The Last Protégé Of Gary Halbert Reveals Five Highly-Effective, Proven Marketing Secrets That Will Make You A Fortune If You Use Them …Or… Soon Make You Broke If You Don‟t! This is NOT a sales pitch. This free, no holds barred, information-loaded report reveals vital content you absolutely must know if you‟re an entrepreneur, marketer, or business owner… and plan to stay so in 2008, 2009, 2010… and further on… You see, the business environment is becoming increasingly more flooded and competitive every single day… and the five secrets described below are the competitive advantages you need in your marketing (secrets Gary Halbert treasured and privately taught me) to keep profiting wayyyy ahead of everyone else… while others are already drowning or else soon will be… And know this: I did not want to share all this information here for free. But Bond Halbert personally asked me to write something for you and, it would be blasphemy to withhold such „do-or-die‟ information on Gary‟s newsletter. Gary would never do that and…lucky you… I can‟t either. Not here. So here you go… From: Sam Markowitz Co-founder, Proven Marketing Pros™ Empire State Building 350 Fifth Avenue, 59th Floor New York, New York 10118 Wednesday, April 9, 2008 Dear Friend, In this report I am going to reveal to you five marketing secrets- personally given over to me by Gary Halbert- that will make you a fortune if you exploit them... and soon make you broke if you don‟t. But before I go on, let me tell you a story… Gary once told me the wisest thing he ever heard from a child was from his son, Bond. When Bond was about 9 years old, he walked up to Gary and said, “Dad, I‟m luckier than Jeff” (Bond‟s older brother). Gary looked at him curiously and asked why. Bond replied: “Because Jeff grew up with you when you were rich… but… …I get to watch you become rich.” (At that point in time, Gary lost one of the fortunes he made and, as Bond was growing up, Gary was remaking another fortune). Think about that for a moment. There is a big lesson in that statement. As a Gary Halbert newsletter subscriber, you probably already know about me as Gary‟s last protégé. I came down to him in Miami in August of 2006, and spent almost every single day with Gary (literally an average of 14 hours each day) until he passed away in April 2007. (Doing some math, I figured out I spent about 3,360 hours personally with him). Together, we worked on many different projects, and made money, in all sorts of markets. Some of the stuff we worked on was absolutely wild. It seemed if people had a product that no one could figure out how to sell, Gary would be the guy they‟d approach to figure out a way to sell it. He had what I call supreme marketing flexibility. And he had a very deep bag of tricks and tactics when it came to money- making. In the time period I spent with him, Gary published very few newsletters. But during that time, he shared advertising and marketing secrets with me he developed and never shared before. Many of these secrets I know he planned to write to you about … but unfortunately … didn‟t get the chance to. Today, April 9th, 2008, marks one year since Gary passed away. I miss him very much. And because for the last year of Gary‟s life I was privileged to be one of the few closest people to him, Gary‟s son Bond asked me to share with you some of the wisdom Gary has shared with me. So, in this letter, I decided to share five of the most important marketing secrets I learned from Gary Halbert, which I will also expound upon from my own experiences and knowledge. These five secrets, which are both marketing and advertising secrets, are vital for every entrepreneur‟s, business owner‟s, and marketer‟s success into the future. They are five areas where you can attain more leverage in your marketing and advertising than in other areas. And because of the acceleration of movement in the marketplace, and the influx of more…and savvier…competition, these five secrets are vital if you want to stay ahead of your competition. Use them and your business will flourish, don‟t and it may flounder. If you are not yet using any of these secrets at all, then you will see exponential increases in your sales and profits by implementing them. If you are already using some of these secrets, then you will see exponential increases in your sales and profits by maximizing them and exploiting them further and further. Read on closely and carefully, as there are many little golden nuggets tucked throughout this report. And after you read about these five marketing secrets, I will let you in on one more „24-hour secret‟ Gary Halbert used, and trained me to use, to achieve remarkable marketing success. Here, without further ado, are the five marketing secrets: Marketing Secret #1… Dig Up Your Prospects Core Desires…And Then… Exploit Those Desires Above Everything Else! Gary hammered this concept into my neurology over and over again with the following story… Imagine there‟s a gorgeous woman having a drink at a bar. All the guys in the room set their sights on this beauty and, each try to impress her with the intent to leave with her that night. The first guy walks up to her and makes it obvious he‟s filthy rich. He tells her about the dozens of multi-million dollar companies he owns world-wide, about his recent one-year extravagant vacation around the world, and he invites her for a ride on his new mega-yacht. But she doesn‟t seem interested, and blows him off. The second guy walks up to her and this guy is a famous celebrity. He tells her about the latest character he played in a feature movie, about nights of partying with the stars in Beverly Hills, and then invites her to go as his date to his upcoming movie premier. But again, she isn‟t interested. The third guy walks up to this girl… and… this guy is the most handsome man at the party. All the other women are staring at him, smiling at him, and wishing he‟d talk to them. But yet again, this beauty is not interested. Other „desirable‟ men take their shot, but all are turned down. Finally, this one unattractive, broke, „nobody‟ walks up to this woman and whispers something into her ear. And… to the shocking surprise of everyone at the party… the woman quickly throws on her coat, grabs her handbag, and storms out of the bar with this shmuk! What could this guy have done? What could he have told his woman? How could this be? I‟ll tell you how. It‟s because this guy had information about this woman no other guy at the party had. He knew about a secret core desire this woman had. And so he whispered in her ear: “I Got Some Blow. Wanna Party?” You see, this woman was a cocaine addict, and coke was her „hot button.