Here’s Ben’s interview with webinar marketing expert Jon Schumacher, covering:
Virtual Summits are growing like crazy, and for good reason. They are one of the easiest, and most powerful, list-building tactics you can use today.
Wendy Kier is an entrepreneur and expert in virtual events, based in the UK. Her website is http://getclientsonline.co.uk/.
Our 36-minute interview is packed with information on virtual summits, including…
It generally makes a great deal of sense to capture each prospect’s contact information, because that means we own a channel that we can use to continue the conversation with them. This is usually email, but may also be social media, telephone, or even physical mail.
There are other good reasons why so many marketers try to give away free information in return for contact details (often called “lead magnets” or “ethical bribes”). In OSM, we refer to these giveaways as “pre-sell” material.
I believe that the main benefit is that the material you give out can actually do most of the tasks required to make a sale, but outside the context of selling.
Any giveaway, whether a free book, ebook, video series, webinar, or trial, can educate your prospect on what they need to know, i.e.
Think about it; your “pre-sell” can meet your prospect on their path and lead them along, gently and easily, to the point where they can be convinced and ready to buy, without their feeling sold to! That’s the power of pre-sell!
The best format for a pre-sell depends on the context. There is no one-size-fits-all.
The ideal pre-sell is probably a demo or trial, because there’s no better way to prove how something works than to let the prospect experience it for themselves.
Check out these two powerful presentations, which came from my “Breakthrough” program in March-April 2015.
This short presentation breaks down why “Pre-Sell” offers work so well.
“A to B” is a simple but powerful structure for helping you to think about the structure for your lead magnets (or “ethical bribes”).
It builds on the “Perfect Topic” headline structure, providing a series of components (“stepping stones”) to help your prospects know the value in your initial offer.
As we’ve worked through the capture and nurture phases of a campaign, it has become apparent that the “pre-sell” (a.k.a. “lead magnet” or “ethical bribe”) can deliver a LOT more than simply getting a prospect’s contact info.
This 24-minute presentation explains the realisation of the magic of the pre-sell.
In this article, I’ll write up the decision-making process that goes into an OSM Campaign Design for a real-world project.
Snoreraser is my latest campaign redesign project. It’s an existing business, set up several years ago by retired firefighter Brian McKenna in Pennsylvania, USA.
Brian is one of literally millions of people who has found it difficult to sleep because their partner snores. Over a few years, Brian tried practically every product on the market, but realised that none of them really works. (There are many reasons, but snoring waveforms are not regular enough for noise cancelling technology to work, and it’s impossible to block out the sound with earplugs because a significant amount of the noise actually resonates through the recipient’s cranium, not through the ears.)
This set Brian on a journey of exploring masking the sound of snoring. His idea was that it might be possible to play a composite sound actually composed of real snoring, and somehow neutralise the snoring in the room enough to let the other person sleep.
To cut a very long story very short, it worked! It took Brian years of experimenting, sampling many people’s snoring, and he finally arrived at three different “grades” of his product, Snoreraser, which effectively cancel out over 95% of snoring sounds. Brian says really is the only product of its kind available today (a great position to start from).
The Snoreraser products are simply MP3 files, which the non-snorer plays, usually via earbuds. The tracks can also be played through speakers. There are variants of each of the three main products, which include binaural beat technology, proven to help some people slip into a state that makes sleep easier.
I started by reviewing Brian’s existing site at snoreraser.com (Note August 17th, 2015: Now relaunched!). I won’t do a complete break-down of the existing site, as we will be replacing it entirely, however the overall summary was…
Despite the shortcomings of the current site, Brian makes decent sales, with a website conversion rate of around 3% (which is surprisingly good), and monthly sales in four figures. We are aiming to get this into five figures.
I’ll share a Short Circuit analysis of the overall marketing proposition. Basically, the Short Circuit will identify whether an offering has a good case to take to market.
So, for me, this is a clear case of five green lights — exactly what you want before diving into campaign design!
I’ll explain my reasoning for choosing each of the various techniques (channels, tactics, tools) I have selected for each of the main Campaign Phases, based on the facts discovered earlier in the Strategy process. (It is not necessary to share all the Circuit responses.)
