Monday, December 23, 2013

Pick 3 - the Wisdom of Seth Godin

Just reading the genius thoughts of Seth Godin... 
Pick three

Seth Godin
If I could suggest just one thing you could do that would transform how 2014 goes for you, it would be this:
Select three colleagues, bosses, investors, employees, co-conspirators or family members that have an influence over how you do your work. Choose people who care about you and what you produce.
Identify three books that challenge your status quo, business books that outline a new attitude/approach or strategy, or perhaps fiction or non-fiction that challenges you. Books you've read that you need them to read.
Buy the three books for each of the three people, and ask them each to read all three over the holiday break.
That's it. Three people, nine books, many conversations and forward leaps. No better way to spend $130.
I still remember handing copies of Snow Crash to my founding team at Yoyodyne. It changed our conversations for years. And years before that, Soul of a New Machine and The Mythical Man Month were touchstones used by programmers I worked with. When the team has a reference, a shared vocabulary and a new standard, you raise the bar for each other.
[If the Pick Three approach makes you uncomfortable, because you're not allowed to do this, or not supposed to, you have just confronted something important. And if this feels too expensive, it's worth thinking about how hard you're expecting to work next year, and how you plan to leverage all that effort.]

Wayne's comment:

My three books are Abundance by Peter Diamandis, 80/20 sales and Marketing with Perry Marshall and The Four Hour Chef by Tim Ferris

Saturday, December 21, 2013

“How these simple tricks get your writing read”

Drayton Bird
Feast on this amazing advice from Drayton Bird... and old guru [ actually older then me!! ] from marketing who is STILL kick goals:

Whether you think you’re a natural writer or not you can always improve. And it’s quite easy.
 
Did you think writing is a skill only a few are born with? That you either have it –or you don’t?
 
Well, the truth is, some people do have more inborn ability than others. But it’s equally true that no matter how much or little of that ability you have, you can improve by studying technique – tricks, if you like.
 
For example, the headline at the top uses no less than seven tricks that are likely to get it read. Don’t believe me? Here they are:
 
1.      Putting quotation marks round a statement increases readership
2.      The word “How” makes people think (rightly) that they will get some advice.
3.      The word “these” makes the advice sound specific.
4.      “Simple” makes it sound easy – and the word “easy” in the subhead also increases readership – because people hate hard work.
5.      “Tricks” makes it seem easy as well.
6.      The phrase “that get your writing read” increases readership because it makes the sentence active – that those simple tricks will do all the work for you
7.      The word “your” helps, too, because people are interested in themselves.
 
In fact the words “you” or “your” appear 7 times in the first 44 words of this piece. That is certain to increase readership.
 
But that’s not all.
 
The subhead encourages people to start reading your full story; it’s a bit like the hors d’oeuvre in a restaurant.
 
The use of questions keeps people reading – because they suggest answers to come. So does a list of specific examples – because when someone suggests something to you, you often say to yourself, “What do you mean?”
 
And did you notice that the paragraphs in this piece vary in length? One is only four words long. The eye and the mind enjoy variety.
 
Winston Churchill – and what causes much bad writing
 
There are quite a few other things worth remembering, starting with Winston Churchill’s advice: “Use simple words everyone knows. Then everyone will understand.”
 
One cause of bad writing is mental stiffness. It’s like the discomfort you may feel in strange surroundings. You may start to behave rather stiffly, not as you normally would.
 
In the same way many who do not feel entirely comfortable writing start using words they never normally would; words they think are literary – like “purchase” instead of “buy”. A little voice inside them says, “I am writing. This is different. I must use different words.”
 
It is true that writing is not the same as casual chat. It is more formal – but it is really nothing more than well-organised speech. You have time, as you write, to think things out and arrange them well in a way you cannot in the rush of speech.
 
One thing that helps is the crosshead, which has three functions. It marks a sensible break in your story; it gives the reader a breather; and it should tell that reader something about what comes next. It should never be incomprehensible or too clever.
 
Two things are essential if you wish to write well.
 
One is to read a lot. If you don’t, you have no chance – any more than a composer who never listened to music would write well. If you are writing for ordinary people, read popular newspapers and books. Copy them.
 
The other is to work hard. Never be satisfied with your first draft. Even a very good professional writer can rarely do something perfect in one go

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Smoking cigars helped a famous author write... Mark Twain

Mark Twain — master of epistolary snarkunsuspected poet, cheeky adviser of little girls — followed a simple but rigorous routine: 


Mark Twain [ Samuel Clements ]

He would go to the study in the morning after a hearty breakfast and stay there until dinner at about 5:00. Since he skipped lunch, and since his family would not venture near the study — they would blow a horn if they needed him — he could usually work uninterruptedly for several hours. … After dinner, Twain would read his day’s work to the assembled family. He liked to have an audience, and his evening performances almost always won their approval. On Sundays, Twain skipped work to relax with his wife and children, read, and daydream in some shady spot on the farm. Whether or not he was working, he smoked cigars constantly.