‟ This guy knew it was her hot button, and he pressed it. So he won. On the other hand, the other men „assumed‟ they could win her over by being rich, or famous, or good-looking, or a host of other qualities. These things seem to only make sense, don‟t they? Well, because the other men led their pitch with their „sensible assumptions‟, they lost. The guy who knew the facts, who had the inside information, who offered to satisfy the woman‟s innermost core desire, that‟s the guy who took home the prize. So it is with advertising, marketing, and selling. I remember early-on once writing a golf ad with Gary Halbert, and after reading the first draft I‟d done, Gary told me it was very well written, but there is one change I needed to make. You see, at that point, half my draft focused on selling the prospect the benefit of longer drives, and the other half focused on selling the benefit of eliminating hooks and slices. Gary told me to cut out the copy about eliminating hooks and slices, and focus the ad solely and completely on selling the benefit of longer drives. Why did he ask me to do this? The answer is simple… once you truly get it… but all too easy to glance over if you don‟t get it. Let me explain: What golfers want most is to add yards to their drive. That desire far surpasses their desire to eliminate hooks and slices. So Gary reasoned the most powerful ad to write was one that would focus in solely on selling this one main benefit, and sell the heck out of the prospect on it. Give the prospect what they want most, and don‟t steer their minds away from it with things that are less important. Rather, keep them salivating more and more for what they want most. Let me repeat that: Keep them salivating more and more for what they want most. And then, offer it to them! And of course, make them a really incredible, irresistible offer. Let me try putting this to you another way, to ingrain this message deeper into your being… What You Tell Your Prospects Is Infinitely More Important Than How You Tell It To Them! If I had to choose between the best-written ad in the world selling golfers on eliminating their hooks and slices, versus a mediocre ad selling them on adding 50 yards to their drives, I‟d bet on the mediocre copy outperforming the stronger copy, because that‟s what they really want, and want the most. I want you to ask yourself, do you know what your prospects and customers really want most? Do your copywriters know? Does your marketing team know? Do your salespeople know? If not, then you better find out. And if you do know what your prospects and customers want most, and you are sure you do, that‟s great! Make sure to offer this to them above everything else. But never stop gathering knowledge. The more knowledge you have, the more of an advantage you have. You never know what little crown-jewel of information you can stumble upon next. Knowledge is perhaps the greatest edge you can have over persuading your prospects and customers. That said, here are a few ways to stop assuming, and start knowing: Study… very thoroughly… the advertising, the marketing strategies and tactics, and the selling points that have historically been proven to work for your market, and that work well today. The key word here is „proven.‟ And this is not an area to be lazy in… you want to dig deep in research. Collect every advertising control you can. Become a customer of all your competitors and walk through their entire marketing and sales processes. Even talk to your competition‟s customers. Ask your prospects what it is they want. Online, you can do this really easily and well with an „ask campaign.‟ Offline, you can send prospect a questionnaire. Better yet, call them on the phone and talk to them. Even better, meet them in person and talk to them. You can learn a lot about your prospects by asking them questions, but let me warn you, you can also be very misinformed. People will often give you answers to questions that are not the real answers you‟re looking for. Now, you can get around this to some degree by knowing how to ask, what to ask, and when to ask, which is really a science onto itself. But even still, you can be steered into the wrong direction and make big mistakes, and I see it happen to countless businesses large and small, over and over again. Gather knowledge through observation. You will learn far more truth from observation than you will ever learn from inquiry. You want to be a student of human behavior. Online, savvy marketers now use hosts of programs that track every step prospects make on their websites. By observing what prospects do, online marketers can learn facts about their prospects, and adapt and steer their prospects in the direction they want them to go. And even though it isn‟t as easy in the real world, you should be observing your prospects and customers offline too. You should be hanging out with your prospects, eating at the restaurants they eat, shopping at the stores