because it might get you some extra publicity.

Bottom Line:  Have the well being of the audience at the core of everything you do.

Genesis Framework Test & Review

Hi all,

As you can probably tell, I have a new theme up… I am testing out the Genesis Framework.  Currently working with the Copyblogger theme… which is a free theme.  Im going to give it some time to work with, and then I will provide a full review.  I am also testing on a few of my niche sites.

Stay Tuned.

MMWNS Episode #12: Interview With Nick Quick – Dating Niche Sites and Monetizing Email Lists

Listen in iTunes

The Niche Site U Podcast

Please note, this may not be appropriate to listen to with children.  There are some mature topics and language discussed and used in this podcast.

Transcript coming soon.

Show Notes & Links

Sell More Of Your Products Using Affiliate Marketing

How to Choose an Affiliate Marketing Program (Network) 

Whether you want to start off small or get your product seen on the mega-affiliates, there is a wide range of programs that can help you find more sales and improve your profit margins. As a company looking for the right affiliate, there are few things you need to be looking out for as you search. Of course, affiliate marketing has very little risk for the company, as you do not have to pay for the advertising unless action is taken by the customer, but you still want to see returns on your time, as well as your monetary, investment.

Commission

Finding the right balance of commission versus price can be difficult, especially for companies that are just starting in affiliate marketing.  Of course, the marketers need to be compensated for advertising and promoting your product, but be wary of affiliates that demand more than 60% commission per sale. Unless you are already planning to spend 60% or more of your budget on marketing, this is simply not a fair price for you as a company. You still deserve to make money off of the products you offer. After all, it is you, not the affiliate that has to expend money in research, development, and production of your products.

As prices of products go up, the commission percentage should come down. For expensive items—over $150—commissions should start dropping to 40% or lower. Just because the item is more expensive doesn’t mean it is any harder to sell. As a company, your prices are based off of production costs and market demands. Affiliates should be aware of this and not expect 70% of your price every time they make a sale.

A High Rating

If you are looking through a database of affiliates (like ClickBank), make sure that you know how to tell a great marketer from one that just looks great. A good number to focus on, and one all affiliates should provide, is the number of conversions a week. Be a little wary, however. Many affiliates get lucky with a great product and are given the opportunity to give it at a great discount, meaning their conversions that week are going to be much higher than they might be dealing with any other product. See if the database offers you the option of looking at each affiliate’s rating history.

As affiliates develop and see more traffic, their rating will natural climb. Beware of affiliates that jump up and down the scale. You have no way of predicting where on that scale you are going to fall. Just because an affiliate is having a great week doesn’t mean that next week, when they start pushing your product, that they might not see the kind of traffic or give it the kind of effort you need to really see an increase in sales.

Sales Examples

Most affiliates will provide examples of their previous promotions, meaning you can get an idea of what kind of advertisement they will craft for your product. If you don’t like their style, it is best to walk away. Affiliates have a lot of freedom do hock your product however they see fit, so if you think they have been disrespectful with previous items, or just don’t provide what you’re looking for, don’t bother setting them up with your product, even if they have a great track record.

As with any kind of marketing, you have to be concerned about the public face of your company, and what kind of advertising you want out there in the world. If an affiliate’s style just isn’t right for the culture of your company, there’s no reason to invest your time in that affiliate.

Also, if you are searching a database, look at how each affiliate markets themselves, especially if they do not provide examples readily. Affiliates who enthusiastically market their business are more likely to be enthusiastic as they market your business.

Cost per Acquisition

Some companies do not necessarily need an affiliate to market a specific product or service, but instead want more emails for their mailing list or just more organic traffic to their website. There is a realm of affiliate marketing called cost per acquisition (CPA), which pays the affiliate every time one of their site visitors clicks on an embedded link through to your company page. It can be modified to pay only when they provide their phone number, zip code, or email address, as well.

These programs are best for companies looking for more hype. Plus, sometimes all you need is someone to see your website and your great products for a sale to be made. CPA affiliates usually make $1 per click, though some will even make as little as $.25 per click.

Consider whether you need a CPA program or a commission-centric, product-based program carefully, as each has its strengths and weaknesses. Which you choose will depend on the needs of your company, and what you ultimate hope to accomplish through your affiliate. CPA gives both you and affiliates more freedom, and the cost is much lower. However, the affiliate may, depending on your agreement, receive payment whether or not the click results in a sale, making the conversion rate lower. The advertisement is more general, though, not stuck on one specific product. However, if there is a specific product or service you need to promote, a commission program would be more appropriate.

