Tuesday, 28 June 2016

Small Business Marketing Secrets

Hi Everyone,

In my last post I wrote about starting your own online business and I gave some ideas about selling products and services. That's all very well but the key to making sales of either products or services is marketing. Now marketing embraces a miriad of techniques and sub techniques, some formulas and undoubtedly a few systems too. However, the crux of the matter, when it comes down to it, is you must remember you are selling to another person.

If you always bear this in mind when you set out on planning your marketing strategy, then you will, or at least should always come out on top in terms of making profits. That's because prospects, traffic or whatever you want to call them are only people. They have feelings, wants and desires. They are emotional beings and buying anything other than essential food and perhaps some essential items of clothing will almost always be an emotional decision. So, understand your target market audience and remember they are human, just like you.

Okay, let's move on...

Let's get marketing...

Marketing is a vast subject and includes all forms of advertising from the shop window postcard to the £million TV ad. Online many people tend to think about obvious forms of marketing like Google Adwords or Facebook ads, without any consideration to their website content. Others will ensure their website content is fully optimised for the search engines, and then concentrate all energy and money into getting their website on page one of Google.

Some people prefer to rely on networking or social media or email marketing. I can't say exactly which method is going to be best for your business but I always advise my clients to try all of them and see what works. What I can say however, with some conviction, is there are some forms of marketing that are proven to be more successful than others. And by that I mean... have been responsible for making some people very rich... some of my clients amongst them. Looking at the complete picture, here are my thoughts and experiences on successful online marketing...

Start with your website...

It's no secret that people will do a Google search for whatever they are looking for, whether it's to buy something or just to find information about something so it makes a lot of sense to first start optimising your website. Always remember that Google is in business to provide searchers with the most relevant content relating to their search terms, or "keywords". The latter is so important you just cannot ignore it because keywords is what makes Google work for search traffic and for you.

To give your website a fighting chance of making any kind of impact, amongst all the competition, you'll need really good content on your website. That means it must be well written, with perfect English grammar and punctuation, and must it must be valuable to the reader. For example your content must relate to your products or services, offer some free information, be engaging or entertaining, and deliver your sales message. If you're not particularly good at copywriting then best call in a professional to deal with this very important aspect of your marketing. (Call me now on 01275 837 577)

Once your website content is right, you can then plan to send traffic to the site through free and paid services. There's absolutely no point in spending hundreds or even thousands of pounds in generating traffic and directing it to your website if the content is not up to standard. Now, I mentioned in an earlier post that the money is in the list, so build a list. Here's how...

Build a list...

When someone visits your website you should take every opportunity to engage with this prospect, and the best way to do this is to get them to opt-in to your mailing list. Subscribers can then be contacted by email over and over with offers and discounts and whatever else you want to promote. To build a list of prospects you will need to give them something of value for free. This could be a short ebook packed with information or tips and tricks. Your prospect can get a copy of this freebie by giving up their name and email in exchange. You'll need an email capture form for this and you can get one for free at: www.mailchimp.com

When people begin to subscribe to your emails you can contact them and offer some good advice or free information or just an update about your products and services. It's best to not try and sell them every time you email them because they will unsubscribe. Better to give information in one email and then offer them something to buy in the next one and so on etc. I've known people who have made an absolute killing from email marketing to their own list and they only had around 5-10K subscribers. A large list of subscribers is your ticket to financial success... guaranteed!

Generating traffic... Google Adwords

Okay, so you have the website, you have email capture installed... what next? Get traffic that's what! Many people I know in this business won't bother with free traffic generation methods because it's slow and cumbersome. I'm talking about article marketing, forum marketing and similar slow methods. These will of course work in time but to get instant traffic, and lots of it, you will have to pay for it. Let's look at Google Adwords first because this is still one of the most popular methods. It may seen simple... open a free Google Adwords account, load it with cash and then write a short ad. To be really successful at this you must understand the value of keywords and keyword phrases.

A keyword or keyword phrase is simply a word or series of words that people are likely to use when searching for what you are offering. However, you'll find that there is a lot of competing and you will have to bid on those keywords. In essence, the more you are prepared to pay, the more traffic is sent to your site. Now, Google has a thing about quality of website content and this is taken into consideration when you bid on keywords. They call it "Quality Score", which means your website is ranked according to the quality of your content and its value to to the searcher. Another reason why you must get your website right.

