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About once a week I get an e-mail with a subject line or first sentence that begins: “My new book” and then announces publication of the writer’s new book.

Here’s a tip: “My new book” may be the weakest phrase ever used in online copy.

The reason is twofold. First, the phrase begins with “my”, and the reader cares about himself, not you.

Second, the third word in the phrase is “book” and almost no one cares about your new book.

Reason: There are so many books in print today, the very word “book” is a turn-off, signaling a subject of no interest to anyone save the writer.

Back in the day, when we used full-page print ads and direct mail packages to sell books, we used the word “book” in the copy as little as possible because it creates an immediate boredom factor.

Substitutes include “material”, “guide”, “manual”, “program”, “course” and “instructions”.

You can say “book” one or two times in your copy, and alternate with the other terms above.

But if you are selling the book for money, do not use “book” in the headline or lead (if you are giving the book away as a lead magnet, then saying “book” up front is OK).

Another pet peeve of mine is that I hate it when well-meaning readers and fans send me their new book in the mail without asking me if it’s OK to do so.

I already have too much to read and the shelves in the bookcases in my office are already filled with reference materials for various writing projects.

Here’s the other horrible thing about the boom in self-publishing triggered by Amazon and Kindle today: it has caused an out-of-control proliferation of really bad books.

I know that sounds cruel, but as you know, I always give you the unvarnished truth.

And the vast majority of self-published books people send me should just not have been published in the first place.

When people take piano lessons, they are content to play for their own pleasure, and feel no compulsion to rent halls and give concerts, in part because they know they don’t play on a professional level.

But writers are not content to write for their own pleasure. They feel compelled to publish their writing and have it read by other people, hence the popularity of blogs, Facebook, and Kindle.

I have come to the realization that the books I write are not really that important, though some people do tell me they have been helped by them, and for that I am glad.

But I am not writing “Remembrance of Things Past” and most other people aren’t either.

We live in a world where print in general and books in particular play a much smaller role in society than they did a century ago.

Best to remember that writing a book today is a small thing and not terribly important to anyone other than the author—you.

Bob Bly is the author of “World’s Best Copywriting Secrets” and has written copy for more than 100 companies including IBM, Boardroom, Medical Economics and AT&T. He is the author of more than 75 books and a columnist for Target Marketing, Early To Rise and The Writer. McGraw-Hill calls him “America’s top copywriter”.

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Despite what you may think, I would never say that traditional publishing is inherently superior to self-publishing.

What I do say is that I personally prefer traditional publishing to self-publishing both as an author and a reader for several reasons.

First, when a book is published by a mainstream publishing house, it has been vetted.

That means in most cases, at least one entity—a publishing house—thought it was good enough to pay money for it. Not so for self-published books.

Second, traditional publishing is more selective.

A book published by a mainstream publisher has been approved by a committee or board of experienced book editors and marketers.

With self-publishing, there is zero selectivity: anyone on the planet can self-publish whatever they want, whenever they want.

Third, traditionally published books have been edited by professional editors.

Editing is quality control for written communications.

The vast majority of self-published books have not had an editor (separate from the author), and it is apparent in the lack of quality.

Tip: If you are going to self-publish your book, hire a freelance editor. You can find one at the Editorial Freelancers Association.

Fourth, traditionally published books have the edge in marketing, PR, and sales.

I have met many book reviewers for newspapers who will only review books by ‘real’ publishers and dismiss out of hand self-published books—wrongly, in my opinion, but that’s what they do.

The major publishers have sales reps that get books into bookstores vs. the self-publisher has no such sales force.

Traditional publishers admittedly do little marketing for the majority of the titles they put out, but the overwhelming majority of self-publishers have marketing budgets approaching zero.

There have been many self-publishing success stories throughout the years, but they provide only anecdotal proof that self-publishers can succeed.

I suspect—though I cannot prove—that there are thousands of Kindle e-books on Amazon produced by their authors that have sold less than 100 copies each.