Terms of Agreement

Whichever program you ultimately choose, make sure you have the degree of control over the result affiliate advertisement that you need or want. You may be perfectly happy to give your affiliate all the information they need and let them run with their ideas. Or you may want to even write your own blog post and just have them put it up on their blog with your encoded link. Before jumping in with both feet, make sure the terms of the contract between you and the affiliate will fully meet your needs. Videos may work for some products, but not others, in the same way that blog posts are great for some things, but not others. And again, never let an affiliate, just because of their “style,” take your advertisement in a direction that you believe to be wrong for your company.

What Is Affiliate Marketing?

Affiliate MarketingMany to most of you already know what affiliate marketing is, and use affiliate campaigns to monetize your website.  This post is for the members of the community who still need to know… “What is affiliate marketing?”  For those just interested in who I recommend, scroll to the bottom and click one of my affiliate links.

Since the advent of the internet, affiliate marketing has been used not only as a hub of information and files, but also of commerce.  With this new realm of commerce came a new challenge for marketers and the brands they work for. They quickly realized that getting noticed on the internet is very different from getting noticed on any other media.  Internet users, almost from the get-go, had a shorter attention span (have I lost you yet?) and a greater desire to be entertained, rather than informed.

As more and more types of internet marketing came into being, affiliate marketing began to take its place among the most common and most profitable.

Affiliate Marketing Basics

Affiliate marketing has three equally important sectors, all of whom work together for the profit or benefit of each other part. The three members of this symbiotic relationship are the company, the affiliate, and the customer. The company is whatever business which has a product or service that they want to promote. The affiliate is a third-party (non-company) website (I’m talking about you niche site builders), which promotes that product or service, either through written materials or through videos, animation, or other media. The customer is the viewer of the advertisements, the potential buyer or investor. As the industry has grown, there are now companies that manage their own affiliate marketing sites, as well as massive affiliate sites called affiliate networks.  Some experts contend that these are a category all their own, but as they still technically qualify as affiliates, this is what we will call them.

The most basic definition of affiliate marketing is that you the publisher (affiliate) will be compensated by a company for promoting a product or service. The affiliate earns a commission every time someone clicks on the link on the affiliate website through to the company’s website, and then performs an action of some sort… usually a purchase. Some companies and affiliates set up a contract where the affiliate will be rewarded if the site visitors fill out a survey, take a poll, or provide their email addresses for a list, but most often it is when the visitor makes a purchase.

How It Works

On the affiliate webpage, the company provides a link embedded with specific code, which tracks, through internet cookies, how many referred visitors the company sees as a result of clicks on that link. Companies can also provide a specific coupon code to an affiliate. They can track how many times that specific code is used while making purchases and they can reward the affiliate based on that number.

Inside the realm of affiliate marketing, the individual publishers can usually choose any strategy they prefer. This may be a video, encouraging the viewers to click on a provided link, or a blog post detailing the benefits of a specific product and a link to where it can be found. Many mega-bloggers or the YouTube famous are provided with special discount codes for their fans to use when purchasing something.  Netflix has especially jumped on this bandwagon recently, providing specialized coupon codes to YouTube stars, allowing their fans to purchase subscriptions at a discounted rate.

Why it Works

The world consumer is becoming increasingly aware of traditional marketing tactics.  This isn’t just because Mad Men has let inside the mysterious and complicated world of marketing firms.  It is because we are becoming more aware of ourselves as consumers, and more aware of the methods corporations use to get us to buy their products. There are whole college/university classes dedicated to deciphering the underlying message of advertising, and how to avoid being swayed. Critical consumerism, it is called, learning to make conscious product choices, based on facts, rather than on who has the cleverest slogan.  (those meanies!)

Because of this new awareness, companies have begun to try new methods, more guerilla tactics. And while these new strategies give the corporation less control over their own advertisements, they get more honest exposure. Any website that has high publisher to reader/viewer interaction means that hundreds, thousands, even millions of people will not only hear about a company, but also hear why they should do business with that company. And there is almost no more effective way to gain trust among your customer base than to have someone they trust tell them you are a worthwhile company.

Can I Sell My Products Using Affiliate Marketing?

