Okay so you’re all excited and decided to take the plunge into entrepreneurship and have just finished setting up your blog as that is going to be your home base for your business. Congratulations on joining the club. I applaud you.
Now I know if you Google “How to Make Money Blogging” you’ll get a bunch of different findings with answers that are all over the place, causing more confusion. You see my friend it’s all about selling.
I am going to do my best to explain this to you in detail, but I love selling so much and writing this post is really getting the juices flowing so it may be a long one, but highly informative, so follow along. You won’t be discouraged.
What Are You Going to Sell on Your Blog
This question you need to give some thought to and really think about, because it can make or break whether your online business succeeds or fails.
Is it going to be:
- Services – consulting, coaching, masterminds, courses, membership sites, freelance writing,
- Products – physical or digital
- Affiliate products and programs
What are your price points?
Do you have competitors selling the same products?
What are your competitors good at?
Does your product fill the exact same need as your competitors?
What is The Niche You Are Going to Sell to
What do you mean by niche?
Per dictionary.com a niche is a distinct segment of the market.
Offline I sell to doctors in eye care – optometrists and ophthalmologists. Eye care is a distinct segment of the medical market, where it is all about the eye from primary care (optometry) to surgical care and treatment of disease (ophthalmology).
Are you following me here? Sweet. Let’s keep the train moving.
Chances are you’re going to sell to the Make Money Online niche.
Which is great. You know why? There are a ton of businesses in that space, which indicates that there is a market out there.
Now let me say this. When there are a lot of businesses in one niche you are often told don’t go into that niche, it’s too competitive. Find a niche that is not as competitive. Especially if you’re a newbie to all of this.
I call bull crap on that. You have to find a way to stand out from the crowd, but you can make it if you want to. If you have a little bit of tenacity and persistence you can make anything happen!
Who is Your Ideal Customer
Raise your hand and tell me if you have read this somewhere before. I know I have more than once on a number of different blogs.
Picture what you’re ideal customer looks like.
What hair color do they have?
How old are they?
How much money do they make?
What do they do?
Give this person a name.
Well that’s great, but how did you arrive at that picture? Did you do some research?
You don’t know, what you don’t know.
By employing this method you’re throwing crap against the wall to see what sticks. Unless you dig a little deeper, which we are about to go into.
You’re better off relying on some statistical data to determine who your ideal customer is, which is pretty easy to find.
Below are statistics from a survey of 549 company founders across a variety of industries (Yes the author of this post did the whole picture thing in their head as well, which turns out they were dead wrong on some parts of that picture.)
12 Facts about Entrepreneurs
- The average and median age of company founders when they started their current companies was 40.
- 1% of respondents themselves have earned a bachelor’s degree, and 47% had more advanced degrees.
- Less than 1% came from extremely rich or extremely poor backgrounds.
- 2% of founders had a sibling that previously started a business.
- 9% of respondents indicated they were married when they launched their first business. An additional 5.2% were divorced, separated, or widowed.
- 7% of respondents indicated they had at least 1 child when they launched their first business, and 43.5% had two or more children.
- The majority of the entrepreneurs in the sample were serial entrepreneurs. The average number of businesses launched by respondents was approximately 2.3.
- 8% indicated desire to build wealth as an important motivation in becoming an entrepreneur.
- Only 4.5% said the inability to find traditional employment was an important factor in starting a business.
- Entrepreneurs are usually better educated than their parents.
- Entrepreneurship doesn’t always run in the family. More than half (51.9%) of respondents were the first in their families to launch a business.
- The majority of respondents (75.4%) had worked as employees at other companies for more than 6 years before launching their own companies.
So, does this give you an idea of who you’re ideal customer may be? I think so.
Build your online business using these statistics as a guide to help you determine who your ideal customer is and then try to find out what problems they are having so you can offer products and services to solve those problems.
Build a Relationship with Your Ideal Customer
Do you want to know a secret? Okay, but you cannot tell anyone.
Building relationships is the secret to selling and the sky is the limit once you learn that.
That is it in a nutshell my friend. If learn how to build relationships with your prospects, there is nothing that you can’t sell and no limit to the potential financial benefits that can come your way as a result.
How do you do it?
Simple. Make friends with people without expecting anything in return. Don’t make friends with people with a hidden agenda of making a sale right off the bat or in the near future.
You don’t ask someone to marry you on the first date
Building relationships takes a lot of time and effort. Also, they are not meant to be rushed either. Let them take their time, just like you would if you started dating someone new.
Does this make sense?
How do you build relationships online?
Below is the best way in my opinion. I suggest you start with this…
- Leave thoughtful comments that add to the conversation on fellow blogger’s blogs.
An example of this would be “I can relate to you in that I also work a full-time job while blogging and commend you for your work ethic”. Continue to expound on other parts of the post.
Don’t do this. Do not simply write “Great post”
By doing this you come off as insincere and only care about the potential backlink. I have to tell you that blogger’s are way too smart to fall for this and know what you’re up to.