Generating traffic... Facebook

Facebook offer advertising in a similar form to Google but in my opinion has the edge when it comes to demographics. Being able to target people in a particular age group, male or female, within a specific location and pay less than Adwords is well worth considering. They do have a few silly rules you will have to follow but if you want traffic, try advertising here. I should also mention that it's a good idea to get a Facebook account, if you don't already have one, and create a page for your products and services. Them put a Facebook link on your website and ask visitors to follow you so that they can be kept up to date with all the latest blah blah blah. It's another way to create that all-important list.

Get creative with Facebook. People like funny stories, fluffy animals, babies and small children, and good luck / bad luck stories. Factor some of this in with your Facebook marketing alongside some nice friendly images and you're on your way. The key to getting lots of followers on Facebook, and Twitter for that matter, is to put something "out there" that will go viral. If you can come up with a story or a photo that has mass appeal then your marketing will take off like a rocket because there is a strong possibility it will be shared amongst other Facebook users, who may then pay you a visit and subscribe or even visit your website to buy something.

Generating traffic... Video

It's a fact that people who watch a video of your product or service are much more likely to buy from you. Video is huge... it's humongous and it has the potential to generate millions of views, some of which could become buyers. Google loves video content on websites and will reward the website by giving it a higher ranking in its search engine, as will Bing and Yahoo. We are accustomed to "seeing" advertising because we have all been brought up watching TV ads. So, if you want a good video, keep watching those million pound TV ads to get some ideas.

I saw the potential of video many years ago, so I set up a video production and marketing company, www.busyvids.co.uk - This was to be my way of getting a sales message across for my clients as well as writing their sales copy. Video works... it can be instant or it can be slow but it continues to work for months and years so it's a great investment in your business. The optimum length of video is around 60-90 seconds and should include lots of visuals by way of images and text. It's best if it has a professional voiceover and a soundtrack and if it's going onto Youtube it needs to be fully optimised.

Youtube is largest video platform and because Youtube is owned by Google you have the chance of getting your video into the general search pages too. There are several other video sharing platforms, some free and some paid. You'll need to try a few to gauge their effectiveness. Vimeo is probably one of the best. For more about video production and marketing contact me here: 01275 837 577


I don't pretend to have covered all the marketing methods worth looking at or even covered the above in any real detail, because marketing is a subject I could write about all day long and still not cover all the main points, advantages and disadvantages. However, I hope I have given enough to make this post worth reading. If you need any help just drop me a line. If you would like to book me for a consultation or some copywriting work then call me on 01275 837 577.

Consultations are £50 per 30 mins (Telephone and email)
Copywriting prices vary according to project - free quotation on request. 

That's all for now but look out for my next post because I'm going to be looking at trends and how to spot them. This will be very useful for anyone who wants to know what best to sell and who to  .



Tuesday, 21 June 2016

How To Start Your Own Internet Business

Hi Everyone,

As mentioned in my last blog post, I want to address the subject of making money online. Primarily I want to focus on what to sell and how to do it. However, in this post I want to run through the various ways you can make money online if you are just starting out. Some of this advice would be useful if you already run a small business and would like to supplement your income from one or several other income streams.

Products to sell...

Okay, I get asked quite often by newbies and wannabes, forgive the expressions, about what to sell on the Internet. First of all you can sell your own product, and if you don't have one you can create one. For example if you're particularly good at coding you might want to consider making an app, or a piece of software that can help others get things done faster and cheaper. Another way to create your own product is to write an ebook.

Listen up guys... anyone can write an ebook but the best subject to write about is one that you are very knowledgeable about or very experienced in. People will always be willing to pay for information that will help them in some way. Information products account for many millions of dollars in profits every year so why try to reinvent the wheel?

If you are the creative or inventive type you might have a unique product or just an idea waiting to flourish. Don't leave it... create it and sell it!

With ebooks you can sell them direct from your own website, put then on Kindle or Lulu or get others to sell them for you. I'll be covering some ways and means to sell your products and services in my next post

So, could you create a course about a subject that people will pay for? A video course is best. Having your own product can make you very rich, very quickly as long as there is a market for it. You also get to keep 100% of the profits, so there is a real incentive to work on that thought.

