Planet Derek: Why People Ignore You – And How To Fix It (Episode 1)

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So I recently spoke at a conference in Las Vegas.

In the Q&A a business owner told me about what she does.

I had to interrupt…

“But why does it matter?”

And that’s where she stumbled.

I’m not putting her on blast, because the truth is as simple as this: she’s good at what she does, but when it comes to describing what she does to someone she doesn’t know… in a concise way… she stumbles… like most people.

HECK I EVEN STUMBLED ABOUT WHAT I DID FOR YEARS.

AND I STILL DO.

Ugh.

This problem is all too common.

And that’s why I filmed this video.

If you liked this video, I post much more video over there and I think you’ll dig it.

People like this particular business owner do GREAT work. They have powerful ideas. They support good causes.

However…

They struggle to talk about what they do in a way that immediately grabs attention.

Can you relate?

Well, this is a huge problem.

Why?

Because there’s a new, global currency that we’re all dealing in.

No, I’m NOT talking about Bitcoin…

The new currency is ATTENTION.

If you want to spread your message, attention is the first thing you need. Plus, you need to KEEP IT.

But the harsh truth is…

No one cares about what you do.

No one cares about what you say.

People only care about themselves.

(This is one of the main reasons why I tell people that … it’s not about you… it’s about them).

So how can you MAKE them care about what you do?

I reveal the answer in this new video.

You see, there’s a right way and a wrong way…

The wrong way sounds like jargon and puff speak.

The right way grabs attention immediately and draws people into your message.

You’ll also see in the video:

  • Why we’re ALL in the attention business now
  • What you can learn from the TV show “24” to make your message captivating
  • The truth about people who share content online (you’ve probably done this!)

Watch it now!

Planet Derek: The 5 Day Product Launch (Episode 2)

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So, you want to create a product launch?

I host a mastermind with business owners who do more than $500,000 a year in revenue and want to scale to multiple seven figures in revenue.

And they recently asked me the same question:

“What’s the best way to launch a product?”

Here’s what I said…

The Truth About Product Launches

When most people launch a product, they often just say, “Hey guys. I have this new product. HERE IT IS!”

And sure.

It’s not salesy. It’s true. And you know what? Some people may even buy. However, there are three types of customers: the buyers, the non buyers, and the Sideliners.

The Sidelienrs are people who could buy… should buy… but for some reason have not bought yet. They need some extra help. They need some extra education about how your product can or can’t help.

And that’s why I recommend you create a 5 day product launch.

It’s simple. And I cover it inside episode 2 of Planet Derek.

If you liked this video, I post much more video over there and I think you’ll dig it.

Please note:

Yes, I know the beginning is on a little bit of the longer side. We are trying this new style of vlogging meets content, and we are just getting the hang of it.

It doesn’t change the fact that the 5 day product launch is great. And I believe it can help. So watch the video. Check it out.

If you’re skimmers, and just want a quick little hit…

The 5 Day Product Launch (In Detail)

So, you want to just see what the launch entails? Here’s the complete breakdown:

Day 1 – Preview Content (Give people value and lead up to the sale)

Day 2 – Preview content (address mental blocks, and build credibility)

Day 3 – Introduce the product

Day 4 – Answer the most common objections about the product

Day 5 – Announce the end of a campaign (or create scarcity)

Now, of course some product launches can last a whole lot longer. And can go into much more detail. But, this is a good “first step” in launching your own product.

Doing this is better than sending just one email and that’s often good enough.

Now, here’s what I want to hear from you…

What did you do for your last product launch?

Leave a comment.

Planet Derek: Best Copywriting Book, Chris Rock Standup Comedy Show, and Why I Got Bored Of My Content In 2017 (episode 3)

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So, you want to become a better copywriter? Or writer? Or maybe you want to become a better public speaker?

You should watch this new video.

Why I Got Bored Of My Content In 2017

In 2017, I stopped making videos.

Why?

I GOT BORED.

How many times can I tell you to promote your work?

How many times can I say you need a sales page?

How many times can I say entrepreneurs need to learn how to sell themselves and their work?