Fifth, in traditional publishing, authors have traditionally been paid an advance of four or five figures before they have even written the book.

And we get a royalty on every book sold after the advance is paid back through book sales.

In self-publishing a paperbound book, authors traditionally plunked down thousands of dollars to print a couple of thousand copies of a book that might not sell five copies.

Admittedly, some of this is changing: Thanks to print-on-demand (POD), your self-published paperback can be printed one copy at a time, eliminating a large cash outlay up front.

As for advances, most mainstream publishers still pay them, but they are shrinking. And a small but growing number of traditional publishers are morphing into semi-vanity presses.

Some pay a flat fee and no royalty. Others require authors to buy 5,000 copies of their own book, essentially funding the venture out of their own pockets.

But, while it still exists even in a bastardized form, for me, I want my books published by a real publisher.

Yes, I’m prejudiced in favor of the traditional book publishing model, which is rapidly eroding. But it’s what I grew up with in my book writing career and it’s what I will stick with in my old age until it—and I—fade away.

Bob Bly is the author of “World’s Best Copywriting Secrets” and has written copy for more than 100 companies including IBM, Boardroom, Medical Economics and AT&T. He is the author of more than 75 books and a columnist for Target Marketing, Early To Rise and The Writer. McGraw-Hill calls him “America’s top copywriter”.

The Value Of Making Up Your Mind by Bob Bly

Posted November 21st, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Business

One of the most unappreciated and valuable business skills you can possess is the ability to make quick decisions, and the smaller the decision, the quicker you should make it.

The longer you agonize over decisions, the more likely it becomes that you will never make them at all, and so you won’t move forward and progress toward your goal.

As the saying goes: money loves speed. Successful people are able to make quick decisions and take action swiftly.

Those who agonize over every little move rarely get much done, make much money, or accomplish more than a tiny fraction of their goals and dreams.

I see this often in my online info-marketing business.

Recently, GP sent me a long, dense e-mail ask me all sort of questions about one of my e-books—a book that sells for the princely sum of $29.

When I answered GP’s questions, he said he would think it over and let me know as if I’d be sitting there holding my breath.

GP could not pull the trigger on a $29 investment that could show him how to be much more successful in the business he wanted to get into, in this case online marketing.

This is particularly pitiful for two reasons. First, GP probably spent more than $29 on dinner when he ate out with his friends at TGIs that Friday night.

Second, he would risk nothing to examine the book, because it is sold with a 3-month money-back guarantee: If he didn’t find it valuable, and he let me know within 90 days, he would get a full refund. And—get this—he could still keep the book free!

And yet, despite that, he couldn’t pull the trigger.

If GP agonizes over the decision to look at an e-book risk-free for 90 days, how is he going to make really important and bigger decisions?

Too many people I hear from are held back by “analysis paralysis”.

It’s like me vs. my wife.

If I need a pair of brown shoes, I go online and the first pair I see that I like and are my size, I buy.

She, on the other hand, goes to the biggest shoe store in the area. If she likes the first pair she sees, she will then look at every other pair in the store to make sure there is not something she likes better.

Busy and successful people don’t spend hours making minor decisions, because they have other things to do and the decisions are just not that difficult or important.

They just aren’t.

Bob Bly is the author of “World’s Best Copywriting Secrets” and has written copy for more than 100 companies including IBM, Boardroom, Medical Economics and AT&T. He is the author of more than 75 books and a columnist for Target Marketing, Early To Rise and The Writer. McGraw-Hill calls him “America’s top copywriter”.

CPA Marketing Made Easy

Dr. Amit Pareek is back with another awesome PLR package called “CPA Marketing Made Easy“. With full resell rights, you can also sell the same package and keep 100% profit in your pocket!

– Step-by-Step Training on CPA Marketing
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All you have to do is:

1. Download it
2. Slightly customize it
3. Upload it
4. Send some traffic to it
5. Keep 100% of the profits (including your new buyers list)

Here’s exactly what you’ll get inside!

