Ok, that subject line is very heavy on the clickbait, but stay with me. Many of the emails I write are a bit more… Cerebral. I like to make you think and I try to write from a perspective that forces you to stretch your brain a bit.
Sometimes though, it’s important just to break things down into simple, easy to consumer bite-sized chunks. I like things in groups of three, it makes it easier for people to remember.
That’s the plan for this email.
The first thing you need is an audience. Some people will say you need a market or a niche, but that’s internet marketing jargon from five years ago that people are just regurgitating now because some guru said it in a frauduct that they bought from them.
A market or a niche is a segment or product space and it really looks at things the wrong way around. You see people all the time say that they’re going to get into some market or another, “I’m going to get into the health market and sell supplements.”
You need to start attracting people to you before you do anything. You want to build a relationship with a following that’s loosely coalesced around a topic where you can establish your credibility and draw people into your circle of influence. The people are far more likely to trust you, buy from you, recommend you to their friends and in a manner of speaking, become “fans”.
The second thing you need to do is serve a purpose. I’m not talking about some metaphysical, higher philosophical plane kind of purpose. When I say “serve a purpose” it means that you have to actually deliver something of value.
Before you run off on a secret squirrel mission to find the purpose you serve, slow down and take a deep breath. The reason an audience is the first thing you should be building is that when you do that, you’ll quickly discover what they need, their desires and their greatest source of fear and doubt.
That last one is pretty important – fear and doubt. These are great motivators and if you can find within your assembled audience what eats away at them and causes them to question themselves then you’re in a strong place to find a purpose that helps alleviate that fear and doubt. Think about it, they know you, they trust you, you’ve established rapport and now you are the person whose purpose is to resolve something that disturbs them at a very deep level.
That leads to the third thing you need and that’s a strong offer. This is one of those things that gets overlooked or dumbed down to the point of being meaningless. Some people will tell you your offer is all about the sales copy or even worse, people start talking gibberish about funnels. Upsells, downsells, cross-sells, recurring… Blah blah blah. I just want to drown myself in my own spit when people start blabbering on about “your funnel”.
A strong offer is more than that, but it’s also quite simple. You need to present to your audience a chance to alleviate their fears and doubts in such a way that they value the solution you’re offering far more than the money that you’re asking them to give you.
I know, I know… That sounds too easy, but seriously, that’s the heart of commerce as a function. Money is a tangible asset. You’re offering them something in a trade, a solution to something that they find painful. You need them to see that exchange of money for the solution as being a fair and equitable trade.
There’s a subtlety in that last sentence that I want to share with you. What many of the online marketing experts will tell you is that you want to make an offer that’s so compelling that it becomes a “no-brainer” decision for people to buy.
That’s dumb. The implication is that you want people to believe that you’re undervaluing what you’re offering and it plays on people’s greed – they think they are getting something worth more than what they are paying.
I don’t know about you, but that doesn’t sound like a very healthy relationship to me. I don’t want to attract people to me who are excited about the idea of taking advantage of me and not giving me a fair price for what I’m offering.
Growing up in the 70’s and 80’s, TV was littered with those guys who’d make the commercials for their stores and they’d get in front of the camera, yell at you that their prices were so low it was crazy. They were targeting price shoppers and ultimately, they damaged their own businesses because they conditioned buyers to shop almost exclusively on price for whatever they sold.
If you look at the three things I’m talking about in their entirety, you’ll see it through a different lens. You’re establishing a bond and a relationship with an audience. You’re then looking to serve a purpose for that audience that alleviates something that pains them at a deeper level. Finally, you’re making them an offer to buy that solution at a fair and equitable price. Because you’ve established a relationship with these people, it becomes easier to charge a fair price because deep down, most people aren’t looking to fleece other people, they want to be fair.
It’s a virtuous cycle as well because the people who you have the relationship with, the ones you best serve and who are willing to pay a fair price for your offering, those are the people you want to be doing business with. They are the easiest customers to deal with and the ones that will get the most value from what you do.
So remember, keep it simple:
– Build and establish a relationship with an audience
– Find a way to serve a purpose for your audience that alleviates a deep-seated fear or doubt for them
– Make them a strong offer at a fair and equitable price
If you focus your attention on just doing those three things, you’ll instinctively remove distractions and start having success more quickly.