I should hope so!! Any company with a marketable product or service, with something that people will want to spend their money on, can profit from affiliate marketing. The costs of are lower, as you only have to pay for the advertisement when it actually works. Imagine if that was true for other types of marketing; like for example, if Coca-Cola only had to pay their advertising company every time someone walked past their sign and decided they wanted a Coke, and then also went and bought one.  Because you only have to pay when the advertisement actually works, you never have to pay for space or content that doesn’t directly and tangibly benefit your business.

Should You Become An Affiliate?

If you are a content publisher, looking to become an affiliate marketer, there are a few details that will either earn you success or cause you to fail.  Before you start marketing, you are going to need to have an established blog, website, or YouTube channel, that sees high levels of traffic every day. Then, you will need to find companies willing to use you as a marketer, or join an affiliate network. Sometimes, you will have to make them believe that you can improve their profits and bring them success. Remember, it doesn’t cost them anything unless you have a reader or viewership that is willing to participate in the marketing.

Affiliate marketing is developing and changing as fast as the internet itself. Whether you are a company or an affiliate, you need to be prepared to handle shifts in the market and in the online society.

What Affiliate Networks Do I Use? (showing referral fees when possible)

PeerflyPeerflyClickBank

Clickbank

 

 

 

Neverblue

neverblue

 

 

And of course Amazon.

MMWNS Episode #11: 7 Essential Questions For Niche Product Creation & 14 Business Lessons

Listen in iTunes

The Niche Site U Podcast

niche product

In today’s episode, we discuss 7 Essential Questions For Niche Product Creation & 14 Business Lessons.

Transcript may have some issues below… but you can get 99% of the info from it, and of course, I would prefer you download and listen to the podcast.

Adam Roseland Recording – MMWNS Episode # 11

Hey everybody! Welcome to another episode of the make money with niche sites podcast. I apologize for the long delay. Just a lot going on my personal life that, you know, I’m sure you don’t really care about, but at the end of the day it’s just keeping me away from doing what I need to be doing. My dad’s losing his eyesight which I think I mentioned in a previous podcast. So I’ve been taking my family out to see him.

Recently…I live in Philadelphia…recently, we got slammed with some rain storms and my basement went under water and when I say within 5 minutes it went from completely dry to completely soaked in which I was just unbelievably watching the water spread in which (little Louise) had ______ turned on a faucet in my basement and I just sat there helplessly watching. So if anybody here in Philadelphia, they know an affordable and effective water proofer, file me…shoot me an email.

But what I want to do is get to you guys with some important things and I know that we generally focus on niche sites and I know a lot of people, (a lot) of ties with that sense. But I think what happens is a lot of people get focused and zero in on specifically using Adsense to monetize rather than generating products or, you know, ebooks or anything like that and creating niches around them.

So today, what I wanna talk to you about is creating new products and/or services and how to really bring them to market. So the first thing I wanna focus on is when promoting a new product, what you need to do is identify unfulfilled customer needs, whether it be a faster service, better prices, superior quality, convenience, a personal service, a better guaranty, something like that.

You really need to start doing some research and you can do it internally with what you’re looking for as far as customers, or ask people, ask your family, ask you wife, ask your girlfriend, your boyfriend, your husband, your kids, you know. What are people looking for, you know? If they’re looking specifically at, you know, furniture… how do you improve furniture? How do you make a chair better, or say, is it having more swivel features? Is it having…you know, rollers or ______always said these are all (Belmont) chairs?

But the point is, you have to figure out a way to look at a product or service and find a way to improve about it. You don’t always have to come out with a brand new never before thought of idea. You just need to come to the table with a way of identifying an unfulfilled need and market towards it. So there are 7 essential questions, in my opinion, that you need to determine to see if a product is worthwhile to produce or bring to market.

The first one is obvious. It’s: Do I have a good idea? Now, the best way that I tried to figure out whether or not I have a good idea is, I actually come up with an idea, whether mowing the lawn or listening to a podcast or taking a shower. When I have an idea, what I want to do is I want to write it down because everything, first of all, loses its effectiveness if I forget it. But most importantly, when I put it on paper, I really have to start to figure out (on and on) exactly what I want that idea to be. And the reason I put it on paper is to make sure that again I don’t forget. I forget things, I come out with ideas, tender ideas now and I forget most of them. So, well I said I put it on paper it doesn’t necessarily (have) to be a writing it down kind of work (absolutely). It can be putting it down into a Word document or what I really like to do is put it on my calendar as an event and what I like to do is set that event 3 to 4 days earlier. So the hot idea is like “Wow, it’s great this thing is going to revolutionize the Internet. It’s the new phase for blah blah blah. Put it down on my calendar and 3 to 4 days later when I look at it, do I think it’s the same good idea? Has it lost any of the shine that it had originally or am I still really gung-ho about it? That way I’m not jumping into something that isn’t really an effective idea. It’s a… I’m not wasting money investing in research or time or anything like that. I’m just saying, alright well, in 3 days I’m going to review this topic and see if I like that idea still.