Now for those who don't feel very creative or hate the thought of writing or don't have the time blah... blah... blah... don't worry. There are many other options...

The main alternative option is to sell someone else's product for a commission. This is known as affiliate marketing. First port of call for this money earner is Clickbank (www.clickbank.com). Join Clickbank for free, choose products from the many categories and sell them. Some will pay you as much as 75% in commissions and believe me when I tell you that many millionaires have been created through this method.

Another commission orientated opportunity is CPA offers. CPA stands for Cost Per Action, and it simply means you will get a commission for getting people to buy or to simply put their name and emails into a form. This is lead generation, for which many big companies will pay you handsomely. Go over to www.maxbounty.com and take a look.

If selling is your thing then go the whole hog and sign up for as many affiliate programs as you can handle. Just Google "affiliate programs" to get started.

On the same them is PLR. Private Label Rights allows you to buy and sell the creator's product as if it was your own. Basically, you go to a site like www.idplr.com and buy a product with PLR. You can then customize it and make it your own, then sell and keep all the profits.

Services to sell...

If you don't want to get into selling products then you might prefer to make money selling your services... like I do.

Again, if you're the creative type you could create banners, logos or images for people to use on their websites and in their advertising campaigns. If you're good at coding or know Wordpress inside out you can offer to design and build websites, although competition is fierce in this industry.

Good at taking photos? Then get clicking and get over to the many photo selling websites like www.smugmug.com or www.depositphotos.com or any of the tens of good photo selling sites. You'll need to be taking photos every day to build up a large collection, and they need to be top quality HD images.

Are you good at writing? Are you good at drawing? Are you good at languages? Are you good at teaching? Just make a list of all the things you are good at and see if you can turn this skill into a part-time or full-time business.

Anything to sell...

For everything else there are the auction sites like ebay. I know someone who makes a full time living from ebay by simply buying and selling the same items. For example, he looks around ebay for misspelt listings, which inevitably have little or no bids. He'll then bid and buy these items, and relist them right away for a quick profit. The trick here is to make sure there is a hungry market, and the best way to find out is to find listings with lots of bids. If there's only one item and 7 bidders only one can win, leaving 6 people very disappointed. There's your market.

There are many opportunities to make money online and these are just a few. In my next post I'll be looking at ways to market your products and services all over the Internet.

Don't miss it.

All for now,


Monday, 6 June 2016

The Money Is In The List

Hi Everyone,

Now, I've heard this saying a million times and I've probably repeated it to my new clients just as many times. Here is a fact about trading online or offline: If you want to make a lot of money you need to have a large list of clients, prospects or subscribers.

The larger the list, the more you can sell and the more money you will make. It's a simple fact of successful business, and we all need customers... or clients... or subscribers... or prospects... or members... or whatever it is you need to be able to promote your products and services.

I've been telling my new clients about this for the past 15 years and I've been going into a lot of detail about this "life-changing phenomenon". However, today I'm going to give you the basics so that you can understand the concept and how best to implement your own cash generating list.

You can use this method to promote your own products and services or to promote other products or services, for which you make a commission... as outlined in my last post. Generating  your own list will lead you into very successful email marketing, as opposed to cold emailing, which can be absolutely soul destroying.

Okay let's go...

You will first need a website, and if you're able to build your own then all the better, even if it's just a free Wordpress website or one of those you get for free from you hosting company. If you're not too tech savvy then go over to Elance or PPH or Freelancer and pay someone to do it for you. I'll take you through creating your own website in another blog so stay posted. Why not subscribe to my blog now so you don't miss anything?

Once you have your website the next thing you will need is an email capture form. You will need this to gather names and email addresses of your prospects. If you're just starting out online and you're on a tight budget, I highly recommend that you pop over to Mailchimp (www.mailchimp.com). You can sign up for a free account that will allow you to manage up to 2,000 subscribers.

You can use Mailchimp to send plain text emails or html emails, whichever is best for your product or service. I always prefer to send text emails because believe it or not many old email systems don't really cater for html and besides, there is always the danger that html emails can transfer viruses and other nasty no-good things to your valuable subscribers. Play it safe!

