Here’s How to Get a HUGE Jump on Creating an Amazing Year in Your Business…

At any time of the year, it’s important for one to stop and take a look and access your year: where you are or aren’t in your business? Do you like what you see? What issues are raising your anxiety level? How is your bottom line? Have you achieved all the goals you set in January? If not, then why?

Now these questions can cause a lot of emotional pain and angst but they don’t have to. Why not see them as opportunities instead? And as an opportunity these exact issues could bring you more money in the bank. And who doesn’t need this?

So how can you turn these issues into opportunities and get a huge jump on the year? By one simple thing: Send out a Survey to your list. Don’t wait for another year to get back on the right track. Do it now,  create a survey and send it out to your clients and prospects. It’s actually THE best way to find out what your clients think about products, services, newsletter, website, membership, etc.  Also it’s a terrific way to see what they like, what they don’t and what they’d like to see more of from you.

I gave up trying to guess what my clients and prospects needs were years ago. And in my business and in the clients I’ve worked with, we’ve found whenever we had challenges and were not sure in what direction to go in I suggested, “Let’s do a survey.” And believe it or not every time we would do one we got amazing results which were just the answers we needed.

It’s really simple to do a survey.  The quick and easy method is to:

  1. Be clear on your goals for the survey – what’s the info you absolutely need to find out.
  2. Figure out who you want to send it to – is it best to send out to your whole list, or maybe just your customers? Or maybe it’s customers of a certain product (or service) that they purchased from you.
  3. Create your 4 – 5 simple questions. Check out this last post to get my BEST questions to ask-
  4. Get a Survey Monkey or Survey Gizmo online survey account and put your questions in there.
  5. Create a few emails and send out your survey to your list.
  6. Close the survey within 7 days or when you’ve had enough responses
  7. Analyze your results and use them in your business.  This is the HUGE part that will help create your 2011. Your results will help shape your business, your products, services, etc., depending upon what you’ve asked in your survey.

Don’t downplay doing a survey in your business. It really is THE most simple and easy way to ensure you’re creating products, services and really meeting the needs of your clients and prospects on your list.

If you want to know more about creating and implementing surveys in your business, get instant free access to this video: “17 Clever Ways That You Will Never Have To Guess Again What Your Prospects & Customers Want”.  I promise, this will be REALLY helpful for you. Hope to see you soon!

The Anatomy of Creating a Survey

Over the last couple of weeks, we have gone over steps how to know what your clients/customers want through creating surveys and writing out our questions.  Today, I want to put all that information together and show you the anatomy of a survey.  Other people might try to make this process really complicated or complex, yet the process is REALLY simple. And if you follow this process, I promise, you will discover EXACTLY what your customers want and then all that’s left to do is to create it!  So after you’ve created your survey- here’s what you need to think about and plan:

Survey Time Frame

In order to get the best response from your prospects, the lifespan of a successful survey is between 7 to 10 days.  Think about this 7 to 10 days time frame as a mini launch.  By keeping this prospective, you will be able to plan every single detail to make this successful.

Communication

By setting up the time frame of 7 to 10 days, you will want to send out 5 – 6 emails throughout this time.  Try to avoid emailing everyday, which could be viewed as spam.  Instead, try to send an email every other day.  Within these emails, you will want to include:

  • Why you need their help
  • Focus on your gift you want to give them (See more below)
  • A Short & Sweet Reminder about completing the survey with the link at least twice in the email
  • Always add a P.S. to your emails

The key to remember about the communication part of this process is make each email compelling so your prospects will provide you with good, solid feedback.

The Gift

Always give a gift to those who answer your survey. It is the best way to not only motivate but also to thank them.  Time is a gift to most people and therefore you want to reward them for giving you some of their precious time.  The best gift idea is something of value and compelling that you think they would want.  I like it to be electronic so it’s easily downloaded- like an eBook, eReport, MP3 audio, video, etc.

