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Saturday, March 31, 2007

The Biggest Secret In Internet Marketing

In the Internet marketing world, there are many misconceptions and outright lies. But the biggest secret is one that is so obvious that nobody wants to talk about or is even aware of. In this article, I share what I (and many world class marketers) consider to be the biggest “secret” in Internet marketing.

At this point, you’re probably wondering? “What’s the BIGGEST secret?”

Before I share this secret with you, let me share a common mistake committed by 99% of Internet marketers. Almost all Internet marketers I know can quote you their opt-in rate and spend hours, days, weeks and even months tweaking their landing pages to get the highest opt-in rate. This is accomplished by asking for as little customer information as possible and casting as wide a net as possible. This usually requires asking for only the first name and the primary email address.

In many industries, this results in optimizing for the wrong results. What do I mean by that?

I spend a lot of time in multiple industries other than Internet marketing (including real estate, art, etc.) and for a long time, I was focusing on increasing my opt-in rate but rarely closed any sales (my sales for my products and my clients’ products range from $997 to $25,000 per sale). When I thought about it, I realized that in all of these industries and especially at these price points, the sale is accomplished via the phone, not via the Web.

Thus, without realizing it, I wasn’t collecting all the necessary information for me to complete a sale (that is, I wasn’t asking for a phone number because I knew this would reduce my opt-in rate). Most of the “gurus” who are teaching list building don’t take into account industries that conduct business primarily offline and/or the fact that high-end products are not closed via email alone. Heck, I am not sure that any of them has ever tested their methods in offline businesses!

Now, I do a 2-step opt-in rate that allows me to have the highest opt-in rate on the first page and then ask for additional info (including the phone number and mailing address) on the “thank you” screen. This enables me to follow up via offline methods including postcards, direct mail and even telemarketing.

What does this have to do with the biggest secret in Internet marketing? Simple…the most valuable leads often require you to follow up using offline methods. However, this contradicts almost all list building techniques being taught, which almost always teach how to get the highest opt-in rate. In this case, I made more money by having a lower opt-in rate…but I got higher quality leads, which enable me to follow up via offline methods. Again, in many, many industries, the sales happen via the phone and in some cases via the fax and direct mail.

So, before you spend too much time focusing on optimizing your opt-in rate alone, think through the sales process and figure out what is the best way to close the sale and collect information for that to happen, even if it means a lower opt-in rate.

Now that you know the biggest secret in Internet marketing and the next time somebody brags about their 50% opt-in rate, you will know that he/she is probably optimizing on the wrong thing and leaving WAY too much money on the table.

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About The Author

Alex Nghiem is the founder of Blue Samba Solutions, creator of the Backend Cash Machine, a proven system for enabling clients to make up to 10X by building a backend of high-end products. His system has been used in multiple industries including art, real estate and many offline industries.




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