Start Your Own Information Marketing Business-Excerpt by entpress



          Escape Hours
           for Dollars:
      Do the Work
    Once and Get Paid
      Many Times

            T     here have never been greater, more diverse,

more lucrative opportunities for everyone—both very experienced,

successful entrepreneurs and rank beginners—in the field of infor-

mation marketing. As the president of the Information Marketing

Association, I thought I’d begin by defining what information
                                                marketing is, providing a bit of personal background, and giving you a quick preview
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                of what you can expect in the rest of this book.
                                                    Information marketing is responsive to and fueled by the ever-increasing pressure
                                                on people’s time. Businesspeople and consumers alike need information provided to
                                                them in convenient forms. In some cases, they need an extension of the information;
                                                methods and strategies that might have been taught to them ten years ago are now
                                                done for them. The information industry encompasses products like traditional books,
                                                audio programs, videos, or DVDs that you might buy in a store, from a catalog, or
                                                online; magazines; newsletters; ebooks; membership websites; teleseminars and
                                                webinars; tele-coaching programs; and seminars and conferences—and combinations
                                                thereof. The possible topics are almost endless. People are buying information on
                                                every imaginable topic, from better sex to teaching parrots to talk, to gardening, to
                                                investing in real estate foreclosures, to running businesses. Information marketing,
                                                then, is about identifying a responsive market with high interest in a particular group
                                                of topics and areas of expertise, packaging information products and services matching
                                                that interest (written/assembled by you or by others or both), and devising ways to
                                                sell and deliver it. If you can name it, somebody is packaging and profitably selling
                                                information about it.
                                                    It’ll be instructive to give you a random list of topics and markets these businesses
                                                cover and then a couple more detailed examples. Random list of subjects: yoga for golfers,
                                                investing in tax lien certificates, extreme fitness, persuasive voice skills for business, how
                                                to get women to approach you, how to make money on eBay, how to learn gunsmithing
                                                at home as a hobby or a business . . . and in business niches: marketing systems,
                                                management, or finance information for restaurant owners, dentists, chiropractors, auto
                                                repair shop owners, real estate agents, insurance agents, menswear retailers, jewelry
                                                store owners, pest control operators, or even professional magicians.
                                                    As an example of a business niche, consider IMA member Rory Fatt, who owns
                                                Restaurant Marketing Systems. Rory has more than 100 restaurant owners each
                                                paying $10,000 yearly to be in his top-level coaching program; nearly 4,000 buying
                                                and using his advertising, marketing, and business “kits”—information products
                                                ranging in price from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars—and subscribing to
                                                his newsletter; nearly 500 attending his annual multiday conference. He also provides
                                                prefab websites, a loyalty points program (like a frequent flyer program), and other
                                                products and services. These products are sold using print ads in trade journals, direct
                                                mail, websites and email, and teleseminars. It is a multimillion-dollar-a-year business
                                                built from scratch in about five years. Rory has only two employees, and he works from
                                                home most of the time. He takes a lot of time off to be with his family, and they take
                                                at least two extended vacations each year. And maybe what’s most significant is this:
                                                Rory has never owned, operated, or managed a restaurant.