they shop at, engaging in the same hobbies, walking in your prospects shoes, and not just for a day as the saying goes, but all the time. Walk with them and observe them, and you will gather the inside knowledge about your prospects and customers that will make you rich over and over. Be an avid tester. Always keep testing what you‟re saying and doing in your advertising and marketing messages, and you will always be learning new things. New things that make you fortunes more money. This topic of testing is so important, I will get back to it later in this report in more detail. The lesson here is: Become more intimate with your prospects and customers, their wants and their desires. Give them more of what they want most, and it will make you rich. Marketing Secret #2… Establish An Avalanche Of Credibility And Your Prospects Will Buy From You Instead Of Turning Away From You! Credibility is huge. If you are not perceived by your prospects to be credible, then they will be skeptical, and you‟re going to be at a serious disadvantage when it comes time to make the sale. Lack of credibility is one of the top three reasons for you not making a sale. On the other hand, if people accept you to be credible, they will almost uncritically accept your message… and that means… you hold great power to persuade them to the action you want. How do you get credibility? The goal in copywriting is to get your prospect to come to a number of conclusions in his mind that… hopefully… will eventually lead to the final conclusion, “I must- and will- buy this product now.” And one of the most critical conclusions you must lead your prospect to prior to that is: “I believe this person is competent and I trust what he is saying to me is true.” Read that last sentence again because it reveals the two distinct elements of credibility: Competence and trustworthiness. You must be perceived as having both these things to attain maximum credibility. If you can get your prospect to conclude on this, the likelihood of you making a sale will exponentially increase. There are many ways to achieve credibility – too many to name here. Let‟s discuss three that have great impact on consumers and that anyone can attain. Credibility Building Tactic #1 – Establish Yourself As An Expert! One great way to establish yourself as an expert is to write a book. Savvy marketers have known the power of writing their own books for a long time. If you‟re the author of a published book in your chosen field of expertise, you automatically become the expert. After all, you did write the book on the topic. The truth is: people trust experts. They believe in them. And if you‟re the author of a book, your prospect will immediately believe you to be an expert… and therefore… trust and believe in you too. So Does This Mean You Have To Spend The Next Year Writing A Book And Getting It Published? Absolutely not. Most people hire writers to do this. They can be found easily by going to www.elance.com. For a reasonable fee, you can hire a ghost-writer to research and write you a book in as little as two months. If you want to write a book yourself, and to do so very quickly, then here‟s how: Google „How To Write A Book On Anything In 14 Days Or Less‟, by Steve Manning, and buy it. And if you choose, you can publish your book using traditional publishing houses. Otherwise, you can simply sell it yourself though the mail, online, or in print. Or you can choose not to sell it at all, but give it away for free as a bonus for buying your product. The benefits of having written a book about a desirable topic reach far and wide. Authors are often invited to talk on radio shows… asked to do interviews by newspapers and magazines… and even give lectures. All this helps you to build credibility and establish yourself as an expert. Credibility Building Tactic #2 – Get Other Experts And Credible Sources To Endorse You! There‟s no faster way (that I‟m aware of) for building credibility and establishing yourself as an expert in your market then to get other well- known experts to say great things about you… your company… and your products. There‟s a number of ways you can go about this. But probably the most obvious and straightforward way would be to send your book to these experts, explain what you‟re trying to do, and ask them for a testimonial. Offer to give them a testimonial in return. You may very well be surprised at what you can achieve by doing this. You can also send your book to specific newspapers and magazines that might have an interest in the topic you wrote about. For example, if you wrote a book about stock investments, then it might be a good idea to send your book to the Wall Street Journal for review. I know people who‟ve gotten full-page write ups about their books, for free, by doing this. And if you do get a well-known publication to write an article about you or your product, or even give you a favorable comment, it could result in an avalanche of new sales for your business… if you exploit it correctly. Credibility Building Tactic #3 – Get Customers To Give You Great Testimonials! Having a long list of raving customers talking about how your products and services have changed their lives for the better is one of the most powerful ways of building credibility. It‟s a demonstration of proof that what you‟re claiming is true. Top marketers know just how powerful a great testimonial is. For example, if you look at many of the successful promotions in the alternative health market right now, you‟ll see that many of them are almost completely testimonial based. I ran across a heart supplement promotion the other day that I would estimate consists 80% of testimonials. And I myself have recently written a promotion that is predominantly testimonial based. I‟m going to let you in on a secret here: I