Have you noticed how so many ads, especially ads for today’s hottest programs, all sound the same?
- “Earn $500 a day!”
- “No selling! No phone calls!”
- “Fire your boss!”
- “Newbie friendly!”
- “Never pay for leads again!”
- “Just click three times!”
Sometimes it feels like everyone is promoting the same thing at the same time, doesn’t it?
And that begs a very important question …
Can anyone really make any money promoting a system or product that is so over-promoted?
More importantly …
Can YOU really make any money promoting a system that is so over-promoted?
My answer is … YES YOU CAN!
But not by doing what everyone else is doing.
You need to be different than the others who are beating their head against the wall with no results. You need to be more strategic than they have been taught to be.
You don’t need to work harder than everyone else (although hard work is required) but you do need to work smarter than everyone else.
And I’m going to show you a few ways to do that in this three-part series.
FIRST A WORD OF WARNING
Sorry to sound so dramatic here but this is actually very important.
Not all products deserve your promotion!
There are some products out there that promise the moon and deliver only disappointment. They promise too much too fast with no real effort, and that’s just not the real world.
If anyone had found the “magic loophole” or some crafty way to beat the system and make a million dollars with no experience and no effort and no expense they sure as heck would not be selling it on Clickbank for $37!
So be sure to not fall for the hype but instead promote really great products that have stood the test of time. If you have been told that high gravity alone is enough to mean that a product is worthy of your time and promotional efforts you may not have been told the whole story.
I have an article about choosing great products here if you want to know more.
Now, back to the topic at hand … how can YOU successfully promote an over-promoted product?
To begin we will cover five principles. Then in Part 2 I will help you write a strong profit-pulling ad. Then in Part 3 we will talk about placing that ad and how you can avoid disappointment when running ads.
So let’s get into Part 1, five principles to apply when promoting a highly-promoted product.
Principle 1 – Don’t Use The Company Ad Or URL
Every company I know hires writers to write great ads and promotional pieces for their associates or affiliates to use. Nothing wrong with that. They are helping affiliates get a head start by providing ad copy. And that’s a good thing.
But what happens when literally thousands of people are placing the same ads?
The ads become almost worthless. People read the first few lines, or the headline, and say to themselves “Yeah, I’ve heard this before. Not interested.” Your ad simply doesn’t stand a chance because people pre-judge it. They think they know what they need to know about your offer and simply don’t click.
This is one reason that so many ads get seen but not clicked!
And it is the reason why you must avoid using the ads the company provides for you.
By all means, you can test their ads to see if they work for you. If they have ad copy they claim works, and if you have reason to think that the ads are not being used too much, then use them and see what happens. After all, tested and proven copy is powerful.
But the truth is different – the truth is that many (if not most) affiliate programs are not giving you “tested” ads but rather ads they had someone write for their affiliate page. I can’t prove that scientifically but I know it’s true.
The ads might sound good but sounding good and working well are two different things.
Be sure to write ads in your own voice. This is the only sure way to stand out from the crowd when promoting an over-promoted website.
One easy way to do this is to modify the ads the company provides you. By changing the headline or simply rearranging the paragraphs you can often make a dramatic difference and make the ad more appealing.
I will show you an easy formula for writing a great ad for yourself in Part 2 of this series.
Principle 2 – Focus On One Problem And Solve It
Professional sales people have known for a long time that the human mind gets confused when asked to make too many decisions at one time.
This is why classic advertising (the kind that works) gives readers ONE choice to make.
Let me give you an example from the world of selling cars. Let’s pretend that you want to buy a new car and have decided to make the move. You do your homework, take the test drives and are ready to go.
At the moment of decision the sales person makes a rookie mistake and says “What color do you want?”
Now your mind is reeling with the possibilities. You begin to recall all the pretty colors you have seen. What color DO you want? What about your spouse – do they care about the color? What about the color the other car company had? You actually liked that color better but like this car better. You wonder if that color can be put on this car?
Soon you are uttering those deal-killing words every sales person dreads hearing … “I’ll think about it”
Not good. You might be back, might not. But one thing is for sure. You are not taking action today.
Now here’s a good closing statement, one that our imaginary sales person would have been better off using.
“Would you prefer the frosty white one or do you want the midnight blue instead?”
That’s a great closing line because it takes the choice off of saying yes or no and puts the choice instead on which one to buy right now.
Let’s look at another one. “Want to drive it home today or would you like me to fill up the tank and deliver it to you tomorrow?”
Again, no matter what the prospect chooses the sales person wins.
THIS IS WHAT YOU WANT FOR YOUR ADS!
No matter what the reader chooses, you win.
Your ad, be it a banner ad, solo ad, pay per click ad or any other form of ad IS your sales person.
So how does this apply to you?
Your ad needs to focus on one benefit and one benefit only, even if your product offers a dozen benefits.
Let me give you an example. The Directory of Ezines offers members many benefits. They save time, they save money, they get free ad writing … on and on it goes. I could list a dozen benefits or more.
And I do on my sales letter. Because that’s where listing benefits works.
But it my advertising I want to focus on ONE benefit at a time because that makes it easy for the reader of my ad to say yes and learn more about the site. Once they say yes to the click and visit my site it’s up to my sales letter and my follow up system to do the job of selling.