Analyzing

The last part of this process is a favorite of mine-maybe because I am a true survey geek!  All your prospects have turned in their surveys and now it is time to dig into their responses.  .  In fact, if you have used a survey tool like Survey Monkey or Zoomerang, they make analysis SO easy.  I love these tools because they do ALL the number crunching FOR YOU!  In addition, they put them in these cool graphs too.

So take advantage of your online survey tool and crunch your numbers, really taking the time to read all your date.  Pay special and close attention to all your open-ended answers.  And then use the information in your business, in your marketing—USE IT!  That’s why you created it and sent it out. So many people forget about it and don’t use that information—it’s a goldmine- use it!

Want more information about using surveys in your business? Check out—www.NeverGuessAgain.com

Already know you want to invest in a program that will show you exactly how to create surveys and use them in your business so you know exactly what your customers want?  Check out my interview with Bill Glazer where we discuss how to give your customers EXACTLY what they want.

 

 

How to Ask Questions in the Right Order

You know the whole chicken egg theory, what came first.  Well when you’re creating your questions for a survey, this can also be true.  Experts argue whether you should ask demographic information up front, at the end, or not at all.  Then others argue about whether they should be optional to answer or not.

What I know after doing surveys for over 20 years, is that the right order of your questions does matter.  And the best order I’ve found is to:

  • Ask easier questions first
  • Move into more complicated questions that flow
  • End with asking easier questions again.

For example, do they get your newsletter, will they want the product as an online course, or as a printed book with audio and videos?  So, you would start off asking questions like:

1)    Which of these materials do you receive from me each month? —- List multiple choice of all they might receive from you—like a printed newsletter, eNewsletter, weekly email, monthly phone call, etc.

2)    If you receive our newsletter, what in particular attracted you to sign up for it? You could leave this open ended or you could give them a list of 4 – 5 reasons of why they receive it and they can either check one or check all.

3)    “If we were to offer a specific training and product around —– how likely would you be to purchase?” (Or you could say, rate how interested you would be to purchase it.)  On this type of question you’d add a 5 point scale to gauge their interest level, from highly likely to least likely and the points in between.

4)    “We’re considering creating an online course, and would love your feedback. What type of training would be most helpful to you?”  Here you would then add some multiple choices for them to choose, like only online course, or an online course with live monthly coaching, etc.

It’s all about order, you start off asking easier questions. It’s best when one question flows into the next.  Also I find it’s easier to END with the simple questions like the demographic information that is SO helpful to get on surveys so you can get a good snapshot of “who’s” answering your survey. Here are some examples:

 You are:Female
Male
 What is your age range? Under 20

20-24

25-29

30-39

40-49

50-59

60-69

70-79

80+

These types of demographic questions are terrific to add to your survey and I find them best to put at the end.  Some folks prefer to put them at the beginning, I honestly don’t think it makes a difference. And I have had them required to answer and optional.  If you really want to know the info, than don’t make it optional. However, do your best to keep the survey anonymous, this way you will be assured the information is truthful. Again, the order of your survey is important because it has to flow from start to finish. And your questions are key, they need to be easy to understand and answer and you can build off of each question. This way those that respond will be able to get through answering your questions quickly and won’t quit in the middle or from the start because they’re confused or the questions are just too complicated.

If you need help or want to discover  more about using surveys in your business- go to –  Never Guess Again

It’s All About the Questions

There is a quote by Albert Einstein that says “If you can’t explain it simply, then you don’t understand it well enough.”

This quote says it all when it comes to the topic of this week’s blog.

It’s ALL About the Questions!

This is actually STEP 2 – AFTER you figure out your goals and outcomes of what you want from doing your survey. Creating questions for your survey products is incredibly important because it will shape the answers you will receive and ULTIMATELY what you will be able to do with that information.  Through this questioning process you will step closer to finding success in your business.

Step # 2 –It’s ALL About the Questions!

