[Image credit Fran Simo - Flickr]
Strategy is the most important concept that online business owners overlook.
- They focus on their website design.
- They focus on their products and services.
- They focus on everything in the world like the color of the opt-in button or the font size of their footer.
However, they tend to forget about strategy.
KNOW WHY YOU WILL BE SUCCESSFUL.
One of the most hilarious movies “The Wedding crashers” is a great example of two friends using a well thought out strategy successfully.
If you haven’t seen the movie it’s about two college buddies who decide they can meet girls by showing up to weddings uninvited.
Their strategy works because they know how happy and joyful people are at weddings especially bridesmaids so it’s a perfect opportunity.
They show up to party and have fun with single women who are more than open to the idea of meeting someone at a wedding.
They were successful because they KNEW in advance the dynamics at play and they took action.
You must do the same with your online business here’s how:
CONVERT BROWSERS INTO READERS.
Have you noticed the tabloids while you’re waiting to checkout at the grocery store?
Do you think it’s an accident that these magazines are placed right next to the register?
If you’re not an active reader of these magazines what makes you actually pick up one and start thumbing through the pages, even if you don’t buy it?
This is the first step to converting browsers into readers.
You must catch the eye of the “browser” with a great headline that will get their attention.
Headlines that appeal to FEAR perform exceptionally well. People love to spend money but they HATE losing it. This is why financial articles with headlines seeming to scare people about losing their retirement or savings are so effective.Example: “Why the next Windows upgrade may erase your music library.”
Any headline that is breaking an interesting exclusive story will always attract browsers to read and find out more.Example: “Exclusive video: Local Band X performing live at JJ’s.”
There’s a reason why so many rappers collaborate with each other on so many songs, it works. Recently Jay-Z released his new album which involved several guest producers such as Swiss Beats, Timberland, and The Dream.When browsers see other established people together they get the impression that something important is happening. Use this to your advantage with headlines.Example: “My Q & A with Apple CEO Tim Cook.”
Boring will get you nowhere fast. The best way to get attention is to take strong stances on important topics.The result of doing this is controversy.It generates discussion as people make their points and counterpoints and ultimately it’s a good thing for your online business.Example: “The real risk of storing your data in the cloud, The Administrators.”
People love simple factoids that they can share with their co-workers while they’re having a casual conversation by the coffee machine.This is why headlines with the results of scientific studies or experiments are so popular. You can create your own studies or even write about the work of others.Example: “Study: 70% of Americans Live Paycheck to Paycheck.”
CONVERT READERS INTO SUBSCRIBERS
Now that you have converted your browsers into readers it’s time to get them to take the next step and subscribe to your content.
How are you going to get them to do that?
Understand the three main reasons why readers subscribe:
People are habitual and tend to do what takes the least amount of time and effort. Encourage your readers to see how convenient it is to get your content automatically without having to manually look for it.
People love to have what no one else has or get something before everyone else. Explain to your readers the awesome exclusives that come with a subscription like access to a secret area with videos or the ability to search archives.
Useful Free reports or Ebooks that really solve difficult problems or answer tough questions are always excellent at luring subscribers. People respond to these offers because they believe the information will help them.
Call your readers to action.
Consider this, if you build it they will come well if you ask them they will do.
This means if you never ask your readers to subscribe, they never will.
Here’s some CTA or call to action best practices:
Use Professional tools.
There are several automated subscription and lead capture tools available just make sure that you use one that is highly rated and fits your needs.Some of the most popular are: Aweber, MailChimp, and Getresponse.
Time your popups.
Definitely use popup or popunder forms to grow your email list but please time them so that you are asking a reader to subscribe. You don’t want to ask a browser to do this yet they don’t even know who you are. Time the pop up for 60 seconds or longer to be sure the individual is actually reading the article before your form appears.
Keep it simple.
The more information you ask from your subscriber the lower the chances they will give it to you. Just start with their name and email. That’s simple enough for now. You don’t need more info and asking for more scares your reader away.
CONVERT SUBSCRIBERS INTO PROSPECTS
Before you can solve anyone’s problems with your products and services you must first understand the problems that they are facing.
An easy way to do this is to simply ask your subscribers. Send them an email and ask them what issues are they trying to resolve related to your niche.
Another excellent technique is to present a hypothetical scenario.
Example: “If you could snap your fingers and appear anywhere in the world where would you travel?”
The people who respond are your prospects.
CONVERT PROSPECTS INTO CLIENTS
“If you knew better you would do better”
NOW that you KNOW more about your prospects you will DO much BETTER at converting them into paying clients.
At this point you know what they are trying to accomplish or where they want to go.
You know what articles they commented on and you’re aware of some of their social shares.
Now it’s time to make them an offer they can’t refuse.
THE LOSS LEADER
This is where you make an offer so enticing, so filled with value that you may actually lose a little money on each transaction.
Grocery and retail stores use this strategy all the time because they know once you’re in the store you’ll likely buy other items where they have a higher mark up.
The exact same principle applies with your online business. Here’s how to use a loss leader effectively:
SMALL slice, BIG pie.
If your product is a 100 page eBook why not create a 10 page mini cliff notes version and offer it to your prospects for only $2. This version will tease the reader into buying the full 100 page eBook. It will also promote other products and services that you offer.
Offer your premium product or service for use on a temporary basis for FREE. Create a private premium area on your site and allow your prospects the chance to enter for a 30 day free trial after which they will be billed monthly.
Put YOU on sale.
If you normally charge $100 per hour for consulting why not offer your services to your prospects for 90% off one time only? Instead of spending a two hour session make it 30 or 45 minutes.
The reason why LOSS LEADERS work is they are effective at getting your prospects “on the dance floor” if you will.
Even if you lose a little on each transaction loss leaders convert the wall flies standing around your site into paying clients with real potential. This is how to convert readers into subscribers, Prospects, and Clients. If you have more tips to share, I’m all ears and you can drop your expert comments below. Don’t forget to share this article on Facebook and Google plus.