Ethical Information Product Creation, Joint Venture Ideas and Writing Copy
In this Issue:
*Discipline and Focus
*Joint Venture Ideas
*Ethical Product Creation
I went over to a local casino here in Las Vegas to go to a meeting of the Las Vegas Internet Chamber of Commerce. Whenever I go through a casino I’m always tempted to play Craps of Blackjack. I RARELY do.
I only play any casino game these days when people come in from out of town.
Why? I’ve disciplined myself. I know that although I have occasionally won when I play craps, in the long run I’ll lose. So, I discipline myself not to play.
I discipline myself not to eat a pint of ice cream every night. Although I work out like a fiend so I can eat my pint of Ben and Jerry’s 2 or 3 times a week. The concept that you can eat a portion of the pint and then “save” the rest just doesn’t work with me. I eat the whole thing EVERY time.
Whenever I hear people complain that they aren’t making enough money or getting virtually anything that they want you can usually trace it back to a lack of discipline.
Children (in every study they have ever done) always have a hard time forgoing short term gain for long term rewards.
Discipline is the ability to forgo short term for long term gain. I may want to watch TV every hour I’m awake but I’ll never get my work done.
All of us have our own areas where we lack discipline. For some its sex, for others food and for still others it’s another “fill in the blank” item.
Discipline is the key to being successful as an information marketer. Combine discipline with FOCUS and you are virtually assured success.
So you’re a pretty smart person? Pretty high IQ? Yeah, me too! Guess what? I think that the ability to be disciplined and focused is OFTEN hurt by being relatively intelligent.
As I write the above paragraph, however, I’m reminded that one of my friends who has both of these items in spades is NOT unintelligent, but he is the exception, not the rule.
The person that I’m thinking about here is Alex Carroll. I’ve mentioned Alex numerous times in this ezine. I direct you to www.TheRadioGuru.com to take a look at his site.
Talking about this “stuff” reminds me of how poorly I exercise both discipline and focus as compared to Alex.
What makes Alex so disciplined and focused? I don’t honestly know but I know that he’s got it. Is it innate or is it learned? I suggest to you that it’s a combination of the two. I think that Alex has some very strong innate genes that make it more easy for him to be disciplined and focused.
However, the majority of his ability to practice these two traits is LEARNED. The problem is that it’s not easy.
Not for him either I would imagine. But he knows he has to do certain things to get what he wants. And he must want it bad – because he does it!
It’s not easy for me to write 3-4 pages a day. BUT, if I don’t want to do that then I won’t get 4 books written a year. I’ve determined that writing this many books each year will help me get to my long term financial and personal goals.
Remember, you probably won’t make a whole lot of money from your books, but they will get people to your websites where you can sell them all types of other products and services.
Quite frankly, my friend Bob Bly makes me feel like a slacker given the number of books he’s cranked out over the last 20 years or so. How can Bob have written this many books? How is it that he’s been such a successful copywriter? Clearly, discipline and focus have to be right up there with any other reasons that he might give.
If you want to be successful as an information marketer I suggest you learn how to practice both of these traits.
My problem is that like you, I’ve got adult ADD. I come up with a thousand great ideas each day. Just ask my friend Scott Hove (http://www.HallofFameMall.com) about this one. I’ve never seen anyone come up with so many ideas in a 24 hour period.
Only one problem.
The greatest number of ideas doesn’t win the game. The game is won by the person who IMPLEMENTS the ideas.
There is a big difference between knowledge and implementation. Lots of people KNOW how to do things, but few people DO those things. I’m convinced that there are tons of people who are brighter and more clever than many of the millionaires out there. One problem. They just THINK about the ideas. They DO nothing.
Here’s how I handle this conundrum (a word I always feel compelled to use at least once a month, either in written or verbal form). I list all of my ideas. I then ask myself which ones will produce the greatest amount of both long and short term revenue. Since cash flow is not my primary issue these days, I concentrate on those ideas that will produce the greatest long term revenue.
I also make sure and hit only forehands. Let me explain.
Years ago I did a speech somewhere. At the same event I saw a woman do a presentation on a book she had written a book called “Soaring with Your Strengths”.
The whole premise of the book is that people should concentrate on doing what they do well and not trying to improve in the areas that you aren’t as good.
This goes contrary to what most people tell you. Conventional wisdom would be that you concentrate on improving where you are weak (she calls this your backhand).
Instead, she says, just concentrate on doing even better in the area where you’re already really good (your forehand).
So I focus and try to exercise discipline in the areas where I’m hitting forehands.
What are your forehands? If you’re like me, they aren’t that numerous. For me it is developing products and a couple of others.
Use your focus and discipline in these areas.
Writing copy for your websites and other offline marketing is key to your success as an information marketer.
I’m putting together an ebook on exactly how to do this.
Rather than make you wait to see the book, I’d like to give you the outline to get you thinking about the process.
Some people would tell you not to do this because someone might copy your work and attempt to create their own book/ebook on the same topic. Remember, you can’t copyright an idea, only your specific presentation of that idea. So forget it.
