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Archive | March, 2019

Nothing Sells Like Scarcity (and Taboo)

True story: A student attends a strict private school that decides to ban a multitude of books. These books are classics such as The Canterbury Tales, Paradise Lost, Animal Farm, The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy and many, many others.

Nothing Sells Like Scarcity (and Taboo)

The student – appalled by the administration’s actions – uses her own collection of books to start her own lending library out of an empty school locker. She keeps an inventory log and gives students due dates. Before she started the locker library, she says, “Almost no kid at school but myself took an active interest in reading!

“Now not only are all the kids reading the banned books, they go out of their way to read anything they can get their hands on” she says. She and the other students are risking getting into trouble to read books, all because the school banned them.

The first marketing lesson here is loud and clear – the scarcer something is, the more people are interested in it and the higher price people are willing to pay. In this case the price paid is having to sneak around and risk getting into trouble, possibly even getting detention or being expelled from school.

The second marketing less is that taboo sells. How many times have you heard about a film only because some group was boycotting it? And what almost always happens? The more the film is protested by some people, the more others want to see it. Heck, if you have a movie that’s failing, get a group to denounce it and your ticket sales will almost certainly increase in direct proportion to the publicity your film’s adversaries are garnering.

And while you might not be able to incorporate the second lesson into your marketing, you can certainly use the first. Decide to sell your products for a limited time or to a limited number of people. When you hit the limit, pull it immediately. Do this each time and your customers will become trained to purchase your products the moment they become available or risk losing out.

Do you have a product that’s not selling well? Announce it will be disappearing forever in 7 days and see what happens. This psychology doesn’t just work on kids, it works on everyone.

One has to wonder if the administrators of that school were shortsighted for banning books, or geniuses for finding a way to get kids to read. It’s certainly a lesson other schools could use – perhaps giving a list of books to students that they “shouldn’t” read, placing those books in a special locked section of the library, and then having the librarian lend the books only on the condition that they tell no one. What a brilliant way to get kids reading. 🙂

How to Find Your Next Hot-Selling Product

Odds are you’ve been a hair’s breath away from a $10,000 product idea sometime in the last 24 hours – you just didn’t recognize it. That’s because great product ideas are all around you, but if you don’t keep your eyes and ears open for them they’ll pass you right by and get found by somebody else.

How to Find Your Next Hot-Selling Product

For example, you’re online reading about a famous athlete from the past, and there’s a sentence in there about how this athlete swore by using a special herb or a particular training technique. Most people would just breeze right by that sentence, but you’re on the lookout for new product ideas.

You do some research and find out that particular herb or technique does indeed give tremendous benefits to athletes and maybe even to people wanting to lose weight. Best of all, it’s not widely known. So you do further research and make a report on it. Then you write a sales letter with all the stories you found and the benefits of this practically “secret” herb or technique, and now you’ve got a product.

Better still, you back end your customer with related products, or even sell them the herb or the technique on video. And all because of one sentence you read in a biography.

Let’s give another example of finding ideas: You’re on a forum and you see a question you haven’t encountered before. You do a little research and realize this is a problem a lot of people are having, so you do further research and find a solution. Bingo! Another product.

One such bloke read comments from expensive sports car owners lamenting that their car emblems get stolen and they’re several hundred dollars to replace. He asked if they’d be open to a less expensive alternative and the forum members asked how to order. That was a pretty clear sign, so he did some research, found the exact same car emblems for far less money and had himself a new business. In this case he didn’t even need to create the product, he only needed to find it and make it available to his customers.

Let’s say you’re having coffee at the local coffee house, or a beer at the local pub. You start chatting with the guy next to you, and you find out he’s an expert in something or other. So you begin to quiz him on his best knowledge and you find this guy is a treasure trove. You do some quick research online and find this is a lucrative niche, so you partner with this person and create a product.

And it doesn’t have to be someone you meet by chance– it could be a book author, a blogger, someone in your local paper, etc. Contact them and see if they’re open to working with you to earn additional income.

Now you’re really into finding great ideas for new products, so you decide to get a little crazy. You place an ad in Craigslist looking for experts and offering to make them authors. Think you’ll get responses? Likely so, and even if you don’t find someone who fits, it didn’t cost you a dime.

You go to your mailbox and you find one of those packets of various local advertisers. You open it up and find the following advertisers, which gives you these product ideas:

Liquor store – book on how to make your own liquors

Satellite television – this is a good CPA niche, but you could also make a product on how to watch all your favorite TV without buying cable or satellite

Cafe – an info product on how to do marketing for cafes and small restaurants

Auto mechanic shop – either products on how auto shops can do marketing, or on how consumers can get cars for cheap and also save money on maintenance.