Friday, December 13, 2013

17 Dr Who Little Known Facts


  1.  The first episode of Doctor Who (An Unearthly Child) was broadcast at 5.15pm on 23 November 1963, and at that time this year the 50th Anniversary episode is going to be broadcast simultaneously across all over the world.
  2. There are 106 missing episodes which no longer exist due to an archive purge in the 1970s, as well as four episodes which only survive in an edited state and twelve episodes which only exist in black and white despite originally being filmed in colour. Important scenes lost because of this include the first appearance of the sonic screwdriver, the introduction of recurring character Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart and the majority of The Doctor’s first regeneration.
  3. “TARDIS” and “Dalek” are in the Oxford English Dictionary. Seriously, look it up!
  4. When the Daleks were first introduced they required radiation and static electricity to survive. In addition, and incredibly weirdly, rather than going straight for the kill the Daleks choose to temporarily paralyse the companion, and warn him that they’d kill him if he tried to escape again. It wasn’t until their second appearance that they became the genocidal maniacs we all know and love.
  5. Before landing the role of the Tenth Doctor, David Tennant had roles in several Doctor Who audio dramas and also narrated a documentary about the revival of the show in 2005 (titled ‘Doctor Who’: A New Dimension).
  6. The title of series 5 episode The Big Bang isn’t referring to the explosion that created the universe.
  7. Tom Baker (the Fourth Doctor) and Lalla Ward (the second regeneration of Romana) had a romance on set and even got married, though they divorced 16 months later.
  8. This is going to get confusing, so bear with me: Georgia Moffett is the daughter of Peter Davison, the Fifth Doctor. In series 4 of the revival she plays the Tenth Doctor’s “daughter” Jenny. She married David Tennant in 2011 and they now have a daughter and son. These kids have The Doctor as both a father and a grandfather, and The Doctor’s daughter who played The Doctor’s Daughter who had the Doctor’s Daughter as a mother.
  9. On top of that, did I mention that Peter Davison was the one who inspired Tennant to get into acting? Talk about a mind screw!
  10. Caitlin Blackwood, who played the young Amelia Pond, is Karen Gillian’s real life cousin. The first time they met was at an on set read-through, as Blackwood was born in North Ireland and Gillian in Scotland.
  11. A serial titled The Final Game was intended to end Season 11 with the reveal that The Doctor and The Master were brothers and have The Master sacrifice himself to save The Doctor’s life. The death of The Master’s actor Roger Delgado resulted in the serial being scraped, though the ending was be reused in the revival series episode The End of Time.
  12. Matt Smith appeared as a client in Secret Diary of a Call Girl, which stars Billie Piper (Rose Tyler) as the titular call girl. The Tenth Doctor must have been bitterly disappointed.
  13. BBC One commissioned a spin-off about Rose’s life on the alternate Earth, but Russell T Davies cancelled it as he felt it would spoil Doctor Who if “we see as a concrete fact that her life continues to be as exciting without The Doctor.” Which is really disappointing, since Rose Tyler: Earth Defencesounds like it would have been fantastic!
  14. In the late 80s co-creator Sydney Newman suggested that a woman should be cast as The Doctor to boost ratings. This may shock you, but that didn’t end up happening.
  15. The Daleks almost didn’t appear in the revived series, as the Terry Nation (co-creator of the Daleks) estate owns the copyright and they were initially unable to reach an agreement with the BBC regarding editorial control. The Toclafane were going to be used as a replacement before the estate relented.
  16. Karen Gillian first appeared in Doctor Who as a Soothsayer in the revival series four episode The Fires of Pompeii. This is the same episode that Peter Capaldi made his Doctor Who debut as the Roman banker Caecilius.
  17. Aspirin is poisonous to Gallifreyans according to the eighth season serial The Mind of Evil.

Source article:  Grapeshot

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Masterminds... should you be in one...

The concept of Mastermind Groups was first discussed by Napoleon Hill in his famous book, "Think And Grow Rich." In his research of the most successful people of his time, Hill found that a key difference that made people successful was being involved in Mastermind Groups.Masterminding involves bringing people together with different experiences and ideas to collaborate, brainstorm, and provide support to help the participants achieve their goals. For business owners Masterminding can help you model other successful entrepreneurs, make you accountable for achieving your goals, and provide you with your own personal experienced board of directors.

