What I Learned in 2009…

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2010 has arrived and I am super excited about the year ahead. But first, I want to take one final look at 2009.

2009 was an amazing year for me and I’ve learned quite a few golden nuggets that have literally transformed my business. In this article, I would like to share those with you.

The first, and certainly one of the most impactful lessons I’ve learned this year is the power of video sales letters.

Video sales letters have increased my conversion rate from 2% to 10%.

Now, I want you to imagine for a moment what it would mean for your business if you were able to generate double-digit conversions.

Personally, as you probably already know, I don’t believe there is a big red easy button online, but this is literally the fastest shortcut I know to creating a high-converting sales process.

The best part is that you don’t have to be a world-class copywriter to create killer video sales letters. In fact, I pretty much stink at traditional sales letters. But, I have found a very effective formula for creating highly-converting video sales letters. So that means that you can do this too. There are no super human abilities required here.

You simply follow the formula and get results that are USUALLY reserved for highly-paid copywriters.

In fact, I have a free webinar that will teach you my exact formula. You can check it out at:

http://www.superaffiliateclub.com/public/Video_Sales_Formula_Webinar.cfm

If you take the information in the video above and actually start implementing it, you will see a HUGE transformation in your business in 2010.

Speed of Implementation


Speaking of implementation, that’s another key that has transformed
my business in 2010…. speed of implementation. You’ve probably heard
before that money likes speed. And it’s true.

Success comes to those who take action.

In business, speed of implementation is the name of the game.

No one is going to give you a perfect business plan or the exact steps that you need to take. This is not like a job where someone tells you exactly what you need to do each day.

You are in charge of your own success.

And that means doing things before you’re comfortable doing them.

That means implementing even when you’re unsure of what the outcome might be.

You’d be surprised how many people fail online because they simply take too long trying to perfect everything.

To achieve success online, you must fail as fast as humanly possible.

Failure is the key to progress.

The faster you fail, the faster you’re going to succeed. Now, it may sound counter-intuitive but it’s true. Especially when building a business.

Think about anything you’ve done in life. Let’s use sports as an example.

Let’s take baseball. When you first start, you fail… A LOT. But that
failure is simply a result and it leads you closer and closer to success.

Unfortunately, our society does not value the power of failure. In school, we’re taught on a daily basis that failure is bad. But in reality, it’s the ONLY way to get to success.

If you don’t take action, nothing happens. You can learn and learn and learn. You can plan out the best marketing strategies in the world. But if you don’t execute… nothing happens.

The faster you get something out there, the faster you’re going to make money.

At the end of the day, the key is speed of implementation.

High-Leverage Activities


The third key to my growth in 2009 has been focusing on high-leverage
activities.

As you probably know, your list of subscribers is one of the most important assets in your business. It’s also one of the biggest leverage points in your business.

You can leverage your list of subscribers at any time to funnel thousands of visitors to the website of your choice.

Unfortunately, I see way too many people online going for the one-off sale and trying to sell first before they get people on their list. BIG NO NO!!

If you want to create a real business online, then you will focus all of
your attention and marketing efforts on sending people to a squeeze page where you can build a list of subscribers.

If you don’t build a list, you’ll be missing out on 95% of your potential
revenue. It’s that simple.

So in my business, I focus on the high-leverage activities that are going to grow my list the fastest.

The high-leverage activities in my business include things like:

Ad Swaps/Autoresponder Swaps
Integration Marketing
Forum Marketing
High-Profile Content Syndication
Interviews/Webinars/Teleseminars/ & Telesummits
Guest Blogging
Creating Pillar Content
Testing for Maximum Conversion

These are the activities that are going to grow my list the fastest.

These are the activities that every time I do them, they always have a huge impact on growing my business. I actually have a piece of paper taped to my desk with all of my high-leverage activities so I can stay zoned in on the most productive tasks.

It’s the 80/20 rule in action, which says that 20% of your efforts
create 80% of your results.

The key to maximizing your results is to focus on the high-leverage
activities in our business that create 80% of your results.

Unfortunately, it’s easy to get lost in the minutiae of running a business.

But if you want to win in the game of business, you must zone in those
high-leverage activities that are going to produce the greatest result.
Otherwise, you’ll simply be spinning your wheels.

If you do just ONE high-leverage activity per day, you are going to create exponential growth in your business this year.