The second thing is, does it feel like it will work? Now having a good idea obviously makes sense, you know. When you say, hey you know, most good ideas you feel like…like it could all work, but really what I want you to do is, ask people if it feels like it would work. So if I’m coming up with some revolutionary idea or even a better way to, you know…a better faster mouse trap as they like to say, I want to ask my friends, my family, “Hey, what do you think?”  and don’t be afraid, honestly, don’t be afraid of people stealing your ideas. So many entrepreneurs that I know or one of the entrepreneurs that I know say, “Well, you know, I have ideas but I can’t really talk to you about them because I’m worried that, you know, if the idea gets out, somebody’s going to beat me to market.”

I got a news for you. Most people are very lazy. Nobody, nobody is interested in your idea. In lots of _____ it’s really just unbelievable and, you know, chances are pretty good that your product idea, not to be rude, isn’t going to be the new revolutionary social media option like Facebook. You’re not going to just all of a sudden create a YouTube. You’re gonna come up with an idea that’s pretty good and can make a lot of money, but it’s not a billion dollar idea, but it’s a business idea. And so don’t be afraid to share it with other people and get their feedback. Ask them, hey this…you know, “Here’s my idea. Does it sound like it’s something you’d be ______ today? Does it feel like it would work for you? If I made this product, would you buy it?”. And that’s the big thing. Does it sell like a good idea and would you buy it, a really kind of 2 different concepts and if you got that person to say “Yeah, I’d buy it, put a price on it that’ll be great.” “Well hey, you know what, I’m gonna be selling this for $99. Can I count on you for my first sale?”

You got to really figure out whether it’s a good idea that if somebody is like “Well, you know, hey, you know, it sounds like a good idea, but I got bills to pay…I got to invest in this or hey, I just had a redo…put a new ____ put in my face, but you really feel like…feel whether or not they think it’s a good idea but that they feel it’s going to work. So, I want you to figure out whether or not you think it’s gonna work.

The third thing is, are your sales targets realistic? Now, we’ve gone from a simple idea that you’ve hopefully written down on your calendar. You’ve put it down for a couple of days. You’ve slept on it. You keep coming back to it and you say, hey this is a great idea. Now you’ve asked some people like, hey, you know what, I like the idea best and I want to see your feedback. Do you think it can work? Is it a bad idea, you know. Give me some ideas on how to improve it and, more importantly, ( willing) to buy it.

Now you have to figure out what your sales targets are and by that, how many can you sell? How many people can you service during the course of the year or per month, per day and figure out whether those are realistic. One of my favorite things that I read about, you know, so much ______ that say, hey you know what? If I sell just 1% of these of my products or service to all the people who need it in the world or all the people in China or all women or all people in the City of Philadelphia, then I’m gonna make X amount of sales. Well guess what, 1% is a really big number for a brand new product. Now I know that 1% is small and people look at conversion rates for websites and if I get 1% of clicks on my Adsense, that will be great. But when you’re selling products, if you’re talking about 1% of all possible sales targets. Meaning like I’m gonna make a new, you know…a new type of jewelry for women. And if just 1% of women in Philadelphia buy it, guess what, 1% of women are gonna be interested in your jewelry. Well let’s just be honest. There’s gonna be people that have different tastes. They’re gonna have different economic situations, so you can’t use numbers like that. You really have to zero in on small, small numbers.

That brings me into the next set of subject which is # 4 of the 7 (scheduled) questions. # 4 is, can I afford to test the idea? Now I know building a niche site is very cheap and it’s very affordable. It’s just buying a domain, getting some hosting setup, investing some time and effort into putting out some articles. But when you’re talking about how to market a product or service, sometimes, it’s gonna be a little bit more than that. So can you afford to test out the idea? And paying the testing is the most important thing you can do before really starting to invest into a new product.