The Campaign Phases are:
Good news! The website already has significant organic search traffic, providing over 80% of visits, 1884 visits in the past 4 weeks according to Google Analytics.
For that reason, I would start with optimising the conversions using the existing organic search traffic. After we know the new average earning per visitor (EPV) post-relaunch, that may make other channels feasible (particularly pay-per-click on AdWords or Facebook).
Right now, a massive 96.4% of all visits land on the home page!
However, there are obviously plenty of search terms people could be typing in. Here’s what Analytics tells me are our current top search terms. (Note how people are looking quite deep down the list of results in their search for a solution, because some terms are delivering good traffic despite being in the bottom half of the top ten.)
This tells me that we could use the power of multiplicity (see Convert! to learn more), and create multiple landing pages, which can be focused on these specific search terms. That could help us to rank higher (over time) for a wide range of terms, significantly boosting that organic traffic. And we have good stories to tell, such as, “Why noise-cancelling headphones don’t block snoring.”
We also have a compelling and true story to tell: “Retired Firefighter Discovered The Only Way To Block Out Snoring.” And that story will work well in video format (because it does not take too long to tell). So, combining those facts with the clear search traffic, that would also make YouTube videos a useful marketing tool, which we should implement from day one.
Specifically, I would suggest the following method:
We know that the ideal pre-sell can be a demo or trial. In the case of Snoreraser, that’s exactly what we can do. Because it’s a digital audio file, we can deliver the trial version of the product for practically no cost.
Instead of expecting the prospect to be able to select which version of the product is right for them, I propose that we may not even need a direct “Buy Now” link on our landing pages, but instead invite every visitor to download their free trial version, so they can try it out for themselves.
Now, this is adding an additional step, and an additional trade, but I believe the benefits of delaying the sale offer could significantly boost conversions. We should get a lot more people opting in for “Try It Yourself! Free Home Demo” than the ~3% who buy today.
Briefly, we’ll display that call to action prominently, possibly using a 2-step opt-in mechanism (which may increase opt-in rates).
Upon opting in, the prospect will be added to an email list. The first email will deliver their trial product.
Nurturing is the phase of the sales process in which you walk the prospect through the logical steps from wherever they started to the point you want them to get to (i.e. being convinced that they need to get your offer now).
It may include some or all of the following steps:
If you can use a pre-sell applying the “A to B” method, you can find that the nurture phase is easier, because you are educating your prospect without overtly selling to them (and thus activating their anti-sales defences).
Really, there’s no better way to accelerate the Nurture phase than with an real live experience. However, even if you can offer a taster or trial, you should still make sure you cover all the relevant steps. You can’t always rely on a prospect to convince themselves.
So, for Snoreraser, we’ll consider all the possible reasons why a prospect might not proceed to buy straight away, and follow up with a comprehensive series of timed emails that address those issues:
You have to invite the prospect to buy! If you don’t ask, they can’t say yes. So every Campaign Design should plan for bold, confident calls to action.
So our second email in the FUS (follow-up sequence) will ask for the sale — IF they tried the demo and it worked for them. (It’s core to the brand that we only want to take people’s money when we help them. We don’t want any customers who are less than 100% satisfied.)
As the email FUS above shows, we’ll track buyers and non-buyers (using an integrated marketing automation system), so that we can send further emails only to people who don’t buy, if needed.
It is always worth considering what support people may need immediately after buying. Plus, it’s always a good idea to drop in on customers after a few weeks to gather testimonials (text or video) and maybe to invite them to spread the word (e.g. through social media).
If this Campaign Design seems straightforward to you, that’s great.
Marketing, when it’s done well, should seem obvious and simple. Our goal should not be to trick or to manipulate, but to help a prospect understand whether our offer is perfect for them.
That’s why I love to work with products like Snoreraser Pro, which offer the world something unique that the vendor believes in one hundred percent.
It’s also why Open Source Marketing is built on the comprehensive Circuit process, so that we only move into Campaign Design once we know we have an offering that’s ready to take to market.
Because when you have something like Snoreraser Pro, when you’re helping people solve a real need, marketing does become easy, and rewarding. If marketing is difficult or confusing, that’s a sign you need to go back to basics.
If you’d like even more insight, please feel free to check out my online Campaign Design document, which includes a draft script for the intro video.