    Quickly, a few other examples from the IMA’s membership: Gene Kelly, who made

                                                                                          1 / Escape Hours for Dollars: Do the Work Once and Get Paid Many Times
more than $1 million this year selling gunsmithing and related home study courses to
hobbyists. Scott Tucker, who after only 18 months, creating his information businesses
from scratch, is bringing in as much as $2 million a year while still working full time
as a mortgage broker. Ron and Jill Wolforth, similar income, selling information on
“hitting” to parents of Little League baseball players. I could go on and on and on.
   In the last 30 years, information marketing has gone from “mail order” to the
much bigger, broader, hugely profitable arena of opportunities it is today. People now
routinely go from zero to $10,000 to $100,000 a month and more, in just a matter of
   Information marketers do not have any special talents, secret knowledge, or
remarkable skills. Everything you need to get started is between the covers of the book
you are holding right now.
    I got started in information marketing because I was tired of working ever
harder as a consultant and continuing to fall behind. During the summer of 2001, I
completely changed my consulting business. I reduced the number of clients I served
by one-third, reduced the number of employees from 20 to 2, and over the next year,
tripled my fees.
   In the beginning of 2004, I realized I had not accomplished enough but I was
making more money than ever. Every week I was banking money for savings and
charitable giving. I was working about 30 to 35 hours a week and spending the rest of
the time on hobbies or with my family. However, I realized I was topped out. There
was no way I could double my income without taking on a lot more work or employees.
    In a consulting business, people pay you for your services. To double the amount
of income, you have to double your fees or double the amount of services you provide.
When you’ve maxed out your fees, your only choice is to work more hours or to hire
employees to work those hours. Either way, you increase your headaches.
   For many years, I had watched the world of information marketers. There were
people who had created an audio program with six cassette tapes and a manual. They
could create that program once and sell it many times for years. All they had to do
was advertise their product, and new orders came in. What’s better, they could set
up systems so a vendor shipped products. They could be making sales, with money
deposited directly into their checking accounts, and they could be anywhere in the
world, even on vacation. This was something I had to investigate.
    I began creating products. At first, some manuals and an audio program. Over
time, I created more complicated products, and I have created dozens of products on a
joint venture basis with other info-marketers—they have the reputation, and I use my
marketing/product creation knowledge to help get the business started.

                                                    Today I am still making money from
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                products I created several years ago. In          Smart Tip
                                                2007, I hosted a small seminar limited to 12      Information marketing
                                                attendees. After preparing for the session I      allows you to do the work
                                                sat at a table for two days with a video camera   to create a product once and sell
                                                operator at the other end. However, all these     that product over and over again
                                                                                                  for many years.
                                                years later, I still generate sales from that
                                                weekend of work so many years ago.
                                                   Can you imagine a job in which you work really hard for a month, and then get paid
                                                again and again for that work for many years? In the information marketing business,
                                                you do the work once and then get paid many times because your marketing systems
                                                generate sales.
                                                    Furthermore, each time I create a new product revenue stream, that stream gets
                                                added to the streams I have already created. I begin each year with assets that will
                                                generate sales whether I work a day or not. Then any profit I generate from work I do
                                                is stacked on top of what comes in without work.
                                                   In 2006, a group of info-marketers and I were talking. While there is a lot
                                                of info-marketing knowledge out there, it’s spread out in too many places. They
                                                suggested that I work with Dan Kennedy and Bill Glazer to create the Information
                                                Marketing Association. The association could serve as a central repository for
                                                industry knowledge.
                                                    The core mission of the Information Marketing Association is to make it easy to
                                                start and operate information marketing businesses. An important part of that mission
                                                is to separate the promises from the reality.
                                                   In information marketing, your raw material is knowledge. I read about 26 books
                                                a year and more than 40 magazines a month. The reason? Reading is the way I
                                                stay ahead, the way I stay in touch with what’s going on, the way I excel. I’ve seen
                                                patterns in another industry, so I can teach others what they need to know to become
                                                    If I had to give you the single most important info-marketing strategy, it would be
                                                to invest in your personal education through observations, reading, and testing.
                                                   Before I explain how to create your own information marketing business, let’s talk
                                                about why you’d want to build one of these unique moneymakers.
                                                   Here are the six advantages of an information marketing business:

                                                   1. Replaces manual labor by “multiplying yourself” and leveraging what you know
                                                   2. Buyers of information products buy more
                                                   3. Small amount of interaction with buyers is possible

   4. Few staff members are necessary

                                                                                             1 / Escape Hours for Dollars: Do the Work Once and Get Paid Many Times
   5. Small investment to get started
   6. Large profit potential

   So, let’s talk about these advantages.