Module #1: High Quality Training Guide (Valued at $720)
Module #2: Cheat Sheet (Valued at $20)
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Module #4: Top Resources Report (Valued at $20)
Module #5: High Converting Sales Copy (Valued at $320)
Module #6: 6 Professional Minisites (Valued at $160)
Module #7: Doodle Style Sales Video (Valued at $320)
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The more popular the keyword, the more cost-per-click (CPC) it’s going to have. So it’s very important to do your keyword research before you start selecting your keywords as you’re setting up your campaign. The lite version of KeywordSpy is free, but you can also upgrade to the full version and see more results and have more capabilities for a monthly fee. Google used to have its Keyword External Tool, which has since morphed into Google AdWords Keyword Planner. You need a Gmail account to access this free tool. Either of these tools will allow you to enter keywords or keyword phrases and then view popularity (actual search results), as well as what the average CPCs are. This is important for your keyword selection and bidding.

You can also type in your ‘core’ or focus keywords and get additional ad group/keyword ideas. To help refine your search terms, you can also choose broad match, broad match modifier, phrase match, exact match, and negative match.

Source: Wendy Montes de Oca, Target Marketing, 7/29/14

P1 Video MagnetHere is how it goes (usually):

1. You pick a keyword that you think can drive serious traffic to your site.

2. You get a domain and hosting and you build your website around your keyword.

3. You write a bunch of SEO content pieces to make sure Google can rank your site for targeted keyword (or you spend ton of money by outsourcing it).

And all of this takes you about a week in the best-case scenario…or a few weeks, if you don’t know technology or you have a limited budget.

But let me ask you a question: does completion of your website guarantee that you will make MONEY?

The answer is NO!

In most cases it turns out to be a complete waste of time, which you can’t get back, not to mention the other opportunities that you lost because you were busy building that site.

Now, the good news is that with what I am about to reveal to you…

You don’t need to invest weeks in website building (it takes just 5 minutes or less).

You don’t need to get an MBA in SEO to make sure you are targeting the right keywords (goodbye to long and boring training webinars).

And you don’t need to write content for Google…

It all can be done with just a few click.

You can literally take 900 keywords and turn them to laser-targeted and unique content pages with just a few clicks.

There is nothing like this out there, so make sure to watch this short video.

Facebook + TeeSpring = $12,938

Posted November 19th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Teespring

T Shirt Titan

Did you see this yet?

It’s the easiest way to sell t-shirts on Facebook!

You can make $30 by selling just ONE t-shirt…

People are doing this daily, so why wait another minute?

This guy Chris…He sold over $10k of t-shirts in 30 days…

And he AUTOMATED pretty much the whole thing!

You gotta see this software that makes the system work.

In this video, he explains how TeeSpring works and gives you a 20-minute demo of all his software.

But, personally, I think it’s pretty self-explanatory really:

1. Facebook is the most profitable opportunity in 2014.
2. You can make $10-30 each time someone buys your T-Shirts
3. T Shirt Titan is the only system for this. Oh, and it’s automated :)

Some quick Q&As on what T-Shirt Titan is all about:

===========================

Q: What is T Shirt Titan?
A: It’s THE system on how to profit by selling t-shirts on Facebook.

Q: What’s included with Titan?
A: 4 software tools, 8 hours of training & 1 single PDF document. Everything is there on one page.

Q: Does the software work on Mac & PC?
A: Yes. You access all 4 software from your browser. It will even work on tablets & smartphones!

Q: Why should I buy now?
A: Very soon, the price will increase. It’s possible that the offer may even be pulled.

Q: Will I get another chance to buy if I miss out?
A: Perhaps. But it will likely cost more to get everything on offer today.

============================

Click here to take advantage of the massive discount. You’ll get instant access to everything within under a minute.

You must act now.

This is a LIMITED opportunity with a LIMITED time window.