have on my desk in front of me valid studies that show majority opinion to be more powerful and persuasive than expert opinion. In other words, if you were to have to choose between 50 raving customer testimonials versus an expert to back you up, you would be better off choosing the 50 raving testimonials. Think about it this way. We‟re in a day and age where every product seems to have another doctor, scientist, or expert backing it up. People are turning more and more to their peers for opinions. People want to see evidence of things working for other people just like them. If you are shown 50 testimonials raving about a solution to a problem you have (especially from people that are similar to you, live near you, and you identify with) that‟s pretty darn convincing, don‟t you think? That‟s why it‟s so important for you to regularly collect testimonials from your customers or clients. When your prospect can clearly see that people just like him have experienced the benefits he wants for himself, as a result of dealing with you, it goes a long way towards influencing that prospect to buy! So How Do You Get Tons Of Great Testimonials? Just ask for them! Send out an email, or letter, to your customers and ask them… if they were happy with your product or service… for a raving testimonial. Many of my clients, because they are wise, ask me to write them what I like to call a „Testimonial-Fetching Letter.‟ Such a letter will usually contain some kind of incentive to their customers in return for a testimonial. This is often some kind of free report that holds a lot of value in the mind of the particular customer. It‟s important to note that the incentive is only a motivating reason for the customer to take action and give you a testimonial. It‟s not a bribe. It‟s just your way of saying “Thank You” for them taking time out of their day to do this for you. You‟re just showing your appreciation. It‟s also important to give your customer explicit instructions on how the testimonial should be written. One of the three main instructions should be for specificity instead of generality. Anyhow… to sum up… if you want to attain real credibility these days, you want all three of these things going for you… to position yourself as an expert, to have other experts back you up, and to have tons of testimonials having the public back you up as well. Marketing Secret #3… Delay Your Gratification And Shower Your Prospects And Customers With Enormous Value! To explain what I mean, let me tell you about an old friend of Gary‟s, Joachim De Posada. I met Joachim De Posada only after Gary passed away, and we got to talk briefly about his latest book, titled Don‟t Eat The Marshmallow Yet, which I highly recommend you read. The book is based upon a groundbreaking study by famous psychologist Walter Mischel. In the study, a group of four year olds were presented with a marshmallow. They were told if they could wait 20 minutes before eating it, they would get a second marshmallow. But if they eat it now, it would be the only marshmallow they get. Some kids were able to wait, others couldn‟t resist. Then, all the kids were followed up on many years thereafter. And here‟s the startling finding… Those kids that were able to delay their gratification and wait 20 minutes to get a second marshmallow… Were Much More Successful… Overall… In All Areas Of Life! If you pick up the book or look at the research, you‟ll be startled by the drastic differences between these two groups of kids as they grew older. The ones who could delay their gratification had better social lives, were more intellectual, better off financially, and on and on. And this is important to you because… by delaying your gratification… you could be way more successful in business and elsewhere. Here‟s what I mean: I constantly see business people jumping straight into making a monetary sale. On their first contact, they want to extract money from their prospects. And then on every other contact they have with their customer, all they want to do is extract more money and ask for more sales. Surely, this makes many people money. But there is often a far better way to make money... and more of it. And that is by first providing great value to your prospects absolutely free… without asking for money in exchange. An example: Do you know what is the biggest alternative health website on the entire internet? It‟s Mercola.com. Last I checked, they had about 1.5 million subscribers. Want to know why? For the first three years, Dr. Mercola did not sell a darn thing on his website. Instead, all he did was produce a tremendous amount of wicked good content via an e-newsletter for free. This built him a huge subscriber base… and because his content is so good… this built him tremendous trust and credibility. Then, when he started offering products, people began ordering them in droves. Remember this: One of the main reasons people do not buy from you is they don‟t trust or believe you. That‟s why the first sale you should make is not selling your product, but rather, selling yourself, your trust, credibility, and expertise. I advise you to read this paragraph again because it‟s that important. There is also an element of reciprocation with this strategy of value first, sell second. Because you are giving to people, they feel indebted to give something back to you. So when you finally do ask for a sale, they buy. Of course, you do not need to wait three years to make a sale like Dr. Mercola did. The point is, you should not just always be asking people for money. You should find ways to give your prospects and customers great value without asking for anything in exchange. Just look at the website DoubleYourDating.com by David DeAngelo. This guy makes about 20 million a year in sales teaching men how to meet and date women. He