Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Marketing Tactics You Shouldn't Use (at least, if you want to do business with me)

Marketers are annoying. I know, there are tons of "boot camps", "webinars" and "master classes" out there to tell you how to supposedly sell your material. Most of them suck, and make you look annoying if not dishonest, greedy, and stupid.

I've been exposed to many of them. There are some people, like Mike Cernovich, that get it right. Mike recently put a new book up for pre-order. He wrote a blog post, and sent out a SINGLE email to his mailing list with a link to the post. Essentially, it was low key. "Hey, guys, I have a new book coming up. Here's what it's about... You can pre-order it here." That's all. I pre-ordered it, because I like Mike's work and he didn't annoy me with his sales pitch. I also read his book "Gorilla Mindset", which I haven't gotten around to reviewing. You can buy it here:Gorilla Mindset.

Contrast that to some other techniques, most of which send me running the other way.

Using the words "webinar", "boot camp", or "master class".

These words do not resonate with me. Webinar for some reason, I associate with scaminar. Somewhere back around 2008 or 9, I signed up for some free "social media webinar". It was an hour and a half of things I already knew, followed by a sales pitch for some multi thousand dollar "social media bootcamp".

I have been to boot camp (called Recruit Training in the Navy). Whatever you call your scaminar, I'm sure it is NOTHING like a real military boot camp. Your marketing doesn't even come close in association to me. Maybe some non-military, baby boomer draft dodger will see it as an elite term. To me, you look stupid. And I don't do business with stupid.

You want a real boot camp? Spend 8 weeks living in open bay barracks, doing pushups every time you or anybody else screws up, stand watch at night, march, go up to 10 hours in between head calls (bathroom breaks), try to stay awake through classroom instruction, eat crappy food, get yelled at, experience the "gas chamber", and so on. That's a boot camp. You also get paid for boot camp, although it's probably several thousand dollars less than most of these idiot camps cost.

Master class is another word I associate with a scam. What makes your class any better than any other class? I have a bachelors degree and am more than halfway to a master's. I've been to many classes; real classes put together by people who are hopefully subject matter experts and accredited by an association. Is your "master class" accredited by anybody or anything? Then what value can I expect from it, especially when it costs more than a regular college class, many of which are too expensive anyway?

Repeated emails

I don't mind giving my email address. Sure, it's your prerogative, maybe even right as site owner to ask for an email address before allowing access to site content. But then the emails keep coming, and coming, and coming, until I'm forced to either unsubscribe or create a filter that just routes them to a label in gmail where I can mark them all as read and delete them at one time. Or mark them as spam.

I recently gave my email address for access to a site. And I haven't had a chance to go through the "free" material yet, but now the guy sends me 4-5 emails a day. Most of which are just repeats. That's Eben Pagan.

Donald Miller is about to get unsubscribed from too. I've read and reviewed a couple of his books, and enjoyed them. I guess I subscribed to his list at some point. Now, I get 3 or more emails a day from him about his story something or other program. One is enough. And I don't mean one a day. Send me a single email announcing it, with the details, and if I'm not interested or able, I'll delete it and move on. Send me more, and I'm off your list. Your precious list.

Subjective value

"This information product is valued at 18 trillion dollars, but I'll sell it to you for $79.95"

People will try to sell a 30 page "ebook" for $40-$70 or even more. Unless you can provide some REAL reviews, I'm not biting.

I can't believe you didn't take advantage...

One of the fastest ways to get me to delete your email and unsubscribe is this tactic, which I see as dishonest. It's normally matched to my name, but I know email autoresponders can do that so I'm on to your dishonest game. "Eric, I can't believe you haven't taken advantage of my $79.95 a month Social Media Master Class!"

Right, as if you're sitting around with my picture and my resume, praying and fasting to God that I'll register and pay so you can fill me with your Holy Spirit of Internet marketing. Kiss my ass. Unsubscribe. I used to follow Michael Hyatt, and unsubscribed from his emails shortly after he tried this bullshit with his Platform University. Believe it, Michael, I haven't taken advantage of your offer. And by this point, I won't. And I'm not buying your book either.

The fake superior requesting somebody do something to get me to buy

This one is even worse. You get what looks like an email forwarded from a higher up to the lower level sales guy "Bob, see what you can do to reach out to Eric. I've been trying to contact him, and he's a perfect fit for this offer- Harry Balls, Supreme Diety of Marketing".

I don't know if anybody is stupid enough to fall for that one. Car dealers around here do this all the time. I'll get a letter with what looks like a photo copied sticky note from the Sales Manager telling a salesman to reach out to me about some great deal, or to get me to trade in my current car for a supposed great deal. I wish they'd just throw them away on their end to save me the trouble.

I've been trying to contact you!

I hate this tactic. If you've been trying to contact me, why don't I see ANY evidence of it whatsoever? No emails, no phone calls, no voice messages. You obviously have my email address. If you want to come off as dishonest right out of the gate, use this one.

Not providing a real unsubscribe

Some people build email lists, and there's no way to unsubscribe from them. Sure, there's an unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email, which you click, enter your email address, and get confirmation that you've unsubscribed. But the emails keep on coming. And you unsubscribe again. And nothing changes.

Mike Adams "The Health Ranger" is a good example of this. I once thought it might be worth being on his email list. But he sends out more than 6 emails a day, which is far too many for my tastes, especially when hardly any of them have value. So I tried to unsubscribe several times. Each time, I got confirmation that I unsubscribed. But nothing changed. So I was left with no choice but to mark his emails as spam. And sure enough, every morning when I check my spam folder, I have six or more emails from Mike Adams in there. And every other email list that doesn't actually let you unsubscribe. It's getting overwhelming to the point where I have a hard time filtering out the real email that got marked as spam for some reason.

Changing your autoresponder email address

This one really annoys me. I prefer to keep my inbox only to emails that are important to me. If I decide your email is low priority but still worth reading WHEN I DECIDE TO READ IT, I create a filter and have it shunted off to another folder. Then you change your address, and I get a ping on my phone telling me I have a new email in my inbox. Hoping it's somebody I actually want to drop what I'm doing to hear from, I check email and find it's only you. So I set another filter, and you change addresses again. This is annoying. What are you, an attention whore? Nobody likes an attention whore. Go post selfies on Facebook like a good attention whore and leave me alone.


This one is just as bad as too many emails. Brian Tracy is famous for this, among others. "Only 24 hours left to get this great deal!" "Only 23 hours left to get this great deal!" And so on.

You will never see this deal again!

Bullshit. I've been on your list long enough to know you've been running this same deal every 3 days for the past several years. Liar.


I do business with you for the value it gives me. Not the other way around. I don't care what you get out of the deal. I don't even care if you're still around next month, and the more you annoy me, the more I hope you're not. If you provide value, and don't annoy me, I hope you're around for a LONG time.

So for you younger guys getting into Internet marketing, please remember. Create a product that brings value to people. It's probably useful to offer some free information to show that you have value to offer from your paid products. Great examples of this are Ramit Sethi and John T. Reed. Both provide a lot of useful free information, and their paid for products are an even better value. I haven't taken any of Sethi's classes, but I have bought his book. I've bought and read 4 of Reed's books. Good stuff. Follow their examples, and the examples of men like Mike Cernovich and Roosh V, not Brian Tracy, Eben Pagan, and some of the others I've mentioned. Don't annoy people. Remember, it's about what's in it for me. (Me being each individual customer you hope to acquire- and of course, ME).
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