Sunday, July 16, 2006

Some Great Info From The Focus4TheFuture Seminar in Redmond, WA

I recently had a fantastic time attending the Focus4TheFuture (http://www.focus4seminars.com) event held in Redmond, WA. 

I hadn’t heard of the seminar promoters before: Robert Puddy and Richard Taylor but they put on a great event.

Now typically these types of seminars can be hit and miss. By that I mean, some of them are merely pitch-a-thons for the presenters products with very little content.  Others only have a few good presenters.

But I’m happy to report that this event was a great one!  First of all, there were no bad presenters (although I had to leave before the final presentation).

Look at this lineup:

Keith Wellman
Dr. Mike Woo Ming
Gary Ambrose
Special Session with Keith Wellman, Mike Filsaime and Gary Ambrose
Michael Cheney and Sterling Valentine
Willie Crawford
Stu Mclaren
Mike Filsaime
Tim Knox

Plus they were a series of “hot-seats” throughout the event. If you’re not familiar with the hot-seat concept, its where an attendee volunteers to have their website and marketing reviewed by an expert panel made up of the presenters.  It’s awesome and many times I have learned more from what I heard in a hotseat than in just listening to the presenters speak.

Anyway, since this event was in my own “backyard”, I couldn’t really pass it up.  I live in Bellevue and my drive to the event was 10 minutes from my house to Redmond, which is the city right next to Bellevue.

I hope more seminar promoters consider Bellevue/Redmond/Seattle for future events.  This was the first one on internet marketing I had heard about in my area.

Now, the presenters did give pitches for their products and services BUT only after they had given a huge amount of valuable information out for FREE.

I’d have to say the best presenter for this event was Stu McLaren.  I hadn’t heard Stu speak before but he was awesome.  Mike Filsaime (http://www.chuck-daniel.com/recommends/ButterflyMarketing)  and I were sitting at the back of the room chatting quietly while Stu was presenting and we both agreed that Stu had really over-delivered on the content of his presentation and also had everyone in the audience really engaged as well.

I’ve got 16 full pages of notes and ideas from the event, way too much to share here, but I’m going to give you some of the highlights that I think you should know and could immediately help you in your business.

As I just mentioned, I thought Stu McLaren (http://www.chuck-daniel.com/recommends/AffiliateInferno) was the best presenter at this event. Stu manages the affiliate programs for Armand Morin, Alex Mandossian, Mark Victor Hanson, Ryan Deiss, Tellman Knudson, and just recently signed on to manage Dan Kennedy and Bill Glazers program.  So you might say he has a bit of experience in this area :-)

One of the demonstrations that Stu did really blew me away in terms of how I think about affiliate programs.  Of course I know everyone should have an affiliate program because it’s like having an army of people selling your products for free and you don’t have to pay them anything until they actually sell a product.  The more people that sell your products the more leverage and money you can make. But I didn’t realize just how valuable this was until Stu showed us the Affiliate Marketing Success Formula:

TAS = PP * AA * AMS

 

Total Affiliate Sales = Product Price * Active Affiliates * Average Monthly Sales

 

Let’s say you have a product that sells for $97, with 25 active affiliates and they sell 10 per month.

Active affiliates means those people who are actually DOING something to promote your products

 

In this case:

 

TAS = $97 per product * 25 active affiliates * 10 monthly sales

TAS = $24,250

 

Total affiliate sales for a year would be $24,250 * 12 months (TAS * 12) = $291,000.

 

Now let’s say you do something to increase the number of active affiliates by 5 (that’s a pretty small #):

 

TAS = $97 per product * 30 (25 +5) active affiliates * 10 monthly sales

TAS = $29,100

 

Now let’s say that you also give them some great tools and a promotion plan that increases the average monthly sales from 10 to 15.

 

TAS = $97 per product * 30 active affiliates * 15 monthly sales

TAS = $43,650

 

So now, total affiliate sales for a year would be $43,650 * 12 months (TAS * 12) = $523,800.

 

That’s an INCREASE of $523,800 – $291,000 = $232,800

And that’s still with just 5 additional affiliate partners and giving them the tools and promotion plans they need to increase their average monthly sales by 5.

 

 

And just in case that doesn’t make you sit up and take notice, let’s look at another example with a Bigger Ticket item:

 

Let’s say you have a product that sells for $397, with 25 active affiliates and they sell 10 per month.