When you are coming up with questions, there are SO MANY types of questions to choose from. So let’s start with this— phrase:

“Short, Sweet & to the Point”

One way to keep questions “Short, Sweet & to the Point” is to use open-ended ones. These are the questions that will bare the most fruit for you in your surveys.  A lot of researchers and statisticians don’t particularly like open ended questions because they are the most difficult to measure because each answer is unique, so when sifting through 10k open ended answers, it can be overwhelming in going through all of them. So I highly recommend using open ended questions when you:

1.  Want detailed information in the respondent’s voice

2.  Don’t have good solid answers to create a multiple-choice—because a lot of times you can miss an answer because you didn’t give them one they would have chose. (When you create multiple-choice you’re forcing them to answer your answers that you’ve created.)

The real key to using open ended questions is they can really help not only shape your business, products, etc.; they can also shape YOUR MARKETING.  They write the answers in their voice and will give you key words and key phrases that you can use when you market to them.

Here are some guidelines for you to keep in mind as you create your questions.

1.  Are you questions short or wordy?

  • Simple and concise words are the best to use

2.  5th Grade is your target when it comes to the understanding level.

  • Do not make assumptions
  • Everyone needs to understand them

3.  Stay Away From Complicated.

  • Complication will lead to people not wanting to participate in your survey

4.  Keep your goal and the main thing you want to achieve in mind.

Next week, I am going to take you deeper into how to create those easy and inviting questions that will give you the answers to help shape your business.

PLUS– FREE 60 Minute One On One Call with ME!

If you’ve made it all the way down here to the bottom, thanks for reading, and here’s a gift for you. I want to give you 60 minutes of my time for free, with my compliments.   Maybe you’re:

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Well, here’s the deal, you’re in the right place. I can help you!  Just click here. I want to give you a  FREE 60 minute call with me. I’d love to see how I can help you create the business you so deserve and helping you help thousands more people.

Solving the Mystery of What Your Clients Want

Whether you are an entrepreneur or working directly with clients starting from scratch with a new idea is hard, especially when it comes to creating new products. Knowing exactly what your clients need and are looking for is pretty much like a guessing game.

Unless… you know the secret of predicting exactly what your clients want and are looking for.  Today, I am going to share that secret with you.

In fact, it is extremely simple…all you have to do is ASK THEM. The key to this “Secret” is realizing the core of what your clients or prospects want lies in doing a survey—asking a series of questions:

  1. What do they want?
  2. What are their biggest challenges?
  3. What keeps them awake at night?
  4. Based on the above information, what new tools should we create for them?
  5. What is the best format for these products/tools? Online? Printed? Audio/Video?

By doing a survey, it is more than a client asking random questions.   It is about the whole survey process, which includes:

  • Figuring out the goals of your survey and what you want to accomplish with it
  • Implementing the whole survey process
  • Getting a Big Response
  • Using your Results in your business

Over the next few weeks, I will share my secret with you as well as the entire process that goes with it.

Commit to Your Plan to Create Success

I was recently listening to a panel discussion made up of several well known marketing experts and one of the panelists said something that really jumped
out at me.

The panelist was Jay Conrad Levinson who is known as “The Father of Guerilla Marketing.”  He said that he believed “…a mediocre marketing program with commitment will always prove more profitable than a brilliant marketing program without commitment. Commitment makes it happen.”

As soon as I heard that I knew he was right… but I was not really sure why.  So I thought about it for a while and came to a conclusion.

Commitment is when you—

Create a marketing program – good or bad – and then commit to it.

Include the message in all your communication.

Know everyone in your organization follows the program.

Give your customers the same marketing message from you over and over for a long period of time.

Send regular emails, or a newsletter, or have a blog.

Then something happens…You create consistency. This consistency then creates a feeling of trust for you in your customers.

A few weeks ago in my post The “Oprah Factor” and how you can create your own “ X Factor” I talked about the trust that Oprah’s fans feel with her and how this led to very strong and deep emotions they felt about her and this in turn led to the tremendous influence her opinions have on her audience.

Let’s face it.  There is a lot of uncertainty in the world right now.  Your customers are craving consistency and dependability.  They are looking for people to do business with they can rely on.

What you need to do is to develop a strategic marketing plan and commit to it.

