Creating Products in a Tightly Niched Market, Turning Down Coaching Clients and Why it NEVER Makes Sense to Work for Free
I recently spoke for a group of Image Consultants. Great group of folks I’ve discussed in this ezine before.
When I was asked to speak I first asked if I would be allowed to sell products.If they had said NO, I would have bowed out.
I never (well maybe if YPO or someone on that level called I’d make an exception) speak without being able to sell stuff.
That being the case, my experience has shown that if you try and sell a niched group a set of generic materials your chances will be slim to none. So, I needed some products that were Image Consultant specific but I didn’t have any and time was short.
What to do?
Here’s what I did and I suggest you COPY what I did for yourself. Naturally, I’d like you to give ME the credit, but here goes.
Create an order sheet that gives people two options. Give them one which consists of some highly targeted products. In my case, offered the group a bunch of very relevant marketing oriented products that were fairly generic. Things like LEAD GENERATION that could be used in any industry effectively.
As my FINAL product offering in Option A I also offered the group a collection of 6-8 interviews with other Image Consultants discussing their individual marketing needs and issues.
Option B consisted of everything in Option A AND a 90 minute consultation with me about their marketing efforts. The only condition was that I could record our interview and have the rights to sell it to others.
This became the NICHE SPECIFIC portion of Option A.
This may sound like I’m some brilliant info marketer but in fact I had procrastinated with this group to the point where I had NO other options. This became the only way for me to create some NICHE SPECIFIC products.
The concept worked so well I will do it this way from now on.
Doing things this way allowed me to produce a product while doing some coaching. This is good and very effective time management. It also allowed me to start creating a line of products for that market niche with limited resources. If I don’t sell any more of the interviews that I record, I would not have wasted a lot of time.
I suggest you follow my lead. Make sure that everyone you coach gives you a WRITTEN release to use your coaching session with them in any way you would like.
It looks like the Image Consultant folks may have me do a full day next year. Guess what one of my products I offer for sale will be?
Yup, you got it.
PUBLIC DOMAIN BOOKS
I have been going to a lot of used book stores lately. As much as I enjoy developing products for myself and my clients, I also enjoy making money with very little effort. Lazy, like most people!
If you find a book with a copyright before 1923 you can be assured that it is now in the public domain. The big problem is always whether or not information from that era is still correct and relevant.
The answer is YES . . . .IF it’s in the right field. If you are doing a line of products about YOGA then the information you find in books from before 1923 MAY be as good as the information you find in books published this year. Perhaps better. Yoga is NOT my field.
Your action point? Go into any and all used bookstores in your area. Look for books that are copyrighted before 1923. Get them scanned into a PDF file/Word File.
If you find a good, cheap place, let me know and I’ll share it with the rest of the group.
Use them as products after you create a new introduction and conclusion. The law says that if you make SUBSTANTIAL changes to the work you gain a new copyright for the work that you create.
I’m not THE expert on this topic but Nolo Press has a book about Public domain that is excellent.
Money and Friends
Over the last four or five years I’ve lost some friends. There are people out there who put money ahead of friendship.
Should I be surprised? I guess not, but I’m still a little disappointed.
Living in Vegas I can see how people get intoxicated with money. When they start making more of it, some people start to make bad choices.
Just recently I’ve seen a formerly VERY good friend succumb to the money trap. it is quite evident now from all of his actions and associations that money has now replaced anything else as the yardstick he uses as to who he will be associated with.
I’m convinced that if you ‘do the right thing’ you’ll be rewarded long term.
I’m serious. I think the best LONG TERM strategy is to do what is honest and ethical. You’ll make more money than you will doing it the other way.
Can I Talk to a Few of Your Customers?
I just got off the phone earlier today with someone from a doctor’s office. I was inquiring about a service that some doctor’s perform on an out-patient basis.
Before having this procedure done, I wanted to talk to some of the people the physician had worked with. They said no.
Let me let you in on the fact that the procedure is a vasectomy.
I’ll be honest with you. I don’t want to use someone to do this procedure who learned his/her skills via a correspondence course.
I want someone with experience. LOTS of experience. I asked them if they could put a little faucet on my leg just in case I wanted to turn it on and off. They said no. Too bad! They make you come back for the more expensive operation of you need it reversed.
Talk about a ‘back-end!’
Is it tough to get people to talk to other potential patients about this? Yes. Probably so. Are there privacy issues here to overcome? Certainly. Can they be overcome? Definitely.
If I were the doctor I would offer to rebate clients a certain amount of money if they would be willing to speak with my new potential ‘customers.’ This way you could get real people who have worked with the doctor to let you know how things went.
Doctors are a tough group to try and convince. Since I mentioned to a few people that I was considering having this done I’ve had a few people who have approached me who said it was ‘a piece of cake’ and I shouldn’t worry about a thing.
In my case, I’ll be honest, I’m still a bit concerned.
Why it NEVER Makes Sense to Work for Free
I just exchanged emails with someone where we had agreed to a barter arrangement for some of my coaching services. This is fairly recent.
I went against my better judgement and agreed to this deal and therefore the fault is 100% MINE.
