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As I’ve been learning a new skill to add to my online marketing tool box, I’ve had a bit of enlightenment bop me on the head… HARD. It’s the biggest secret for internet marketing and affiliate marketing success there is. In fact, it is SUCH a secret that this piece of marketing knowledge resides deep in the area of our brains that we reserve for common sense. You know, those things we KNOW but we very rarely do? haha! There IS a secret to making more sales online… Do YOU know what it is?
When you are involved with internet marketing… especially affiliate marketing… we are focused on – SELLING. (Note: When I say “we”, I am including myself in this grouping because I am so guilty of it too from time to time.) Did you know that by trying to sell more, you actually sell less?
Sadly, and especially when you are new to online marketing, there is this fear that seems to over-ride ‘the secret’ to making more online sales. We have this fear that a reader won’t know to click thru to the product page. We have this fear that they won’t know to BUY the product. Worse yet, what if they read OUR info and then go click an affiliate link that belongs to someone ELSE? Yikes!
There simply is this over-whelming fear that if we don’t ‘push’ a reader to the product page that they won’t go…and they won’t buy…and we’ll end up asking customers, “Do you want fries with that” at some dead-end job..and we won’t be able to feed the dog…and we’ll be stuck eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches forever (IF we can afford the jelly, too) ….ALL because we couldn’t get a reader to click thru and BUY something.
C’mon, you know what I mean. There is this deep gut fear and inner voice that screams, “You HAVE to make this work!” And boy oh boy, does that ever show in our online marketing efforts!
It’s time to quiet the inner voice and lose the fear. It’s time to do the one thing that kills potential sales.
It’s time to…
Yes, you heard me. STOP SELLING. Now, notice that I didn’t say, “Stop MARKETING”, I said to stop SELLING.
Let’s pretend we don’t know ANYTHING about internet marketing or affiliate marketing for a few minutes, ok?
You are just Joe Google-User (Or Jane Google-User) and you want to learn about ways to lose weight. You type ‘lose weight” or something related into Google and start looking at information.
Don’t you just HATE it when you click a search return and get a sales page?
Don’t you just HATE it when the doorbell rings and there’s a salesperson on the other side of the door? Did you ASK to be sold to?
No. And the over-whelming majority of people online are not searching to be sold to, either.
90% Or 10% ?
Somewhere I read that only about 10% of those that search online are actually in some sort of buying phase when they are searching online (MAYBE 5% of those searchers are really READY to BUY). The other 90% are looking for information.
While I don’t know how accurate that is, it sounds about right to me. When I think about my own searching habits, I know that for every 100 or so searches on differing topics that I do, I am only ‘open’ to buying for about 5-10 of them. Not saying I WILL buy, but I MIGHT buy. Those other 90-95 times, I really HATE running into sales pages.
My thought process is something like, “Stop selling to me and give me information. I am smart enough to decide what I want and need”.
After gathering info, do you know what pushes someone like me from an “info gatherer” into a buyer (ie, what makes me “smart enough” to know what I want and/or need)?
Rarely does an obvious sales pitch get me to buy…. I don’t care HOW pretty the graphics are, either. haha!
We humans are interesting creatures. Some sales person could come to my front door with the greatest cleaner EVER…and I won’t hear a word they say because he/she is interrupting my day and I am pre-programed to say No to a salesperson. However, if I keep hearing from friends, or other parents at my kids sporting events, or in other similar situations that XYZ cleaner is the BEST cleaner EVER, I will drive way across town to hunt that salesperson down. How about you?
If your web page is just an obviously fancy sales pitch, you are only really talking to 5% – MAYBE 10% – of your readers. Guess what?
You just lost the other 90%.
However, if you ‘talk’ to the 90% you will most likely have the attention of 100%. Those that are ready to buy will click thru with more ease, but that other 90% will probably listen to your information because they WANT information…. and they want recommendations…and social proof…and reviews.
Sell Less & Sell MORE
When it comes to the copy/content on your web page, you make more sales by selling less. Instead, take a moment and “be” the person who is searching Google for your keywords. If they search for “lose weight”, did they just have a baby and want to lose weight? Perhaps they are getting married? Maybe they are getting ready to go on vacation where a bikini is worn? It’s possible they are newly divorced and re-entering the singles scene or maybe its for health reasons…. There are MANY reasons people would want to lose weight and you can’t sell to all of them at the same time.
However, you CAN talk to each of them separately and specifically…and be highly relevant to exactly what they are looking for. Relate to their problem and offer them solutions that have worked for others that have had the same problem.
Then, trust that your readers are smart enough to know what they want and/or need. You know how to market… you’ve been a consumer all your life. What makes YOU buy?
In short, be the web page that YOU would like to find.
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Potpiegirl you are so right and thanks for some great info. Think a light bulb just flashed in my head as why I’m having a difficult time getting sales, because I’m to busy trying to sell instead of given them the information that they are looking for. Thanks
Terry – You’re welcome! There is a balance to writing content for affiliate marketing. Even tho our content is a “pre sell”, we don’t need to SELL. Let the vendors sales page do that.
Yes, we need to give them the info they are looking for, but in a way, we need to give them just enough info to breed faith in the BIG answer (ie, your affiliate offering). Give too much, and they got everything they need.
I know from my own behavior that if I read some great info online, I want to know more.
For example, say I am looking online for a way to fix my dishwasher. Naturally, I have no intention of buying this info. It’s the internet – info is FREE, right? =)
So, I come across an article that is about Home Dishwasher Repair Tips & Tricks. I click thru to read it because that IS what I am looking for.
The article has the author talking about the EXACT problem I am having and offers a neat way to try and fix it. I’m impressed. The author then says that they found that tip and many more at xyz.com.
Guess what I do? You bet! I click thru to read MORE tips and tricks. If the sales page does its job, by the time I get to the order button (or sooner), I HAVE to have that Dishwasher Repair ebook.
It is the answer to my problem.
Because the author/affiliate talked to me (ie, the 90%), I bought something…and the affiliate made a commission without ever SELLING a thing.
Thank you for reading!
You could not be more right on! I just experienced this myself. I was looking for some information on how to do something on the warrior forum.
While I was looking I found something else, that I didn’t really need, but because so many people had such amazing things to say about it I bought it.
They were real people giving real information about their experiences and that totally sold me on something I didn’t even know I wanted or needed. lol
Later I was telling someone about it and after I got done she was like, well after such a rave review I have to go get that.
I was like, DOH, I wasn’t trying to get her to go buy it, I was just so excited by how it had helped me.
Then the light bulb went off and I realized how I should be writing my sales pages and blog posts lol.
Internet Marketing Strategy for Momss last blog post..Internet Marketing Rant
Hi Jennifer, Excellent points. It’s really important to try to see things from your reader’s point of view.
In affiliate marketing, I’ve found that what works best for me are case studies which describe in precise detail how a product has worked for me. They take a lot more work, but I’ve published case studies that have produced very useful revenue for years.
Allan Gardynes last blog post..12 things I’ve learned in 12 years online
I keep coming back to this post because I say this post probably is the most important and most overlooked aspect of what article marketing is supposed to be trying to achieve.
Each time I come back to this post my next article series is better because I’m reminded to make it a conversation and not a pitch. I throw a lot of pitches when I lose my bearings…