built his business from scratch in his basement to 20 million a year in just 6 years. How did he do it? Well, I had dinner with him in L.A. and he told me: By giving away the most valuable content he can create… for free. Sign up to his newsletter, and you‟ll see what I mean. I encourage you to go to Mercola.com and DoubleYourDating.com and sign up to both newsletters to see what they do, because they are two great examples of learning what giving away great value really is. Now, these are just two examples. There are many different ways to harness the power of offering valuable information for free to your prospects and customers. And, it doesn‟t just apply online. You can apply this principle to any business and via any advertising medium. For example, offline you can run lead-generating ads that let your prospects write to you, send for, or call for a valuable free report you offer. You capture names this way to build a list. And in the free report, you impress your prospect with your in-depth knowledge, understanding, and experience with the topic you are addressing, by providing killer content. Then, when you do send them a sales letter…, as part of your offer give away tons of free, and very interesting, bonus reports that your prospects would passionately want to have. This not only adds value to your offer and reduces price resistance, it also motivates the prospect to take action – i.e. buy your product – by making your offer that much more appealing. Even more… You Should Give Away Valuable Content In Your Advertising Itself! That‟s right. Don‟t just fill your ad with sales tactics and blind bullets. Give valuable information away right there in your ads! I promise you, if you add valuable information into your ads, they will be way more effective. You could find a way to do this for any product. Even for commodities like detergents. You can write an ad titled „How To Take Out Stains‟ informing prospects how to take out 12 different stains with your particular detergent. Actually, someone already wrote such an ad! Or if you‟re selling financial services, why not write an ad with a headline titled „What Everybody Ought To Know About This Stock And Bond Business.‟ Actually, someone wrote that ad too! Or if you‟re selling beer, let‟s say Guinness beer… because many people enjoy Guinness with oysters, why not write an ad titled „Guinness Guide To Oysters‟ and display different types of oysters and unique things about them? You know what… someone wrote that ad too! Think of ways to give away valuable information in your own advertising. It makes a world of a difference. And keep on giving your customers more and more value each time you communicate with them. If you send them an email, make sure there‟s some beneficial piece of information in there for them. If you send them a letter, make sure there‟s something in there for them also. And when they buy from you, make sure to include an unadvertised bonus in the package. Marketing Secret #4… Grab Your Prospects‟ Attention With This Jedi Mind Trick! Attention is one of the most valuable- and required- commodities for a marketer. If you can‟t grab attention, everything else you do doesn‟t matter because your prospects won‟t see it. But attention is becoming increasingly more and more difficult to get. We‟re being bombarded by more advertisements… through more channels… more often. It‟s getting so difficult to grab attention in the marketplace that people are resorting to every trick they can come up with. For example, last weekend I was in a bar and went to use the bathroom. I walked over to a stall and, I noticed there was an advertisement inside my stall. There it was… this guy‟s company name, contact information, and a message… in the stall… so that I can piss on it! A word of advice to whoever put that ad in the stall: Please do not resort to building your business image around it being pissed upon. Here is another example of what not to do: I came across an ad recently that said in the headline: “Want Free Food?” It got me to read the next line, which said: Go to your mother‟s house, but now that we have your attention…Blank Charity needs your input. And the ad goes on to talk about the charity. Whoever wrote that ad, listen to me: Do not try to fool your reader. Such shtick is a big, big mistake. There are many better ways of getting your prospects attention. Legitimate ways… that work really well. Let me load you up with the most powerful weapon in advertising to grab attention: Curiosity. I called it a „Jedi mind trick‟ in the subhead above because it really is the closest thing to it. Curiosity is the most powerful sales motivating element in the advertising arsenal. Claude Hopkins, in My Life In Advertising, wrote: „No other activating factor compares with curiosity.‟ Gary Halbert praised the power of curiosity, saying that it is even a more powerful copy appeal than self interest. Yes, even more powerful than self-interest. Let‟s look at how to harness the power of curiosity to grab your prospects attention. How To Use Curiosity To Get Your Sales Message Opened… The biggest initial hurdle to get over when making a sale is getting your message opened by your prospect. In the mail, Gary always preached to send letters in a plain white #10 sealed envelope (no window), using a live stamp, and… preferably… the address be either typed (not label- addressed) directly on the envelope or handwritten in a blue font. Why did he preach this? It‟s simple. A letter like this looks like it was sent by a real person – probably a friend or family member. And so, the open-rate of these envelopes is much higher than those with multi- color graphics and teaser-copy everywhere. Sure, teaser-copy builds curiosity in the reader. But the curiosity factor is poisoned by the understanding the reader