               1. Replaces Manual Labor by
                “Multiplying Yourself” and
               Leveraging What You Know
   How does the information marketing business replace manual labor by “multiplying
yourself” and leveraging what you know? (“Leveraging” is just a one-word way to say
“makes what you know do the work for you.”)
    Whether you’re working for someone else or you’re a professional selling your
services by the hour or by the job, you are being paid for what you produce. The
moment you stop producing, you stop getting paid. This is true for everyone, even
for professionals such as attorneys, doctors, CPAs, and businesspeople who have large
incomes. Trying to multiply yourself by hiring employees to increase the amount of
product you can sell is full of hassles. You have the employee who leaves and takes
clients with him. You have training issues. You have liability issues even if the employee
does a good job. There are hundreds of ways an employee can get the business owner
into trouble. The work and the aggravation never end.
   With an information marketing business, you create a product once, and you’re
done. It takes a lot of work to create the product, but you can sell it many times, often
over a period of several years, without having to do any additional work. Creating an
information marketing business is a terrific way to multiply yourself in a way that few
other businesses allow. With an information marketing business, you take information
you already know and create a product.
    You might think you have to be a genius and invent a newfangled device or identify
a trend before it happens. You might worry that if you create a product, you won’t
know how to protect it through the trademark and patent process. You might not have
any idea how to find a manufacturing and distribution company to put your product
on the market.
   With an information marketing business, everything you need to create a new
product is already inside you. You don’t need dozens of experts. You don’t need

                                                newfangled distribution methods. An information marketing business allows you
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                to take the information, the secrets, the techniques, the things you already know, and
                                                leverage them. That’s the easy way to multiply yourself.
                                                   You may have a hobby and find yourself answering other people’s questions in
                                                online chat rooms about what you do. If that’s true, you can be sure there are plenty
                                                of other people who have not discovered those online discussion groups. You can
                                                package what you know into an information product and make money with your own
                                                information marketing business.
                                                   Or you may have developed great ways to perform services in a particular business.
                                                You can leverage that knowledge by creating a product to show others how to do what
                                                you do. By creating your product one time, you provide that business solution over
                                                and over again instead of performing the service yourself each time. That’s how you
                                                multiply yourself and leverage what you know!

                                                             2. Buyers of Your Information
                                                                 Products Will Buy More
                                                   People often say to me, “I’m already a consultant. If I create an information product
                                                that explains my entire process, won’t people just do it themselves and stop hiring me
                                                to do work for them?” Absolutely not.
                                                   People who buy your information products are much more likely to hire you to
                                                perform services than other customers to whom you market. Quite simply, having
                                                your own published information product makes you the obvious expert. It shows the
                                                customer the complexity of the services and the special ability you have to perform
                                                them. The only possible conclusion for the buyer is that he should hire you when
                                                he needs additional help with his business or hobby. Publishing your
                                                own information product only increases
                                                the services you’re currently providing and
                                                expands your business far beyond what          Smart Tip
                                                you’re doing now.                              Info-marketing’s leading
                                                                                               speaker and consultant,
                                                   In addition, the people who buy
                                                                                               Dan Kennedy, says, “Most business
                                                your information product will buy other
                                                                                               owners get a customer to make a
                                                information products from you, whether         sale. Information marketers make
                                                they are products you create yourself or       a sale to create a new customer.”
                                                products you license from others. You can

also partner with other information marketers to sell your products or pay them to

                                                                                           1 / Escape Hours for Dollars: Do the Work Once and Get Paid Many Times
create products for you. Once you find a customer who wants information about a
particular subject, that customer will continue to buy information from you on that
    Encouraging repeat business helps you further leverage yourself. You spend a certain
amount upfront to identify potential customers and to sell them your information
product. That first product can then be used to sell them other information products.
Once you’ve gotten a customer, you’re going to be able to sell that customer many
things in the future, for as long as you continue to provide high-quality information
at a good price.

