Info-Marketing Mistake – Overproducing on Initial Product Launch Just to Save a Few Cents

We’ve seen it time and time again, especially with new authors getting a book published for the first time. They become so consumed with getting the lowest possible unit cost on the printing of their new book they order 5000 copies right out of the gate. So instead of paying $3.98 or $4.98 per book they get the unit price down to $2.98. Hooray, they saved a dollar or two per copy.

What happens next? 100 cases of books weighing 40 pounds or more each arrive at their home. They get stacked in the corner of the bedroom or in the garage, and there they sit, month after month after month. Sure, a few cases are opened and some books ship, but you’re continually stepping around boxes and cursing yourself for ordering so many books.

You’ve tied up thousands of dollars in inventory that you hope you can sell. Hey, but you saved $1 or $2 per book.

If you’re producing a “big box” package, you might also save some on the unit cost by producing more initially. But, unless you have a proven track record and can pretty accurately predict how many units you can sell, you’re better off spending more per unit and having a lower quantity produced initially.

“Big box” packages can cost $30 to over $100 depending on what all is included in your package. So, you can conceivably tie up tens of thousands of dollars in production for units you hope you can sell – all because it saved you some money on the per-unit cost.

But what do you do if you sell more product than you expected?

Have a plan in place to deal with your customers in case your product launch is more successful then you anticipated. If you ask your fulfillment house to produce 100 sets of a product for a launch and then you sell 300, you’ve created a potential problem you’ll have to deal with to keep your customers happy. Turnaround times for additional production can be several days or more.

It is recommended you have some digital component to your package that people can begin to read or listen to right away while they are awaiting arrival of the physical package. Or, if the package price justifies it, pull out a disc or small manual that can be shipped immediately to keep them happy until the “big box” arrives. Produce more of these up front than the full packages so you can immediately fulfill a portion of the package to all your customers.

It’s primarily a matter of managing customer expectations. If you keep your customers informed about the status of things proactively, you can significantly reduce any possible negatives that can result from having customers in a back order scenario.

Marketing Plan Specifics: Link Content Marketing To Advertising

Business owners and Solopreneur consultants typically maintain memberships in professional and business organizations and those organizations invariably publish a newsletter. Organization members are encouraged to advertise their wares in the publication. What should you do?

The answer is to confirm your budget after checking out the rate card and jump on it if you’re able. Consider the advertising opportunity as an extension of the content marketing that you produce. If you do not write a blog or newsletter, then advertising is your content marketing and you must make the most of it.

First, consider who will see the ad. If potential clients are members of the organization, then you definitely want to advertise in the newsletter and if available, the organization directory as well. There is also a second audience for your advertisement and that is the organization big shots.

Placing ads in the newsletter and/or directory of the right organization will cause the big shots to look upon you more favorably. They will likely reward you with valuable opportunities for exposure. In exchange for your ad, you can expect to be invited to moderate or speak on a panel, or receive some other showcasing opportunity. You may even be nominated to become an organization big shot yourself. It’s a political thing and if you can scrape together the budget, you are advised to join in.

Frame your approach to the ad in terms of content marketing, that ubiquitous new term for advertising copy. Content marketer and ex-advertising executive Barry Feldman says that first, determine what potential clients need to know about where and how your services fit into their business needs and then decide what action you want them to take on the road to hiring you to solve those needs. Those pillars shape your ad copy, I.e, your content marketing message.

Your content must be compelling, communicating your brand narrative and providing information that matters to prospective clients, even if the audience consists primarily of your peers, rather than prospects. Peer organization big shots can become good referral sources, so take the time to produce persuasive content.

Because life has become a barrage of marketing messages emanating from various media, create content that makes your ad pop. Spotlight two or three products or services only, so that potential clients and referrers will not become confused about what you do. Hire a graphic artist to design a sleek and eye-catching ad.

Be authoritative, never arrogant, and perhaps also a tad provocative, as you concisely describe the challenges that cause clients to hire you and the unfailingly excellent results that you deliver. Weave in terminology that clients use, so that your content will resonate. Remember the call to action, to inspire prospects to contact you when in need of your kind of products or services.

After interested parties read your ad and decide they would like more info, what do they do? Your ad must tell them. Do they email or call, or do they go to your website to fill out a short questionnaire and wait for your response?

Generating prospective client follow-up, also known as in-bound marketing, entices prospects to commit to evaluating the fit between your services and their needs. Most ad viewers won’t take the plunge but if even one does, you will be on the road to good ROI for ad dollars spent. If you get invited to meet with your prospect, you will be 85% of the way to a contract.

As I’ve said before, social media gets all the headlines, but tried and true forms of advertising are still able to deliver results. Advertisers must approach ad copy as content marketing now and aim to teach as much as sell. From the 1960s Mad Men era to the new millennium, if you tell the story in a way that grabs prospective clients, you will get the sale.

Thanks for reading,


Entrepreneurs – 11 Tips to Successfully Market Your Information Product

When creating the marketing plan for your information product, you can use these 11 tips to juice up sales in no time:

1.  If your product has` broad appeal, don’t sell to everyone. Instead, re-package your marketing to focus on very specific groups. Remember, inch-wide, mile deep niches are the best.

2.  Use ‘bonus overload” when packaging you product.  Make the offer so good, it will seem as if the prospect will not have to pay for the original product due to the fact that the bonuses are worth so much.

3.  Market to one person at a time.  Use the word “you” a lot, when writing sales copy to your client.

4.  Offer a no-hassle guarantee that includes something that your competition does not, such as a 200% guarantee, or try-before-you- buy purchase plans.

5.  Make sure that your info product cures a pain that your prospect has.  If your product is only an item on your prospect’s wish list, as does not solve an immediate pain (more money, status, weight loss, health, security etc.) then you are highly less-likely to create a sale no matter how good your copy is.

6.  If you want to have your site exposed to the entire world in a matter of 10 minutes, use Google AdWords to begin your marketing campaign.  You do not have to wait weeks to be picked up by the search engines, and there are tons of tools and stats up the wazoo.  AdWords is amazing, and you can split test your ads, changing them as often as you like.

7.  You must have testimonials.  Period.  You have to have testimonials from previous customers on your sales page in order to create a level of confidence in the person making a purchase so they don’t feel like they are first.  Customers have been screwed so many times that they do not trust anyone.  People won’t necessarily read your testimonials, but they will expect them in all of your material.

8.  You have to have an amazing, show-stopping, no-holds-barred Unique Selling Proposition (USP), which will eventually permeate all of your marketing material for a specific product, spinning off headlines, sales copy, mailings, business cards, uniforms, and anything else you can think of.  The USP is the number one thing you need to create before starting any marketing endeavor, and 95% of small businesses have it wrong.  The USP will make or break the success of your business.

9. Use bullets on your sales page that explain every benefit of your product.  Every single benefit, from every angle is explained and turned into a bullet in the ad copy.  That way a prospect can quickly scan down the page and have the sales letter answer every possible question he/she could have.  Once you have your bullets done, then you can go into explaining the reason why you are selling your info product.

10.  Create a tollbooth, don’t compete on price.  You want to create a situation where your customer can only get the information product from you.  If you get into a system where everyone is selling the same, crappy $24 e-book, and trying to undercut each other, you’ve missed the boat.  You want to sell original content that no one else can get anywhere else, content so good, that you can raise the price and double your income without losing a customer.

11.  Never stop communicating with your clients.  As you sell products, you will build a list.  This list is golden.  These are already paying customers, your best.  If you keep your list happy, by not bothering them too frequently, but always letting them know you are still there, you can sell new products to your list over and over again.