One of the best ways to identify your high-leverage activities is to ask
yourself the question “If I could only work 2 hours per day in my business, what would I do during those 2 hours to grow my business?”

By doing this you will actually force yourself to identify the money-making activities in your business.

The Power of a Low Front-End Offer


The fourth thing I’ve learned this year is the power of a low-end front offer.

By creating a low barrier front-end offer, you will get exponentially more people into your sales funnel. The whole goal of your front-end offer is to get as many people into your sales funnel as possible. You want to find who the “buyers” are on your list.

So you want to reduce all possible friction and create a low-barrier to
entry.

Once they are in your funnel, it’s much easier to sell them follow-up
products of increasing value and price.

But the hardest sell is that first one. So make sure that you have an
irresistible offer.

In fact, I would even suggest that you create a $1-trial, or even a free + shipping and handling offer just so that you can get as many people into your sales funnel as possible.

I would also strongly suggest that you attach your offer into a continuity program because it’s going to make a dramatic difference to your visitor value.

One of the most powerful things you can do in your business is to create a $1 trial or a free + shipping and handling offer. This is going to funnel a HUGE portion of your subscribers into your membership site (which will then pay you on a monthly basis).

So the idea here is to give them MASSIVE value right up front to get them to try out your membership site. The biggest key here is to really provide incredible value. Your “offer” is the key to making this work and convert like crazy. That’s why people practically give away their home study courses and only require you to pay shipping and handling. Because they want you to get a taste of the kind of value they provide and funnel you into their membership site. And if they’re doing their job right, you’ll want to remain a member.

Continuity allows you to get triple the conversion than if you sold the
product right up front. I get about a 10% sales conversion rate on my
$1 trial offer for the Super Affiliate Club. Now, I haven’t tracked
the retention rate yet, but the average membership site gets a 3-month retention rate. Now, of course, I’ll be doing everything I can to increase that, but let’s just use that as our example figure here.

So the monthly cost for the Super Affiliate Club is $39 x 3 months = $117.

Now, imagine for a moment trying to sell a $117 product right up front at a 10% conversion rate. It would be dead hard and nearly impossible. But by creating a $1 trial attached to continuity you’re able to instantly skyrocket your visitor value and your conversion rate. Very very powerful.

Deepen Your Sales Funnel


You can then instantly increase the visitor value once again by expanding your sales funnel through a series of upsells and backend products.

There’s a certain group of people that will ALWAYS want to go to a higher level with you. They WANT to pay you a premium for a higher level of service.

So you MUST create higher and higher levels of value proposition.

If you don’t, they’ll simply find it somewhere else.

You can find a prime example of this on airplanes. Any time you ride in an airplane, you’ll find that “first class” is always full. ALWAYS. Because
there’s always a group of people who want that extra level of value.

Your goal is to focus on creating ONE well-oiled sales funnel. You send
ALL of your traffic to a squeeze page, which then offers them a $1 Trial with Continuity. You then offer them a series of upsells (which offer related products of increasing value). The upsells should essentially be no-brainers that bolt on extra value to the main product. And there will ALWAYS be people who want the higher level of value. So if you don’t offer it to them, you’re simply leaving money on the table.

You should also develop high-end backend products such as a $497 E-Class and a $997 Boxset.

The higher level products should be offered within the first month that
someone signs onto your subscriber list, because that’s when they’re the hottest and most interested in whatever you have to offer.

Mentors


And finally, one of the biggest impacts on my business in 2009 are mentors.

I make it a rule in my business to have a personal coach at all times. Now, keep in mind that this can be very costly. One-on-one coaching generally cost about $1,000 per month. However, it’s going to save you YEARS of trial and error. With a coach, you will achieve your goals exponentially faster. My business started growing by leaps and bounds once I brought a personal coach on board.

A coach provides you with the accountability needed to get things done 10 times faster and they hold your hand every step of the way so that you ALWAYS know exactly what needs to be done next. There’s no second guessing yourself.

Imagine how powerful that would be in your business… having someone who can answer any of your questions and guide you step-by-step to your goal.

Having a mentor has been one of the biggest keys to my success.
First, because of the incredible amount of accountability it provides. And secondly, because I am able to model after someone who is already doing what I want to achieve. Very very powerful.

I hope you enjoyed getting a bit of insight into what I’ve learned in 2009. But I’d really love to hear what you’ve learned in 2009 and what you’re planning for 2010. So please leave your comments below and here’s to an exciting and successful 2010!