If you haven’t created one, or I you’re not sure where to start with developing a marketing plan, I always suggest of course surveying your customers.  Even a very short questionnaire with one or two questions about what they are worried about, what keeps them awake at night, or struggling with right now in their business, will give you a great starting place to build your marketing plan.  Here’s where you can get more info and examples about surveying your customers.  www.createamazingsurveys.com/replay.html

And if you need more help, this is what I do with my clients— create marketing roadmaps/plans for them so they can have a more successful business.  Click here for more info. www.marketingimplementer.com/uploads/Find_Hidden_Money_Article_App.pdf

Whose Shoes Are You Walking In?

Your customers, (this includes those that have not bought anything from you but who have read your blog and subscribed to your newsletter or visited your website) look to you for help, motivation, advice, entertainment, and valuable information.

To really do this effectively you have to walk in your customers shoes.

Everyday I encounter businesses that really miss the mark on this.

One way to really get this is to BE your customer.  Go to your website, cruise it like a potential customer, sign up for your optins. Even better, get your friends, colleagues, and those that work for you to do the same.  Have them document what they see and how they feel during the experience.  There’s a lot to be said about doing this. In fact there’s a huge business that focuses just on that and it’s called “mystery shoppers,” having someone pose as a potential customer and they document their experience. This works well in bricks and mortar places like dentist offices or doctor’s offices.  By doing this, you will be very surprised by the results.  In fact, you could take it one step further and create a short survey for anyone to answer who you ask to go to your website, your newsletter, etc., and get them to document their experience on your survey. For more information about surveys and how to use them to make more money in your business— www.CreateAmazingSurveys.com

What I would recommend is that you start paying closer attention to your own everyday encounters with other businesses, colleagues, bosses, or clients that are either less than satisfactory or extremely pleasant. Really be aware of your own thoughts and reactions when you are annoyed or frustrated or if you find yourself very impressed.

Anytime you encounter something that starts to make the little hairs on the back of your head stand-up, stop and think about why.  What is causing your reaction?  It could be something that seems to be very small but is in actuality significant.

Maybe you are trying to download a free report and you are being asked to fill out a lengthy form to get it.

Or you sent and email to someone and they only responded back with one or two words because they are on their mobile device.

Or you get asked for your zip code at a particular store every time you buy something, even a pack of gum.

Or you visit a website for the first time and immediately get a popup asking you to rate your experience before you even have a chance to look at the site.

Now think about what the other party could have done to make the encounter better for you and really make you eager to return or do business with them again.

Could they have given you just a bit more information that would have been helpful?  Could they have answered your question themselves rather than just pointing you to a document
or FAQ?

Could they have listened to you more carefully to better understand your situation?  Could they use less jargon on their web page to make it easier to understand?

Now go back to your own business and look at every place you interact with your customers, colleagues, bosses, employees, and others.  Really pay attention to how you present
yourself, your information, and advice.  Are you really providing the best possible experience?  Are you really avoiding the mistakes and behavior that annoy you when you are the customer?

Don’t make yourself difficult to do business with.

Let’s face it.  Standards seem to be dropping everywhere you go.  The real key to creating a successful business is paying close attention to what your customer’s experience is with your business…  This is a real opportunity for you to shine and create an amazing experience for your customers.  That is the best way to stand out from your competition and create a much more successful business.

Are you giving your clients/customers an Oprah Experience?

I’ve always wanted to be in the audience for the Oprah show, but it just was never the right time.  In fact, I’ve been in the audience for a lot of shows since I live so close to New York City. I saw Phil Donahue way back in the day, and he even posed for a photo with me and my mom who of course asked a question and was on camera!  I’ve seen David Letterman (when he was at NBC), Rosie O’Donnell Show, Saturday Night Live (when Ellen Degeneres was the host), Ellen Degeneres Show (when I was out in LA celebrating my 40th birthday), Tyra Banks, Jane Pauley (I was in her audience a lot; that was the firs time I was laid off. She had a lot of cool guests on like Richard Branson, who I met; he signed my book and kissed my cheek. He’s so charming.) and now recently Nate Berkus, and just last week The Oprah Winfrey Show.  (Plus, since I started writing this, I attended a taping of Inside the Actors Studio with James Lipton and the cast of Modern Family.)

