Entrepreneurship for Noobees on Udemy

My partner Boomy Tokan and I released Entrepreneurship for Noobees. It’s the third in our series of business courses to help people wanting to get into online sales and marketing. (The others are Blogging for Noobees and YouTube Success for Noobees).

Starting up your own business can be challenging. You want to be sure it’s not a job that’s taking up more of your time than your old job did. And you want to be sure you’re treating it like a business instead of a hobby. That means you have plans and repeatable processes.

What’s It About

The course starts you off with identifying some important mindset issues. I put in a quiz to help you determine your risk tolerance. Some people are ready to jump in with both feet first. Others want to wade out.

Those who jump in should probably pause a bit to do some planning and research. I posted a cautionary tale about a bakery that closed after about nine months on my other site, Marketing Best Practices. Anyway, I wanted to be sure that I could help people who had the fire in their bellies to start their own business.

Those who wade in will need to identify when is the right time for them to commit to their new business. If they don’t, then it will always be just a hobby.

Why Should I Buy The Course

If you haven’t started yet, then this will get you going quickly with a solid foundation.  If you’re struggling, you may need to step back and get some processes and planning in place. It helps to get your brain thinking about owning a business and not just a job or a hobby.

That and I have a special coupon link for you where it will only cost you $10. I know a lot of people compare it to the price of a cup of coffee, but I won’t. I’ll just say it’s only $10 with no risk. Plus, I really want your feedback. And I want to do a case study on you and how you turned your desire to be an entrepreneur into a successful business.

So click here to check out Entrepreneurship for Noobees for $10 during this introductory release.

Biggest Landing Page Mistake And How To Fix It

I have a wonderful guest post for you this week from Sean D’Souza. I hope you learned as much as I did. I highly recommend his newsletter as well as 5000bc. I’ve also purchased The Brain Audit. It’s the kind of package you need to review once every two to three months to get new ideas on how to refine things. (kind of like Think and Grow Rich).


Biggest Landing Page Mistake And How To Fix It

There’s a reason why I moved from PC to the Mac.

In 2008 I had to do a series of presentations for a radio station.  Since the clients of radio stations are always looking for ways to get the attention of their clients, the presentation of The Brain Audit seemed like the perfect match. If there’s one thing I’m very possessive about, it’s the slides for my presentation.

I tend to make changes, simplifying the content and moving the slides around until the very last minute. Even if I have done the presentation dozens of times before, you can be sure I will be making changes at the very last minute.

In this case, the terms of my contract prohibited me from making those changes at the last minute.

The radio station was putting all their slides together in advance, so all slide decks had to be submitted the week before the presentation. This rattled me enough to show up three hours before I had to make my presentation. The technical crew was more than happy to let me go through a run through of my presentation on the big screen.

As I clicked through the slides, I realised that something was wrong. The presentation I was seeing on the screen looked a bit like my presentation, but somehow it was different.

The weird part was that it looked better than what I had done.

After I had got over the shock of someone tampering with my presentation, I asked the crew how they had gone about changing the presentation. “We didn’t do anything with the presentation itself,” they said. “We just ran it through keynote — which is a presentation software for the Mac.”

That one idea was enough to get me hooked onto the Mac, even though I had used the PC for close to 15 years. The Mac had solved a problem that I didn’t know existed. It had taken the best possible presentation I could muster, and made it far more beautiful than I could imagine.

Since then, I have dumped all my PCs and stuck to the Mac. So does this make me the ideal client?

It does not, because I wasn’t aware of the problem in advance.

To find the ideal client, you have to find someone is already deeply aware of the frustration they are facing. If you find someone like me—someone who’s surprised and delighted, you’re going to get a very shallow rendition of the set of problems the client faces—and most certainly never get to the depth of the biggest problem.

You have to find someone who already has a problem

And the best place to start could be a random place like Facebook. Since everyone already has an opinion on Facebook, you may shortlist your ideal client based on a friend that responds to your question.

You may have a tiny list of subscribers on your e-mail list, and if you send out a request, there’s a good chance that at least a couple of responses will show up in your inbox. If you already have clients like we do, you’re often still like a newbie, especially when you want to launch a new product or service.

Let’s say we want to launch a product on how to take outstanding photos with your iPhone

In many cases it’s easy enough to locate a great client, and it’s more than likely that they would like to take great photos, but don’t know how. Once you interview them over the phone, or in person, you’ll quickly find a series of issues.