Famous Example: Henry Ford's Mastermind Group

In "Think and Grow Rich", Napoleon Hill talks about Henry Ford's Mastermind Group:

"Men take on the nature and the habits and the power of thought of those with whom they associate in a spirit of sympathy and harmony. Through his association with Edison, Burbank, Burroughs, and Firestone, Mr. Ford added to his own brain power the sum and substance of the intelligence, experience, knowledge, and spiritual forces of these four men. Moreover, he appropriated and made use of the Master Mindprinciple."

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

7 MONEY MAKING FACTS MOST MARKETERS DON'T KNOW

From Drayton Bird:

Amazing, but true: most marketers go about things in a way guaranteed to get them less sales. 

Here are a few things I’ve learned about what works and what doesn’t if you want to get more replies, sales, leads – whatever. 

1. Do what a salesperson would do 

Your message in print or via e-mail is just a substitute for personal, face-to-face selling. If you could afford to send a persuasive human being to every prospect, you would. Nothing is more powerful. 

So your messages should do what salespeople do. 

This means, among other things: 

Do a complete selling job. Tell the full story; all the reasons to reply, not just some. As a famous expert said over 60 years ago, “Would a salesman give you one reason to buy today, then come back and give you another tomorrow? That would be crazy.” 

So do the opposite of what most people do, which is run copy as short as they can. Long copy almost always beats short 

Never give up. Keep chasing people. Years ago McGraw-Hill learned it takes an average of six calls for a salesman to make a sale. 

2. Emotion beats logic – even for “unemotional” products 

People may justify their decisions logically, but they make them on emotion because they are all human beings. So focus on the things that drive people crazy or that they dream of, not the rational arguments. 

One subject people think of as “logical” is finance. It’s boring, they imagine. So how come people kill for money – every day, all over the world? 

Others think of business products as dull. So how come people at work often feel frustrated and are rude about colleagues? Because feelings come into all situations. You just have to find them and make use of them. 

The best messages start with emotion and use logic to explain and convince. A good example is a famous old headline: “Last week, was I scared … My boss almost fired me.” 



3. Dig deeper 

Too often people know what they offer so well that they either assume the prospects knows what they are talking about, or they are themselves too bored to look. 

Time and again we find revealing and powerful arguments are being ignored. In one case a client didn’t even know about the powerful testimonials his customers were giving. They were not in the marketing department, but in customer service. We found them by digging around and built a strong sales story on them. 

4. Think as a buyer, not a seller. Look for the ultimate benefit 

People spend a lot of time looking for unique selling propositions – quite rightly. But then they fail to translate them into unique buying propositions. 

For instance, one client has the largest team of financial researchers in the country. Very impressive. But that’s not the benefit to the customer. The research means the clients will be better informed and thus able to make better investment decisions. That’s a benefit. 

But it isn’t the ultimate benefit. The ultimate benefit is that the client will make more money and retire rich. 

5. Compared to what? 

Most messages focus on why the product or service is good – or even better. 

But better than what? 

Few think about what is going through the customers’ minds. They are thinking, “What can you do for me that no-one else can do?” Or, “What do you do better then anyone else?” 

Unless you do answer these questions, you are failing to do a complete selling job. You are missing sales. 

6. What’s the reason why? 

Over 150 years ago a man called John E Powers made a fortune as a copywriter – when hardly anyone even knew what a copywriter was. 

He did it by introducing “reason-why” copy. 

Boasting about how wonderful you are, or explaining that you offer a better deal is meaningless unless people believe you. 

So, if you offer lower prices, explain how and why you do it; if you are offering the chance to win something, tell people why you do it (to get more leads for less money). 

7. Think less, act more 

The bigger firms get the more they have meetings. A meeting is no substitute for action – “Search the parks in all the cities; you’ll find no statues to committees”. 

One year I saw two clients on the same day in the same city. One spent six months having meetings about the copy. 

The other got on with it and had a record month 6 months later. The sooner you act, the sooner you find out what works and what doesn’t.

Friday, December 06, 2013

Here’s to the crazy ones

“Here’s to the crazy ones.
The misfits.
The rebels.
The troublemakers.
The round pegs in the square holes.
The ones who see things differently.

They’re not fond of rules.
And they have no respect for the status quo.
You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them.
About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them.
Because they change things.
They push the human race forward.
And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius.
Steve Jobs

Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.” 
 - Steve Jobs

Thursday, December 05, 2013

21 Effective Ways and Guides to a good Sales Piece

Salesletter Formula: 21 Effective Ways and Guides to a good Sales Piece

Salesletter Formula: 21 Effective Ways and Guides to a good Sales piece
The Salesletter Formula can be a big help with your marketing plan, when you know exactly how to follow.  This is an  important tool to write a good salesletter, and video letters as well. Let me share some of these. Over the  years , I’ve added a few points today to the Salesletter  Formula, and I’d like to share this with you now.
I read an article by David Frey called the 12 step foolproof Salesletter formula,  a few years ago. This formula has made me millions of dollars over the last few years.
Many thanks go to David, a brilliant marketer from San Antonio, Texas, a credit for opening to me the effective Salesletter Formula.
I kind of feel like I’m painting a mustache on the Mona Lisa by doing this, everybody asked how you write sales letters, and video sales letter so well. This is the exact formula to follow.
I’m working on a new book on the subject and would love all your feedback questions and comments. I’ll be answering all these personally so please, fire away.