And I got to the point where I rather throw myself under a bus than continue to say the same thing.

So, I stopped creating content.

I stopped making videos.

I fell out of the habit of writing blog posts.

But I’m back.

And in this video I have some interesting thoughts on Chris Rocks’ new standup comedy show, my favorite copywriting book, and why I got bored of writing my content in 2017.

If you liked this video, I post much more video over there and I think you’ll dig it.

And that’s why I decided to change things up and launch a YouTube reality tv show called “Planet Derek.” This is where I Take you behind the scenes of my life and share some interesting insights about business, growth, and entrepreneurship.

Need a FAQ for Your Site or Blog? Check the WordPress FAQ Plugin

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If you own a website, you understand that there are so many plugins, apps, and services looking to suck you in.
With limited resources, you can’t afford to try them all.

I understand that struggle, I’ve felt it too.

After building my website on WordPress, I became frustrated with how many plugins I had installed. I’m not a coder, I don’t excel at it, and I need plugins to help me overcome this hurdle.

Sadly, not all plugins are created equal. Several of them even failed to deliver on what they were designed to do. How useless.

Then I found

Creating a “frequently asked questions” section is important. It allows you to address your customers concerns, add rich content in the form of answers, and they make your website appear full.

In the eyes of Google, this is all good stuff.

Why Heroic FAQs?

For me, I like Heroic FAQs because it does its job. It comes with a lot of features, you don’t need to know how to code, and it is really simple to set up. Best of all, it was created by the HeroThemes team.

Some of the plugins great features include:
-An intuitive drag and drop interface
-One-page editor allows you to edit all FAQs on one page.
-Easy to use visual editor
-Allows you to add FAQs on any page
-Comes with 5 styles
-Images and videos can be added to FAQs
-Drag and drop designer
-FAQs look good on all devices

Here’s what I did
I use my FAQ section to plug additional keywords for SEO purposes. Heroic FAQs makes this process easy and takes away a lot of the design and coding headaches.

You don’t have to worry about coding or theme errors because Heroic FAQs seamlessly integrated with your existing website and making edits is simple.

Heroic FAQs only has one flaw in my books

If you only own one website, it’s a bit pricey at $49 for the basic version. For entrepreneurs with more websites, the Professional version will allow for 3 installs for $69, while the Business version allows for 10 installs for $149.

Most themes cost around $49, making this an expensive plugin.

It does its job really well.

Price aside, I highly recommend Heroic FAQs if you manage a WordPress website and need to design and build a FAQ section.

This plugin provides a lot of utility, and unlike other plugins, it actually does what it advertises really well.

My Score
Based on my experience with the plugin, I give it a solid 8/10. The only reason I didn’t give it a perfect score is because of the price.

The Good:
-It comes with a lot of features
-Building your FAQs is easy with the drag and drop builder
-Boost your SEO scores with additional content
-Responsive design

The Bad:
-The price
-It’s another plugin to add to your WordPress website

This plugin works. If you are worried about the price, try a demo out and see if it is a good fit for your website. .

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How to Get More People to Read Your Emails: 10 Top-Performing Email Subject-Lines of 2017

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Top 10 Highest Open Rate Emails of 2017

The headline says it all.

With inboxes getting more and more crowded, it’s crucial your emails stand out – now more than ever.

So let me share what worked for me this year… and why.

Ready?

Let’s jump right in…

Here Are The Top 10 Highest Open Rate Emails of 2017

Hi, I’m Derek Halpern, the founder of Social Triggers. Over the last few years I built my email subscribers from scratch to more than 250,000 subscribers and built a multi-million dollar online business as a result of it (we sell courses, software, and even have a health company, too).

So, needless to say, I may know a thing or two about good email subject lines. As you go through this list, I want to make one thing clear: these emails worked for me at Social Triggers.

And while you may fixate on the subject line and think about copying it for your own list… I recommend you read what I share below each subject line.

The psychology behind why these email subject line worked is much more important than the subject line themselves.

This is something I’ve shared countless times before, but it’s worth mentioning again.

