As part of this article I am going to be doing an entire series that will show a live case study of me doing exactly what this post talks about.
That said … lets talk about how I dominate markets.
I want to know that I can actually reach the market that I’m after. I want to know that there are blogs, forums, facebook groups, Meetups, Google+ Hangouts, and so on. At a bare minimum I want to be able to easily find a facebook group related to the market with at least 10,000 members and at least 3 blogs with some fairly decent traffic and decent technorati rankings.
Way back when Joshua Shafran put out something called NPOD and he talked about “databases” constantly. That’s what I want to see. I want to know that there are “databases” … or groups of people that I can quickly target.
Only after I know that I can find where the market “hangs out” do I worry about the difficulty of getting good rankings. In other words, I want to know that I can generate traffic before I even care about the difficulty of search rankings. Honestly the way I work the search rankings are going to happen no matter what, so most of the time the normal “key word research” that you see people like Ed Dale talking about with the 30DC is something that I’ll do only when I’m trying to decide between markets and then I’ll use that as a sort of tie breaker.
That said, one thing I do like to see is adwords spending. The more that is being spent the better because it is a pretty strong indicator of how much profit potential there is per customer.
Now like I said, I’m going to be actually demonstrating the research as part of the live case study posts that I’ll be doing later. Since this is already going to be a long post, I’m going to end this part here. Just remember, it’s more important to know where your market meets/congregates/etc online than it is to know what difficulty you’re going to have ranking in the search engines. If you can talk to your market, then you can drive traffic to your site and you can sell them.
2) What’s the problem/desire?
Once I know that a market can be reached, I want to know what their problems are and what kinds of things they want/want to know. I use my earlier research about the forums and blogs to help me with getting some RSS feeds that seriously make me very “plugged into” the market in just a couple of days. I’ll also snatch some RSS feeds from google blog search, google alerts, and technorati blog search as well. Like I said, the idea is to submerge myself into the market very quickly. Often during this step I’ll find several more blogs and the like. I’ll also start figuring out how the major players are.
From here I’ll start researching. I’ll want to know that I can create some really good content.
3) Getting Set Up To Crush It
Next I’ll go to Google and create a new mail account (I create separate “identities” for each market I work in) and accounts at Google+, Google Docs, Blogger, and YouTube. If the market is heavily concentrated into some facebook groups, I’ll create an account there also. Blogger and YouTube will be given key word loaded titles. While above I said I’m not really worried about search rankings that doesn’t mean I ignore it either.
Notice I said nothing about a domain name or web hosting. I don’t often actually spend money on those. Nearly always I just stick to the above because they give me more than enough.
At this point I spend the first bit of money and grab a TubeToolbox.com “license” for the YouTube Channel.
Next, I’ll find some good YouTube videos that I can put into some playlists so that I can start using that to gain friends and subscribers.
Finally, I’ll get a free account at mailchimp.com … the free account doesn’t have the autoresponder features but right now I don’t care. I just want to know that I can capture people into a list.
4) Initial Content Creation
Next I’ll try and find two things that I can create that will be some absolutely kick ass content for the market. I want to create some initial content so good it can’t hardly be ignored once I start talking about it.
In this case, one piece of content will be done in text and put on blogger and in video and put on YouTube. Both will link over to Google Plus which will have status updates that link back to them.
Let me be clear here … the first content has to be REALLY good. It’s why I get the Google Docs account. Very often my first content will be full blown special reports on Google Docs that I link to from Blogger. I’ll have some good graphics and everything in there.
The first content on the blog will talk about the other piece and say that special report will be given to people when they sign up to my mailing list.
I know that the same thing is already on G+ and on YouTube. However, on YouTube really good videos are likely to get me friends and subscribers, and on G+ it’s likely to get me +1’d and Circle Added.
The Blog doesn’t give people easy ways of following me if they like the content so that’s where mailchimp comes in. Each new subscriber I simply manually email the link to the second report on Google Docs. In the beginning there won’t be enough people for this to be a problem. By the time it is some sales will be generated and I’ll use that to pay for upgrading mail chimp to give me the autoresponder feature.
What I’m saying here is that I do not care that everyone is in my mailing list. Someone that’s put me in their circles on G+ is just as good to me as someone that’s subscribed to my YouTube channel or been added to my mailing list.
Later I will start trying to get people to be in all of those places by putting some content in only one place and telling people that to get it they have to branch out. But more on that later.
5) Cheating A Bit
At this point it’s time to go to the forums and the blogs. I’ll create a different name that I’ll use for all of the forums and for the blogs,, and this is important, I will always create those accounts and post to them ONLY from my library. I do not want the IP address to match up with the address of my “market identity” when I start posting from my house.
Think of it almost like a second identity with the market and therefore it needs to have it’s own location information separate from the first market identity if that makes sense.
What I’ll do now is start discussions around the topic of my content. This way I can link to that content without it seeming “self promotional”.
What I’m saying is that I want to start discussions in a way that lets me link to the killer content. This is why the blogs, forums, and facebook groups are so important. They let me do that.
Obviously the blogs is a little different because the discussion only takes place in the comments, but if the blogs are good enough (and if I’ve done my research they are) then that will still result in plenty of traffic, and I don’t care if the links are do follow or not.
And on that note, I absolutely DO NOT link to anything as part of my name. The “website” field when you’re commenting on a blog is left blank. That’s very important.