has that when he opens the letter, somebody is going to try sell him something. On the other hand, a personal letter – that looks like it‟s from somebody the prospect knows – does not convey this fact. And so, it holds more value and builds more curiosity. If you‟re using teaser copy and pre-paid indicia marks on your envelopes, then I suggest you do an A/B split test between that method and Gary‟s method. You may be pleasantly surprised with the results. Here‟s a story on a related topic: I had a small business owner recently ask me how he can improve a flyer he randomly places under people‟s doors. I told him he should stop that and start sending a postcard or a letter to targeted traffic. After a lot of back and forth, this stubborn guy refused and insisted he wants to continue putting his flyer, randomly, under doors. So, leaving me no choice but to give in to what he wants to do, I said… „Okay. Look. If you‟re going to do that, then know the #1 one way to improve your response on this flyer is not by changing a word of it. It‟s not by changing the color of the flyer, the font, or the pictures on it.‟ The guy was puzzled. „What you want to do‟… I said… 'is first change the delivery method. You see, when people find a flyer under their door, they immediately think „JUNK‟, and discard it without even taking a look. In that case, what your flyer says doesn‟t even matter because it‟s not seen. You need to grab their attention and have them look at the flyer. So, what I want you to do is instead of putting the flyer directly under people‟s doors, put the flyer into an envelope instead. When people find this envelope under their door, instead of thinking „JUNK‟, they will think, „Ooooh, what is this, let me open this and take a look.‟ It will get their attention and be looked at. Then, you at least have a chance of getting a response.‟ I tell you this story to make this point: Get your prospect to actually see your sales message before worrying about how to improve the sales message itself. And use curiosity as your main weapon to accomplish this. Now, what if you‟re running space ads, newspaper ads, online ads, or any other ad where the message is not tucked in an envelope, but the prospect immediately lays his eyes on your sales message? Infuse Your Headline With Curiosity! The headline is the first thing your prospect sees in your ad, and it should immediately grab him with curiosity. Have you seen the famous ad, “Do You Make These Mistakes In English?” It was a control for almost 40 years. Why? Because the headline does an incredible job at grabbing your attention with curiosity. It almost forces you to read on to discover what these mistakes are and if you make them. The key word in this headline that creates a windfall of curiosity is… „these.‟ Here‟s a great example of curiosity in a winning headline Gary once wrote: “The Amazing Diet Secret Of A Desperate Housewife Who Was Scared Of Losing Her Husband!” This ad does a brilliant job of arousing the reader‟s curiosity. You want to read on to discover what this diet secret is and, how this story plays out about this desperate house wife who was scared of losing her husband. Let me also point out something in particular that Gary told me: A blind headline will often out-pull a headline which is not blind. What do I mean by this? See how this ad alludes to a „diet secret?‟ It doesn‟t reveal in the headline what the diet secret is. It doesn‟t say the „amazing weight loss pills‟. It keeps her diet secret blind… the secret could be anything. You have to read on to discover what it is, and it is only revealed once you‟re already hooked and reading into the sales message. Making a headline blind arouses more curiosity, and thereby increases readership. Listen: If you run classified ads, inject them with curiosity. If you do email marketing, inject your subject lines with curiosity. If you run banner ads, inject them with curiosity. No matter what you‟re doing, inject curiosity into your advertising and you‟ll get more attention… which means more readership, more conversions, and more sales. Marketing Secret #5… Test Your Way To Breakthrough Success! Testing is one of the most educational and profitable exercises you can engage in. More real and profitable information can be gathered from testing new concepts and ideas than through most other methods of research. For example, if you‟re entering a new market and you want to figure out, for certain, what the core desires and emotional triggers of your prospects are, simply test two or three versions of a sales letter that each focus on a separate theme. Whatever letter pulls the best will give you the answers you‟ve been looking for. But testing is more than just something you should do. It‟s something you MUST do if you want to continue to profit in the game of marketing. The competition out there today is fierce. Almost every market is swamped with other companies all competing for the same names, traffic, or advertising space. And if you‟re not actively optimizing and improving your response rates and marketing efforts, your competition will pass you by. Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent each year by top marketing companies who consistently look for new ways to beat their controls and optimize their businesses. And in this day and age, with the internet allowing us all to test things in as little as a couple hours, there‟s absolutely no excuse for you not testing, and testing, and testing. But What Exactly Do You Test? The answer is simple: you test EVERYTHING! Everything about your sales message is a contributing factor in the overall conversion rate. This includes the envelope you mail your piece in, the stamp you use, the Google adwords you use, the email subject line, the headline, opening paragraphs, body copy, offer, post scripts… and every imaginable component in between. Volumes of information could be written on the topic of testing. However, for the purpose of this article, we‟re only going to focus on the three areas that have the most impact on sales letter conversion rates. These are the headline, the first three of four opening paragraphs, and the offer. Minor changes to any of these three areas could result in major shifts in conversion rates. How To Test Headlines… Of the three, headline changes can have the most impact on response. You must understand, most (as much as 80%) of the people who see your sales letter never read past the headline. So it doesn‟t matter how wonderful your sales letter is. If the headline doesn‟t do its job correctly, nobody will see the rest of your ad. Obviously, the more people you attract with your headline, the better. And in order to attract as many people as possible, you must discover what the biggest core desire is within your market. So, the best headline tests to do are those based around different possible core desires – the motivating reasons why people would be interested in the product you‟re trying to sell. Here‟s what I mean: if you‟re selling a product to people who want to work at home, then here‟s three possible appeals for you to create a headline for, and test… Become your own boss! Earn more money, quicker, for doing less work! Make money from your home! Testing three different headlines around these concepts will tell you which one is more appealing to your market. Once you have all the core concepts tested and you‟ve discovered which one works best, you go to work on presenting your new headline in more persuasive ways. There are many types of „headline formats‟ you can test. For example, the “If/Then” headline can be very powerful... “If You‟ve Got Just 30-Minutes Per Day, Then Here‟s How To Earn $5,000 A Month From Your Home!” There‟s “The Amazing Secret Of A…” headline… “The Amazing Money-Making Secret Of A Desperate Waitress Who Quit Her Job, Became Her Own Boss, And Now Earns $7,500 A Month From Her Home!” And there‟s the classic “How To” headline… “How To Quit Your Job, Start Your Own Home-Based Business, And Earn $7,500 Within The First 60-Days – GUARANTEED!” Test as many different headlines as you can. In fact, never stop testing different headlines. Think of it this way: a 10% increase in response could result in hundreds, thousands, even tens of thousands of dollars… or more… in additional profits for you every month. And that‟s not even a big boost in response. Testing different headlines could result in 50%, 100%, even 200% increases in response, or more. How To Test Different Openings… Next to your headline, the first three or four opening paragraphs can also have a very big impact on your conversion rates. There are many different ways to “open” your sales letter. And one of the best ways is by telling a story straight off the bat. People love stories… as long as they are relevant to the subject at hand. Stories captivate the imagination, draw the reader in, and keep his attention focused on the letter in order to find out what happens next. Here‟s an example from a winning heart-supplement promotion: Dear Friend, The results of his tests were terrifying. At age 66, Charles F. of North Huntington Pennsylvania had a 90% blockage in his coronary artery – the main artery supplying blood to his heart. “Surgery is out of the question,” said his doctor, “the only thing we can do is give you drugs: a coronary dilator and Coumadin, which is a blood-thinner. That‟s all medicine has to offer. You‟ll just have to take it easy Charlie and hope for the best.” But Charlie‟s condition only got worse. Before long, the angina pain in his chest became so severe he could barely walk ten feet. The outcome was bleak to say the least. Charlie would live out the rest of his life - probably a very short one – as a complete invalid! The power of this is obvious. It‟s captivating, seductive, and people just have to read on to find out how Charlie survived… if he survived at all. It‟s got too many curiosity-evoking elements – as well as the promise of solution in the headline – to just put down and forget about. The trick with story headlines is to write them in such a way that the reader can easily see himself being the main character in the story. This makes it “hit home” a lot harder. It‟s powerful stuff when done correctly. So try testing a captivating story-lead for your sales letter. Another opener you can test is the „startling fact‟ opener. Here‟s an example: Dear Friend, Did you know that there could be up to 200 times more fecal bacteria on your kitchen cutting board than on your toilet seat? In fact, your kitchen sink itself is likely harboring so much harmful bacteria that if you analyzed it with a microscope, you‟d get sick from what you see! Same applies for your kitchen counter, your refrigerator handle, and many other little-known disease-carrying kitchen appliances. Now, I am not telling you this to freak you out. On the contrary! I‟m bringing this up to you because… See how this ad begins with a startling fact? Then, the ad elaborates on the topic, and goes on to sell a housecleaning service to very wealthy and very health-conscious homes. Yet another opening you could test is the straight benefit opener. Like this one used to sell a really neat and informative book for seniors: Dear Friend, Did you know you can get tens of thousands of dollars worth of free gifts, services and discounts… just for being 50 years of age, or older? It‟s true. If you‟ve got health issues, you can now get free medical care, free eye care, free dental care, free hospital care, and free prescription drugs. If your son or daughter is going to college, you can now get free financial aid – available from the