Have you ever been tricked out of your money?
I know that I have.
When I was a teenager I fell victim to the internet marketing hype, handing over whatever money that I had so that I could learn “the secret”. The sales messages, the stories, the glitz… it was all so hypnotic.
I’m not embarrassed that I fell for these scams when I was a teen. In life you sometimes pay for an education, and these were valuable (priceless) lessons that I got to learn from an early age.
Today I view these stereotypical internet marketers differently. I don’t care about their products, I care about their methods!
The truth is that these people are actually very good at what they do. They are expert copywriters, relatable, unshakingly convincing, and just down-right great at B2C sales.
I decided to learn from The Dark Side.
It was like any other normal day. I was taking a break from my standard work tasks to do a little research.
Specifically, I like to keep tabs on what the current trends are in the online marketing space, especially the men and women selling “programs” and “secret methods”. I find it worth studying their ways because clearly they know how to sell. There is a method to the madness.
I can’t help but laugh a little because while I am convinced each of these programs thinks that they are original, they all just say the same exact thing. It’s the same stuff that I fell for back in the day. Yet truth be told they don’t really need to change anything because human nature will always be the same. Sure the “methods” they sell may change with the times, but the messaging is consistent.
Even though you may stay far away from the internet marketer types (like the ones who sell get-rich programs), I find that it’s worth looking into their sales process to see if you can learn anything. I did this some time ago and applied it to my own business.
The result? More revenue.
Tools change, but the strategy is still the same.
When I do my research into these get-rich program, I watch some videos of an internet marketer that I have known of for some time. The last time I did this, he had a new product – or at least a new marketing campaign. This was great because I could see him in action, particularly his funnel.
At the top of the funnel was a “live” webinar. You and I both know that this webinar was not live at all as he was using an automated webinar program instead.
That’s not the worst of it though…
- He shot his video in selfie-mode on his phone next to an expensive car and big house. This was part of his lead generation to get you to sign-up for the “live webinar”.
- He offered “free training” which is really just a sales pitch.
- He attempted to get anyone watching to agree at multiple points in their webinar or video. Phrases like “press 1 if you agree” or “have you ever experienced”. This is because psychologically if you start agreeing on small things you will agree to bigger asks later.
- He outlined a typical scenario of someone trying to make money online, then went on to say he was just like everyone else at one point but “cracked the code”.
- He presented random testimonials from the training which is void of any actual context, just someone saying they made money.
- He mentioned “hustle”.
- He showed his PayPal account, but “not to brag”.
The hype was real. But all that washed off of me, because behind those distractions I could see the real secret behind all the madness.
Before these folks can sell their products, they have to establish trust – and they are so. damn. good.
I am not kidding you, this guy put on a masterclass of establishing casual trust in a very little amount of time.
The main reason that his messaging worked was because he knew his audience, and he knew what motivated his potential customers. All he has to do is to show them how he can help them accomplish what it is they really want. Once he does that, the sale is made.
It was so impressive, I immediately copied him.
Relax, I’m not in the business of lying.
But just like this guy, I am in the business of people.
I realized that this person knew his audience thoroughly, and I too needed to do the same so that I could craft the messaging just right. I’ve done this exercise a few times now in my entrepreneurial career – I created highly (overly?) detailed User Models.
In this process, I created the persona of the individuals who would be looking into my products. I gave them a name, background story, and described their personality. I found that the more detail that can provided into a User Model, the more pointed and relevant I could make my messaging.
This is important, because the next step after establishing a user model is to walk through a Buyer Journey in their shoes, addressing each phase in a way that will resonate with this fictitious person.
At each one of these stages you need to think from the perspective of your User Model archetype. What are they feeling during this process?
Logic helps to a point, but purchases are emotional. You need to understand the ultimate desires of the people looking into your products, and craft the messaging accordingly to address those emotions. This is exactly what the “Get-Rich-Quick” guru does, and does well.
You may be thinking that this seems… hard. Well yes, it does take a little work upfront. It’s not hard as much as it is time consuming because it takes a lot of thought and creativity.
For me it took a few weeks because I had created a handful of different User Models. From experience I would say that you should try to come up with at least three, and up to five.
Once you have these vetted out, then you need to make sure that you are creating content with the User Models in mind, on every single section of every single page on your website. Your value proposition for each model should be apparent.
I’ve done this a number of times now, most recently (and in the most detail) with the last LearnDash refresh. Every section of every page is designed with the User Model in mind.
And just like the “Make Money Online” Internet Marketer I admired, the site does a great job establishing credibility and connection, while simultaneously answering the relevant questions for these individuals along the Buyer Journey.
For example, based on one of my User Models there was a part of the customer journey that I wanted to address. It had to do with getting started with WordPress and LearnDash.
I’ll spare you the boring details. Out of that particular requirement came this:
This has helped the company in a variety of ways, least of which being that there are no longer as many pre-sales questions around the topic of getting started with WordPress and LearnDash. It also lets people know that they too are capable of using LearnDash, even if they don’t that they are tech-savvy.
It’s so good that it didn’t take long for one of my competitors to copy it:
So let’s boil this down.
It’s pretty easy to overthink this, so let me wrap-up by summarizing this entire selling approach in a succinct way.
Nailing down your User Models lets you proactively address the questions that will arrive along the Buyer Journey. As you answer these questions, you need to:
- Establish credibility
- Outline benefits (end-state) that customers care about
- Proactively answer their questions which further validates that they are in the right place so that they feel good about making the purchase
Said another (often over used) way…
Simply explain what’s in it for your customer if they choose you.
In order to do that, you need to know your customer’s story. If they arrive to your site and they feel like they “belong” (i.e. you are speaking to them directly) then you’ve accomplished the hardest part. You gained their trust and the sale is yours.
This is literally how every successful “Make Money Online” internet market has ever operated, and you too can use it to skyrocket profitability.