Home security system – how to keep your family safe from harm

Landscape maintenance – how to landscape for minimal upkeep by using native plants, installing automated irrigation, etc.

Carpet cleaners – Joe Polish is a marketer who caters to this niche, teaching carpet cleaners how to clean up financially. And he makes a gob of money teaching in this niche. Makes you think, doesn’t it? There are a ton of professions out there that desperately need marketing help.

Address labels – okay, this one has me stumped. While first class mail is at an all time low – who needs address labels? I’ll tell you a secret: The sellers of address labels don’t make anything selling the labels. They make their money by enclosing offers from all kinds of different businesses when they send out those labels. Sort of like doing multiple solo mailings at one time. Which is a great idea for a local service you can offer to businesses.

Dentist – info products that teach dental practices how to market, as well as products that teach how to get expensive dental services such as implants for a fraction of the cost.

Window cleaner – maybe a product on how to get new windows for cheap, or how to install them yourself? How about teaching people who to open their own window cleaning business?

Chiropractic – once again, how chiropractors can market as well as additional products and services they can sell to increase their profits

Golf course – anything that takes strokes off.

You get the idea – there are product ideas EVERY where, you just have to be open and attentive to find them.

What’s the Secret in ‘Think & Grow Rich?’

If you’ve ever read Napoleon Hill’s “Think and Grow Rich,” you know that he repeatedly alludes to “the secret” without ever stating exactly what the secret is.

Think and Grow Rich

A quick aside here – I wonder if his book would still be popular to this day if he had simply STATED the secret, rather than leaving it a bit of a mystery? I don’t think so.

Some have said the secret is to, “Conceive it, believe it and then achieve it.” That is, you need to decide what you want, believe with all your heart that you can and WILL achieve it, and then take the action necessary to make it happen.

Others have said the secret lies in Chapter 2, where even Napoleon’s own son said he was able to identify the secret. That chapter is about “Desire: The Starting Point Of All Achievement.”

Chapter 2 reads, “The method by which desire for riches can be transmuted into its financial equivalent consists of six definite, practical steps…”

“First. Be definite as to the amount.” Desiring a lot of money or to be rich won’t work. Making a goal of $5,000 a month in income will.

“Second. Determine exactly what you intend to give in return for the money you desire.” You don’t get something for nothing – if you did, you could simply make a wish and your desire would appear. You’ll need to exchange your efforts for the money you desire, so what is it you can do? How can you give tremendous value to others?

“Third. Establish a definite date when you intend to possess the money you desire.” Never underestimate the power of a deadline, or the need to be accountable to someone. Tell the person you least want to disappoint of your deadline, and be sure they hold you to it.

“Fourth. Create a definite plan for carrying out your desire, and begin at once, whether you are ready or not, to put this plan into action.” Decide what you’re going to do, and then just do it. Don’t wait – procrastination leads to excuses which leads to more procrastination. Begin immediately.

“Fifth. Write out a clear, concise statement of the amount of money you intend to acquire, name the time limit for its acquisition, state what you intend to give in return for the money, and describe clearly the plan through which you intend to accumulate it.” You’ve heard this before – Write it down. Make it concrete. Make it REAL.

“Sixth. Read your written statement aloud, twice daily, once just before retiring at night, and once after arising in the morning. AS YOU READ – SEE AND FEEL AND BELIEVE YOURSELF ALREADY IN POSSESSION OF THE MONEY.” Twice a day? I would suggest several times a day. Keep your goal right in front of you so that it’s on your mind always, like a mantra. It should be the last thing you think about as you fall asleep, the first thing you think of upon waking, and your predominant thought throughout the day. As you think about it, BELIEVE it is already done – you are simply going through the formalities.

You’ll notice that these 6 steps assume one thing – that you will take ACTION and do whatever it is you need to do to make it happen.

Six steps, plus action.

If we were to boil this down to its essence, what would it be?

Conceive it
Believe it
Achieve it

And there you have it – Napoleon Hill’s secret to Thinking and Growing Rich.

Famous sales person Ben Gay tells the story of being on an ocean going fishing boat with a very successful friend. His friend hooked a whopper of a fish on his line. The crew went crazy with someone shouting out “slow down, speed up, hard to port, etc.” Crew members were running around doing whatever they do and the entire boat had a feeling of total chaos while his friend was working on landing this fish.

But his friend was as calm as could be. When Ben asked his friend how he could stay so calm amid all this frenzy, his friend replied, “While the fish and the crew don’t know the outcome of this struggle, I do.”

His friend had already conceived and believed he would catch a giant fish. All that was left was to calmly and serenely land him.

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