Now, Mailchimp will allow you to not only collect names and emails from your website through the email capture form that they provide, you are also able to manage your subscribers and your emails. By that I mean you can remove or add subscribers manually, you can arrange them into groups, and you can set your emails to go out on an auto-responder. That means you can automatically send emails to your list every 2, 3 or 4 days or every week or every month etc.

Tests have proved that you sometimes have to remind your prospects up to 7 times, about your offers before they actually buy anything. If they don't buy after that they never will. So, let's say you have your website built and you intend to promote an offer on Clickbank. One offer plus one website and one domain and your good to go. Stick to that rule!

If you grow your list to just 1,000 subscribers and they like your offer you can expect to sell a single product offer to around 8% of them. Note: A "warm" list is 6 times more likely to respond than a "cold" list. Let's do the maths... If you're going to make 75% commission from each sale and the selling price is £97.00, you will make £77.60 from each sale. Multiply that by 8% of your list total and you will make £6,208.00.

Some marketers have lists totalling many hundreds of thousands, so can you see how easy it is to make serious money and become very rich? Imagine if you had a list of prospects totalling 50,000. Multiply £77.60 x 4,000 = £310,400. Even at 4% sales you'll make £155,200. Now come on guys... is this serious money or what?

Of course the easy parts to this exercise are finding or creating a product, building a website and then installing email capture. The not quite so easy parts are both generating the list and promoting the website to enable you to grow the list. Doing both are not impossible if you know what you're doing. I've been advising my clients for years about how to do both, and in my next blog I'm going to reveal what the best methods are.

Subscribe to my blog today and don't miss out on any of this vital information. I'll be setting up my consultancy service very soon so if you're already in business and you want some help you'll be able to book my services. In the meantime you can contact me from my website for anything else you might need.

Till next time.



Thursday, 2 June 2016

Your New Online Business Success Story Starts Here

Hi everyone,

First of all, apologies to all my existing readers and followers... Blogger has changed how we access our blogs and I'm not able to get back into my original blog so I've had to create a new one.

It doesn't matter though because I'm also changing... no I'm not going through a stage of metamorphosis, I'm changing the writing style and content of my new blog. It's going to be more geared towards helping new startups get a foothold and get on the right track to success.

For those of you who don't know me, I'm Bill Knight. I've been in business for well over 30 years. Most of those have been spent as a freelance direct response copywriter, affiliate marketer, video marketer, ebay seller and website designer. I'm also proficient in Photoshop and many other creative software. My mind holds a goldmine of information, which I'm happy to share with you.

Okay, enough already...

In this first new post I'm going to give you some information about how to make money on the Internet... interested? Good!

For any newbies wanting to start an online business or for those who have a fledgling business and want to know what to do to make more money, here are some ideas you can try.

Probably one of the easiest ways to make money is to promote other people's products for a commission. This is called affiliate marketing. By learning about this subject you can work the system at both ends. By that I mean you can promote their products and you'll learn how to get others to promote yours.

Let's start with Clickbank (www.clickbank.com). Go over to Clickbank and open an account... it's free to open and you will have access to many hundreds of products all waiting for you to sell and make money. Is it as easy as that? Well, yes and no. Yes because it's certainly easy to find products that people are willing to buy but the crux of the matter is getting it in front of eyeballs that are firmly attached to credit cards.

Get my drift? Okay, here is your first and most important lesson about making money on the Internet. Whatever you want to sell or promote you need traffic. It's plain and simple. The more people you can get to view your product links, website, blog or video... the more chance you will make sales.

This lesson applies to just about anything you want to sell. That's why product creators rely on affiliates to promote their products. Okay so they make less than the product price but they have more chance of making many sales with an army of affiliates doing all the groundwork. I kid you not, many product creators have become millionaires by simply doing this.

On the other hand, many top affiliates have also made a ton of cash from promoting other people's products. These guys need each other, and you will need others to help you get what you want too. The Internet is just way too big to be able to make any serous money all by yourself. That doesn't mean it can't be done. It just means it's easier... and we like easy don't we?

Okay, so you've looked through the Marketplace on Clickbank and you've found a couple of products that there's a market for... oh yes... do your research. There's no point at all in promoting something jut because you like it, other people need to want to buy it. The best way to establish whether a product will sell is if it is already selling. To find out, look at the stats below the product. Pay particular attention to the Gravity score (Grav:). This number represents the number of different affiliates who are making money from promoting the product, and if it's good enough for them...

