January 29, 2014
I was for the first couple of years. In fact, that’s what appealed to me about being on the Internet – I could be anonymous and do my own thing while making my millions.
So how’d that work out for me?
Honestly, not well. Oh sure, I was a good writer, I could put out amazing PLR articles and ebooks and reports, but I wasn’t being seen. I didn’t have the traffic.
I finally figured it out – I needed to build relationships in order to grow. And in order to build relationships I had to stop looking at others in my field as competitors.
My first big break came from the relationship I built with Nicole Dean. Even though we were in the same field – PLR – she promoted me to her list. I could hardly believe it! This was honestly the turning point in my business. Thank you, Nicole.
Another example of what came from building a relationship with another internet marketer was when Alan Petersen and I got to know each other and realized we had different strengths that could come together. We created a couple successful products including a big membership program.
I also found that competitors who became friends were willing to help give me material for a subscription newsletter I was putting out every month. I mean, they were supplying me with content. How cool is that?
Of course it works both ways. I’ve helped or collaborated with others and it’s always a win-win. I happily give them a coupon, guest post, interview, etc. and I gain more exposure, people on my list, and sales.
Working with others has helped me learn and grow. And the little cherry on top of the Extreme Moose Tracks ice cream with chocolate syrup and whipped cream is that it’s FUN.
I had to learn how to get past the competitor thing to gain beneficial friends the hard way – lots of trial and error. I wonder how many dollars I’ve lost by doing it my slow, trial and error way? I wonder how much sooner I could have made some lucrative pairings while learning all the new stuff I’ve learned from them?
That’s my story.
What about you?
If you’ve had some real success working with your competitors, please tell me about it in the comments below.
If not, please check out Alice Seba’s new program – Competitors Into Profits. There are 8 modules that go into depth helping you to create those beneficial relationships. There’s a private FB group and hot seats. Plus templates, checklists, and worksheets. You can ask questions, get answers and get a butt kicking if you need it.
It will be interactive, which is not only the best way to learn but I’m thinking you might find some competitors to partner with!
Here’s the link (affiliate link) if you’re struggling with getting things to happen online: Competitors Into Profits. It starts soon so jump in now to get the most benefit.
And let me know how it goes!
November 1, 2013
I wasn’t sure how I would do it until I dug in. Sometimes I’ll totally rewrite it, sometimes I will change maybe half of it and keep half, and other times I’ll go off in a different direction.
If you compare the following with the original PLR article you’ll see I came at it from a bit of a different angle. It’s now more of why me, myself, and I like case studies. I divided some of the original bullet points into why I like to read case studies and then why I like to do them. So you’ll recognize the bullet points, although I didn’t use all of them. You’ll also notice the last paragraphs here are more of the original wording.
Business Case Studies – Are They Worth It?
Why? I’ll explain my whys in a minute.
Before I go any further I thought we should go over just what a case study is. My own definition seems kind of fuzzy. According to Wikipedia:
“Case studies are analyses of persons, events, decisions, periods, projects, policies, institutions, or other systems that are studied holistically by one or more methods.”
“A case study should be defined as a research strategy, an empirical inquiry that investigates a phenomenon within its real-life context.”
Me, I believe anything can be called a case study if it’s a detailed study of something, and by studying it you can use the knowledge to your own benefit. It might start off as an experiment but the analyzing of the results of the experiment makes it a case study. The same with challenges – a detailed look at the results makes it a case study in my book.
Why I like to read and follow case studies:
- They allow me to get to know the person presenting it better, on a different level.
- They teach me about products, tools, software, and/or methods so I can decide if I want to purchase or try them.
- They’re interesting! Does the person succeed? It’s almost like a short reality TV show.
Why I like to do them myself:
- They hold me accountable. I’ll follow through so I don’t look stupid.
- I can promote products I use in the experiment without having to hard sell. It’s a natural way to promote and I like it much better.
- I can be transparent and hopefully gain my readers’ trust.
- They challenge me to try a tool more deeply than I might otherwise have.
- They challenge me to do something completely so I can analyze the results, learn from them and improve.
- They give me something to blog about that others will find interesting.
- I can educate my readers right alongside educating myself.
So what makes a good case study for your online business?
Just about anything as long as it’s not too personal or too off-topic for the readers of your niche. It needs to be something interesting, preferably with some sort of wow factor. It should be in your niche, the niche your readers are following you in. It should not be about your new workout and how much muscle you’ve built unless that is your niche.
A good case study should point out measurable results. You can’t just tell someone how much better you feel after taking xyz supplement. Tell them exactly how much you were able to cut back on your sleep and exactly how much more productive you were at work.
Examples of measurable results:
* I increased Facebook Likes and comments by 15%, and sales by 24% after implementing the first five tips from this Social Marketing Results course.