Now, here’s the first email…

10. “How to make people like you in 5 seconds (or less)

Screenshot of email how to make people like you

Open rate: 34.98%

This is just a good ol’ promise headline. EVERYONE wants to be liked. It’s also specific because of the time constraint “in 5 seconds (or less)”… and it almost sounds too good to be true.

In 5 seconds? Really, dude?

But I had no problem making this promise, because the technique I shared to make people like you actually does only take 5 seconds.

The takeaway?

Make the right promise and make it specific. And if you can back it up, make it big and bold.

Note: Want to learn more about writing better sales copy? Here’s a link to a 4 minute video: .

9. “They asked for tough love. I gave it. It’s on video.”

Screenshot of email tough love email

Open rate: 35.87%

People clicked on this for the same reason they watch “Intervention.”

Tough love is also what I’m know for since I started Social Triggers…

I tell it like it is.

So, on the one hand people probably wanted to see me put someone else in their place. On the other hand, when you read this headline, you’re inevitably wondering, “Do I need to hear this?”

This email was about an interview I did with Entrepreneur Magazine. The show is called Tough Love Tuesday and

8. “FREEDOM!”

Screenshot of email freedom email

Open rate: 36.93%

This was my 4th of July email – Independence Day.

But instead of talking about America’s independence…

I told a story about my personal “independence day:”

The day I quit my job.

FREEDOM!

It’s a proclamation. It’s a big promise. It’s what I believe everyone with an entrepreneurial spirit strives for.

Not the freedom to be lazy and do nothing… but the freedom to do what I want, when I want, and how I want.

The peak moment was when I SMASHED my alarm clock. I was no longer going to live on anyone else’s schedule but mine.

This email didn’t even include a link…

But it was relatable.

It also stood out. Most people mentioned July 4th or indepedence day in their headlines. I went with all capslock as a way to stand out from other emails sent that day.

And that’s the key.

When you send an email, it’s not just about what subject line you use. It’s about the subject line you believe your competitors are using and then thinking of a way to “stand out” in the inbox.

I’ve filmed a video about this before… where I essentially said this… Even though I was talking about colors on a website, it also applies to the inbox. If your subject line stands out it will get opened.

7. So, this was a weird conversation…

weird conversation email

Open rate: 37.23%

Interestingly enough, this next email was a personal story, too.

And it was also about being an entrepreneur.

They key word in the subject line is “weird.”

Just think of those spammy “1 weird trick…” ads. They work because people can’t help but click…

But why?

Because curiosity!

We’ve all had uncomfortable or awkward conversations. And we know weird means “not normal.” So naturally, we want to know what happened.

Always remember:

What stand out gets our attention. What blends in gets ignored.

That’s why calling something “weird” immediately gets attention, and that’s why it’s such a powerful word.

6. “Watch her rewrite her sales page – it comes out great”

rewrite sales page screenshot email

Open rate: 37.37%

I didn’t like this subject line when I wrote it…

I was surprised it did so well.

This email was about a case study on writing an e-commerce sales page.

Why did people want to read this?

Case studies are popular because we want to see what worked for someone else… and if it can work for us.

So, think in terms of “before and after.”

Or “problem-solution.”

She rewrote her sales page. So… What did the sales page look like before? What did it look like after?

It’s also something people actively think about in my market. They want to see “before and after” pictures of sales pages… so I gave them exactly what they wanted.

5. This is unlike anything I ever wrote (it’s about fitness)

Screenshot of email about fitness

Open rate: 37.95%

This was the email I sent when I launched a fitness coaching group with my trainer Chris earlier this year.

Anything that’s weird or unusual is going to get attention (see email 7 above).

I usually write about marketing and sales. The novelty of me writing about fitness is what made people curious here.

Warning: Don’t overdo this.

I was able to say “unlike anything I ever wrote” because it was true: I never wrote about my fitness journey before.

I suggest you only call something “extraordinary” if it really IS outside of the ordinary!

4. Stop being cheap. Seriously. (not you. everyone else)

Screenshot of email about cheap people

Open rate: 40.21%

This is what you call a proclamation headline.

