April 11, 2002
Table of Contents
Quote of the Week
Staff Article -
MAXIMIZING YOUR MOST VALUABLE RESOURCE
Tip of the Week
Guest Article -
7 INTERNET MARKETING MISTAKES WHICH ARE
DESTROYING YOUR BUSINESS
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- Pablo Casals
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MAXIMIZING YOUR MOST VALUABLE
by: Cary Christian
Most of you who read this
ezine are interested in increasing your web-based business activities. Many
of you may be looking to become Internet-only businesses. It follows then
that most of you have a healthy interest in Internet marketing. While there
is nothing wrong with this, you also need to position your business to
function efficiently in an Internet world.
One of the most persistent problems facing Internet marketers is finding
enough quality time to get things done. Between setting up your website and
maintaining it, executing your marketing campaigns, and actually running
your business, there never seems to be any time left for yourself and your
family. This problem is compounded if you work a day job and try to
run your Internet business at night.
The answer to this problem is automation. You will either automate your
Internet business activities or you will never have enough time to do the
things you need to do to grow your business. We're going to take a look at
several things you should consider to make your life easier.
If you maintain a substantial email list, you should consider automating
your mail list operations in some form. There are many options available.
You can purchase mailing software that runs on your web server, mailing
software that runs on your PC, or you can farm out your mailing operations
to an Internet-based service provider. The choice you make will depend
largely on how big your mail lists are.
With a fairly large list, managing subscriptions, remove requests and
bounces can quickly become an extremely time-consuming ordeal. Server-side
mail software like Mailloop
http://www.marketingtips.com/mailloop/t.x/649034 ) will take care of these
processes for you automatically.
Server-side software like Mailloop can be quite expensive. If you do not
need that much power or do not yet have the budget for server-side software,
packages installed on your PC may be the interim answer for you. PC-based
mailing software may or may not handle ALL of your list chores,
depending on how it is set up, but it will make them easier to manage.
Two good PC-based programs you could start with are Group Mail Pro
http://www.shareasale.com/r.cfm?B=3939&U=58198&M=1465 ) and the Gammadyne mailer (
http://gammadyne.com/refer.php?ref=12345&page=mmail.htm ) The Gammadyne mailer
is often compared favorably to Mailloop even though it is less than a third
of the cost. You can find a complete comparison of the Gammadyne mailer to
most other mailers on the market on their website. The comparison contains
live links to competing software, so you can check out Gammadyne's
competitors very easily.
Farming your list maintenance and mailing chores out to an Internet-based
provider will take almost all the headaches away, but be careful that you do
not lose too much control over your lists. These services will generally
cost you $19.95 or more per month, but will handle every aspect of managing
your mail lists except deciding what to actually send to the list.
Technically, autoresponders are still in the category of email automation,
but we'll deal with them separately because they can be used to automate
other business functions.
Autoresponders can save you tons of time in lots of ways. If you receive a
lot of email related to technical support or requests for product
information, an autoresponder can be your best friend.
Use them to send a "frequently asked support questions" email to customers.
Spend a little time developing a thorough support document that covers your
most frequent support issues and have your customers send their first
support request to this autoresponder document. It could weed out many of
your more repetitious requests. Include a link within the email to reach you
directly if the autoresponder support document does not solve their problem.
Use autoresponders to provide potential customers with product information.
This becomes a really nice sales tool. Since most customers need to be
presented with your sales message seven times or more before they buy,
always provide your web site visitors with an option to request more
information from one of your autoresponders. Fill the autoresponder with as
many sales/product information messages as you believe are necessary without
going overboard. Of course each message will attempt to get the potential
customer back to your order page.
If you post to safelists or classified sites, include an autoresponder
address for additional information. You will be multiplying your marketing
efforts many times over without increasing your time commitments.
Using autoresponders can save you hundreds of hours per month and make your
marketing and support efforts more effective overall. Be creative and use
them in as many ways as you can.
See our FEATURED RESOURCE below to find out
where you can get the autoresponders you need.
USE ACCOUNTING SYSTEM INTEGRATION CAPABILITIES
Accounting systems today are much more than a system for accumulating debits
There are hundreds of accounting systems on the market. Maybe thousands if
you count the really bad ones. Most all of them will do an adequate job with
normal everyday accounting functions. They will produce financial statements
and general ledgers, track your payables and receivables, and help you
balance your checkbooks. But the really good ones will do much more.