            3. Small Amount of Interaction
                with Buyers Is Possible
    One of the best things about the information marketing business is that very few
customers insist on coming to your business location to buy your products. This
means you can work at home with your computer in a closet or build your information
product on your kitchen table. You don’t have to worry about customers showing up
at your door to buy your new book. You can create products and sell them online from
your beach home or as you vacation across the world. As long as you’ve got a way to
create a product, you don’t have to be in any particular location for people to buy it.
Not only is this exceptionally convenient, but it also helps you get into this business
with very little overhead expense.

                     4. Few Staff Members
                         Are Necessary
    The information marketing business is a terrific business because you don’t need
a lot of people to run it. Many info-marketers have no employees and instead pay an
independent contractor to help maintain the customer database, ship products, and
handle customers’ questions. This is known as “outsourcing.” You can literally operate
a business that makes well over $1 million a year with very little staff and very little
operating overhead.


                                                        5. Small Investment to Get Started
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                    The information marketing business does not require a lot of equipment. It doesn’t
                                                require fancy offices, furniture, or multiple computers. It doesn’t require special
                                                licenses (in most cases). And it doesn’t require special education or degrees. You just
                                                need to leverage the information you already know. How? By 1) identifying a market
                                                of people who are excited about the information you have, 2) creating a product those
                                                people want, and 3) offering it to them in a persuasive way.
                                                   That’s why you can get into the information marketing business with a relatively
                                                low startup budget.
                                                    One word of caution: Many info-marketers do not invest enough in their
                                                marketing and end up with a very slow start. Investing a little money in
                                                marketing upfront will increase revenue
                                                more quickly. You can take a “stair-step”
                                                approach by investing a small amount in        Smart Tip
                                                your first campaign and reinvesting your       Information marketing
                                                sales revenues into the next campaign. You     businesses require an
                                                can increase your marketing investments as     investment in marketing so cus-
                                                                                               tomers know the products exist.
                                                you continue to have success in selling your
                                                                                               However, it is still one of the
                                                product. That way, you can start with a very   least expensive businesses to get
                                                modest investment, but by continuing to        started because you don’t need to
                                                reinvest profits into making new sales and     invest in inventory, structures, and
                                                getting new customers, you can build your      a retail location.
                                                    Just remember: You don’t have to go to school for 12 years, you don’t have to pass
                                                any exams, you don’t have to buy special equipment, and you don’t have to have huge
                                                facilities. But you must be willing to put some money on the table to find potential
                                                customers and to market your product to them. If you try to do this business without
                                                any investment at all, you’re certain to fail.
                                                   Even the smallest franchise has an initial investment of $10,000 to $15,000, and
                                                there are continuing fees. Don’t be fooled into thinking you can start an information
                                                marketing business with no investment. Some think the moment they create a product
                                                and put a sales page on a website that people suddenly are going to flood that site and
                                                buy their products. That is a myth. Don’t believe it.
                                                    But don’t be discouraged! This is a very easy business. This is a business with a lot
                                                of profitability, but you will not create a business that generates more than $1 million a
                                                year by investing nothing. You must be willing to test a marketing strategy to find new
                                                customers (known in the business as a front-end marketing funnel) and test it until it

produces positive results. When you get positive results, you must invest in expanding

                                                                                            1 / Escape Hours for Dollars: Do the Work Once and Get Paid Many Times
that marketing campaign and growing your customer base.

                   6. Large Profit Potential
   Many info-marketers are making million-dollar incomes through their information
marketing businesses. One day, without any products, without any customers, they
went out and gave it a shot. They researched potential customers, they found out what
those customers wanted the most, they offered it to them in a compelling way, and
then they continued to sell their products until they were making a lot of money. Some
info-marketers have $50 million to $100 million businesses. Some info-marketers are
making in the high single-digit millions and have five to ten staff members. Other
info-marketers are making a half-million dollars with one or two staff people. This is
a business that is completely scalable, that is, you can make it as small or as large as
you want.
   But don’t think an information business doesn’t require work. It does. You will
have to work hard, just the same as any other entrepreneur does. Just like you see
entrepreneurs working hard in the mall, in a retail store, or in a new restaurant they’ve
created, you should plan on working hard on your information marketing business.
The good news is, if you build an information marketing business and put in the
necessary work, you can eventually replace your manual labor by multiplying yourself
and leveraging what you know to create new products. Your customers are going to
buy more from you in the future. You can run your business with little interaction
with your customers. You can be successful using a very small staff. It takes a small
investment, and the payoff can be huge—if you stick with it and continue to develop
your business.