It’s a big, bold statement. An assertion… a proclamation!

It’s also slightly offensive. That’s why it grabbed attention instantly. BUT…

Who likes to be called cheap? Most people don’t… And insulting your readers is generally a bad idea.

Why? Because when you insult someone, their immediate reaction will be to get defensive.

They won’t even listen to what you say next. Now they’re in “I’m right, you’re wrong” mode. So they’ll dismiss whatever you say.

But when you’re in the business of helping people improve their business and life, like me, that’s NOT what you want…

That’s why I made sure to clarify. I’m not talking about YOU specifically. I’m talking about “everyone else.”

Now THAT got people interested!

I mean…

3. This is why some people can charge $1000 (or more) per hour.

Screenshot of email how to charge more

Open Rate: 41.49%

Who wouldn’t like to charge $1,000 (or more) per hour?

EVERYBODY wants to make more. And the subject line taps into this universal desire with a simple promise: I’ll explain why some people can charge more.

Of course, the implication is… If there are *some* people that can charge a lot more, there are *others* that can’t and don’t know why!

What everybody then wants to know is:

“How can I become one of those people who can charge more?”

So, in the video I reveal #1 secret to charging more.

Now…

You can use the “some… while others…” formula, too. With the right promise, the formula creates a slight feeling of envy. Enough to make people want to read on.

This is also good reminder not to overcomplicate things when it comes to subject lines. Don’t try to be too clever…

With the right promise and a little bit of intrigue, people will open and read your messages.

One note: Another reason why this did so well is because people often find themselves comparing themselves to other people… and that’s baked right into the headline.

2. I got into a fight with my video guy over honesty

Screenshot of email about fight with my videographer

Open rate: 41.49%

Be honest:

When you see couple argue on the street, what do you do?

You stop and look.

That’s the power of controversy.

As another example…

Why do I read pages of YouTube comments of people arguing about dumb sh*t? Again, that’s the power of controversy. We get to pick a side. As long as nobody gets hurt, it’s entertaining.

This is probably the main reason people wanted to read this email… “I got into a fight with my video guy”… because they got to pick a side.

1. “The most valuable page on my entire website…”

Open rate: 41.59%

All good subject lines open an Information Gap. But this one shows it perfectly…

An Information Gap is when there’s a gap between what we know and what we WANT to know. This is the driving force behind all curiosity driven headlines.

So what’s the gap here? Most of my readers run online businesses. OF COURSE they want to know which page on my website is the most valuable!

Combined with the “rule of 1,” this email performed extraordinarily well.

The #1 thing…
The most valuable…
The most surprising…
The most annoying…
The least known…

If I had to put it in a formula…

Desirable promise + Information gap = people will open your emails.

There you have it…

I rarely share behind the scenes stuff like this on the blog. Hopefully you find it useful. Let me know if you want to see more post like this.

If you liked this article, do me a favor and share it with a friend or colleague.

And, one more thing…

Right now, I’m looking to do two things over at Social Triggers.

#1. We are revitalizing the Social Triggers YouTube channel. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, I highly suggest you subscribe today.

#2. We are going to be doing some cool stuff on Instagram. Yes, we’ll share helpful content, but we’ll mix some humor in as well.

How to Create a Successful Social Media Giveaway

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Social media has taken the world by storm. Various businesses and brands are taking full advantage of it to reach their target audience via social media. Social media also helps businesses to increase their audience and building a customer base for them.

There are many strategies and campaigns used for this. One is . While it seems really easy, it is actually very difficult to launch a successful social media giveaway. Only few giveaways actually drive value to your business. That’s why your social media giveaway campaign needs to be effective enough in order to give your business the right boost.

Following are the steps that will help you in launching a successful social media giveaway.

 

1. Set a measurable goal

Your goal should be . When setting a goal for social media giveaway, you should consider the following factors:

  • What is the focus of this giveaway campaign, is it to ? Or it just focuses on increasing your likes on social media channels? Or is it really just a link ?
  • Once you have decided your primary focus, set a measurable goal, for instance if you want to increase 1000 likes, divide the likes into number of days you are running the contest. For instance 250 likes in a day, if you achieve these likes on first day, that means your goal was achievable. If you don’t achieve your daily target, you need to either alter your strategy or revise your goals.