* This squeeze page creation tool enabled me to create a squeeze page in 4 minutes and converted 27% better than my old squeeze page layout.
* I earned $$$ more this quarter than the previous quarter because of this course on attracting super affiliates.
One idea with case studies that start as challenges is to invite your readers to join in too. Tell them about it in advance and ask them to commit. Their results will be just as enlightening as yours, plus you’re building your tribe.
Case studies are educational and informative for you and your readers and they can also be lucrative because of the honest, soft way you’re promoting products you’re using in the study. I’ve got to tell you, case studies are a big win-win.
Have you done case studies yourself?
What would you like to do a case study on next?
August 29, 2013
The following is pure PLR, unchanged. I wrote it and included it in a free PLR bundle here. I’d like you to see this PLR in it’s original form because my next post will show you exactly how I’ve changed it and made it even more awesome than it already is. Stay tuned!
Making Case Studies Part Of Your Online Business
Okay, so you’re an internet marketer and you have a blog, a Facebook page, a Twitter account, and maybe some products you’ve created. You also make some money as an affiliate for various products.
How can you get more readers to your blog and Facebook posts, become a trusted expert, make more affiliate sales, and perhaps also sell more of your own products?
Do case studies.
There are several good reasons why case studies should be part of the way you do business. They:
* allow you to show transparency, which means you can build trust.
* force you to put your ALL into it, from start to finish so you can report the amazing, successful, or unexpected results.
* hold you accountable – you will do what you say you’ll do.
* are a vehicle in which you can soft sell any tools or products involved, as an affiliate.
* are fun for you to do.
* give people the chance to live vicariously and also to see the results of a tool or software before purchasing. People love to read case studies.
* give you something to blog, tweet, and FB post about. Keeps you in people’s minds.
* allow you to try tools in a deeper way than you might have otherwise.
* help educate you – you might learn a better way to do things.
* help educate your readers.
* give your blog stickiness.
There are elements of a good case study you should be aware of. First of all, it has to be something that will be of interest to your readers, preferably with some sort of wow factor. It should be in your niche, the niche your readers are following you in. It should not be about your new workout and how much muscle you’ve built unless that is your niche.
A good case study should also have measurable results. You can’t just tell someone how much better you feel, that’s not a real quantifiable result. I earned $$$ more in the last quarter than the 2nd quarter, I lost 15 pounds and 6 inches in my waist, I increased my optin list by 40%, this squeeze page converted 27% better than the that old squeeze page, it took me 1 hr. less time to do xx with this tool. See? Measurable.
One idea with case studies is to invite your readers to join in too. They can be on the same path or doing something parallel. Or it might be a good idea to tell them about the study in advance to get them interested and coming back to your blog. You want them to visit and read your blog again and again to build up the trust, transparency and stickiness.
You might be wondering what to do case studies on. Keep the above factors in mind, then look at tools you already own and use (or have been saving for someday) or look at something you’ve been thinking about purchasing. It could also be a service, a training program, different types of advertising, or more.
Case studies are educational and informative for you and your readers and they can also be lucrative. All things considered, case studies are a win-win.
So be on the look out for my next blog post. I don’t know exactly how I want to change this PLR yet, but I will change it.
If you have ideas on how YOU’D change it, let me know! There are different directions to go.
July 19, 2013
My summer is 2/3 over because it started when my kids finished their finals, which was May 17th. So what do I have to show for it so far?
Summer is never business as usual. I would like to say I had my laptop out by the pool but I don’t have a pool and I can’t see my laptop screen outside. So it seems I get to split my time in more directions – get some work done, go for a run or bike ride, back inside to hide from the heat and get more work done, build a bookshelf, go to the movies with my son, and so on.
Here are some of the highlights, and then it’s your turn to tell me yours.
While I’ve certainly not been writing blog posts, I have written several new PLR packs and listed them at a discount.
I’ve also been working hard at the business I co-own with a partner. We’re doing great with it although I’m having to adjust my marketing a bit because we create and sell a physical product. Some things are so different and I’m loving the challenge. This is where I’ve been spending a lot of my time.
And next weekend I’m going to Ken McArthur’s JVAlertLive. It’s right here in Denver so how can I not go? The list of speakers is pretty amazing. Must resist being star-struck by Joel Comm. Do NOT ask for his autograph, Peggy.
I ran a 10K (6.2 miles) with my daughter, friend, and her daughter at the beginning of summer. That was a challenge, and so much fun when the actually running part was done! Now I’m concentrating on improving my 5K times so I can come in 1st place instead of 3rd at the Turkey Day 5K (transparency note – very very small race and I’m in the old lady division).
Hubs and I ride bikes when we can. Recently we rode up Vail Pass which is something I’ve always wanted to do. We’ve come down it several times (you can be shuttled to the top for a nice 18 mile glide down) but we’ve never gone up it. Our up was only about 7 or 8 miles, but did I mention it was UP?Hubby riding back down Vail Pass.