If I did my job correctly, there should fairly quickly get to be discussion about my content, often it’s being shared, and people are asking who the person is that created it.
6) More Great Content
From here it is extremely important to back this up with more great content. Again, we’re talking special report level stuff. Excellent graphics, fantastic information … and information that I know the market is interested in because I’ve continued to keep up with the various RSS feeds.
Again, I’ll continue stirring up interest on the forums and blogs relating to the topics of the posts and linking out to them.
I will also finally get my “main market identity” onto those forums and blogs so that now I’m becoming a “real person” within the community.
Once this happens that secondary identity that I used will begin fading away pretty fast. My main market identity will start posting to the forums pretty hot and heavy so that I can post links myself.
As part of this, and this is important, I am going to be looking for any and every good piece of content that I can find elsewhere on the internet that I can link to related to the market.
I want people to get real used to the fact that I link to other sources so that later, when I link to my own stuff no one will think it strange and it passes under the moderators radar.
I want to point something out here.
The idea here is to become an expert within the market extremely quickly, and this isn’t some play-pretend at it either. In many ways I’ll be doing far more market research and therefore know far more, than people that have been involved for years.
The RSS feeds, researching problems and wants of the market, the production of really good content, all leads up to me becoming a bonafide expert. People will inevitably view me that way and I want to make sure that I live up to it.
In fact, let me be clear about something. What’s been done up to this point has been purposely designed to turn me into a recognized expert within a period of a maximum of two weeks. Often that can be done in a single week if I focus and work at it.
However, doing this so quickly requires great content, with great graphics. If you want to be looked at as an expert in the market you have to act like it.
At this point I also start spending a little money. I’ll go to fiverr.com and obtain some +1s and some likes to my content. A few hundred of those, after the promotion through the forums and the blogs makes people believe that I’ve really got something going.
Often, the purchase of those likes and +1s will get tons of other people in the market to start sharing it as well. A few $5 purchases for some of the content in +1s and likes and suddenly the content is being shared all over the place.
And seriously, some of that will also cause massive benefits in the search rankings. It isn’t uncommon for me to come out of no where and suddenly be dominating the search rankings also. However, that’s just icing on the cake. I want the traffic from the other blogs and forums and the like.
7) Spreading It Around
At this point I now want to start finding places where I can guest blog. Blogger link up, HARO (helpareporter) are places where I start. I’ll do searches on twitter and google looking for “guest post” and “guest author” along with some relevant key phrases for the market. I’ll contact the appropriate blogger and pitch some article ideas to them.
There are a TON of really good articles online about being a guest author on another blog, just do some searches and you’ll find them.
What I’m going for here is to get my name out there along with links back to my sites and content. Basically, it’s mostly a traffic generation strategy, but it does help out with search rankings as well.
Now that I’ve started to be looked at as an expert, now that I’m already generating a following, it’s time to monetize. Almost always I simply use Google Checkout for this (you seeing a pattern here).
Now I have to admit something … I’ve got some seriously big balls. I don’t mean to be crude but there’s no other way to put it.
When it comes to this I almost always want to go for something very high dollar. In fact, I really want to sell something that is much more expensive than anything else currently being sold in that space. The reason here is two fold:
- I’m viewed as an expert so I can get away with it
- I’m viewed as an expert so therefore I should be charging more
In this regard I’m looking to do things no one else is doing. I can’t say what here because there are a million different ideas; from high dollar (very high) membership sites to mastermind groups to some kind of physical shipped thing.
I’ve bundled (in fact nearly always I do) some “thing” with some kind of information to increase perceived value.
My point is that I don’t get bashful. I’ve put forward a ton of work to be an expert. Real experts charge more. Since I don’t want to just be “another” expert … since I want to be thought of as the number 1 guy in the space, I charge the most.
I feel that I bring a lot to the table, therefore I want there to be a fair bit of exclusivity about me and everything that I sell.
There is a side benefit to charging so much when I start to monetize.
Because I’m charging a lot, I can provide much more than any other person in the space. This makes what I’m doing worth much more. In other words, by charging an amount that says I’m the best, I actually am the best because of the things I can provide that no one else does.
In other words, this literally becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.
Having said that, if you’re going to charge a lot, if you’re going to say you’re the best; you better damn well be the best.
You can wreck your position in the market in a huge hurry if you don’t.
On the flip side, by simply suddenly showing up from no where, becoming a hotly talked about expert with great content; when I do start selling something that is so expensive that also becomes a huge topic for conversation.
It literally expands the whole “mystique” that I’ve built up.
Now, when the product actually delivers massive value even for the high price I’m charging, I get good comments in the market from the customers which now cements my position.
I’ve made as much as 500 grand in 30 days … to as little as nothing. Most of the time it’s in the five figures somewhere.
At this point it’s time to ante up and finally get that mail chimp account upgraded and begin systemizing and automating. I’ll link up with other big dogs and work cooperatively with them, often sharing content and as much as possible I will give them content to put into their products and I won’t ask for anything other than the mention in that product.
At this point I’ll also start outsourcing. It is here that go dive really hard into partnering with Google, Apple, and Amazon. I will give you a special report that explains exactly how to partner with each of them when you add my Google Plus page to your circles. That page is still new but tons of great content will be added to it shortly.
This phase is about scaling the business “out of my hands” so that it can grow and not have me as a bottleneck.
Hopefully this post helps all of you.