The Oprah opportunity came up very quickly.  We only had a week to get our flights, make our plans and figure out who would watch my 13-year-old son and the rescue dog, Lily. It’s amazing how everything ALWAYS works out how it’s supposed to.  The airfare was reasonable, and we have an amazing friend, Melissa McClain (an incredibly talented photographer), who was available to take care of the family, and we were set.

The show we were scheduled to be on was taped on a Friday, so I insisted to my partner of 10 years that we leave the night before because you just never know what will happen. So of course we had almost a 2-hour delay, and she was delayed at work, so it was a little stressful, to say the least, when we were leaving. We got into Chicago late, almost 11 p.m. We carried our bags on the plane, thank goodness, so we were off to get some sleep before the big day. I’m not at liberty to say where we stayed. I’ll just say an amazing guy loaned us his amazing Chicago apartment that’s on the market now for $2.3 million. It did not disappoint. The best thing about his apartment was the amazing views of Lake Michigan. His apartment is on the Gold Coast in Chicago.

Being in a strange place, I woke up more than a few times, so sleep did not come easily and with all my travel lately I had that feeling when I woke up—“Oh my gosh, where am I? Oh yeah, now I remember.”  So after a shower, a cup of coffee, and getting dressed to the nines, my partner and I were off in a taxi that the amazing doorman flagged down for us. We were off to Oprah’s studios.

If you’ve never been in the audience for a televised show, it’s totally something you ought to do once in your life. I have done it enough to be a little tired of the waiting-to–tape-the show part.  Every show is different, and Oprah was no exception.  They had us come early to check in because this was a huge makeover show for them, Oprah’s last.  So while my partner waited in line, I ran a very important errand to Starbucks for us to get coffee and breakfast!  When I got back she was next in line to check in so my timing was perfect!

They check you in and basically take anything that’s too big to go under your seat. Plus they take ALL of your electronics. We both felt a bit naked without a phone, iPad, or anything. Then we sat and waited our turn to be made over.

Yes, this was a makeover show and they had created a whole salon backstage so we got our hair done and got our make-up done, it was really fun, having a professional fuss all over how you look. Wow, I could really get used to that; now I know what these celebrities must feel like when they get hair and make-up!  And Old Navy even gave us some new clothes to wear.

The most fun part of this experience was seeing all of Oprah’s producers that are on her OWN show, 25 years behind the scenes show. I even stopped a few to chat with them!  Then they fed us a box lunch and we hung out until they loaded us into the studio, and then they taped the show.

Oprah was her usual wonderful, perky, funny and giving self.  It was fun watching her between the segments, interacting with the audience and the guests. It was a makeover show, so there were a lot of guests—who knew there were so many specialists in hair, makeup and wardrobe?! Then of course they had some giveaways which were totally awesome– we left with a Michael Kors bag, Tory Burch sunglasses, a scarf from Diane Von Furestenburg, and hair products from Oprah’s hair dresser, Andre Walker.

As you leave the studio, you line up and then they give each guest nefore they leave a bag filled with the gifts from the show. (I think they’ve done this a few times before!). The only challenge we faced came as we were leaving: We had our ticket to get our bags/phones back, but not our clothes.  I have to say the security staff and guest staff were on top of it and found our clothes. When you left the building, you were basically right by the Oprah Winfrey Store, which of course is closing and has some big sales, so we had to go there!  What’s cool is you don’t have to be in Chicago to get some things from her store– http://oprahstore.oprah.com/

After the show, my partner Meredith, knew several people who worked on the show, so we went and paid them a visit and hung out the rest of the afternoon there.  Then when we were just too exhausted, we got a cab, went back to our place, changed for dinner, and the weather was so beautiful we were able to walk to the restaurant. How lucky I made a reservation at Hugo’s, only 5 blocks from where we were staying. It was the end to a perfect day, a perfect quick trip to Chicago.

There are several things in my story that you can actually take and use in your own business so you, too, can give your clients an “Oprah” experience.