That’s because the ad can only sell the click. It cannot sell the product.
So you’re going to focus on ONE benefit in each ad.
That’s great, but how can I know which benefit will matter to them?
Answer: You don’t, so you stack the deck in your favor by selling only SUPER benefits. You will learn about super benefits in Part 2.
For now remember these two mini-principles.
- A confused mind cannot make a clear decision.
- We must make it as easy as possible for the people who see our ads to say “yes” to learning more about our product.
Principle 3 – Sell Benefits, Not Features
This one is easy once you see it but can be confusing for people who are new to selling things, especially selling online where the convincing gets done by words or video or an image instead of an actual conversation.
The best way I know to think of the difference between features and benefits is this.
- A feature is something the product does
- A benefit is what that product does for me
Each feature of the product you promote has a corresponding benefit.
This is a principle as old as time itself. People care about what’s in it for them. That’s natural and normal really, so why let our ads talk about anything else?
Our ads must talk about what they want. After all, that’s what they really care about.
Here’s an example: When I bought my daughter a car I wanted it to have side impact air bags. The feature here is a high safety rating and protection from head injury in the event of a crash from the side.
But that’s not why I wanted them.
I wanted them because of the peace of mind I get (and my daughter gets) from having the safest possible situation.
I was buying peace of mind, not side impact air bags.
So the question to ask yourself is this — what is the company (assuming it’s a business opportunity) I am representing really selling? Are they selling a members area with 75 videos to help you learn to do something quickly?
No, they are selling freedom. They are selling a lifestyle. They are selling independence.
In Part 2 we will cover how to inject your ads with these emotional appeals.
Principle 4 – Never Send Anyone To The Company Website
That might sound radical to some, but follow the logic and see if you agree.
Let’s say you work hard to promote your new-found venture, and spend a few bucks buying some pay per click ads. You insert your good old affiliate link as you’ve been instructed. And now Paula Prospect sees your ad and clicks the link.
Whose business are you building now?
The company’s business, that’s whose.
Sure, you might make A sale or two. But the company will make a fortune. Over time they will market to Paula again and again and again. Nothing wrong with that, it’s how people make money online.
But make no mistake — the company is building THEIR mailing list off of your efforts.
Now to be fair about it there are times when this is okay.
If you are new and don’t know how to create a great squeeze page or create a winning follow up email series then you are far better off using something created by a pro instead of something that doesn’t work as well. If the squeeze page and follow up system the company you are promoting uses works and is proven then you are better off, in the beginning, using their system.
But do create your own squeeze and follow up system as soon as you possibly can. Do begin building your own list. It matters, and it matters much more than most people realize.
Succeeding online ultimately really is about having your own list.
The evidence for this is overwhelming actually. I know of no successful person online who does not have a list of their own and who does not market to that list as a major part of their promotional efforts.
Principle 5 – Use An Autoresponder Address AND A Website
Here’s an “old school” piece of online marketing that works incredibly well but is used by very few marketers.
The idea? Include an autoresponder email address AND a website URL in your selling message. This can work for other forms of advertising too but it works really well for email marketing since the person reading your ad will already be in their email program.
Let me ask you this — why does every click have to go to a website? Answer: they don’t.
As I talk to people I hear over and over again that people do NOT click a link in the email ads they get because they want to finish processing their email. Only makes sense really, humans like to batch things together.
We don’t wash some of the dishes after supper, we wash them all. We don’t play 14 holes of golf, we finish all 18. We don’t go out to lunch and only have iced tea, we order a meal.
Email is no different. When we start reading our email we really want to finish reading (or at least scanning) all the new email.
So why not capitalize on that fact and make your response device sending an email to learn more instead of visiting a site?
It’s faster. It’s easier. And it works.
The person who responds still gets on your list. They still get the information you want them to have. But they do it at their own pace.
Instead of interrupting them you are letting them get the information at a time of their own choosing! Instead of trying to “drive” them you are attracting them.
This is so powerful, and so often overlooked.
So that’s it for part 1 of the series.
We covered a lot of ground so let me recap.
The problem we are trying to solve is helping you stand out from the crowd when promoting super-popular products that are being promoted by many other affiliates.
In Part 1 I made these five suggestions.
- Don’t use the same ads everyone else is using.
- Let your ad focus on one problem and the solution to that problem.
- Sell benefits, not features.
- Build your list, not the company’s list.
- Give them multiple ways to respond quickly to your ad
In Part 2 we will cover how to write ads that will help you stand out from the crowd. I’ll be sure to cover a few types of ads so you have options. Options are a good thing.
In Part 3 we will cover how and where to buy ads and how to stay safe when buying ads. I think you’ll like that one too. Hope so.
I have to thank my faithful Directory of Ezines members for the idea behind this article. In the last six months I’ve received about 200 phone calls (no kidding) from affiliates of these various programs asking “Is it saturated” or “will my ad for this product even be noticed?”
It is through working with these members that I was able to test the methods above and prove they work.
There ARE ways to promote even the most over-promoted of programs. It takes thinking outside the box and a willingness to try new things.
But if you do that, and succeed, you will have created your own mini-marketing plan that is proven effective. Once you do that, you will have the power to promote any product in any market you choose.
And THAT is a beautiful thing indeed!