Don’t worry about people copying your ideas!
Concentrate on doing your own work and don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. Also, the people who do something similar to what you’re doing may turn out to be ideal JV partners. These days, some of your competitors may turn out to be your best partners.
Here’s the outline:
4. Opening Line/Paragraph
5. Build Rapport
6. Demonstrate Credibility
7. Develop Bullet Points
10. Pricing Discussion
13. Reason to Act Now
JVs – Can they only work when reciprocal?
I just got an email from a well known online marketer. We’ve been trying to find a way to work together. He sent me a copy of one of his programs and I quickly found out that all of his material is strictly PC based.
Being a Mac guy, I was unable to even look at the product. After going back and forth with our discussion he just emailed me to say that he didn’t think we could work together.
I suggested that MY material would be great for his list. He said he was only interested in doing a deal where we both mailed to each of our lists and promoted each other’s products.
This response is curious to me.
I suggested that my material would be “perfect” for his list – and it would be. I’m anxious to see what his response is, but I suspect he may not want to do the deal with me because of my not being able (not willing) to promote his product.
Many of my customers are NOT Mac people like me. That’s fine, but I couldn’t even preview the product.
Let’s assume, for sake of this example, that his product is NOT appropriate for my list. Does this mean that he shouldn’t promote my product to his list?
There are many products that I recommend (see my site http://www.FredSentMe.com) where those same people that I’m promoting don’t promote my products and materials.
No big deal. They may not feel my material and information is appropriate for their list.
There is no reason why Joint Ventures MUST be reciprocal.
In some cases it may not make sense. The only question you need to ask yourself is whether a product or service is appropriate/useful/necessary to the people on your list. Don’t demand that everything be reciprocal. Instead, ask yourself if you are serving your customers.
This is the only question you need to ask.
Ethical Product Creation
Given that you can’t copyright ideas I’ve got an interesting ethical dilemma right now.
Over the past 6-9 months I have been bugging someone to let me market some of their materials. This product happens to be the BEST product in this area.
And it’s a topic that I know that my customers would be intensely interested in.
My problem is that despite repeated efforts to try and get this person to let me market the product, I have gotten no response.
I’ve asked over a dozen times and still no response.
Here’s the thing. Not to be arrogant, but I COULD produce a better product in this topic area. Why? Because this is my forehand. The people who produced this product may be the Tiger Woods of this field, but I’m the Butch Harmon.
Let me explain. The product was produced by people who are actually doing what is described in the product better than anyone else out there.
They are good teachers. They are GREAT at what they do but they are GOOD teachers.
On the other hand, I’m a great teacher. I’m only good at what they talk about in this product.
So, if I were to produce a product like theirs, I’m certain that the product would be better. Why? This is my forehand. Their forehand is the actual doing of what they discuss in the product.
If this is confusing, let’s go back to Tiger Woods. He is clearly the best golfer (don’t talk to Vijay Singh) on the planet. He is not the best golf teacher. Arguably that distinction goes to Butch Harmon. Tiger’s former teacher.
The guys that produced the program that I’m referring to are clearly the Tiger Woods in the topic that they cover. In the area of product creation, I consider myself to be the Butch Harmon.
Butch Harmon doesn’t play golf as well as Tiger. He DOES teach people how to play golf better than Tiger can.
So, if I were to produce this product that I’m referring to, I believe it would be better. BUT, I didn’t want to do that because the person is a friend. However, I have now waited almost a year and haven’t gotten a response to market this product.
I have repeatedly told this person that unless I was given the rights to market this program I would do it myself. I’ve been either ignored or put off for close to a year now.
Given how important the information is to my list I feel compelled to tell people about the concept.
I have done everything but jump off a building to try and become a remarketer for this product. I’ve done all I can.
I’ve also let this person know that unless I get the rights to market the product I WILL produce one of my own.
This hasn’t helped to get a response. I haven’t even gotten a NO. I’ve just gotten NO answer. This is confusing and frustrating.
This would be easy if this person wasn’t a friend.
But business is business and more importantly, my clients and customers need to hear about this information.
I’ve now done everything that I can.
In a case like I’ve described here I will reluctantly proceed to produce my own version of this product.
As is true with many products, my version will be shorter and more compact. I will forgo all the war stories (which are very interesting) and get straight to the facts.
I don’t know about you, but as a hardcore info marketer, I’d prefer to get right to the facts and dispense with the fluffy stuff.
My advice is this. If you find a product that you really like and think it will help your customers, don’t reinvent the wheel unless you have to.
Instead, try and find a way to sell that product to your list. If you do EVERYTHING in your power to try and license or become a dealer for this product and the other party is unwilling to “play” then you have to decide: should you do it yourself?
In my case, I worry about hurting a friendship with the individual I’ve described, BUT, the information is so important that I must go ahead.
I’ve given him full warning and I’ve tried for close to a year.
If I didn’t know and like the person involved, I don’t think I would have tried quite as hard or as long. In this case, he’s a friend. This makes it tough.
I hope this helps when you find yourself in a similar situation.