– Taking great food pictures with an iPhone
– How to improve your vacation photos
– How to use manual controls with your software
– How to shoot close up or macro photography
– Great portrait photography with Your iPhone
– How to dump the SLR at home and take outstanding photos with your iPhone.

The problem is obvious, isn’t it? How do you choose? All of these problems seem headed in divergent directions.

The answer is: You don’t choose. You get the client to choose.You focus on the problem at hand and dig deeper.

The questions would hinge on the single problem:
– Why do you want to take your iPhone instead of a Nikon?
– What frustrates you when you take the Nikon?
– Can you describe a day on your vacation?
– What are the consequences of taking a heavy camera along?

If you own a Nikon 7000 like I do, you’ll find yourself leaving the camera back in the hotel room a lot.

The Nikon 7000 is a great camera, but it feels like you’re lugging a brick along—and when you take three months off every year, that’s like lugging a brick for 90 whole days.

So unless I’m going on a trip—like the time we went to see orcas in Vancouver, or camels on the road in Australia, I keep the DSLR—that’s the Nikon—in the hotel room.

And once you get me started, I can keep going on and on about the problems of a heavy camera. However, as the interviewer digs deeper, she may find that I like the iPhone for other reasons as well.

I can use a slew of software, improve my photos, use filters, create depth of field (that’s a feeling of fuzziness for objects in the distance)—and do that all before I get back to the hotel. With the Nikon, I have to get back, download the photos into a program like Lightroom, and then I’m chained to my computer, instead of enjoying my vacation.

When you dig deep into a single problem, you get the client to give you a ton of details.

You get them to describe their frustration on that one problem.
You also get a sense of what they experience with that one problem when you ask them to describe their day.And finally, you get the consequences—a truckload of consequences.
You then take the biggest problem and put it in your headline and sub-head on your page

The frustration and the sense of what the client experiences: that needs to go in the first couple of paragraphs, followed closely by the consequences. Which leaves us with a sort of dilemma, doesn’t it? What do we do with all the rest of the problems the client brought up? Do we just get rid of them?

This takes us to the next element—what to do with the rest of the problems.

Next Element : What do you do with the rest of the problems?

The answer is simpler that you think.

Remember the Portabooth—that portable recording booth that you could take on the road with you? Well, it didn’t have one benefit or feature, did it? It has a series of them.

And yet, the client is most interested in the biggest problem. Once you’ve solved the biggest problem, the rest of the features are really a bonus for the client. They are a nice-to-have, but not a deal breaker.

The way to use the rest of the problems brought up by the client is to see whether you want to tackle them in the first place

With the Portabooth, we could bring up the rest of the features and benefits and explain why there was a problem and how the Portabooth solves that problem. Unlike the biggest problem, where you have to go into a lot of detail, you can just use a paragraph or so to explain the rest of the main features.

You bring up the problem—for example: Assembles in seconds Just close two zippers—and describe the problem briefly, before bringing up the solution. Now you’ve taken every one of the remaining features, turned it into a problem, and brought up the solution.

But what if the problems were incredibly divergent, like in the case of the iPhone photo book?

Think about it for a second: Is the book going to show you how to shoot portraits, use manual controls, take pictures of butterflies—as well as show you how to take great food photos? If so, then hey, the product already solves the problem, so simply use the remaining features on the sales page itself.

If the problems the client brought up, don’t fit in with your product or service, then you have to ask yourself: Am I going to include them in this product or service or do I simply focus on one thing?

In Psychotactics land, we’ve focused on one thing

Instead of writing a book of 200 pages, we may restrict ourselves to 59 pages. We’ve come to the conclusion that clients want to get a skill, not more information. But if you’re selling a product like a mixer, for instance, you have a ton of features and benefits.

Even so, it’s better to restrict yourself to just four-five problems being solved.

In today’s world it’s easy to get overwhelmed very quickly, and keeping the features and benefits to just a few is the best way to go.

If, however, you still have a ton of features and benefits and would like to talk about them, then restrict them to bullet points. Bullet points are amazingly effective, because they form a quick summary of the product or service.