As a quick aside, when I first moved to NYC I met a newly graduated NYU dental school student. We became fast friends and he became my dentist. Since I sent him so many new clients, he treated me for free. As time went on, I still got treated at no charge but the quality of my care decreased.
Moral of the story: When you do anything for free it devalues the service rendered. I THOUGHT I had learned this lesson. Evidently not.
Please learn from MY errors.
Sticking on the MEA CULPA theme. I have ANOTHER personal screw up to report.
The guy who I know here in the Las Vegas area who assured me that his gas mileage was increased with the new fangled pill I told you about was wrong.
I have now finished trials in one of my own vehicles.
NO increase in gas mileage. He was a friend and I believed him. Maybe I should be more skeptical. Please don’t send me your ‘I told you so’s!’ I’ve heard enough of them and beaten myself up pretty bad on this one.
All I can say is sorry, I’ll be more careful next time.
Why do I do this kind of thing? Whenever someone calls me with the latest MLM scheme I have a standard response: ‘Feel free to tell me all about this venture, but under one condition. This will be the LAST conversation you and I EVER have, now, go ahead.’
That’s how I feel about most of the ‘deals’ that people approach me with. I may screen out some good stuff but mainly I protect myself from a lot of junk.
This one slipped through. Again, my fault.
The Fred House Fund Contest
I have spent a MOUNTAIN of cash on my new house. Yes, it has everything I wanted but I’m pretty well drained of cash and have credit lines pretty well maxed out
As a result, here is the latest FRED DEAL:
I’m going to hold a contest. I’ll give you more details in a future email, but I will tell you that a portion of the proceeds will go to support one of my ‘pet’ causes, www.AuntMarysDoghouse.com.
More details to follow shortly. This will be a VERY interesting promotion, so make sure to read the next email I send you.
Turning Down Coaching Clients – Use Your Gut
There are certain people that I should not coach. They may be PERFECT clients for you, but with me, they would be an awful match.
How do you know? Over time you build up a sense for these kinds of things.
I had a guy ask me repeatedly to coach him today via email. He led off with his being annoyed that I had not returned his call. That was true. I’m often times very busy. My ‘regular’ clients know they have to badger me to get through.
This is the kind of client I want.
Speaking of the RIGHT kind of client, let me tell you about a new one named David Bullock.
Dave is my IDEAL client. He listens and then implements quickly. Net result? He is doing some amazing things.
Watch for him! He’s a rising star in the internet marketing field and a future business book best-selling author. Mark my words!
Check out: http://www.DavidBullock.com
Do you know someone who always has THE KEY to life?
I bumped into an old friend/business colleague who reminded me that I had to tell you this story.
Every time I see him he has always JUST discovered the NEW answer to the universe. It is clear from his description and enthusiasm that he TRULY feels this way.
I always probe to find out exactly what it is and how it works. I’m frequently unhappy to find that the description gives me no REAL idea about what they are talking about.
Call me crazy but I’m getting a bit tired of all of this NEW AGE MALARCHY (spelling?).
People who feel they have found the KEY to life and who have a ‘system’ to make it all work.
I’m a really happy guy. I have my own systems of beliefs and think (know?) I’m on the right track. Evidently this friend feels the same. The difference? I think that my path may be very different than his. AND, I’m not going to try and CONVERT him to my way.
I frankly don’t care who is right because the only person I need to worry about is me.
Put that in your pipe and smoke it!
Finding Love Online
I’m writing a book about HOW to find love online. As you may recall, that’s how I found my lovely mate, Sabrina.
Here’s what I need from you.
Similar to the whole Chicken Soup concept I want YOU to send ME your best story about how you found love online. If that wasn’t how YOU found your true love then you probably KNOW someone who did.
Have them (or you) email me at:
story (at) findloveonlinebook (dot) com
If that email bounces back. Hold your horses as my webmaster may not have put it up yet. Make sure and resent it later. I want the good ones!
I want to know the method or system that you used. I’d like to compile all the best ideas to put into a book that I’m finishing up on the topic.
If your story is used I’ll give you credit and a link to whatever website you want. Within ethical bounds!
Remember, if you contribute to this book you’ll need to spill the beans on exactly HOW you did what you did.
If for some reason you don’t want to do that, then this project is NOT for you.
Speaking of NOT for you
I happen to like Howard Stern. Yes, he’s crude and all of the other stuff, but the guy is a true genius. As cheap as I am I pay $14 a month more on my cable bill to get Howard on Demand.
Earlier tonight I was listening to an interview with a guy named Jay Thomas. If you’re old enough you may remember him from either his radio show or his character on Murphy Brown. If you have to ask what that is, I will feel old, so consult Google instead!
This guy Thomas is a genius. Star athlete, stand up comic, radio talk show host, Emmy award winning actor, etc.
What I liked about Jay was how natural he is on camera.
Someone called me today and asked me who I would suggest for coaching on the speaking process. My answer: Lou Heckler. He is a true genius in this area.
If you are SERIOUS about speaking, Lou is the guy to get coaching from. As opposed to a lot of other speaking coaches who try and make you into something you’re not (with all kinds of acting BS), Lou will help you be MORE of who you are on stage.
Tell him I sent you!
Til next time,