One good example of the giveaway goal can be: a government encouraging its people to practice. But the right way would be to offer such a giveaway that audience will be tempted to go through this process because of the reward. No government ever enforces this through social media but since it is very effective, the use of which they wouldn’t otherwise.

 

2. Go beyond traditional marketing

The 4Cs are the . The 4Cs include customer value, cost, convenience and communication. When you are creating a giveaway campaign, you need to do complete research or your target audience, the product or service you are giving away and its impact on target audience. So, don’t just focus on 4Cs because they are not enough for reaching your goals. Modern social media marketing is very complex and it requires you to understand your customer’s psyche more than any modern marketing framework.

 

3. What are you giving away?

That’s a very important question since you will be the one bearing the cost. For instance, you are an internet services providing company product. You need to decide some important things like how many modern routers are you giving, who is most likely to buy your router and what is the cost that you are covering, what are your terms and conditions and so on.

 

4. Use alternatives like coupons

Some social media giveaway do not even giveaway any specific product but they instead make and offer discount coupons which is a great way to and increase your sales. This is a great way to save the cost of giving away just free stuff while not actually having the audience visit you.

 

5. The right marketing

Starting a giveaway might seem really easy but it really gets complex when you have to get people talking about it. So it is highly important to do the right marketing for your social media giveaway. In order to do the right marketing you have to think about the target audience who’d be interested in actively participating in your giveaway. It is really easy to get people talking for a t-shirt or hoodie but it gets really challenging when you try to sell a service. For instance, you are providing medical tourism services on online platforms. In this case the right option would be to take a little help from experts in the field who do proper , it might cost you a little but in the end it will be worth all the trouble.

 

6. Reach out to bloggers

Once you have designed a great social media giveaway, the next step would be to market your contest. There are many ways to do it but one great way is to in your niche and get them to talk about your contest. In return you can give a shout out to them on your social media channels.

For instance, a jewelry company could start a contest for marketing the launch of a series of engagement ring designs. Through an influencer’s site like which have a regular audience of jewelry shoppers, it is easy to get your message across to a very targeted niche of consumers.

 

7. Constant promotion is the key

Your giveaway should be constantly promoted in order to get more audience share and more responses. This can be done on all . You shouldn’t stay quiet when you have arranged a contest! People are most likely to listen to you during this time and you should use this time to get your message across and to gain more and more audience.

 

8. Keep the audience hopeful

Never say that this is the only contest you are holding, always keep your audience coming back for more. Tell people the date of your next contest or just tell them that you are having another contest pretty soon. Also, when you it is not necessary for you to hold contests every now and then.

 

9. Credibility is important

After you have built your credibility, your audience will trust you with everything. For instance if you post , your audience will take your word even if you have nothing to do with cell phones. But make sure that you don’t mislead your audience.

 

10. Do announce the winners

There are many fake contests trying to seek attention of users. Most of them, in the end, just annoy customers. That’s why it is important to announce your winner rather than just reaching out to them. When you announce winners, make sure to cater other hopeful contestants too and tell them how much you appreciate their participation.

 

11. Get the winners to share their experience

You must get your audience to review your giveaway product and their experience with your audience. This will encourage others to follow your social media channels and .

 

Wrapping up

Have you had any experience with a social media giveaway? What worked for you, and what didn’t? Share your experiences in the comments below.

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How to Write Post Blog Posts That Rank Well

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Everyone wants their blog posts to be seen. That’s only normal. But only a few understand what makes the difference between a blog post that ranks well and one that doesn’t. You don’t necessarily have to be an expert to write blog posts that rank consistently. Here are a few tips on how to write blog post that rank well.