Camping in the mountains next to an alpine lake for a weekend and one more trip planned in August. We have a popup tent trailer thingie that doesn’t get near enough use in my opinion.
We just got back from a week-long family reunion at a house on the water on Whidbey Island. The weather was perfect, the crabs were fresh and tasty, the hiking was amazing, the food and beer good, and there was water everywhere! Oh, and I even still like my relatives. They got a kick out of hearing my phone cha-ching every time my shop got a sale.
Waiting for the ferry to Whidbey Island.
The view from the deck of the house – Mt Baker.
Me and the kids after a hike.
As mentioned, I built a small bookcase and now I’m turning my daughter’s room into a guest room. We’re also getting granite countertops in the kitchen. The slabs are picked out and paid for, just waiting for the installation. Yay!
The veggie garden looks amazingly lush and we’ve been eating the broccoli, green beans and yellow squash. Lettuce is done and tomatoes and peppers aren’t even near ready. The grape vines are starting to cover the arbor over our patio and judging by the number of grapes, I’m going to have to learn how to make wine just to use them all.
Oh man, this sounds like a Christmas letter. At least I didn’t brag about my children.
Ok, your turn! I’d like to hear what you’ve been up to.
May 28, 2013
I had an email a few weeks ago from a student who mentioned that she had a project in the works but she was stuck in that “ready aim, ready aim” place. I’ve really been thinking about her comment. I think we can all relate to it in some aspect of our lives at some point in time. It really holds us back! We don’t grow, learn, become profitable, find our right livelihood, or we miss out in relationships, etc.
In regards to Internet marketing and getting your product to market or your online services up and running, I want to address some possible ways to break through the barriers. We put up our own barriers of self-doubt and we can take them down.
Follow a blueprint.
If you have a step-by-step guide for doing what you want to do, then do the steps one at a time. Don’t hesitate, don’t overthink it, just put your head down and watch your feet as they go forward – first the right, then the left. Pushing the button to make it “live” is just another step that you hit on the way to the next.
Do it in smaller increments.
If you’re really out of your element, feel you’ve still got so much to learn and the thought of making a big huge splash scares the dickens out of you, you can always do a series of smaller splashes. Think of it like jumping feet first into the shallow end of the pool – your splash is not as great as if you did a double triple off the high dive, but it’s not as scary and you can get out faster and do lots more jumps. Keep moving progressively towards the deep end.
Put a gun to your head.
It might be that you’re fortunate enough to be in a comfortable economic place. You have a day job or your partner makes good money or you live at home. Whatever. You need more incentive to jump the self-confidence barrier. So pretend you just lost your job and you are going to have to support yourself with your online business. Or imagine that you’re getting a divorce and your partner’s income will be gone. Imagine something that scares the crap out of you and makes you take action.
Give it away for free.
My very first project online was an ebook. Giving it away for free to build my list REALLY took the pressure off! How can anyone complain about the ebook when they were getting it for free, right? People appreciated the info and this helped build my confidence. It didn’t hurt that everything in my ebook was helpful info from leading experts in the field.
Accountability, private and public.
If you have trouble holding yourself accountable, get an accountability partner. You check in with them every week and if they’re doing their job right, they will push you to get done what you said you’d get done. Good accountability partners have a way of making you want to please them and show off what you’ve accomplished. Public accountability works wonders if you’re close to completing a project. Pick a date you’re going to go live, then announce it to your list or Facebook or Twitter or wherever your tribe is. Now you’re really committed to seeing it through.
I’m not talking about asking your mom what she thinks of your product, but ask people who will give you honest feedback. If they think it’s amazing, then ride on that boost to your confidence and hit the “go live” button. If they think you should improve it in the areas of x and z, then do that and feel the good feeling that you’ve made your product even better.
I’m not ashamed to admit that sometimes I can effectively bribe myself into reaching my goal. If I get this finished and launched, I can take a weekend trip to _____. Experiment with your bribes until you hit on one that is effective and doable. It has to give you a big enough thrill to get you over your hill of resistance.
Partner with someone.
Partnering is an excellent way to allow you to use your expertise and another person’s expertise. It seems the outcome is always bigger than the sum of the parts and this is a confidence booster for sure. You’re confident in your part and you’re confident in their part. Partner with someone who has launched products or services before and has no problem getting them to market.
You have to get past the “what if people hate it? what if it sucks?”. If you don’t, think about what happens to you. You don’t get your product out there (the one that could really help people), and your dreams die. Doesn’t having your dreams die suck worse?
I hope these help. To paraphrase Nelson Mandela, you’re not doing the world any favors by acting small.
Questions: What do you have to add? What works for you? Please share.