Archive for the ‘selling’ Category

Kickstart Your Social Media for $497. Money-Back Guaranteed.

June 9th, 2016 No comments

Nobody looks at the Yellow Pages anymore.

If you want your business to thrive, you’ve got to maintain a strong presence on FaceBook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media sites.

For $497 I’ll build you a personal content management system that gets your business into all the major social media, where everyone can see it. If you don’t like the work I do for you, for the next 30 days I’ll promptly refund every penny you paid, no questions asked.

So what exactly do you get?

  • A 30-minute brainstorming session to uncover the hidden potential in your business. We’ll find the qualities that will make you stand out and attract the best clients and customers
  • Fresh, original content posted on WordPress, FaceBook, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter. This new content comes straight out of our brainstorming. It’s tailored to sell your services and products, but it is also material your market will actually want to watch, read, and see. We can easily fit it with the online marketing you’ve already done, or I can set everything up for you if you’re starting from scratch.
  • A flagship Youtube video. Google owns Youtube, and those search engines love Youtube videos. We’ll make a video that promotes your core message, embed it on your website, post it on your Facebook page and promote it through Twitter and Instagram. You could potentially reach thousands of viewers.
  • A Facebook Page that really works. There are two common mistakes that prevent your FaceBook page from turning heads and attracting real clients who want to do business with you. If you don’t already have a Facebook page for your business, we’ll set it up right the first time. If you’ve already got one, we’ll level up your Facebook mojo with new posts and videos that increase “likes,” and leave visitors eager to come back and learn more from you
  • A personalized, easy to follow marketing plan with templates and ideas so you can continue to produce new content in the future.

If you’re unhappy with this service for any reason, for 30 days after we finish I’ll refund your money, all 49,700 pennies of it, no questions asked.

How do we start?

If you’re interested, call or text me or fill out the contact form below. We’ll set up a 30-minute session by phone or Skype, where I’ll ask you 14 questions.

Usually that’s enough to know whether we can work together. There may be a few follow-up questions but usually after the first conversation I’ll have 2-5 key points that will be the basis for most of your social media.

Over the next few days I’ll write up your core content, which tells your story and puts your business in the best possible light. Once you’ve approved this basic content, I’ll have everything I need. My team and I will get to work on your video, and soon your story will light up all the major social media platforms.social_media-marketing-deal-expires-August

All you need to do to get started is text 213-453-1327 or fill out the contact form below:


14 questions to unleash your secret potential

May 24th, 2016 No comments

There is a spark of greatness in you.

You already knew that, of course. The hard part is finding that spark and using it to light a fire. You may not know what your spark is, but it’s already sitting there in plain sight. Or else it’s just underneath the hood.

I’m about to show you how to find it.

Some 50 years ago, a guy named Bud Robbins discovered the power of looking under the hood. He got a job trying to promote the Aeolian Piano Company. Ever heard of them? Neither has anybody capo d'astro bar aeolian piano company

Robbins had to persuade the average starving musician to buy an Aeolian piano when they could get a well-known Steinway for the same price.

He took a tour of the Aeolian factory and found out that their piano weighed more than a Steinway because of a metal part known as the capo d’astro bar.

The capo d’astro bar is useless until the piano has been in use for 50 years. After 50 years, the capo d’astro bar prevents the aging instrument from warping.

The manufacturer saw this as a simple engineering fact, but Bud Robbins saw the potential story. A little bit of further research led him to the discovery that the New York Metropolitan Opera was using an Aeolian piano, and the extra longevity was starting to pay off.

When the Met relocated to the Lincoln Center, an opera singer told Robbins, “About the only thing they’re taking with them is the piano.”

Saying the piano was “built to last” wouldn’t be such an extraordinary tagline for an instrument which lasts generations. But the quote about the Metro taking the long-lasting piano with them–well, that became the headline for a full-page ad in the New York Times.

The outcome: Thanks to the story behind a hidden metal bar, the Aeolian Piano Company had a 6-year waiting list for their product.

Bud Robins later wrote about this experience and what it means for every business, every product: “No matter what the account, I promise you, the capo d’astro bar is there.”

Finding your bar

If I opened this post by telling you about the lifespan of a piano, you would have moved on within a few seconds. But you’ll listen to a story. A story about the underdog piano company, and the hero Bud Robbins who has to save the day.