So, don’t do it!
Whether this is your first time here or not on my blog, I love to use stories to illustrate my points. So here is one about the power of relationships.
A few months ago in the offline world I accepted an opportunity to help launch a new product in the eye care segment. This is a unique product that helps eye doctors treat diseases of their patient’s eyelids and eyelashes.
As with anything you really don’t know how good the product is or how well it will be received in the marketplace. You have to start selling it and see what the doctor’s reaction is and make a judgement from there. The great thing about this product is it is easy for the patient to use and only costs the eye doctor 20 bucks.
Compared to the expensive equipment I sold in the past that costs thousands of dollars, selling an inexpensive product like this is like shooting fish in a barrel.
The first office I walked into to discuss this new product was a former customer of mine who bought one of those expensive pieces of equipment I just referenced 5 years ago. To set the stage here consider the following:
I did not have an appointment with the doctor
He did not know I was coming to see him
I have not seen or spoken to him in 2 years.
After he was finished with his patient he walked out in the waiting room and said, “What are you up to. Been a long time.”
We went back into his office and started shooting the breeze. Catching up on what has been going on with him. I explained what I was doing now and we discussed the new product I was selling.
After I was done telling him the benefits of this new product. He whipped out his credit card and bought.
Talk about the power of a relationship.
See when you build relationships with people and are good to them, they will more than likely buy from you over and over again. One caveat here though that is very important to remember is the product has to solve a problem or satisfy a need for them. If it doesn’t they won’t buy from you no matter how far you go back from a relationship stand point.
Did you like this story?
Are you picking up what I am putting down?
You can do the same thing on your blog. Build a relationship with your readers and over time the same type of situation is likely to occur.
One of your readers eventually becomes a customer after they buy from you and they may buy from you over and over again provided your new products satisfy a need for them.
If you only remember 1 thing from everything we have talked about so far remember this…
IT TAKES TIME TO BUILD A RELATIONSHIP!
As a result it takes time to sell your products and/or services to your readers.
How long? You’re not going to like my answer as there is no cookie cutter answer to give you.
It can take a week, months, or years. It all depends on how complex your product is and how expensive.
Fact: The more expensive the product the longer it is going to take to sell it!
Don’t Sell The Same “Me-Too” Products
What do you mean by that?
Let’s say you want to join XYZ affiliate program. You may or may not be able to find information on how many affiliates there are for that particular program, but consider this.
There may be 10,000 affiliates already in that program you are going to sign up to join. Let that marinate for a second.
10,000. That is a lot of people. How are you going to sell said program’s products or services? It’s going to be pretty damn hard and may or may not work. Why?
Look at how many people are selling the EXACT same thing as you.
One more example where everyone and their brother can be an affiliate is for your email service provider (autoresponder). There are literally thousands upon thousands of people selling Aweber who is a popular company many bloggers use as their email service.
So what are you going to do differently to stand out from the competition and have a prayer to sell any of these me-too products?
Here’s where you need to get creative.
We’re going to use Aweber as our example.
- Personally walk them through how to use the product. Set up a time where you can do a screen share and show your customer all the bells and whistles Aweber has to offer them.
- Provide videos and/or step-by-step guides for your customer when they purchase Aweber from you on how to utilize all of the features in the software.
- Create an actual autoreponder series for them. This would be huge given the fact that when you’re a newbie marketer your head is spinning from information overload and this is a great way for you to help them.
- Offer to create their lead magnet for them if they purchase Aweber from you. We talked about using a list of tools or 1 page pdf resource guide in another post that can be used for your lead magnet instead of eBook or video series.
- Set up their opt-in box on their blog for them, so they can start building their list. You all know how important that is.
Are you following me?
Does this make sense to you?
So, don’t be surprised when you throw up your blog and start selling these me-too products and make no sales. Why?
Because that is what everyone else is doing. You need to offer something different in order to have a shot at making a $1, let alone the money you want to make.
Offline I sell a product to eye doctors that helps patients treat diseases of their eyelids and eyelashes. This product is brand new in the marketplace and it is different in many ways than the competition that is already out there. There are 5 other established competitors on the market.
How is this product different versus the competition?
My product is prescription only (competition is sold over-the-counter).
It does not cause irritation to the eye (competitor’s product irritates the eye).
Kills bacteria in 60 seconds (you have to leave the competitive product on your eye for 30 minutes before bacteria is eliminated)
This product works more effectively
How are sales of this product so far? Outstanding. They continue to grow month over month.
Why? Because it is a good alternative to the competitors on the market and flat out works.
How is what you’re going to sell different than the competition?
Does it work?
What are you doing to create buzz around what you’re offering?
That is a wrap on this blog post for this week.
Let The Conversation Begin. Ready…set…go!
What are your thoughts on what we have discussed today?
Did you find this information to be helpful to you? If so, what part?
I am anxiously awaiting your comments. So don’t be shy.