A Quick Tip

While checking my email this afternoon (I now do it once a day, very liberating to close the email program.) I came across several confirmation emails. Now, I’ve tested and tracked a lot of things when it comes to confirmation emails, and I know what works. But apparently, nobody else gives much thought to them.

Heres a simple tip that will increase the number of people who confirm & complete the optin process…

Make sure the confirmation link is “above the fold”.

By above the fold, I mean that if you view it in your email program, the link shows up without you having to scroll down.

Why? Possibly because when people see that link, they know what it is, and just click it by default. I actually did a test, and wrote “purple monkey dishwasher” above my confirmation link, and had the link above the fold. The result? 85% confirmed their optin, the other 15% asked me what the heck I was talking about.

So from now on, instead of using that space to explain why you’re emailing people, just do a quick 2-3 sentence blurb, and let it go. And yes, this works in other niches as well.

Try it – you’ll enjoy the results!

– Cherilyn

How much content is enough?

I was having a conversation with one of my proteges awhile back during the Q & A session I hosted, and an interesting point came up. When it comes to mini-courses, how much content is enough?

Though my immediate answer is “there is no such thing as too much, just be sure to make your point (get the click) every time”, I’ve been thinking about this, and I want to share something with all of you – my loyal readers.

In email copywriting, believe it or not there are four distinct styles – and only 4. I’ll use some popular gurus to illustrate the styles…

Mike Filsaime & Gary Ambrose prefer the personal touch, telling you how they think and feel about products & giving good nuggets of info. Their emails are always engaging – like a sales letter in email format.

Clayton Makepeace is the hard-sell, personal approach. He doesn’t tell you how he thinks or feels about a product, because the only ones he promotes are his own. Instead, he sells you on the product using hard-sell tactics injected with his personality (which, if you’ve ever read his emails or heard him speak, is hard to resist!)

Myself and some other marketers like Rick Butts use the “hey, its just me” approach – we talk like its just a couple of friends over a casual dinner. We expose our personalities, and make you feel at ease. For example, the subject line of an email I sent out yesterday was “Pobody’s Nerfect!” – because the teleseminar I had scheduled for yesterday evening had to be canceled (John Taylor, the guest speaker, was stuck out of town).

And finally, there are those like Tellman Knudson (now), Bill Thorn, Cody Moya, etc who essentially copy & paste their promo emails from the affiliate area of the product they are promoting. I imagine with an hour or so of extra effort, they could double the pulling power of those promotions – but thats just my opinion :wink:

The bottom line is, there are really only a few ways to go – but all of the high-performing styles use personality. Don’t hide behind your email. In today’s high-tech low touch world, being yourself is to your advantage. Just ask Mike Filsaime!

– Cherilyn Woodhouse

A little note from me…

Dearest readers, this post is a bit different… I wanted to speak to you all on a slightly personal note about some new products that are coming out.

Around the beginning of the year, there was a rash of “Copywriting Secrets” type products being launched. And everyone bought them – and most people were disappointed (not all, but most). Don’t worry, this isn’t a pitch – I want to tell you something.

You see, right now we’re about to see a rebound of the copywriting info niche. Many people have gotten past the “if I see one more ebook on copywriting I’m going to puke” phase, and marketers are waiting in the wings to make sure you get your fill of new copywriting secrets.

I know this, because in the last month, I’ve personally been asked to review dozens of new copywriting products – and a few of them do make the grade, but that isn’t why I’m writing you.

I’m writing you to let you know that when it comes to copywriting, while you must ALWAYS be willing to learn, buying dozens of ebooks is not your answer.

Now, you may see me promote one or two things that I believe in over the next little while – and I hope you’ll listen, because I never EVER promote anything on this blog that I wouldn’t recommend to my own family and friends. But, at the same time, if you are looking for a quick fix to your copywriting woes, please – don’t buy them.

Copywriting is a mixture of art and science. Its about using time-tested data and strategies in new and unique ways. Think of a professional copywriter as Bill Nye the Science Guy. Taking something we all “know”, we’ve all seen before, and putting a new twist on it to deliver the message more effectively. No book in the world can effectively teach you that – a major part of copywriting is DOING.

Some of the upcoming launches will be good – some of them won’t. I won’t name the names of either, because I don’t feel that I’m in a position to do so right now. But if you take one thing from this post, let this be it…

Experience is more valuable than knowledge, and action is more valuable than words.

You can’t replace a retail & direct sales career with books, and you can’t replace writing copy with talking about it. My advice to you, is to use the same formula to judge the upcoming launches as I use for every purchase in my business…

If I buy this, how quickly will the knowledge in THIS BOOK return my money? Am I going to read this right away, or put it off to a later date?

If a 100% ROI takes more than 6 months to a year, I don’t buy it. Because if the knowledge contained in that purchase can’t return my $27, $47, or $97 in six months – it likely never will. And if I’m not excited enough to read it right away, once again, I probably never will.

I know you’re all intelligent people. After all, you’re reading my blog! Use that to your advantage, and only invest your hard earned dollars in something that will bring you a reasonable return.

Thats my 2cents on the matter.

– Cherilyn

Marketing Offline?

Something I’ve come across a lot lately when giving out advice is this – online people are SCARED of offline marketing.

Not all of them, mind you, but many. Their logic is that offline advertising costs money, without a guaranteed return. Online advertising is free, and a return is easy.

This couldn’t be further from the truth!

I see many of these same people using PPC, buying ezine solo ads, buying leads, etc – spending money on traffic, without a guaranteed return.

I want to propose a scenario to you, my readers. Humour me in this for a moment, and imagine you were Joe Shmoe.

Joe has a product in the pets niche. Its like a new dog starter kit. He markets it online with some success. Here are some of his stats from PPC…

CPC – $0.47
Average monthly visitors – 860
Squeeze page conversion – 30%
OTO conversion – 8%
Overall conversion – 2.4%
Lifetime value of each customer – $80

Joe has to spend an average of around $20 to gain each customer, leaving him with an average profit of $60. Total profit for the month – around $1200. Not bad, right?

Well imagine Joe used a newspaper ad in the pets section of his local paper…

Cost of ad – $80 for one week
Total traffic – 1230 visitors
Squeeze page conversion – 45% (warmer leads)
OTO conversion – 8%
Overall conversion – 3.6%
Lifetime value – $80

Joe is now paying about $2 per customer, leaving him with a profit of $78 each. Not a big difference you say? Well, with the increased traffic & warmer leads, Joe makes a whopping $3453.84 in profit from this ONE WEEK campaign.

Just by changing his advertising method, Joe would have multiplied his monthly profits by 10 TIMES!

Now, obviously this isn’t an exact scenario – but results like this happen every single day! Dollar for dollar, offline paid ads outpull online paid ads – every single time. The difference?

Targeted, warm leads.

Now, if Joe had advertised his dog starter kit in the business section, or anywhere else in the paper for that matter, or sent out a direct mail letter, he probably wouldn’t have seen the same results. But where he placed the ad is EXACTLY where his prospects were looking – they were looking for a new dog, and found his dog starter kit at the same time.

And because they were already interested in the free report he offered in his ad, prospects were warmer – and more receptive to his squeeze page offer.

I ask you this – what is under $100 to test a concept? Many newbies blow more than that on AdWords in a single DAY, without any return at all. And campaigns like this are expandable. Once you have a proven concept, take your ads nationwide! 1000x the traffic, 1000x times the sales, and 1000x the profits.

Tell me, reader – for less than $100, will YOU give this a try?

– Cherilyn