  Eliminating the
 Fog and Clarifying
     Your Target

               M             ost beginning info-marketers think the

first step is to create a product to sell. After all, if you are planning

to sell a home study course, shouldn’t you immediately get started

creating it?

               Before you jump into product creation, however, you

must clearly define the market you are offering your product to.
                                                                                               Clearly defining and researching your
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                  Smart Tip                                market allows you to tailor your sales
                                                  The first step of creat-                 messages for better response, it reduces
                                                  ing your info-marketing                  your startup marketing budget by focusing
                                                  business is to clearly define your       your communication on fewer people, and
                                                  potential market.
                                                                                           it helps you make money a lot faster than if
                                                                                           you create your product first.
                                                   There are three broad categories of markets for our info-marketing products. First
                                                there are the big category or “everybody” markets that most people are interested in,
                                                such as weight loss, health care, or financial planning. These big category markets can
                                                have 100,000 or even a million people in them. Second, there are subcultures based
                                                on interests, such as hunters, quilters, or model airplane flyers. Different kinds of
                                                hobbyists have specific interests. Third, there are professional niches, such as dentists,
                                                chiropractors, restaurant owners, business owners, and professionals.
                                                    Many info-marketers go for number one, the large markets. There are obvious
                                                opportunities there. But there are also a lot of competitors. If you’re just starting out,
                                                those large markets can be challenging, even in specific niches. Think about generating
                                                traffic to your website and doing search engine optimization. Let’s say you’re in a
                                                financial niche of foreign exchange in which you’re teaching people how to buy and
                                                sell different types of currency to make a profit, moving their money from euros to
                                                yen to English pounds to U.S. dollars, etc. Even in this fairly specific “everybody”
                                                niche, there are probably 30 or 40 different marketers, many of them funded by large
                                                financial capital investment firms. These firms have a dozen people doing search
                                                engine optimization for them. And so for you to try to compete against them is going
                                                to be difficult. In those everybody niches, you will be up against huge players that are
                                                well financed, and it can be quite challenging to compete. And it’s going to be that way
                                                in almost every different type of marketing.
                                                    This is where a lot of folks believe they have some unique way to generate customers.
                                                Most often, it’s not unique but even when it is, it won’t be long before you’ll have 30
                                                competitors or even 300 of them, depending on which niche you choose, that have
                                                figured it out and are able to invest a lot of money in using your tools to win customers
                                                for themselves.
                                                    Subcultures are very good places to
                                                start. Golfers are a great example. If you’re
                                                                                                   Smart Tip
                                                a golfer, you know there’s really no end to
                                                                                                   There are three main cat-
                                                what you’re willing to buy to improve your
                                                                                                   egories of markets: every-
                                                game. And I’ve seen this over and over again       body markets, hobbyists markets,
                                                in other subcultures, for example, hunters         and professional niches.
                                                and fishermen. Fishermen in particular are