Good luck!

Best colors to use on your landing pages

Posted November 19th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Website Development

On my sales pages the type is black with blue and red used as second color, mainly in heads and subheads, for emphasis. My webmaster also uses brown, gray, green, and sometimes orange as a background color for the screen surrounding the sales copy; the copy itself is on white.

According to marketing guru Debbie Allen, associations for these colors are as follows:

Black: seriousness, authority, power, and boldness
Blue: trustworthiness, success, security, authority, seriousness, and professionalism
Red: excitement, strength, love, passion, impulse, action, adventure, aggressiveness
White: purity, cleanliness, devotion, simplicity
Orange: celebration, fun, youth, affordability, excitement
Green: health, freedom, freshness, healing, and nature
Brown: earth, nature, simplicity, richness, and helpfulness
Gray: authority, professionalism, earnestness, and practicality

Note: I was surprised not to see green associated with wealth and money. It made sense to see orange associated with affordability, as fliers for sales and discounts are often printed in orange.

Source: Debbie Allen newsletter, 7/15/14

ClickBank UniversityYou and I are so lucky.

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Straight from the horse’s mouth, ClickBank has designed and launched its first ever product, a training program that unveils the secrets behind their most successful merchants and super affiliates…

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There’s no need to figure this all out for yourself.

Follow a time-proven path to success on ClickBank with a roadmap created for you BY ClickBank!

It’s the nearest thing to “fool proof” I’ve ever seen. Take a look at ClickBank University.

Ideal length for whitepapers

Posted November 18th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Content Publishing

Whitepaper guru Gordon Graham says the sweet spot for whitepapers is 6 to 8 pages of content. Add a front cover, contents page, and about the company and you’re up to a total document of 10 or 11 pages. But what about those who say that readers want much shorter white papers today?

“Many marketing people today want to achieve the impact of a great whitepaper, without making the investment to develop one, and without asking their prospects to deal with a substantial document,” says Gordon. “But I don’t believe there’s any shortcut.” Graham says that anything with less than 4-5 solid pages of content is hard to call a “whitepaper” because there just isn’t the space to develop much of an argument. He adds, “The trouble with a 2-3 pager is that it almost always becomes a brochure or data sheet, without much capacity for reframing an issue, redrawing a market space, or helping a business person understand an issue, solve a problem, or make a decision.

“To me that’s the real definition of a whitepaper. So I’d say for sure, cut the flab and make your whitepapers as concise as possible. But don’t think 3 pages is going to do the same job as 6 or 8.”

AudelloAudio marketing is not dead yet. Far from it, do you know there are tons of podcast distribution networks that can give you instant access to literally millions of subscribers?

People are waiting to listen to what you have to offer!

Now you have Audello, a complete software and platform for podcast and audio marketing.

This software gives you the possibility to instantly create podcast and audio content and upload them to podcast distribution networks to get the most possible number of their audience, so that you can build huge e-mail lists and then turn your e-mail subscribers into buyers by promoting to them your CPA, affiliate or in-house offers.

The podcast market is growing fast because it has a certain flexibility advantage over video: podcasts can be watched or listened anywhere including your phone, computer, or even your car because they can stream easily and therefore are easily accessible which makes it great for podcasters to tap into a massive, targeted group.

The operational and technological aspects of podcasting are what challenge most people, but Audello is designed to make the creation and publishing of podcasts and tracking podcast performance very easy for novices.

No matter what niche you are in, Audello can literally transform your business by tapping into a huge pool of prospects who are ready to lend you their ears. Don’t miss out on your new-found marketplace! Click here to discover how much more powerful Audello is. I can’t say enough of its features and benefits!

There is an old saying that a direct mail package without a salesletter is not at all a direct mail package…it’s just a brochure in an envelope.

To answer your question: Yes, every direct mail package should include a letter. As Peggy Hatch, publisher of Target Marketing explains: “A letter is the one opportunity for the writer to make an emotional connection with the reader. All else in the package—circular, invitation, order mechanism—are rational.”