So before you invest a couple of thousand dollars in production of this, you know, this great new type of sneaker, I want you to really think. Can you afford to make, you know, a thousand of those products? Because if you do go to market and you find out that there are people that are… just aren’t buying and you still have a need to sell, then your product, your service is gonna just fail. And you also need to able to say, hey, if I make a thousand of these and nobody buys them, am I gonna be able to pay my mortgage? Am I gonna be able to send my kids to school? Am I gonna be able to eat? Because if you can’t afford to test the idea, then it’s really not that good an idea. And bottom line – if it’s a good enough idea, you can always get investors. So when you say, hey, you know, are you willing to buy that $99 product that’ll make you my first customer? If that ______ option, would you be (more able) to invest on that side yet? So make sure that you can get financing to invest and test the idea.

The next thing, # 5 is, do I know the basic tests that need to be done? So let’s just talk about coming to market with the new product. You know, there’s a lot of things other than just getting a website up to get people to buy your product. If you’re gonna be looking at manufacturing shoes or manufacturing anything or if it’s a service that you provide, you know, if you’re getting into the lawn pavement sector, you know, do you have the people and do you know the tasks that need to be done? So alright well, if I’m going to set up a lawn care company, do I have the ingredients that I need to, you know, to put into the lawn to get greener grass? Do I have a…you know…do I have the machinery that I need? Do I have the know-how of what I’m supposed to be doing and do I have the means to get to more than one person per day? That’s a…you know… that’s obviously…leading to the next thing which is, do I have the people who can do these tests? Do I have enough people or staff to do these tests? Do I have to do them myself or do I need 50 people or staff? Do I need just another secondary person to help out on weekend? You need to know what the basic tests are for the project and you need to know, do I have the people who can do the tests. That’s actually numbers 5 and 6.

The final and most important thing I think of when starting a new product or service, and this is # 7…it’s the final one, is, do I have a Plan B, an Exit Plan, in case my good idea turns out to be a bad one? So, think about that. My idea seems like a good idea in my head. It seems like a good idea to a batch of my friends. I made realistic sales targets. I can afford to test the idea so I have some money in the bank and I’m raring to go and test it. I know what the basic tests are that need to be done. I know how many people I need to do these tests. But now that I’m going to market it and it turns out, you know what, it wasn’t that great idea or was a good idea but just didn’t market well and it’s failing, do I have a Plan B? Can I reassess how to do what I’m doing and find an alternative? Can I reapply some of the inventory to another product or another service? Do I have an Exit Plan, you know? Am I going to try and sell this now that I invested all these money into it? Can I sell it for half of it to somebody that might be interested? Just finding a way to having a Plan B is the first thing that you need to do before you actually start working on Plan A and ____. No one ____ Exit Plan. Any website I built, I always have an Exit Plan. Any new service, new company that I’m building, I always have an exit plan and you should too.

So… the 7 essential questions to determine if a product is worthwhile to produce or to take to market is, do I have a good idea, do I feel like it will work, are my sales targets realistic, can I afford to test the idea, do I know the basic tests that need to be done, do I have the people who can do the tests, and in my opinion most importantly, do I have a Plan B, an Exit Plan, in case my good idea turns out to be a bad one?

So now that we’ve covered some essential questions that you need to ask yourself, I want to talk about some lessons. I’ve got actually 14 lessons that I think are pretty important. And these are just culminated from reading books, from actually starting businesses, from running businesses profitably and running some businesses into the ground. I want you to just take these into consideration. So there’s 14 lessons.

The first lesson is: Your customers don’t care about you or your business. They care about themselves. My business partner and I built websites for, you know, for core pieces of our business. We do a live digital marketing. But we do a lot of websites and one of the things that he and I actually battle a lot about (Jay Smith) ______ thing, you know, we talked about this a little while last night, is, customers still care about who we are. They don’t care about my business. They don’t care about who I work with or what I’m doing. They care about themselves. They wanna be able to tell their friends that they’ve got a beautiful new website. They wanna tell (to) show their friends that they’ve a beautiful new website. They wanna know that they got a deal on their website. They wanna know that they have the best people in the world and that…includes, you know, people knowing about who you are and your business but they won’t be able to tell people, hey, I used the best company in the world about…you know, to build my website. So just understand that they’re not concerned about you. They’re concerned about themselves.

Lesson 2: A small portion of your customer base is always gonna be giving you the lion’s share of your profits. Most of you may know this is the 80-20 rule, or Pareto Principle. Basically what it means is that 20% of your clients will generally give you 80% of your revenue. This applies to just about anything in life, in my opinion. But a small portion of your customer base is gonna give you the lion’s share of your profits. So, Tim Ferriss talks about this with a 4-hour work week where he was firing customers because they were taking up too much time and not generating enough revenue for him. Something you consider when you start to streamline your business is, how much of your money is coming from how many of your clients and are you giving them the right amount of customer service or giving them the value that they deserve?