1) Create a business brand  that leads your clients and customers to look up to you as the expert and encourages them to want to experience what you have to offer. (of course, having a survey system is a fantastic way to achieve this).

2) Hire amazing people who will take care of your clients and customers. Pay them and train them well. Don’t leave anything to chance; having the right attitude and being professional is key.

3)Have systems and processes in place to be ready to handle anything.

4)Practice these systems and ensure they work properly.

5)Figure out how you can enhance your clients’ and customers’ experience. (Ask them.  Get feedback always).

6)Work on how you can upsell them. Or in Oprah’s case, get them all to go to her store to purchase things to take home to family and friends

There are a number of things you can do to ensure your clients and customers are well taken care of, just how Oprah takes care of all of her guests who fly and drive from home, make plans, get babysitters, etc., all to be there in her audience. It takes a village. Oprah knows that, and recognizes that.

She even takes the time at the end of the show to answer questions AND tell you how much she appreciates you being there. She knows how much you had to do to show up in her audience and totally makes it worth your while to be
there and a part of television history.

Picking, Choosing & Investing In the Best Resources For Your Business

So the groundhog didn’tTaking Stock Of Resources see his shadow and they’re claiming we’re in for an early spring.  I’m all for that after we in the northeast have been slammed since December with lots of snow.  Thank goodness this week the temperatures are getting warmer and all that snow is finally starting to melt.  So I thought this was the perfect time to get an early start on some spring cleaning of sorts.

The word for this week is “Resources.”  I speak to a lot of my clients about how to pick, choose and invest in the best resources that fit their business.  The one thing that I have a lot of and one thing everyone should have many of— are resources.  First, what do I mean by resources?  I put resources in two categories:

1 – Information I Pay for to learn and grow each month, or one time purchases like: Books, products, tapes, CD’s, memberships, newsletters, teleseminars, webinars – anything that I belong to or that I have bought, either a one time information purchase, or a monthly membership.

2 – People/Vendors/Software/Programs  who help me run my business: People I outsource to for services like posting my blogs, loading and sending my email auto responder emails, printing and mailing my newsletter, writing copy, managing my projects, sites like basecamp, dropbox, 1 shopping cart, Godaddy, Hostgator, survey monkey, Camtasia, Snagit, Norton Anti-virus, etc.

So this month for me, it’s important to evaluate all my resources that are currently at my fingertips. I would encourage you to take some time out to evaluate where your time and money are going each month.  What’s bringing you the most value? The least value?

A big thing to do is to know and have your plan for the year.  Let’s say one of your goals is improving your skills on copywriting.  When evaluating your resources, see how much money you have going towards increasing your copywriting skills this year. This is a terrific way to re-evaluate your spending this year and help you make your money work harder for you so you don’t have to.

Some other examples: What membership sites do you currently belong to? Are you an active member or are you wasting your monthly membership fees? Are you using Facebook and Twitter to promote your business? What list building system do you use to collect information from your clients and prospects? Is it still effective? Do you regularly connect with your list? How? Email, newsletter, blog?

Here are some of the best basic resources entrepreneurs ought to have:

1. Email Auto Responder & Shopping Cart – I personally use 1shoppingcart, but this is essential. You really need a versatile system that will not only capture your clients and prospects emails but offer you various ways to organize your list and send broadcast emails. I also love iContact as an email autoresponder.

2. Virtual Assistant – Let’s face it we can’t do everything by ourselves if we want to have a life. So delegate already—know when to have someone else do things for you so your time can be spent more effectively.  Check out my favorite people www.YourNewRockstar.com I love them because they know information and Internet marketing, NO learning curve, they get it!

3. Hosting Company – This is where your website is hosted, whether you have html pages, or use WordPress, or outsource like I do to a web master expert… I personally use both Bluehost and Hostgator and both are terrific for my needs.

4. Webmaster – I have several people I’ve used over the years and all are terrific.  My favorite person is Lisa and you can find her here – http://helpmelisa.com/.