Higher end accounting systems are designed primarily to help you organize
and formalize your business processes. Accounting is almost a by-product in
most modern systems. Outstanding tools are provided to help you manage
customer relationships, automate your shipping processes, manage and plan
your inventory operations, track and manage costs incurred on projects,
allow you to purchase and sell using EDI, and so much more.
Web-enabled software packages can be even more impressive. Purchasing
and sales activities can be carried out 24 hours a day, seven days a week
without any human intervention whatsoever.
No matter how small your business is, an appropriate accounting system
exists that will make your life easier, make your documents look more
professional, make you more efficient, and give you more free time to pursue
more interesting endeavors. Modern systems are operational tools that
just happen to handle accounting for you on the side.
If you are a small business looking for your first formal accounting system,
our sponsor for this week provides an excellent basic product with upgrades
available that allow you to expand your system as your business grows. You
can download a free trial to check it out. (See the sponsor ad, above, and
website for details).
FOCUS YOUR MARKETING EFFORTS TO SAVE TIME
Most of your marketing efforts online require some action on your part to
make it happen. You have to post manually to safelists and message boards.
You have to click, click, click your life away using surf-for-credit
programs. These forms of marketing are basically free so they are quite
popular. But there comes a point in time when you have to realize that your
time is valuable.
Pay-per-click search engines will provide you with extremely targeted
traffic with little effort on your part once you set up your listings and
Ezine ads produce excellent results and do not require much time at all to
Using marketing sources like these will allow you to set up marketing
campaigns that require little maintenance while they work for you as spend
time doing other things. And if you study and learn how to use these
marketing resources properly, you can use them fairly inexpensively.
ORGANIZING YOUR MARKETING EFFORTS
Your marketing efforts will always require some of your time no matter what
types of marketing you are using. If you are posting to safelists that allow
you to post once per week, when was the last time you posted? Do you
remember when you last updated your search engine submissions? When did you
last check your bids on the PPC engines? It can become very difficult to
keep track of it all, and disorganization leads to wasted time.
Using a tool like SiteTrack can help you make sense of it all by organizing
all your marketing efforts and maintaining important information about your
website and web marketing efforts. If you don't already have such a tool,
you can check out SiteTrack at
If you don't want to spend the small fee to acquire a tool like SiteTrack,
you should at least create a detailed marketing checklist where you keep
track of your marketing efforts and maintain reminders and to-do lists.
If you put these few tips to work in your business, you will free up your
most valuable resource for the important function of positioning your
business for growth and market penetration. Your most valuable
Copyright (c) 2002
Tip of the Week
Getting yourself organized is not only
important to save you time in managing your day-to-day activities. It can
save you money at tax time as well. It is extremely easy to lose deductions
if you are not accounting for them every day. Receipts get lost,
confirmation emails get deleted, cash expenditures are long forgotten a few
days after they are made, and so on. Don't think you are too small to
implement some form of simple accounting system or tracking software. There
many options available to small businesses and individuals that cost very
little. Get one and put it to work for you as soon as possible.
MARKETING MISTAKES WHICH ARE DESTROYING YOUR BUSINESS
By Terry Dean
Below are 7 Mistakes which you
can constantly see many Internet businesses making over and over again. Each
of these mistakes can easily cost your business thousands or tens of
thousands of dollars yearly.
As a matter of fact, I see many internet businesses out there that have next
to no chance of success because a couple of these problems are at the very
heart of their business.
If your business is built on a weak foundation, there is no way it will be
able to produce maximum income for you even if it does somehow survive.
Mistake #1: You have a short-sighted vision.
Do you have a long term plan for your business or are you just trying to
make it through the month?
I know marketers who have a 1 year plan, 5 year plan, 10 year plan, and even
a 50 year plan for their business...What does your plan consist of?
A lot of people are making fun of Amazon.com because of the fact that they
lose an average of $3.00 per book that they sell. Do you realize
though what their long term plan is?
Every single day they are using their large financial backing to take up
more and more of the book market share. They are quickly becoming the most
well known bookstore on the earth...and every other bookstore is beginning
to feel the pressure from them.
I am definitely not suggesting to you that you need to start losing money to
gain customers, because most of us small businesses just couldn't afford
that tactic. What I am suggesting to you is what you learn the lifetime
value of a customer.
It is 7 - 10 times easier to sell a product to an existing customer than it
is to sell to a new customer. How are you building the relationships with
your current customers? Are you seeking out and finding new products that
meet other needs and wants they might have? Are you treating your current
customers as your most valuable asset in your business?