Lesson # 3: Understand why it is that your customers buy from you. Is it because you have the best customer service, is it because you have the best product, is it because you have the best pricing, is it because of your location? Understand why customers are buying from you. So if you’re writing ebooks, is it because of the quality of the content, is it because it’s short, is it because it’s long, is it because of the pricing? Things like that are really critical in understanding why your customers are buying from you and, more importantly, how to sell more.

# 4 is, always, always, always try to track as many sales transactions as you can, but understand that every single one of those begins with the process of generating a lead. So it’s great to know that it’s…you made a sale. But where did that lead come from? Did it come from your friend, your neighbor, your website, from an ad you placed in the newspaper, from media placement that you have on a specific website? Is it from a link that you generated on a website? Is it from a television commercial that you created? Understand that you have to sit and track your sales, but most importantly, understand where they’re coming from. Leads are more important than sales because leads turn into sales.

# 5 which I’m not gonna go too deep into is, learn multichannel marketing. If you don’t know what it is, I want you to google it. Get a feel for what it is. It’s really critical for business.

Lesson # 6: Follow the golden rule of marketing, which is treat customers the way you want to be treated. Bottom line – if you’re not taking care of your customers the way you expect to be treated when you go into a store or use a service, then you’re doing yourself a disservice because you’re not taking care of customers the way you want to be and that’s the critical piece to making sure that customers become repeat customers.

Lesson #7: Remember that there’s pretty much 4 key elements of great marketing. The first one is having a big idea. The second one is a big benefit. The third is a big promise and the fourth is proof. So with any more kidding effort that you put out, whether it’s in your website copy or if it’s in a, you know… an advertisement that you placed in a newspaper or television or radio or it’s a banner advertisement or a billboard, it’s got to have a big idea, a big benefit to the client, a big promise of what you’re gonna do for that client and proof that it works.

Lesson # 8: Understand that customer complaints and objections are the key to better selling. They are a blessing. If somebody is taking the time and effort and energy to complain about your service or product, they care enough that you should listen. And bottom line – when somebody objects to what you’re trying to sell them, find out why. When somebody says No, find out why. This will help you to become a better seller. It gives you an opportunity to make up for any (botched) sales and if somebody already bought it and they’re complaining, this gives you an opportunity to make the customer happy, but most importantly, that same objection or same complaint is gonna come up again and again and again, and if you don’t take energy and effort to fulfill whatever that complaint was, that problem, if you don’t, correct it, you’re not gonna become a better seller and more importantly, you’re not gonna sell as many products and, therefore, you’ll have less profit.

Lesson # 9: Maintain a no-dead-end policy on products, meaning, once you sell products, always, always, always try to have another product or service that you can offer them. So figure out what else can you sell somebody. If you’re selling an ebook, find a way to get that email address obviously and then sell another product to recommend another product for your affiliate marketing in a product later on. Never ever just do a wantonly done sales pitch. Always, always, always try and find a secondary and a third way to sell to people down the road.

Lesson # 10: Every single product that you create or every service that you have needs its own unique selling proposition and its own branding. Now that doesn’t mean that if you offer 3 different products that they can’t be similar in brand, look and feel, but they need to have their own brand awareness. Meaning that Coke Zero and Coke have 2 different brands and 2 completely unique selling propositions. And you need to understand that’s the same thing with your products and services. Yeah, I know you’re not Coke, but if you’re gonna do lawn care and, you know, tree trimming, they are 2 different things and they need to be promoted differently and they need to have different branding and they really need to make sure that there’s something unique about each one of those.

Lesson #11: Try to understand the core buying motives of customers. Now, this goes back to some things that we talked about earlier about understanding why your customers buy from you but it’s really different. When I say the customer is buying from you because of price or because of your location or because of the service, there’s a motive behind that. The motive, meaning that if they buy because of low price, it means that they don’t have a lot of money. And maybe your core set of prospects is at a lower class and they don’t have a lot of money. And that’s why your low pricing is important. Or if people are coming to you because you’re geographically desirable, understand that their buying motive is that people will travel far for your service or product so that you need to make sure that you’re only fishing in that smaller fish pond than, you know, going out…in Philadelphia. I don’t need to waste my efforts selling in California if I know that my product or service is a geographically desirable thing where it’s got to be local. So understand that every product is gonna have to have a ____. Every customer is gonna have some kind of core buying motive behind them and you need to figure out what it is.