government – to help your child pay for his/her education. All you have to do to get it is ask. If you‟re a pet owner, you can get free vet care for your animal. Like to travel? You can now get free plane tickets, and often, 50% discounts off three, four, and five star hotels in almost any country in the world. And if you drive an automobile, did you know you can shave 55% off your insurance… almost overnight? See how many benefits the reader is immediately being offered? It‟s bait after bait after bait. That‟s three examples of openers for you to start with. (The above three openers were written for clients by me and my two partners). And there are hundreds of other ways you can open a letter. Keep testing openers and, increases in response and breakthrough conversion rates will come your way. Moving on… How To Test Different Offers… The way you structure your offer will have a HUGE impact on your conversion rate as well. Here are three important elements to test in your offer: Test different price-points. Consumers can be very sensitive to price. For example, price is often perceived to be an indicator of quality. Consider doubling the cost of your product and testing it against your regular price. Believe it or not, you may experience an increase in sales doing that. Also, test price points ending in the number 7, as prices ending with the number 7 often outperform prices ending in other numbers. Test different order options. For example, test multi-option offers – where you can get cheaper or more expensive versions of your product – against single option offers where you only get one option at one set price. Test different premiums. Free reports are often the best premiums to give away because they are inexpensive for you, but could be positioned to hold tremendous value. And often times, people will buy your product just to get the reports. That‟s why you should put a LOT of thought into your reports. And test different ones to see which topics of interest pull better than others. These are just three of many things you should test in your offers. Another very important thing I should mention to test is different strategies of risk reversal. Remember this: testing is the corner-stone of successful marketing. Everything we know that‟s proven to work in marketing has come from the results of testing. If you want to multiply your profits, grow your business, and create breakthroughs in response, become a prolific tester. The Final Conclusion, And The „24 Hour‟ Marketing Success Secret… Well, there you have it. Five, vital marketing and advertising secrets, that will bring you great success… if you use them and exploit them. And now, I want to share one final note. I want to tell you about Gary‟s ‟24 hour secret‟ to marketing success I referred to at the beginning of this report. Listen: Gary is widely considered to be one of the greatest copywriters and marketers to ever live. He certainly was, and that‟s why I came to Miami to work with him. But soon enough, I realized he was a lot more than a copywriter and marketer. What he really was, was… a masterful…and full-time… behavioral psychologist. Behavioral psychologist, you ask? Yes. The purpose of copywriting and marketing is to get people to perform an action, or a behavior if you will, that you want them to perform… such as buying your product. But Gary lived for a lot more than getting people to buy products. He was constantly thinking about, analyzing, and plotting how to persuade people to actions and behaviors and desired outcomes in all areas of his life. I would be there by his side when he sent an email, made a phone call, met with somebody… and then, we‟d break down and discuss the strategies, tactics, and psychological persuaders he used in his communications. He would ask me what I think he should say to so and so person to get a desired outcome. After he‟d talk to the person, we‟d then place a bet on what result would come out of that. We‟d even bet on how people will react to and respond to things immediately, within three days, three weeks, and three months. There‟s a purpose for looking at those four time periods specifically. And we wrote a number of what Gary called „Social Engineering‟ letters to handle and fix all sorts of problems in our lives, very quickly, efficiently, and effectively. It‟s amazing what we wrote letters for, and it‟s more amazing how they worked for us. The point I am making is that Gary was, in a way, a 24-hour behavioral psychologist. He lived, breathed, and was absolutely obsessed about persuasion, psychology, and human behavior. That‟s why he was as successful as he was, because this wasn‟t a job for him, but a way of life. That perhaps is the most valuable thing he ever trained into me. (Actually, like Gary, I have always been the same way naturally, but he developed this in me to a whole new level). If you too could train yourself to think like a „behavioral psychologist‟ in all areas of your life, then you will find yourself a lifetime of success in marketing. Warmly, Sam Markowitz P.S. At http://www.ProvenMarketingPros.com, I have reserved for you another report (which I‟d like to send to you today) that reveals… how to get more customers, more sales and more profits within the next 60 days, guaranteed! This report also contains 10 actual case studies, each revealing a secret (or secrets) you can apply to your advertising right now to improve your response. Further, the report reveals, how – if you qualify – you can get a $1,000 marketing consultation absolutely free. I have set aside (exclusively for Gary‟s subscribers) a limited amount of time for these free consultations. They will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. Go to http://www.ProvenMarketingPros.com to get the full details now
"The Best Of Gary Albert-- The Last "