Use Long Tail Keywords

If you do have some experience with SEO, you may be already familiar with long term keywords. In short, long tail keywords are variations of core keywords but with extra words attached to them. Using long tail keywords has many benefits. First, they usually have much less competition than shorter, more obvious keywords. Second, they have a tendency to rank very well because of their highly targeted nature. Don’t make the mistakes of stuffing your blog posts with tons of keywords, instead, focus on 1 or 2 core keywords and let the content flow naturally. Keyword spamming is a practice that is frowned upon by Google and won’t win you any points. Focusing on a few keywords will allow you to reach the same objective while your content remains natural. If you don’t know what keywords to use, you could work with a firm like that will help do the keyword research with you.

Include Links to Influencers

When building , don’t be afraid to link to other sources as well. Linking to other reputable websites not only gives your audience more material to read, but also shows them that there was some actual research involved. Nothing builds credibility like cold hard facts from reputable sources.

Use Internal Links

Internal links also play a role on how blog posts are ranked. Internal links facilitates the crawling process and allow Google bots to create a clearer sitemap. This will not only help your blog post rank, but other more obscure posts to rank as well.

Try to Go for Longer, Scannable Posts

In a time when attention spans are shorter than ever, you’d expect that shorter and easier to read posts would be winning points with search engines. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. Google still privileges longer posts, and higher-ranking articles usually have more words than those falling further down the rankings. However, make sure that the article is easily scannable by your readers. You can do that by using evocative headers that tell the full story. If your readers cannot get the gist of the article just by looking at the headers, you’re doing it wrong. Make sure that the headers are descriptive enough to give your readers at least a summary of what the article is about

Writing blog posts that rank well is truly a science. Understanding how search engines work and what they like can seem like a challenge, but is perfectly doable once you know what you’re doing. If you follow the tips outlined in this article, you shouldn’t have issues ranking your blog posts in the future.

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Why 99% of Blogs Will Fail in 2018

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Almost every one of the millions of blogs that are started in 2018 are destined to fail and die a slow, boring death.

This is not meant to be depressing (although it probably is…) because there are some practical solutions that we can apply in order to ensure that don’t end up in that sad category.

But before we look at those solutions we need to recognize the main causes of blog failure, and we need to face those problems head on.

Unfortunately, most people don’t even know it’s an issue that is likely to occur and so end up getting a big old surprise down the track.

The biggest danger for new bloggers

A lot of the people who read this particular blog are here because they have fallen in love with the art of blogging and want to make it a big part of their life.

Some of them are doing it because they are in some challenging times, others are doing it because they are worried about current issues like climate change and want to contribute to a greater public understanding.

Starting a new blog is an exciting time that is filled with a lot of hope and enthusiasm.

The sad part is that most bloggers will lose that excitement and enthusiasm when they start to realize that results are hard to come by – traffic is low, earnings are hard to achieve, and growth just doesn’t seem to occur.

So what is the biggest danger for new bloggers?

It’s time frames.

But what does that mean and how does it affect our blog’s chances of success over the next year or two? And, more importantly, is there anything we can do about it?

The time frame of a successful blog

When you first start a blog you spend so much time on all the set up.

blogging lifestyleYou’re busy doing things like on your server, building and all the email submit forms, setting up social networking accounts, writing blog posts, etc.

And while you’re doing all that you never really take time to think about how long it is going to take to actually see some results because you are so caught up in the excitement of just getting started.

But the honest fact is that a blog is just like any small business and a lot of small businesses don’t break even for at least a year, and sometimes two years.

This can be hard for a blogger to reconcile because blogging really does take up a lot of time, often while you are working another job or raising kids, and it often takes away from the moments you usually use to relax.

Start thinking about your blog as a small business, however, and things start to get a bit brighter. According to the U.S. Small Business Association about (PDF) will make it to their fifth year.

While that might not seem like a great statistics at first, when you think about all the people starting businesses it is actually quite hopeful to think that, in five years time, you’ll have a business that is making money.

I actually ran a little Twitter poll to ask people about why they think blog’s fail (you might have to vote in order to see the results):

Although the sample size is really small, I think the fact that a lot of people seem to lose interest is indicative of the fact that they thought it would “happen” a lot quicker than it does.