28 thoughts on “What I Learned in 2009…”

  1. First of all i would like to wish You Very Happy New Year!

    I totally agree with you that video sales letter increase your conversions and i liked your speed of implementations point very much.

  2. Kim, awesome post.

    I really think you have this stuff down now. I am working to get to your level, but I have my time to put in still.

    I was definitely impressed as I could see the growth of your company and your brand over the past year.

    I got a question for you though, if you dont mind.

    I was wondering why you send all your forum traffic to your blog instead of directly to a squeeze page. I realize that you have an opt in on the right side of here, but aren’t blog optins notoriously lower than squeeze page opt ins?

    Then you could filter your squeeze page opt ins to each of your blog posts….

    Or did it work better for you the other way around?

    Thank you!
    Dan Brock

  3. @Daniel BRock

    Hey Daniel!

    Great question. But actually, I do send all of my forum traffic to a squeeze page. For example, if you look at my signature line in the Warrior Forum, it points directly to my squeeze page.

    I always advise people to send the majority of their traffic to a squeeze page. The only time I would not do that is when I’m commenting on other blogs and in my tweets on Twitter. Those both point to my blog.

    Hope that helps!

    – Kim

  4. Hi Kim…Happy New Year.
    Some good thoughts as usual. Yes…mindset and action are huge for success…in any business. Focus is so important too, since IM has so many distractions. It’s like…what do I tackle first? So the 2 hours to work idea you suggest is a good one.
    See ya around…and when are you opening your forum again?

  5. Hi – great article – especially the part about accountability – I struggle with this!

    Would you be able to tell me where you found your mentor?

    Thanks,

    Lynda

  6. Best wishes. Let 2010 be a turning point.

    It takes some time to learn a couple of things, but then you have to just go for it…and fail your way to success. I like the way you talk about failure.

    Also what you say about continuity programs is very true. And there are so many ways. The value trojan approach of Mike Hill is something to consider as well…that subscribers find it too much of a hassle to unsubscribe because it’s only say 5 dollars per month. If you have 100 subscribers it’s peanuts, but imagine you have 3000 or 30000!

    Thank you for your inspiring post Kim. [and for that great traffic video of yours].

    Cheers, JP

  7. Hi KIm,

    Well you put it all into perspective for all of us. Everything we do to improve our businesses should have valid reasons for doing them. Everything we do should have a checklist designed from things that work for us, to make sure we are repeating a process that is successful. Then repeat, repeat, repeate.

    But in the end we have to get good information from experienced Mentors. I learn a lot of cools stuff from all the people I meet in the business, however if it were not for John Thornhill, Dave Nicholson and Kim Roach I would be just floundering around. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not making good money yet, but understanding what to do, how to do and why to do are the biggest things in understanding the whole business.

    So I’m building a list, writing articles, blogging, creating multiple sites, and creating links for the many streams of possible profits. This way I’ll be ready when the flood is coming in. Currently I’m working on products and supporting documentation for giveaway programs (along with everything else).

    Thanks for your follow-up on the year.

    Jay Mueller
    JayLynne Enterprises
    http://www.jaylynne.com

  8. Kim: You’re super affiliate site was a bright spot for 2009 and you keep adding value. I hope you continue to focus in on strategies to avoid distractions and unnecessary information overload. Thanks for your great work and outstanding teleseminars.

    Bob D.

  9. Kim,
    I appreciate all that you have shared and look forward to what 2010 holds in store.
    Let me know how I can help…

    Cheers,
    Jonathan

    ps
    You are an action taker….who gets results. Waiting for your personal coaching to come along.

  10. Hey Kim!

    Thanks a lot for always providing us with such amazing content. I really liked this one a lot. Hope that 2010 is full of great stuff for you, so can you also share those with us :D.

    Apart from that, I am planning on opening my own membership website now that 2010 has begun. I am already in the process of creation and what not. I was wondering…where can I contact you about affiliation? We will have an affiliate program, and I was wondering if you would be interested.

    Best Regards and Happy New Year,
    Jose

  11. Happy New Year Kim.

    The $1 dollar offer on your super affiliate club was a great help to me in joining.I knew I wanted to join but i was in the situation of every time I make ends meet someone moves the ends and so it gave me a breathing space.