                                          crazy buyers. But you’ll often find an upper

                                                                                            2 / Eliminating the Fog and Clarifying Your Target
  Smart Tip                               limit to price with hunters and fishermen.
  “Everybody” markets                     While they’ll buy the new gizmo or they’ll
  are huge, with unlim-                   buy the boats, the motors, and the guns,
  ited potential, but they can be         most of them aren’t going to go to seminars
  extremely competitive and expen-        to learn how to hunt or fish. If they are going
  sive to get started.                    somewhere, it’s on a fishing or a hunting
                                          trip with their buddies. Getting them to buy
information products at a high price can be a challenge. But they’ll often buy a lot of
product at a low price. Many info-marketers have great businesses in this subculture.
But prices are frequently low in subniches, which is why many info-marketers focus on
the third market category, niche businesses.
   Take, for example, restaurant owners or chiropractors. If they are convinced that
your program is going to help them generate more customers, getting them to write
a $500 corporate check isn’t nearly as difficult as it is to get someone to write a $500
check out of an individual checking account. A $500 check is a lot of money to an
individual, but not so much to a business. That is why you see so many info-marketers
in professional niches. It’s so much easier to push price and get more. Going to
professional niches rather than subcultures was one of the innovations of the info-
marketing business 10 or 15 years ago.
   Here are some important considerations as you decide which market is best for
    Affinity is number one. Most of the people enter info-marketing because they
want to change industries and do something completely different. They want to find
something else to do. They’ve been in a particular niche or a particular industry for
15 or 20 years, and they are sick of it. They want out. And I have to tell you, I’ve been
in that position, too. “There’s nothing of value here. There’s nothing adventurous.
There’s no way I can make any money at it. I’m just sick of it. I want to go do something
else.” Sound familiar?
   Still, affinity with a market is probably one of the most important things you can
have. And so if you come to me and we talk, chances are it won’t be long before I have
you right back in the same market. You won’t be disappointed, though. I’ll have you
back in your market in a way that you can really make money. You actually
have a head start because you know so much
more about the business, the industry, the
                                                   Smart Tip
systems, and the terminology. By working in
                                                   Hobbyists are passionate
an industry for even just a couple of years,       buyers; however, they are
you build up a lot of knowledge about the          often price sensitive.
way people think and do things. And you’ve

                                                                                          got a story to tell. You’ve been in the
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                  Smart Tip                               business, and so you can tell a story of “I
                                                  Professional niches are                 was struggling and I hated this, but now I’m
                                                  often underserved, prod-                successful.”
                                                  ucts can be well received, and
                                                                                             You will discover that affinity with your
                                                  because they are operating busi-
                                                  nesses, your products can create       market is a very important asset. And so I ask
                                                  demonstrable return on invest-         you, if you’re one of the 80 percent who are
                                                  ment, allowing you to charge           frustrated with what you’re doing and you
                                                  higher prices.                         want out, think about this: Can you “make
                                                                                         friends” again with your industry and see it
                                                from a new light? Your current industry could very well be the market that is going to
                                                be the most profitable for you.
                                                    Another obvious market consideration is size. I know folks that do very well selling
                                                to professional speakers, a market of about 5,000 individuals. Some info-marketers
                                                are making $1 million to $2 million a year in that niche. There’s no reason why you
                                                can’t succeed in a market of 4,000 or 5,000. If the market is 50,000 or 60,000, there
                                                are even more opportunities to grow your business. It’s important to know the size of
                                                the market and use it as a gauge to evaluate your opportunities. If you have a market
                                                size of 50,000, for example, there may be more media to use as well as more vendors
                                                to work with that are promoting themselves to the industry. As a general rule, if your
                                                market is a little larger, there are often more opportunities in the niche.
                                                    When considering a market, look at trends. Is the niche growing? Is it shrinking?
                                                Are a lot of industries going through consolidation? Are large companies buying smaller
                                                companies, or are companies merging to create super companies? I’m looking forward
                                                to the day when there is a host of new startup companies. I think that day is coming.
                                                But for now, it’s all about consolidation. We haven’t seen a huge renaissance
                                                of new small-business startups yet. But what are the specific trends in
                                                your industry? Is it aging? Is new technology
                                                killing the business? What types of things are     Smart Tip
                                                happening? You need to know the answers            Affinity is how well you
                                                to these questions to evaluate if a market will    already know a market.
                                                be profitable for you.                             Someone who has been a doctor
                                                    Churn is another important aspect              for 20 years has a lot of affinity
                                                when considering a market. One of the              with the physician market. That
                                                                                                   doctor could decide to create
                                                most common examples of churn is in the
                                                                                                   info-marketing products for elec-
                                                real estate industry. In Florida, something        tricians, but he wouldn’t have as
                                                like one in six people have had a real estate      much affinity with electricians as
                                                license at some point in their life. Real          he hasn’t been one before.
                                                estate is a business in which people are often

joining (and leaving) the industry. They may be in a business for a year or less, 18