Perhaps our expectations and time frames for how long it takes to make a blog succeed are a little off?

How do we ensure that our blogs don’t fail in 2018?

I’d like to go in to a little detail now about how we can make sure that our new blogs aren’t one of those that fade away in the next year or so.

If you follow these tips I am quite sure that our blogs will be the kind of blogs that last the distance.

  • Make a solid plan with dates
    I mention this one quite a lot because it really is something that a lot of bloggers just overlook. Instead of just starting a blog and seeing what works, spend a week from the end-result to the types of content you’ll produce. That way you have some goals to hit and you know what to work on, and the expectations will be realistic. I think this is one of the major ways that you can avoid burning out due to the beginning phases of your blog being a little slow.
  • Find ways to make your blog distinctive
    When you look at you’ll notice that we are just a needle in a giant, growing haystack. One of the most important things you can do is figure out what your blog can offer the world that is different to the result. If you’re writing about a popular topic, how can you make your blog stand out and be memorable? This is a vital step to ensuring that you don’t get lost in the noise in 2018.
  • Focus on getting new visitors
    It’s absolutely critical that your blog gets of new traffic. And the activities that we need to do in order to get that traffic are a lot more than just writing posts and then sharing them on Twitter or Facebook. If that’s all you’re doing for traffic acquisition then there is a chance you won’t last the year. Make this a big part of your overall daily activities.
  • Network like your life depends on it
    I can honestly say that any success that I have had over the years has purely been due to the kindness of others. Whether it was readers who read my ramblings, or colleagues and mentors who helped me come up with better ideas or shared my stuff with their own readers, it’s all been because of them. Take some time to by linking to big blogs in your best articles, letting them know you’ve done that, and then, eventually, building a genuine relationship that might lead to shares and collaborations.
  • Spend some money…please
    This point is something that a lot of bloggers have a problem with and it is a real shame. Imagine starting a little cafe or restaurant and not wanting to spend money on stock, rent, insurance, advertising, etc. People would think you’re crazy! But a large portion of bloggers think that spending money on set up and promotion is a waste. It really is a bit backwards. Make sure you’re on a good host with a good theme, and then so as to get your blog out there. You can also think about spending money on education options like courses or membership sites that will help take you to new levels.
  • Learn how to research clever campaigns
    The last idea that I want to give you is something that is very simple but also incredibly effective and that is learning how to research. People like Glen from have become very good at looking at other websites to see how they had their success. If you want to keep your blog alive and healthy in 2018 you need to learn how to research what is working for other people in your niche. This allows you to get new ideas and improve on what they are doing so as to help your readers more effectively and build a solid reputation online.

Of course, this list of tips could go on and on forever, but I really feel that if you focus on a strategy that has a timeline for getting new traffic and making money you will avoid the main pitfall that bloggers face when it comes to unrealistic expectations.

What other risks are there for bloggers in 2018?

Of course, there are so many other variables that will affect how many blogs go on to success in the new year.

For example, a lot of people are worried about all the movements that are happening around and the fact that a few regulatory changes in the USA might mean that millions of websites around the world end up having their business model completely changed. This is something we are definitely trying to keep an eye on.

Then there is the fact that as your platform might lose popularity or start to trend downwards when you had expected it to keep rising. Medium, for example, moved to a majority subscription model recently which affected a lot of bloggers. Again, while it does have its own risks and challenges, it really does seem that is the best option for the long term because at least it is flexible.

The main thing that I think we should all remember, however, is that we are extremely fortunate to be in this business. We have such low barriers to entry (we don’t need business loans and staff to get started) and we can pretty much build a career from the comfort of our own homes instead of working in factories and fields.

With that in mind I am really pretty hopeful about the state of blogging in 2018 and feel that the current political situation and climate emergency is going to lead to a lot of people jumping online to try and write about the truth, facts, and bring logical debate back to the blogosphere.

Why do you think blogs fail?

Do you think your blog will survive the next year? I’d really love to know your thoughts about why you think the majority of blogs fail and if you think there are any tips they could have applied to survive and make it through to bigger and brighter futures.