    The message I get from you overall is to focus on certain aspects and do them quickly and avoid getting distracted.

    Regards,

    LydiaG

  12. Hi Kim
    What I like about you is that you never send us “filler” info and it is always worth reading and so useful.
    I look forward to 2010 as being my “go get it” year.
    So thanks as usual for a great 2009 and look forward to your helpful information in 2010.
    Cheers
    Pam

  13. Some good tips there Kim.
    I loved the video sales formula.
    Finding a mentor that is affordable to some folks may be a challenge, perhaps if they haven’t got a $1000 to spend every month they could find a suitable membership site.
    Are you intending to open up your own membership site to take on more members Kim?
    If not, then what advice would you give to folks that might struggle to pay $1000 per month?
    All the best
    Anthony M

  14. Excellent post and happy new year to you.

    What you say in this post is powerful and really makes sense.

    I have learnt a lot in 2009, having gone from complete know nothing newbie to understanding the business and processes a lot better.

    I wil say that the biggest thing I have learned in 2009 is to plan, build a viable plan and simple processes and business model as possible. This way when you see decent results you become more driven to move things forward.

    The 80/20 rule resonates with me as part of my plan I was messing around tweaking blogs and doing little things to get traffic whilst missing the essential thing, building that list. I have put that right in December and bought in 450 Subs last few weeks.

    So the forefront of my plan now is to build my list to 5000 in the next 2-3 months then I have to work on delivering great content to keep subs on board. If it doesn’t deliver tangbile results, list building or list retention then it goes onto the back burner, simple as that.

    Happy New Year and keep up the excellent work!

    Peter

  15. Kim,

    Great summation of your 2009 lessons and so valuable to us who are trying to replicate your success. Thanks for the Super Affiliate site and all of its valuable content. Here’s to your continued success in 2010 and to each of your followers. Thanks again. Alan

  16. Hi Kim,

    Great sharing. There are alot of things I learned in 2009 too. One of them is the same as you which is to have a deeper sales funnel. Having a deeper sales funnel really allows us to increase the visitor per value if everything converts well.

  17. Hey Kim -you have perfect timing!

    I’m in the middle of designing a new website for The Sales Divas – we’re going to a membership model by the end of the month.

    I love the $1 offer as well as the free plus shipping!

  18. Hi Kim How are you?. You are such a inspiration to me. I first heard about you on a Chris Farrell Webiner. It seems like I am the only person involved in Internet Marketing here at the bottom of Africa lol. I created my own eBook – it can be downloaded FREE http://www.onlinegrenade.com/Explosive_ Online_ Success_Guide.rar Under traffic generation I have listed your site as a source of traffic technique source guide. i am a total newbie and a fact that I wrote the report has been such a huge step for me. You and Chris Farrell was the reason i just did it! Its true you can’t wait for perfection – Your achieve perfection through experience and learning from your mistakes. Thanks for the great blog.

  19. Great post Kim! You nailed it in the head with the point you make about “Speed of Implementation”. Most often it happens we only think brilliantly but dont have enough motivation or belief in the idea and we give up. Happens to the best of us. You wont believe but after reading just this one point, I have started implementing 3 of my projects (and that does not mean just buying domain and setting up wordpress) but much much more..much more than I normally do in a week…Thanks!

  20. Hey Kim,

    Happy New Years! << i know im a little late..lol

    Just wanted to stop by and say great post. I always enjoy the “lessons learned” type of posts.

    Great insight into what has been working for you. I love being able to see what tactics others have been using to build their business.

    I did have something to say in regards to what you mentioned about buidlind a list. I cant agree with you more that if you are not building a list you are losing a hefty percentage of the profits.

    I just feel it is always important to mention that the most important part of building a list is to properly build a relationship with your list. You need to consistently over deliver and provide value in order to get people to actually purchase from you.

    In order to do so it is important to interact with your list on a more personal level, or at least make your subs feel as if you are speaking to them directly. No hype.

    You consistently provide value hence why im sure you make a decent living from your list, i just thought i would bring that important fact to light.

    Thanks for the great content,
    Felix

  21. Hi Kim

    Thanks for a wonderful post, I learnt a lot (from you).

    My biggest lesson was taking action. That’s it. Correct the mistakes as I go along.

    Oh yea, and track what I do. You know, split testing etc.

    We must learn to take intelligent action, always try for better.

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