Everyone loves a story. The most popular video games involve a story. We’ve been telling stories around the campfire for thousands of years.

Find your story, and you’ll find your greatness.

When I meet with a new client, one of the first things I do is try to figure out their story. Here are a few of the questions that will help you uncover yours.

  1. What were your dreams as a kid? What did you enjoy doing most in your spare time? What did you worry about?
  2.  What was your first job? What was your first entrepreneurial effort?
  3. What is the scariest thing that ever happened to you?
  4. Who was your business’ first client? What was memorable about the experience?
  5. Who was your worst client? Why? If you could teach them one thing, what would it be?
  6. Describe your first year in business.
  7. When did you know you were going to make it? What was the decisive event?
  8. What is the first thing you do when a new client is interested in doing business with you?
  9. What is the last thing you do for your customer or client?
  10. What, if anything, do you do to follow up/keep in touch with past and existing clients?
  11. Why should I do business with you, instead of all the other alternatives, including doing nothing?
  12. Who is your most valuable partner or employee? What makes them so valuable?
  13. If you could put up a billboard anywhere, where would you put it and what would it say?
  14. What habits or outlook do you attribute to your success?

You should try to write out the answers to all of these questions. Better still is to actually talk to someone about these answers. More spontaneous ideas will come up, and you can test their power by the other person’s reactions.

I don’t want to give away my clients’ secrets, but here are some interesting quotes I’ve dragged out by using these questions.

“Many real estate agents are lazy parasites who only do the minimum amount of work for easy money.” (A member of the California Association of Realtors)

“I’m always talking to people who might be five or ten years younger than me, and I’m telling them about some new useful app or software that they’ve never heard of and they don’t want to use. You have to keep learning or you’re toast. I’m always testing out new tech for my clients.” (A 47-year-old video editor)

“I’ve been trying to find out why I’m still alive, what I’m meant to do on this earth. Helping you might be the answer.” (A business owner who nearly died a dramatic death when he was 24)

Any of these quotes could easily lead in to a compelling story that would make eligible clients want to do business with this person.

Now it’s your turn. What is your story?

Categories: marketing, selling Tags: ,

Persistence or relentlessness?

August 30th, 2013 No comments

“To tell you the truth,” said the company president, “the only reason I agreed to take your call is because you’ve been relentless.”

This was a gruff, hard-to-reach guy who I was calling to help out an old client. He was known to deal with programming code better than with people. Within fifteen minutes he had done everything I needed from him.

He also reminded me of something I had started to forget about persistence.

Before the big-shot company president took my call, I left a total of three–count them, three–messages with his receptionist. This was hardly a Herculean effort, but to his mind, I had been “relentless.” He isn’t used to someone making three attempts to reach him. This was such unusual behavior that he considered it relentlessness.

What this tells me is that most people give up after the first call.

I’m lazy, but it seems that most people are lazier than me. And this means you’ve got yet another reason to do what you already know you should.

If you’re in marketing, sales, or really any profession in which you have to get other people to do things, you can easily place yourself above your rivals. Just keep going. Be persistent. It seems that most people won’t do this.

You’ve probably heard the statistic that it takes seven contacts to make a sale. I don’t know of any actual research to back this up, but it’s a good principal. Back in my freelancing days, it was normal to do business with a client after sometimes a year or two of calls, postcards, and email. Most of my competitors gave up before they were even tired, and soon I would be the only one left.

You know that persistence pays off, even if you don’t yet know it in the core of your being, even if it’s not yet tattooed on the inside of your medulla oblongata. You’ve heard people say it enough. Get the tattoo.

The lesson I’m trying to give you here is that it doesn’t always take as much persistence as you’d think. Just be persistent once or twice, and you’ll soon be labelled “relentless.”

Relentlessness gets things done. Relentlessness is persistence that talks.

Be relentless.


The Bright Side of Entitlement

August 29th, 2013 No comments

It’s easy to bash them. People who feel like they’re entitled to something get a bad rap.

But I think they’ve got a bright career ahead of them.

When you feel down in the core of your being that people owe you something, you’ll be able to ask for it with conviction every time. And you won’t take “no” for an answer.