5. Merchant Account – This is so you can collect money online and hook this into your shopping cart. Here’s my favorite Practicepaymentsolutions.com, and this one Powerpay.com .

6. Online Survey System –  My favorites are www.SurveyMonkey.com , www.SurveyGizmo.com , and www.Zoomerang.com. Every entrepreneur ought to be sending out surveys to their list at least quarterly. You need to know the pulse of what’s happening in your market place.  For more information on how you can capitalize and increase your profits in your business, check out this site— www.CreateAmazingSurveys.com/Replay.html.com.

It’s totally important to evaluate all of your resources in order to make plans and move forward. This is a great way to organize yourself and help your business run more efficiently and in turn more productively!

How to break through all the “noise” and SELL something!

This time of the year is particularly difficult to get your message across because we’re bombarded by a larger volume of messages than probably any other time of the year. Everyone, it seems, is trying to “cash” in on Christmas and the holidays. I mean you can’t blame them, it is the most profitable time of the year. I’ve spoken to some business owners who tell me they make 50% or more of their income from the year at Christmas time. Yikes, that could make or break your company.

Well, that’s why I decided to write this article because I’d love to help you “break-through” the “noise” and the clutter to make some sales.  And I’d love to see you making money throughout the year, not just during the holidays…

Here are some tips on how to get “heard.”

  1. Multiple messages works best! No matter if you’re using email or snail mail or a combination of media.  Your best bet is more messages work. I know, I know, you think people will opt out of your list if you keep emailing them.  Well the real truth is, if you communicate with them on a  more regular basis, not just when you want to sell them something, they’re  more likely to respond.
  2. Give them a reason or incentive to respond. I know for a fact this one works because I’ve used it and helped other use it too.  And I’ve actually done my holiday shopping from merchants who are sending me incentives to buy their products.  For example, I just ordered a bunch of gifts from Cherlyandco.com, my favorite cookie company. And they emailed me a discount code. If I ordered more than $250, I’d get $75 off.  Now how could I pass that up? And they also sent me a code for free shipping if I ordered by a specific date.  This stuff works!  Plus I actually got more presents this year from LandsEnd.com because they kept giving me discounts and free shipping.  Giving away incentives and rewards to shop is huge and it REALLY Works.  I actually sifted and sorted through my email to find these.  So big note – incentives work, so use them!
  3. Timing is everything. So if you combine multiple messages with an incentive, and get it to your prospects at the right time, you can make money.  So ensure your timing is good for your offer and that your prospects get it. Which leads me to number 4 —
  4. Subject headers are huge.  If you’re getting your message out through email, you better have a subject header that catches my attention.  The one subject header that annoys the heck out of me is the weekly email newsletter where the subject header is basically the same every week. Well how am I going to know the difference in all of these?  So I unfortunately hit “delete.”  So don’t be in this segment of emails. Always write an interesting, curious and provoking subject header. Or at the very least – put the incentive in the subject header like Lands End and Cheryl’s Cookies – “40% off one day only- open up”. Don’t you think a subject like this would get a better open rate?  Yes, it does… AND, negative subject headers get opened 10 times more than positive ones.  So if your subject header says “bad news,” I’ll guarantee a terrific open rate.

So to recap, you have to make your offer – and what you’re selling – stand out from the crowd.  One last idea I’d recommend is communicating with your prospects more regularly, create a relationship with them. Email them weekly and give them things of real value, don’t just “sell” them something in every communication. Make your communication interesting, informative, entertaining and valuable.

And if you want to real hints on how to do that, I’d totally recommend creating a survey and sending it out to your list. Why not ask them what they want to learn about and what’s bothering them and what interests them. For more, check out my free webinar I did last week.  Here’s the link:  www.CreateAmazingSurveys.com/Replay.html I give you a ton of great information and a PDF Create Amazing Surveys Flow Chart too. I walk you through step by step on how you can create and use a survey in your business right now that will help you create better selling product, will help you communicate with your list AND will help you get on target with creating and offering things that they want and need! www.CreateAmazingSurveys.com/Replay.html

Hope you and your loved ones have an amazing holiday!