 

TAS = $397 per product * 25 active affiliates * 10 monthly sales

TAS = $99,250

 

Total affiliate sales for a year would be $99,250 * 12 months (TAS * 12) = $1,191,000.

 

Again, let’s say you do something to increase the number of active affiliates by 5.

And you also give them some great tools and a promotion plan that increases the average monthly sales from 10 to 15.

 

TAS = $397 per product * 30 active affiliates * 15 monthly sales

TAS = $178,650

 

So now, total affiliate sales for a year would be $178,650 * 12 months (TAS * 12) = $2,143,800.

 

That’s an INCREASE of $2,143,800 – $1,191,000 = $952,800. Almost 1M!!!

And that’s still with just 5 additional affiliate partners and giving them the tools and promotion plans they need to increase their average monthly sales by 5.

I don’t know about you but I get REAL excited by those numbers :-)  What can you do to make sure you are maximizing the profits in your own affiliate program.  If you don’t have an affiliate program yet, what are you waiting for?

Ok, next topic…

One of the common themes in the presentations done by Keith Wellman, Gary Ambrose and Sterling Valentine was that you need to create your own products that you can brand to your name.  And this doesn’t mean buying private label rights products and branding them as your own.  There is nothing wrong with that but they really stressed creating your own products instead.

All three of the above people said the absolutely easiest way to create a product is by interviewing experts and recording the interviews.

Keith’s first product (http://www.chuck-daniel.com/recommends/ViralFX) was a series of interviews with other marketers about Viral Marketing.  Gary Ambrose does a lot of teleseminars with other marketers and records them and uses them for marketing affiliate products or lets other people include them in their packages.  Sterling Valentine traveled across the US, interviewing top marketers on the power of joint ventures to create JV Formula (http://www.chuck-daniel.com/recommends/JVFormula).

And you don’t need much to do this.  First, you must be willing to ask other people to be interviewed.  This may seem intimidating, but if you have a good topic and a good idea, many people will say yes if you ask them. 

Remember, interviews give the experts more exposure and more branding so they are usually happy to participate. 

One suggestion, though.  Try to get to know the person you want to interview first.  Learn about them and their products.  And if possible meet them (seminars are a great place to do that!).  It’s much easier to approach people about working with you if you get a chance to know them first and let them know you.

Plus, I have to say that most of the people I’ve met in this industry are really generous when it comes to helping others, especially new people joining the field. 

But you do need to be respectful of their time as they are usually quite busy.  This means that you might have to jump through hoops to schedule the interview.  But don’t give up, persist and make it happen.

Also, you can buy a Phone Recording Controller from Radio Shack for around $25.00.  This device plugs into the handset of your phone and also into the line in port of your computer.  If you have software that can record off of the line in you can easily make a recording of any call you do.

The model I have is the Wireless Model (for handsets without a cord).  Its Radio Shack Catalog #17–855.  I usually use Sony Sound Forge to do the recording but there are lots of choices out there if you search.

Another option is to use a bridge line through a teleconference service company.  If you do a lot of calls you can pay monthly or just book the line for the call.  Make sure you find a company that can do a recording of your call for you.  The nice thing about this is that you don’t have to worry about recording after you turn recording of the call on and you can focus on the interview instead. 

That’s really it.

Then once you have all the interviews you just need to figure out how to bundle them, your bonuses, creating the web page, etc…

And this works for both Small and Big Ticket items. 

Keith’s first product was given away for free but he had a built in up-sell or one time offer to get the deluxe version of the system (which was really the complete audios and transcripts and some other bonuses for around $40.00). And the beauty of it was that Keith didn’t have to do anything extra.  He simply took part of the information he already had for the interviews and provided it for free.  If people wanted everything, they had to upgrade.

In Sterling Valentine’s case, he create a huge information product for JV Formula. Approximately 11 DVDs and 12 Audio CDs and transcripts for everything.  All told he interviewed 52 great online JV marketers.  The price tag: $997.00.  Can you say Big Ticket?

And both Keith and Sterling used exactly the same method to create their products. Ok, Keith’s product was only audio and Sterling had both video and audio.  But the point is, they created the products exactly the same way – by interviewing experts and recording the conversations.

Ok, that’s all I’ve got time for this week.

Best In Big Ticket Success,

-Chuck