When you're happy with the product you have selected you need to click on the Promote button link. This will open up a box, in which you will place your "nickname". A nickname is a name you choose when opening your account and it is unique to you. You can also add a tracking ID, which I recommend you do if you are promoting more than one product. That will help you keep track of what products are selling, so you can keep a record of sales.

So, once you do this you will be presented with your own unique affiliate link. You can then promote this link on your website, your blog or Facebook etc. When someone clicks on the link they are directed to the seller's sales page, and if they buy the product you make a commission. Commissions on Clickbank can vary between 50% and 80%. I wouldn't entertain anything less than 50%.

I should also mention here that you should disguise your affiliate link, for two reasons. For many savvy Internet users an affiliate link is quite obvious and they will avoid it. The other reason is some unscrupulous bloodsucking parasites want to steal your commissions... would you believe it? I use a free cloaking service: www.acloaker.com and never had a problem.

The money you make will be credited to your Clickbank account and when your total reaches a certain amount, which used to be $100, and I think it still is, then you will receive a cheque or direct payment, whichever you have selected. If you would like a copy of the product for yourself, then simply click on your own affiliate link and get an instant discount.

Hope you're all still with me...

What next? Oh yes, remember I mentioned traffic? Well you need it, lots of it. The top affiliates pay for traffic and if your budget is large enough then this is the way to go. Just as long as you make more money from sales than you do on your traffic spend, then you're Quids in, Bucks in or Euros in, whichever is your currency. 

There are many sources of traffic but you must ensure you are paying for quality traffic. By that I mean your traffic must be interested in your product. There's no point in sending traffic that's interested in home cooking to your Betting System product. It has to be relevant. You can buy targeted traffic from Google Adwords, Facebook Ads and StumbleUpon. Google doesn't like sending traffic directly to affiliate links so you might have to have the link on a blog or website and promote that instead.

Alternatively, you can try webtrafficgeeks.org or any of the other traffic selling sites. In my experience they are not that good but they have worked for some of my clients. You can also try to generate free traffic. There are so many ways to do this so I'll mention just a few. Write interesting and informative articles and include your affiliate link. Then send the article off to the many article submission websites... and wait. Create a website. I'll be covering websites in much more detail in a later blog so I recommend you subscribe to my blog and keep up. Or you can create a blog and promote it to get lots of followers and then include your affiliate links somewhere in th text.

I get a lot of enquiries for writing articles, blogs and emails just for this purpose. I should also mention that I am also an affiliate marketer and the one way I have most success is with video marketing. In fact it has been so successful I set up my own video marketing business (www.busyvids.co.uk). I'll also be covering this in great detail in a later blog.

Once you've mastered the art of affiliate marketing you can then move onto other forms of the same. If you can generate lots of quality traffic then you might want to look at the CPA offerings from one of the big Cost Per Action companies. The easiest one to get into is Max Bounty (www.maxbounty.com). You have to apply for an account and then they will ask you how are you going to promote their client's products and you simply tell them you'll be using Google Adwords and email marketing or video marketing. They generally let anyone in so you shouldn't have a problem opening an account.

CPA commissions are generally quite small but hey... all you have to do is get people to sign up and you get a commission. In many cases you get paid just for sending leads. Is that simple or what? Okay, time to wrap this one up but before I go here's a checklist:

1. Open a free account with Clickbank
2. Select a product that is already selling
3. Drive traffic to the link by free and paid advertising
4. Rinse and repeat as many times as you want
5. Make money and be successful

I hope you enjoyed reading this blog post and if you did and want more then subscribe and keep in the loop. I'm going to be spilling the beans, so to speak, about all kinds of money making, traffic generation, websites, video marketing, email marketing, article marketing, creating your own product and so much more. I've only ever done this before for a few of my select clients but I will be launching a new website soon offering consultancy services so this is a kind of pre-launch.

Because I know so much about this business my clients have been paying me thousands of pounds and dollars for good advice and top quality writing services. I can both walk the walk and talk the talk. Seeya soon.

Best regards,
Bill Knight