Mistake #2: You aren't willing to think outside the box.
For many internet marketers, they only see two types of advertising. Number
1 for them is free advertising such as free links, free classifieds,
newsgroup participation, and more. Secondly, they see paid advertising
such as banner ads, offline advertising, and paid links.
What about finding people in your business to endorse your products or
services to their customers and splitting the profits? Jay Abraham and Mike
Enlow both list this as the most powerful marketing tool in existence...do
you even know about it?
Press releases can get traffic to your site almost overnight if you have
something that people want or need...have you worked with the media to get
some Free traffic?
Have you considered setting up your own affiliate program? This is the
quickest and easiest way to expand the sales of any successful product or
business. Let other people start selling it for you!
Mistake #3: You have fallen in love with the wrong product.
Have you fallen in love with the wrong product? It is interesting to note
that in the Direct Mail Bootcamp, where a Dozen Top Marketers gathered
together to discuss the recipe for marketing success, one of the main
reasons for failure that they all agreed upon was...falling in love with
your product or service.
I understand that your product may be your baby, but you will have to be
willing to give it up if it isn't what the market wants. Every day the world
market is changing and you have to be changing right alongside it. It may be
that demand for your product is declining...if so, are you willing to give
it up and find a product people want?
Start asking some questions of your web site visitors or ezine readers. Ask
them what it is that they want. What is it that they are looking for? You
may find out that you have been barking up the wrong tree and trying to sell
them something that they don't really want (Even if it is what they need).
You will go broke trying to sell people what they need...if it isn't what
they want! The actual statistics are that only one out of every seven
products turns out to be a winner. Go with the odds and be willing to change
if your market WANTS something different.
Mistake #4: You don't have a Unique Web Position.
What makes your site different than everyone else's? Why should they visit
you instead of somewhere else? Why should they buy from you instead of the
If you can't answer those questions in one quick sentence, then you don't
have the type of UWP you need to succeed in today's worldwide business
Spend some time and visit the competition. What is it that you do better
than them? What is it that you offer different from them? For example, in
the internet marketing sites out there, so many of them are only me-too
sites. What are you going to do to make yourself different than the rest? Is
it better prices, better services, free stuff, quicker results, etc.?
Mistake #5: You haven't researched your market enough.
Do you know what it is that your market wants? Have you ever taken the time
to go back to your customers and ask them why they bought from you in the
first place? Have you spent time in discussion groups, mailing lists, and
newsgroups to find out what problems people may be having or what they are
If you don't know why people buy from you, how can you target them correctly
or write a sales letter that will hit their hot buttons? I will give you the
answer to that one...you can't do it.
Concept is more important than ad copy. Coming up with exactly the right
concept (or angle) for your product will make OK ad copy sell like crazy. A
poor concept could never be made profitable even by the best copywriters out
Mistake #6: You aren't dealing with people as individuals.
Don't talk to everyone...deal with individuals. I believe in automating as
much of the sales process as possible, but there still comes the time that
you have to deal with people like people. We run the numbers on our sales
statistics, but people are not just numbers.
Always remember the human element. Those aren't just email addresses out
there. They are real live individuals who have wants, needs, and desires
just like you. Deal with them that way.
Be willing to help...Be willing to give away free information...Give away
free samples...Be someone that people like.
Mistake #7: You give up too soon.
This almost goes without saying, but many individuals give up too soon. I
have seen hundreds of individuals make some of the mistakes above on their
sites, lose a little money, and then give up in disgust believing that the
internet just doesn't work.
I am not just dealing with your entire business either. Sometimes
people give up on advertising too soon. They don't test it enough. Instead
of believing that a certain web site isn't a good place to advertise or that
a certain ezine doesn't bring in responses for you, did you try editing your
ad first. I have seen ads double, triple, or even have as high as 10 times
or more effectiveness on the same sites just by a couple of changes.
What do you do now that you know these 7 deadly internet sins?
Read through them...Take them to heart...Make changes in your business if
needed. Don't just walk away from this and say, "That was a pretty good
article." Use it and let these tips help you in your business.
Then, email me about it. I want to know if this article helps you or if
there is anything else I can do for you. Send an email to
Terry Dean, a 5 year veteran of Internet marketing, will Take You By The
Hand and Show You Exact Results of All the Internet Marketing Techniques he
tests and Uses Every Single Month" Click here to Find Out More:
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