Napoleon Hill wrote a story about this in his famous book, Think and Grow Rich.  A young black girl had to ask a white man for fifty cents. This was in the South, in the days of Jim Crow laws and other injustices. The man repeatedly told the girl to leave, but she persisted. Finally he threatened her with violence, but just before he struck the blow she looked in his eyes and shouted, “MY MAMMY’S GOTTA HAVE THAT FIFTY CENTS!” (Hill uses all capital letters in this story)

The man was defeated by the little girl’s conviction and will power. He handed over the money and left her alone.

Chutzpah always wins. And it can be cultivated.

Think of the guy sitting on the sidewalk with a paper cup and a cardboard box, asking you for spare change. You’re getting something for your money. A smile, good karma, the feeling you helped someone, or at least the peace of this guy leaving you alone once you pay up.

He talks to hundreds of people a day. He faces rejection more than a dozen times every hour. Yet he persists. I’ve had people follow me down the street just to get a quarter. The clever ones have an answer to every objection I raise.

This is excellent sales training.

But the real secret, I think, is that some people truly believe you owe them. They have a right to your money. They are entitled to it. This belief can make you rich.

If you just can’t psych yourself up to feel entitled to something, Zig Ziglar offers another way. I’m paraphrasing here, but basically he said, “I’ve got your product here in my car, you’ve got my money in your pocket, and I ain’t leaving until you get your product and I get my money!”

This is actually an essential attitude if you’re in sales, or really if you own any kind of business at all. If you believe the person is entitled to your product, and you demand reasonable compensation for it, then you’re unstoppable.

If I ever need to hire and train a salesman, I might start looking in skid row.


Why is economic recovery so slow?

May 27th, 2010 No comments

Somewhere out there, for every person who has done business with you, there are maybe ten others who could or would, but aren’t because of several reasons:

They haven’t heard of you.

They don’t understand what you can do for them.

They didn’t need you when you approached them in the past, but they do now.

They aren’t aware of the advantages you offer over your competitors.

The aren’t aware of the need for your services, and the potential benefits of working with you.

What are you doing today to keep in touch and enlighten them?

Categories: marketing, selling Tags: ,

I said I wouldn’t do this, but…

December 8th, 2008 No comments

I’ve been sick the last few days, and it could have been worse but Johana nursed me back to health with love and attention and her grandmother’s soup recipe.

I told myself I would only publish hard, practical marketing advice, and stay away from the kind of stuff you saw in “The Secret.” You’ve probably heard all you want to about gratitude, especially this time of year.

But here it is. Expressing gratitude, or even just feeling it, has a hard practical value. Maybe it will also magnetize the universe and attract all the good things you want. I don’t know. But here’s something practical you’ll certainly gain by just taking the time to feel grateful.

Your mood and your confidence will soar. Think about all you’ve got, all you’ve done, and especially all that’s been done for you and you know you can’t fail.

This confidence is critical when you’re selling anything. Gratitude makes you more approachable, attractive, and sincere when you meet a potential client. You’ll naturally be coming from a place of helping your client make a purchase decision, rather than trying to push a sale through.

I could go on about this, but let me leave you with a practical tip. Take a few minutes every day to just think aobut what you’re grateful for. It will start to change the way you think and feel about your life. And ultimately this will enhance your marketing and selling power.

I’m grateful that you read this.

Categories: marketing, selling Tags: ,

What do you mean I throw like a girl?

August 19th, 2008 No comments

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When I was a kid I couldn’t throw. Even though I was taller and faster than most of the kids my age, I turned into Droopy when you put a ball in my hands.

My friends said I threw like a girl. This confused me because my sister was an outstanding athlete who could whip my butt in any kind of competition.

Then about 15 years later, my buddy Chris and I were throwing rocks at a rusted old truck in the middle of a field in North Dakota. He pointed out that I was holding my elbow a few inches too low.

I moved it up, and right away the next rock felt more natural in my hand than all the thousands of clumbsy baseballs I had tried to lob across the wet grassy fields of my childhood. My arm felt like it was doing what it was meant to do all along.

That rock went sailing fast and far, and it hit the truck with a loud, satisfying “clunk.” Ever since, I’ve been able to nail anything I aim for. That minor adjustment erased 20 years of awkwardness and humiliation.

If Chris had been a personal trainer I would have paid him a fortune for that 30-second throwing lesson. Wouldn’t it be worth it?

The story of the plumber with the hammer

This is just a real-life variation on the story of the plumber who charges you $150 to pound one of your pipes with a hammer–five dollars for the pounding, and $145 for knowing where to pound.

Ultimately, he fixes your sink, and that’s what you’re paying for.