Please leave a comment below as it might really help someone out there.

Top image © Daniel Villeneuve

Never Sacrifice Your Happiness For Success | Stefan James

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What Converts Better: $1,499 or $1499? Or in other words, COMMA or NO COMMA? Science says…

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What Converts Better: Comma or No Comma

So, you want to know what converts better? $1,499 or $1499? Or in other words, you want to know if a comma impacts the way people perceive your price?

Well…

Here’s how selling works:

First, you make an offer.

Then, potential buyers look at the VALUE and the PRICE of your offer.

And they compare the two:

When price is less than or equal to value, people buy

If the value is greater than the price, they buy.

If the value is lower than the price, they don’t buy.

Simple.

BUT there’s more to it…

#1 The Golden Rule of Pricing: Value Is AlL About Perception

Some people think it’s worth it to buy ridiculous amounts of sparkling water with almost NO flavor. Ridiculous!

Some people spend $400 on sneakers, but won’t spend an extra $2 for softer toilet paper. Also Ridiculous!

The point is:

Value is in the eye of the beholder.

Of course, if you’re selling anything, it’s YOUR JOB to communicate the value of your product or service.

In fact, this is your FIRST job:

You want to make the perceived-value bar as high as possible.

However, there’s a flipside, because…

Price is about perception, too.

So, instead of increasing the perceived value, you can also LOWER the perceived price.

Notice how I didn’t say lower your price. I said, lower the perceived price.

Nothing revolutionary here either, I know.

Now, I’ve talked about choosing a price to optimize conversions before…

…but did you know that you can change the perception of your price with a tweak so simple it only takes about 2 seconds?

The best part?

You don’t have to change your price. You just have to change how you PRESENT it…

I’ll explain.

In a study published in the Journal of Consumer Psychology, researchers tested different price formats.

Specifically, they tested “$1,499” against “$1499”. So, the first format included a comma. The second format had no comma.

Then, the researchers asked people to say these prices out loud. And here’s what happened:

When people read the price without the comma, 93% of them said “fourteen ninety-nine.”

When they read the price WITH the comma, 84% of people said “one thousand four hundred and ninety-nine.”

Interesting, right?

What’s happening is this:

With the comma, people frame it as a “thousand-something” price. Without the comma they think of the price in “hundreds.” And they SAY it differently…

This is important, because WITH the comma, it takes more syllables to say the price. And, as the researchers found, this makes the price seem higher!

Plus, the price with the comma looks bigger on paper or on the screen, simply because it’s takes up more visual space, too.

Pretty crazy…

The way we see a price, changes the way we think about a price, which changes the way we say a price, which changes how we assess a price!

The good news is that the lesson here is straightforward:

Don’t put a comma in your price!

And people will perceive the price to be lower.

However, be careful. There’s ONE caveat…

Things might change if you’re selling an offer in the six-figures, like real estate. Maybe even in the high 4- and 5-figures.

In these cases, leaving out the comma, is likely to be counterproductive.

Why?

Because now the price gets difficult to read. There are just too many digits.

But if you’re selling a product in the one-thousand to three-thousand dollar range, leaving out the comma is a smart tweak.

Finally, one more thing about formatting your prices:

The same study that tested commas, also tested prices with and without DECIMALS.

So, for example, “1,499.00” versus “1,499”.

But the results here are a little harder to interpret. Especially because there’s a lot of evidence that prices ending in 99 cent prices convert better…

However, here’s what I can tell you:

You definitely shouldn’t add decimals with no value, like two zeros. That just takes up more space, and makes the price look bigger than it needs to.

Cool? Cool.

So remember:

Kill the commas and decimals in your prices if you don’t need them.

Now, I know you may be tempted to “Split test pricing,” but I would highly discourage it. I even warn you about

In the end, a comma or no comma won’t make or break your business.

Now…

If you liked this video, make sure you check out my other videos on pricing.

For example, have you ever wondered what converts better between, $100, $99, and $97 dollars? We’ll I’ve got the answer for you here:

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