And there you have it—the series of steps you need to give your product or service the limelight it needs.
You focus on one.
One plane landing on the tarmac at a time.
It makes for a tidy airport and a very successful landing page!
So what did we cover?
1 How to choose one problem. (If you missed this article click here)
2 Defining why the problem is important.
3 What to do with the rest of the problems.
We looked at the racehorses—and how they bolt out all at once. It seems like a good idea to introduce all our benefits and features, but instead of benefits and features, we need to use a problem.
We get to the problems, by inverting the features and benefits. And then once we have the list of problems, we get the client to choose one. Which is the client’s most pressing problem?
– Trying to write this landing page all by yourself is usually a big waste of time.

You struggle to write it and then the problems are not that which the client experiences. Plus, it’s hard to figure out the emotions the client feels. I’ll ignore my own advice only to come back later and realise what a fool I’ve been.

It’s so much easier to call a client and record their experience. Or better still, take them out to lunch—because you’ll get to drink some wine too. And that’s always more fun. Take your recorder with you and make notes as well. Both are very important.

– Finding a client is always daunting.

The best kind of client is a client that’s already deeply frustrated. Someone who’s been going through a heck of a lot and can describe in great detail what they’re experiencing.

I’ve lugged my camera around a lot to tell you what that feels like and why I leave the camera behind. You may think Facebook isn’t the best place, but you’ll be amazed at how much feedback you can get on Facebook. Are they the best clients ever? Of course not, but once you launch your product or service, you can always tweak your landing page.

– Go deep into the problem. Ask the questions.
* What frustrates you the most? Why does it frustrate you?
* Can you describe a day on your life?
*What are the consequences of postponing this decision? How does it make you feel?
Finally, what do you do with the rest of the problems?

If they fit in with your product or service, then simply put them in as features and benefits. Or as bullets. Talking about features and benefits, there’s a way to write them a lot better than just listing them, and here is where you can find out more about how to maximise the power of features and benefits.

P.S. Take a look at that landing page as well. It shows you how to create a tiny landing page and get the right information across.

P.P.S. Click here to listen to the audio.

Product Offers: Links you should visit

If you suspect that your business could be bringing in a lot more revenue but you don’t have a clue how to make that happen without hype or hassle, 5000bc is a must-have resource.

The information and support I received from Sean and my fellow “cavers” about a single Web page was directly responsible for selling $10,000 worth of books in less than two weeks.

Try it. You won’t regret it.
Find out if 5000bc is for you.
Top-Selling Products Under $50
Is it possible to raise prices and still keep customers?
Find out here.
Do you feel like banging your head against the wall when writing content for the important pages on your website?
Wouldn’t it be just wonderful to have a systematic approach to create the important pages on your website? Find out how here.Do you know why some businesses get wonderful clients, while others seem to get clients that are a pain in the neck? Here is the reason.
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Learning to Stay Focused

RAILTRACK 4AIf you’re like me, you have problems staying FOCUSed. So why did I use caps? FOCUS stands for “follow one course until successful.” If you’ve been around for any length of time, you’ll quickly find out that there’s always a new pitch for a software or a service that will make you instant profits quickly and easily.

It makes profits quickly and easily for the people selling. For us, it requires work. We need to review our plan (you did sign up for my freebie that teaches you how to create an online business plan, right?). Then we need to see if the BSO (that’s Bright Shiny Object) fits in to our plan. Finally, if we choose to buy, we need to spend time learning and setting it up.

Then comes the hard part. We have to persist and work through it. Nothing is really automated.

I have some plugins that allow me to pull PLR (private label rights) content, and then spin it to unique content. You’d think that sounds very automated. And it is. Sort of. I still need to go in and make sure it’s really readable and not bad English. I need to go and find multimedia (images and videos) to embed in the post to provide a more delightful experience for my readers.

But I’m always tempted with the next big thing with videos and whiteboard animation and editors and indexers. What I really need to do is get making more videos and then evaluate if my tools are adequate.

Here’s something to think about. When you’re going through your day to day work on your online business, write down the steps. Come up with a methodology and document it. Then spend some time at the end of the week asking yourself if it’s as smooth as it could be, or if there’s room for optimizing.

Now, here’s the joyful thought. At some point, you’ll be making money from your site, and you will want to outsource some of the boring tasks. Well, guess what? You’ve already done the hard part by documenting it. All you’ll need to do is train and then monitor the results.iStock_000024086772Large

So, persist. Know clearly your goal and work towards it. Document what you’ve learned. And beware of bright shiny objects or at the end of the year when you’re doing your taxes, you’ll slap your head and go “Why did I buy all this stuff I never learned nor used!” Trust me. It’s not fun.