                                                                                               2 / Eliminating the Fog and Clarifying Your Target
months if they really stick it out, and then they’re gone. That creates a unique market
for info-marketers because there is a new crop of customers every six months. And
these customers are looking for new techniques and ways to succeed. They’re trying
to figure out how to find clients, generate listings, and sell homes. That provides
many interesting opportunities for info-marketers. So, churn, the number of people
entering the profession on an ongoing basis, is an important number when it comes to
evaluating a market’s viability.
    Next is reachability. How are you going to access the customers in your market, to
get them to hear about you and your products? I hesitate to create a business today if
there isn’t an available list of the customers that I can reach by snail mail. I want a list
of people I can reach with mail delivered by those guys in the blue shorts driving those
trucks with the steering wheels on the wrong side! Why? The existence of that list
tells me I’ll be able to get my marketing material in front of individuals in that market.
But there can also be magazines. There can be email lists. There can be websites that
members of the market frequent. But the question is the same: How am I going to get
my sales messages in front of this group? That is something I must know about any
market I am considering.
    Then there is psychographics. Who are the members of the market? What are
they thinking? What are their backgrounds? An important and related consideration,
something I always keep in mind, is price sensitivity. Certain niches are particularly
price sensitive while others are not. For example, CPAs are price sensitive. Do some
info-marketers succeed in getting them to buy high-priced programs and products
at $1,500 or even $5,000? Yes. But overall, CPAs are more price sensitive than, say,
insurance salespeople. The point here is to know your group.
    Here are a few more market considerations. Competition: Are there other info-
marketers already in the market? Are they growing their businesses? Are there
regulatory requirements? Whenever you consider selling into a niche, you need to
know if there are federal or state regulations that dictate what you can and cannot say.
Are the customers in this market passionate about what they do? In some niches they
are. For example, professional speakers love what they do, and they are
passionate about spreading their messages.
Plumbers, not so much. Pest control
                                                    Smart Tip
operators, maybe. They’re passionate about
                                                    The transaction size of
improving the homes of their customers.
                                                    your customers can have
    Transaction size is another key market          a profound impact on the prices
consideration. This applies most specifically       you can charge for your info-
to professional niches. Take a restaurant, for      marketing business.
instance. The transaction size, or the average

                                                check, depends on the type of restaurant. But let’s say $30 is a particular restaurant’s
Start Your Own Information Marketing Business