Self-mailers of course do not have letters, but I often design one panel of my self-mailers as a faux letter. Reason: the copy framed as a letter makes more of a personal and emotional connection than the more sterile promotional segments of the mailer.

Source: Peggy Hatch, Target Marketing, 7/9/14

Beware the customer who asks the price right away.

Posted November 16th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Business

Watch out for prospects who ask about price right up front. Sometimes, even before saying hello, buyers ask about price. Often this is a sign that the prospect is a price shopper and the primary factor in her purchase decision is getting the lowest price. Not the kind of client you want to have.

Talking about price too soon puts the entire focus on money. While salespeople can’t ignore the question, most buyers—other than price shoppers—will accept the explanation that more has to be learned about their specific needs before price can be discussed.

Source: Customer Experience Insight, 7/8/14.

Here’s a great Amazon/eBay product research tool.

Posted November 16th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Research

AMA Sniper

The AMA Sniper is a complete software that gives Internet marketers all the info they need to find profitable Amazon products, eBay products, bestsellers, hot reviewed products and profitable keywords, to name a few of the features.

Newbie marketers out there wanting to get started with Amazon affiliate marketing or existing product vendors who need a market research tool will find AMA Sniper perfect for them.

AMA Sniper is practical, clear and totally beginner-friendly.

No more frustration, wasted time and headaches. Watch the video to see how it works.

Most Powerful Video Creation Tool Ever?

Posted November 15th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Audio/Video Marketing

Explaindio Video CreatorCreating high quality, standout video has never been this simple. In the past, creating high quality video was basically left to “tech geeks” and to Internet marketers who could afford to hire “tech geeks” to create the video for them. But that’s all changed now with the debut of Explaindio Video Creator.

This powerful software program allows anyone and any small businesses, regardless of their experience level, to create professional-appearing videos.

You can create:

o Video Sales Letters
o Marketing videos
o Viral advertisement videos
o Training videos
o Product Promotion Videos
o Business Promotion Videos
o Explainer Videos
o Product Review Videos
o And much, much more

This software is plug-and-play easy, turning you from video novice into video expert in a matter of minutes AND opening new doors of opportunity in video marketing, like providing video production as a service!

Explaindio Video Creator is being called the biggest breakthrough in video creation technology in years! Get your copy at the special one-time low price. You’ll never find this fully-loaded version of Explaindio Video Creator priced this low again.

10 marketing tactics Americans say they despise

Posted November 15th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Business

1. Direct mail that looks like it has a bill, fake check, or is otherwise official-looking.

2. Pop-up ads on websites.

3. Ads for nutritional supplements with exaggerated claims.

4. Videos you have to sit through before reaching web content.

5. Products advertised as “made in America” that are not.

6. Free offers with strings attached.

7. TV ads louder than the program.

8. Ads targeted based on purchases, demographics, or behavior.

9. Product placement in movies and TV.

10. Billboards.

Source: Consumer Reports, 6/14, p. 11

Qualify your prospects with BANT

Posted November 14th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Business

1. Budget: what are they willing to spend to buy the product or service?

2. Authority: who needs to be involved in the purchase decision?

3. Need: what needs or conditions must exist before your product would be of value to the potential customer?

4. Timing: How soon will the buying decision be made?

Source: John Coe, The Fundamentals of B2B Sales and Marketing, McGraw-Hill, p. 127

3 easy ways to get unstuck when stuck on a task

Posted November 13th, 2014 by Nelson Tan. Filed under Other Stuff

1. If you are stuck for more than 15 minutes, switch tasks.

2. Instead of working on the problem continuously for hours, schedule shorter, more frequent sessions over several days.

3. Keep a list of problem tasks and glance at it when not at work; a new context can lead to a fresh perspective.

Source: Ron Friedman, Harvard Business Review blog, 7/9/14


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