21 part effective sales letter formula :
1. Call out to your audience
2. Get their attention
3. Backup the big promise headline with an quick explanation (SUB)
4. Identify the problem
5. Provide the solution
6. Show pain of and cost of development
7. Explain ease-of-use
8. Show speed to results
9. Future cast
10. Show your credentials
11. Detail the benefits
12. Get social proof
13. Make your offer
14. Add bonuses
15. Build up your value
16. Reveal your price (pop by button)
17. Inject scarcity (if any)
18. Give guarantee
19. Call to action
20. Give a warning
21. Close with a reminder
I also added my part copy test that I asked myself when I finished any new sales piece. You really should do this the day after you finish your sales letter or video sales letter, after you have had a chance to read or reread it out loud.
http://www.stumpjump.netBy the way that one tip is really important. You should always read every completed sales piece you ever write including e-mails out loud preferably to another human being. It will probably improve your copy at least 100%
The Eight-Part Copy Test After Finishing the Sales Piece:
1. Did you grab your readers by the throat your readers with your headline?
2. Did you clearly explain that you understand the problem?
3. Did you show them so much proof that they can’t possibly doubt what
you had to say?
4. Did you show features and benefits to your offer that included the word
so in each line?
5. Did you ensure your prospects that your product will be very very easy
to use?
6. Did you ensure to your prospects that your product would work very
quickly to solve the problem?
7. Did you clearly explain the pain of the experience by not accepting your
offer?
8. Did you demonstrate incredible value in your offer so much so that your
prospect would feel stupid by not buying your product?

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

5 Step Plan for How To go from Deadbeat to successful


If you want to get clarity about how to get what you want in your life, here are 8 simple tips for what to focus on so that you can get (and keep) on the right track in 2014.


1)      Identify your strengths. What are your strengths and weaknesses? If you are concentrating on your strengths instead of your weaknesses you will be more successful and better able to clarify your purpose.

2)      Become the best at what you do. Whatever your biggest strength is…be it selling real estate, repairing cars, cooking food…focus on education and actions that help you become the BEST at what you do. Because people pay more for the best, want to work with the best and want to be around the best.

3)      Choose your future. It doesn’t matter what happened in the past, or what is going on right now. Don’t let your past identify you or consume your thoughts. You get to decide what you want your future to be. Your future will be dictated by the actions you take today.

4)      Solve problems fast. Everybody experiences problems, conflicts and challenges. The trick is to not let them fester. As soon as you identify a problem, swoop in and resolve it quickly before it becomes a bigger problem.

5)      Invest in your future. Sometimes we get so caught up in the day to day “stuff” that we don’t make time for our future. Not only do you need to invest in education to build your ideal business and life, but you need to invest time in planning for the future. Make sure to build in time to work on your one year, five year, and ten year goals.

Bonus Tip:      Eliminate negative influences and surround yourself with positive influences instead. You know who and what the negative influences are. They are the things in your life that suck the energy out of you, leave you feeling lazy, resentful, whiny, or bad. Get rid of them. Whether it’s a person or a “thing,” you must eliminate them.

You need an ideal environment before you can build an ideal life, and you’ll never have that as long as these negative influences are in your life. Surround yourself with positive influences—the people and things that make you feel full of life, hope and energy

Inspired by an article about Dan Kennedy's Super Conference 2014 are you going??

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Never Give Up - KEEP YOUR EYES UPON THE GOAL

Florence Chadwick
On July 4, 1952,  Florence Chadwick was on her way to becoming the first woman to swim the Catalina Channel.

She had already conquered the English Channel. The world was watching. Chadwick fought the dense fog, bone-chilling cold and many times, the sharks. She was striving to reach the shore but every time she looked through her goggles, all she could see was the dense fog.

Unable to see the shore, she gave up. Chadwick was disappointed when she found out that she was only half a mile from the coast. She quit, not because she was a quitter but because her goal was not in sight anywhere.

The elements didn't stop her. She said, "I'm not making excuses. If only I had seen the land, I could have made it."

Two months later, she went back and swam the Catalina Channel. This time, in spite of the bad weather, she had her goal in mind and not only accomplished it but beat the men's record by two hours.

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