Lesson # 12: Practice reciprocity with customers. So the idea is, give more, get more. If you…you know, one thing that I’ve learned a long time ago is that if you give something away to somebody, they’re going to feel the need to actually give something back to you in the form of business or in the form of leads or referrals. So whenever I can, I give clients and prospects whatever I can. When I make a pitch to somebody in this _______ we talk(ed) about, if I’m pitching a website to them and they’re not sure if they want to use my company or if there’s no other (service), I tell them, hey, please use me as a resource. Even if you’d go with another company, feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions about digital marketing. If you have questions about the other company that you’re looking at. I want you to come to me so that I can give you something, so that you feel a lot (obligated) to give me something in return. But I’m not allowed to say it that way. But I want them to feel the need to give me something back because I gave them something first. It’s the simple law of reciprocity. If you guys read every persuasion book, it’s right out there in front of the (clear) laws of persuasion, law of reciprocity and if we give more, we get more.

#13: Be confident and enthusiastic when you sell. Now this again is more of an offline situation, but nobody ever buys products unless (if) they absolutely have to have it and there’s no other salesman to sell it to them. They never buy products from somebody that’s not confident or enthusiastic about what they’re selling. And I’m not saying that you have to be jumping off the walls and, you know, pretending that, you know, it’s the greatest product in the world. But you need to believe in what you’re doing. If you don’t believe in what you’re selling, you need to stop selling it. And if you’re not confident that your product or service is good, then you need to stop selling it because quite frankly, people can see that. They understand quickly that you’re not enthusiastic and that’s why you’re not making sales. So if you don’t believe in what you’re doing and you’re not enthusiastic about what you’re doing and you’re not confident that you have the right product for your customers, stop selling it today and go find something else to do. It will save you time and effort and you’ll find something down the road that you are enthusiastic in and you’ll make more sales.

The final lesson is, don’t push or bribe customers. I talked about giving more to get more but that doesn’t mean bribes or ______. Don’t push…don’t be pushy and don’t make bribes to get more customers. Trust me and…it’s one of those good…you know, good things come to those that do the right thing more, you know. If you wanna take good (karma) ______ people like to do good things. Whatever it is, I believe that if you take care of your customers and provide the right service and you’re doing it with a true and honest heart that you’re gonna get the business and if you start to be pushy or if you start to try and bribe customers, it just doesn’t work out.

So, lessons again 1-14:

Lesson #1 – Your customers don’t care about your business. They care about themselves.

Lesson #2 – A small portion of your customer base is giving you the lion’s share of your profits.

Lesson #3 – Understand why your customers are buying from you.

Lesson #4 – Almost every sales transaction begins with the process of generating leads.

Lesson #5 – Learn multichannel marketing.

Lesson #6 – Follow the golden rule in marketing. Treat customers the way you want to be treated.

Lesson #7 – Remembering the 4 key elements of great marketing – big idea, big benefit, big promise, big proof.

Lesson #8 – Understand that customer complaints and objections are the key to better selling.

Lesson #9 – Maintain a no-dead-end policy on products. What else can you sell them?

Lesson #10 – Every product needs its own unique selling proposition and own branding.

Lesson #11 – Try to understand the core buying motives of customers.

Lesson #12 – Practice reciprocity with customers. Give more to get more.

Lesson #13 – Be confident and enthusiastic when you sell, and

Lesson #14 –  Don’t push or bribe customers.

Well, that’s gonna do it for today’s show. I really appreciate you taking the time and energy for joining me and listen to this podcast. As usual, I encourage you to visit my website, makemoneywithnichesites.com. Leave a comment. Tell me what you want to hear. If you have any questions or concerns, by all means, put them down there in the contact form so I can produce better shows for you.

I do have a couple of things coming up. I have another interview for you that I promised a while back. I’ve (just got to) the editing. That will be the next podcast I’d produce and I do have some listener questions that I want to go through. So I’m giving another chance to put out some emails to me for listener questions, things that you want to have discussed on the podcast.

And now that my kids are gonna be going back to school and I’ll have a…an empty house again, I’ll be able to get back to more posting and more podcasts on a regular basis. So thanks for your patience and thank you again for taking the time to share with me the…after allowing me to share with you some feedback and some thoughts on how to make more money with niche sites.

You guys have an excellent day.