                                                average check amount. If that’s the case, it’s going to take a lot of average checks for
                                                the restaurant to afford my $5,000 course. It will be a much higher hurdle to get that
                                                restaurant owner to buy my course than, say, a cosmetic surgeon whose average service
                                                is easily $10,000 or $15,000. Typically a training course can teach doctors how to take
                                                their average transaction size and boost it by $5,000 or $10,000. So, for them to invest
                                                $5,000 into a product is really quite simple and not a big hurdle at all. Transaction size
                                                is important to consider when deciding which market to approach. If you can go after
                                                businesses with larger transaction sizes, you’ll often find higher margins and better
                                                opportunities for you.
                                                    Now let’s discuss niches and subniches. When you are starting out, you should
                                                narrow your audience as much as possible. This is important for two reasons. First, your
                                                marketing message can be a lot more effective when it’s directed to a narrow audience.
                                                For example, if you want to create a business for restaurant owners, a subniche would
                                                be pizza shop owners who use their name as part of the restaurant’s name. That’s one
                                                of the things Rory Fatt discovered in his restaurant niche; a majority of his customers
                                                were pizza shops with the name of the owner in the name of the business—Benny’s
                                                Pizza or Joe’s Pizzeria are examples. Knowing that, Rory could specifically target
                                                those shop owners. Even if you have to go through a list of pizza shops (or you fill in
                                                the blank) nationwide by hand and scratch out all the ones that don’t have the owner’s
                                                name in them, it might actually be worth it to target your specific audience. That’s the
                                                type of tailoring you want to do. It will be a lot less expensive to target fewer people,
                                                and you can always expand your market later.
                                                    Let’s try another example. Let’s say we want to create an info-marketing business
                                                targeting bar owners. First we should narrow our focus—perhaps just sports bars
                                                initially. Maybe we should narrow our focus even further to sports bars in Ohio. Why?
                                                Because if you target all bar owners, there are almost 50,000 nationwide. For sports
                                                bars, it’s about 6,000, give or take a few. In Ohio, that number goes down to 800. Now
                                                you can tailor your message to address
                                                what’s going on in sports bars in Ohio. And
                                                here’s another plus: If you’re able to narrow      Dollar
                                                your niche to a smaller area or group, it’s        Stretcher
                                                going to be a lot less expensive for you to        If you do a little hard work
                                                operate while you learn the business. It may       in advance narrowing the focus of
                                                                                                   your target market, you’ll reduce
                                                be that your skills aren’t that great when
                                                                                                   your initial marketing costs. You
                                                you’re just starting out. So, why not hone         can always expand your market
                                                your skills in a smaller niche and prove           later, when your info-marketing
                                                what you do works? Then you can roll it            business is making money.
                                                out to the entire industry.

   I sometimes get a pushback on this

                                                                                           2 / Eliminating the Fog and Clarifying Your Target
because folks get the idea that they’re going    Bright Idea
to market their idea nationwide, and that        Info-marketing is about
is great. I want you to have a worldwide         solving problems for
business. But when you’re just starting          your customer. Once you’ve cho-
                                                 sen a target market, identify
out, I recommend going to a more tailored
                                                 problems individuals in that
market. I’ve launched quite a few area-          market face and design products
exclusive coaching programs. In one of the       that provide solutions to those
launches I did for a client, we determined       problems.
the top 20 markets, set them aside, and
went for the next 20. So we were in markets 20 to 40 in terms of size. That way we
learned what we needed to learn before we went to the top 20, where mistakes would
have been more public and more expensive. Mistakes cost you more when you have a
broader market, so learn in a smaller niche. Really drill down because you can always
go back later.
   Returning to the sports bar example, after you succeed in Ohio, you can go
through your sales letter, delete Ohio, and add Michigan and then New York and
then California. Later you can target all sports bars in the country and then all bars
and then all restaurants. So, don’t worry that you’re going to limit yourself. You can
always expand your target market later.
    One of the key things in all this is that you are trying to identify a problem you
can solve. Think about having a rock in your shoe. You’re walking around with that
darn rock in your shoe, and it hurts. There is nothing you want more than to stop
what you’re doing and get that rock out of your shoe. Well, a lot of people out there
have a rock in their shoe, and they want nothing more than to get rid of that rock.
That’s what you’re looking for. What is that rock in their shoe that’s really annoying
them? Once you identify the problem, you position your products and programs as
the solution. And that is the key. It’s not about being in the advice business. It’s not
about telling people what they want. It’s about solving their problems. It can be time.
It can be money. But whatever their problem is, you position what you have to offer as
the solution to that problem. Your sales process is about reaching potential customers,
identifying their problem, letting them know you understand their problem, and
providing the solution to their problem.

This book preview is from Start Your Own Information Marketing, Second Edition by
Entrepreneur Press and Robert Skrob.

Robert Skrob, Start Your Own Information Marketing Business, Second Edition, © 2013, by
Entrepreneur Media Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduced with permission of Entrepreneur
Media, Inc.

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