When you really get this, you’ll experience a big shift in the way you think about your knowledge and skills, and the way you bill your clients. They’re not paying you for the number of hours you put in, or how hard you work–they’re paying for the outcome.

You’re an expert. Someone out there might need to have their elbow moved up or their database reindexed. But they don’t know this.

They know they have a problem or a wish. They’re paying you for the outcome. As long as your marketing focuses on the outcome, you’ll sell more and earn more and you can even charge more.

We could get a little silly here and start making up formulas like “Outcome = Income” but we won’t.

In some aspect of their personal, professional, or financial life, your client “throws like a girl,” or the equivalent of that. Your job is to fix it, improve their swing, adjust their posture, raise their FICO score, or whatever.

As long as you deliver, especially if you go beyond what they’re expecting, you’ve earned your keep. But don’t sell your time, your work, or your product.

Sell the outcome.

To get ahead in business, you have to stand out from the competition. You have to do something different. You have to be bold.

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When storytelling isn’t enough

July 3rd, 2008 No comments

You might have heard marketers and sales professionals, and especially copywriters, pitching the idea of a story. But they skipped one essential that can shoot your results into the stratosphere.

You see, a good storyteller does have a distinct edge in copywriting and selling. You’ll be more original, more real, if you can tell a good story. But anyone can tell a story and find a way to sew it onto their sales message. That’s the crude way of doing things.

The most savvy copywriters actually reverse-engineer their story so the sales message is embedded into every stage of the story. Here’s how it works.

First, look at your basic pitch. There are several specific statements that you want your listener/viewer/reader to believe to be true. The typical sequence goes something like this:

1. The listener has a problem or a need (you want them to believe that they suffer from this)

2. Your product can solve the problem/fill the need (you want them to believe this to be true)

3. Your product is the best way or only way to solve the problem/fill the need (you want them to believe this is true)

4. In fact, right now is the best time to solve the problem (you want them to believe this is urgent)

Now, go back to your story. Instead of just using it as an “opening” or attention grabber, find as many elements in the story as possible that support each of the above points. You might have to take some poetic license, embellish the story, or change the way you tell it.

The result is irresistable, because human beings are wired for listening to stories. Instead of just telling a story that segues into a sales pitch, your story now is the sales pitch.

This is a very advanced copywriting secret. It doesn’t take long to explain, but it’s very hard to do. Start practicing.

Categories: copywriting, selling Tags:

Who came out ahead in 2007?

January 8th, 2008 No comments

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Here’s a simple test. You should already know the answer, but bear with me.

Think of all the money you made in 2007, and figure out how much of it you’re still holding on to. It’s probably less than 100%, unless you’re financially free and you work for entertainment.

Now think about all the customers and clients who put money in your pocket in 2007. You gave them something in exchange for that money, and chances are they’re still holding on to 100% of what you gave them.

If you helped them buy a house, or something that goes in a house or outside a house, they probably still own it. They’re sharing it with their friends and family, relaxing and enjoying and maybe even showing off.

But most of the money you made on the deal is gone. There are bills to pay, vacations to take, and unexpected surprises.

Between you and your client, who got the better deal over the long term?

If you did something that helped your clients start, grow, or operate a business, they’re still bringing in revenue from their business. If you sold an insurance policy, your client is safer from unexpected adversity because of you.

Their wealth and security are growing and improving, because you closed the sale. But they paid you a pile of cash that is shrinking every day.

OK, maybe you managed to invest some of it, but your car needs gas and your kids need shoes and your yard would look like a bad part of the Mojave Desert if you didn’t pay for seeds and plants and tools and a wealth of water to keep everything alive.

Your products and services keep on serving your clients, long after the money they paid you is gone.

So who got the better deal?

Think about this whenever you’re feeling reluctant to do more selling, more marketing. Your clients need you! How would they ever get by without you?

A lot of smart, successful people have struggled to work through the fear, shyness, and even shame associated with selling.

Remember this in 2008. You’re practically giving everything away, sweating out your time and money just to beg your prospects to steal the best you have to offer!

You’re also increasing the net amount of good in the world. You’re solving problems, reducing stress, promoting health and happiness, building wealth for others as well as yourself.

And because of this, you should shamelessly promote your business in 2008, every time and every place you can.


To get ahead in business, you have to stand out from the competition. You have to do something different. You have to be bold.

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