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Niche Sites Community Update

I have been out on vacation recently, so I wanted to provide a niche sites community update.  Some of you know that I am a family man first… and businessman second.  I take great pride in getting involved in my children’s activities, and I coach many of my son’s sports.  We just finished up tournament season for baseball, and football season begins next week.  Once that starts, I am completely jammed with 4 practices a week, and no time for vacation, which is why I have been heading to the beach when possible. I also recently visited with my dad who’s eyesight is failing, so that he could see me and my kids before his eyes completely give up on him.  Im sure very little of that matters to you, but that is why I haven’t posted that much, and is the reason for this post.

Because I have had lots of time to relax and read, I wanted to share with you some of the things I found around the web that I thought deserved to be shared.  While I don’t follow most of these sites, I did stumble upon them from others I do follow and recommendations.  I hope you enjoy the content and learn from them!

11 SEO Experts Share Actionable Link Building Tips

This is a roundup post that discusses strategies from 11 of the more popular SEO minds today.  Link building topics include broken link building, infographics, guest posting, google+ and more.  Some of the more popular names here are Brian Dean (who I just interviewed here about niche site link building), Jon Cooper, David O’Donnell, and Jason Acidre.

You can check out the full article here: http://backlinks.com.au/11-seo-experts-share-actionable-link-building-tips/

Discover what content curation is, its challenges, and how to use it to improve your social media branding.

If you are like me, you find that everyday seems to be getting shorter and shorter, and there is never enough time to accomplish everything on your task list.  The reason I am writing this post is two fold… the first, is that I didn’t have time.  The second, is that I thought this article provided me with a good idea for a post.  Content curation is becoming more and more popular, and here are a bunch of infographics to show you what it is and how to do it properly.

Content Marketing Pyramid

You can check out the full article here: http://socialmediatoday.com/index.php?q=pamdyer/1595451/5-content-curation-infographics

The Psychology of Color in Marketing and Branding

I am a huge fan of persuasion techniques.  Robert Cialdini’s book Influence rocked my world and showed me how much impact little things can have on events.  For instance, one of my favorite studies is where a researcher had a person cut in line at the copier machine.  Don’t quote me, but the success rate for cutting in line was like 60%.  Then, the researcher told the person cutting to use the word “because”, like… I need to go before you “because” I need to make a copy.  Astonishingly, the success rate changed to over 90%!  Crazy, I know.

Color Emotion Guide

Well this article is about the impact of color on your marketing efforts.  Did you know that changing the color of your submit/subscribe/buy now button can change conversion rates?  Well, it can.

Check out the real deal of how the right color can make your niche site more money: https://www.helpscout.net/blog/psychology-of-color/

A scientific guide to writing great headlines on Twitter, Facebook and your Blog

Did you know that photos get more facebook likes, shares and engagement?  Neither did I until I read this article.  This is a scientific look at how to write a great headline that will get more clicks, and which words you should include in your tweets to increase the chances that it will be retweeted on Twitter.  For instance, please retweet is number 11 on the list of best words/phrases to use.  Free is number 8.  It should be know shock to those of you who know how selfish people are… that the number 1 word was “you”.

Photos Get More Likes

Check out for yourself how to write a more engaging headline for social media here:  http://blog.bufferapp.com/a-scientific-guide-to-writing-great-headlines-on-twitter-facebook-and-your-blog

How Failure Made These Entrepreneurs Millions

Im a huge fan of success stories.  Every success story has failure in it somewhere… and this article covers a few great ways to look at failure.  It is a quick read, but has some gems in it like “The bigger they are, the more they’ve typically failed.”

Learn more from the full article here: http://www.youngentrepreneur.com/blog/how-failure-made-these-entrepreneurs-millions/

 

Hope you enjoy these as much as I did.

MMWNS Episode #10: Interview With Brian Dean – Niche Site Link Building

Listen in iTunes

The Niche Site U Podcast

Niche Site Back LinkingIn this episode of the How To Make Money With Niche Sites Podcast, I interview Brian Dean of http://backlinko.com to discuss SEO, Niche Sites, Niche Site Link Building, and most importantly, find out some of his secrets to his rapid success.

This is a longer podcast, but WELL WORTH IT!!  I was considering cutting it into two parts, but felt that wouldn’t be fair to hold back this juicy content.

If you do only one thing today…

I suggest you read this for niche site link building: http://backlinko.com/link-building, then go subscribe to his email list.

Show Notes and transcript being worked on and added slowly, please be patient and I apologize for the less than perfect transcription, I am testing out Dragon’s Naturally Speaking Software.